¡FELIZ NAVIDAD! Or they say here, ¨¡FELIZ FIESTA! Which is sad because it´s not about the fiesta...it´s about the Savior of the World.
We had a great Christmas Celebration yesterday (that´s why I´m emailing today...)
The week... we had a very trying week – we fasted on Thursday all day until our cita at night with the familia Roberto. We explained to them the importance of bautismo and committed all of them to get baptized that weekend as planned. They said YES! But were just a little hestitant because el Papá was not there – and wouldn´t be there until the 29th of Diciembre. But they felt the Spirit as Hermana Freeman and I testified of the importance of our first covenant with our Father in Heaven. We began to plan EVERYTHING and they were SUPER excited! They even went to our Christmas Party the ward had at the church. The Party was really really fun – I even sang a solo of Cantan Santos Angeles (Angels We Have Heard on High), while Hermana Freeman was playing and Ezekiel, a boy in the ward, was playing the guitar. I was nervous, but it was SO fun! It reminded me of caroling with the fam every year!
But the day before the bautismo, Claudia called and said they couldn´t get baptized. That Jennifer is sick, Kevin too, and the Dad isn´t there. It was surreal – we had felt so sure that the Spirit told us YES! they need to get baptized now, but we weren´t sure why when in the end. So, sadly we did not have any bautismos. They didn´t go to church either. SO, we re set the fecha del bautismo to the 30th of Diciembre, but it all depends on the Papá Oscar when he comes home on the 29th if they will do it or not. As a mission we are trying to get 100 bautismos this month and we´ve felt like they need to get baptized pronto, so hopefully they will feel the Spirit and do it SOON!
Firstly, we PLAYED PLAYED PLAYED! We haven´t been able to play for P-Day´s because we need more bautismos to get our playful P-days back, but for Christmas, we were given a morning to PLAY! I played frisbee and volleyball until I couldn´t feel my legs anymore and I had quite enough bruises on my knees.... there are still some things that have not changed! J
Next we had an Argentina ASADO!! I had carne (beef) and pollo (chicken) and wow, it was GOOD! Afterwards, the Hermanas all went to get ice cream at San Marino, a famous ice cream place here in Mar del Plata. ¡RIQUÍSIMO! Then we changed and had a show de talentos (Talent Show...haha). We had a group of Élderes and Hermanas get together and sing ¨Noche de Luz¨ (¨Silent Night¨). I sang the alto part; It was really beautiful!
Then La Hermana Detlefsen and Presidente Detlefsen did a devocional. It was wonderful! Hermana talked about developing Christlike atributes for the year to come. Presidente talked about how he worked on the USS Phoenix (an old USA ship from WWII that Argentina bought from the states, one that General MacArthur had been on – Jack, I freaked!!!) and how hard and diffcult it was, but so rewarding. He said that he left to serve a mission, as he felt he should. While he was gone, Argentina had the Fight de Islas Malvinas (Faulkin Islands) and his ship sunk. He talked about how life is hard, but when we look back, it was all worth it. He looked at me a few times when we said we shoudl not get dis-animated, but we should stay strong in the faith. I know it wasn´t happen-stance. The Lord was telling me, through Presidente, to have more faith in His work.
We watched a slideshow of fotos de bautismos from all the missionaries in the mission –when the one of Oscar and me and Hermana Oslen came up, Hermana Freeman tapped me on the back of my shoulder. I smiled and thanked Heavenly Father for this miracle in my life. Afterwards, we had sparkling soda (de pineapple instead of apple) and brindamos ¨Hacemos CHING-CHING!¨ haha for the new year. We had a light dinner and received stockings from la Familia Detlefsen.
HUGS!!!!! I´M SOOOO EXCITED TO TALK TO ALL OF YOU!!!!!!!!!!
I know my Savior was born of Mary and of God, in humble circumstances, to be the King, the Prince of Peace, and Forgive of all who would come unto Him. I love my Redeemer – and am forever grateful for his Atonement. After he suffered and died, he was resurrected the third day and lives today as our Savior. HE LIVES! I love celebrating this season! I am grateful for be His servant on the earth to bring His brother and sisters unto Him.
Also, Happy Birthday Joseph Smith on the 23rd! I know Joseph Smith the chosen vessel of the Lord to restore His church in this last dispensation of the fulness of times. I love Brother Joseph and revere his consecrated life!