Every week when I sit down at the computer and stare at this blank email and think back to what happened in a week, it baffles me by how quickly time goes by! And I cannot believe Christmas is already here! What a great time to be a missionary and get to share with people more about Jesus Christ! I think I have the best job/calling in the whole world!
On Monday we had a great lesson with Erica where we talked about who Jesus Christ is and the importance of having faith in Him. We watched Finding Faith in Christ (29min video)
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By the end, the Spirit was strong and Erica in tears. She received much personal revelation that night as many questions were answered.
Tuesday was P-day/new missionaries arrived. We had 6 Elders and 3 Sisters come out. They are great! We picked them up and went back to the Mission Home (where President and Sister Sorensen live, which is about 10 minutes from where we live) to eat and have a testimony meeting. As President interviewed them one-on-one, Elder Parkinson and I role-played (the usual routine) and were impressed by how much they learned in the MTC - their teaching skills.
Wednesday we drove them to Kirtland where we went on a tour with the Community of Christ in the Kirtland Temple, then over to the Kirtland Historical Sites (owned by the LDS church) where the missionaries consecrate their missions in the School of Prophets. At transfer meeting, there was a request for Elder Bills and I to play/sing our Redeemer of Israel song (I'll get a copy and send it home soon) and we did. It went well, President says our best yet. All the Sisters were crying. etc. etc. It was fun needless to say :) After the transfer meeting we went back to the Mission Home, this time with the Elders and Sisters going home (4 Elders, 10 Sisters!). Had a testimony meeting and while President interviewed the missionaries one-on-one missionaries packed, played the piano and sang, filled out some papers, and basically just hung out. It's important during this time that Elder Parkinson and I don't get distracted/trunky! ;)
Thursday 8 of the 10 Sisters and 1 Elder's parents came to pick them up at the mission home (usually they just fly home). So we had to be there as all these families reunited for the first time in 1 1/2 to 2 years and take their pictures. It was torture for us, but we're alive. haha. The rest of the week was a normal missionary week. Taught some investigators, taught a few people who haven't been to church in along time, eat dinner with some members, did some service in a Barn and in a recently-reactivated members home (we're helping him install wood flooring). We also attended a Baptism yesterday so that Erica could see what it's like. I interviewed the mother and daughter being baptized and passed them, so it was nice to be able to be there for the ordinance. It was a powerful baptism, one that many have been praying about for a long, long time.
Last night the Cleveland Stake (which covers from Sandusky, Ohio to Garfield Heights/Parma area) had a Christmas Musical Fireside. They've been practicing for months and did an amazing job! There was one cello/piano duet that was just phenomenal - I wish I had filmed it! Erica came with her son and her younger sister. It was fun to see her with her family. Today we'll be eating dinner with some members (the Hooks) and Erica and tomorrow we have our Christmas Mission Conference. We will be going to the Kirtland Temple like last year for the morning piece and will eat and finish our meeting in the Kirtland Stake Center (which is just down the road). I will be conducting tomorrow's meeting and will be speaking in next week's meeting. I don't quite have my talk written yet, I'll tell more about it when I figure it out! It'll be on Christ, Mary, Joseph, the Shepherds, and possibly the Wise Men - who the characters in the Nativity really are. But I have yet to collect my thoughts, have just been doing a lot of reading and studying.
Sorry I don't have more to report on! It was just one of those busy, not-too-much-proselyting-time weeks :( But this next week should be good, and I'll write more then. Have a great week! And here's a great talk that Ashley Holt emailed me last year that I read the other day: http://lds.org/ensign/1977/12/maybe-christmas-doesnt-come-from-a-store?lang=eng&query=maybe+christmas+doesn't+come+store I like it a lot. Have a great week! Love you all!
We all came out together and we're all Zone Leaders/AP.