December 29, 2009
Hola!! Wowie! This week was packed with Christmas spirit! To start off…we showed Joy to the World in Spanish at the church Monday night…Elva, Rueben, Omar, Angel, Cilvia and her family and others came to watch. I love that film because it focuses on why Christmas is important..to celebrate Christ’s birth! The crazy snow storm this week prohibited us from having our Wednesday night Gospel Principles Class. We got so much snow this week! I will be talking more about that later in the letter. We had a fun district meeting on Christmas Eve! Our Zone leaders dressed up as Santa and Elves..we laughed our heads off! We also had an activity where we taught the Restoration of the Gospel while using props. My prop was an umbrella, and I needed to connect umbrellas to prophets. I said that God knows the “forecast” and can provide us with the help we need to shield us from the evil storms of life…Prophets are a protection that Heavenly Father provides in each dispensation. I am so thankful for the guidance of our Prophet today, Thomas S. Monson. Christmas Eve was amusing because we had a fiesta at the church with Spanish members and investigators. Not many people came because the snow was pretty dangerous to drive in! But Omar, Eddy, Ignacio, Hermana Florez, Nefi, Melissa’s kids and the missionaries were there. We had a good time hitting the piñata! I crushed it! What satisfaction! Candy flying everywhere! J
Christmas was an intense adventure! Earlier in the week we had gone shopping with Amanda to help her buy Christmas presents for her kids. They had never had a Christmas, so we wanted to help her out. My parents helped out because I didn’t really need anything for Christmas. So we wrapped all these presents and stockings in our apartment and but them in bags like Santa bags. On Christmas morning the Hermanas and I opened up presents we got from each other and some we had gotten from our families… the snow was so bad no one was driving but we were determined to go to Amanda’s and deliver the presents…our little red car made it to her house after getting stuck twice. We were lucky! The Zone leaders met us there and were dressed up as Santa and Elves…us Hermanas wearing reindeer antlers. It was great! We woke up the kids and they each sat on Santa’s lap and opened presents. They were so surprised and thankful for their Christmas! I am thankful to have shared that experience with their kids..so thanks to my family for helping out! After opening presents, we helped Amanda make pancakes to have a breakfast feast! I love her family so much; they are like my family. Amanda will be getting married soon and we got her and Carlos an Olive Garden gift card to go out to eat after. They have never been there and always have wanted to go. After Amanda’s we went to the Widdison’s house with the other Elders and played Apples to Apples. That game is entertaining! Bompy has been writing me and telling me about it and I finally experienced it! Later that afternoon, we went to Hermana Florez’s house to eat lunch and call our families! That was so neat talking to my family; felt like we didn’t lose a beat…talking baby talk with Mom and Nanny, getting all the news about volleyball from my dad, talking to Bompy about cooking…I got to call my mommy and my daddy. Luckily both were with other family members so I got to talk to lots of people! I love my family so much and really appreciate all they have done for me. I committed my mommy to read the Book of Mormon and receive missionary lessons. I really want the blessing of the Gospel to be shared with my family. I know that the Book of Mormon is true and is another testament of Christ…I challenge all to read it and ask Heavenly Father if it is true! I will see my family in a year! I promised Bompy that I will help a lot with next the next Christmas dinner, since I like to cook now. My Christmas was way good!
Well, we totally got snowed in the day after Christmas…day full of studying, sleeping, writing letters, playing cards…Church was even cancelled on Sunday because of the snow, so the Elders came over to our apartment and blessed the Sacrament so we could take it. That was nice of them. We sang a few hymns and had a Spiritual thought.
Transfers are coming up Thursday…us Hermanas are driving to Des Moines tomorrow and I will get my new companion Thursday morning. I am so excited to meet her and serve with her. It’ll be nice to start fresh with a new transfer and set new goals. I hope that I can train her well and be a good example to her! She will teach me a lot too. I am grateful for having these two weeks to serve with Hermana Reese and Jordan because both have taught me more as well. I will serve with both probably after I train Hermana Mcguire…we will see! We have lots of work to still get done here in Sioux City. We have baptismal dates for this month and have found new investigators to teach. I really want to make the Spanish in our ward stronger..eventually they can have a branch! It’s fun to see where other missionaries go for transfers as well. I talked to Elder Holman and he might be moved into my Zone. Thatd be crazy! I know one of my Zone Leaders, Elder Blanchard is transferring to another zone. He has been here this whole time in Sioux City with me! Crazy!
I have seen many miracles of Heavenly Father in the work this week; He is able to guide us missionaries through the Holy Ghost and put us in places where there are people in need of the Gospel. We had a house we needed to contact and the lady, Maria, was never home. We drove by her house on one of the snowy days this week…looked like no one was home but I had an impression that we needed to go knock. So we got out of the car and knocked and she was there! We shared the first lesson with her and are returning to her house this week-end. She really enjoyed the lesson and wants us to teach all of her children. The Plan of Salvation will bring her much peace, because her husband passed away, and she will learn that he is in the Spirit World right now learning about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and she can do the necessary ordinances for him in the Temple! What a blessing! Yesterday we had to stop at a gas station to go to the bathroom…Heavenly Father totally put Jamie and Francisco in our path. They were prior investigators who we had lost touch with. I reinvited them to learn and felt much satisfaction to know things are ok with them. Jim is a cool story! We contacted him on Christmas Eve when he was shoveling outside..gave him some pamphlets but didn’t get his contact information. We wished we had. Well, last night we were at a house we needed to contact, but they weren’t home. The house across the street has lights on and I felt an impression that we should go knock. Well we knocked and it was totally Jim’s house! That was so exciting to know that Heavenly Father was guiding us to Jim again! He is totally being prepared to accept the Gospel. We invited him and his family to come to church and gave their contact info to the Elders to go and teach. Elder Jones is really excited about it. I know that Heavenly Father guides us missionaries to find those that are prepared, we just have to be willing to act on the impression we feel!
I am so thankful for this Gospel and for the happiness it brings into my life. I am grateful for the chance to share it with people and help them feel Heavenly Father’s love in their lives. I know its true and we can become closer to Christ through His church. I love all of you and my prayers are with you! Have a happy new year! Happy birthday Lizzy and Jilly. Love you both lots!
Love Hermana Murphy