Monday, December 28, 2015

AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR TOO

What a week! Although we're a little tired because of all the stuff that happened, it was a really good week!

First off, we had our Mission Christmas Party on Tuesday! It was such a fun party, and I got to see Elder Price for the first time since he got here! I knew Elder Price from when I lived in Livermore. We were in the same ward. The best part is, we're both gingers. Which just makes it better. Also, my district put together a hilarious skit in which a pair of Elders contacted Santa Claus on Christmas Eve. Also, we had a really great training given by President and Sister Mathews. We watched the First Presidency's training video on the observance of the Sabbath Day. One thing that stuck out to me is when they said that the key point of the Sacrament is not to renew our baptismal covenants. It's to remember and to progress and become like Jesus Christ. We do renew our covenants as we do it, but our focus shouldn't be on being clean from our sins, but rather to work harder and do better to be like Him. Sister Mathews also gave us a training where she talked about a statue of Jesus Christ whose hand's had been blown off by a bombing in the city. Instead of replacing them, the citizens simply put a plaque there saying "You Are His Hands." How true is that? We are here to do His work on the Earth, and he is there to guide and direct us. In a very real way, we are His hands on this Earth.

On the same day, we had our Ward Christmas Party. It seemed like it would have been a lot of fun... the problem was that it was supposed to start at 7pm, but didn't really start until 9. We helped them to prepare for 2 hours, and then we had to go to get home by 9:30, so we weren't there for the actual party. Ah, well. Maybe some day they'll get things started on time here.

After that, it was smooth sailing until Christmas Day! We had our weekly planning that day, so we didn't leave in the morning, but after we called our families in the afternoon (which is always great, shoutout to my fam) we went out to teach. We were only able to teach our investigator Elton John's sister, Nadia. She's really cool, she has a great desire to be baptized but has to help her mom work on Sunday mornings. We're going to talk a bit with her about the observance of the Sabbath Day and things like that, but also our church's hour will move to 3pm next week, so hopefully she'll be better able to come to church and participate!

We ran into Andre finally on Saturday, where he confessed to us that he hasn't been doing very well with following the commandments. We had a pretty powerful lesson on repentance and that process. So he may need some time to work towards baptism again, but we have a lot of faith that he'll make it fairly soon, so stay tuned for that!

Well, other than that, it's just been a lot of work. We found a lot of new people that we're going to work with in these upcoming weeks, and we're looking forward to it!

Ooh, and before I forget, my district went to Cidade Velha today! It used to be the Capital of Cape Verde in the past, but now's just a pretty historic place with some forts and broken-down churches and cool stuff like that. President Mathews only lets missionaries go there once in their missions, so I tried to take a lot of pictures to keep the memory.

Well, that's all I have time for this week. See y'all next week! Have a Happy New Year! Hope 2016 treats ya well!

Abra├žo para todos,
Elder Penner










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