Called To Serve


Sunday, December 23, 2012


A blog entry is well past due!  Unfortunately, we had no new missionaries come to our mission this last transfer because none of the missionaries that were to come were able to get their visas.  So, I suppose I forgot that I could still do a blog entry!  My life seems to revolve around our transfers every 6 weeks, so if that doesn't happen, I completely get out of my routine!

These past 6 weeks have been busy, nonetheless, and we anxiously await the arrival of a FEW of those missionaries who were to come at the end of November.  We have learned that 4 of our visa waiters have now received their visas so on January 7, we will greet them with open arms!!

What a fun, busy, action-packed  past 2 weeks we have had!  Our next zone conferences were scheduled to be held in January, but we decided to move those conferences up into December so we could acknowledge and celebrate Christmas with our missionaries.  Our missionaries work so hard all year long, so we wanted to give them a nice break, plus find a way for them to feel the spirit of Christmas within the comforts of a HOME rather than some cultural hall!  The area authorities for Mexico gave us guidelines to follow.  They requested that we NOT gather the entire mission together for one big event.  We were told that we could join 2-3 zones together, if we choose, or one zone at a time, but never at any ONE time are we to ALL gather together!  So, this is what we decided to do!

We have six zones.  We decided to do each zone, one at a time, at our mission home.  Our home is not large enough to do more than one zone at a time.  So, we scheduled for December 11, 12, and 13 and December 18, 19, and 20th to have each of our six zones in, one at a time.  On each day we did the following:

10:00 AM-Arrival at mission home

Krispy Kreme Donuts, Fruit Cup, Juices, and Chocolate Milk served upon arrival

10:20 or so- Business portion of Zone Conference
  • Zone Photos
  • Birthday Recognition-basket with baked goodies to choose from (Large brownie, mini loaf of banana bread, or large M&M Cookie)
  • Extraordinary Missionary follow up-award clementine to any missionary who has been exercising faithfully and eating nutritiously and economically!)

Fuertes Zone

Amalucan Zone

La Paz Zone

La Libertad

Tlaxcala Zone

Chiautempan Zone

Christmas Caroling with homemade chimes (Trudy's), piano, and sing-a-long.  Lots of fun and laughs as we have tried to sing 12 Days of Christmas in Spanish and divide into groups and each number stands and sings when their turn!

Ralph conducting the music as the missionaries play our homemade chimes!

Playing our homemade chimes!

Discussion lead by Ralph on Christ-Who is He?  What is his role?  How do we "receive" Him?  How do we "accept"the atonement in our lives?

Each district (3 in each zone) to perform for 15 minutes.  This can be anything from singing a Christmas carol to acting out a play, etc.  LOTS OF FUN and LAUGHS!!

One of our districts performing!

Very talented district doing the can-can in step!!

This is where some of the missionaries are standing behind the backdrop and putting their arms in the sleeves, and the faces of the missionaries that we see have their arms in the legs with shoes on their hands.  This was hilarious as they danced to a Christmas medley!

The entire district...those behind the scenes as well!! (A district from La Paz)

A skit from one of Amalucan's districts...A mix between Christmas and Lehi's family and missionary work!  Notice the sword of "Laban" looking like a missionary tie...Sword of Santa...with Nephi (an elf) trying to convince Santa that he needs to take the gifts with him!  "Not on your life, says Santa!  Very funny skit!
One of the many fun skits each district put on!

A skit the Hermanas were in!

Another district performing

Another district!

Yet, another district!
And...another district!

Feliz Navidad--These two elders are at the piano playing Feliz Navidad on the piano and the Melodica.  Unfortunately I did not capture a still shot picture with the melodica, but the elder in the background is playing that instrument and the elder in the front is at the piano.  They are looking over at their "band" as ALL of them are playing the song, "Feliz Navidad!  It was so cute!!

The rest of the band playing Feliz Navidad--guitar and drums, using a bucket and tin lid!!

BUNKO with prizes, etc.  They LOVED it!!!

Head table starts and ends the game with the jingle bells!

Adding up their scores!
Christmas dinner served-
Ham, Baked potato with sour cream and/or butter, Carrot/Pea mixture, Broken Glass Jello, homemade rolls, Costco pies and cheesecakes

Amalucan Zone
Tlaxcala Zone

Fuertes Zone

Feeling a nap coming on after eating a large dinner!

Gather back in livingroom around Christmas tree to give out gifts that are under the tree

Gifts wrapped up and ready to open!!

Some of the Hermanas opening up their gifts...homemade scarves that I made for each of the missionaries to wear around their necks when it is cold outside!
Some of these elders trying to figure out how to wear their new scarves!
Posing in their new scarves!
Everyone leaves

The HONOR of being awarded the "Sword of Santa!"  This is a sword the Elders made for a skit!  I think they think the president needs a sword as he has tried to change the culture somewhat from where it had been!  The missionaries are grateful for the changes, so I think it was a compliment for him to become the keeper of the sword!  

Clean up begins, preparation for the next day starts over!! Gifts under tree, making broken glass jello salad, etc.

Well, that's how we've spent our last few weeks!  I've been busy preparing for this event.  All of the missionaries seemed to have a great time!  I love doing things for our missionaries.  They are very appreciative and helpful!  It was fun to get together with one zone at a time.  It is such a nice way to get to know each of the missionaries at a more personal level.

Feliz Navidad!  Feliz Navidad!  We want to wish you a very merry Christmas from the bottom of our hearts!  This IS our Christmas card this year!  None of you have been taken off of our list!  We have no list this year or for the next three years!!  We hope this finds all of you well and happy!  May we remember the "reason for the season."  So many do NOT!!  At this time of much turmoil and tragedy, it is evident that the world NEEDS the message that God lives and that Jesus is the Christ who was born to save us all!  He was born as a babe in humble circumstances, but NEVER would there be a birth more significant.  He came to earth so that we might have joy, both in this life and throughout eternity! May we find a way to share this message, as there are MANY seeking peace, joy, and purpose and meaning in their lives.