Elder Sargeant here, just wanted to fill you in on our Christmas adventures.
Let's start off with the beginning of the week. One of the most exciting parts of the mission for me is trying to come up with ideas that get the missionaries together..... I fail epically at it. That's why we have other missionaries who organize DISTRICT CAROLING!!! So,we went up to my old stomping grounds to do some caroling with the missionaries in the North of Tasmania. We went around to members, investigators, and others around the area. Some of the missionaries got members involved to play guitar, harmonica, drums, and ukulele. It was full on. We sang a few songs and had a blast the whole night. Christmas eve, as missionaries, is the time to go out and smash as many lessons with investigators and others as possible. That's what we were going to do... but we did an interview for a baptism with a Chinese guy named Eric Wei! HE IS THE MAN!!!!
So, to say "hello, how are you?" You say something along the lines of: Nee-how Ma?
But... Elder Iliffe said a different phrase. It was the first thing he said to Eric when he sat down to chat with him and instead if translated as "Hello, you're beautiful."
CRACK UP AS!!! They laughed for a bit.
So, Christmas eve we got given 4.4 lbs of CHOCOLATE. WHAT THE HECK!!!!
Next day,---basketball. --- Breakfast 1----Dowes ---Breakfast 2 --Jury family ---Lunch 1 with the Blackwells ---lunch 2 with the Evans ---basketball.
On top of that we took photos of all our goodies in a pile. It's impressive so don't be too jealous.
My favourite miracle was Christmas Eve when we went to see a new family we've been teaching known as the Fraser Family. They have 7 total---Phil, Tasha, (kids -->) Julia 15, Bruce 7, Elizabeth (3-4?), Miriam 2, and then Samuel who's like 2 months or something. We had a great lesson with them and taught them about the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Spirit was SO strong and they were so keen to listen... ON CHRISTMAS EVE. Great great family. They know what's important ;) We invited them to be baptised and Phil + Julia said Definitely! Tasha is working through some things. She knows that if it's true she will be so we'll help her find her answers. NExt day, they looked up all the commandments and we had a chat with them about those commandments a few days later. They came to church and loved it! I WAS GUTTED TO LEAVE!!!!!!!!
Phil said he was praying that I'd stay a bit longer since we'd built up this relationship. :\ Sad day..
By the way, I'm being transferred. Did I mention? Where? I don't know. Promised land 2 I hope.
But saying goodbye was hard. Many people gave me hugs, which was strange at first but you embrace the old ladies and accept it. You can't deny people happiness. Tears were shed by the Blackwells and that was really sad... I've never felt so much love from people in my life. I've never been able to have that much impact before, and I don't feel like I even did that much. It goes to show... happiness is not found in cars, money, or riches... but in time spent with people. Love can't be bought---only expressed, given, shared, and accepted.
Well, I must depart. Gotta go to the airport! I'll attach some photos.
Have a HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!
Mum--- it was awesme talking to you and Dan! :) I missed your guts.
Eric Blackwell + Me