“Far, far away on Judea’s plains,
Shepherds of old heard the joyous strains…
Peace on earth, goodwill to men;
Sweet are these strains of redeeming love,
Message of mercy from heav’n above:
Lord, with the angels we too would rejoice;
Help us to sing with the heart and voice:
Hasten the time when, from ev’ry clime,
Men shall unite in the strains sublime”
Alright! Feliz Natal! I am super happy to wish you all a Happy Holiday Season! Thank you all for the love and Support that you give me every day! You are all very special to me.
Here in Juiz de Fora, we are experiencing a LOT of rain. AKA our apartment is flooding LOL! After walking for 30 seconds in the rain, we get SOAKED. So I’m dreamin’ of a “Wet” Christmas? I think so! Here in Brazil, a common tradition is for kids to set their shoes next to the door and on Christmas morning the children awake to see that “Papai Noel” filled their shoes with goodies and candies. Last year I missed out on a great Brazilian Christmas treat that is called “Rabanada.” It is heavenly! I mean it is the closest thing to cinnamon rolls that this part of the world has to offer!
This week I got to talk to Adriano that we baptized here in April this year. He has been working on Sundays ever since I was transferred. I am going to try and work with him so that he can come back into full activity in the Church. Other than that we are trying really hard to get a good teaching pool. I have faith and know that the Lord blesses us when we do everything that we can, and then try to give just a tad more.
Our mission Christmas Party on Tuesday was AMAZING! It went perfectly. The Christmas talks by President and Sister Cascardi were great and I think that I did a decent job talking to the entire mission as well. The highlights from the Party were the Lunch and the Musical presentation. The food was SO good! There was turkey and stuffing! Mashed potatoes! And rice and Beans. Each zone prepared a musical number for the afternoon session, some Missionaries sang great! Others sang from the heart, but somewhere between the heart and the mouth things got complicated. I got to sing “O Holy Night” with Elder Pimentel accompanying on the piano. It was SO difficult for me to sing that one. I don’t know why, I have done dozens of concerts before the mission, but it was nerve racking to be in front of the whole mission and singing. That being said, I think it was fine. I sat down after and President Cascardi put his arm around me and gave me great compliments; great party, great day. And the mission had a really high baptizing week!
This will be my last Christmas that I will be serving as a Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know that Christmas in the mission field is sacred. I think of what Christ would do on his birthday. Most likely he would do the same things that he did every other day of His life. That is; strengthen the weak, visit the sick and afflicted, raise up the sad and broken hearted, and proclaim His Eternal Gospel. What a great opportunity that we have to follow His steps and do the same! Let’s make this Christmas sacred, let’s follow Christ’s steps and offer Him our Heart. The Spirit of Christmas is the Holy Ghost. It was Him that led the wise men to the Christ-Child. It is the Spirit that will guide all of us to Christ this Christmas because He lives!
Elder Topper Yost