So guess what?! Transfer calls came out and neither Sister Page nor I are moving!!! SO happy. :)
We have been trying to keep busy - turns out the holiday season is both good and bad for missionary work. Good because we can go around sharing "Christmas messages," but bad because more people are out of town, or just "busy." Oh well. :) Our zone had a fun finding idea, where every few days we meet up together and go caroling in someone's area. We use the church's pass along cards for "A Savior is Born" and look for opportunities to come back and share a Christmas message. So far it's been really fun, and people seem to be more open to that approach. :)
This past Sunday there was a homecoming talk for a sister in one of the wards we cover. She served in the New York, New York mission. She spent half her mission in Harlem. As she spoke, you could tell she had a really rough time, that the mission was a fiery furnace. She described the unkind words and actions directed towards her, and how in a city of millions, she had never felt so alone. And yet, she has also never felt so close to the Savior as during that time. So when people spit upon and mock and persecute us missionaries, whether figuratively or literally, we are experiencing a small portion of what Jesus Christ went through, and unlike His own experience, He will never leave us to bear it alone. And I can testify that that is all true.
We had a stake carol festival, with a couple hours of just musical performances by various groups. It was a fantastic experience! So many people came, even a lot of nonmembers from the community. It's always beautiful to see how the Christmas season brings people together from all walks of life, Christ is always a unifying influence for good. One of the songs sung was called "what if the cradle was empty." The song gave a beautiful reminder that if he hadn't been born, there would have been an empty cross. How grateful I am for this season of remembrance and celebration of our Savior Jesus Christ, knowing that because he was born, we can all be born again.
I hope you all have a good week and are enjoying the season!
Lots of love and prayers,
Sister Sarah Patterson