It was so great to skype with some of you on Christmas and to talk on the phone and to received so many beautiful Christmas cards and notes. We had a wonderful Christmas even though we missed you terribly. As you know, the Sisters had a “sleep over” Christmas Eve. They planned our evening from having Chicken Noodle Soup in Bread bowls, to Christmas Caroling and delivering a few gifts. I had not made bread bowls before and since I could not find any at the store, miraculously our Wal-Mart had some Rhodes frozen bread dough. Even more amazing it has the directions for bread bowls on the package. They looked great and it was fun to have our soup that way. Dinner was at 5:00. Christmas Caroling was from 6:00 to 8:00. It started out shaky as the first home on the list, no one was home, but the second house and every house thereafter was so thrilled to have the four of us on their porch singing Christmas Carols. The Sisters have lovely voices, so our little choir sounded very “heavenly”. Our last house was Betty and Roy. Roy was almost speech-less. He said he had never had someone come and sing to him on Christmas. Roy and Betty are a black couple who joined the church about 5 years ago. They are the sweetest most humble people. His conversion (in short) was do to his reading of the scriptures and knowing that “Jesus came straight way out of the water” He had joined several churches and when it came to baptism, they said, yes they knew it should be by immersion, but with children and old people, it was just easier to “sprinkle” When the missionaries came by his home, he had a lot of company and asked if they would come some other time. As they left, he said, “How do you baptize?” They said “By immersion”. He said, “Come back tomorrow.”
At 8:00 we started our Christmas Eve Program. First we read the Christmas Story from Luke. Sister Olson had selected songs for us to sing interspersed in the reading. Then Sister Williams read a wonderful Christmas Story by Elder Anderson. A family in the Branch had been doing the 12 days of Christmas, so they brought the final night to our house, so we had that little excitement too. Several of the Branch members brought us gifts and treats during the evening, so we felt very loved.
We want to thank each of you for your love and support as we have served here in Camden. We know that you have missed doing some of our traditions and our get-togethers and that you look forward to our return. Our Branch members also thank you for your support in our being here. Senior Couples do help out in these little branches and give them strength and encouragement.
I think about our ward at home and although they too are looking forward to our return....we are NOT NEEDED there. Senior Missionaries couples are NEEDED in the Mission Field.
We so are blessed that we took the opportunity to Serve the Lord and some of His children for this time.
Love to each of you. Hope you all have a wonderful New Year’s Eve celebration.
Love you so very much. Grandma and Grandpa
To our Children and Grandchildren: We wish you could have been with us when we delivered the pictures that you put together on Thanksgiving. We delivered them to twelve homes and the joy and the tears and the appreciation they had, to finally have a beautifully framed Temple, Proclamation or Living Christ and to know that it came from you with your love. (Y’all) We are sure that they will be a treasured gift and testimony in their homes.