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Sunday, December 1, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

I want to wish everyone a belated happy Thanksgiving.  This was our first and only Thanksgiving out in the Mission field.  We had a lovely Thanksgiving dinner for the Missionaries on Tuesday.  I helped Sister Gartz in preparing the meal.  I cooked a turkey and made stuffing.  I had to improvise on the stuffing, as I couldn't find any sage.  I found a poultry seasoning with sage in it.  I thought it tasted pretty good.  Elder Gubler went down to the church to attend a District Meeting with the missionaries while I stayed at the apartment.  We cook with propane and I'm not use to it yet.  In Suriname we had a bigger tank than here.  Nevertheless, I ran out of propane during the cooking.  Our landlord left us an extra tank, but it was also empty.  I tried calling Elder Gubler, but no answer.  Dinner was being served in two hours and I still had 1 1/2 hours left on the turkey.  Luckily, I caught my neighbor who was just leaving and she gave me her extra tank of propane.  Oh how I miss my kitchen.  The dinner was good and it was fun being with the Missionaries.  They are great.  As I have said before, the best part of our mission are the Missionaries.  We had all the normal food that is served.  The Missionaries brought the desserts and we even had pumpkin pie.  Elder Schroeder actually cooked a pumpkin and made pumpkin pie.  It was pretty good.  He told us later that he didn't even have measuring cups or spoons.  I was very impressed.

On the actual Thanksgiving day (Thursday) we went with two Elders to Soufriere  It is a beautiful village down by the Pitons.  There currently aren't any Missionaries in that area.  The two that were there were moved to Castries.  It takes a little over an hour to get there.  The roads are very narrow and windy, up and down mountain passages.  The last time we took the Elders there, our borrowed car got a flat tire and also broke down on the way back.  This time we took the brand new car.  The Missionaries taught three discussions to different people.  There was a 27 year old gal that has been searching for a church that answered all her questions.  She has been very impressed with the message, saying she has never heard anything like that before.  She has visited numerous churches and has felt that there is something else out there.  As of now, President Mehr has said that the Castries Branch needs to grow more before opening up that area again.  In other areas where there isn't a Church, the Missionaries hold Sunday Meetings in their apartment which are called group meetings.  We were hoping to do that in Soufriere, but more work needs to be done in Castries.

Today was the last Sunday for the Gartz'.  They leave next Saturday.  Elder Gartz was acting as a Branch President for the Castries Branch.  A local member, Brother Debeauville, was called as Branch President.  President Mehr came out and set him apart.  Since this area is small, President Mehr is the Ecclesiastical leader over the two branches.  He has asked us to oversee these two branches and make sure they are operating properly.  He has asked us to train the members in the different organizations.  So our time here will be split between Castries and Vieux Fort. 

The Christmas season has started here in St. Lucia.  The shops are decorated and Christmas music is playing.  It is a little strange because it is so hot.  Elder and Sister Gartz gave us a small Christmas tree, so I will put that up shortly.  It will be nice having our own Island to work in.  We are looking forward to working with the members and getting to know them better.  As Thanksgiving has passed, I am so thankful for so many things.  Mostly my family and my Savior, Jesus Christ.  I miss you all very much and am so grateful for all that you do for us while we are out here.   We love you all very much and hope that you all enjoy this coming month as we celebrate the birth of our Savior.     


Thanksgiving dinner

Thanksgiving dinner

Thanksgiving dinner

Baptism yesterday

Elder & Sister Gartz
Sister Gartz is wearing a St. Lucia
native dress.  Their last Sunday

Poinsettia tree outside our apartment.

Our view

Some more of our view.

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