Week 18. Merry Christmas!!

Hello everyone!!  MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

Bell Choir in the Visitors' Center

Bell Choir in the Visitors’ Center

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. Ours was crazy, busy, wonderful, amazing, and full of blessings.
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This last week, we had a small miracle (but a miracle nonetheless!). We found another potential investigator! We were walking around in one of our neighborhoods and saw a house where, we realized, we had never seen lights on before. So we knocked on the door and a woman came out and tried to politely shut us down. She is a member, was raised in the church, but just wasn’t interested. We were about to cordially wish her a good night and Merry Christmas when her grandson (about 6 or 7 yrs old) popped his head out the door and said, bluntly, “Who are you?” I said, “We’re missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. And then her granddaughter (about 15 years old) came out and said, “Hey, that’s the church I go to.” A few more minutes of conversation revealed she’s been going for about 8 months but hasn’t been baptized! We asked her about it and she said, “Yeah, I’ve been thinking about it (baptism).” She said she is really interested in learning more before she makes a decision about whether or not to be baptized and by George, that’s exactly what we are here for!!  We got her phone number and she got ours and we are going to try to see her very soon!  Miracle.   It was a good day.  We didn’t have the car that day, so we had to walk around in our area to contact and visit people. I have gained a testimony of walking as a missionary. We talk to more people, we talk to each other more instead of staring off at opposite parts of the horizon and never really getting to know or care about one another, and we are led more easily by the Spirit. It’s marvelous.
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Anyway, that just began a week of wonderful things. Tuesday was Christmas Eve and we got to spend time with the other missionaries in our district to play some board games. That was fun! And then Christmas morning rolled around. We got up at 6:30 am, like normal, and opened presents together.
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Our Christmas Tree.  People have been very good to us.

Our Christmas Tree. People have been very good to us.

We were blessed to have quite a few gifts to open. People have been very good to us and both of us received amazing packages from our families.

Later in the morning, we celebrated the day with the sisters in the VC. We opened Secret Santa gifts and had a White Elephant exchange. I got a really nice Christmas music CD, among other things. Mostly, I just cherished the gift of being with good friends while celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.
All the Visitors' Center Sisters

All the Visitors’ Center Sisters

We got to watch Despicable Me 2, which is quite adorable, and I saw the first half of Polar Express. I’ve never seen that movie and it was frankly charming.
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I got to video chat with my parents in the early afternoon. That was by far my favorite Christmas present of all time. It was good to see their faces and hear their voices, and I even got to see my dog!! COLSETTE! It was so good. Just truly, truly… good.
Video Chatting on Christmas Day

Video Chatting with my parents on Christmas Day

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We then watched The Lion King, as a district, and played another board game. It was a great way to end the day.
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Well, life is good, friends. And I am loving what I am doing and who I am and what is happening. I wouldn’t give any of this back, even the hard days, and I am blessed on a regular basis.
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Before, I sign off, I just want to tell you…  I’m most grateful for the reason we are even celebrating anything this season: Our Savior. My most precious possession is my testimony of Jesus Christ. He lives. He was born and lived that He might show us the way Home, love us, teach us, and help us to strengthen one another. I love Him. I testify that He is the Christ, the Savior and Redeemer of the World, and that through Him, and through Him alone, we can find peace in this life and eternal joy in the life to come. I know this and it is my privilege to be His representative as a missionary for a short 18 months. I pray that I will never forget why I am really here, on a mission, and that I will continue to work to learn to love like He did.
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I love you all. I cannot express enough thanks for who you are for me and for all you do for me.
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Much love,
Sister Hansen
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P.S. Happy New Year!! And, I know it’s after Christmas, but I wanted to share my favorite Christmas video so far. The message is one that can be applied year-round:
What Shall We Give?

What Shall We Give?

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