Good tidings! This is Elder Samis reporting from Clearbrook. There is much to talk about with Christmas being last week and the new year is well on the way. Not much happened worthy to report leading up to Christmas Eve except that I got my glasses taken care of. We also dropped off a bunch of gifts for the ward's secret Santa project.
On Christmas Eve we visited Tim and Sylvia. We played with Tim's old electric race car circuit for a while. At the end of our visit, they gave us each a really nice basket filled with a bunch of treats of all sorts. If there's one thing we got a lot of for Christmas this year, it was chocolate! For dinner we went to Sister Lougheed's place for a turkey dinner in Aldergrove. She brought a non-member friend named Bill whose been to church a few times, but says that he doesn't have any interest in learning from us. After that we went to the Hara's place where we hung out with a bunch of ward members and played Scrabble.
As soon as we woke up on the 25th we said our prayers and opened our presents. We studied and went to the Cervo's for a crape breakfast at 10:00am. Then came the moment most missionaries long for, making a Skype call home! :) I used the Cervo's computer to do it. What a cool feeling it was talking to my parents and my siblings face to face for the first time in 11 months! There's not much else quite like it! It didn't make me homesick at all even though it was a little hard to hang up once my time expired. After Elder Lamb finished up his call, we went with Bishop Vidal to contact a referral he gave us. We told him what our purpose was as missionaries. His name is Dan. He has a strong belief in Christ and he's willing to listen and keep an opened mind and learn even though he says that he won't become Mormon. After we made our calls we saw the Noftle family. For a gift they gave the 2 of us matching ties. From there we went to the Olson's for Christmas dinner at 3:00pm. Because Sister Olson is actually Bro. Noftle's sister, there was a big gathering of Noftles from Chilliwack and Abbotsford, all of them members of the church. Next up we went to the Kozak's place. We met Sister Kozak's father and younger sister there and we played the board game "Catan" in which I lost badly. It was my first time playing and there's no such thing as beginners luck when it comes to Elder Samis. To finish off what was a great Christmas Day, we visited Bishop Vidal at his home. He had the day off work so he wanted to come out with us to stop by some less active members the next day.
On boxing day we did just that! We saw several less active families and members. Our bishop is just so awesome! President Burt called us in the afternoon and said that he wanted to come over from Richmond to have an interview with everyone in the district. He took us out to eat at Wendy's first! Speaking to President Burt is a lot like talking to your father. He's very loving and its easy to talk to him.
Saturday was great! We contacted a potential the YSA sisters gave us named Gary. He's native and had somehow lost part of his right arm. We taught him the restoration and he's really intrigued by everything. He's Catholic and doesn't really see too many differences between them and the Mormons' beliefs. He's having some struggles but wants to change. A few hours after the lesson, we got invited to come to a pizza dinner party for the 12-14 year old youth at the Taylor's place and he suggested that we bring Devin and Nolan to it. We stopped by about an hour before the start to invite both of them but Devin wasn't up for it. We answered some questions Nolan had from things he learned at church and had a mini lesson before the party. The party itself was a lot of fun. We played board games and Nolan really seemed to have a good time!
Sadly, Nolan couldn't make it out to church on Sunday but Gary and Raj did. Gary loved church and the lesson that the sister missionaries taught in Sunday school. He said that he for sure wanted to come next week. Well, as I have named these events, I truly have been graetful for them, especially at this time of the year. It was hinted during our interviews with our president that there was a chance that Elder Lamb and I will be leaving the area after this transfer. I have loved being here but I almost feel like perhaps a change would be best... If so I'll sure miss the ward. Without their help, things just wouldn't be the same. Clearbrook has been a tougher proselyting area then Nanaimo, but there is still much to be grateful for. May you all enjoy the rest of the Christmas season and achieve your new years resolutions! Cheers to 2015!
Elder Maclean Samis