Monday, 26 December 2016

Christmas Day

Dec 25 2016 Christmas in a far away land, without a tree or any decorations except a small nativity. It felt unusual at first, but as the day went on , it felt like a very similar Christmas as home. First of all, this week we were able to help the Dutch organization, Regina Patis, with several things. On Monday we helped them with creating food hampers for about 200 people in the Chișinău area, then helped with the distribution of the bags of food, each weighing close to 20 kilos. There will be pictures about this, we were given 10 food hampers to distribute and we did this following helping them distribute the assigned hampers. It was interesting and gratifying, just cant say enough about these Dutch people and their generosity. Ruslan Stepanenco helped me on Tuesday to distribute a few and then we went to a nice older man in Dancu on Wednesday. It made Christmas more real, helping those in need and the need was truly great. Imagine a pension of $40 a month- to us from the west, almost inimaginable, yet that is their reality. This same organization was taking donations at 2 large stores here as well on Dec 24 of non perishable food items. Amazing people.   I had the chance to set up Skyping for our new Armenian missionary this week, we had to connect with Madrid MTC, it was not trouble free, but we did get things working. Elder Sargsyan speaks Armenian and a little Russian, so it is interesting. Yesterday we had a combined branch Christmas get together, program in Russian, songs in Romanian, sorry, I am very partial to Romanian songs, just do not like the Russian language sung. My bias, I admit it. Monotone missionaries do not help. Anyway, much food was served and we did help with that. Today we had an assigned program of scripture reading and song, it was very nice and only an hour long. We were to have 6 missionaries and the Stepanencos over for lunch, it morphed into a large YSa dinner as well and our small intimate lunch grew into well over 20 people or so. It was loud, it was rambunctious, it was just like a family dinner at home for us. Except there was no dispute over dishes, they all jumped in to do them. We got all the missionaries skyped as well, so it was a good time. Instead of turkey, we had KFC chicken we had bought the night before, as well as baked potatoes and lots of baking. As always , enough food. No one wanted to leave, I guess that was a success. We expect a quiet week or two with the mixed up Christmas here, but will manage. Oh, FHE this week was making gingerbread houses, we had no gingerbread so we used large cookies instead, went very well.
The next few pictures show the gathering of the food and the making of the hampers, all at our Church. this is Sister Sterrett, Deb and Elder Green moving food.

Ruslan with oranges

There were many hands involved in making up the hampers

These are heavy duty Dutch bags.

Elder Lemon is very intent on telling Elder Tita something important

We are moving the bags to vans for distribution, it was a cold day.

It was amazing how much adults enjoyed making houses with cookies and candy

Sister Lee, Schow, Nina and Mariana

Adriana and Chiril are very intent as well

Elder Blaylock got into it, Elder Griffeth just got into the candy

Mariana and Nina proud, it is held up by being absolutely stuffed with candy. 

So it was a good week, we are almost through Christmas, one dinner at our house and then Monday a Moldova dinner for all the missionaries- let me tell you that having a dinner on a non American holiday was a huge compromise for most.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Elder and Sister Edwards, My son is Elder Griffeth. I love reading your blog and seeing all the pictures! It is such a treat for us! Elder Griffeth does a pretty good job in his emails home telling us what he is doing, but your blog has painted a much bigger and better picture for us. It is so fun to read! Thank you for all you do to help my son and the other missionaries. Even though I have not met you, I have much love and appreciation for you both. Thank you again! Oh, and I laughed when I read the part about the monotone Russian songs! Oh dear, I can hear my son now! He tries hard. I will be laughing about it all day! Love Sister Patrea Griffeth