Monday, 26 December 2011

Sun. December 25, 2011

We attended a one hour sacrament meeting at Halandri Branch.  It was a musical sacrament meeting with only a short comment from the 1st Counsellor and singing the hymns and carols was really sweet and enjoyable.  It was good that all the missionaries (some of those posted in the Athens area and all that came down from Thessaloniki) attended because there were only about 7 of the Branch members that came - our dear members have such a hard time with their families because of their choice to join the church, so they feel obligated to spend time with their families on occasions such as this.  The Orthodox church is so imbedded in their lives that it makes missionary work very difficult.  We see a softening though - probably because of the troubles they have been experiencing they are being humbled.  Anyway, after that meeting - we dashed back here to cook up 15 kilos of green beans to take down to the Acropoli Branch by 1:00 p.m. where we expected to feed anywhere between 70 - 125 people.  Acropoli is the CES Young Adult Branch and there are a lot of needy people there, so they were invited to come for Christmas dinner and bring their friends.  In the end we fed about 75, plus the missionaries.  That was done and cleaned up by around 3:30 and by then most of the "guests" gone - then  about 15-20 missionaries and senior couples went out the front of the church facility, (the facility is in the middle of a row of establishments, all one building - and looks quite ordinary from the small entrance, but the church has done it's magic inside and it is a very nice "meeting house, on four floors) and into the cold, and sang carols to passers-by for about 45 mins. (not me though - I was freezing and stood just inside the door and watched (wimpy me!).   Then we all went "home" - but, because we were hosting a sr. couple from Thessaloniki, the fun continued.  The Assts. came by to make their Christmas Skype/phone calls and Elder & Sis. Collier got our their Nerf guns (yes, that's what I said!) and practiced using them because tomorrow we (missionaries) are all to go to Halandri branch and watch some appropriate moves (Tangled,I think is one of them 😜)  and then. all who have Nerf guns (and there are quite a few missionaries that do have them!!) will participate in a Nerf gun "war."  Should be crazy!

So you see, we are not wanting for things to do - not to mention the fun and love that is very evident among us all. However, our Christmas would have been very sad if it wasn't for Skype.

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