28 December 2015

Okay yeah, maybe Christ wasn't born on December 25th.... But who cares! We should be celebrating Christ every single day of our lives.

Twins with President Stevens:)
WARNING: This email is really long but I just had too much stuff to say this week!

WOW. What a CRAZY two weeks it has been!!! Oh my I am SOOO happy and I absolutely LOVE being a missionary and I absolutely ADORE my companion!!! I have been so blessed to have amazing companions! Wow life just doesn't get any better than this. Don't get me wrong, there are days that aren't so amazing but as a whole I LOVE THIS SO MUCH AND SOMETIMES I WISH I COULD BE A MISSIONARY FOREVER!

Okay before I talk about my Christmas in England I have to tell you this experience we have had the past two weeks with Laisvis, our recent convert!!! Okay so long story short he moved to Romford the weekend of his baptism, which is in a different ward. But no fear because the person who actually found him is in that ward so we knew he
Christmas Eve with the Ramesh Family
would be in good hands. He was doing really well for a few weeks and going strong! And we saw him two Friday's ago and it was great! Then the next day he met with the Romford Sisters and they said that he was acting a little weird but he just said he was tired, so we didn't think too much of it....., until the next day which was Sunday, he was supposed to speak in sacrament meeting and receive the priesthood. Well... He didn't show up...... And then for the next week he wasn't responding to our calls or texts and nobody could get in touch with him! He was supposed to go to the bishops house for Christmas but he didn't go to that and yeah we had no idea what happened! Well, on Saturday morning he texted the Romford sisters and said, "I don't think I can do this anymore. Please don't contact me again."................. AHHH Laisvis!! What happened!! We were so sad for the rest of the day we didn't know what to do!!!!

Since he doesn't live in our area we couldn't go to try and see him, BUT since he lives in the zone we can go on p day! So that is how we spent our morning today. We woke up early and took an hour bus
Merry Christmas.  Our ward and families spoiled us.
to get to his house at 8 am because we didn't want to miss him in case he left. Seriously the whole way over there I felt like I was on a rescue mission. Just trying to save his soul is all!!!! We have fasted and have been praying so hard to know what to do and what to say to him, because we had no idea how we were going to approach this or what he would think.... 

So Anywho, we get there at 8 and it's still too early to knock, so we pretty much camped across the street from his flat for literally 4 hours no joke. Sounds super creepy I know, but we weren't going to let him get away that easily! Well at 10 we tried to knock, nothing. (He usually sleeps in late so we figured he was just sleeping.... Well we hoped he was just sleeping...) than at 11 we tried again...... Nothing. At 12 we looked and saw that one of the Windows upstairs was open! WOOOOO! So we go again..... He was home and he had just woken up!!!! He was kind of shocked to see us, but he invited us in and we caught up for a bit, then he was like, "so your probably here to find out why I haven't been going to church the past 2 weeks....."

Elder Haysman and Ramsay! These two are
my best friends:)
Wow. The rest of that conversation was so crazy!! I just really felt such a great love for him from our Heavenly Father! He opened up to us about how he feels he has been lying to himself, saying all of the "right" things that we all want to hear, but he is not sure if he even believes it. He said he is scared he will quit, so he might as well just quit right now, that is why he hasn't been going to church or calling us back. 

To make a long story short, we had such an amazing conversation with him for the next hour that was completely directed by the Spirit. We were able to help him overcome his concerns and to encourage him to keep pushing forward. After he said one of the most sincere prayers I have ever heard in my life. Oh my days please pray for him. We just love him soooo much!!!  AHHH seriously this has been one of the craziest experiences of my whole mission so far. 

Wow any ways ummm yes I loved Christmas in England!  Not gonna lie leading up to it it didn't feel like Christmas to me because of the lack of snow and Christmas cheer, but it turned out to be a Christmas I will never forget!!!!! 
Boxing day lunch with Brother Beasley and the Elders:)

Okay first off we had a zone Christmas conference and that was a party! It was with the Romford zone (my zone) and the CANTERBURY ZONE!!! Aka all of my friends (my girls Sister Mathews and Sister Haynie and also my crazy friends Elder Ramsay and Elder Haysman) so I was super stoked about that!!!!!! We started off in the Hyde Park Chapel and had a spiritual meeting which was really nice. I really felt the Spirit of Christ as people did musical numbers... Including President Stevens. Did you know that he was in the Tabernacle Choir? Yes, yes he was. He did a solo and he has such a pure voice it was beautiful! Wow I am just so incredibly grateful for Jesus Christ. No words can describe.

So yes that was amazing! After that we had a party and played games and wore Christmas sweaters and yes Sister Fenu and I had a light up reindeer sweater and President Stevens had the same one! Haha that was fun!

The cover of our rap album.
Okay now let's fast forward to Christmas Eve!!!! What a great day this was! We went to some less active families and Caroled and that was a really special experience! We went to this older lady and she was so excited to see us:) We had an appointment in the afternoon but the lady wasn't there so we went to the next door neighbor and just decided to knock and start singing, so we did and she was African and invited us in and started singing with us and we are seeing her next week! #miracles! Haha that was cool. Then that night we went to the Ramesh family from Sri Lanka and they are so wonderful! They have been members for just a few years and are semi active. Man those kids are crazy and we had so much fun being with them! We played uno and sang Christmas songs and had an interesting Sri Lankan meal. Haha! Before we left we watched the nativity with them and that was really nice to help those kids remember what Christmas is really all about.

When we got home Sister Fenu and I wrapped all of our presents from home and then Christmas morning we woke up and opened them all! Haha that was really nice. Christmas Day we went with the Elders to the Theed's house, our ward mission leader to Skype and eat and watch a Disney Movie! We watched Inside Out..... Umm so stinkin' cute! And
Caroling outside the chapel!
wow I didn't think I was going to cry when I saw my family but man I totally lost it right when I saw them. Wow I feel so blessed to have such great support from home. I love you guys!!!!!!!

The day after Christmas we went to have a Boxing Day Christmas lunch with the Elders at Brother Beasley's house... The funniest old man you have ever met oh my days! He gives all of the missionaries nicknames so my name is "Late Sandy".... Sandy because I am from Sandy.... and Late because our life is crazy and we have been late a few times when we went to see him! Okay he gave us these hats that say "LDS" on them! Hahahaha I died. They are sweet! Bless his heart:) 

As I have been talking with people about Christmas this year, it made me really sad how the world has completely lost the true meaning of Christmas. It also really surprised me how many people don't celebrate at all. I heard a few people say that Christ wasn't actually born on Christmas Day so we
Sunday lunch at the chapel:)
shouldn't celebrate it then..... Someone else said that in the bible God tells us not to celebrate the birth of Christ... Not sure where they got that. The way I see it... Okay yeah, maybe Christ wasn't born on December 25th.... But who cares! We should be celebrating Christ every single day of our lives. After all, He did what no ordinary man could do. He did it for us. Every single one of us. No matter who we are, no matter what we have done in our lives, He suffered for us so we can be made clean, so we can change and be able to have eternal happiness. Wow. Do we ever really stop and think about that? I don't think we do enough.

I Love Sister Stevens
3 months ago, as a whole mission, we had a challenge to read the whole Book of Mormon on Christmas Day. Wow that was such a special time to be able to finish reading the last chapters in Moroni on Christmas morning. I truly know with all of my heart that it is true! After I finished I went back through every page of the book and reread the verses that I highlighted and the theme that stuck out to me was this.... And I will use two of my favorite verses to describe it....

Omni 1:26..... "Come unto Christ who is the Holy One of Israel, and partake of his salvation, and the power of his redemption."

3 Nephi 9:13-14... "Will ye not now return unto me, and repent of your sins, and be converted, that I may heal you? Yea, verily I say unto you, if ye will come unto me ye shall have eternal life. Behold, my arm of mercy is extended towards you, and whosoever will come, him will I receive; and blessed are those who come unto me."

Wow aren't those some of the most beautiful scriptures you have ever heard? 

What I got out of the Book of Mormon as I read through it this year was the message of Mercy and Hope. We have such a merciful and loving Heavenly Father! Wow we are so blessed! I loved the phrase "COME UNTO CHRIST." It is repeated so many times in the Book of Mormon! When we come unto Christ that is where we find true happiness and purpose in our lives.

The Theed's have been great!
This year I want each of you to set a goal for how you will draw closer to Christ and remember Him more.  

I have never been more certain of the fact that Jesus Christ is our Savior. I feel His power in my life. He has changed me and I will be forever grateful. 

Although technically this is a few days late.....

Merry CHRISTmas!

May you turn your hearts to Him this year.


Sister Sara Ranck

Click here for a video of Christmas morning.

Click here for a video of driving through London.

PS sorry for the freakishly long email this week! I couldn't even fit it all in!!

What goof's

Robert Stokes! What a good guy.

We love Terry!

I got to go on an exchange with this beautiful girl!

My Baby Girls 

Gillingham reunion <3 Miss them!!!

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