Week 45: May All Your Christmas's be White

Feliz Natal a todos!

What a lovely week with the baptism of Joel. We had lots of fun making treats and food with our investigators, helping them prep for christmas. We also have been droping off small notes everyday ´the 12 days of christmas´with scriptures and symbols of christ. its been pretty fun and a little bit hectic as usual.

The zone christmas party was a blast. We had a lot of fun with the skits/musical numbers. One day you´ll get to see the videos. We had an amazing training by Sister Mathews about the grinch. she wrote a book about how the grinch really stole christmas. it was amazing, so i´ll just summerize what the story is because it had much better rhymes that i cant recall. But anyways, it goes a bit like this: the grinch tried to ruin christmas for who´s, by taking away all the lights, all the presents, and all the food, but it didnt quite work, and instead they learned a bit more of what christmas is really about. the who´s thought they changed the Grinch´s heart, but he still had that wish to ruin the christmas of the Who´s. So this time, he started slow, he started to mention all the things they must buy, all the decorations they needed and that they didnt have much time. soon all the who´s were running around too worried about the sales and the lights and the things they must do. As they forgot and got caught up in the hussle, they forgot about what christmas was, what really was the meaning of christmas. They were too worried about the gifts they were giving and they forgot about the gift that was already given. And thus the Grinch really did steal christmas.

Don't get caught up in all the lights and the ´festas´. dont let yourself get lost in what to get the neighbors. remember what christmas is truly about this year as we think about Jesus and bring him into the gifts that we give, remind others of the best gift that was given. Christmas is a time when we have the opportunity to be the hands of Christ for God´s children. Even the smallest things can turn into a miracle. I know that there are people out there that need some Christmas cheer. It may not be in presents, but maybe just a invite or a small gesture. Never forget the power of the Holy Ghost to lead and guide you to find the one family or life that you can touch this christmas to make it a christmas just a little bit different. 

Here´s just a short little thought from a friend´s weekly email, though it was worth sharing with ya´ll.  I will paraphrase from one of my favorite stories: The Forgotten Carols.  In it Uncle John says, "think about it, wise men coming from the east because they saw a new star in the sky, angels singing to shepards, a virgins having a child.  It sounds absolutely absurd, but we believe it is real because something about the season makes us feel that it is."  I am sorry I cant quote it off the top of my head.  But what I have come to feel with the lack of presents, lights, and christmas trees is that the christmas spirit is still there.  I dont focus so much on the things that this christmas lacks, because it isnt about santa and his sleigh bringing toys on christmas day, its not about christmas cards or sparkling lights, because far away and long ago he was born to straw not snow, in swaddling clothes, the newborn king, our heavenly lord, our everything.  I know he lives, I know he came as the scriptures say, and he is "more than the babe in bethelem.  More than the carpenters son"  I know he is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.` (QC: Elder Holt) 

I love this season and I love you all!
Warm hugs from:
Síster Kohlert :)

Week 44: It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Boa Tarde,

It was another lovely, hot week here on the island of Sal. The weather has been a bit warm these days, but we have been pulling through. We were blessed with the miracle of water, which has been on for the whole week, so i do believe that it will stay now! Que Benção! We had quite the rat race running around to get everything ready for Sabrina´s baptism, and all went well, except for the fact that no one told us that there would be no evening church Sunday and that is when sabrina comes, due to the christmas devotional that we watched. Unfortunately, she was also sick, so she was not confirmed, but for sure next week. oh so much stress! But the baptism went well! Que Benção! 

We have been blessed with finding some new promising families! we do think that Heavenly Father wants us to learn something about marriage because we have SOOOO many families that need to get married, but don't want to, or want to wait longer. Its been rough. We must need to learn something out of this because these people are amazing, they just need to get married! We´ll get there one day with some of them, hopefully all of them...

Gutting the fish we bought on the street

We prepared our house for Christmas and we stuck snowflakes on our window to make it seem a bit more like home. It kinda works if you squint real  hard and turn on the fan and put on a blanket and drink some hot chocolate, but your also sweating by then. Que Benção. So excited so spend christmas here, just love all these people. They just are so accepting and make you feel so welcome when they know that your far from home at a time when everyone is with their families, but i really do feel like i have family here. Hope you all have a lovely prep to your christmas this week, send lots of love to all those around you, especially the missionaries serving by you! Endulge them with the love of their families.

Love you all!
Sìster Kohlert 🎄

Week 43: Oh, The Schedule

So, training is interesting. we tried to experiment with switching up the schedule, but it kinda just turned into a disaster. we were late or super early for just about every appointment... haha but we pulled though. we got to watch some guys butcher a pig. that was cool. we also got to witness the full-on caboverdean mama bear criole fight (that our reactivated member was a part of, story for another day, but I now know that I understand quite a bit of criole).

The baptism of Sabrina was moved, so should be getting pictures of that soon! the members here are awesome, mainly the recent converts. So glad that we get to spend Christmas here! Marlene, 13 year old recent convert, bore her testimony yesterday...sweetest thing ever. She comes to church in the morning and the night and is now always teaching with us! She wants to serve a mission in portugal. what a peach. She also always makes us little bows to wear in our hair. I'm also going to teach her to lead music so she can do that for her calling. it would be prime. Perla and he family, 

Elaine and Tiago, are moving along well. They all came to church on sunday, but she needs to get married, but she doesn't want to. So we´ll see how that goes. She is amazing though. and Maria is a boss as usual. We just have to get her married as well. It's a work in progress. Well, her not-yet-husband is where we´re working.

Homemade Caboverdean Yogurt
Sister Lee is amazing. preparing for her first division. She is going to be amazing. brushing up on the street contacts. Man, how I hated to do contacts, now i dont mind it. But the mission does get easier when your senior companion, but it also gets A LOT more stressful. I feel like I´m always forgetting something... everyday. We also we´re blessed with water again! Hopefully it wont be shut off again. Maybe it will be a permanent blessing. blessings on blessings. 

Love the mission. and `african` love you!

Síster Kohlert

Week 42: Happy Thanksgiving

Dear Family and Friends,

So just another week has gone by. My new trainee is amazing! love her to death! she speaks poruguese like a boss even though she´s from the good old town of Boise, Idaho. We had a lot of fun in Praia, then to catch our 4 am flight back to Sal, and of course the AP´s slept in and we woke them up ten minutes after they were supposed to pick us up. Ya know, only 40 minutes late from when we were supposed to get to the airport, but we made it. ​Had lots of fun showing her around the area and trying not to overwhelm her too much with the Kriol. We made it through the first week just fine! We should be having a baptism this Saturday if all goes well! Sabrina is an amazing 16 year old. she truly understands the importance of enduring to the end. she´s been such an example to her friends. Short on time this week, I´ll try to write more next week!

Love you all!
Till next week!

Síster Kohlert