Friday, December 27, 2013

Merry Christmas from Salt Lake City Temple Square!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all!
These past three days have been unexplainable in a very good way. No words can describe the happenings during the days. This Christmas season has been full of joy, love and spirit. This was a Christmas to remember.
We celebrated Christmas in two nights here at the square. (Well, for me and my companion, it was three nights because my mom's Mission President invited us for dinnerMonday night with the approval of our Mission President.) Tuesday night was exciting. We received gifts from our family members, I also received a gift from Sister Stephen's family and from someone anonymous who gave me 3 pairs of warm socks. We were able to watch the Nativity Story and we had what we call a "Christmas Posada" where we explored the square as travelers looking for the Baby Jesus. Our Zone Leaders served as our "guiding star" on where we needed to go and each place talked about the Savior's birth. It was really a spiritual experience and we even sang for the guests that night who were out on the square as we waited for our turn to enter the Tabernacle as one of the stations. (The buildings were closed this time.) At the end of the night, we received a copy of a painting of the Salt Lake Temple made by Sister Briggs' mother. It is so beautiful and Sister Briggs' mother is so talented.
I was able to call my parents as well before we celebrated Christmas eve. I never realized how I missed them so much until I got the chance to call them and know how they are doing. I am really happy to know that they are doing okay and that the ward is doing okay as well. I'm happy for the blessings and tender mercies back home and the wonderful faith that the members have displayed. I am confident that all is well.
We had such a blast Wednesday! The buildings were again closed at 5pm and we had a pajama/casual civilian Christmas Party at the square. We watched movies "Christmas for a Dollar" and Happy Feet. We also met Santa Claus too! (It sounds childish but it brings in the fun.) and we have received gifts from the mission.
What makes these celebrations unforgettable is not just because of the temporal gifts that we have received, but the unspeakable gift which is Jesus Christ. Heavenly Father loves us so much that He sent His Only Begotten Son and whoever believes in Him (have Faith), follows His example and endures to the end shall have eternal life. With all the things that I have received the past three days, I felt how much I am loved... and the more I felt loved as I remember the Atonement of my Savior and Redeemer, which is the greatest gift of all. It's such a wonderful experience serving a mission especially when you serve the Lord and helping others to realize and know their potential as sons and daughters of God. These thoughts made me stronger with the trials that I am experiencing here in the mission.
I am happy serving the Lord especially during the Christmas Season. I invite you all to do the same. Look for opportunities to serve. As President David O. Mckay said, 

“True happiness comes only by making others happy—the practical application of the Savior’s doctrine of losing one’s life to gain it. In short, the Christmas spirit is the Christ spirit, that makes our hearts glow in brotherly love and friendship and prompts us to kind deeds of service. It is the spirit of the gospel of Jesus Christ, obedience to which will bring ‘peace on earth,’ because it means—good will toward all men.”
May we all have a wonderful rest of the year. May we all look forward to a New Year with hope and with love. Glory to God in the Highest, peace on earth and Good Will toward men.
I love you all. and once again, Merry Christmas.
♥ Sister Ngo ♥
Utah Salt Lake City Temple Square Mission

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