Monday, November 30, 2015

No Turkey on Thanksgiving??

Dear Family and Friends,

This week has flown by in anticipation of Thanksgiving. It seemed the whole talk of the Zone was how we will be able to work with full bellies when everyone else will be napping soon after eating. Such is not the case for missionaries. We had work to do! 
Elder Bingham & Elder Kestner 

Thanksgiving Dinner (Campout) w/ the Elam's

Thanksgiving morning we we went to a Turkey Bowl hosted by the Elders Quorum. It was a good turnout as we split in two teams. Essentially, it was flag football, but some of the Army Rangers in the Ward wanted to do Tackle. It was tackle football for a few plays haha. Some awesome plays were made. I actually caught a short pass for a few yards before getting my flag pulled. We had an amazing time and walked away quite sore, my companion and I. From there we drove to the Carino's for breakfast. They are a Hispanic couple. Brother Carino is from Puerto Rico and Sister Carino is from Ecuador. After breakfast we drove home to get showered and dressed in proselyting clothes. 
We then drover to Skidaway Island to meet with the Elam's for lunch, or better yet, dinner. The Elam's were camping out for a few days. So, our dinner was Dutch Oven Ham among other delicious food. I also had my first taste of Pecan Pie. I must say that it is delicious. My taste buds are changing for sure. Due to the title of this email, the Elam's made turkey, but they were cooking it in the ground among hot coals. So, in the end, no turkey for us. But it is okay, everything else was delicious. 

That night after visiting a few people, we headed in. I got in the shower due to us smelling like smoke. As soon as I get out, we are then called by a member in Alma to go to Memorial Hospital here in Savannah to see a member who had just gotten in a bad car accident where his fiance and 6 year old son were killed. He was himself, in rough shape. We weren't able to see Jared, the member that night. But were able to talk to his father and aunt and give them comfort. Around midnight, they asked us to come back in the morning to give Jared a blessing. Tired, we went home, our hearts heavy.  The next morning, we go to the hospital around 10. We met up with Jared's aunt and father who had stayed the night. We were led to Jared's room in the MSI wing to give him a blessing. He was somewhat responsive to us being there and acknowledged us and greeted us as best as he could. We performed the blessing, and Jared muffled a thank you as we rejoined the family to console them. We left the hospital knowing that he would be okay and would be comforted. 
Elder Kestner has become a fan of  Sister Carino's Sweet Potato Pie

We went home and weekly planned and went about our day. That night we finally had turkey with the Carino's for dinner to end the day. 
Saturday was very busy for us. Around 2:30, we picked up Sean, who got baptized back in June and who has the desire to serve a mission. We tried seeing a few people and were called on once again to see a member who was admitted to the hospital. This member was from Pooler, I believe. We gave her a blessing and she was very grateful for us coming. It was a very busy 3 days. We ate some dinner and took Sean home. 

My my, what a busy end to our week. As we are starting into this Christmas season, we are passing out cards for and on it is a video about the true meaning of Christmas. I invite everyone to watch it as well as another video about what this world would be like without a Savior to redeem us. 
Elder Bingham's mom sent a Christmas tree!
Hard to believe Christmas is coming up in about 3 weeks. 
Being a missionary at this time of year puts the true meaning of Christmas into perspective due to me being away from home. I realized that I can give two Christmas' to the Lord away from my family. The Savior has been a great strength to me in the last 8 months I've been out. It is remarkable how not having to worry about things that most people have to worry about and focusing on the Work of Salvation. I love being a missionary and I promise that the Lord will help each of you to reach out to those seeking the Gospel light. 

Have a blessed week everyone and Merry Christmas!

Elder Alexander Kestner

Flooding in Savannah, GA