Guatemala Flag

Guatemala Flag

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

December 25, 2011

Christmas tree and presents
Christmas day we were able to call Jake and talk to him on the phone. Since the following day was Monday (his regular p-day) he didn't write home because of the phone call. So I'm giving a brief update of our Christmas phone call.
Jake emailed us a number to call him at and asked us to call when we got home from church.  It turns out that this number was a member's phone from the area that Jake is serving in. Jake and his companion still do not have their own cell phone due to the flood that happened a few months back. We were very grateful to this family for letting Jake and his companion use their phones.
At the time of the call, Jake was having lunch and waiting for us to call him. We were able to ask him lots of questions and catch him up on how things are going here at home. He told us a few stories about things that have been happening in his area.  He told us about some of his investigators and less actives that he is working with.  He told us about some of the families in his ward and the friendships that have developed there.  One lady in the ward owns a taco stand and likes to feed the missionaries. He recently was able to help a family get their house painted, it sounded like it was a ward service project. 
Elder Asdel painting a members house
Primary children help with painting

He said he has enjoyed going to Las Flores and to Lake Peten Itza on his p-days. And was hoping to go fishing with some other Elders in his zone on the following p-day.  He likes the area he is serving in right now and hopes to stay there a little longer. Jake also told us that he likes his companion and that they get along well.  Jake's companion is from Nicaragua and his been serving in the mission field for a year.

I asked him if he had a Christmas party with his zone and President & Sis. Watts, and he said his area was scheduled to have their party on the 27th of December. He also let me know that he got both packages that I had sent and had already made the pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. He said they turned out good and he shared them with some members of his ward.
Jake explained some of the Christmas customs of Guatemala.  They mostly celebrate on the 24th and they love to celebrate with fireworks.  I'm sure this is something Jake gladly adopted into his own celebration. He also said that children receive mostly haircuts and shoes for gifts so they will be ready for the New Year.
Sparklers for Christmas
I sent down some jingle bell bracelets and matchbox cars for Jake to give to the children in his area. One of the little girls with a bracelet came close to the phone and rang her little bells for us to hear.  Jake said he gave them to the primary children who came to church today.
It was wonderful to talk to him. He sounded happy and said he liked being a missionary. Of course it was hard to say our goodbyes and to let the connection go. We are so thankful that our phone call went through easily and that we were able to talk to him and hear that he is doing well.

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