Saturday, December 26, 2015

Chapter 15 - ¡Feliz Navidad! Christmas in Ecuador

Dear Friends and Family,
¡Feliz Navidad! I hope you are all enjoying these last few days before Christmas. It's so weird to think that Christmas is this week, it is so different being on a mission during this time of year. I'm not around my family, I'm speaking another language, and it's really hot which just does not equal Christmas in my mind haha but I like it. The people here have Christmas trees and other decorations so that helps me get in the Spirit. Also the opportunity to serve others instead of think of myself is an opportunity I am really grateful for as well. 
Zona La Florida

Christmas in South America:
So Christmas traditions here in South America are so different from the United States but it has been fun to learn more about their culture and how they celebrate Christmas. So on the 24th they all get together as family as most of us do, but they open up presents at like 11 pm and then eat La Cena or a huge dinner that starts at 12am and they just eat and eat and then sleep for like the whole day on the 25th. I was like wow that is way different than Christmas in the U.S. They eat all sorts of meat and chocolates and other food in la cena oh and they love fruit cake....yeah it's really big. I don't really understand it but they love it haha
Also, we got to go to the temple this week! Oh it was soo awesome. I have missed the temple and it's only been like 2 months more or less since I went to the temple last in Colombia but I have really missed it. It truly is a part of heaven on the earth. The peace you feel in the temple is unlike any other peace in the world. We can set aside all our worldy cares and just focus on being in the temple. No matter where you are in the world, you can go to the House of the Lord and find refuge, peace, and comfort. I am go grateful for the opportunity we had to go to the temple and I encourage all of you to go to the temple as often as you can. Take advantage of the great blessing it is to have a temple, well multiple temples, so close!
So just a few more things. Life not being in a trio has been a little strange which is weird because before I wasn't in a trio but I don't know, it just feels weird. It's like, just when you get used to something, it changes. It's probably a good thing though. It's kinda rough being two new missionaries trying to figure out how to do everything that we need to do but I know that the Lord has prepared us and will continue to be our strength. We are nothing without God and I know there is absolutely no way I could be a missionary without His help.

P.S. Thank you Cub Scout Pack for the letter! So I work in the mission office right now two days out of the week because my companion is a mission nurse and she has to do stuff in the office and therefore I go with her and all the mail comes here first before going out to the missionaries and so you can only imagine my surprise when one of the Elders just out of the blue asks me "Hermana Roylance, were you close to the Scouts in your ward?" haha I was so confused and taken aback but then he gave me the letter. THANK YOU DC2nd WARD! It was such a sweet thing to do, it made me think of home. Thank you for all your support and prayers! :)

Hermana Roylance

Pictures are from a tourist place called Al Faro

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