Elder Buxton at the Kyiv Temple while on a visa trip

Monday, December 5, 2011

December 5, 2011

You asked about Christmas celebrations, unfortunately in Russia, Christmas is not that big of a deal. Their big holiday is New Year's. That's when the whole country celebrates. They pretty much take work off for two weeks. However, the members do celebrate and are putting on a Christmas program that they are so excited for. They have been practicing for a while already. It will be awesome. :) This week we didn't get to go caroling because it was the elections here in Russia. We weren't allowed to be on the street unless we had a meeting that we were going to. This week was a good one though. It was full of business stuff that we had to do but educational non the less. We went around on Thursday with Doctor and Sister Hatch (the med couple in Moscow) and checked out medical facilities here in Ufa. Elder Decker and I went and helped translate for them. It was quite interesting and informational. Sometimes we have to do things that don't really seem like "missionary work" but really once you think about it, that's what missionary work is, helping people out and doing things that need to be taken care of. This mission has been the best thing for my life and for me. Its been tough but I have learned a lot about myself and have had my eyes open to the world and how beautiful God's creations are. I try to view everyone as a Child of God because that's what we are. In the world there is a lot of bad that goes on. I see how satan tries to make people feel trapped and terrible about themselves but I know that there is one way to return to heaven and that is through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. If we allow him to heal us, all pain, all doubt, all heartache, all struggles, and all misfortunes can be made right through Christ. I know this:) We did have a week full of miracles as well. President and the Assistants came down to Ufa and did some amazing training on Sunday. It was very enlightening. Also the S~'s came to church again. E~'s family and that was a miracle. Z~ is also doing very well but got sick this weekend.

This week will be pretty crazy because we will be in Ekat from Tuesday to Friday. It's very possible that this is my last week in Ufa since I have been here for so long. But it's also possible that I stay. It will be hard to go if I do. I have some great relationships here with investigators and members. I will let you know if I get my packages when I go to Ekat. I can't think of anything that I need really. I love you so much. I feel of your love everyday and I love each package you send no matter whats in it. It's perfect. :) I love you all so much. Sorry this letter was short. I just didn't have much time.

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