The pod has been dismantled :(. Elder Fischer is leaving us to go to the beautiful Lake Elsinore. We're going to miss him a lot, he's been my longest companion I've had in the mission - 3 transfers, or 4.5 months. Now I can only match with a grey suit, no more matching blue suits :(.
Funny experience that has reoccurred tons of times throughout my mission I thought I'd share. Every time we go in a store, we get mistaken for the people that work there. Being Christmas week, it seems like people have a lot less patience to find what they want to buy and get out. When people ask, I try to be helpful and try to help point out where what they're looking for is. It's interesting to see how impatient people get so quickly until I let them in on the little secret that I do not in fact work for that store, I work for Jesus Christ. They get really red faced and embarrassed, apologize, and scurry away.
We had lots of fun celebrating Christmas on the mission. Our Bishop is the best so we spent most of the day at his house. Highlight was getting the best Christmas present ever! Matching ties from their family, and then seeing that they had gotten our Bishop the SAME matching tie. Church on Sunday was matchless because we were all matching :). We went caroling Christmas night and visited some families with missionaries in the Spanish ward. So instead of "Silent Night," it was "Noche de Paz." It was a great opportunity to "succor the weak, lift up the hands which hang down, and strengthen the feeble knees” and just share Christmas spirit with some members and investigators through music.
In other news, our Syrian friend tried to get us to marry his daughter in Syria so she could join him in the U.S. He has very broken English, so we could hardly understand him at first. Something about "young man" and "fee-awnce" (pronounced that way) and that we needed to "sign" something. Come to find out, his daughter is the only one in Syria still there from his family. "Fee-awnce" actually meant "FIANCE" and he wanted one of us to sign the papers to let her come to the U.S. to marry one of us and, therefore, acquire citizenship. I told him that, unfortunately, I would not be able to help him out with his current predicament. He was a little bummed out about that.
Something that is awesome to see is our 9 year old investigator that looks like a little missionary in his white shirt and tie. He said he only needs to get a little bigger and get a name tag, and then he can be just like us missionaries, going around teaching people about the gospel. It's amazing how reverent he is as he sits through sacrament meetings and walks around the hallways of church with his paperback Book of Mormon and Bible.
In one of the apartment complexes where all the kids know who we are, we met this new 9 year old we had never seen. He was SO excited to bring us to HIS house to let us show his family the "A Savior is Born" Christmas video. It was cute, even though his parents don't really speak any English - so referral for the Spanish Elders. Children are just without guile.
last pic of the trio (wearing my new tie from Elder Westenskows family)
p-o-d for the pod
passing the AP tie on
stockings at the Garcia house
matching at church
Skype'ing with the family on Christmas
leaving the office one night
Selfies at the temple
More selfies at the temple
the trio at the temple!
the trio again!