Monday, December 26, 2016

Christmas in Ho Chi Minh City

Our Christmas celebrations in Ho Chi Minh City included celebrating Christmas Eve with a houseful of young adults from church, as well as our daughter Kristi who is here visiting from BYU-Idaho. We made sugar cookies, sang Christmas carols, and read the story of the birth of Christ from the scriptures. These young adults, all converts or not-yet-members of our church, are learning new traditions of Christmas as they join in fellowship together.

Making sugar cookies!

Our beautiful daughter Kristi!!!

On Christmas morning, we celebrated the birth of Christ with at church. The chapel was full to overflowing. What a sacred way to commemorate His sacred birth with the emblems of the sacrament and the opportunity to remember Him, remember our covenants of faith, and remember His supreme Atonement. We are grateful for His gift of immortality and eternal life, made possible all by His humble birth in a lowly stable.

Following church, we had the missionaries from our district over for Christmas dinner.

Skype family time!!!

 Sharing of gifts - ties, of course!

Then on Monday, December 24th, we took all the missionaries from our zone out on an excursion to Cần Giờ, or Monkey Island, with our amazing tour guide! Thank you to our mission president for this memorable opportunity.

 Yikes - they are getting aggressive!

 Monkeys everywhere!

We were surrounded by mangrove trees with their 
amazing root structures...

 Salt water crocodiles lurking in the muddy waters...

 Then a trip deeper into the jungle via speed boat...


 And a brief tour of the local fishing village. 

The Pacific Ocean!

The sister missionaries stopped to chat with some local residents 
down by the water's edge.

One of our sister missionaries - celebrating life!

Now it's back to work for all of us - which is why we are here - to serve the good people of Vietnam in any way we can.  What gratitude we feel to our Savior for His Gospel that we share, and for the privilege of bringing His message to those who have not heard of Him before. Merry Christmas to all from Ho Chi Minh City!  

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