Thursday, December 26, 2013

4th Week - Day after Christmas

It sounds like Christmas was a blast. Thank you for getting my bike all worked out and sent. I'm glad to hear that work has been less stressful and that you've been able to relax a little bit more.

I've got to say that it's so cool that you and the family will get to see Grandma and Grandpa Winkler on their mission next summer. I know it will be very fun for all of you. It will be so cool for all of you to see the great Church History sites out in Nauvoo, IL and hang out with some great missionaries.

Christmas was amazing here. We had a fairly simple breakfast and lunch served by the senior couples and branch presidents. We then did a service activity making baby infant kits and finished a couple hours early and then shared the scriptures and sang like I said before. We had a devotional by President and Sister Johnson, the area president (of the 70 as well).

Then we watched a live broadcast from Elder Bednar in Provo. He had the Provo MTC get 200 phones that could text his iPad for Q and A. The international MTCs could email his iPad. We sent in our questions and he answered some of the thousands of questions that came in. It was very cool and interesting to see what questions were asked that he answered. (See more...)

President and Sister Johnson gave all the missionaries a gift that had to do with their talks, M & M's for Members & Missionaries (we got regular, peanut, a bag of cookie M & M's and trail mix). We also got a Mrs. Field's cookie for lunch, which reminded me of home. We did a festival of choirs where every zone got paired with another zone a couple weeks ago and we sang 2 assigned Christmas songs- we sang Angels we have heard on high and Oh little town of Bethlehem (in Spanish of course). It was very fun to sing and the Spirit was strong when everyone sang.

We had a nativity quiz where we were shown 48 different illustrations of the Nativity scene and we tried to guess which was Presidente and Hermana Pratt's favorite (they chose different ones), I got Hermana Pratt's favorite right and because of that I got a small bag of some of Hermana Pratt's homemade Peanut Brittle; it is really good.

CCM MTC Mexico Nativity-Christmas in Mexico / CCM Natividad Navidad en México
Nativity at the CCM Mexico City near the cafeteria
CCM MTC Mexico Nativity-Christmas in Mexico / CCM Natividad Navidad en México

Our Hermanas in my district made us a paper Christmas tree with a note and a small bag of candy as well. On Christmas we also wrote something nice about everyone in our District on their own piece of paper and gave it to them. It was something that helped unite our district and made us feel the Spirit of Christ. 

Love, Elder Braden Dahl (written 12/26/2013)

Mom, It's nice to hear you had a great Christmas and got to do some really fun activities this Christmas Season. I'm glad to hear that the Christmas Program went well. And I'm glad to hear the family is doing some missionary work of their own. 

Tell everyone back home I say ‘Hello’ and ‘Send my Regards.’ I'm doing great here at the CCM and am so excited to be a missionary. 

Thank you very much for the Christmas present, I can't wait to use it in DC and I will do everything in my power not to have it stolen. [Mom & Dad sent a brand new bike to Washington DC so it will be there when he arrives.] Also thank you for the camera you sent with me, I've been using it. 

Venid a Mi means come follow me- I might have spelled it wrong, which is why you couldn't find the translation. The “Come Follow Me” video was about Christ's life. 

Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. And they straightway left their nets, and followed him. ~ Matthew 4:18-20
The only people I know that are going to Washington DC North are [my companion], Elder M and myself. When I was at the Phoenix Airport a few weeks ago, I might remember that there might possibly be a Hermana (Sister) going there as well, but I'm not sure.

In my district Elder M2 and N are from Arizona and M2 is heading to Georgia and N is heading to Florida. Hermana D is from Virginia (southwest) and Hermana DC is from Ohio, Wisconsin and Tennessee. Both [of the Sisters are] heading to Las Vegas, Nevada. Elder T is from Fresno, California and he is going to Arizona. Elder W is from Georgia and Elder G is from Bountiful, Utah and they are going to the Irvine, California Mission.

Just so I'm not a liar I did not answer all of KMG's questions; I failed to answer what my favorite quote is and I'm going to take a rain check on that one right now. 

I think I'm up to 220 pictures but there's not a whole lot of new stuff around so new pictures are getting fewer and father between. I know pictures are probably killing you. Don't worry you'll get them. Also, I did get the picture you sent of the boys [on Christmas morning] and I can see pictures on my email.

Being one of the zone leaders doesn't really entail too much in the day-to-day things, district leader gets to handle most of that. I am just one of the guys that conducts the priesthood meeting on Sundays, assigns which district passes the sacrament, conducts some of the few and far between zone meetings, and attends leadership training every Sunday in our branch (rama).

Love, Elder Braden Dahl (written 12/26/2013)

Dear Brother #1, #2, #3 & #4;

I hope you all had a great Christmas yesterday and I'm sure you got some pretty cool stuff from everyone. You guys look great in your PJs. It looks like you have a fun video game you'll probably play nonstop for a while.

I hope you all are having a great Christmas break and are enjoying yourselves. I hope you all are getting along well. Have a great time and enjoy all the fun things you do. I hope you are all doing well in your busy lives. I hope you guys get to have a fun New Years Eve on Tuesday. You might be able to convince Mom to buy you some party poppers to shoot off at midnight, since I know you're probably not going to bed at least until then right now anyways. I miss you all and I hope you are all doing well. I love you lots.

Love, Elder Braden Dahl (written 12/26/2013)

Glossary of Terms (by Stacie Dahl (Mom)):
Presidente & Hermana Pratt – Mission President of the Mexico Missionary Training Center (Centro de Capacitación Misional México)
CCM – Centro de Capacitación Misional México which means Mexico Missionary Training Center (MTC)
First Quorum of the Seventy - Seventies are called to proclaim the gospel and build up the Church. They work under the direction of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and the Presidency of the Seventy
District – typically encompasses four to eight missionaries
Companion/Elder/Hermana/Sister - A missionary companionship consists of two (or occasionally, three) missionaries to protect each other spiritually and physically. Why do missionaries travel in pairs - The Lord has commanded missionaries, in D&C 42:6, “Ye shall go forth in the power of my Spirit, preaching my gospel, two by two.”  2 Corinthians 13:1 “In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established.”
Zone Leaders - Zone and district leaders are responsible for gathering weekly statistics, assisting missionaries in their areas of responsibility, and general accountability to the mission president for the well-being and progress of the missionaries under their stewardship.
Rama Spanish for ‘branch’

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