Thursday, September 30, 2010

Bits and pieces...

Working on my medical report that I send to Ghana.  Every time a missionary is ill, they call me.  If I don't know the direction to go, I call our West Africa Area doctor.  He takes care of 9 missions but is always available for each of us.  So, each month, we send in a report of the cases.  50 days now without any malaria or typhoid in our mission!  We are so excited about that! Doxycycline, nets and fans....that's the formula! Remembering to wash hands and veggies, all eliminate typhoid.
Elder Kamara from Freetown is on his way to the South Africa Durban Mission.
Elder Conteh is on his way to the Ghana Mission Training Center then to the Nigeria Enugu Mission.  

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Sights along the way...

This is for you, Monty.  We see these interesting vehicles all around Bo.  It looks like a cultivator inflated....have no idea what it is called, but it is used to haul just about anything from wood to people.
Whatever it takes to get TV!  Look at the top of the bamboo's a TV antenna!
Driving through one of the villages during midday...
All of these children were at recess at the school (in the background).  They were excited to come out and visit a little.  Their teacher was a young man whom you could tell loved his assignment.
As we left Bo, heading back to Freetown about 7:30 a.m., we saw this scenic view.  It was just beautiful!
On the bumpy road to Liberia, these ants have trails across the road.  We had already gone over this trail; but, we backed up to get a better picture. The next picture shows what the ants look like up close.
They are about 1/2 inch or more long....look at the pinchers on him!  After taking the picture, it didn't take long to jump back into the vehicle...

Saturday, September 25, 2010

trip to Bo, Monrovia and back

Elder Vogl and Elder Chaparadza heading out in Bo.  They didn't see President watching them until he waved and said, "Hey, Elders!"
This is when they turned and saw us!  What happy missionaries about the Lord's work!
We love them all and are so amazed at their love for the people and the Lord.
We are having our Leadership Training in Bo Zone in this picture.  It includes zone leaders, district leaders and trainers.  It is part of the new simplified is very inspired from the Brethren. It has started in all the missions but will begin in the MTC's in May, 2011.

Elder Tippets, Elder Hickey, Elder Kotey, and Elder Gunderson at the Kenema Chapel.

Monrovia Zone Leadership Training. These trainings last two days or more---about 7 hours inside and then President goes with the missionaries to teach and apply what they just learned.  Sometimes he doesn't get to go when District presidents want to meet with him too.  Four Districts keep him hopping...

A mighty change of heart...

On August 28, 2010, all of the West Africa Districts and Stake Young Men and Young Women put on a production called the "Mighty Change of Heart".  The Church News did a wonderful article on it. We attended the production in Freetown.  The youth put their total hearts and souls into it.  There were some really good actors and actresses.  It stretched their imaginations and most had never done anything like this before.  It was a marvelous thing to behold.  Click on the link below to see the Church News article:

Friday, September 24, 2010

We're back from Liberia...

As soon as I can get the internet to download some pictures, we'll do it.  But for now, here is a snapshot of our last 12 days.

We just returned from Liberia.  We left on September 14th, traveled to Bo for Zone Council and Leadership Training.  It takes almost four hours from Freetown to Bo.  We spent three days there before we traveled on to Liberia.  From Bo to Kenema is about one hour, then the fun begins.  We have paved road from Freetown to Kenema.  After Kenema, it is all bumpy, rutty, muddy, red-dirt roads. That stretch of road takes about four hours to get to the Liberian border.  There are lots of police, passports, etc.  After all the check points, it is another three hours to Monrovia.  We arrived there in the afternoon.  We spent the next five days with Elder and Sister Kimball.  We had Zone Council and Leadership Training there also.  It is always so wonderful to see the missionaries and talk to them.  All are doing well in Monrovia.  We are in admiration and so grateful for these wonderful young men who serve so faithfully.   On September 23rd we drove back to Bo.  On the way, we stopped in Kenema so President could do an interview.  We traveled on to Bo to get the hotel set up.  We went over to the chapel and attended a Book of Mormon class.

President and I took a walk in the parking lot.  It was dusk. While there, a little 11 year old blind boy came up to President and me in the parking lot and started talking to President.  He told President Roggia that he had gone to church two Sundays there and wanted to be baptized and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  He wanted the missionaries to come and teach his family the word of God.

President asked him how he lost his eyesight.  He said he had the measles when he was six years old and became blind.  President Roggia told him that he wasn't too blind because he could recognize the light of the gospel in his life.  President explained to him about the priesthood and what a blessing is...asked him if he'd like one.  He said that he would.  The Assistants then came out. Elder Hickey bent over, laid his hands on his head, spoke quietly in his ear and anointed him. Then Elder Gunderson bent over, laid his hands on his head, along with President and Elder Hickey, spoke gently in his ear and blessed him.  It was a tender, sacred, gentle, sweet moment.  The missionaries who serve in the little boy's area, Elder Ellsworth and Elder Vogl, came out.  When Elder Ellsworth spoke, and asked if he remembered him, (if he remembered his voice) the little boy's face lit up and grabbed Elder Ellsworth's hand.  He indeed recognized Elder Ellsworth's voice! Off they went, the two missionaries and this little boy leading them to his family's home because he wanted them to be taught the gospel of Jesus Christ.---

Monday, September 13, 2010

The Mission Office and more...

We have a large area for the mission office with nice flora in Freetown. Every new missionary comes here for orientation before they head out with their trainers.
The District Building in Bo.  One of the nicer buildings in Sierra Leone.
The Sinkor Building in Monrovia, Liberia.  That's Sis. Kimball facing the camera.
Ha! On the way to Liberia we saw this fence...We had a good laugh.
These are the primary children in Kakata Branch in Liberia.  It is way outside of Monrovia.  We heard monkeys, roosters crowing and birds during the services. This chapel was a school building with no glass in the windows and pretty down to earth.

Contrasting to that, in Freetown, we have Lumley Beach.  I smiled seeing the lifeguard stands--all our children were lifeguards and would have loved using one of these.  We don't see any lifeguards, however.  Probably at one time, it was thriving.  You do see lots of people on the beaches walking and sitting and maybe once in a while a few in the water...but not to swim.
This is for all the mothers who last saw their son in a suit.  We hang it in this "sacred" seems to feel like that since these young men, who chose to serve the Lord, take it off, hang it on the hanger and place it here....only to be worn again once they have finished their honorable two-year mission. It is marked with their names. We invite them to come in, take it off the hanger and put it is very interesting to see their faces as they see how they have changed from the time they first put it on. Quite the transformation...
This last picture if for our own mothers, one is 94 years old and the other 82 years old.  We love our mothers. They support us, pray for us, worry about us and love us.   We are happy to be of service and  both are examples of  how to do that.  Thank you for all you've taught us dear mothers.

Friday, September 10, 2010

some moooorrreee snaps

Elders, President (back) and Elder Patterson waiting for the "Mighty Change of Heart" youth show to start in Freetown.
ElderMichael Ngaliwa from the Dwarzak Branch left on September 3rd to fly to the Ghana Missionary Training Center.  He will be serving in the Nigeria Port Harcourt Mission.   He had never been on an airplane before or the water taxi.  For him, it is all total faith in the Lord to be on the water and to fly up in the air for three hours.  He is a very courageous young man.  Beside him is President Roggia, his assistants, Elder Gunderson and Elder Hickey.
These two were changing the big light in the church parking lot in Bo, Sierra Leone.  We loved the ladder.  I think it'd be a good project for a boy scout troop to make.  We see ladders like this everywhere we go.

We found this 10" wood carving of a "man reading" along the airport road in Lungi.  We took a little walk while we were waiting for the water taxi and we found this handmade statue.  We say that he is pondering the scriptures constantly.  What a good example for us all!
My good husband liked this walking stick with the lion on it. Sierra Leone means "lion in the mountain". It is very solid and hand made.
We were hungry for pizza so we used Lebanese flatbread with mozzarella cheese, sliced up some canned mushrooms, olives, chopped up some onion, found a six inch long pepperoni and used some tomato sauce with Italian Seasonings, and yum, it was sooooo good.  President said it was as good as any gourmet restaurant.
I don't know what this pretty bird is but he had the orangeist (is that a word? spell check says no) beak and bluest wings you'd ever see.  The camera doesn't do him justice.  Very beautiful...

more "snaps"

Elder Moss, Monrovia, showing us evidence of how a mission changes one.  He started his mission in July and wanted to happily share his achievement.  With all the hours of walking the missionaries do, it isn't surprising to see some weight loss.  The food is different and takes some getting use to also.  We see a trend where most hit a plateau and the weight seems to just stay the same after a while.

Monrovia Zone Leaders: Elder Massey and Elder Grabau having a good laugh. They have 20 missionaries in their zone to shepherd and they do it with faith and humility.

Missionaries on the move..

Missionaries coming for Zone Conference in Monrovia, Liberia last month.  Pressing on!  The Work moves forward!
Elder and Sister Kimball, our Senior Couple in Monrovia, Liberia.  They are "mission headquarters east": our mind, heart, strength, eyes, hands, and feet.  Their cup is full and they strive to constantly keep it that way! 

Monday, September 6, 2010

Lungi Pennisula outside airport

These three children carrying baskets on their heads made for a delightful scene while we were on Lungi waiting for the water taxi last week.

How beautiful is this?  When the missionaries arrive and wait for the water taxi to take them to Freetown, this is what they see.

Waiting for the bus to take us to the airport.  You can see the life vests that we wear for the water taxi.

We see this fantastic view from the airplane as we prepare for landing into Lungi.  Lungi is a pennisula off the coast of Freetown.  To drive it would take about three-six hours even though it is not that far.  To use the water taxi takes about 45 minutes or less and to use the ferry is about an hour plus.

After arriving from the airport last week, we were fortunate to witness fishermen hauling in their nets.  All the the family members work to separate the catch.  They catch sardines, crab, shrimp and various types of fish.
We, however, are fishers of men....

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Returning with Honor

Elder Davila served a faithful two-year mission and returned home with honor August 31.  He was in Monrovia, Liberia.

Elder Moser pointing to the Return With Honor plaque.  He finished his two-year mission in Bo, Sierra Leone.  We will miss you both but know you will both "adjust" to being back home.

Elders in Monrovia, Liberia during a break in Zone Conference planning their Preparation Day.  Every Monday is P-day, wash clothes, get food, clean the apartment, exercise and oh, yes, email family.

Three more new missionaries that came September 1st

Elder Vogl is from Logan, Utah and will be serving in Bo.  His trainer is Elder Ellsworth.
Elder Taylor from Afton, Wyoming and will be serving in Liberia.  His trainer is Elder Kenner.
Elder Essel is from Ghana.  He will serve in Liberia with Elder Merrill as his trainer. 

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

New Missionaries Today

Elder Clawson from Wales, Utah.  He is staying in Freetown with his new trainer Elder Asafo Adaji

More Mission Tour ...

Elders Stott, Davila, Lowe and Moss in Monrovia.  We had a Bi-District Fireside.  All the missionaries were there with about 350 members.  We'll add more pics as we can get online...