Thursday, July 2, 2015

June 2015 Mission Post

We had quite a few missionaries from the U.S. recently.

We are getting some missionaries from countries that haven't had the gospel very long.   Our 36th Ghana MTC group is here and settled in.   They are from:  Botswana, Burundi, Cote d'Ivoire, DR Congo, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, New Zealand, Nigeria, Samoa, Togo, Tonga, Uganda, United States.

This Elder is from Namibia.  Do you know where that is? We had to look it up to find it.  The Gospel really does make us all one big family.

They are all pretty excited to be here.

We also had a couple of Elders with interesting names.

Our sisters are lovely as usual.

We got a little break before the new missionaries arrived, so we took a day trip and did some shopping.  The scenery at the coast is always interesting.  There is a huge seaport here and we always see lots of the big freighters coming and going.  I took a few pictures from the road, to give you an idea of what it looks like.


  They make beautiful baskets, and of course hats, here.

Also, the wood carvers are outstanding.  Gerald choose a statue of an African warrior for his anniversary present.  We took a picture of the man who carved it.  There is so much talent here and so many things are made by hand and yet turn out beautiful.  They seem to be a patient and industrious people.

Once again it is time for arrival of our new missionaries.  We just love their smiles!  This is Elder Kabasele.

We were really happy to welcome a senior couple, the Bodines, into the MTC.  They were super fun to be with and we enjoyed our time with them.  They will be serving in Ghana and are from Utah.

One of our full time managers here, Cyril Mensah, invited us to join with him and his family for their Family Home Evening.

What a fun time to visit with these good people and hear of  their love for the Savior and His Gospel.  They are sharing those things with their two little girls. Sister Mensah teaches the young women in their ward and they had invited one of them to join us that evening.  What beautiful smiles these folks have. We brought ice cream, no duh, to share, and the kids and Gerald really enjoyed themselves.  A few days later Sister Mensah delivered a healthy baby boy.  It must have been because of the ice cream.

We had another MTC devotional.  We all get to hear an Area Authority, who always give us good counsel.  Whoever comes to speak, will always shake the hands of every missionary prior to the meeting.  They all really look forward to it.  Notice how modestly the sisters are dressed.  Aren't they beautiful!

 This is Elder Curtis, our Africa West Area President, and his wife visiting with us at one of our Devotionals.

Later in the month we had Elder Koranteng, an Area Seventy, joined us for our devotional.  These are powerful speakers and bring a great spirit of love for the Gospel and for the missionaries.

One of our senior couples, The Pecks, are from Pocatello, Idaho, and they know many of the same people we knew when we lived there, some years ago. They have served another mission in Korea and Elder Peck served there as a young missionary, so he speaks Korean.  The  Robisons invited them to come to our city and go out with us to a Korean Restaurant appropriately named "Seoul Grill".  Elder Peck did get to use his language skills talking with the owner.  Good food and good friends, who could ask for anything more?

Since this is our anniversary month, we celebrated with our dear senior couples, who joined us at a very nice hotel buffet.

The hotel is quite nicely decorated with African art and the food is excellent.

Here is a picture of some of the senior missionary friends who joined us at the hotel buffet.  Keeping busy with friends and eating good food helped us to be less homesick.  :)

Whew, we made it through another year of marriage! Where did the time and that young couple go??

As time goes on, we get to know the missionaries better, especially those who
are here for 6 weeks learning a language.  We see them during our group meetings, in the halls or our office, and especially during their sports time each afternoon (except Sundays:).  We take the opportunity to snap their pictures.

 This is Elder Mitchell.  Of course, he is smart, super talented, plays the piano, is a computer expert and is a lot of fun.  With a name like Mitchell, of course that would be the case!   And our daughter married a Mitchell;  good decision.

These two sisters are cute as they can be, and we love being with them.  They even look nice during our sports times.

We do encourage the missionaries to get outside and play whichever sport they like.  We have soccer, basketball, volleyball, and bicycles, plus some other games.  Our MTC president always sets a good example for them to follow.  He is truly multi talented.

Band of brothers.

Ghana has beautiful fabrics and we see a great variety of dresses, not only on our missionaries, but many other places as well.  These are the wives of the different stake presidents in our area.  Such beautiful colors and ladies!
Sister Robison helped the sisters make some notebooks out of the native fabrics.

The sisters aren't the only ones who know how to dress up.  Look at these four Elders getting ready for another devotional.

Our trips to the temple are a highlight of the week for us and for the missionaries.  Many of them will be serving in countries that do not have a temple as yet, so they cherish their opportunity to go as often as they can.

We do see miracles happen often here.  There are no coincidences. While at the temple, one missionary sister from Madagascar unexpectedly met another sister whom she knew and who just happened to come to the temple that very day.  There is more to the story, but that is for another time.  

Before long, a number of our missionaries are ready to go into the mission field.  We have a local doctor Kissi, who does a required check up for all those who are serving in Ghana.  Dr. Kissi is a real pioneer of the early days of the Church here in Ghana and has written a book about his experiences.  We will bring a copy of it home to share later.

It's not like they are excited to leave and get to work, or anything.

When these Elders found out that their departing time was late in the day, they came into the office and begged Elder Malmrose to let them go to the temple before they had to head out to the airport.  He, of course, arranged it for them.