Saturday, September 20, 2014

The Bowens came for a mission tour

Dear Family and Friends,

It's preparation day again! This day gets here lightening fast each week, but that's because each day dissolves into thin air and it's bedtime again! Being engaged in much fun work must be the reason.  Each day has something to look forward to.

Last week we looked forward to having Elder Shayne M. Bowen and Sister Bowen coming for a mission tour. They walked through the door on Tuesday in time for lunch. They taught us while we drove through driving rain, over ice cream at our kitchen table, and at every other available moment, along with two big zone conference meetings and a mission leadership meeting. What a gift! The timing and content were, as you would expect, ideal. We are newly inspired and guided in our overall view, and the missionaries have been given improved vision for their possibilities! Did you know that you can train fleas to stay in a bottle with no real lid? If they believe there is a ceiling they don't even try to jump out of the jar.  Elder Bowen helped expose our false ceilings and encouraged more ambitious goals! The sky is the limit!

Elder and Sister Bowen with our lovely senior couples
Remember our cultural event from a few weeks ago? These four boys who participated all now have mission calls! (2 to the Philippines, 1 to Hong Kong, 1 to Redlands CA!) We will be here still when they return we are excited to see them when they get back!
We enjoyed the Bowens thoroughly and the experience was 100% lifting. Heavenly Father is so kind.

I've been playing our extensive playlist of Mormon Tabernacle Choir music. We have their patriotic album, and God Bless America came on. I asked Sister Mercy if she knew what they were saying.  When I told her she laughed that they would sing for God to bless only America.

With Sister Bowen

The kids playing in a "swap safari" after the storm.

I explained the best I could, then invited her to sing something patriotic from here, which she did with her characteristic smile and a fist pump at the end.

We have been 'dampened' by the edge of tropical storm Kalmaegi (Luis). It should be worn out by tomorrow in time for three days straight of road tripping. See what I mean by fun work? We are going out to visit our latest batch of missionaries, look them in the eyes, see where they live, interview and teach. And probably learn plenty from them and their trainers.

Merry Christmas! I mentioned the -ber months earlier, and sure enough! It's happening! There are trees and decorations for sale in The National Bookstore. Lighted figures and hanging designs that resemble stained glass windows are at roadside and just waiting to be taken home by any early enthusiast! I don't think there is Halloween as we know it, of course no Thanksgiving, so why not just go for the biggie?

This is a Christian country and make no mistake. There are references to Deity at every turn, from the sides of jeepneys to road signs to t-shirts. So the early celebrations are not just for the sake of retailers; we are not expecting to see too many Christmas Shoppers. One guess would be its for the fun of it (everything is more fun in the Philippines!), and from a sincere belief in Christ.

Have a wonderful week!

With love,
President and Sister Dahle

P.S. This little doll sat by me in Relief Society a couple weeks ago. She was confirmed today. We entertained ourselves by taking selfies with my iPad. Don't judge us...the scriptures refused to come up. :-/ I couldn't understand the lesson and she couldn't hear it. (She is deaf). Isn't she cute?!?