We are still here! But preparation day found us preparing in other ways than writing home. Here's what we were doing!
It's time for mission president interviews, so Sister Winters and I took ourselves down the hill to do some shopping and to get bins and bins of cookies to be used for holding off starving missionaries until we can finish talking with each one.
Interviews are the most wonderful experience! I don't actually interview, because I am less official. I chat and ask hard questions like "What did you eat for breakfast this morning?" "How is your English study coming?" and "Are you exercising each day?" (Thank you Elder Klebingat! See general conference, Saturday afternoon) To these questions they smile big and say "Ummmm". I give my best pep talk to those who need it. Then I ask about how each one's family is. This question gets varying responses; often there is much to tell, sometimes it is tearful. Again I wish I could shout from the rooftops about our valiant ones! Many have little or no family contact. A few are disowned. And, there are many who are well loved, supported, and have parents counting down the months while their son or daughter tries hard to ignore the number signaling the end.
But there is one question that elicited identical responses without fail: "How did you like General Conference?" 500 watt light bulbs go off in every pair of eyes, and they spill out their love of this talk or that one. How they needed just exactly what a specific speaker taught. How thrilled to have a new focus. Many even liked the talk by Elder Klegingat which scored a direct hit for most of us.
We love these missionaries! We are so proud of them. We are honored to serve side by side, shoulder to shoulder with them. For all the jokes about the church being true because "how else could a bunch of teenagers not bring it to ruin," we want to say, take a closer look at these teenagers. They are budding Ammons, Lehis and Nephis, Almas and Amuleks! We are all striving together to be the Lord's missionaries and bring the world His truth! And some days we are surprised that hapless rookie mission presidents and wives don't crumple the forward motion of His work! That's where the real jokes could begin. :)
So, that's the long answer for the short question of why we were delinquent in getting the email out on the first half of Monday. Cookie buying. Oh, and we finally got a griddle for pancake making, too. Did you know they actually try things out in the store before you buy them to make sure they work? I had to wait a bit for the repacking...avoiding melting plastic and all. This is the practice with light bulbs too! Good idea, right?!
Then, in the evening, President Dahle had a very special talk to give.
A few weeks ago, maybe even several, President Dahle interviewed a wonderful sister just younger than we are for a temple recommend. She was a less active returning! She was so excited to go to the temple, and actually had a sweet experience in her interview and talked about it after to the missionaries. The branch temple trip was scheduled for October 21 and she would be going! She was a cancer survivor, and was just going back for some rechecks. A minor surgery was decided on. So, so sadly, through some complications, she passed away suddenly. Her funeral was Monday night, in her home, where her casket was surrounded by flowers upon flowers, and her family. Her temple recommend was placed in her right hand and she was in her temple dress. Branch members and friends gathered, many of us seated out on the porch and some out into the street. There were talks and hymns, and all was concluded by President Dahle. More somber, but still, sweet is the work.
This was a renewed look at the eternal perspective.
To end on a lighter note, basketball, bats, and beetles. That's the short version of our date last night. I will say that the conclusion found just us out on our court, under the lights, having two short games of PIG. I won't say who won, but I will say that we were both rather surprised! :-)
|Name that beetle!|
And, as we were driving in the night recently a lizard landed on our windshield!!! The force of the wind blew him unwillingly up, up, up, until he couldn't hang on any longer and disappeared into the dark! Or is this a teenage lizard thrill seeking night game for reptilian delinquents?!
We love you!
President and Sister Dahle
The red bag may hold the catch of the day.
Masinloc Branch President
Fisherman in every sense. He was out at 3:00 am that morning netting a catch of just over 2 kilos. Smaller than usual.
|How many times have you wanted to do this?!|
|The program for a zone meeting.|
Can you guess what it means?
Small or large, our chapels feel the same.
Nope! No Christmas hymns!
|Small word of advice!|
Mt. Pinatubo erupted in 1991 filling valleys
with muddy ash while making its way to the ocean.
Sickle in hand, he begins the rice harvest.