Daily Archives: February 29, 2008

29 February 2008


The district and the Barnards, Elder Barnard with Try (pronounced Tree) and Mary watching Sister Barnard explain a game.

29 February 2008 – Friday

Happy Leap Year Birthday – Dave Berry must be about 16 or 17 by now.

I am proud of myself – I got up and went to the gym this morning. After breakfast we read from the Kitab Mormon and then I worked on pictures and this journal. I even worked in a 15 minute nap before we had to get ready to be picked up by the Barnards.

We with them to their District Meeting where we were able to distribute mail. I interviewed a young man for the next Intensive English Class. He is marginal but I think he will be OK. It turned out that one of the missionaries in the district is about to be released and he may also want to come to our class. He is from the Selatan branch so it will be easy for him. The District Meeting was a little long but they seem to be working hard. They have a number of problems with some of their investigators that will need to be worked out before they are baptized. They have also had problems with a couple of the missionary’s health.

The Barnards and ourselves came back to the hotel for lunch. Elder Barnard was not feeling 100% and needed to get on line to check for an e-mail from their daughter who is a doctor to know what he should take. It seems that much of the internet service in Indonesia has been down all morning but the one at the hotel is fine. So I took him up to our room and he was able to access his mail and then get a prescription which hopefully will clear everything up. It is no fun to be sick at any time but on a mission and away from home seem even worse.

During and after lunch we talked about the HS English class – mainly to find what is working and what is not. The Barnards – like all the couples – are very positive about the program and what it has and will accomplish among the youth.

While the Barnards ran some errands we came up to our room. I worked on this journal and the photos I had taken yesterday. I also managed a very short nap.

The evening went very well. Mary and I held a meeting with three of the four Branch Employment Specialists, Sister Endang, the District Counselor in charge of Employment, and one of the branch presidents. We went through the responsibilities of the Branch Employment Specialists including that they should be attending all the Branch Welfare Meetings. I tried to empower them to go and one of the participants asked the District Council member to suggest to the District Presidency to teach the branch presidents that they should make sure that their branch specialist is invited and comes. We also went through the report form and what they should be reporting. I think Sister Endang was very happy that we held the meeting so everyone understood her calling and why the reports are important. We also gave out the Indonesian version of the “25 Rules for a Successful Small Business.”

After that meeting we went to the Barnards High School English class. They asked me to talk and I was prompted to speak to each student and ask them some questions that they could answer. It let them know that I cared and gave me a connection so that they relaxed. It worked so well that a young woman – the only one in the class – that did not want to give the opening prayer
volunteered to give the closing prayer. Mary also spoke to them and told them she would like to adopt them all. She also bore her testimony about the program. We found that the Barnards are a great teaching team. They are well prepared, have good connections with their students, and above all really care about them. The class works together well and seem to want to help each other when they can not answer a question. It is a wonderful feeling to share this class even for one hour.

Our evening reading from the Kitab Mormon was the last 4 pages of the book of Jacob. Other than the scripture on ‘Seek ye first the Kingdom of God’ and that being rich is not evil if you do righteous things with your wealth, and Jacob’s semi-lament about the lives of those who left Jerusalem near the end of chapter 7, I am still not a big fan of Jacob.

28 February 2008 – Thursday


My good friend Kevin from the Robert’s class.  Mary and the Roberts with their HS English Class. Mt Merapi on the trip between Jogya and Solo in our private van.

28 February 2008 – Thursday

First thing in the morning we finished packing all of our stuff and, thanks to the Taylors, we had a great breakfast. Then it was time to go to the bus terminal for our trip to Solo. We ended up being the only passengers in a 9 seat van so we had plenty of room for our luggage and could spread out on the seats. We also had control of the air-conditioning. So for $5 total we had our private van for about a two hour trip. The driver was a really nice man who stopped to let me take pictures of Mt. Merapi with its interesting cloud cover – or was that smoke from the active volcano? It turned out the driver lived in Solo and he asked if he could stop by his home for a minute. We said sure and so we got to see his very nice home – he is a gardener like me – and his children. The children liked having their picture taken and the brave young man even came up and shook my hand.

We checked into the Novotel and after we were settled in the Roberts came by and we spent some time with them talking about the HS program and having lunch. They then dropped us off at the hotel where I worked on catching up the journal and photos. We read from the Kitab Mormon.

In the evening we went to the Robert’s HS class. They only had about half of the students there but it was great to meet with them again. They were the test class for this program and we feel close to them. I was glad to see a young man named Kevin there. I think he is very bright and only clowns around to be accepted. When I first came into the room I went over and said hello and saw that he was busy doing some difficult looking math. We talked for a while – he reminded me to slow down as he always does. During the class I took some pictures and some movies – it will be interesting to look at them and share them with Elder Subandriyo.

After the class we sat around and talked with President Tatok of the district presidency about a number of things. He will pick us up on Saturday and take us up to the Bennetts. When we were finished the Roberts drove us back to the hotel.

Again it was a good day that was filled with special events. The main one was seeing the enthusiasm of the English students. Because it was pouring rain, only 3 came to seminary but 6 more came for the English class. Hopefully once the rainy season is over, more of the students will come to both on a regular basis.

One of the great blessings of our mission has been being a part of the start of this HS program. Hopefully it will continue and grow to be a powerful force in the development of the future leaders of the church in Indonesia. The same is true about the Intensive English class. We have yet to turn out a student that has gone to BYUH but this last group had two that would qualify if they were returned missionaries and I believe at least one will go. I think at least one of the young men who could not take the test because they had just tried a month before may qualify the next time. The problem now is for them to have enough money to go. This is something we may try to work on after the mission.