27 November 2009

27 November 2009 – Friday

Our morning had to be slightly re-arranged because the gardening crew came over to work on our yard. Much like the car wash they take their time but do a good job. I had to call Justice – their boss – to come over and translate some instructions to his crew because I could not quite get across what I wanted done. I told Justice it was my fault and not his men’s.

I managed to get my check cashed. As a tender mercy I got the same teller that I had on Wednesday. I have to confess that I thought it was another teller and was at first disappointed when my turn took me to what I thought was the wrong window. But the sweet teller quickly acknowledged that she was the one who helped me before and she quickly – at least for South African Banks – cashed my check.

It had been alternating between raining and drizzling all morning and it continued that way all day. I of course forgot to put in an umbrella so we managed to get wet from time to time.

We went from the bank to Esikhawini where we took a card and candy bar to sister Myeza who turns a young 82 tomorrow. Since we will be at the Youth Convention all day, we decided to do this a day early instead of a day late. She was thrilled with the attention and when we sang Happy Birthday to her she jumped up and shook our hands again. While we were there, sister Mkhwanazi – the other of my ‘young ladies but only 77 years old – came over and she was able to translate anything that needed translating. It is wonderful to see how grateful these humble people are for any act of kindness.

We then ran over to Port Durnford and picked up their banner so Mary could finish putting on the scriptures. It really does look good and I am proud of the youth for how well they worked together. Not just in Port Durnford but everywhere.

During the day I came up with a number of things that I thought might cause problems tomorrow with the Youth activity but each time I called Sne, he told me they had taken care of it. Even when I called to say that they might want to make a plan for if it was raining hard and he said they had spent the morning doing just that – they had Plan B. Basically the Youth leaders have adapted the two day program that Sister B had printed out before she left into a one day program. Next time I am sure they can find their own program on the inter-net or make their own plans for their activities. It is wonderful to see all the effort the Bartholomews and Hafens put in to show them how a program should bear fruit. We just get to be true shadow leaders – and not even very close shadows.

Our afternoon was spent in Enseleni teaching English to President Vilane and then being there for Youth. About the time Youth should have been starting President Vilane started asking me questions and we spent over an hour talking about different things going on in his branch. For a number of them I just got out the Church handbook of instructions and we went through the relevant parts. We did talk about some callings he was thinking of making and I explained to him that the presidents of Auxiliaries should be given the opportunity to choose their counselors subject of course to his agreement. I also mentioned that when you released a president you also had to release their counselors and so the whole new presidency needed to be sustained.

He is a truly excellent and humble man and wants to do things right. I enjoy working with him and he is so eager to learn and do things right. I encouraged him to have the AP come early to fix the sacrament and not have the elders do it each week.

Youth was rather unorganized and when Khulikani came in where President Vilane and I were working  to mention that, I told him that he was the YM president and needed to get things moving with a song and prayer and then play some games. A few minutes later we heard them singing and when we finished our meeting we found them playing a game.  All Khulikani needed was someone to tell him it was up to him.

After Youth we did some shopping and it was raining fairly heavily. Of course we did not have an umbrella – I had taken it out when I thought I was going to have a tire changed – so we managed to get rather wet. But as Mary often reminds me, we would not melt.

So it was a good day. Often I feel like we could do more and we probably could but I think that is true no matter how much we do. I feel that we are touching lives and making the branches stronger. That has been my goal since we came on our mission. To help prepare the branches to stand on their own so if there are no couples here, they will still move forward.

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