12 December 2009

12 December 2009 – Saturday

There were four Christmas socials today – Esikhawini, Enseleni, Port Durnford and Richards Bay. This led to us putting about 200K on the car and spending over 2 ½ hours driving. But before we could get started we spent part of the morning waiting for an e-mail that would contain the music that Elder Nare needed for accompany his song. After about 3 hours of frustration we gave up and he decided to sing a regular Christmas hymn at the two socials he was asked to participate in.

Our first stop was Esikhawini which was supposed to start at noon but when we got there at about one President Nyawo and a good size group of children were the only people there. By the time we left about and hour later, there still was nothing there for the party but people were starting to arrive.

We took the N2 to Enseleni and found that their social was in full swing so we were late. They had started right at one as advertised. Nonhlahla was conducting and almost the minute we walked in she announced that I was to speak. I had been warned I might be called on but I had not really prepared a talk. So I gave a short talk about how we needed to have traditions in our homes that focused the Christmas on Jesus’ birth. I suggested that they make a tradition of reading the Christmas story in their families. I don’t know if I convinced anyone – especially the children – that they should care more about remembering Jesus than the presents, trees, and ornaments, but maybe I got the idea across to some one.

After the program we had to almost immediately leave to get to Port Durnford for their social. Along the way we had to make a quick stop at our boarding to pick up the table cloths for Richards Bay. They had called after we had already left in the morning and we said we would drop them off sometime. When we got there President and Sister Van Thiel were busy getting things ready.

Since we were going through Esikhawini to get to Port Durnford, we stopped in at the chapel to see if the social ever got started. It had and the children were playing musical chairs, the adults were talking to each other, the elders were cooking the meat and a group of sisters were getting plates ready to feed the probably 60 – 70 people who were there. We made a quick circuit and said hello to everyone before heading out again.

When we arrive at Port Durnford about 45 minutes after they were to start we found that only a couple of people were there besides President Machaka. None of the supplies nor the braii had arrived but he assured us that things were on the way. We spent some time talking to who did arrive. When it was apparent that things would eventually get going, we bid them goodbye and went to Richards Bay.

They were supposed to start at 4:00 but were of course also late as people arrived over the a 90 minute interval. By the time the food was ready, there were over 50 people there including a good selection of investigators. What was interesting was how many stalwarts were not there. Kerrie Baldwin said that last Sunday some 60 people had said they would be there but over the week they kept calling and saying that other things had come up and they would not be coming. At least there was plenty of food for those who did come and everyone seemed to have a good time.

By the time we got home we were rather warn out from all the travelling and visiting. But it was a good day and we got to see a good portion of the members of the district at one time or another.

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