On Thursday we learned that Elder and Sister Steimle will be released on April 30th so they can be home in time for some important family occasions. Which means as a birthday present I get to become the official Financial Secretary for the mission and Mary becomes the Mission Secretary. I have to say that I am glad to know that who the Lord calls he qualifies because I do not think of myself as qualified. Anyone who knows me – other than the Lord it seems – knows that details are not something I do well. But thankfully Elder Steimle and those before him have organized the calling and hopefully I will not mess it up too often. I will keep Elder Steimle’s home phone number on speed dial!
The other great events of the week were conference and the district’s “Last Lunch” for this transfer. Conference was filled with great instruction and counsel. The talks that at first run through that seemed most directed at me were Elder Hallstrom’s and Elder Andersons, but I look forward to watching, reading and pondering all of them again. Between sessions on Sunday there was an hour feature on “The Saints in Swaziland.” Both the Wilsons who served there while we were in South Africa and the Blackburns who followed them and we got to serve with for a few months were shown in the program. Since we served in Swaziland for 2 1/2 months we knew some of the Swazi members who were shown.
The most important news of the week was the fact that the mission had 106 baptisms for the month. The first time that it has ever had 100 or more and hopefully the new base for an average month. The missionaries here are wonderful and full of desire to serve. We are very blessed to be allowed to accepted as part of a great district. On Monday they held their lasts meeting of this transfer and I had the opportunity to give a short lesson from the Book of Mormon. I gave it on the last few verses in 2 Nephi 32 and tied it in to what it meant to be a successful mission as outlined in PMG.
After the meeting Mary and I hurried home to prepare a spaghetti lunch for the district plus the other sisters who serve in the zone and live just across the street from our complex. I think it went well. Although the missionaries certainly enjoy the food, I think they enjoy just being together and talking in a relaxed atmosphere for an hour. We made sure that they got did not stay longer than the hour they get for lunch…they needed to get back to work because there were people who were waiting for them so their hearts and lives could be changed for Eternity.
During the week we found out that former Elder and Sister Johnson who we served with in Durban are now President and Sister Johnson in the Idaho Falls temple. Elder Johnson was called to be a counselor in the temple presidency. Couldn’t happen to a more spiritual couple.