5 of the days were very busy, 2 were pretty busy, and the other three were not so much. Transfer week is always a busy one for us – especially Mary. We get the “final” transfer report from the assistants on Monday – it is usually sitting on our desks when we get in – and then we can get things moving. Mary actually gets a heads up on Thursday or Friday about those who will have the opportunity to serve for the first time as District Leaders, Zone Leaders or Assistants so she can start getting letters out to the missionaries parents and PH leaders. There are also a series of letters for the missionaries going home and those coming in. All in all she gets to write and post a lot of letters. I started to write all the other things that she does for a transfer but I got tired and will leave it at that.
My task is much easier. All I need to do is make up a transfer scenario that shows the new organization of the mission, get ever missionary with the right companion, in the right area, district, zone and with the correct calling. It sounds harder than it really is but I still manage to make mistakes. However this time I only had two corrections with my first attempt. I have the assistants look over the board and make sure everything as they should be.
Once the transfer is finalized – this means that Salt Lake has it firmly in their servers – I can sync it with a wonderful program called ‘Establishing Zion’ that was developed by Elder Parry, an IT whiz who served here before we came, for the Fort Lauderdale Mission that provides us with some wonderful tools and reports that are not available through the Church’s software.
Last transfer – the first one without Elder Steimle guiding me – it took me four days and a number of attempts to get things almost correct. This time I managed to do it is one day and I think everything is correct. YES!
The other person besides Mary who really does not look forward to transfers is Elder Beagley who is affectionately called the Car Czar. This one was especially difficult because not only were there the usual cars to be swapped around as areas were dissolved and created, but there were 5 new cars to get to the right areas, TIWI’s to be installed and get operating, and of course new drivers to instructed. He got to run around in the warm weather for 3 hours getting everything straight but he got it done and could still smile.
Mary and I took care of getting the mail ready to be picked up by those who were being transferred. We have this pretty much down to a science and it goes off with few if any hitches. The missionaries are always eager to get mail and it is too bad that family and members can not see the big smiles as the missionaries find something for them. After this mission I am going to try to do better in writing real letters to missionaries from our ward.
We did have one unusual experience this transfer. Since the missionaries who were going home went to the temple last Friday instead of on Transfer day. We had them in the office for about 5 hours with the instructions from President Anderson to try and keep them busy. Mary loved it because a group of them laminated and trimmed 280 plus cards that she normally has to do each transfer. They did it in about 3 hours where it takes us a couple of days.
What I did not do is take any pictures of the missionaries at work. This was probably because I was trying to get the transfer board completed so it could be finalized. In any case there is no permanent reminder of an unusual transfer day.
However I did manage to take three pictures at the chapel. Elder Plowman has been with us in the Fort Lauderdale Zone for all but one transfer but was moved Palm Beach Zone where he will be serving with Elder Free in the Palm Beach North area. Elder Wilson was also transferred. He will be serving with Elder Koleber in the Fort Pierce area of the Stuart Zone – that is as far North as you can get in the mission. He asked for a picture with me – notice I almost as tall as his chin! Hopefully we will get to see these two fine missionaries at some future conferences or during another transfer.