This morning I decided to take a quick look at the Tembe Elephant Park webcam before we left for joburg. I was pleasantly surprised to find a young giraffe being shown at the water hole. It is only the second or third time I have seen one there. There was also a small herd of kudus having their breakfast. When a giraffe needs to take a drink, they must check carefully that there is no sign of any predators because when they do the splits to get to the water they are very vulnerable. So the day started out with a smile on my face thanks to Tembe’s webcam.
Friday is of course district meeting and elders Taylor, Liera and Oldroyd were talking on the front steps when elder Taylor took elder Oldroyd’s name tag. As you can see Elder Taylor is about 8″ taller and a few pounds heavier than elder Oldroyd.
After some good natured horseplay while the rest of us looked on, elder Oldroyd carried elder Taylor down the walk.
District meeting includes each pair of elders talking about a couple of their investigators who are on date to be baptized, a couple of new promising investigators and a couple of less active members that have started coming back to church. In the last picture elders Di Ruscio and Liera are backing their cars out onto the street. Any time a mission car is backed up one of the elders is supposed to guide the driver to safely reverse. Unfortunately sometimes the backer is not paying attention and the car runs into somethingÃ¢Â€Â¦but the idea is a good one.
Papa Thato is one of the teachers in the branch and he had a kidney removed after it was found that it had not been functioning since he was very young. We visited him before the operation and below soon after when he was hooked up to enough machines that he looked like a bionic young man. A week later he was home with his wonderful mother. He says unless he coughs or sneezes that it does not hurt much. We are just glad all turned out well for him and of course for his family.
On Thursday while driving through part of the township we found ourselves behind this truck load of students on their way home. I kiddingly posted it on Facebook as a South African Township school bus. Mary had a good size seminary class where the young women out numbered the young men 5-2. The taller young man is Papa who was only out of the hospital for two days! She has some dedicated students.
Mary bought half a watermelon and when I started eating it I noticed that it was seedless! It was the first seedless watermelon we have had since we were here. I can not remember about our first mission. Just a couple of days earlier I was commenting on a sister in the branch that I was surprised that they did not have seedless watermelons and lo and behold we were eating one. Besides being seedless it was sweet and delicious.
FHE with the Young Single Adults is both educational and fun. SisterÂ Ratema, one of the YSA representatives, gave an excellent lesson on the first three articles of faith. I really liked her teaching style because she kept asking questions instead of just lecturing or reading her lesson. Many teachers could learn from her. After the lesson they played a Book of Mormon bingo a few times and then switched to their favorite – Book of Mormon ‘Go Fish.’ There are lots of smiles and laughs as they try to out think each other. They are learning to keep a straight face when someone is trying to figure out who to ask next and then there is a round of laughter when they either get it right or wrong. There were 9 from the branch there besides ourselves. Next week we are going to be gone so they will have to do all the work.
The 1st of February was very busy for us. It started at 5:30 when we left for Parys to pick up sister Bobbi so she could attend church. While we were waiting for her and Louis to get back from their walk I went down to the Vaal River and took these pictures. It was about 6:15 and the sun was just touching the tops of the trees. It was very quiet and beautiful. The drive both ways was also peaceful and the landscape was amazing as the day started.
Sister Bobbi had not been to a sacrament meeting in Ikageng in years so she was greeted by many sisters and some brothers who had known her since the time she attended regularly. Sister Brummer is a long time friend and they enjoyed speaking if Afrikaans. Elder Liera joined in helping with her chair.
It was a truly gorgeous day with clear blue skies and lots of sunshine so two of the young people – Menzi and Renny – did some fancy steps on the lawn. Renny then joined president Kwaikwai for a picture.
The Kujane sisters were joined by a new member for a picture against the colorful wall. Brother Omphile is the second counselor in the the branch presidency and was happy that sister Kea was back in school so they did not need to carry on their courtship long distance.
It was the first week for the new Primary presidency and Mary came prepared to help them with Â sharing time. In the evening she met with them and brother Omphile for a training meeting so they could better understand how a primary should be conducted. The presidency decided to meet each Saturday to prepare for their Sunday classes. It is a great step to see this new presidency wanting to become organized.
After the meetings there was to be a baptism. However the water faucet that we use was just dribbling out water so the elders with lots of help from some of the PH brethren filled buckets at another faucet and then filled the font bucket by bucket.
When we went to Klerksdorp yesterday elder Pier messed up and got a baptism suit that was way to big for sister Mpho. Elder Liera helped her roll up the legs so she did not trip and fall on her way to be baptized with Mary and Kea making suer he does it correctly. Â They were joined by Omphile and Kea.
The Lekebe family joined in for a picture. I have no idea why elder Liera closed his eyes as I took the photo but he did that a couple of times while I was taking pictures.
The elders have been teaching her for a few months and it will probably be elder Taylor’s last baptism before he heads home on the 17th but maybe not!
After the he baptism sister Mpho has a great wet smile. I had to take this picture of sister Mpho’s daughter as she tries to reclaim her blinky from her cousin. She is probably the most held baby in the city as it seems all of her aunts, cousins and others just like to hold her. She is truly loved.
After the baptism we drove sister Bobbi home, broke our fast at KFC and drove wearily home for a couple of hours rest before picking up those who went to the Primary training meeting.