Sunday, June 23, 2013

Milder Temperatures!

It has actually been rather pleasant here in Accra. I asked Joseph, one of our security men, how long this cooler weather would last, and he said probably through August and maybe longer. We still get that sticky, clammy feeling, but cooking in the kitchen has been much more comfortable.

I just had an unique experience. It is actually a blessing for me and for Elder Mauga. August 6th is the next departure of missionaries being released from their two year mission. There are 16 missionaries departing but it should really be 17. Elder Mauga is that seventeenth missionary, but he is serving in what is going to be the Ghana Accra West Mission, and there transfer day is not until August 20th. A few of the other Elders would be serving in that mission also, but needed to be transferred back to our mission next week so they could be home in time to start school. Because Elder Mauga would be the only missionary going home on the 29th, I was notified that he would also be going home the 6th. I already had flight itinerary for him and had mailed a release letter to his Stake President in Samoa. Thank goodness there were cell phone numbers on Elder Mauga's contact information, but when I tried to call they could not understand me. Elder Caleb, who is Samoan, told me that the Island I was trying to call did not speak English, or very little. He told me it was 6 am Monday morning in Samoa and that he would call for me. Hearing him speak in Samoan and give all the valuable information to the Bishop, was a choice experience. The bishop will let the Stake President know (we called him first but no answer), and Elder Mauga's family.  Elder Caleb advised them to  leave the Island where they live on August 8th in order to arrive at the airport on the night of August 9th to greet Elder Mauga. I just get such a wonderful feeling when things fall into place like that. Elder Caleb is the missionary who was serving in Cape Coast and was going to go home, but decided at the last minute that he really didn't want to do that. He was assigned to our mission and is one of the missionaries that lives here at the Mission Home complex so we see him often. I like to think this help he gave me and Elder Mauga, was another confirmation that he needed to still be serving his mission.

It was another good Sabbath in Senchi. There were 5 baptisms today and more coming next week. I see a bright light at the end of the tunnel concerning the primary. Sister Boateng was assigned to be the teacher, but has not come but 2 times since I have been going. I think the visit we made with the missionaries to her home a few weeks ago may have made the difference. She was sustained today as the 2nd Counselor in the primary, which made it even better. Last week I expressed my desire to Brother Ahiabor, 1st counselor in the branch presidency, that the older children really needed to have their own class and the younger children have theirs. Then we would all come together for sharing time and singing time. After Sacrament Meeting today, I approached him to confirm the change and we were given the room next to ours. That room is where the youth meet for their Sunday School instruction and they were moved to an upstairs room which made it so perfect for us. Sister Boateng took the older primary children (age 6-11) in that room for their lesson, and I and Sister Duodu had the younger children. I was not sure what to expect for this week, but felt to prepare the first lesson from the nursery manual. The youngest is probably 18 months and she was a delight for the children who are a little older. When I did an activity with the children showing that Heavenly Father loves us if were are tall and if we are small, she crouched down right next to me when I was being small and it was delightful to all of us. Sister Duodo helped with the language at times and it went very well. After the lesson time, we all joined together for the rest of the primary. Sister Duodu did the sharing time and I did the singing time. I knew the children would not know 'name-that-tune' like we do in the States, but I wanted to try a version of it at least. I told them I would lalala the music and they had to guess what words go with that music. It took a few repeats, but they caught on and it was so fun. It is amazing the love and connection I feel with these children and these other women leaders. It is what the gospel of Jesus Christ is all about.

After Church, we went with Elder Amumi and Elder Royce to visit a family who have just started to investigate the Church. What a choice family! They have twin 14 year old boys, and triplet 9 year old girls. They just barely learned about tithing and already Sister Lucas set aside money from the sale of  her snail- kabob- making business for tithing. Brother Lucas is a farmer and a devoted father and husband. He has a good understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ already and is 'hungry' for more. Elder Royce was able to clear up a misunderstanding that Brother Lucas had, about partaking of the Sacrament bringing a curse upon a person if taken unworthily. It is a wonderful experience when the truth is taught and how it dispels the darkness of false beliefs. The Gospel of Jesus Christ has only light and truth, and it is a privilege to be sharing it with others who are wanting more.

With love,
Sister Avery (mom,grandma)


Ryan Avery said...

Mom, it's great to learn from the experiences that you're having.
Love you,

Chad said...

Your first experience shared truly was a miracle. It's neat to see that miracles are still happening, and maybe there will be another miracle in that Elder feeling needed and useful and capable of doing much to help. It's always so fun to hear about your adventures at the branch. It makes me smile as you share such delightful things. Also the missionary experience at the end, what a delightful time, and what faith those people have. Such good stuff!