Sunday, October 20, 2013

Zone Conference and Suriname

Dear Family,

This week has flown by.  We had zone conference on Monday with our mission President and the AP's  I mentioned that one of the AP's is Elder Creech.  He lives in Cornish, Utah.  He grew up on a dairy farm.  When he first came out on his mission last August, he used to go the the neighborhood dairy every week and visit the cows. He really is a great missionary.

His older sister, Mandy,  married Jason Gunnell  and she taught science at the West Side middle school for several years.  It seems like some of you children had her for a teacher.  Also, Elder Creech's older brother married Erin Olson, who is Jason's first cousin, so their children are both first cousins and second cousins.

On Tuesday, we woke up early in the morning and headed to Suriname to renew visas for two of the elders. Unfortunately, we had to go again on Friday for one elder who we missed getting a visa for.  We just didn't read our records right.

We met two interesting people from the Republic of Czechoslovakia on the first trip.  They were driving a big motorcycle all over the world.  They had plans to tour every nation in the world during their lifetime.  Unfortunately, they had three children ages 15, 8, and 3 who were left at home with Granny. We asked them how often they went home and it was seldom.  They would tour for a couple of months, then go home for a few weeks and then be off again.

I told them about how important families are, that children are the greatest gift we can get from God in this life, and advised them not to spend too much time away from them.  I don't know how parents could justify that kind of separation from their children when they are so young.

On the second trip home from Suriname, we met a tall American man, Randy Spegel, who was traveling alone.  He saw our missionary badges and immediately began asking us questions about our religion; how it was different from other religions, and what were our basic beliefs.  Since he was traveling to Georgetown, we gave him a ride to his hotel and had a great visit on the way.  Come to find out, he was actually a member of the church when he was a small boy. He remembered going to the church farm and picking fruit in the Los Angeles area.  He remembered little else. 

He said that his parents divorced when he was about 12 years old and he never went to Church again.  He has spent the last 15 years working on computer software programs in Hong Cong.  He is now looking for a change in his life. He would like to get married and have a family.  We hope that he will look into the church once again and benefit from the blessings of the gospel.

The rest of the week has been the usual, paying the bills, taking care of the Elders and teaching piano.  

With less than two months left to serve we are going to begin training a couple in the Georgetown branch to serve as office missionaries to help with the bills and the apartments and cars.  They are also busy in the district.  The wife is the district Relief Society president and the husband is the Elder's Quorum president.  They have a 16 year old son at home, so they will have to budget their time carefully in order to get everything done.

We enjoy all of your emails and skype visits.  We hope that you are all happy and doing your best to serve the Lord.  We pray for all of you every day and love you very much.  

Sincerely,  Mom and Dad

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