“But you were always a good man of business, Jacob,' faltered Scrooge, who now began to apply this to himself.
Business!' cried the Ghost, wringing its hands again. "Mankind was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were, all, my business. The deals of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!”
We have had a wonderful Christmas week in the Ghana Cape Coast Mission. Here, the holiday is much more subdued than at home. The celebrating really doesn't start until around the 22nd when you start to notice a few decorations on the streets and the markets get a little busier.
Celebrating is all about family and food -- no Santa Claus and little emphasis on presents. It was nice.
On Tuesday, our sick missionary was discharged from the hospital in Assin Foso, so we went to collect him and his companion to take them back to Cape Coast to fatten them up a bit.
We made them work for it...
But in the end, I would say we accomplished our goal. They stayed with us until the day after Christmas, then I took them back to Foso -- good as new.
On Christmas Eve, the Cape Coast Stake had a big caroling fireside. Each ward was assigned a scripture reading and a hymn to sing. The missionaries were also invited to participate.
Elder LeBaron and Elder Lelea organized the group (three zones).
The sister missionaries brought the Christmas Spirit with them.
I was assigned to read our scripture and at the last minute, joined in the choir. But since I hadn't attended the rehearsals, I didn't know that the first verse was going to be a duet. It ended up being a trio for the first measure until I got elbowed by the missionary standing next to me. Luckily, it was a forgiving crowd.
Well, mostly forgiving.
After the concert, the senior missionary couples stayed up late and watched "A Christmas Carol" -- a family tradition of ours. We had to remind the young elders staying with us that we had a different handbook than they did, so they had to go to bed.
It had taken me three nights to download the movie from iTunes, but it was worth it. I had to do it late at night because the downloading would take all our bandwidth and no one could do any work in the mission office.
We spent Christmas day talking to family and enjoying the company of our senior missionary couples.
I'm wearing my "Bah, Humbug!" hat that Breanne sent me to remind me of our Christmas Carol tradition.
Makes you want to come to Africa and be a Senior Missionary Couple, doesn't it? Call me.
On Friday, we held follow up training for the new missionaries who are in their first transfer and their Trainers. It reinforces the importance of the first 12 weeks and allows for any course corrections that may need to be made.
On Saturday, we drove to Praso where I interviewed three people for baptism and conducted training for all the branch presidents and their branch mission leaders. We also attended the baptism and I was able to interview two young men preparing for full-time missions and a man to receive the Melchizedek Priesthood. It was a good day.
Here is missionary math, Sister Stevenson style:
These are the neighborhood kids that live around the Praso Chapel. I'd say she knows her multiplication!
CREATURE OF THE WEEK:
I should add a feature called Tree of the Week. We really have some cool ones here.