Some things you just don't see every day.
This week, we welcomed three new missionaries from the MTC. They are native French speaking and have been learning English for the last six weeks.
It is usually pretty quiet around the dinner table when the missionaries from the DRC and Ivory Coast come. My French is limited to the name of a restaurant that we used to go to in Paris when I traveled there on business. Roughly translated, I can say, "The Cow on the Roof." It doesn't come in handy very often.
However, the ice was broken when our office missionaries borrowed their French - English dictionaries and started communicating.
We had a nice day together, then sent them out to meet their companions.
I took a day and drove out to Sekondi and Shama to conduct some baptismal interviews.
From Sekondi, I joined the missionaries in Shama. I had one interview in Shama and then a second interview in a little village across the river.
It is a fairly reasonable commute from the village to Shama in these "water taxis" and the members in the village use them to attend Church. However, I don't let the missionaries ride in the boats. The future lawyers have argued that because they charge a fare, these are not "personal boats" which are not allowed in the Missionary Handbook. I say they look like personal boats to me, so the missionaries have to take a 45 minute tro ride over the nearest bridge and then on a dirt road that cuts back toward Shama on the opposite side of the river. There are several members of the Church there, so it is worth the trip once a week.
It is a pretty drive.
The man we met is a school teacher and is well known throughout the village. He will be a great member of the Church.
We also brought in all of the brand new missionaries and their trainers for some additional instruction (54 missionaries). The new missionaries have been in the field about three weeks.
We had a nice lunch and let them visit a bit. Then we reviewed the importance of their work, discussed the training process and reinforced expectations for both the new missionaries and for the trainers.
We spent the evening with Elder and Sister Hanlon, where we finally (after months of anticipation) were able to try her famous southern fried chicken.
It was worth the wait.
We were also able to watch the Saturday afternoon session of General Conference (8 pm to 10 pm, our time). Last April, we were only able to hear conference over the KSL Radio website, but this time Elder Hanlon was able to stream it off of LDS.org. Since so few of the members of the Church here have access to the internet, we have to wait a month for the Church to send DVDs. Once the discs arrive, we choose a Sunday and watch it during the regular worship services. Not quite as nice as watching it on TV in your jammies.
On Sunday, I was able to release a missionary from Praso who had just completed his service in Nigeria. I was starting to get worried about him because I had expected him in Cape Coast on Wednesday, but didn't hear from him and didn't have a way to contact him. Luckily, I knew I would be near his home on the weekend.
The Praso Ghana District Presidency
Missionaries from Praso.
We arrived home from Praso with 15 minutes to shovel down a few bites of dinner and walk over the the chapel down the street where I had been asked to speak at a fireside.
After the fireside, we Skyped as many of our non-missionary children that we could (sorry we missed you Joseph and Shannon) and listened to the Sunday afternoon session of General Conference.
It was a nice week.
I'm so happy.
CREATURES OF THE WEEK:
The office elders helped me out this week. The monkeys live behind their new apartment.