Saturday, April 30, 2016

Realities



After we go grocery shopping, we come home and sterilize everything.  You mix 2 liters of water with 2 caps of bleach, and immerse for 2 minutes.  We bleach even the things we are going to peel because the knife can spread germs.  We have included our grocery purchases from today.  In case you can’t recognize them all, in the drying tray is a pumpkin (background), a yam (the big black bomb) and some potatoes.  So far we have roasted our vegetables in our oven that has heat settings from 1 to 6.  You have to guess the actual heat produced, but our beets and pumpkin and purple onions turned out really well.  You can’t buy everything you want at one stop, but need to visit several stores, stalls, or street vendors to find a variety.  For example, we usually buy bananas from a lady who stands on the median of a very busy intersection and displays them on her head.  We can get 2 big bunches for about 5 Cedis, or about $1.25.  We eat very little meat.

This week we tried the "cafeteria" in the Africa West Area office building next door.  We had rice, beans, chopped cabbage, and a piece of fried chicken.  There was enough on the plate that we shared.  It cost $2 total and we thought it was very good.  Last night was our first outing and we joined 10 other couples at Mama Mia’s Pizza and Tom and I split a pepperoni and Italian sausage calzone.  Our taste buds were excited!

We have met the face of malaria.  She was a middle-aged woman doing laundry.  She had just been diagnosed and was upset about the inconvenience of injections and pills.  Her boss told her to take a day off but she was back at work the next morning.  There must be many cases of malaria here that aren’t obvious to us.

We work about 40 hours per week in the temple.  We have each had experiences in the last few days that remind us to not judge people by their appearance.  Sue sat down by a worker in the women’s dressing room and was surprised to find out that she was a dual citizen of Germany and Ghana, speaks three languages fluently, and is educated as an electrical engineer.  She looked very similar to the woman sitting next to her, who could not read.  It has been surprising to Sue to meet several who aren’t literate.  It reminded her of a conversation with her sister Jane (former temple matron) about why the Lord uses symbols.

Tom officiated a session this morning (which was full) where many were obviously not experienced in the temple.  The last brother to go to the Celestial Room appeared old.  His shirt, though clean, was more yellow than white.  He appeared to have come from difficult economic circumstances.  But he carried himself with great dignity and said his part perfectly without any assistance.  It was very moving to witness his great faith.

Journal excerpt from Sue: Today I was the follower on a session with 20 young people who were in the temple for the first time - all missionaries - 5 sisters and 15 elders.  Most of them are to serve in West Africa but one young woman was going to London, England.  She was nervous about the cold.  I have never been in a session like this, but it happens here regularly.  All together that day there were 35 first-timers. Wow!  

The temple is often full with patrons and workers, yet there is a wonderful feeling of peace and reverence.  The people are remarkably sensitive to the spirit.  Their prayers are touching to hear and they sing with enthusiasm.  We are learning a great deal from them.

                                                                 Our stake choir

Leaving stake conference 

                  View of the temple,with Ancillary Building (housing) and AWA offices to the right

3 comments:

  1. Wayne shared your blog with me and I am enjoying reading of your service and adventures. It is only a couple more years till we are thinking of where and when to go. We pray for you two wonderful people.

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  2. You are definitely the odd people out in that chapel.

    Sounds like a good week.

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  3. Thank you for serving and especially thank you for your posts. We miss you, but your stories are faith promoting.

    Leslie

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