We get used to so many wonderful things happening in our week that it’s hard to select sometimes what to say. Tuesday and Wednesday this week were the MTC missionary days for their own ordinances. Four young men from Sierra Leone came in the group and it was sobering to consider what they had already survived in their young lives - civil war and the Ebola outbreak. What a preparation for dedicating two years to serve the Lord!
During a lull in the office, Sue was studying the scriptures and commented on 3 Nephi 18:32, a verse she loves, that had been used by Elder Robert Sackley (see April 6, 2016 blog) in his teaching many years ago. Br. Afful, who is the former temple president and works in the office on Thursday mornings, turned around and asked how we had known Elder Sackley. He then commented that Elder Sackley had been his mission president in Nigeria. For Sue, this connection [knowing Elder Sackley] will bind her to Bro.Afful forever and the first she has made with a native Ghanaian.
This week we said farewell to Stephen and Rosely Webster as they completed their mission and returned home to Australia. He served as executive secretary to the area presidency and she as assistant, but that does not begin to describe all the good that they have done and the kind, caring people that they are. They were responsible for managing the boundary and leadership change proposals in the area - for example, that included 99 new units (branches, wards, stakes, and districts) in the first 88 days of this year. They oversaw the living arrangements for the senior couples assigned to the AWA (including finding new apartments to lease) , coordinated weekly sealing sessions and sister scripture classes, tours of area spots of interest, food for FHE, fresh egg deliveries, etc. etc. And on top of everything else he was the driver for getting the area presidency and many others to and from the airport - over 300 trips during the 18 months.
Elder and Sr. Webster speaking at FHE
We had the delightful experience yesterday of receiving help to accomplish the sealing of about 15 deceased ancestral daughters and sons to their parents. It was during a less-busy time in the temple and the president invited a couple who had come for the first time and three others to join us for that short session. Tender mercies!