We were privileged this week to assist the members referred to in the following comments (used with permission). The author is Elder Renfroe, who with his wife has served in the Tamale Branch and District for the past year. Tamale is a 12 hour drive straight north of Accra, and in some ways about 75 years straight back in time.
“Remember when Jane introduced Tarzan to New York City? That is what it is like for these good people seeing the Accra temple and a US style grocery store for the first time. Abraham just got back to Tamale from his village where he spent 3 months planting 2,500 yams. He had no electricity, no phone, no internet and didn’t think anything about it. He comes back to Tamale to the ”big city”. He is not sorry or suffering or blaming anybody for how he lives. It is just how it is. Christiana and Raymond have similar backgrounds being raised in villages. Now they are here gazing up at the temple. Abraham exclaims, “That is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen.”
They are staying in the ancillary building with air conditioning, elevators, and doors that fit and work. Each a new experience for them. When they come outside into the 85 degrees and 85% humidity air they exclaim how much more comfortable it is being outside. It is hard to imagine what is going on in their heads. Tomorrow the real fun starts in the temple. We spent the last two days in the car teaching the temple preparation classes.
Yet, what they will see in the temple tomorrow will probably far exceed what I will see. Their eyes are unsullied. But our eyes are covered with the clay of this earth caked on from years of exposure to the earthen ways of life in America from which we must be cleansed in order to see clearly. May we be careful to not soil them with things we think they need but don’t.”
It was a very busy week in the temple with Ivorian saints through Thursday and Ghanian saints who flooded the temple on Good Friday and yesterday. We concluded the day yesterday adjudicating the Ofankor Stake choir festival (and accompanying them all). This is our second time to do this and we saw a definite improvement in the choirs. It was an exercise in looking for the good where at times it wasn’t obvious.
We woke up this Easter Sunday grateful for Jesus Christ; that through Him we have the power to change, to forgive and be forgiven, and to love. “How great, how glorious, how complete, redemption’s grand design, Where justice, love, and mercy meet in harmony divine.” Eliza R. Snow