Friday, July 26, 2013

Visiting Marie Sylvie

We met Marie Sylvie in January.  Yesterday, we visited with her again at her home.  She is an investigator who has a strong testimony and is learning more every day.  She is waiting for her husband to pay the "dote" and then they will be officially married and she can be baptized.  It is frustrating, but she is learning more and more about patience and more and more as she studies her scriptures.  She is so grateful to all the Elders who have taught her and she loves them to visit her.  She invited us to come visit.  She was teaching Elder McGrath and Elder Leavitt how to make Pistache (pumpkin seed soup).  They spent the week cracking enough squash seeds for her to make the soup.  When we got there, they were stirring and getting it ready to eat.  It sounds like she grinds the seeds, then makes a gruel (for lack of a better word) with bouillon cubes and fish for flavoring.  She cooked rice with carrots and green beans to mix with it.  There were big pieces of fish as well.  It really was good. You had to watch out for the fish bones.  Elder Leavitt said he just swallows them.  Yikes!   She gave us such a big serving, that we decided we would share it.  I brought banana cake, which the Elders told me she loves.  Her family ate the banana cake before they finished their soup.  She is such an example of having so little, but willing to share everything she has with us.  We shared scriptures, then she told us what she had learned from her reading this week.  I was humbled.  It was a teaching moment for me that I need to search deeper as I read.  I'm praying that she will be able to get baptized soon.  She will be a great asset to the Branches here.

This is her son, Frank.

Her little girl and her sister, who is staying with her for the summer.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Meeting President and Soeur Cook

We had a "Meet the President" Zone Conference with President and Soeur Cook on Tuesday.  So, Monday was haircuts and clean the apartments day.  I was so proud of our Elders.  They looked so sharp and their apartments were so clean.  We enjoyed our visit with President and Soeur Cook.  They have such a hectic travel schedule, with 5 countries in our Mission.  We love it when they come to visit.
Elder Davis

Elder Graham

Elder Leavitt - our newest Elder

Elder McGrath

Elder Gelinas

Elder Zurcher

Elder Hatch

I had my timer set, but I must have not set it right, so I just had to finally snap the picture.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Completing Transfers

There were some problems getting Elder's Visas into the Congo, so Elder Masse' and Elder Rambeloson were stuck in limbo.  Add to that a new Mission President and the confusion went on.  We were able to finally transfer Masse' to Douala and Elder Rambeloson to Kinshasa on Saturday.  So, two weeks later, the transfers are complete.  That was a frustrating transfer.  We are glad to have it over.  We are enjoying our new Elders.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

How to Buy A New Tire

Our right front tire needed to be replaced.  So, off we went to buy a new tire.  We learned a lot, including the French word for tire - pneu.
We started here, where we ordered the tire. We thought that we were making an appointment  for the next morning, but when we got there, they sent us to another spot to pick up the tire.
We ended up at this Toyota dealer, where we purchased the new Bridgestone tire.  When we asked them if they installed the tire, we were sent to another garage.

So, here we are at Firestone, getting the new tire mounted and balanced.

Elder Whitesides watching carefully.

They truly were pretty rapid, once we got to where we needed to be.  We were finished with the purchase and the installation in about an hour and 15 minutes.  We gave the man a bottle of water from the back of our car.  He was happy.  

Saturday, July 6, 2013


We had two baptisms today.  One was a convert and the other was an 8 year old daughter of a convert.  He was able to baptize her and was so excited.  When we arrived at the Church, the font was not full.  The Elders start filling the font on Friday and let it fill all night.  During the night, the City water was turned off (not unusual) and the font didn't finish filling.  So, the Elders took some buckets to a water source down the hill and filled them.  There was about 14" of water in the font.  It was enough.  The baptisms went well, much to the relief of all.