Tuesday, March 9, 2010

March 2010

Wow, what has happened to February? We love the work here and February has been our hottest month so far but it is finally cooling off a little. Mom is especially grateful for that. We have been busy with the Osizweni “twig” and District Conference. This was also held in the Osizweni building. We had 479 people in attendance and it was the largest District Conference that we have ever had. President Mann, our Mission President, presided but all of the talks were from people in the Newcastle District. The District is organized and all of the auxiliaries are fully staffed and have been involved in the training of the branch presidencies. We are excited to see the work progressing.

President Watson, counselor in the area presidency, was here for a Mission Tour and we had dinner with he and his wife and President Mann and his wife. We have gotten some name recognition because some of the things that have been happening in Newcastle (we’ll tell you what happened when we get home) and they remembered us from their visit last year. We loved the Zone Conference and were inspired by the talks from our leaders.

We told you previously that the mission has been expanded to include more of South Africa, specifically the Free State and the country of Lesotho. Another senior couple has been working in Lesotho and have done a lot of work with the King and Queen and other government officials. They will be going home in May and President Mann would like us to move there so we can pick up the work that they have been doing and make sure that it continues and we don’t lose the government connections. The Queen of Lesotho will be attending General Conference and tour the Church headquarters and BYU during April Conference (they are working out the last items in making this happen) so it should be a wonderful opportunity for us. She is attending Columbia University in New York. We have been involved during February with the expansion by finding boarding for a set of missionaries that have opened Phuthaditjhaba which is in the Free State. On February 28 we were asked by President Mann to be in Phuthaditjhaba for their first church meeting and we were excited to go. They had about 25 people committed to attend church but funerals came up and most were not able to attend but we had a wonderful meeting with 8 in attendance that day. I am sure that it will grow rapidly and fill the room they have been given by a local college to use for church services.

We love the Elders that are working in our areas and enjoy feeding them each Sunday evening. We feel they are part of our family and hate transfers when they go to other parts of the mission, but come to love the new Elders that are transferred in just as much.

We finished the marriage class and had a wonderful time with about 20 married, or those considering marriage, who attended. What a fun group of people. We loved it and they were happy for the class as well. They joke about some of the things they have learned. We are now teaching Temple Preparation classes. What wonderful people we have the opportunity to be with and serve.

We hope to have approval for a Branch in Osizweni before we are transferred to Lesotho.

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