The Sun just continues to Shine! Wow! We are enjoying it - and the fact that it is only about 28 - 30 degrees now so it is more livable - much more humid as well. Seminary and Institute are starting this week with 22 teachers that we know of - we're not sure how many exactly in the Copperbelt. They are really trying hard to take the classes to the people because history has shown how hard it is to get the people to the classes. We hope this works for them - they are so excited about studying the Old Testament this year. Many of them grew up with the Bible.
Elder and Sister Carl Cook of the First Quorum of 70 visited the Mission, starting here January2 and spending part of the week in Malawi. We had dinner with them and a good visit the first day and attended some of the leadership training meetings the next day. We know why he was called, what a powerful, spiritual man and woman. They truly love the Lord and are great at expressing it, and at teaching and instructing. The missionaries came from the Copperbelt and they had a great time buying things in the Distribution Store after the meeting (they don't have one up there). A Great Day! A Great Week.
We were invited to dinner with the Public Affairs couple (the Louthans) - we enjoyed a great stew and a great visit. We both have initials behind our names so the mission doesn't get to put us to work for them as much. We both do try to get involved in things as they come up - us at the Dist. centre and Sr. Louthan is starting to teach a few piano students at the church (that will be so good).
We also had 4 of the missionaries over on Sunday night - they prepared us dinner (Elder Mosika is from Kenya - and he was the major cook). He started from scratch and fixed chapati's for us all. It took a couple of hours to get it ready before we could eat - we were all quite hungry and the missionaries had had a great time eating the home made cookies until the other was ready. We were all filled to the brim and it was really GREAT.
Sunday at church at the main building (Lusaka Bldg.) we took a picture of the big truck that the orphanage brings to church. They have to rotate who is allowed to come as they can fit less than half at a time in the back. They are such good kids - and so cute. Hmmm, maybe we could bring one or two home. There was a lady, her daughter, and her mother here a few weeks ago, trying to adopt 4 of them (4 are from one family and their parents are deceased (AIDS). Her husband sent her to see what she could do. We haven't heard what the government has said about that yet. We are not supposed to let these things enter our minds but you can't not think about it when you see them -
We have also been very busy with the PEF student renewals and the first time students. Their schools don't like to issue their invoices any too early - so then we are scrambling because they do want the money quickly. Just more of life's challenges. We also spent two full days this week at the Distribution Center - Sr. Teke has ordered in way more stock than the center has room for and we are trying to logically find the items a home. It is a big challenge - not easy to overcome as she says she has two more orders outstanding still.
This week our boss President Tasara Makasi phoned to say that they feel they are ready to Hire a Full Time S & I Coordinator for Zambia and Malawi. They wanted us to post the position in all the buildings so we did. It will close January 31, 2012 with the job to start March 1, 2012 (if anyone qualifies for the job). This is what we are now doing is being the coordinators for Zambia - so that MIGHT leave us open to other opportunities - we'll just have to wait and see what happens. President Makasi asked if we'd be willing to go to Malawi -
We think of home often and pray for each of you in your daily lives and activities. We know our grandchildren are growing up so fast and once in a while, feel maybe we are missing some important things. We also know this is where our Heavenly Father wants us to be at this time and we are happy we are healthy enough to be able to answer the call. We hope we are setting a good example for each of you, that you will have a desire (way down the road) to serve missions of your own. We love each of you, you are great family and we appreciate all you do for us. Thanks for your example to us. Keep us in your prayers, the Gospel is True.
Love, the Parents, Grandparents, Sibling, Elder and Sister Shields (you get the message)