Tuesday, March 27, 2012

This is the Missing Rooster in the last Blog - he took off and did not return from my computer.  Sorry!

The Infamous Rooster - and the old story of you never hearing the train when you live near the tracks is not true with the Rooster - he has a 40 second delay and he goes all night every night.

 Woodlands Primary - they are a wonderful group of beautiful children and leaders too.
Johannesburg Temple - a Great Treat on the Visit
Chainama Branch Seminary Class - partially anyway, A Great Group of Young People, Missionaries and of course, Elder Shields

Friday, March 23, 2012

What a Great Month!
It seems we have been remiss at writing in this spot this month - however, most of you got a couple of updates during the month of what has been happening here in Lusaka, and around the country (this side).  ("This side" and "the other side" are very common phrases here that people use when someone does not stay close to them - they stay "on the other side" or " yup, on this side".  It takes a while to know what they are saying - and where they mean.  We are getting on with our Nyinja learning,  a little - because we will need to speak Chewa in Malawi.  In Nyinja, we are able to say Muillo Buonge - hello, how are you - with the answer being  bweeno - or fine.  We have also learned thank you"" - zikomo  or thank you very much"" - zikomo kwambili.  A couple of great phrases to try to remember.

We have been busy this month and have reaped many many blessings for trying to do the Lord's will.  If any of you are having challenges - this is the solution!!!  As we are shown daily here, if we do our part, the Lord picks up the rest and the benefits and the outcome are truly wonderful miracles.
Old Testament is the Book of Study in Seminary and Institute this year and at first I thought (oh, no, this is not a book I've studied a lot - Elder either, he said.  We have been doing most of our daily study from there and can truly say that we are learning and growing with the students.

We have had the opportunity to do many firsts this month - go to Jo'burg, dress the unembalmed, go to the hospital here (to take an Elder from next door), go to the Dentist (Elder), try individual in service lessons, help the young man who MAY take our place here (we're praying he gets the job), be addressed by our Area Presidency, be addressed by Elder Kelly Hawes (over S & I) via Skype, fixed dinner for a single mom with 14 children the elders wanted to take dinner to (it was her birthday), had 2 couples over for dinner and a visit (dishes are a challenge - and I don't want to buy more as we can't take them with us).

 We are truly watched over and blessed Each and Every Day.  Through prayer we have been reminded that we speak to the Savior, and through reading our scriptures, He speaks to us.  What a power that can be to us.

Johannesburg is just a regular looking up to date city - we felt like we'd gone back to civilization.  Lusaka is more "Original - as it has been for generations, in our minds.  And we are not complaining about Lusaka, it is a beautiful City with beautiful people.  We have learned to love and respect Many of them.  We will miss them in changing countries.

We have another busy weekend coming up - starting Today actually.  Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are our busiest days.  The others are preparation time, do errand time, housecleaning, laundry, you know, the usual things that just don't go away.  This weekend we are going to do a party for Seminary in Chainama at 14:00 for about 20 or so.  Then visit the Libala Branch's 9 a.m.Institute class and surprise them with Breakfast (could be up towards 30).   I wish I had a rolling pin for the Cinnamon Buns (but taking it by air, on our move to Malawia, doesn't make me want to buy one here). We need to pick up our basketball, and our volleyball and net, etc. to take them to the Seminary party. We need to get prizes for the games, go to the Distribution Store for a bit, and if we get the chance, visit Matero's S & I and visit with the teacher (,Kasonde Ilunga), who getting married next weekend,and is our only teacher there. He is an awesome young man.

On Sunday we will visit  a branch at 9 a.m. and then go to the Woodlands branch, at 11 AM, because we are going to have the Primary do a coloring activity for us to send back to Midnapore Ward Primary.  Our primary children have sent us letters and pictures twice - we feel blessed.  We thought we'd have the kids here do something to send back - with their picture.  Hopefully this works.  After that, we have been invited to a baptism of 3 young men - one 27, one 14, and I can't remember the age of the other, sorry.  Most branches baptize 2-3 people every month or so.  Most of them youth or young adults.  Great people.

We took the Bauleni group some crayons and paper, etc. quite a few weeks ago and they had no idea what to do with them.    I don't know what they do with their children here - but it is amazing - no food, no papers, books, anything, and they sit quietly through church every week.  We haven't figured out the secret yet - maybe it is the Nshima they eat, but boy, they are good.

We know that as each of you live as you should, Blessings will be yours.  We keep you all in our prayers and hope we are in yours.  We look forward to hearing from you - we have received many letters from people in the ward (yes, mailed ones).  It is Great - but emails are Great too.

We have less busy times, and then we think we must be being lazy.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

 Happy Birthday Elder - He loved it.
 Few potholes - they go all the way across
 Pres. Kabonso with Primary children
 Finishing floor in new chapel
 Large Termite Hill
We're still in learning curve on this - if we save the draft then can't figure out how to attach the pictures to it - so here they are on their own - but they go with the last post.  This is Burton's latest dream truck - thinks we should have one - it's very appropriate for the roads here.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Birthdays do go on even in Zambia.  Elder Shields turned another year older last week.  The BIG 70 - and he doesn't look a day older!  We even found him a Chocolate Cake to eat - pricey - but hey, when that's your Birthday present, it's worth it.  Oh, actually Elder got the privilege of checking out a Zambian Dentist - the tooth that had broken before and been put in by the orthodontist broke again and fell out.  We took it with us and the Dentist put it back in -  all went very well.  She was trained in South Africa.  

We were invited to the Lookharts for Burton's birthday dinner - it was great!  We enjoyed the evening.  Friday we went for another drive to the Copperbelt - this time we were able to get the majority of the reports we'd been trying to get.  The members in the Copperbelt really feel they need a missionary couple up there to help with their branches.  Some are SOO new to the church and put into leadership positions that they need help learning what is expected of them.  They really feel the mantel of their callings - and they take it to heart.  They are wonderful people, but can get overwhelmed with things when they don't have phones, computers, addresses, transportation, or helpers in many instances.  What they do have is a Love of their Savior - and they recognize Him in their lives.  We did go out to Kawama Branch on Saturday afternoon (the road doesn't exist really), to see how it was coming along - they are building a Chapel for them - they meet in an old house - that is all that is available in their compound.  They are very excited to have a better place to meet - We then went on Sunday morning to visit Ndola branch - it was Fast Day!  There were no pauses during the meeting and the testimonies born were wonderful.  We felt very uplifted when we left.  We are very blessed to be here to associate with these wonderful people.   

Today we took the car in for an oil change - they called to say something is broken underneath - and we aren't the least bit surprised - the roads leave much to be desired.  Elder does worry a lot about the car and the roads - the ruts are SOOO deep that we are hitting bottom too often - even at 1 KPH -  It's good that it'll be fixed for the new person.  We hear we are getting a Toyota Hilux in Malawi in place of our little Corolla.  Gas wise, we'll probably miss the Corolla.  Malawi is much hillier? (is that a word) than Zambia. 

We are busy working on reports of all kinds, to have them Done before we go to J'berg next week for 4 days.  We do need the car back to go to some of the branches and pick up reports to be able to enter them.  We are able to do that (we have transportation), they do not and transport is expensive for them.  A Big Challenge.

We've had a big shakeup of missionaries - 7 or so came over from Malawi to Zambia - and about the same went the other direction.  So, it's kind of like everyone is getting used to a new area - some are better at that than others.  The Work goes on - it's so rewarding to be part of it, even if our part seems quite small.  We are grateful that we chose to come to Zambia to do the Lord's Work.  We see his hand in our lives each and every day in the things we do and the choices we make.  We know he protects and helps us to know what he wants us to do. 

O.K. I was going to add some pictures of all of the above but just discovered that the camera is still in the Lookharts truck (they brought us back from the dealership).  It will have to wait until tomorrow afternoon so I won't publish this yet. 

To Whoever Reads This:  BE THE BEST YOU CAN BE!