Wednesday Feb 5, 2012
We had another less than satisfying Skype with the Area finance people last week which put us in another small twit. Bob has been trying so hard to help straighten out the payment plan for PEF participants and has been thwarted at every attempt, so the finance man he has been working with came up with another plan and he and our director called to “present” it. It is not a bad plan but we felt a little railroaded but we are trying to be obedient.
This event caused confusion for more than ourselves however as we were planning to meet with Elder Cornish of the Area Presidency, when he comes next week. We felt we could not meet with him under the circumstances but then Pres Hendricks told us to go ahead and discuss the other issues we wanted clarification on. So we were off and on in a very short time causing frustration for Sister Hendricks and Sister Larsen who are trying to arrange dinner and chauffeuring for him and his family as well as Elder Rasband who is also coming next week. I am trying to help Sister Larsen as we substitute for Sister Hendricks in planning a meal and FHE with Elder Cornish on Monday evening (after our meeting with him), and lunch for him and Elder and Sister Rasband on Tuesday when they arrive with the Hendricks from Montego Bay—very confusing and convoluted process and situation I may or may not try to describe later. Suffice it to say next week will be stressful but uplifting I am sure.
Saturday we and the other senior missionaries had dinner with other visitors from Salt Lake; the Culimores who are in charge of all the Humanitarian projects in the world were here to tour with the Murdocks, our Humanitarian missionaries. We didn’t really get to visit with them but we had a nice meal at one of our favorite places. We have learned that having the nicest car in the mission has its drawbacks—everyone has to borrow it when they need to transport either visitors or more than 2 other people. We are trading again next week and the week following—which does not make me happy as I have grown to like that car and dread the trucks in this traffic.
We started a new month with our PEF calls and we really are getting much better as we are getting to know so many of the participants so well over the phone. As a matter of fact I talked to a couple of women in Savanna La Mar where they have a lot of participants who were really exceptions to the guidelines when they received their loans. I have really come to love them and am anxious to go there to meet them. I am thinking of asking one of them to gather everyone up so Bob and I can come there and meet them face to face, get their pictures and maybe eat cookies. I may do that.
Sunday we had a great Jobs Seminar in Constant Spring branch. That is the branch we were assigned to but have not attended much as we have been traveling. But we really like the people so it was fun to interact with them. I got a little energized and felt pretty connected with them and that helped Bob relax so his presentation was the best he has done also. We had 33 people participate and about half dozen sitting in the back just observing. We felt good about the presentation and the participation.
This young couple just got married and sealed in the Panama Temple in the past 2 weeks. He was a missionary here in Jamaica and a very outstanding one. When he reported at a District Conference she spoke to him and they started up a good relationship. She is very educated, he is not but he is spiritually very mature.
This is Devein Peart about 11. The youngest of 4 very good boys from a good family.
Sister Britton has been a member of the Church for over 20 years. She is a stalwart--teaches Gospel Doctrine, her youngest son is one of the best Branch Presidents in Jamaica serving in Spanish Town.
This is Sister Johnson, and that is all I know about her except that I thought she was so pretty I wanted to take her picture.
This is Sister Peart, mother of the darling young man above and one of our PEF participants.
Sister Singh is the wife of the Branch President in Constant Spring.
This is Shequil Peart the oldest son of Brother and Sister Peart. He is in his last year of high school I think and is really an outstanding young man. He gave a talk recently that was returned missionary quality.
We had an exciting adventure leaving Constant Spring and hurrying to Kingston Branch to meet with Pres Stewart. We thought we knew how to get there—however we both thought it was a different way—so we ended up getting lost in a not so good part of town as it was beginning to get dark. We were so lost we could not even call Larsens for help since we could not tell them where we were. We passed a big church we both recognized but could not remember it in context of where we had seen it before so we just kept driving. (Needless to say we did not have our GPS, since we knew where we were going, but we will probably take it with us from now on.) Though I was actually starting to get a little nervous we continued to laugh at ourselves. All of a sudden we ended up at the intersection we knew and were looking for but we approached it from the opposite direction! We really did laugh then and then again as we passed the big church on a perpendicular street as we drove straight to the church.
We got a call from the Area Employment office yesterday but somehow the call got cut off and he did not call back so since we know he has issues with us we sat down and wrote him a description of all we are trying to do in employment. We have not heard back so we do not know if he likes it or not and if he is going to ask us to do something different or something more—part of the drama of volunteer service.
Today we had another adventure as we drove all over Kingston making deposits in 5 different Scotia bank branches to test out the new payment system. We want to see if they all go through properly—hopefully that will mean the PEF participants will not have any trouble with the system.—we’ll see.
Another thing we did today was take a mother and her sick little girl to the pharmacy to get a prescription. As I was sitting with little 6 year old Ashley a couple of older women stopped to talk to her and leaned down in her face to talk to them. She was darling she did not shy away or even hesitate to talk to them and they just loved her. She really is cute. (I do not know why I did not get her picture.) Anyway as we were talking she asked me why I have such a small nose. I was caught a little off guard as I have never had anyone ever comment on my nose let alone how small it is. But as I asked for clarification she sort of referred to the bridge of my nose so I just said I got it from my mommy.