Sunday, August 17, 2014

Tree-mendous Week

We had one of our more quiet weeks this week.  It was nice to be busy but not crazy busy.  We Senior Missionaries have it made!  We had another baptism today and the Branch President had to leave for work so he had me welcome them into the Branch.  I thought back to when we first arrived in Africa almost six months ago.  We were averaging in the 20's every sabbath day.  Our Branch is the newest in the District and so it is just starting to grow.  This month we have been averaging close to 50 or more every week.  Our Branch only has 45 members so our attendance is over 100%.  How cool is that?  As we watch these new members come into the church it is wonderful to see the light of Christ in them and how their lives are being changed for the better.  We are such a small part of the work but we glory in the wonder of how a testimony of Jesus Christ gives all of us the strength to keep going. 

Joseph, who was married and then baptized two weeks ago was not at church because he had to attend the funeral of his brother.  He had died of HIV infection.  It is rampant here in Africa but many get it at birth when it passes from the mother to her baby.  They now know there is treatment and some take proper steps so that doesn't happen as often but many are still infected if they delivery in the village by the witch doctor.  They don't get to have the same medical care we get in America so the outcome is usually not so good.  I am so happy for Joseph and Olivia that now they know life will go on and they will have the opportunity to see his brother again.  In Matthew 25:31-46 we are told we will "inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world."  We need to do all we can to acquire those attributes necessary to return to our Father in Heaven.

It is fun to get around town and have people stop you and want to talk about Jesus Christ.  At the hospital I was able to spend a half hour with a sister who had been to one of our meetings 10 years before.  She still lives outside the area where we would have a congregation to support her and her family.  She may be moving closer to where she could then take missionary discussions.  We are always getting names to pass to the Elders or Sisters, we love it!

We took another trip to the orphanage where we serve when we have some extra time.  Our humanitarian couple are trying to put together a Church sponsored project to improve the condition of the orphanage.  Here are a couple of additional pictures of what we will be trying to get approved.

You can see the fire burning in the bottom and these ladies have to work in the smoke as they cook for the babies and the workers. 

The bags are full of charcoal used by most families in Uganda to cook.  They use both charcoal and wood for the fires.

This picture is in the kitchen next to the first picture.  This is how it is every day.  They have to cook inside so the children do not chance to get a burn.  We will see if we can get funding to install some vents in the ceiling to vent the smoke outside.

This is an area heading outside.  The ceiling has fell down and needs to be replaced.

From the outside looking back in.  Need new door as well as the ceiling.

Here is one corner of the toddler room.  The entire room is surrounded by cribs. Notice each crib has a malaria net.

On Saturday we have a list of places the guide books mention you need to visit.  We have been checking off the list when we actually have a preparation day that can be used to play.  Yesterday, we went to visit a Baha'i temple within a few kilometers from our flat.  It was really interesting.  They don't prescribe to any set religious philosophy but one of continual learning. 

"The Baha'i faith is an independent world religion, all-embracing in scope, broad in its outlook, scientific in its method, humanitarian in its principles and dynamic in the influence it exerts on hearts and minds."  Some of their principles are: religion must be the cause of unity, religion must be in accord with science and reason, independent investigation of truth, equality between women and men, abolition of all forms of prejudice, elimination of extremes of poverty and wealth, universal education, the eternal nature of the soul, universal peace and encouragement of high moral standards in personal life. 

We are standing in front of the temple.  Inside you can't take pictures but it is available for anyone to go and pray and contemplate getting closer to God. 

 Another view

Are we not the cutest couple?

 They also have a Center for Leaning where they conduct classes and other training.

This is the roof inside.  Nice woodwork.

Another view

This is the only real green space in Kampala.  Open land is used for living, not for parks.  We have not seen so many acres devoted to a park.  I see a picnic in our future.  I really enjoy the different types of trees here in Africa.

Prickly, like my (Kim's) personality.  Note: Nancy added the parentheses to make sure everyone knows who I was talking about, as if there would be any doubt.

Finally we always keep a camera in the car and miss a lot of really interesting things.  They have these vehicles, some very large trucks to haul people to be guards at all the different commercial ventures.  Here is a small truck and we counted at least 27 men in the vehicle with the ones in the cab.  Can you imagine being one of them standing in the middle?

Finally, our good friends, the Grundys, left for home.  They came for part of their mission last year then came back this year to finish.  They have a job giving flu shots and other immunizations each fall for a large corporation in Sacramento.  Sis Hannan is missing as she is taking the photo.

Elder Wallace sinking into the ground BEFORE we even had our first plate of delicious BBQ.

 Sister Wallace seems very concerned about his safety...

For Shelby, her new passion is bees.  Tucker was out mowing the lawn and ran over a nest of bees.  Shelby, Keaton and Tucker all got stung several times.  This African bee is dedicated to her.

Last one, I gave Sister Squire a hard time for all the stuff we did for the wedding in our Branch.  Once I saw this at the Stake Center in Kampala I quit harassing her.

Elder Allred wanted me to give a shout out to his mom and dad and let them know what a great job he is doing on his mission.  Well, he is!


  1. You certainly are a cute couple, but your shoes are ugly.