Sunday, May 17, 2015

I woke up and it's 9 May 2007

This week we are in Ethiopia for a zone conference and then a presidency meeting.  How cool is that?  President and Sister Chatfield always have the spirit with them when they teach.  It was interesting to me what President Chatfield taught in Jinja, using time management, was ninety percent different than what was taught in Ethiopia.  I have no idea how mission presidents keep up with their daily tasks.  The Chatfields do so many more things than just worrying about missionaries - it is truly crazy.
One of the things he taught the missionaries came from a talk Elder Bednar used when training new mission presidents and their wives getting ready to head out in July.  President Chatfield said we are here on earth to do three things: learn, repent, change.  How simple is that doctrine?  Here is the quote from Elder Bednar; he “suggested that members ask themselves if they as individuals and as a Church will choose to keep pace with the Lord’s hastening. Or will we insist on doing things the way they have always been done, or the ways we are accustomed to or comfortable with?
Again, he said, each member can choose to learn, repent, change, and teach more effectively in the Savior’s way. “Or will we be so entangled in the traditions and patterns of the past that we will be unable to keep up with the pace of the Lord’s hastening?”
How many of us keep doing the same things and expect a different result.  We try and keep doing things our way and, I know this is crazy, we get the same result over and over and over…  We are too busy to accept a calling, to poor/rich to pay tithing, to set in our ways to ever expect to change etc.  I will try and remember those three words to evaluate where I am going and is it the direction I need to be going.  I believe the key is change, we have to if we want to live with Him.

I am so glad President Chatfield wanted a presidency meeting in Ethiopia.  We stayed for the rest of the week and I will post pictures over the next couple of weeks.  It is difficult to get someone from Ethiopia, Kampala and Jinja together for a picture so this was a perfect opportunity.  One of the men didn't bring a suit jacket so he had to borrow one from the biggest elder he could find.

Amharic sign (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ) outside the mission office and Magenania chapel in Addis Abba in Ethiopia. 

Off we go on Ethiopian Air.

Here we stop at Gondar Airport.

One of the first things I noticed was how much dryer it is here than in beautiful green Uganda.  They actually use animals here to help them work the land.

A horse taxi ride.  Sister Squire still has riding in one on her bucket list.  The horses and donkeys were a nice alternative to boda bodas and hundreds of taxis.

Donkeys do a lot of the heavy lifting.

I didn't have the Addis Abba pictures ready so they will come next week.  We visited the ruins in Gondar on our first night away from Addis.  This was the main castle - Emperor Fasilidas.

Another castle.  There are 9 of them in the complex.

Main castle.

Another castle.  The roofs were gone because of the bombing in WWII.  Most have been rebuilt but it is still a work in progress.

While we were here there was also a couple of soccer teams that will be playing later in the day.  This is their call sign. The match was between St. George from Addis and Gondar from....Gondar (St. George won....of course the referee made a bad call!).

This was the love seat and I could not help myself once I sat next to my sweetheart.

The roof was built to look like a saddle.

The back side of the main castle.

The Ethiopian Orthodox Church is the main christian religion in the area.  Here is one of their crosses.

Pepper, did you know pepper grew on a tree?  It even tasted like pepper, weird.

Pepper Tree, they are quite large.

Cool view looking out of one of the castles to the main castle.

Another castle.

The stable area and on the other side was a large banquet hall for the parties.

This was the Queens castle.  Every son or in this case a wife had to build their own castle.

When the queen took over she was not accepted because the royal blood did not run in her veins and because she had a grandparent who was Catholic.  Here are banyan trees surrounding a pool where she had all her subjects come and do a mass baptism into the orthodox church.  IT was then used as a pleasure area and they could come and swim.  The local river was used to fill the pool and it takes three days to fill.  It is only filled once a year at Epiphany, January 19 which is in celebration of the day that Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. It is 9 May 2007 here in Ethiopia, the only country that uses the Julian calendar.

This is the pool with guest quarters for the royal family in the middle.

If you need to run out to get some meat for dinner, it is always available (if you know a good butcher).  

This is a great photo to show how they build the scaffolding from wood along with the ramps used to bring materials to the top.

Our guide made reservations at the Four Sisters for lunch.  We were expected and got the welcome horn and salute as we arrived.  I did purchase one of these horns for Sister Squire to announce my comings and goings in a proper method.  I think it will be a lengthy process training her to do it right; she just doesn't get how important it really is.

Because it is the slow season we were met with a royal welcome, music and smiles.

Traditional costume and Sister Squire.

This angel is for the kids, may it always bring them joy.

Coffee is big here in Ethiopia and there is a ceremony as they prepare and serve the fresh coffee.

On the side you can see incense being lit every time they make a new batch for someone.

They have very intricate hair braiding.

The next chapel we visited was built to resemble Noah's Arc.

Inside you have the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.  The orthodox believe in separate beings.  This picture was outside in a shrine.

Another view inside the church.

A close up view.  The object in His hands represents the world and the dark is night, the light is day.

The ceiling with many angel faces with wings watching over the congregation and the church.

Our guide showing us how the use the drums.  One end is for the New Testament and the other side for the Old Testament.  The red color represents the blood Jesus shed for us. The strap holding the drum hide on represents the crown of thorns. There are three stones in each drum to represent the trinity.

Our last view was another palace for the queen.  Here are where the monks stay that help with the church.

The Ethiopian people are beautiful.  Here is a sweet girl who came and give us a wonderful smile.

Now there are four beautiful girls with wonderful smiles.

The queen liked to stay here when she was expecting.  It may have been a bit cooler because it has a bit more elevation.

One of their books in the museum with the cover made of wood and the sheets are of goat skin.

Even after all these years we were able to meet the Queen, her son and grandson.

Instead of boda bodas they have bajajs.  Three wheel transportation devices.  We took one back to our hotel after we walked around the town a bit. 

The statue is of the Emperor guarding the roundabout.  He talked tough.

This is the view of the Emperor when I called him out.  He couldn't get out of there fast enough.

Nice load or wood.  Keep it up kids.

Another taxi.


  1. Awesome! I love the big angel baby and all the other pictures!

  2. I too love the angel baby! What a great adventure!!

  3. I love the pictures of the castles! The African angel baby is fantastic too! (alysia)