Sunday, December 2, 2012

Merry Christmas to all our friends and family from the Fiji Suva Mission!
The season is upon us, and we're busier than ever.  All of our missionaries  both  Senior (18)and regulars 82)
 are in town for  our  annual Christmas Celebration.
 These are the Kennerly's who came a day earlier with this family from their area who are here to be sealed as a family.

Saturday morning there was a zone conference that the Whitings (other office couple) and  we attended)  We  were all  asked to give a short presentation and then we four left to go get all the food for lunch and bring it back.  This elder is showing you how big the sandwiches are.  We used a long thin loaf of bread for each missionary.  We laid the bread on it's side and split it like a bun and then cut it in half so they each basically had a small loaf of bread sandwich.

Elder Whiting with the sandwich, next Elder Whitehead, Back  L-R Sister Muir (she and her husband are  on a neighboring island and will be finishing their mission in February) sister Whitehead, sister Sherry (she and her husband are in Taveuni, small  island north of us and will be leaving in March) We keep hoping to see some new Senior Missionaries scheduled to come and replace the ones that are leaving but haven't received notice of any coming yet.

L-R Elder Whitehead, Elder Sherry sporting one of our Fiji aprons (he had  peanut butter and Jelly sandwich assignment and didn't want to get it all over himself) Sister Whiting a key person to planning and shopping for all the food for our celebrations.  I'm already worrying about the time when they leave (August) and Elder Hogge and I will have to go buy the food Sister Klingler needs.  Feeding 105 for 2 lunches and a dinner is a big challenge!

Christmas Dinner, we stuffed tables everywhere they would fit  because we had a big rain storm and couldn't use the outside deck.  Elder Nawaqasema is Fijian and the only Elder who was brave enough to sit on the Sister's table.

These Elders and Sisters are a lot of fun and talented as well.  After dinner, we walked down the hill  to the
 Samabula  Cultural hall and all the missionaries did skits, singing and dances.  

More great missionaries

Aunt Janet will recognize Elder Laiti  and the two funny guys in the back are Elder Gatolai (who sang professionally before his mission) and Elder Deloi the biggest Elder in the mission. (he has a football scholarship with a southern Utah College after his mission is completed in January).

Yes I am the official pineapple server.

The senior couples ate in the kitchen

With all the visiting Seniors in town we asked them to each make a dessert and  had enough leftover for Sun lunch.

This will have to be short this week, because there's a lunch to prepare today (Sunday) and then all the missionaries are going to the first Church built in Suva (downtown) to perform in a Missionary Fireside tonight.  We are all excited to hear this choir of over  80 missionaries sing.  President Klinger, in above picture at left returned from a Mission Presidents meeting recently and said that our mission will likely double in number to 150 missionaries by the end of next year.  That means a lot more visa paperwork etc for me and 30 more flats for Elder Hogge to find!  We will be having a special dinner on Tuesday for all the senior couples and a fireside after with Elder Hamula our area Seventy who will be visiting with his wife.  I insisted that Sister Klingler enjoy her guests and leave the planning and cooking to all of us Senior Sisters, so my Birthday will be one of the busiest ones I've had yet, but many hands make light work, and I know it will be a very memorable one for me.  

We wish you all a very joyous season, 
and one filled with many happy memories with your families.

Love Elder and Sister Hogge

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