Sunday, October 6, 2013

Bula bula!  This is Freddy the frog who was on our porch waiting for us to come home.  The days are going by so fast and we seem to be getting more and more things to fit into our week, but it's all good

Elder Hogge and I went shopping for some gifts to bring home and I thought you'd enjoy seeing a little of the colorful city Suva is.  Note the wavy rail that must have been hit a few times by cars.

Yes, we have dollar stores here in Fiji.  Patel is a very common Indian name here.

Another Dollar store was advertised to be up stairs from this sign...I'll pass

The next pictures are from the lunch we had last weekend at the pearl.  Ya got to love the signs
What it's telling you is that there are coconuts that will fall from the tree.  They are so big and heavy, I'm told that if one falls and hits you on the head it can kill you.  So I guess this is a good sign, just funny way of putting it.

At entrance to The Pearl

Yes I found some cool flowers here too

Iris or Orchid?

This one is common here and used in a lot of arrangements at church on Sunday
It is called Parrot's Beak

Pretty Lily bloom in a pot near the hotel

This dancer posed for me.  He is dressed in the early traditional clothing Fijians used to wear (Similar to what Elder Johnson described when he told Sister Maiwiriwiri that her husband was needed on the other side to teach) 

These dancers really made some loud sounds as they performed

The gang who showed up for lunch.  Some of them came up at 7 am and went out on a boat to snorkel.  They said it was stormy and the water was choppy causing some of the guests to loose their cookies.

View from our table.  The Dr Zuess looking trees are called Pandan and their leaves are used for weaving mats.

I took this picture of the pool just before Richard kiddingly said I'll go take some pictures of the pool meaning see if there are any pretty girls over there, but his joke went right over my head.

Joyce, Mary, Pat, Leroy, Richard, Dick

This was in bloom right next to the entrance to the Service Centre 

I made a double batch of sugar cookies and a picnic cake for the missionaries who come in on Monday (P-day) to get mail etc.  We drove to Lami after work to drop off something to the Elders and this boy came up to the car saying Elder Whiting.  I told him I knew Elder Whiting, and he excitedly told us he just got baptized, then saw my Picnic cake, asking is that food?  I pulled off the foil, wrapped 3 pieces of cake in it for him, telling him congratulations and took his pic.

Lunch for 22 training meeting. I fake a few fruit pizza's for dessert.

Elder's Mabung, Ohlson, , Andrews, Treamea, S Smith, Tausinga, Palmer, LeDoux

Mabunga, Smith, Tausinga, Sister Fanene, Elder Palmer, LeDoux, Olmstead (techie who helps me with computer stuff)

President Klinger whipping up some lemonade Crystal Light, Sister Sua & Lavatai

Elder Hogge needed drapes for four flats so I was elected to go along and help him.  These are fancy Taj Mahal type drapes with beads... I don't think so

This is the Bula material I have used for 8-10 flats and I just vary the background color in each flat, cute material but
I'm tired of it, so we found this striped material that is suitable for either Elder's or Sister's as we have
had an Elder's flat become a sister's flat in certain circumstances. 

I had to smile when I saw this floor as I waited for the curtain calculations.  I think they laid the tile from opposite sides and came up short so they just added a sliver of tile to make it work, Fiji style.

Just outside Rupts is this interesting Christian Ministry The barrels are filled with dirt to shore up the rock wall.

One of several uniquely Fijian terms  Law-by = layaway pegs =clothespins,
twink=white out used for paper, china=bananas

We delivered a table from an Elder's flat to the Collins and found a big bowl of fresh fruit.  The big spiny one on the left is soursop, not only does it make you pull a face if you drink it but it looks uninviting (Elder Collin's loves it) 

These interesting flowers remind me Christmas is just around the corner.  There was a pile of
garbage to the side of them that I managed not to take a picture of.

The Wells went to judge some choirs at an all day stake event and when they came over for dinner and a game of Canasta brought us some raw sugar cane and this huge green coconut.  It was so heavy it felt like a bowling ball.

Sunday we had a spiritual feast at church.  Sister Irava chose the subject of Sacrifice for her lesson.  We broke into four groups, read and discussed certain scriptures then shared with the Sisters. One sister shared that she gave up custody of her children to her EX husband, because she couldn't support them and said  "I have sacrificed much to become a member of this church.  I'm alone every night, but have put my trust in the Lord."  Many other sister's shared tender testimonies and it was one of the best RS meetings I've attended.

Sister Meresi Talitoga, our Sunday School teacher taught us about joy in temple and Family History work.  She is an elementary school teacher and expresses herself well and is actively doing family history.  She shared the following stories to illistrate that special experiences come, when you are doing the work for you ancestors.  She was at the family history center with her mother and other family members and found the name of a man who she felt was a member of her family.  She needed something from her school room (which is just behind the family history centre) and hurried over to get it.  It was a calm night, all the windows were closed, and she entered the room in the dark because she knew right where the item was and sheets of paper on the walls began flapping vigorously.  She felt impressed to say "if you are happy about my finding your name shake the papers again, and they again began flapping.  This was exciting to her, but also a little scary so she quickly left the room and returned to her family.  Showing her mother the name, she asked  is this man someone in our family?" and in typical Fijian fashion (her words) her mother said "yes, he was a bad man, don't baptize him!" but she did pursued it feeling that he had been taught the gospel and wanted his work to be done.

She told us about a sister who was in the celestial room and several temple workers saw a woman behind her with her hand on her back , saying "help me" when the woman turned, thinking one of the workers touched her back, they said no but we saw a spirit behind you.  As they described her she knew who it was, but wondered why.  The spirit was someone she knew who had passed away three days earlier .  She spoke to the temple president to ask why this had happened to her and he counseled with her that the Lord sometimes opens the door for a spirit to find help in having their work done for them.

She also shared an experience a man whom she knows, who does a lot of genealogy.  He had gone to the library where very old historical books are kept and asked for a certain book.  The librarian was suspicious of him and said "unexplained things happen when you come and asked  why?  He told her that he held the priesthood of God and she told him she would be watching him from the desk she sat at a short distance away.  As he looked through the book he found many names and then two male spirits appeared to him telling him to put the book under his arm and follow them,  He said "I can't do that there's a door over there that beeps if you try to leave with a book.  They insisted and with one in front of him and one behind him , he obeyed walking past the woman as if he were invisible.  The person at the door was occupied and didn't stop them and no alarm went off.  When he returned to his home, he began recording the names in the book and continued working day and night without sleep until it was completed.  The two spirits left and the man and when he returned to the library and handed the book to the same woman, she was astonished and said that book had never been out of that room before then.  He explained that he needed he book to get names for genealogy and she took the book without complaint and asked to know more about the church.

We love and miss you all and hope you will find happiness in whatever work you are called to do
for the Lord at this time in your life.

Vinaka  Elder and Sister Hogge

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