4TH OF JULY 2010
Today was not one of those usual missionary days. A couple of weeks ago Sister Morgan and I were hand delivered at the office a special invitation to attend the American Ambassadors 4th of July celebration of the 234th year of the independence of the United States. The actual invitation is red, white and blue in official card stock with a raised embossed seal of the United States in gold. The reception to celebrate the 234th Anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America was held at the home of Mr. Stephen J. Nolan and Mrs. Judy Nolan the Ambassador and his wife to the United States of America here in Botswana. It was an RSVP invitation to notify his secretaries Natasha or Carla of our acceptance to attend.
Some of the Ambassadors important staff is finishing up there 3 year call of duty at the end of June and he wanted them to be a part of this wonderful celebration so he held it today. He and his wife and others of his staff greeted us personally as we entered his home. We were each given a lapel pin with the American and Botswana flags on it. We mingled the best we could and had to refuse drinks offered to us several times, we finally asked for a glass of fanta orange soda and Sister Morgan had a bottle of water and they quite asking if we wanted any wine or other alcoholic type drinks . Brother Peterson who serves on the Roodepoort Stake high counsel also works at the embassy and he did his best to make us feel welcomed, he even told us 10 minutes before the ceremony started where we could stand and be close to the speakers. I’m sure there were between two and three hundred people in his back yard which is very large and beautiful.
The ceremony was great with the U. S. Marine Guard presenting the Colors, and a talented local lady sang our National Anthem with all of us joining in. Ambassador Stephen J. Nolan spoke on patriotic things of 234 years ago and our great nation today. He ended with a toast to His Excellency President Lt. General Seretse Khama Ian Khama the president of Botswana. This was followed by remarks by the Honorable Minister of Foreign Affairs Phandu Skelemani with a toast at the end to President Barack Obama of the United States of America. The ambassador Nolan and foreign affairs Skelemani each made remarks of the U. S. A. soccer team. The minister of foreign affairs acknowledged the American team’s spirit and the heart they put into the game.
After the remarks we were all invited to eat. Many trays full of delicious foods were everywhere along with special severing areas of turkey, roast beef and ham. Again I had to grab an orange soda to avoid those serving the liquid refreshments of another nature. The celebration started at 12:30 and we left a little after 2:00, the party was thinning out a little but I’m sure others stayed until either the food trays were empty of the drinks ran dry.
It was an honor for Sister Morgan and I to be invited to represent the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at this special celebration.
Elder and Sister Morgan
Botswana Mission Office