Dear Family and Friends
Already this morning this has been an unusual day. Not only is it Christmas but it isn’t even 7:30 AM and we have attended a funeral this morning. It was to start at 6:00 AM but as usual 90% of the people didn’t show up until 6:20 or so. It was not a traditional funeral where we were told many people stand and praise the person that has pass on. It has been signified that most of the things said are lies so this funeral was a typical Mormon funeral where the bishop conducted the meeting and there was only one speaker which was or good friend Bishop Matswagothata who was not conduction with a rest hymn and then Bishop Mokwane spoke. They both did a great job speaking considering that most of the people who attended were not members of our faith. It was a short meeting and we are home.
By the time you receive this e-mail or read this BlogSpot Christmas will be over and the next exciting thing will be New Years Eve and then the New Year. Time keeps marching on and it seems that in many ways we have been blessed. The time does not drag in the mission field as there are many thing that need to be done every day. Mom and I love serving here in Botswana. There was only one white person at the funeral besides us missionaries. He is from Mochudi and his wife is black, she is a member but he has several habits that keep him from joining the church. He attends many meetings but isn’t strong enough to join and live the Gospel.
I wrote a note about this past week in a letter I was asked to send for the Patriarchal Dinner in it I wrote of having President and Sister Poulsen here doing interviews and being with us for our Christmas party here in Botswana. During the interview time I polished each of the missionary’s shoes as a Christmas gift to them. They were very appreciative of this. We had the Cardiff’s here from Monday until yesterday morning and they went back to Francistown 5 hours north yet still in Botswana. It was a great week and we are looking forward to a good one this next week as well.
Today some of our missionaries are going to climb Kgale Hill which I would like to do but my knees are keeping me here on the more level ground. My spirit wants to go but my body is keeping me here. When they get back they are all coming over for a Braii which is like an American Bar-b-que. I don’t know how much time they will spend here today as each of them will be involved with phone calls to their families.
This is the same letter I started a couple of days ago but it is now Sunday afternoon and I will add a few things. We only had the local Gaborone elders and sister come to the Braii so we were not crowed at all here in the mission home. It was fun and they arrived late so we only had a couple of hours with them. A couple of them came back to call their parents for Christmas on our Skype program. It was wonderful to be able to talk to each of you Christmas morning your time and late afternoon for us. Your voices and the fact that we talked to each of you made our day. We love each of you so much and feel close to all of you even if we are 10,000 miles away. Because we are family and enjoy the blessings of the Gospel keeps us together in so many ways. Again Mom and I love each of you so much.
I don’t want to tell you this next part but I need to. We are losing 5 missionaries because of the immigration department again. Our man Stix is putting things off until the last minute and the immigration department doesn’t budge an inch on anything. He promised us that he would ask for extended time for the immigration board to meet of either accept or reject these applications. Well with the Christmas holiday the board is off for about three weeks and he didn’t get that much time. He only got 10 more days which does no good for us as it doesn’t get us the time we need for the board to meet and it doesn’t get us to the next transfer date. I know I take this personally because I know it makes it difficult for President Poulsen. He is such a patient man and is much more understanding then I am but we know that this work is in the Lord’s hands and what happens must be what he wants. We feel satan's influence in so many things sense we had the meeting to become a stake of Zion here in Botswana. I think satan wants the missionaries to fail and we have wonderful missionaries so he is working every way he can to keep the work from being done. I hate to see our missionaries taking the blunt of this but my hands are tied and it seems that Stix can’t get it put together either. Let me end on a positive note saying that we know that in the long run satan will not win and God does answer our prayers. We just have to be patient and all will work out, I consul Mom and she consuls me. The immigration has been up to me and I still prepare everything but think I take it to personally when it doesn’t work out for our missionaries. The Gospel is true and we pray for strength and guidance every day and we receive it every day but not always the way we think it should be. I keep trying to end on a positive note but.
My family is the best and thank you for all you do to support Mom and me. In a few days we will be able to say we will be home later this year. Take care of each other as we know you do.
Love Out Of Botswana, DAD and MOM