Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A Great Week With Missionaries and YSAs

Our district has grown by two missionaries.
They are all the BEST!
A new district photo with our zone leaders at the left.

Zone leaders Elder Smith and Elder Litten are singing the closing hymn with us after giving us a great motivational lesson.At the Outreach Center Sara and Rebekka break in the new ping pong paddles.
Where these gals are, there is always fun! Can you tell?
I can't believe how the YSAs can play ping pong. They get six or eight players and run around the table taking turns hitting the ball and keep it going ON THE TABLE forever!

Brother Gregor Weidmann our institute director, subbing as teacher.

Cousins! Peter, in white, is now at the Provo MTC.

Each Day Brings Its Own Surprises

Take a look!
It was a surprise quick afternoon trip to check out an apartment in Wengen, where the views are breathtaking.
This is the view from the train station.
As we see Switzerland in between our work and on our way, I find myself thinking I can't quite absorb it all--that it is impossible to take in all the sometimes magnificent and sometimes serene beauty.

Elder Grassli is preparing for speaking in sacrament meeting in Interlaken.
(Keeping his gouty toe elevated!)
The high councilor assigned couldn't do it, and asked him, another surprise. Of course Dear Lenski included me in the invitation. He was able to do his in German, but I needed a translator.
We had the opportunity to explain the Outreach concept as we bore our testimonies of the restored gospel. Afterward we met with the wonderful bishopric who welcome our help with their Young Single Adults.
Another surprise! A couple, the Foxes, were visiting from California for an alphorn clinic, and they gave an impromptu recital following sacrament meeting in Interlaken.
They were good!

The ward members gathered in the doorway because it was cold outside!
It was definitely worth hearing . . .thanks, Brother and Sister Fox!

A morning in serene Emmental with one of Elder Grassli's sisters, Gretel.

We love you Greti! You are so much fun!
No surprise, there!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Drinking it in!

Today was our third zone conference.
President Matern asked us to prepare an orientation for the missionaries about the Institute Outreach Initiative. It was good for us to organize what we know in a way that would help prepare them to help in the centers where they do and will serve. We gave them the
What, Why, Who, Where, How, and When in a ten minute presentation.
It clarified the information for us, too
We enjoy the teaching of President Matern at these conferences. Today he taught about the history of events leading to the apostasy, including details that I had not known before. As I studied world history in my BYU Independent Study course last year, I learned so much about the history of religions and their influence on the history of the world and the development of cultures.
This today further enhanced my understanding from a Latter-Day-Saint viewpoint.
Truly the world has rejected truth over and over. How blessed we are to live in a time of restored truth, when the gospel is filling the earth.
And how blessed Elder Grassli and I are to be helping in our small corner, in our small way, to bring that blessing to others.
Sister Sims,
Sister Rogers, and Sister Luebke listened attentively!

Elder Andrizzi and Elder Ehlen translated the six-hour conference for me. They are good!
It is such hard work to translate. They have to listen intently, with not one minute of daydreaming or distraction, and it is exhausting! But they didn't complain a bit, and look! They are still smiling!

Mom, look here! Your elder made it safely and he is still smiling!

Relaxing for a minute after the conference is over.
The missionaries enjoy being together!

Start-up Week!

We worked to get the building ready on time, and this week it came alive with young single adults!
We started Monday with Family Home Evening, and it may have been one of the most satisfying FHEs I have participated in. Elder Grassli led the discussion and the insights from the "family" were stimulating and uplifting. We enjoyed a simple supper together in the kitchen.
Matthew and Mike, I'm not going to disclose how many times you filled your soup bowls!
But to be perfectly fair, the bowls are small!
Mike and Matthew are intense ping-pongers! Really. They are so fun to watch. Matthew even has his own paddle, and Mike is a focused competitor!
Tuesday before class we started with a meal of tacos and melon. We fed ten this time.

These guys were hungry! Aaron, you clown! But Fabian got a kick out of his mugging for the camera!

A few of the YSAs after Wednesday class and chocolate chip cookies. These are such great people! They come from the communities around Bern, some as far as an hour away by train, to attend class and be together.

We look forward to a great year with them.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Special Greetings to our Primary Friends

This post is a special "Hello!" to our Primary friends
who are meeting this week in a reunion at Betty Jo's mountain home in Idaho.
We hope you all made it safely and are enjoying the peace and tranquility of our Heavenly Father's creations and the loving hospitality of your hostess. I will miss being with you all! But as you can see from this blog, we are delighted to be here, and we intend to give it our all.
As you hear Karen's report of their marvelous humanitarian mission, you will know again how varied missions can be for seniors, and how well the Lord matches us to his work.
Our previous posts describe what we are doing. After the summer institute recess, we begin this week in earnest at the outreach center, and will have more to show in the coming weeks.
For this post I have just added our greetings to you and my blown kisses, and have included a few more looks at our beautiful Switzerland.
May our Heavenly Father's choice blessings continue with you all. I look forward to hearing about the reunion!
Leonard says "Hi!"
Blowing my kisses!
P-day morning visit to Blausee (Blue Lake). It's an incredibly clear blue little lake full of trout. We had some, deliciously prepared, at the little resaurant.
Have I said before that a mission probably should not be this much fun?!

On the way home from church in Interlaken.