Friday, February 4, 2011

Our First Companions are Now HOME!

When we first arrived along with President and Sister Packer in Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, it was President and Sister Jameson that welcomed us! From the first moment, they served and nurtured us into a new world.
I saw this on their wall but didn't know just how much their philosophies would help us survive our many challenging situations!  Their great humor and stick-to-it attitudes were contagious!
Lorraine and I became very close.  I was her shadow trying to learn and understand. She was so patient with me. Thank you, Lorraine!

The two Elders, with their matching Congolese shirts almost became a singing duet (without the singing)!

Then our new assignment to help re-establish the church in Burundi took the four of us to Bujumbura.

We worked really hard and finally took a p-day on Lake Tanganyika when the Packers came to visit. I think it was the first one for all of us!

One of our highllights was the Dedication of the country with Elder Holland's visit and amazing blessing on the people, the country and the government.

Lorraine is known for her wonderful organizational skills.  This was her "didn't think it would happen, but perfect" Christmas party!

Brent was mezmerized with the Burundian Drums.  Of course, he is a natural and very experienced drummer! He is also know for his CrAzY (but excellent) driving skills, his excellent French (and translating), his movies "with violence, please!", his love of Cheese with a little macaroni and spaghetti and of course, his love of CHOCOLATE!

President Jameson also is known for his excellent Priesthood Leadership!

Lorraine is amazing with people! She is famous for her great cooking, her writing and especially BLOG skills, her endurance skills, and her amazing french "without conjugations"!!

Another highlight was the formation of the Branche de Bujumbura!

Because of their diligence, many miracles happened while the Jameson's were here!

The first Relief Society Lesson was lovingly taught by Lorraine. The sisters love her and will sorely miss her!

And then "BAM", they were packing to go home with a new calling under their belts.

One of the highest compliments of the Africans is to give the gift of clothing.  Frere Methode had these clothes made especially for them. The design on the fabric is "Tanganyika Fish" so they would NOT forget who they had been with and where they had been!!

On their last night, we took them to the Belvedere Restaurant, which is where the men first ate on their exploratory visit!  It felt like we were coming full circle!

The next morning, their things were loaded into the truck! After all this time, they were really leaving!

At the airport, they had a little miracle happen. The Jamesons's thought they were set to go. However, the computer wouldn't show their tickets that they had used to checked in on line. Fortunately, on their entry to Bujumbura four months earlier, the airlines lost a large box of their things.  While they mourned the loss of their crockpot and Brent's only suit used as the packing material, they spent weeks climbing the administrative ladder to talk to higher and higher authority in order to be reimbursed or find the box.  However, in the process they made friends with the two top local administrators in the area.  Before going to the airport, President Jameson had decided to meet one last time in a desperate and futile attempt to be reimbursed with the number two official whose office was just steps away from the rejecting ticket person at her computer.  They weren't going to be able to get on the jet because the computer couldn't find their tickets nor print their boarding passes.  President Jameson took the few steps into the familier administrator's office.  The administrator solved their ticket problem, printed their boarding passes and they were on their way!!

 Talk about coming full circle, who would have thought the lost box on ENTRY to the country would have insured their EXIT from the country into the loving arms of those who awaited their arrival HOME!?

Funny, how just after the Jamesons left Bujumbura, the skies wept heavily! All of us here in Bujumbura will miss you very much!  Thank you for your diligent and loyal service to the Lord and his Kingdom here on earth!

1 comment:

  1. They truly are able to say that they 'returned with honor.'