"And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up." D&C 84:88
Friday, January 31, 2014
When we attended we would travel to Soweto but the Branch met at a School just off the Western Bypass next to the Coal Fired Power Plant. I am not sure if I could find this school again if I tried. It was at a Soweto Branch Conference while the Branch Choir was singing "How Great Thou Art" that our Heavenly Father reached down and touched my heart giving comfort and solace to my soul following a heart wrenching loss. I will never forget the feelings I had as our Savior put his loving arms around me and as peace began to re-enter my soul. I will give gratitude forever to the members of that choir for the wonderful harmonized voices singing "How Great Thou Art" in that humble Branch Conference.
President Lekgoati was a wonderful example of God fearing man who was interested in doing “much good”. He was always interested in the youth of his Branch. It is thrilling to be in the mission field serving with his grandson. What a blessing and a pleasure to reacquaint ourselves with his family in this way.
They are a wonderful group of missionaries and it is a thrill to serve with them. In the center picture, is from left to right, Elders Ramat, Slabbert, Madsen, Sister and Elder Thomas, and Elders Ellingson, Lawson and Lekgoati. (More on Elder Lekgoati later.) After the District meeting, we then joined the Elders for lunch at Nando’s. I should let my daughters know that Nando’s is still as good as they can remember, in fact, it might be better than they can remember.
Thursday, January 30, 2014
Monday, January 27, 2014
Sunday, January 26, 2014
Saturday, January 25, 2014
Friday, January 24, 2014
We then switched to Elders Slabbert and Elder Ellingson. We taught several different people with this companionship and also met with a Counselor in the Bishopric of the Queenstown Ward and his family and taught them about Faith. We concluded with the final lesson with Daryll & Lianet's and Elder Slabbert chose to shown them the talk Brad Wilcox gave at a BYU Devotional in 2011 titled “His Grace Is Sufficient”. He had asked us to down load it on Sister Thomas’ iPad so we could show it to them. It was a very good lesson which I really felt Daryll needed to hear. In fact that talk is beneficial for everyone to hear.
All in all a very good afternoon and evening spent teaching with some dedicated and inspired missionaries.
Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Sunday, January 19, 2014
Saturday, January 18, 2014
Friday, January 17, 2014
Thursday, January 16, 2014
A short Email that we sent to the Steele Family
Last night we drove up to a small village to visit a member family. Their oldest daughter has turned in her papers and is waiting for her mission call. Sister Thomas and I have been assigned to be their home teachers. We were not sure where they lived so we persuaded the Elders to allow us to follow them there.
After driving for 30 minutes out into the African countryside we came to the village. As we approached the village we saw a typical African scene where a woman was carrying firewood on her head and she was headed back into the village.
As I looked upon the scene, appreciating it for what it was, the Elders' car in front of us suddenly pulled to the side of the road and stopped. Elder Steele, who was driving, was out with a bound and proceeded down the hillside to the woman offering to help her carry the wood. It was an act of pure charity. I took a couple of pictures as the story developed and wanted to share them with you.
There is one where Elder Steel has taken the wood from her. One where they are getting directions from her to her home and a final showing the path where they carried the wood. This picture is somewhat deceiving. The grade where either the women or Elder Steel had to carry the wood was over 30 degrees. (The Village is on the side of hill) Finally, there is one of Elder Steele in the family's home we were going to visit with Sister Thomas.
I got out of our car and had the pleasure of watching this unfold. This African Woman was someone's Mother or Grandmother. I have always been trained to treat older women as if they were my mother. This was drilled into me in my youth by my mother and father. I still strive to do that today. I had the opportunity to see this training come into action through your son. I can tell by this one act alone about the training that Elder Steele has received from his Mother and Father. If I can paraphrase the Book of Mormon. "He did not doubt his parents knew it."
You should know that your son is a pleasure to be around. He is a wonderful, faithful, obedient missionary that acts with compassion and love to those around him. We are grateful to be able to serve with him while he is here in Queenstown.
Our love to all the Steele's (who from your son's accounts is at least 1/3 of Nephi)
Elder and Sister Thomas
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
Monday, January 13, 2014
Friday, January 10, 2014
Dad had a small accident today and smashed a part of his ring finger on his right hand. Unscrewing a fan and it slid down the shaft and pinched some skin off the fingerprint of his ring finger. Not major issue but a pinched finger always hurts a bit.
Thursday, January 9, 2014
Tuesday, January 7, 2014
Today we got up early (5:00) and started to drive to Middleburg in the Eastern Cape. It is about a three hour drive. We arranged to meet Tinus Strauss and his Family who were traveling back from Mossel Bay to Johannesburg. The breakfast was really good and the company was even better, like a day had not been skipped. Good friends are like that and I consider Tinus as a South African Brother. It was good to see him again. Carolyn and I then drove to Cradock to deliver a DVD to a person who ordered it by SMS text. It was an interesting experience dropping off the DVD. The person was excited with our visit but did have some “out there” ideas. She was going to share the DVD with some friends and give us a call if she wanted anymore information. We made it back to Queenstown in one piece even though there was a great deal of road construction on the way and we had to stop at several road blocks by the flagmen. At the road blocks we did some planing except for one stop which ended quickly. The road was down to one lane for most of the way so you had to take turns.