Friday, May 22, 2015

The April and May Mission Leaderership Councils

Things change so much from month to month that I feel it is important to catch a snap shoot of our mission leadership.
This is the gang in April.

And here is the gang in May.
We are very proud of all of them for their acts of faith and devotion.

Back in Business

For those wondering why I have not posted in a while, it is because my computer crashed. It has been fixed as well as it can be for the time being and I hope it will hold together for one more blog. First let me catch you up on the comings and goings of the mission - literally.
These were our arrivals in March - May. 

They come from all over the world. The United States, Portugal, Mozambique and the Congo.
Here are three more that came in the next wave.

But sadly with every new arrival, we say good bye to many we have come to love.

We thank them for their service!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Monthly Mission Leadership Counsel

Today we held our monthly Mission Leadership Council. It seems the stars were all aligned because we were able to have all our Zone Leaders and Sister Leaders present - no cancelled flights or other complications. Our focus this month was on the third lesson, The Gospel of Jesus Christ, how to receive revelation, chapter 4 of Preach my Gospel, and then one of the Fundamental Focuses from PMG, how to begin to teach. And of course there is the council where we discuss problems and set goals. It is always amazing to watch their participation and see the Spirit working on them and through them in our discussions. As the leadership changes regularly in the mission, I like to take the monthly photo of our council. So here they are for March 2015.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

The Southern Zone Conferences

On February 17th we hopped on the Fast Ferry and headed to Fogo. You need to know first that the Fast Ferry is anything but fast. It takes about 23 minutes by plane to get to Fogo from Praia, but anywhere from 3 1/2 hours to over 5 hours to get to Fogo by ferry. It depends on how rough the seas are. This time it took over 5 hours. We did not get to our hotel until after 10 PM that night. Four of the Sisters in the Zone are on the island of Brava so they had to take the Ferry the next morning and though it only took about an hour, it was pretty intense. But the Zone Conference made up for all the travel woes. It went great! We have some amazing missionaries on the islands of Fogo and Brava!
The next day we flew home to Praia - in 23 minutes!. Then on the 19th we held the Praia Zone Conference. It is our biggest Zone but unfortunately because of Carnival this week, we were not able to get the 4 Elders on the island of Maio in for the Conference. (President and I are planning to go to them at the first of next month and give them a mini-conference.)  But here is the rest of the Zone. Again I can not say enough good about our missionaries. They are amazing!
And the last Zone Conference was held on the 20th in Assomado. It has been uncharacteristically cool here in Cape Verde this year, and since Assomado is one of the coldest spots anyway, it was especially cold for us there. Notice the sweaters. This is a great zone and they are here at a very specially time. The area was just made a District and we are counting on this group to build it up.

Friday, February 13, 2015

The Zone Conferences on the North

We do Zone Conferences every quarter. Our first stop this round was the island of São Vicente. We met with all the zone except those who could not make it from the island of São Nicolou, an island west of São Vicente. (It is sometimes difficult to get missionaries off that island and then back to their areas in a timely manner. Because Carnival is starting soon the planes and boats were especially full so we have opted to visit those on São Nicolou at the end of the month.) This zone also includes the island of Santa Antão, the island to the northwest of São Vicente.
Here is a photo of all who were there. There are a lot of new faces among this group so there is lots of training going on - and all are progressing very well. We are very proud of all of them

Our next stop was the Island of Sal. That zone includes Sal and the island just south of it, Boa Vista. All the missionaries were able to join together in this zone conference. It was a wonderful meeting.

Next week we do the three zones in the South!

Friday, February 6, 2015

Our Wild and Crazy Transfer

Transfers are always a rough week. They usually start off on a Sunday night with President making the calls to all the missionaries being transferred. That in and off itself means plenty of packing, lots of goodbyes, and several plane and ferry rides going all over the mission in every direction. It is a bit like the old game "Fruit Basket Turnover." But transfers also involve two other things. They mean someone we have come to love is leaving us to return to their homes honorably. Saying goodbye is the hardest part of our calling. These are the sweet missionaries that returned home this transfer. Some returned to their home right here in Cape Verde while others returned to Brazil and various places across the United States. We are so grateful for their service.

Transfers also mean that we will be receiving new missionaries to love. This transfer we were scheduled to receive 8 from the Provo MTC and 8 from the Brazilian MTC. But those coming from Provo ran into visa problems in Spain and their connecting flight was missed. Fortunately everyone rallied from Spain, Portugal and Cape Verde to make sure they were cared for until they could finally get here. While we were waiting for them, the 8 missionaries from the Brazilian MTC arrived. They are from Cape Verde, Mozambique, and Portugal.
Later that night 6 of our missionaries from the Provo MTC finally arrived. Unfortunate, their transfer flights had been purchased anticipating they would have arrived the day before. One poor Elder got off the plane from Portugal and got in line to get on the next one leaving for Mindelo. (I regret that i don't have a picture of him) The other five were taken to the office, given a quick orientation and their assignments, and sent to bed. Many of them had plane flights leaving very early the next morning.

Now we are just waiting for the last two missionaries to arrive from the Provo MTC - they are scheduled to arrive Saturday night. What a week!!! In the flux of transfers we usually hold our breath waiting at the airport for arrivals, or waiting for the phone to ring to tell us that all have reached their new assignments, or checking Facebook to see what has been posted showing us everyone returned home safely. Fortunately we only have to do this ... every six weeks!

By the way, the last two finally arrived. Welcome to the mission!!!

Our February Mission Leadership Council

 At the first of each month we hold our Mission Leadership Council. This one was a unique one because of the many changes that have been made - lots of new Zone Leaders and Sister Leaders! After the council, we give them some time to plan how they will present the training they have received in the council and set some goals for their zones. Here they are spread out all over the mission office making their plans.
The Fogo Zone!
The Praia Zone getting a little advice from one of our Assistants.
The Assomada Zone!
The Sal Zone!
The Mindelo Zone!
We are very proud of them already!