Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Missionaries In Our Lives

We are not always involved in the day to day missionary work of teaching and baptizing.  But we always enjoy the missionaries' powerful spirits as they come and go from our offices each day.  Elder Bettridge from Utah is kind, pleasant and always smiling. And as you look at these photos, you can see that all are happy in serving the Lord, and helping others.  We are uplifted by their examples and hope that we too can exemplify the love of the Savior for all.

 Sister Haynes, Polisetti, and Pea.  Sister Polisetti is from India.

 Elder and Sister Baker are from Washington and have been teaching ESL in Sydney.

 We are definitely multi-cultural and enjoy learning how to say hello in 7 different languages.

 Elder Keresoma is from New Zealand and Elder Shim is from Korea.

 This past week we saw 13 missionaries finish their missions and leave for home.  The next day, 12 missionaries arrived from the Provo, Ut. MTC and the New Zealand MTC.  Here are their tired but happy faces.  Sisters Tuilotolava, and Hoeft.  They are islanders from Samoa or Tonga - I think.....

 Elder Hoer is an assistant who is helping with new missionary training.  This is Elder Ripley from England.
 Elder Tilini, I think is from Samoa and Elder Aguirre-Reyes is from California, but they had some fun that morning, even though Elder Aguirre had lost his luggage.  The airlines gave him a $100 to make up for the inconvenience.  Not to shabby.
Elder Po Hung Lee, from Taiwan had a hard time understanding my English but when I held the camera up he sure knew how to smile!
 Elder Vaele is from Tonga?  and Elder Balenavaikau is from Fiji - he had been waiting for his visa since February.  And it has taken us that long to learn to spell his name and pronounce is correctly.  :)

 President Howes and Elder Feil teach them about budgeting and spending money and to help ease the pain, Elder Feil brought along candy bars, which helped everyone stay awake and smile.

 Elders Amsler from Switzerland and Matu from Tonga will be in the Sydney South mission - we will miss their jokes, smiles, and big handshakes!  They are close to the office and we see them at least once a week.
 Our weekend trip was to Canberra ACT - like the Washington DC of America.  It will be in the south mission so we needed to go down now while it is still with our mission.  This view is from Mt. Ainsley which is about 827 Meters high.  It is cold in Canberra - about 2 degrees Celsius but it warmed up to 11 degrees.  The Polynesian Missionaries really complain about the cold in Canberra.  After coming here, I can understand their moans and groans.  It is humid and cold - reminds me of Jersey.

 These next few photos are the War Memorial.  We learned about the sacrifice of the Aussies in WWI and II and Korea and Vietnam.

 This is the Capitol Building - and from there on to the embassies of countries from around the world.   Can anyone explain why the Polish Embassy has the largest sign in front of their building and the US has a small sign but has the biggest lot and the most buildings? :)  Something to ponder.

 Indonesia Embassy for Elder and Sister Greenway!  We were thinking of you.

 Finally, we went to the National Museum of Australia  and this man enjoyed taking us on an hour long tour.  We got our money's worth.

 This is a "map" representing Australia and all the islands.

This symbolic trail represents "dreamtime" in the aborigine culture coming to modern day Canberra.

 And as the sun sets in the west, we head for home in Sydney, where there are smiling missionaries and a heavy downpouring of rain.  Hagonee'

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Work in the Office and Work at The Rocks

Sister Haynes is getting ready to move to the Australia Sydney South Mission - notice her big smile??? She and her husband are from Brisbane Australia and have helped us learn about the office procedures.  We will miss them when they leave in a few days.

 The Fleet Elders are the Unsung Heroes of the office.  They help buy, furnish, move, clean, the cars as well as the missionary flats.  They go and do all that they are asked and are always willing to help.  They even helped move our piano to an inside wall when we first moved in.  Elder Puriri is from New Zealand with grandparents in the US.  Elder Leneham on the left, is from Brisbane area and Elder Gowans is from Centerville Utah.  Elder Feil has enjoyed several shopping trips to Ikea, The Good Guys, and Bing Lee.  Who knew Elder Feil was such an avid shopper!?!

 Elder Haynes and Elder Feil are always found together in this room counting out the money.  And paying lots of bills.  Elder Haynes will head south with his wife to sort out the Australis Sydney South Mission.  What will Elder Feil do without his constant Financial companion.  You will be missed Elder Haynes.
 These are the Assistants to the President.  They have been helping with the massive transfer that will take place this week when 13 go home and 11 come in as well as deciding who will be in the North Mission and who will be in the South.  President and Sister Howes spent hours praying, studying, thinking, and pondering.  The three - Elder Hoer, from Farmington Utah, Elder Thompson from American Fork Ut., and Elder Shim from Korea, help President teach, train, and transfer.  They are great leaders.
Sister Feil at the desk - she looooovesssss this computer and sits and stares at it all day long!  Notice it is dark outside??  That is because she is working at her new work ethic that her son Casey says she needs to get.  :) 

Play Day - off to the Rocks with Sister Jorgenson, and Sister Tanner.  
 This is the Rivercat that goes up and down the Parramatta River between Sydney and Rydalmere Park.
 Elder Kohlert with Public Relations is ready for his duties as tour guide.

 The amazing view from the river - notice the kayaker right in the middle.  Crazy blue both above and below.

 The Sydney Harbour Bridge.  And this is Sister Arvidson, another native Aussie from Adelaide.
 Brother Arvidson grew up in Sydney so he was the real tour guide for the day showing us his home town.  Elder Feil wants a hat just like his!

That is the oldest house in Sydney that they are refurbishing.  The stone house belonged to the Bay Master who watched over Sydney Harbour.

 And this shows why it is called The Rocks.  This part of Sydney is literally built on the rocks that make up this part of the Sydney Bay.  Today it is clean and beautiful and a mixture of old and new architecture.  There is shopping, eating, and art galleries everywhere, as well as historical monuments thrown in for good learning measure.

 This outdoor furniture is all made of metal and put here to be oversized and artistic.  It is in the Founders Park and shows the area where homes were build right into the sand.

 Elder Feil and the Old Tree.  Again a metal living room surrounded by apartments and ledges.

Couldn't resist a little tree hanging.  One of the first days of wearing pants - we were off duty.
 But when Elder Kohlert and Elder Feil found this lovely door they couldn't resist a little "door-knocking" with Sister Arvidson giving the usual "go away" answer.  Keep knocking Brethren, the next door my prove productive!

 This is another picture of endurance - the roots of the tree grow right over the rocks.  They don't worry about fertile ground, they make the best of a hard situation.  A great reminder for all of us as we follow the Savior.

This is a fig tree that was planted in 1992.  This shows what a little water, pruning, a fertilizer can do to help a tree planted in fertile ground.  Sister Baker, from Moses Lake Washington, Sister Tanner, from Payson Utah, Sister Jorgenson, from Washington, and Sister Kohlert, from Salt Lake City area, and Sister Feil trying to climb the tree - no success - she's too old!  In fact, we are all older than this tree!

 At the top of Observatory Hill with a magnificent view.  All six couples made it to the top.

 And this is out of order but shows us still working!

Brother Arvidson, up close and personal.

 Statue of William Bligh - remember that name?  I'll bet some of you have read about him.
 The narrow alleys in The Rocks area were dangerous places to walk through.  This one is Surgeons Alley.  And these are some dangerous criminals - or not.  Sister and Elder Baker, Sister and Elder Jorgenson.

Under the Harbour Bridge Roadway.  Where has all the traffic gone?

Some of the original old houses that used to be in this area.  Most were torn down when an outbreak of Bubonic Plague struck in the early 1900's.  

The enduring fig trees and the ever blue waters off Cockatoo Island.  Physical reminders of endurance, perseverance, and industry and the blessings that come from those qualities.   May we each strive to work and grow where ever we are planted.