Saturday, September 30, 2017

Last Trip to Dar Es Salaam

NOTE ABOUT PREVIOUS POSTS:  This is the 4th post I've done today.  So be sure to catch up on the previous ones.  I simply haven't had the hours it takes to go through my pictures until today (Saturday).  For Sister Munson and for Elder Rasmussen's parents, I've put up the videos of him singing Consider the Lilies.  And for you missionary moms and dads, there's lots of pictures of missionaries.  Enjoy!  And for Elder Hales and Elder Pavik:  I'll put up pictures of our drive in the Nairobi National Park in the coming days.  It was great to be with you on your last day in Kenya.

Now on to this post.  In September we made two trips to Tanzania.  The first was to Arusha to do a branch audit and also to go on a short safari with Elder & Sister Munson.  The second trip was to Dar Es Salaam to do financial training with the branch and district clerks.  This post has photos from our second trip.  I'll do the safari post later -- when I've had time to go through all my photos.

We flew to Dar Es Salaam (when you say it fast, it sounds like Jerusalem) on Friday morning and then flew home Saturday evening.  A quick but good trip.  We met up with Elder & Sister Jensen and Elder & Sister Lillywhite who were also in Dar for LDS Charities and Public Affairs (respectively).  We went to dinner with them and with Elder & Sister Munson who are stationed in Dar at the moment.  I realized that I never got a picture of us together.  Sad.

On the way home we had a good missionary opportunity.  In the Nairobi airport, just as we were going through passport control, I heard a young woman speaking frantically in French.  My high school French is not very good but I can understand a lot.  So I asked her if I could help.  She knew no English and it was apparent that she had never flown before because she was very confused about what she was supposed to do.  We finally realized that she was flying from Madagascar to Paris via Nairobi and Amsterdam.  But she didn't know she had to overnight in Nairobi.  She had no money and no hotel.  What to do?  We thought of having her stay with us but #1-- It's against mission rules to have anyone except family stay with us and #2 -- we really didn't know what kind of a person she was, and #3 -- I wouldn't want my daughter staying with a strange couple in a foreign country even if they said they were missionaries.  So we thought the best way would be to help her to a hotel.

Then the problem was how to help her understand what was happening.  I had an inspiration.  I called one of our French-speaking missionaries from DR Congo, Sister Mbaki, and had her speak to the woman to explain what was going to happen.  It was a wonderful idea and really helped the situation.  We were able to share just a little bit about the gospel.  I gave her a card and told her we were from L'eglise de Jesus Christ des Saints des Derniers Jours.  A couple of airport officials who were also helping us were interested so we gave them some pamphlets and information.  We will never know what will come of it but it was great to share the gospel with several people at the airport that night.  And that night, we prayed that she would be okay and that she would catch her flight and arrive in Paris safely.  We felt that we had been in the right place at the right time to help someone who had no power to help herself.

Now on to pictures of our trip to Dar Es Salaam.  We got to see Elder Barnard, Elder Elliott, Elder Konyana, and Elder Ncube.  And it was great to meet some of the African members of the church there in Dar.  Lots of nice street scenes in Dar too.  It's an interesting city. 

Every time we drive to the airport we pass this Isuzu dealership.  So many trucks!

And I've always found the entrance to the airport so interesting.  The cars all line up to be searched and the passengers get out and walk through security.  I think it's a great idea to have security as you enter the airport.  And only passengers with tickets can enter the actual terminals.  Great idea! 
We feel very at home here!

We were so lucky to have this amazing view of Mt. Kilimanjaro from the plane.  And in the background is Mt. Meru which Sister Munson sees from her kitchen window when she is in Arusha.  We have flown past Mt. Kilimanjaro 10 times and on this, the 9th time, we got this wonderful view.  Usually the mountain is covered with clouds.  Mt. Kilimanjaro is the tallest mountain in Africa and people come from all over the world to climb it.  I told LeRon that I thought we should come back and climb it.  But then we talked with a young man from Australia who said it was the hardest thing he had ever done.  So then I decided that maybe I'll climb it in the next life.

Following are some street scenes in Dar Es Salaam.  There is a huge Muslim population in Dar and many goats for sale as Muslims eat a lot of goat meat.

Interesting that Dar Es Salaam is pronounced so similarly to Jerusalem.  And interesting that there are many Swahili words that are similar to Arabic.  Salaam in Arabic has the same meaning as Shalom in Hebrew, meaning hello or peace.

I took many pictures out of the truck window.  Some turned out sort of okay.

Lots of market places along the street.

Freshly made juice.

Notice the woman with the bucket on her head.  So interesting how they can walk without spilling!

Carts for sale.

Love the colors!

This tree was absolutely huge.  Look at the size of those leaves!  This was in the yard of the senior couple's home in Dar.

Missionaries, members and others ready to play some sports as a priesthood activity.  Elder Barnard (back row 2nd from left); Elder Zingoni (back row bright blue shirt); Elder Elliott (kneeling front row second from left); Elder Ncube (front row kneeling far right).

I wanted in the picture so there I am.  So nice to meet the people and to greet the missionaries and see how they're doing.  They're loving it in Dar Es Salaam.  I was happy to see that Elder Barnard's sunburn isn't as bad as it was.

On Saturdays, many branch members come to the church to clean and to have various activities.  The church was a busy, bustling place and very well taken care of.  I was totally impressed.

Elder & Sister Munson are a fun couple.  We went on an excursion with them to the Ngorongoro Crater and had a great time.  I'll post pictures of that later.  Elder & Sister Munson cover Dar Es Salaam, Arusha, and Mwanza, all in Tanzania.  Right now they live in Dar but they fly to Arusha and Mwanza from time to time.

The reason we went to Dar was to conduct a training session.  The branch presidents and clerks all attended the session and a lot of learning took place.

I was excited to see this young man's T-shirt.  He must have been a missionary in the Kinshasha DR Congo Mission.  Build on the Rock.  Helaman 5:12 says "Remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless woe, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fail."

The man in the middle is President Malabi.  We knew of him from some acquaintances of ours, Bart and Wendy Smith.  Their son had worked for the US embassy in Dar Es Salaam and knew the Malabi's really well.

LeRon is a great teacher.  He even tried to slow his speech down a bit so everyone could understand.  English is not their first language here.

Elder Munson (back left) and Elder Torrie with the branch presidents and clerks.

And yes, this young man was a returned missionary from the DR Congo mission, which is (obviously) French speaking.  President Malabi (on left) is originally from the Congo and also spoke French although he has lived in Tanzania for many years and so speaks Swahili and English also.

The young man in the middle is Brother Malabi's son who is preparing to go on a mission.  Enrico (on right) is a progressive farmer here in Dar Es Salaam as well as a good branch clerk.

Here we are with the Malabi family.

The DR Congo returned missionary (on left) is the Malabi's nephew.  I took these pictures so Bart and Wendy Smith could see them.  Hopefully I can make contact with them again.

Enoch is a wonderful man and is the district clerk.  Has a great spirit.  LeRon's brother Wayne would say that Enoch is "shiny".  Wayne always said that when people glow with the Spirit of God.  And black people really are shiny!

We went to a fun street market.  Most of the women did not want their picture taken even though I bought something from them but this woman allowed it.

I bought some "tinga tinga" art from these people.  Tinga tinga art is a style of art started in Dar Es Salaam many years ago, mainly for the tourists.  Google says that Edward Tingatinga began painting around 1968 in Tanzania (Dar es Salaam).[2] He employed low cost materials such as masonite and bicycle paint and attracted the attention of tourists for their colorful, both naïve and surrealistic style. When Tingatinga died in 1972, his style was so popular that it had started a wide movement of imitators and followers, sometimes informally referred to as the "Tingatinga school".

This was just down the street from the tinga tinga art place.  I wish we would have had more time.  Would have been fun to wander through these markets.

Now I'm back to taking pictures out the car window.

Another street scene out the car window.

This is where all the clothing ends up that westerners send to help the poor people of Africa.  They sell it on the street!  Lots of used clothing as well as some new clothing.

Interesting to have a mosque in an airport.  Nice to see that people are religious here.

I wondered if a Christian Mormon would be allowed to pray here!  I think it's a great idea to have prayer in an airport and I respect the Muslims for being prayerful.

Our last look at Dar Es Salaam.  We probably won't be back.  But we've been here three times and that has been a great blessing.  The people here are great!

Missionary Arrivals September 2017

We said goodbye to five missionaries last night and today we welcome nine new ones.  All new missionaries come with very mixed feelings of excitement and trepidation.  So interesting to see how eager and yet nervous they are.  It's a brand-new experience for them.  We give them instructions and a lot of love.  It's very easy to love young men and young women who are volunteering 1 1/2 to 2 years of their lives to serve the Lord, putting aside all worldly cares.

I've put in a lot of photos of missionaries so you missionary moms and dads can copy pictures.  You are certainly free to do so!  Be sure to watch the videos of the missionaries singing that I'll put at the end.  There's a couple that are particularly interesting -- one of two of our French missionaries singing in French and then another of everyone singing How Great Thou Art in English, French and Zulu!  President and Sister Msane are Zulus from South Africa, as is new Sister Sehlako.  In the videos some of the new missionaries are missing since they were having interviews with the President.

Here are the brand-new missionaries in the Kenya Nairobi Mission:  Sisters Ziribaggwa from Uganda, Sister Sehlako from South Africa; Back L-R: Elder Mathemera from Zimbabwe; Elder Sunu from DR Congo, Elder Masamba from DR Congo, Elder Knight from USA, Elder Montgomery from USA, Elder Ntsomotho from South Africa, and Elder Mboyo from DR Congo.  A great looking bunch!!!

Now the new arrivals are with their trainers.  Back row L-R: Trainer Elder Fraga with Elder Sunu; Elder Mathemera with trainer Elder Call; trainer Elder Shongwe with Elder Masamba; trainer Elder Nyanhamo with Elder Knight; trainer Elder Gimeyi with Elder Montgomery; Elder Ntsomotho with trainer Elder Lotulelei; trainer Elder McIntyre with Elder Mboyo.  Front row:  trainer Sister Dhaima with Sister Ziribaggwa; trainer Sister Mbatha (her new missionary companion will arrive in three weeks); Sister Sehlako with trainer Sister Gondwe.

President and Sister Msane with the new missionaries and their trainers.  They are in the yard of the mission home.

Seems that on transfer days, Sister Msane does a lot of cooking and missionaries do a lot of eating!  L-R:  Elder Gimeyi, Elder Ellis, Elder Nyanhamo, Elder Mwashi (standing), Elder McIntyre, Elder Sunu, Elder Lotulelei.

Sister Ziribaggwa, Sister Dhaima, Sister Mbatha, Sister Sehlako, Sister Gondwe.

Elder McIntyre and Elder Mwashi feeding their faces.

Hello Elder Fraga!

Elder Montgomery, Elder Knight, Elder Ntsomotho

Elder Mathemera, Elder Call, Elder Masamba

Elder Mboyo, Elder Shongwe

Elder Call, Elder Knight, Elder Nyanhamo, Elder Sunu

Elder McIntyre, Elder Gimeyi, Elder Montgomery

Elder Knight, Elder Masamba, Elder Mboyo

Elder Knight, Elder Mboyo, Elder Masamba, Elder Montgomery, Elder Nyanhamo, Elder Sunu

Elder Gimeyi

Elder Mathemera, Elder Call

Elder Mathemera with his bed sheets and Elder Call with no bed sheets!  Sister Msane gives them all bed sheets and a pillow when they come.

Since I'm never in pictures I asked someone to take my picture with all these great missionaries. Elder Mathemera, Elder Call, me, Elder Nyanhamo, Elder Sunu, Elder Montgomery.

Hi Elder Knight!

Elder Sunu, Elder Nyanhamo, Sister Torrie, Elder Knight

And then there is the traditional singing together that we do each evening.  I was tired and thought we ought to go home but Sister Msane said, "Elder Torrie, don't let Sister Torrie talk you into NOT singing tonight!"  It's actually a really good way to pass the evening.  Singing brings an amazing spirit.  L-R: Elder Masamba, Elder Mboyo, Elder McIntyre, Sister Gondwe, Sister Mbatha.  Elder Torrie at the piano.

Front and center are two of our French missionaries from DR Congo -- Elder Masamba and Elder Mboyo -- and Elder McIntyre.  Elder Mwashi on left.

It's always great when President Msane joins in the singing.  Because he joined the church as an adult he is just now learning the Primary songs.

Elder Sunu and Elder Mboyo are both from French-speaking DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo).  In front are Sister Ziribaggwa and Sister Sehlako.

Sister Mbatha, Elder Mwashi and Elder Shongwe.

Elder Fraga, Elder Knight, Elder Mboyo

Elder Shongwe, Elder Torrie (gray-haired in back), Elder Mwashi, Elder Sunu

Elder Call, Elder Mathemera, Elder Ellis

Elder Ntsomotho, Elder Masamba, Elder Montgomery

Dish-doing missionaries.  Yeah!!  Sister Mbatha, Sister Sehlako, Elder Mathemera.

Elder Call, Elder Fraga, Elder Sunu

Elder Masamba, Elder Mboyo and Elder McIntyre singing their hearts out.  

Elder Masamba and Elder Mboyo.  Be sure to check out the videos below, particularly the one where Elder Masamba and Elder Mboyo are singing French.  They are looking at the English hymnbook and singing in French.  I don't know how they do it!!

We love our missionaries!!  Here we are with Elder Call.

And here we are with new Elder Mboyo and Elder Masamba

And we love our sister missionaries.  Here we are with Sister Gondwe from Zambia.

And here we are with Sister Mbatha from South Africa.