Monday, July 21, 2014

Sending out a Missionary

I am thankful for the opportunity to live in the "Old Mission Home."  It does have its problems, and we are praying that it will hold together until we finish our mission in March 2016.  But, it does provide us with the space to have big groups of people here.

This week, we had all the missionaries on the island to the house for P-day.  It is always a wonderful day when they are here with us.  I didn't take any pictures of the food, but we had Cafe Rio Sweet Pulled pork, Black Beans, and Cilantro Lime Rice thanks to my friend Karissa Gille Dodds who has a wonderful blog,  We also enjoyed Texas Caviar, and a disappointing batch of mint brownies.  It was my first attempt here and they were overcooked and dry.  The missionaries ate them, but they were very subpar.  Next time should be better.

Here are some pictures from the day.

Hopefully you can tell that Gran Canaria is in good hands with these wonderful missionaries.

As usual, our week was filled with piano lessons, English classes, Institute, and lots of cooking.  But we did have an unusual event.  We got a call from the elders late on Monday night.  They had locked their keys in their car, including their spare key.  They were in La Playa de Inglés which is about 45 minutes from here and 25 minutes from their apartment.  They took the bus home and first thing the next morning, Elder Larsen started searching on the internet for the best way to break into a Opel Corsa.  He was testing out the clothes hanger method on our car, since all the missionary cars are the same.  He was able to get into ours, and headed to the missionaries with some hope.  After 1 1/2 hours of diligent, but futile efforts, they had to go for plan B.  They had already priced the cost to replace the cars small, stationary window, and it was by far cheaper than paying for a locksmith, which would have been $200.  I can only imagine the looks as Elder Larsen was beating the window.  I am just sorry that I didn't think to send the camera with him, until after he had left, so you will have to use your imagination for this one.  By the end of the day, the window was replaced and the spare key was in a safe place.  

We had our best turn out ever for Vecindario, with eleven young adults at the Institute Class.  Elder Larsen gave a wonderful lesson and we had our Cafe Rio meal.  It was a little funny to see one person show another person how to fold a burrito, but then they started eating it from the folded end.  For some of them, it is a bit of a learning curve with American foods.  
Sonny,Martin, Inzo, Dario, Fabio, Elder Larsen, Kimberly Irenis, Ruth, Luis, Inma 
(Cris not pictured)

Our schedule was a little different this week because we had a Zone Training meeting on Thursday, instead of our usual meeting on Wednesday.  We had all the missionaries from the island at the meeting and Elder Labaugh from Tenirife who is the other Zone Leader.  

Elder Labaugh and Elder Gentry

Elder Labaugh and Elder Gentry gave us some wonderful training.  Sometimes when I step back an realize that these are 19 and 20 year olds who are so focused and so mature in their daily work, it is truly amazing to me what a wonderful job these missionaries are doing.

 Elders Wiltbank, Shumway, McWhorter, and Thunell, and Hermanas Irigoyen and Grover

 Elders Poulson, Dyer, and Rawlinson

 Elder Shumway had an opportunity to share his testimony 
since he will be going home on the next transfer.
He is a wonderful missionary who has served faithfully.
We will miss him.

 It was Elder Wiltbank's birthday.  When I asked him what he would like for a birthday dessert, he requested cheesecake.  I have not conquered that yet, and our busy schedule did not allow for any time for experimenting.  They had a box mix that I made.  It was a far cry from a homemade cheesecake, but I did find some canned cherries at the British/American store.  I hope it wasn't too much of a disappointment for Elder Wiltbank.

This cupid has become the traveling birthday gift.  It was found in one of the elder's apartments.  They gave it to Hermana Grover last month for her birthday.  She passed it on to Elder Wiltbank (who was not here for Hermana Grover's birthday.)  He looks a little confused about his precious gift!

Josué, one of our young adults, came to English class.  He always has a great smile.

Elder McWhorter and Elder Thunell gave a good lesson for our Home Evening.  I love to hear them teach.  I feel the strength of their testimonies as they testify of Jesus Christ.  They shared a video with us that I really enjoyed.  It compares Satan to a fly fisherman.  I'm not exactly sure what that means for my son and husband who love to fly fish, but it is a good analogy of the tools that Satan uses to lure us into temptation.

This video is less than 3 minutes long,
 and is great food for thought.  
I hope you will take the time to watch.

And of course, afterwards we played a group game.  This time was just good old-fashioned musical chairs. 

I would say that Elder Shumway and Josué gave it their all.
(I was at the piano playing the music, and Elder Larsen conveniently lost an early round.)

Part of Friday and Saturday, Elder Larsen worked on cleaning off the roof.  These tile roofs are the perfect places for dirt to collect and for plants to grow.  We are hoping that getting all the vegetation off the roof might fix the situation of water running down the walls of the house during the rainy season. There is a part of the roof that has a thirty foot drop to the ground.  Elder Larsen will be hiring someone to clean off that part.

These were a few of the larger items that he found.

Elder Larsen had to quit his fun job early enough for us to be at Institute.  He gave another great lessons with some good discussion from our wonderful young adults.
 I never found out why David and Andres had a pirate costume with them.  

 I caught Jonathon and Gabriela with their mouths full.  I think they enjoyed the burritos.

And, Fran in an unuusal moment without a full smile on his face!

Saturday night, we were back in Vecindario for a Surprise Going Away Party for Irenis.
She leaves for her mission to Barcelona, Spain on Tuesday.  

 Irenis with her baby sister and beautiful mother.

 Precious little Gabriela!

 Fabio, Jenni, Kimberly, Irenis, Inzo
A great group of our young adults!

 Elder Rawlisnson, Fabio, Elder Gentry
With Fabio as the new ward mission leader,
there is no stopping the missionary work in Vecidario!

We attended church in Vecindario today.  We will be there most of the time now with Elder Larsen's new assignment as the high councilman for that ward.
Hermana Larsen and Irenis.

It is hard to describe how close I have grown to this wonderful young woman
 in such a short time.  
I admire her for her strength,
her faith,
and for her desire to serve the Lord.
Tears were shed as we said goodbye,
but she will return right before our mission is complete.
Her exciting adventure begins Tuesday morning! 


  1. Your blog continues to inspire and awe me! Keep up the great work!

  2. Thanks Susan! I can't wait to hear about your missionary experiences.

  3. So enjoy your reports and great pictures!

  4. it is a fun way for us to record all of these wonderful experiences!