We have had a wonderful week here with the temple filled daily, but more about that in a minute. First let me tell you about our family home evening. We met with the Spanish group on Monday. Hermana Tanner was in charge and she invited the Smylie family to come and put on the lesson. The Smylie family are members of our ward and Hno. Smylie works for the American Embassy here.
Hno. Smylie is a music major from BYU and he sings and plays the piano wonderfully. Hna. Smylie also plays the piano. The children each told us a story about Joseph Smith and then Hno. Smylie sang "Oh How Lovely Was the Morning". Then we got to play their favorite FHE game. They put chocolate chips in squares on a paper and we would pick a square. If you picked the chocolate chip on that square, you lost and didn't get to eat any more. But as long as you didn't pick the chip on the square, you got to eat every chip that you picked.
Jane enjoyed eating the chocolate chips but didn't get to eat them all. Hna. Guzman, Hna. Caballero, y los Rosados enjoyed the evening.
The kids really enjoyed watching the Senior Missionaries play the game. Hna. Wilson
Hermana Rosades didn't get to eat too many as she picked the wrong one right off the bat. After the game, we were able to persuade Adeline to play her violin for us.
She was very bashful at first but after I told her that Lucy Broadbent used to play for us, she was willing. She and Lucy know each other. Lucy and her family lived in El Salvador while we were there. We had a wonderful FHE.
Lucy Broadbent in 2012
When we were walking on Wednesday morning, we saw a man cutting down a tree with his machete, one branch at a time.
The branch fell with the next stroke of his machete.
As we walk each day, Lon is amazed at the condition in which that we see cars and tires. Sometimes I have the camera to capture these and sometime I don't. But here are a few of the examples that testify that we throw away tires way before we should. They have learned to use everything that they own to its full potential before throwing them away.
Some of the cars are in even worse shape than the tires. This picture really doesn't show the rust as well as I had hoped. The whole front end is rusted and there are circles of rust all over the car. But it still runs and is used as it is here one day and gone and then returns.
On Friday Patzicia came to town. They always fill the temple. Patzicia is a small farming town about 1 1/2 hours away from the city. They brought about 80 people. We spoke in their Stake Conference last year. We had gone to the temple on Friday morning to attend a session and were privileged to be able to officiate a session with some of these Saints. We remembered a lot of their faces from their conference and these three ladies remembered us.
They are always dressed in their traditional skirts and blouses. They speak both Spanish and Quiche, a Mayan dialect. They were so cute in the session. The little grandma would fall asleep and the lady on the right would kick her feet and wake her up. They had to be up and on their way very early to get to the temple by 6:30am. What a sweet blessing it is to serve these dear Saints. Our testimonies are strengthened as we feel of their spirits and their love for their Heavenly Father.
On Saturday our little temple was filled and overflowing. It was a wonderful, exhausting day. What a wonderful week. What a difference between last week and this week.
Today we attended church in a small ward with President and Hermana Burk. They attend a different ward or branch each week that they don't have an assignment for a Stake Conference. We went to the La Villa Ward.The building was the smallest we have seem. It is just a long building with the chapel on the far end and the classrooms along each side of the hall leading to the chapel. They had about 110 people in attendance, which filled the chapel. They had a real organ, very small and different than anything I have ever seen, but it worked and I was able to play for Sacrament meeting as they have no one who can play. It hadn't been played for 2 years. We pulled off the main road and down an alley and there it was.
Our van barely fit down the alley with the other car parked there. The church is behind the wire fence. It is amazing how the church finds places to build.We had to wait for several cars to leave the parking lot before we could navigate the turn and get out of the gate.
It is always fun to visit the Saints in their own neighborhoods. We have learned to appreciate the sacrifices and difficulties in the lives of these dear people.
We got home in time to have lunch with the Allred's and the Brubaker's. Hna. Allred invited us to dinner so that we could try her special enchiladas.Hna. Murri made us enchiladas similar to these. You begin with a tortilla, layer of meat and sause, another tortilla then top with lettuce, guacamole, tomatoes, onions, olives, sour cream.
They are delicious. We ended our meal with an apple deep dish casserole. The Brubaker's and Lon at dinner. Hna. Allred is a 3 year breast cancer survivor and didn't have her "hair" on because it was hot so I didn't take a foto of her today. Lon is now at the Temple for a special training meeting for the men coordinators.
We have had a great week here with rains to bring rich green color to our trees and grasses and flowers are blooming everywhere. We have enjoyed serving our Lamanite brothers and sisters as they filled the temple each day this week. Life is wonderful.
We send our love to you all. We are excited that we will be seeing you all soon, but sad at the same time to be leaving our friends here that we will never again see in this life. Have a great week. Dad and Mom, Grandpa and Grandma, Lon and Nancy