Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Bitter and the Sweet

The past week has been filled with preparations for Transfer Day. In the office, each of us have assignments that kept us very busy, from early morning until into the evening. Sister Thompson has been preparing letters for the incoming [eight of them] and departing missionaries [a dozen of them!] Plus, preparing passports, visas, departure packets...and the list goes on. She does such a perfect job with all of her tasks. Elder Thompson makes sure all of the new elders have their allotment cards and cars/bikes, taking care of packages, and purchases of personal missionary supplies. Elder Allred is busy keeping the elders' flats in good repair, [delivering new replacements of furnishings and appliances], keeping all the mission bills paid [flats leases, utilities, phones] and keeps the elders' phones working. President Dunn and the APs have been for weeks, working on transfers, along with the daily workings of the mission. Such a big job! Sister Dunn is her usual self, accomplishing everything to do with the mission running smoothly. 
This transfer we received 3 missionaries from the Johannesburg MTC at 7 am. The new tradition has our departing elders walk to the MTC to welcome and bring them to the mission office. I took photos of the event, and it is a delight to watch the joy and excitement in the faces of our incoming elders, and the joy on the faces of our elders who are preparing to return home after two years serving the Lord. I can just imagine the thoughts and feelings going through their heads as they remember that same experience, two years ago! 

Here our departing elders are walking to the MTC

Elder Reed and Elder Pedersen with new missionary Elder Paul

Elder Stephens bringing Elder Woniala from the MTC
President and Sister Dunn with Elder Woniala

Elder Reed and Elder Paul

Elder Paul with President and Sister Dunn

Elder Taylor, Reed, Pedersen, and Elder Paul

Elder Jada's photo with President and Sister Dunn


Elder Kewuti, Elder Mthembu, and Elder Carpenter

Elder Taylor and Elder Dalton

Our departing elders. Such fine looking men!
L-R: Elders Otiento, Johnson, Dalton, Kewuti,  Mthembu, Lucking, Taylor, Stephens, Reed, Pedersen, and Carpenter. Elder Perez was not in this photo.

And the whole group including President and Sister Dunn and the APs

Elder Carpenter doing a high kick, Elder Perez, and Elder Lucking

Elder Dalton and Elder Johnson 

Sister Dunn hosts a breakfast for the incoming and outgoing elders on transfer morning. It has become a tradition that is much looked forward to.

Just hanging out waiting for the main transfer meeting to start. Elder Carpenter and Elder Lucking.

Elder Kewuti and Elder Mthembu

Elder Otiento. His voice sounds just like Dansel Washington! Not kidding!

Elder Dalton

Elder Reed and Elder Pedersen. Notice Elder Reed's suit? This suit stays in the mission and has been passed down through the years. The story is that one departing elder is chosen to wear the suit on the last transfer day in the mission. They then write their name on the lining of the jacket. 

Here are some of the names and years. Elder Reed's is at the top. Next transfer I plan on photographing all of the names and dates.
lol! Elders' Reed, Stephens and Pedersen doing the chipmunk face.
Transfer day collage, including our three new missionaries from the MTC

Photos of the transfer meeting when all the elders were sing the mission song. Also our new missionaries and their trainers.
For a musical number, Elder Matos performed a beautiful rendition of the mission song on his guitar.

President and Sister Dunn greeting the departing elders and giving them SAJM lapel pin and a personalized, framed mission bio.

 Today, we received five more new missionaries to our mission! It was another mini transfer day and the day was full of energy and excitement! These first three where planned; Elders Dean, Lybe, Pickup, and two extra where surprises; Elder Rakotoarison, and Elder Rati...can't remember how to spell his name and will edit when I can. We love these kinds of surprises! They along with Elder Paul, Jada, and Woniala, are going to be a great addition to the South Africa Johannesburg mission!

This collage includes our last five incoming missionaries. They all are so happy to be here!

The Bitter of this whole experience is that we will miss our 12 departing elders so much! They have really become an important and solid part of the mission. The sweet...we are so excited for them as they begin the rest of their lives. What an exciting time! We wish them well in all they do. Each will add experience, wisdom, and solid leadership to everything they do in church, school, work and in their families. They will be blessed for giving two years to the Lord!
Also we experience the sweet, with the eight new missionaries joining us. This has been a great transfer week!! 
Mission life is the BEST!!!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for all these great pictures and comments. We love transfer day! Mission life is the best - especially Senior Mission Life.