Thursday, March 16, 2017

Guests in Kampala

Sunday Pictures

Mercy wanted to get some pictures of us after church so we took a few of them on the veranda.  Faith, Mercy's mother took the photos.  It's funny because when we ask someone to take our picture they don't take one, they take SEVERAL!  Lots of times we'll get our phone back with no less than eight of the same picture.  It's quite funny actually:)  We just have to go in and erase ALL the ones we don't need.

When Mirembe saw that we were taking pictures she had to get in on it.  She had her hair plaited recently and it looks really good!  President Etiang has asked Teddy, one of our converts, to help Mirembe with her English.   She is really coming along.  She is learning sentences and is understanding quite a bit.  She'll be out on her mission before we know it!:)

So this picture tells a story.  About 6 weeks ago, Joel, one of our investigators asked if he could carve something for us.  We have had a few people make some of their artwork for us.....carvings, a painting, take home with us.  Elder Phelps thought maybe Joel could make us a small chimpanzee.  Joel asked for a picture to go off of and we found one on the internet.  Well, long story short....after church Joel walked up to us after church with this monster!  I caught Rick's eye and he winked and I smiled.  Oh boy!  I thought, "There is NO WAY are we getting that thing home!"    I think we'll find a nice place for it right here in Mbale:)

After church we got Mercy and Francis and started our long drive to Kampala.  This week was their turn to come to the big city to get their doctor's visits in.  We thought they might need to stay overnight so they came prepared for that.  The big surprise was that they weren't going to be able to get finished until Thursday!  I was totally fine with that.  I love having our friends around! 

On Monday night Rick made up some popcorn and we all sat around my laptop watching "The Other Side of Heaven".  They loved it.  I loved watching Frances' silly little grin as he watched the show.  He said afterwards.  "That show was powerful! I'm going to think about it
 when I am on my mission and it will bring me strength." 

On the trip to Kampala Mercy mentioned, " It is difficult when the missionaries that the Branch comes to know and love leave us."  She continued.... "Especially when we sing God Be with You 'Til We Meet Again" at church.  Everyone cries."  

In the movie when Elder Groberg leaves the island the people sing that song to him.  I thought about what Mercy had said the day before and I cried like a baby through that whole part.  That's going to be us in a few weeks.  We will be leaving and very likely not see many of our Mbale friends again.  
That's not easy to think about,

In the afternoon on Tuesday and Wednesday Mercy and Francis were able to spend time with the missionaries.  Mercy went with Sisters Kunene and Maqnele.  Francis went with the AP's, Elders Malaza and Grant.
They each were able to do some visiting and teaching.

Wednesday we wanted to celebrate Mercy's birthday which actually is on March 17th.  St. Patrick's Day!  We celebrated two days early.

We invited the Elders and Sisters to join us for the buffet at Protea hotel. We had a nice time eating and visiting and getting to know one another better.  Poor Mercy had two fillings done on her molars earlier in the day and so she was in a bit of pain.  She sure did enjoy the chocolate brownies though:)

It's interesting the things we first worlders take for granted.... simple things like knowing how to flush a toilet or to take a shower with running water.   Simple things that we don't think anything of is new to people who live in third world countries.  When we were at dinner Mercy needed some sugar for her juice because it was not sweetened.  After the waitress brought her a small package of sugar Mercy pointed to her glass and said to Elder Phelps "How do I get this in there?"  Elder Phelps had to explain that the sugar was inside the packet and she just needed to open it up and poor it into her drink:)  

Mercy is a smart person and is even college educated.  She just had never seen a small packet of sugar before.  For the Ugandans, sugar is a luxury indeed and if it is purchased it is done at the market where it comes in bulk and you buy it by the kilogram.  Different cultures.  Different worlds.  

                                              We had a nice evening!

Mercy and Francis got finished up with their appointments this morning so this afternoon they are on their way back to Mbale.  We sure enjoyed our time with them!

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