Friday, April 4, 2014

Wednesday, March 19th

I was feeling a little better when I got up this morning so I got dressed and went into work. I did alright, I was just really weak.

I spent the morning updating the spreadsheet for Cyclone Ian and then working on the Niua project. I entered the information on CHAS and saved it, but once I checked out and then went back, IT WAS GONE. I didn’t feel well enough to play that game today, so I just left it for tomorrow.

We received an email today that there has been a big shake-up in the leadership in the Area Office. One of the managers there was called as a mission president. The Area Presidency decided to move people around, rather than just replace him. We lost Steve Stebbings, our Area Welfare Manager. We are sick about that. We know him, he knows us and he trusts us. He is crucial in approving our projects. Now we will have to develop that level of trust all over again and we don’t really have time to do that. Thank heaven Elder Reynolds is still in place. Hopefully he can help us get these last projects approved.

We also got another email about our travel arrangements to go home. The mission says it is not their responsibility, we are under the Area Office. The Area Office says that we are missionaries and that the mission should make the travel plans. Once again, no one knows what to do with us. We are starting to feel unappreciated. But not by Elder Reynolds. He stepped right in and emailed SLC to Church Travel. Hopefully someone will want to help us get home.

Morgan sent us an email and we had a little time so we called her on facetime. So fun to see and talk to our grandchildren!! Sure wish Zach and Amberly would turn their own phones on! We can never reach them.

We had a phone conference with New Zealand about Ha’api this afternoon. Things are starting to turn around up there. There has been a lot of rain and the crops that everyone thought were dead, are starting to grow and flourish. In 2-3 months they should have plenty of root crops to keep the people up there fed. That was really good news. The bad news is that it looks like a it will be a long wait for the people to get their houses rebuilt. Tonga is getting lots of donations from other countries and the World Bank has agreed to loan them 10 million dollars, but they won’t open that money up until Tonga comes up with 50%. Tonga is trying to get the Church, Red Cross, the Catholic church and other churches to commit money so they can do that. Everyone is waiting to see how much we are going to commit. We are not going to give money, we will go in and build houses. They were going to build houses for members and non-members and let the government build houses for our members and non-members, but now it looks like we will just build for our members. That decision will be made by the Presiding Bishopric and the First Presidency at conference time. Elder Tuku’afu will be in SLC to visit with them if needed.

John Walters died today. He was our home teacher when we were in the Liahona 1st ward. He was 85 years old and he had had a bad stroke a couple of weeks ago. It was a blessing for him but it will be hard for his sweet wife to get by now that he is gone. He was from Australia and I’m sure he must have had a good pension. She has children in New Zealand and in America. It will be interesting to see what she does now.

Every time we turn on the computer we see more bad news about Ukraine. It breaks my heart to think of the people that we love there and what they must be going through. We feel so bad for them. They are continually in our prayers. It will take a miracle to straighten out that mess. We are praying that it doesn’t end up in a war.