Monday, October 6, 2014

October 5, 2014 General Conference

Today marked the end of a great General Conference.  We were able to watch conference at the Stake Center with the young missionaries.  It is so wonderful to have the ability to watch conference live and this time, to hear the speakers in their native languages.  Communication is not such a barrier any longer.  It is really different to have the priesthood session at 8:00 p.m., though!

I will have to read and reread the conference talks when they come out, but Elder Bednar's talk is one that really made an impact.  He articulated the feelings that I have about sharing the gospel in a way that I have never been able to do.  As soon as I can, I will attach his talk to this blog so that my family and friends who do not belong to the Church can understand why we have such a passion for missionary work.

Some of our Brazilian missionaries assisted for the national voting that took place at the Consulate Sunday.  They were not allowed to wear their name tags, but hopefully it was a great way to let the Brazilians here in Atlanta that there is something special about them.

On Friday, we attended a training for the missionary leadership.  My favorite session was one held for the sisters only.  Sister Chapman (the Sister in pink) had us divide a paper into four sections.  Along the left side, we wrote "Dominant", along the right side "Easy going", along the top "Formal" and along the bottom "Informal".  She then had all of us determine which quadrant fit our personality.  We then got into a group with those who were in the same quadrant and answered questions about our strengths, weaknesses, and pet peeves.  We then talked about the challenges in working with people who were in the opposite corner from ours.  My quadrant was labeled "controller", the upper right corner "analytical", the bottom right corner "supporter" and the bottom left "promoter".  The supported group indicated that they can't make decisions and tend to sometimes be "too chill" resulting in them going along with the wrong things.  We laughed.  When asked how they would deal with working with someone in the opposite quadrant, the analytical group got really quiet.  Someone from the Controller group piped up "They have to think about it."  When asked how to deal with a companion who is in the supporter group, one of the Controller group said "I will just have to schedule fun."  We all laughed and enjoyed the task. Love these missionaries.

Before we left on our mission, two great friends sent us with some money to use on the mission.  For the past three months, I have considered various options to use the money.  On Saturday, we gathered props to be able to create Bethlehem for the Branch at Christmas.  The money for that was from those treasured donations.

We had a neat experience at the Emory Eye Center this week.  Elder Dixon has to have Botox around his eyes every three to four months.  We struggled to find the place and were about 10 minutes late, but they still took him in.  After the Doctor completed the examination, we were taken to a small office where a young woman would complete the paperwork.  She had a beautiful African name, and told us that her mother was a pastor and she came from a long line of pastors.  We realized that her family was very special to her as she spoke fondly of her grandmother.  I gave her one of the cards with family history information on it.  She told us that was amazing to  her because her little 5 year old had been asking how his great-great-great-great grandfather died.  In addition to that, the function she was performing was not her regular job and she would not usually have been in that office.  We all recognized God's hand in our meeting.  I hope she is able to find those answers!

Sravanthi and Bala invited us to a special celebration/blessing for Varnika.  Before she would attend school, they wanted to have the blessing.  It was very nice of them to include us.  Varnika looked darling and Sravanthi looked very nice.

Bala explained that the little dot in the middle of their forehead is to show that they believe in reincarnation.

"Hot-Lanta" is no longer hot.  The temperature is dropping and the leaves are changing color.

As we travel along "The 400" we pass these buildings a lot.  My pictures did not turn out, so these are from the internet.  The buildings look like giant chess pieces and are referred to by locals as "The King and Queen".  They are a great landmark.

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