Monday, February 25, 2008

Sunday, District Conference

District conference
Next day was Sunday and District Conference for the church. We knew there would be a crowd. The chapel is small so a bowery was set up outside and televisions set up so people could see the speakers. A large section in the chapel was reserved for dignitaries as the church expected that the police, government officials and the water committee would come. The Territorial Administrator came and sat on the front row with his wife. The meeting was wonderful, spiritual and an experience. There was a youth choir and when they broke into the Hallelujah Chorus it brought tears to our eyes.
Farrell was asked to speak in the conference about the water project. He explained to everyone where the humanitarian funds come from, that they are the widow’s mite. The gift of water is a gift from a loving heavenly Father who wants his children to be happy. We are all God’s children and we should take care of each other. He explained that the water project is not the church’s project but the communities project and would require the community to work to make it successful. The water would not belong to the church, it would belong to the community and they would have to care for it and use it wisely.

After the church meeting was finished. Pres. Benini invited the dignitaries to speak to the congregation. The Territorial Administrator said they had been hoping for this blessing for a long time and he wanted to thank the church for accepting the project and making it happen. This would help the community become stronger.
The police came to conference and he did bring his gun (he was acting as the body guard for the Terretorial Director.
The dignitaries adjourned to the other building for a reception where they were fed by the Relief Society. Protocal must be preserved a and food is a big part. First you do business and then you share some food; a pretty standard way of conducting business here.

That night we took a walk around Luputa. We had an entourage of children who would not allow us to take pictures without their jumping in front of the camera so we had to put the camera away and sneak it out and snap a quick picture.
We met a girl with a chicken basket
a man getting a haircut,
a family milling cassava flour and corn meal,
a boy playing with a homemade soccer ball,
several women coming back from the market.
We found a cattle truck sitting on the side of the road and before we knew it all the children had climbed on board.
We took a final picture of our entourage in front of the mission

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