Tuesday, October 25, 2016

We are almost through the rainy season here in Sierra Leone.  We occasionally have a heavy rain but mostly during the night.  During August, September, and October they were during the day and night.

Rainy day in Bo.  Video did not work

Last week as we were coming back to our apartment, a heavy rain started.  By the time we got to our compound, the rain was so heavy that the guards could not hear us at the gate because of the noise the rain makes on the guard house tin roof.  We also did not want to get out of the truck and didn't want the guard to have to open the gate in the rain..  We waited for about 15 minutes for the rain to slow down.  Since we had nothing better to do, we took this video of the rain on the truck window.  You can see the water coming down in a solid sheet on the windshield.

Sister Sherwood and JJ
This is the nephew of Sister Sherwood's cooking teacher, Jestina.  Notice how he is carefully examining her hand.  Little ones are so intrigued by a white man's hand.  They sometimes try and wipe your hand to take off the chalk and reveal the black underneath.  They are so precious.  The smaller ones are sometimes afraid of us and won't leave their mother's side.  JJ made himself right at home in our house during the cooking lesson.  He was happy to color with markers while we cooked.  However later I found that he had colored the back of my skirt as well.

The other night we were surprised by the sound of hymns outside our compound.  It was an apartment full of Elders(6 in all) coming to get some supplies for their apartment.  What a delight to hear their spirit and their harmony.  When President and Sister Clawson came a few days later, we called the same elders and had them come and sing again.  They live about 1/4 mile down the street from us.  They came over and started singing for President Clawson and we decided to record it.

Elder and Sister Heckle return to Bo.

Elder and Sister Heckle, the area literacy specialists from Ghana, were with us for another week.  We are in the process of starting 2 more branches doing the Gospel Literacy training here in Bo.  We now have 4 branches going.

We have been thrilled with the progress of the Gospel Literacy program.  The definition of Gospel Literacy is not the same as normal adult literacy.  It is "the ability to use the Gift of the Holy Ghost to READ, WRITE, UNDERSTAND, TESTIFY and LIVE the Words of God."

Many members have felt on the outskirts of the gospel ever since they were baptized because they could not read the scriptures.  In church they get little out of the lessons.  Many come to Sacrament Meeting and then go home.  They feel the gospel is only for those who have been to school.  In just a few weeks of the Gospel Literacy Sunday School class they are beginning to read scripture and feel the spirit testify to them of the truth of what they are reading.  They are coming each week and staying.   They are now getting more out of the other lessons in church as well.  We are so grateful to the Heckles who have been giving decades of their lives to developing these inspired program training materials.  This program is putting the words of the Savior in the hands of the common people.  It is wonderful.

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