Sunday, June 22, 2014

Week 68

    I stated last week no coach had beaten Saban 2 years in a row....I stand corrected about the Great Sabanator and his record against repeat customers.  Since 2008 there is oone coach who has beat him twice in a row....Les Miles...I read online this week.  I still like our odds against the "Barners"(Auburn)

    June 21 Pam organized a General Women's Conference for all sisters  

      Yesterday was our Women’s Broadcast Conference, ages 8 to 108.  In conjunction with it, I had 12 cooking classes throughout the week in my home.  The sisters have been asking for over a year to learn how to bake but I had refused because they didn’t have ovens to bake in.  However, about seven months ago I started working with an engineer in our branch and later with our Branch president/medical student to see about creating outdoor ovens.  They completed a metal one for our Bardege branch and have almost completed a large brick one for the Gulu branch.  With that in place it was time to start teaching them.  Interestingly, over forty signed up for a class, but only 16 came.  While those who came enjoyed the class they said, "Sister Moore, what will we do; we have no ovens".  The “unveiling” of the ovens was to be the surprise after attending the conference broadcast.  

      The next problem is they have nothing to bake in and there isn't any place here that sells bread pans, cookie sheets or cake pans of ANY  kind.  I did find a large muffin pan in Gulu for 193,000 shillings (almost $75) but that is all I have seen.  When we go to Kampala later this week, I can pick up a few things there for each branch.  Of course then there is the problem of buying the ingredients to make the cakes or bread.  Most will not be able to afford even ingredients for baking bread (they eat posho - like a very stiff cornmeal mush -- instead of bread), but at least on occasion they can bake at the church with money coming out of the branch budget. 

      Finally, they don't have any recipes.  Before and during the cooking classes I told them at least half a dozen times that I would prepare for them a cookbook of all the things we had baked during the week.  They didn't understand at all.  Then it dawned on me; they have no books except the scriptures in their homes so they don't know what a cookbook is. When I explained more fully, they were thrilled that they would get a little book with recipes.  

      In spite of the low turnout, there was a wonderful spirit at our Women’s Conference.  One of our new converts, a widow with six children still at home was beaming from the messages of hope and comfort that penetrated her heart.  She brought two of her daughters who also enjoyed the conference.

      Immediately after the broadcast, we went into the Relief Society room where we cut bars of soap to put in the hygiene kits that will be going to the Ugandan refugee camps for the South Sudanese that are living a few hours north of us.  Even the young girls were able to help with this service project.

      I am pleased to finally have a count of the kits that so many have worked on.  After weeks of sorting, we have 2,905 partial or complete kits on hand and I received an email from a “stranger” that she is bringing another 100 when she arrives in Uganda on Monday!  That has been one of the amazing things about this mission – the networking between service organizations.  We cross paths with those who have hearts of service nearly daily and become friends as we work to relieve some of the suffering of these people. 

      There is still lots to do before the actual hygiene kit handoff but it is slowly coming together.    We estimate there have been over 4,500 hours of volunteer service given by girls, Young Women and other adults for this one cause, not to mention the tens of thousands of dollars donated for fabric, Ziplocs, soap, panties, etc.  Just this week we received over $1,200 for 1,300 more pairs of underwear we needed.  Thank you to everyone on the states’ side who has taken interest or helped with this Days for Girls project.  We truly are seeing miracles taking place.  

      Making the cookbook was a bigger challenge than I anticipated.  All my recipes use traditional measuring cups and measuring spoons.  Everything had to be converted over to what they have in their home.  Names of ingredients also had to be changed somewhat to make sure they understand.  For example no one knew what baking soda is, call it bicarbonate of soda and they know.  More detail on steps in cooking or baking that we take for granted needed to be included. The booklet only contains about 17 recipes but its a start for them and more can be added.  

      A disappointing part of the conference for me was those who showed up two hours late just for refreshments and others who were hoarding the food.  I've seen it many times before, but thought I had it "under control" for this meeting.  Not so.  Some of the sisters had plates of food piled four inches high (not exaggerating).  I prayed for understanding why they would be so greedy since these poor are not starving poor.  The Lord answered my request by reminding me of the "Muzungu's" gluttonous eating habits.  Thanksgiving? other holiday parties? What's a favorite place your average American likes to go eat?  (all-you-can-eat buffet)  What do those that cruise generally talk about as a highlight of the cruise and how much weight do they gain in a week's travel?  What is the number one activity for a night out?  Americans may be more discreet about our food hoarding and appetites, but we are also fixated on food - and a lot of it. I need to apply personal discipline from what I observed in this experience.

       sisters making chicken salad
       Bardege sisters learning to grate carrots for their cake 

    The Primary girls helped pack the soap in boxes after it was cut and wrapped.  This week we prepared 2,000 bars for the kits.  We have at least another 1,000 to go.  

    The Womens Conference attendees working on the soap.

    Priesthood brethren Lowaka Steve, Ocello John and Odong Martin prepared to help serve the sisters from the foods made in their cooking classes. 

    Found a new rock quarry.  The outcropping is 15 feet or so below the soil.  To make the large rock weak, the dirt is dug away from the rock and a fire is built on top of the rock, making the rock hot e brittle.

    Large slabs are lifted out.
    And then pounded by hammer to various size fragments.  EVERYTHING is done by hand...even the heavy lifting.

    Our African missionaries are not held to the same hair grooming standards as those from the West.  This is Elder Lambola on the right.
    Actually, it's a wig.  
    A Mormon Helping Hand's project where the young single adults with just about 12 hours notice joined other groups in a city-wide clean up.
    President Phillip of Bardege Branch.  He is our med student many of you have helped keep in school.  We are running up against another tuition deadline.  Somehow things will come together.

    To quote Hans Christian Andersen ...the emperor has no clothes.  Think we've told you before that the Acholi tribe believe that if they put diapers on little boys it will "spoil their manhood"...meaning make them sterile.  There are a lot of naked boys running around in the neighborhoods.
    This dear lady stopped to ask for some sweets after she saw me hand some to a couple of little boys.  I then asked to take her picture. She then asked for money.

    I can't get the sound to run on my end.  Neither can I delete this video.  Just as well.  If you can read lips and notice the actions of their right arms you'll know what they are saying..."Roll Tide"

    • Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles described the relationship between materialism and spirituality:
      “Materialism, which gives priority to material needs and objects, is obviously the opposite of spirituality. The Savior taught that we should not lay up ‘treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal’ (Matthew 6:19). We should lay up treasures in heaven: ‘For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also’ (Matthew 6:21). …
      “There is nothing inherently evil about money. The Good Samaritan used the same coinage to serve his fellowman that Judas used to betray the Master. It is ‘the love of money [which] is the root of all evil’ (1 Timothy 6:10; italics added). The critical difference is the degree of spirituality we exercise in viewing, evaluating, and managing the things of this world and our experiences in it.
      “If allowed to become an object of worship or priority, money can make us selfish and prideful, ‘puffed up in the vain things of the world’ (Alma 5:37). In contrast, if used for fulfilling our legal obligations and for paying our tithes and offerings, money can demonstrate integrity and develop unselfishness. The spiritually enlightened use of property can help prepare us for the higher law of a celestial glory” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1985, 78; or Ensign, Nov. 1985, 62–63).

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