Friday, November 2, 2012

First trip to Berbice, and visiting the Institute Classes

A shrimp farm in the Berbice area.  
November 2, 2012
It's November and still summer in Guyana.  We are still rookies.  We have had many many tender mercies.  Elder Beecher has had at least two deja` vu moments.  One time when we were leaving the mission office which is about a half mile from our place.  As he was driving past some missionaries pulling their suitcases he had the distinct feeling that this was a familiar scene that he had previously experienced.  It was an over powering feeling. It was like he knew he had this experience before perhaps in a dream.  It was verification that this was where we should be.
We are amazed at the knowledge and sacrifices that members have in their lives.  We have worked with the Young Single Adults for over 10 years.  These Guyanese YSA's know just as much about the scriptures and the Gospel of Jesus Christ as their counterparts in Utah.  They do not have the experiences that those in Utah  have.  They don't know some of the how-to's, but they know their scriptures. There are many very bright people in Guyana.  They sometimes race each other to see how fast they can talk back and forth amongst themselves.  They also change their talk so that others cannot understand them sort of like pig latin. One couple had extra "b's" in their words. For example for the command, "Come here." They something like: "Combe herbe" making single syllable words into two syllable words.  They have many interesting ways.
President Cardon and Sister Marcia McKenzie
We also met President McKenzie and his wife Marcia.  He is the Branch President in the Presaud Nagar Branch.  He met his future wife when he was about 35, but he waited for her while she served a mission.  The day that there was a little civil unrest and the road was closed, his wife was stuck on the other side of the situation.  He reminded us about the story of the Savior when the storm was raging he was sleeping.  He was at peace.  He said that it doesn't do any good to be upset and worry.  We should have faith and be at peace.
We met a young member whose name is Adolphus Rogers.  He is working at the hospital as a lab technician.  His parents and siblings live on an island in the Essequibo River which is 23 miles wide at its' mouth.  They have a farm there.  Adolphus really wants to work in the medical field.  He heard about a course to learn how to take blood.  He worked and saved and his mom helped him and he took the course and did well.  He got a job at the hospital.  He is a great example of determination.
A sugar cane field

The rice paddies.

The sugar factory.  The boats are filled with sugar cane,  the tractor pulls them and then they dump the
  sugar cane out on a conveyor belt.
We went out to Berbice last weekend.  It is a couple hour drive.  Last weekend we had some PEF students to help.  We are going out again tomorrow for the Stake Leadership Training.  It is a more rural area.  We saw the sugar cane fields, rice paddies, shrimp farm and the sugar factory.
A funeral procession
A fun hand made picket fence.

We also just happened to see a funeral procession.  We thought it was a parade, but they were carrying the casket.  This just is a very interesting place.  We went for a ride out along a river.  The Treseders, another missionary couple took us.  Crowds of people were out having bar-b-ques along the river.  Cars were parked on both sides of the narrow road.  Plus cars were coming down the road.  I know we have angels on our fenders, like Marilyn Oxborrow said about their mission in Guatemala.  I love the houses on stilts.
We went to church in the Rosignol Branch.  We were so impressed with the large crowd that was there.    The branch president there is really trying to follow the handbook.  I think I heard that there were 88 people there.  They were so happy to see a missionary couple.  The people just love us because we are missionaries.  A boy named Tyrone who is 12 just came and stood by me.  I talked to him for a minute and then he just stayed there.  So I put my arm around his shoulders and gave him a hug.  He put his arms around me and just squeezed me.  It was a tender moment for me.
We went back to Georgetown.  I finally got a picture of one of the horsecarts.  They haul many things; building supplies, car parts, a refrigerator, everything.  They will give the missionaries a ride, too.
We helped with the Primary Sacrament Meeting Program in the Diamond Branch.  We were blessed that day, because the power was on and Elder Beecher could play the electric piano.
The children are so beautiful and lively.  Fifteen boys in this primary and only four girls.
The Diamond Branch Primary

One of the first things we did in Guyana was visit the Institute Classes.  We knew that because our assignment was with the Perpetual Education Fund we would be working with the Young Single Adults.  We were so impressed with the young people.  They knew their scriptures well and had strong testimonies.  The teachers were usually Young Single Adults as well, and they were very knowledgeable and impressive.  
Simeon Lovell, Naomi, Selwyn Lovell, Cameta Williams, Sophie Henry, and Roger Ramnarain       (Institute Group from Prashad Nagar/ Georgetown)
The Diamond Institute Class, Yvonne Beharry, Melissa Gaspar, Marissa, ? , Kurtis Charles, David Singh, Milton Steven, and Sister Beecher
An Investigator, Vanessa, who was the teacher, and Sister Ruby.  Sister Ruby is Vanessa's aunt and guardian.  She was amazing.  She took it upon herself to keep the Church clean.  She said that it was because she had been to the Temple and learned about service.  The LaGrange Church sparkled when she and her friend, Brother Jacobs, were cleaning the Church.  She was also the Relief Society President.

Sophie Singh, Nadie Bash, Christine Jones, Endash Endardeo, Anneza Cuehlo, SherryAnn, and Mandi Harkissoon
Vreed en Hoop Institute Group

We also visited the Demerara Branch where Brother Barrow was the Institute teacher, and Garden Park where Ronetta Mentore was the teacher.

We know that we are watched over every day.  We feel Heavenly Father's love and his guidance and direction.  We thank you all for your prayers.  We feel your love as well.  The Church is true!

1 comment:

  1. BEautiful post! It makes me homesick for those we love in Guyana. Keep up the good work and tell them we love them.