Tuesday, November 27, 2012

PEF girls, and Baptisms on the River

November 27, 2012
     Last Saturday we drove to Linden which is about two hours away.  The Summers live there and he is the Branch President.  The traffic was moving slowly and so we decided to stop for gas.  The young lady working there told us that she is a member of the church, but she hadn't been for the last six months.  We told her that the Lord loves her and wants her back.  Out of all the service stations we stopped there.  He is mindful of each and every one:)
     We went to Linden so that we could visit with two of our PEF students who are behind on their payments.  The older sister, Venezia, is married and her husband is out of work because his truck is broken down.  The younger sister, Valicia, lives at home.  A couple months ago their home blew down in a storm.  The branch helped them rebuild their home.  It is on stilts above the ground, and is maybe 20' X 30" Elder Beecher says.  I don't think it is that big and I don't think it has electricity or running water.  The dad and mom make very little and it costs the girls $1,000 or $5.00 U.S. a day to get to school.  I think that they have no concept of their responsibility to paying back their loan.  Their monthly payment is $1,000 Guyanese a month.
     Liz gave me some paper necklaces that sisters in Africa made and they send them to Utah to sell them for $5.00 a piece.  They have an organization called, "Circle of Friends".  I thought that if I could teach them how to make the necklaces, they could pay back their loan.  Then President Mckenzie told me about "buck beads.  They grow on a bush and a stem grows through the middle of the seed.  If you remove the stem, the bead has a hole through the middle of it.  We tried to find out where the bushes grow. We have been talking to people about them and trying to find them for a month.  The Summers found a friend who said that you could find them on the Berbice River, a 60 mile dirt road drive from Linden.  We said, "No Thanks".  I was telling the Beutlers about that when I saw a patch of bushes on the side of the road, and I said, "Hey, are those buck beads?"  They were!  We pass them once or twice a week when we walk to the sea wall.  They are growing in front of an abandoned house.  Another miracle in our lives.  We picked a bunch and took them to Linden on Saturday.  I showed the girls how to make the paper beads, and left them a bunch of supplies.  I hope they will make some necklaces.  The buck bead ones should be easy.  This morning we went to the sea wall to walk and picked some more on our way home.  Then we saw a couple more patches of buck bead bushes on the way home.  Crazy!
     They were having a baptism in Linden for three siblings who live down on the Demarara River.  They have no running water or electricity, but they are so industrious and clean.  The father started bringing his family to church a year ago and they have been attending faithfully.  The parents can't get baptized because they cannot afford to get married.  There are three families who live there close together and have members in their families.  The baptism was sweet.  I got to give the Holy Ghost talk because that speaker came late and wasn't prepared.  Elder Beecher prayed.

The mom scrubbing her clothes on the river.  She scrubs them
with lots of soap and hits them with her paddle.  They would
be spotless if the river water was clean.

Oh, the life on the river!

Sarah's kitchen is spotless and everything is put away.

The house is on stilts, so we met under the house. The
 three young people getting baptized are the Narine children.
Troy, Romona, and Ravina.  Sheldon, on the end just
returned from a mini mission a couple months ago.
He baptized his neighbors.

The young people getting baptized have faithfully attended
Young Men's and Young Women.  They are beautiful and
have gorgeous hair.  Troy Narine, on the right, became one of our closest friends.

Here we are with the kids and the Summers.

They were happy after the baptism.

Sarah's tidy yard, home, and garden.

Some of the cute kids who were there.

Sheldon's dad getting his garden ready to plant. He's building a new chicken pen in the back.
Grandpa Leonard would like the straight furrows.

The Church is true.  Heavenly Father loves all of his children.  We are so blessed to be here in Guyana.  It was a great experience to be at the baptisms.

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