Sunday, June 14, 2009

School Days

Memphisand Milahn Morgan were baptized Sunday. They are daughters of a Less active Maori Sister. They are now an addition to our ever growing primary. Our Elders are working very hard. We have another less active Sister that they are working with. We will be having a work project at her home this week. She has two daughters and two sons that are unbaptized.
At school one of the children threw up on the floor and panicked the staff. There was a substitute teacher, an aide, and an aide for a special needs child in the room besides Judy and me. The teacher moved all the children away, one aid took the child out, the other ran out speaking over her shoulder, "someone watch Jaese" (the special needs child). Of course the children all wanted to watch him and the first two to approach Jaese were promptly rebuffed by him. He has autism. I just went and sat down near him in a stuffed chair that they have in the class room library where Jaese loves to look at books. I said to him, "what are you reading." He immediately came over and sat on my lap, which he does with his aide all the time, and began to show me his book. You would have thought me a miracle worker. A teacher from the class next door, the school secretery, The sub and aides in the room all thought it wonderful that Jaese had taken to me. They even went and got the school camera and took our picture along with Sister Hoagland using our camera. The school secretery told me the next day that it was a wonderful picture and was going in his student file.

A couple of other funny things happened before our hour of service was over. The teacher next door brought in a bottle of a coagulant and said, "this should congeal everything but I can't do it," and immediately left the room. I didn't think she meant she didn't have time.
After things got back to normal, I went to help the children with a writing project. I was working with a boy named Alex who just had to show me his loose tooth. He could move it to a 45 degree angle so, being the guy that I am, I challenged him to pull it out. Sure enough within 30 seconds it was in his hand. I had him get a paper towel to stop the bleeding and he came back with wad the size of a golf ball in his mouth.

The staff express appreciation for the work we do at the school so I guess we are helping, but we see these children with their parents in the grocery store and other places in town and they greet us, "hello Elder and Sister Hoagland." In the future we hope when they see name tags on missionaries they will have positive thoughts and be receptive to them.
We have been assigned to inspect the missionary flats in our zone. On Friday we drove to Blenheim to inspect the Elder's flat there. It is an eight hour round trip through beautiful mountain valley's on the other side of the south island northeast of Greymouth. I discussed last week how that area has developed a very large vineyard and winery business. The first vineyards begin about 45 minutes west from town. There are some really large vineyards covering the valley floor.
The northeast part of the island has been having some pretty heavy rains. This creek was really flowing and some locals were also taking pictures.
We had to drive through some standing water. The white blotches in the photo is the spray from the wheels as we drove through the water.
Here is some more of the local flooding.

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