|So many wonderful men & women leading the church here on Kiritimati Island|
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Saturday, October 6, 2012
Friday, October 5, 2012
Relief Society Social
A while back the Relief Society in Kiritimati Branch had a special opportunity to learn how to make virgin coconut oil from an amazing woman visiting here from Tarawa. There was a really good attendance out back in the mwaneaba (big hut). We had lots of coconuts gathered into a pile ready to be cracked open (that is an art by the way). There were several women set to work grinding the pulp into the big clean bowls. The next step is to place the shredded pulp into the center of clean dry cloths, wrap them tight and start squeezing the oil into another big clean bowl. I'll tell you what, that squeezing is a hard job! Next they heat the oil over a slow heat, stirring the whole time. I left about that time so the secret of making virgin coconut oil is still just that.....a secret!!! Had you going there, didn't I!! It is really great stuff. It is used to soften skin, and condition their beautiful long hair. Personally I think you could put a sparkling shine on shoes, fancy up the tires on your new car, polish the surface of your desk, make your pots shine, cure chapped lips, soften the bottom of your callused feet, your pointed elbows, the and those rough knees. No kidding, it is really great stuff and it smells so good.
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Monday, September 3, 2012
In Banana the members don't have a meeting house yet. We rent space at the local school. Included in the "we don't have yet" is a baptism font so we use the Pacific Ocean. On this particular Saturday afternoon we are gathered near the area where we generally go to perform this Holy ordinance. These fellows had to turn around to go down the slight ridge to get into the water (which isn't as rough as it looks from this view). This was a very special day for this young man who wants to serve a mission.
Sunday, September 2, 2012
New Year's Eve 2011
The day started with the baptism of single young man in his mid 20s. It was due to start at 9 AM but didn't start until after 10 am but that was alright because we finished up in time for the branch party that was to start about 11 AM but actually started closer to 12:30. The Relief Society sisters cooked the food that the branch provided with the balance of the ward budget. While we all waited for the food to be brought up from the back of the lot where the sisters had been cooking it, the president led the youth and children in games. They played 'Simon says' which was fun for all of them and 'musical chairs' (which was so hilarious watching the older teenagers loose to the little kids).
Once the food was brought up the older folks (we were well qualified) were invited to dish up our food so we could eat as the different groups performed their dances. You just couldn't believe what good cooks we have in the branch. That went on for hours with everyone moving to and from the food ladened tables. About 4:00 the groups had finished so the whole congregation was invited to dance to the loud, thumping music. So fun to watch, especially when a sweet young teenager took your father out onto the dance floor. HE WENT! HE DANCED!!
After relaxing for awhile we went with our two missionaries on this New Year's Eve to dinner at Rodney's house. He is an active member of the church who is the father of 4 little children. He offered to turn his television on for Dad. He has ESPN and was very pleased to be able to offer sports to him. Your father graciously turned him down. His sweet wife and several of their children brought large platters of food into their living room, and set them down on the floor. I have heard about this since before we ever came here but it was still strange. We sat in a circle around the food, where Rodney blessed it. As is the custom, the guests (us 4) and the men (Rodney) were the first to be fed. Before we started filling our plates, Elder Turner asked if the rest of the family could please join us so we could all eat together. They did come in but didn't actually start eating until we had a good start. There was so much food. Potato salad, big bowl of rice, hot dogs, fresh tuna fish (so delicious), bone fish, chicken (bbq), fresh tomatoes, cabbage salad, 3 huge shrimp, soda pop and cool-aid. It was all sooooo good. Dad & I tried to stay sitting on the floor but we had to sit back up on the sofa (to the delight of the whole group).
HAPPY NEW YEARS.........
This is a row of well built homes that sit along a back road just off the beach pretty close to where we live. Just to the right of this picture is a small rise that drops down to the Pacific Ocean beach. We have friends/members who live here. I asked a lady if the noise from the big ships disturbs them. She gave me a wondering look (I guess we get use to the noises we hear all the time) then explained that they like the big ships that drop anchor off shore because they light up the night. It is really amazing to see the big giant ships at night. It is like seeing a big 10 story building fully lit from top to bottom out in the middle of the blackness just beyond the 'hill'. It is not unusual to see at least one or two of them resting peacefully out there. Most of the local homes don't have more than one or two lights, sometimes without any additional electricity.
One afternoon I went over to the Mia Maid leader's home to give her a copy of the Young Women's Conference CD that was sent to us from the mission home. We talked for a while but when it started getting late I drove the van on the little dirt 'road' along the beach. The sky began changing as the sun lowered into the ocean. I knew the camera was with me so I pulled over to see what I might capture through the lens. I have only slightly lightened this photo so the body of the ship would show.
Pres. Dee Mabey and I got to Kiritimati Island mid December with hopes of putting together a blog that we could update at least on a monthly basis. However that has not worked. We finally have the internet to the point where we can get on once in a while. Pictures seem to be a problem but perhaps I can get someone back to add a few photos. It is now September 2nd, Sunday evening. I will go back to try include important or just fun information.
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
I am trying to put together a little history of our time so far here on Kiritimati Island. It is actually July 26th and we first got here on Dec 15th. but the internet didn't work so we couldn't do much with this blog. Hope you enjoy our journey.
The houses on the island are very small. Made out of about anything they can get their hands on: tin, scraps of wood, branches off coconut trees, thached roofs, cinder blocks, sticks, card board, cloth to cover windows. Many don't have floors, most are very short, some on sticks to elevate them off the ground. They weave mats to sleep on, sit on, use as coverings, for privacy.
At the gatherings you see some of the people, all ages, using their fingers to eat with, sometimes out of a single central bowl. Many of the little children run around without any clothes on. The stores sale diapers one at a time because the little children pretty much go around with out bottoms.The people are starting to gather here for this special night. They will not be sleeping in the empty cultural hall (like last week) but out in the huts in the back. I wish you could see these places. The main one is pretty big and has a light at the top peek. They are carrying in their mats. The mats are works of art, they are so beautiful. These wonderful people are so happy, they are well dressed, and very excited to be together. You should hear them sing. They are so amazing. I love being here.