Saturday, April 1, 2017

"where two or three are gathered together in my name...there I will be in the midst of them" D&C 6:32

The love and power of Christ are present no matter where
the faithful members of the Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-Day Saints meet.

Their rooms are versatile...

as chapels for Sacrament meetings...

or classrooms.

One end of a room may be the kitchen and classroom...

and the other end the baptistery.

Most of the buildings are probably not much bigger than
our houses in the USA...

but they allow the members too rejoice
in the glory of the Gospel.

The surroundings may be humble...

but the Spirit

can always be felt inside.

The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the same

no matter where it is taught...

(No standing in the hallways during Sunday
School classes in this building)

or in what ever language.

Glad to be a soldier in His army
and accompanied by my wife in the work.

What a beautiful and humble little church;
and I suspect it was a very sincere place of devotion in its day.

I love these trees.  Perhaps not exactly the Tree of Life...

but I felt like either could somehow be
symbols of Gospel principles.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

You Have to See it to Belize it.

We are soooooo happy to be in Belize

Only 3 days after arriving in Belize, thanks to Elder and Sister Flake,
(who arrived only 2 weeks ago), Julie and I were taken on a
whirlwind tour of the villages we will be visiting regularly
as a part major part of our assignment.  We met most of the local
Seminary and Institute teachers and a couple of the Branch Presidents.

We love the blue skies ...

and all the colors of the countryside.


It feels so happy!

As we traveled it was evident that the look and feel
of the country was definitely different than Peru...

 though the open markets seemed the same.

They have the best produce.

There are several large Mennonite communities throughout the
country that provide produce, dairy products, chickens and beef. 

Similar to Peru, the ma & pa shops are everywhere.

Being our first time out, we passed on the
Cowfoot soup...

and opted for the traditional rice and beans.
Next time we are going to try the beans and rice.

Yes, apparently there is a difference.

The houses are small but practical...

and I think this one even comes with 2 bathrooms.

With the doors open and the draft under the house,
who needs air conditioning?

Everywhere we went we met happy and friendly people.
We love their sense of humor.

Monday, August 10, 2015

When you travel to countries outside of the USA you begin
to realize that life does not have to be over-the-top, structured
or totally organized.  In fact, life as we know it in the USA is
not very prevalent in other countries.
Simple is OK.  Random can de beautiful.
Tradition is preserved.
 Everyone is doing the best they can...and that is good enough.

Neighborhood carts mean personalized service.

This woman and her husband ship these ceramics
to high-end stores in the United States.
No two are exactly alike and they all have imperfections.

Each piece is hand painted.
They are made over molds but often sag or
become a little crooked during the process.
It is all just part of the charm.

Life's accessories are more limited.

Business is wherever you can make it.

Fast Food is not as available through national chains...

but made and sold on the streets.

You can get your chicken, meats ...

and fish fresh daily.

or sit down for a meal

just about anywhere.

Not every family has their own car.

This little girl is doing homework while her parents operate a kiosk.

These kids play together while their parents work at different shops.

Traditional dress is still common, even in the bigger cities.

The old ways are not forgotten.

Cultural and religious events are favorite family activities.

There is time to think

and watch the world go by.

Being by yourself

doesn't mean you are alone.

Because most homes are not big enough
for much more than sleeping...

social "gathering" is done on the street.

 In spite of what we often call "poverty",
it is amazing just how happy they are.

It is about family and friends,
simple pleasures...not stuff.