The Open Market

The Open Market

We went shopping in an open-air market today. While the environment was very foreign to us, we loved it. There are so many fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds and grains available here that I wonder if maybe this is where Eden was and not the U.S. The size and scope of all that was offered was overwhelming. Uganda is sometimes called the crucible of contradiction, and this photo of RaNae in the open market is a perfect example of that term.  Tonight we had fresh tomato sandwiches and fresh mango. Delicious! I can’t say much for the open-air meat market, however. All the meat was fresh-killed and hanging from poles. The pile of tripe (cow guts) was anything but appetizing. There were live chickens to buy, but we don’t eat meat so the temptation soon passed. The white vans you see here are part of their mass transit system (like city busses in the U.S.). The motorcycle you see to the left is a bodaboda, which is their taxi system. We learned today that there are an estimated 300,000 such motorcycles in Kampala alone. The traffic is absolutely unbelievable, as evidenced by the smashed up van in this picture. One young man was traveling to the mission home to leave for his mission. He was in a van like this one when it rolled in traffic and two people were killed. The company was trying to take him to the hospital to be checked out, but he said he was on his way to serve the Lord and couldn’t be late. He caught another van and made it to the mission home in time to...

Arrival in Uganda

Had dinner with Pres & Sis Chatfield last night. I learned so much about how to grow the Church on a firm foundation. I will make an analogy regarding fire to describe it.  President: I thought about your vision of growth in Africa most of the night. I am converted. When we began our dinner together, I was in favor of that little branch being established out in the bush.  But as you spoke, I began to understand how the Church must grow if it is to be established, which I do not doubt it will. I made these rough notes in my journal this morning. I may want to put together a video presentation to tell this story for my own use, and am glad to help you spread this message in any way you would like.  Here are my notes and another thanks to you: Igniting Africa Africa is ready to ignite, although it is dampened by traditions that hamper success.The log represents Africa.The matches represent the Mazungos (white people) A match can only stay lit for a short time, representing the mission of each missionary. Many matches will not ignite the log. No matter how many missionaries you have, they are only the source of ignition and not the lasting fuel. Dry grass represents the poor class of people in Africa. They are very receptive to the Gospel flame, but their testimonies do not last long since they cannot read scriptures and other uplifting materials in their own language. They can burst into flame from missionary work, but will not likely last if they don’t have...
Into Africa

Into Africa

We arrived in Uganda late last night, January 27, 2015. We were met by President and Sister Chatfield (on the left), Elder & Sister Wallace (right), and our driver Godfrey. The drive from the airport was memorable because they use English-style cars and drive on the left side of the road. The view is from our patio balcony. Security is a very big deal because there is a lot of robbing. Our apartment has a guard 24/7. It is protected by a high wall with razor wire across the top. We must honk or knock to gain entrance. The barred windows and many locks let you know not to leave things open or unsecured, but the people we met on our morning walk (worth a whole entry of its own) were very friendly. We were told that our apartment is one of the nicest places in Kampala. Given the huts and shanties we saw on our morning walk support that claim. We are comfortable and very well cared-for. There is no air conditioning, but this place is most comfortable. RaNae and I have our own desk area to work. Our bedroom features a king size bed. Notice the mosquito netting for draping the bed. If we keep the doors and windows secure, we can sleep without the net and a fan keeps the air moving. From our balcony, we can lean over and pick this mango when it ripens. There are tons of fruits, grains, seeds and vegetables here. The stores are handy and there is plenty of quality food if you wash it carefully. Since we’re vegan, we don’t need to worry about...

Friday Jan 23rd

Today we got our travel plans changed. Rather than being in transit over 35 hours, it has been cut way down. We were going to go from SLC to Dallas, to London, then Johanesburg, and finally Kampala. That was about a bazillion air miles with crazy-long layovers like 12 hours.  Our new plan takes us to Seattle, Amsterdam and Kampala. Our longest flight is 10 hours. Sweet!  We leave Monday at 10:40.  Just thought you’d like to know. Had a great experience today at breakfast with Scott Seamons, the executive secretary of the MTC. He is also executive secretary to Elder Clayton of the Seventy. We shared some very personal thoughts together and we three were all tearful sitting at breakfast. As we left him, I told Mom “It doesn’t matter whether a person is a non-member, an inactive member, or a general authority. We can help lift anyone and we can be taught by anyone”. That was pretty profound to me because it erases the lines we tend to draw. It doesn’t matter who a person is because we are to invite all to come unto Christ. If that person already knows Christ, we can still lift them.  Our new friend at breakfast told us he needed to be lifted today and had prayed to meet someone that could help him. I would never have guessed that a man like that would need a lift, let alone that we could be the lifters. It’s a pretty cool thought. So erase those feelings that you can’t hang out with someone if they are not in your ward or stake,...

Thursday Jan 22nd

Today is Thursday and we just returned from doing Sealings with our district. It was a very good experience and we have grown to love one another already. Tomorrow is our last day of training. One of our district couples leaves on Saturday, we leave on Monday, and the last couple leaves on Wednesday.  Mom and I will spend the weekend doing laundry and such (Saturday is P-day) and enjoying church here on Sunday.  We meet at the travel office to depart on at 8:30 Monday morning.  Our flight from SLC leaves at 2:22 in the afternoon. Our itinerary shows that we will not be able to lay down and rest for about 36 hours. Yippee! This has been a great experience. We have practiced and testified and wept. Mom and I laugh at how many times we practice teaching each other and we suddenly both burst into tears. We’ve discovered that the Spirit doesn’t care whether you are role playing or actually teaching a real investigator – He’ll come either way because you are teaching truth.  Today we taught a woman in the TRC (training resource center) where members come prepared to play the part of non-members. At the end of the lesson, we learned that Linda and Elmon Clemet really are not members. We taught her and had a great experience. It wasn’t until we ended our lesson that we discovered she is actually investigating the Church. Fortunately, we had done a good job and we felt a great bond with her. I gave her a card and asked her to email us so we can share...