Love, Marriage and Bride Price

Love, Marriage and Bride Price

As missionaries in the Uganda Kampala Mission, one challenge often faced is unmarried couples who cannot be baptized and join the Church even though they are otherwise worthy and have testimonies of the Gospel. This article will outline the problem and offer solutions to help move our new friends towards marriage, providing for their entry into the Church, and culminating in temple marriage for all eternity. History Bride price has very ancient roots dating back to Old Testament times. And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife. If her father utterly refuse to give her unto him, he shall pay money according to the dowry of virgins. Ex 22:16-17 This is not just an African challenge. It is practiced in Asia, Afghanistan, and some of the Islands as well. Bride price experienced a resurgence in Africa following World War I (1913), as soldiers returned home with their army pay, which was considerable. Upon marrying, some soldiers favored the father of their bride with large gifts to show their appreciation. Word quickly spread that a father with beautiful and well-raised daughters could expect a handsome bride price upon her marriage. This has grown into an entitlement which is unflinching in its demands. Today Bride price today begins at about 3,000,000 ugx, (which might be compared to an American boy paying $100,000 cash for his bride) a figure unreachable by most young Ugandan men. And what is the result? Today’s young adults feel compelled to either pay up the exorbitant bride price, or become immoral...
Something Small

Something Small

Yesterday, ___ asked us to drop by his hut for something small he wanted to share with us before self-reliance class. Things then transpired to prevent us meeting him, including some urgent difficulties with two Elders that demanded attention. This took some time so we didn’t make the appointment. Then today, ____’s father asked us to drop by for something small. We arrived at 5:00 PM to meet both the father and son. After an opening prayer, the son presented us with a hand-written document of something small, to whit: 5 September, 2015 Dear Elder and Sister Taylor RE: Recognition of love to my family On behalf of my family and on my own behalf, I wish to register our overwhelming gratitude for the true and sincere Christian love, care and concern you have exhibited to our son in particular and the family in general especially at this moment of dire need. Sincerely, words are not enough to express our deepest appreciation. It is only God who knows how we feel. However, in recognition of the foregoing, the family has resolved in principle, to offer you a token of 50 acres of virgin land free of charge. Yes, the land is therefore yours. See what you can do with it. This is in line with what our Lord Jesus Christ himself said: There is more happiness in giving than receiving. Acts 20:35 In conclusion, may our Heavenly Father bless you and bless your family back home abundantly. May the Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you always in the sacred name of the Son, Amen. The offer was agreed by...
Escape

Escape

  Someday, I’m Going to Write a Book… How many times have you said that? An amazing thing about being here in Uganda is that we see things and feel things that most people would not believe if they were written in a book. However, RaNae and I have been undergoing such a dramatic change of attitude and focus, that we’d love to share them. For the sake of our family and friends back home, stuck in the jungle of modern day America, we hope to share insights we are learning that may help. Bernell had been to every state in the union, most of them several times. He’d seen every major metropolitan city in his 35 years of business. With his wife RaNae, they had visited most of the significant sights in the U.S. They had toured parts of Europe, Canada and Mexico, and their six children had been along for the ride. Bernell took each child on business trips so they too could see the world. Then, at age 61, Bernell and RaNae left the U.S. to serve 18 months in Uganda as missionaries for their beloved Church. They expected to go help those poor people, but they were introduced to a whole new way of living that re-shaped their view of all things important…forever. They were helped far more than those they served, and they didn’t even know they needed the help. This is their story of escape from the clutches of modern day America to the jungles of East Africa. Join their journey from the Type A business mentality to a far simpler way of...
Being 62

Being 62

Happy Birthday to Me. It’s Tuesday morning, September 8th, and my 62nd birthday. To celebrate, I did 62 push-ups and ran 6.2 miles (10K) before breakfast. Also, I was doused with a few gallons of cold water thanks to Elder Rogers, which is a missionary tradition on birthdays. A daughter sent a very generous email. Later today, I hope to communicate with other family members on the world opposite Uganda. As I said my prayers this morning, I was expressing thanks for many things. It turned into a deep feeling of gratitude for my life situation. To be this age with this level of health and fitness. To be at RaNae’s side and have her for my Queen. To be here in Uganda as a representative of Jesus Christ. To know that I belong to Christ’s true Church on the earth and hold authority to minister. To have an amazing family at home, most of whom are living the Gospel and raising their children in righteousness. To feel the affects of helping strengthen and change lives for the better. To be at peace with my fellow men. To feel clean. I never dreamed that I could be this happy and healthy and engaged in a good cause with such an incredible companion at this age. Truly, I have been richly blessed, and thanks be to God and all who have made this all...
Charities – Read Me First

Charities – Read Me First

Since coming to Africa, we’ve had many family and friends at home ask how they can help these wonderful people. Let us share some counsel first, then invite you to consider your best approach to sharing the blessings you enjoy. Mission Rules Being full time missionaries, we are asked not to assist any group or person financially or materially. This is one of the most difficult parts of our mission since we see so much need. We are also counseled not to facilitate contributions from home unless: It is a one-time need that leads the recipient to self-reliance. It is a worthy cause that can continue unaided once we have moved on. Helping or Hurting? Over the past 20 years, over 1 trillion U.S. dollars have been poured into Africa from government and non-government organizations such as charities and churches. One would think this would result in an empowered nation, but just the opposite is true. Many Africans have become dependent on outside support and Africa has become a welfare state. Some have gained an attitude of entitlement for yet more and more support. We advise using caution, therefore, when you choose to help any individual or institution in Africa. Before you do, ask yourself if the action is a true need and that by its offering you are helping the person or group become more self-reliant. Does Your Dollar Reach the Cause? You are doubtless aware that much of the aid pumped into Africa has been syphoned off by corrupt government officials or individuals whose hands were in the cookie jar before the kids ever got home from school. Corruption is still a very...