We are enjoying retirement and loving the time it affords us to enjoy family and do a little traveling. This is mostly a record of the trips that we have been lucky enough to experience and a little family thrown in.
We gave our talks in Sacrament Meeting today. That makes it feel more real. I was asked to talk about how I have prepared for this mission. Wayne was asked to tell a little about where we are going and to talk about the sacrifices of serving a mission. Wayne had talked to a CES person in Salt Lake on Friday who had indicated that we were probably going to be assigned to Palau and would be training seminary teachers and teaching an Institute class. He included all of this information in his talk and then this afternoon the Mission President in Guam called and talked to him. We are back on Guam now and our assignment is going to be working in the mission office. I was a little disappointed that we would not be going to Palau. Wayne had made it sound so good. But we are now going to have the opportunity to visit all the islands in the mission. There are quite a few so we are going to get a lot more exposure to Micronesia this way. It is all sounding so exciting and we are really ready to go.
Wayne finally connected with the sister in Salt Lake and it seems we are now going to do a CES mission in Guam. A little change in our focus but we are okay with it. We have to wait for the official call and materials to arrive in the mail so we do not really know what we are to do or exactly where we will be living. We assume we will be working with the Seminary and Institute programs. At least we know what kind of clothes to pack now.
Well it is Monday - the day the sister in Salt Lake said to call back to get our new mission asssignment. Wayne called this morning and SURPRISE! It is Matin Luther King Day and the Church Headquarters are closed. Maybe tomorrow.
We received an email from the Mission President in India several days ago. Basically he was telling us that we would not be coming to India and said we had two options. We could wait until we get to the MTC and see what happens then or we could call Salt Lake and ask for a reassignment. We opted for the second option and Wayne called Salt Lake on Wednesday. The sister that he spoke to confirmed that we would not be going to India and said they were working on our assignment. She told Wayne that we could go to Russia but we would have to wait another 5 months because of the Visa requirements. Wayne told her that we have to report to the MTC on Feb. 1st no matter what because we have to be out of our house and we sold our car so we can't go anywhere in the US. She told him that a mission president had called, desperate for a couple to come to his mission but she had to check on the Visa requirements. She would call back that afternoon. Well, we did not hear from her that day but she called the next and said she had worked something out but it had to be approved by one of the apostles first so Wayne was to call her this afternoon. When Wayne called today, she said the paper work had not come back to her office yet and she was leaving early today. We are back to waiting for the mission call! Hopefully, we will find out on Monday. Another long weekend coming up!
Granny's funeral was yesterday and it was wonderful. We have to thank Brian for being a good sport and giving the eulogy. We know it wasn't easy but he did a good job. A big thank you also goes to Larry Ashcraft for giving the gospel message. He did a beautiful job as did Bishop Kirk. We also had a musical number by all of the grandchildren who were there. Not only did it sound good but they looked good too. I know Granny would be proud of them. It was so nice to have about 90% of the family here and we enjoyed being able to visit and reconnect. We had not expected Jonathan and Margo to come but they found a fantastic deal on airfare and decided to bring the whole family. They get to stay a whole week and so the cousins are having a blast playing together and getting to know each other again. It is too bad they only get to see each other about once a year.
We have received a little more info on the Visa situation and we are sure that we are not going to India. We will be reassigned but we do not know when or where. The waiting and anticipation starts all over again. We will keep posting as we get more information.
Wayne's mother, Jacqueline Clarke, passed away yesterday. She has been in a very sad condition for quite some time and it was a major worry of ours that she would pass away after we had left for our mission. We feel it was a blessing that she has been released from this life and can definitely see the Lord's hand in the timing of everything. We will miss her but know that she is definitely better off now.
Wayne has a cousin who just returned from a mission in Southern India. He reports that they have had 7 couples return home and their replacements were unable to get Visa's and went elsewhere. Two of those couples were Humanitarian Missionaries so that blows Wayne's theory that they might issue the Visa for humanitarian purposes. We are still holding onto a tiny thread of hope that we will be able to go to India but it is not looking real good.