May 16 – 22 The LDS College’s big 40!

Bake sale!  The LDS Church college started celebrating it’s 40th anniversary this week with a dance, speeches, unveiling of a gigantic number 40 in the gym, and a bake sale offering items like the brownies Tandra and Amelia made at the institute.  They were yummy!IMG_2231.jpg

The LDS Church College began as a vocational school, but now offers academic classes to students in grades 7 through 13 (college freshman).  Here, those grades are called “Form 1-7.”  The school still offers technical training, along with released time seminary and institute.  Several Form 7 students also attend our Institute of Religion classes, and we love seeing them come straight from school, still wearing their uniforms.

We welcomed a new face to the institute this week — Lasarusa, who just returned from his mission to the Philippines.  It’s been fun to see the reunions of returning missionaries with their old friends, like David and Lasarusa shown below:IMG_2220.jpg

Tetika was able to have a reunion of his own with the two young men from Kiritibati seated in the picture below.  They have received mission calls, but are here waiting for visas, so we were happy to have them join our Mission Preparation class.  The one holding the Preach My Gospel book described how confused and unsettled he was after his father’s death, but that when the missionaries found his family and he heard them explain the Plan of Salvation, he was filled with incredible peace, and knew that what they were saying was true.  I’m sorry he has to wait for his visa to Washington State, but we’re thankful he was here long enough for us to hear his humble testimony.IMG_2227.jpg

Jeannette (a member of our Institute council) told us her father wouldn’t let her sit for a driver’s exam until she learned how to parallel park and do a three point turn, so Elder Whitehead took her straight out to the parking lot and demonstrated:IMG_2224.jpg

Can’t you just hear “varoom-varoom?”  It was hilarious to watch.  Mission policy prevents us from allowing anyone but missionaries in our car, so later Elder Whitehead had Jeanette stand on the sidelines so she could at least see him park and turned in our car.   Which was all perfect timing for me to use as in introduction to a lesson on Hyrum Smith being told to wait to preach the gospel until he had learned more. (Seek not to declare my word, but first seek to obtain my word…).  It was great.

Our YSAs continue to keep the temple running — most are ordinance workers there, and these two were kind enough to leave the institute the moment we received a call from the temple presidency asking for help. We are so proud of them!IMG_2228.jpg

BIG NEWS!!  Finally, after months of waiting, the meeting to organize multi-stake YSA activities under the priesthood is scheduled for next Saturday, May 28th.  HOORAY!  Elder Johansson considers this to be such an historic meeting that it will be held in the Berry Road chapel, where the Church began in Fiji.  We’ll let you know how it goes:)


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