Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Monday, May 18th

     This morning we woke up to large trucks noisily gearing down, horns honking and motorcycles racing past.  Oh, how I miss my place in Bujumbura where every morning we woke to birds singing, roosters crowing, windows wide open, beautiful sky.  Here n Johannesburg it is fall so temperatures are cool bordering on cold.  My feet are freezing in my sandals!

Photos of the hotel grounds where we are staying

We don't have these at home!  Love the blue in it.

     President Ellis treated us to dinner tonight at a good Italian restaurant.

Tuesday, May 19th

     We went to the Church offices today to try to tie up some loose ends of things left hanging in Burundi.  We worked on making arrangements to get 5 missionaries out of Uvira and Bujumbura so they can leave for their missions from Kigali this Sunday.   We need to arrange to get their visas to them, to have some kind of transport ready to take them to Kigali, and then we need the missionary couple in Kigali to pick them up somewhere.  They will stay with this couple overnight and then the couple will take them to the airport.  Hope this works!

     We met with President Hamilton today, one of the counselors in the area presidency.  We talked about our options, what is going to happen next for us.  He said that when he heard we only had 3 months remaining on our mission, his first thought was " Send them home!"    We also could choose to go to Kolwezi, Congo and live for 3 months.  Start over someplace else.  He left the choice up to us, and we went to the temple this afternoon to see if we could make a decision.  After the session, I came out feeling very peaceful about going home.  That has been Gary's wish for about a week, but we didn't think that would ever happen.  Salt Lake, here we come!

Wednesday, May 20th

     We informed our mission president of our decision to go home and then told the people at the Church offices.  Originally they told us we would leave for home on Thursday (tomorrow), but then they came back and told us flights were booked until Saturday.  So we depart Africa Saturday evening!

     The Ellis's had us over for dinner tonight.  Their place is nice, right next to the temple.  It is a large old mansion with historical significance for Johannesburg.  The Church has made 4 apartments inside for the Area Presidency to use.  The pictures below are taken on the grounds of this building.  It is on a hill overlooking Johannesburg.


  1. We are so glad that you are safe and sound in S. Africa. We have spent some time in Kolwezi and you are making the right decision to go home. It would take a lot to set things up there and seems that three months would just be a frustration to you. You have served well and we're glad that you are going home safely.
    We know the hotel and the White House in JoBurg well. We stayed with Renlunds in that house for the three weeks of our evacuation and at the hotel several times. We love the beautiful grounds of the hotel. JoBurg has much to offer for a little touristing if you can get time to do it. We loved our little breaks there. Enjoy it while you're there if you can.
    We are grateful that the prayers of many for your safety were positively answered. Now we'll just continue to pray for the Burundians.

  2. We hope someday to hear the story of how you finally got out of Burundi and to meet. Maybe at the Congo couples reunion in Oct. Bon voyage.

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