Saturday, February 21, 2015

Missionaries: From Malawi with love (of the Gospel) - Carole's Post

There is another story about getting to know wonderful missionaries - not the ones we serve with, but the Malawians who are either preparing to go on missions, those who are on the cusp of leaving, and those who have returned.

A few weeks ago, we were so excited to be able to go to the airport to pick up Chisomo Phiri, who had just completed her mission in Kenya.  Chisomo is a sister to Brother Banda in our Zingwangwa branch so we picked up the Banda family so they could welcome her back as soon as she came out of the airport.
 It took two cars to get everyone there and to have room for her luggage.  Once we got there, we saw that the flight was delayed.  That was okay, because Comfort, Conscious, and Cornus (Corni) Banda had never seen a plane before except once high in the sky in the distance, so we walked all around the airport to find the most strategic spot to see the plane arrive.  We waited and waited; there were no airport personnel to give us an update on the arrival. The posting on the arrival board listed the Enthiopian Airline arrival time as:  TODAY.  It got darker and darker...

And there she is!

The Reynolds took the Bandas home and George dropped off Sister Phiri's aunt in another part of town. Then George and I drove back to Soche and made the climb to the Banda's home so he could release her from her mission. We brought our flashlights and umbrellas, but the conditions were terrible!  I slipped and fell, getting covered with mud all down one side. Still, when we arrived, there was such a sweet spirit in the home.  How great to be reunited with family!

On Sunday, we added Chisomo's photo to the picture board at the branch.

The following day, George set apart Felix Paul as a missionary in the Johannesburg South Africa mission.  The senior couples, along with his branch president who is still filling out paperwork, gathered inside the Blantyre building.
Brother Christopher helped him with his new tie.
Notice the tag on his brand new suit!

The new Elder Paul will make a wonderful missionary!

And off he goes to the MTC in Jo'burg!

We currently have two missionaries in the Zingwangwa branch who have received callings.
Maxwell Mbele, who has been a member for three years,  leaves in four weeks for a mission to Mozambique. 
He will fly to Brazil for for language training at the MTC!

 Khama Gangire leaves in April for the South Africa Johannesburg mission.

Having Sister Phiri back in our branch means we now have four missionaries still serving.  We also have six returned missionaries in the Zinwangwa branch.  They serve as the branch president, executive secretary, clerk, YSA and gospel doctrine teachers, institute teachers, and in the district YW presidency. 

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland said  “Africa has been held in reserve by the Lord.   Africa will someday be seen as a bright land full of gospel hope and happiness.

 These are the people who will make that come true.