|Can you see anything wrong with this picture?|
|Ivaloni Alden and Family|
The Sister missionaries in Sapwalap have a new little house they moved into. It was furnished with new appliances. We inherited their refrigerator. I am so happy! It will be so helpful when we cooked for zone conference. LeFevre's inherited a microwave, water cooler, white board, and shelves. The Vincent's inherited a washing machine because they do not have a laundra mat in their building but do have a hook up on their porch. We are all very happy.
The mother of a member of the Kolonia Branch, Bro. Simran, died. His wife asked the senior sister's to come to the mortuary when she and her sister-in-law dressed her. The sister that had died had been to the temple. Sister Simran, daughter-in-law, and one of Bro. Simran's sisters are the only ones in the family that have been to the temple and could dress her in her temple clothing. They do not get to the temple often if they live on this island, maybe once when they get married. Sister Simran and her sister-in-law were afraid they would not remember how to put the temple clothing on the deceased mother. It was an eye-opener to go into the morgue at the State Hospital here in Pohnpei. It is clean and orderly, but it is very backward as far as any kind of technology. The room had fans but was still warm. It is old and needs painting and general repairs. However, there was a good feeling there, the spirit was present as they gently and lovingly got the mother dressed in her temple clothing. She had raised 12 of the fourteen children she had born. The son we know is a counselor at the school. His wife, Sister Simran, teaches home arts, which is Pohnpei's version of Family and Consumer Science (Home Ec.) They are very nice people. They invited us to the funeral and out to the mother's place for the burial. The mother lived far out in the jungle. They bury people in their yards here, very close to the house.
This new home was recently built for her. Her casket was inside and people would go through the house and leave gifts and pay their respects. It was a huge group of people that came to their home, at least 300 - 500. Simran's and friends had prepared a take-out and gave to everyone-rice, chicken, banana, and their island cabbage salad with kim-chi. The relatives, each family, were all given a piece of raw pig which is tradition. They carry it home and cook it.
The casket was lowered in but the cement vault was too short. They had to break out the end. Then they mixed cement with a shovel and cemented the casket in the vault. We stood and sang the whole time they worked. The men worked very hard. It was hot and took about one hour. The next week they were going to build a small house around it. One family I visit teach has a room in their home with a son's vault that was killed in the military. All his things are in there and it is kept very clean and nice, it is just his room. They built the home he is buried in with the money they received from the military when he was killed. Funerals on the island usually last about 4 to 5 days. They are so much work for the family and a big expense. Simran's had a snack for everyone at the funeral in Kolonia, 4 different breads in a takeout container (local donut, roll, cinnamon roll, I can't remember the other), plus giving everyone a dinner that went out to the house. It also takes a lot of pig in a family that size., to give to each family they are related to.
Sister Conrad is the teacher but she was sick so we taught for her. Elder went outside and took pictures of the pineapple.
Maverik, between the two Elders, has been attending seminary in Palikir. He wanted to be baptized and waited several months for permission to get baptized from his parents. Today at inservice meeting, his teacher Marla talked about the changes he made in his language, appearance, and the way he treated others as he learned about the gospel.( left to right Desirae, Elder Tadd, Logan, Maverik, and Elder Haas)
Kilino returned from his mission in December. He served in the Marsh Islands. He came over to check his email--his account wasn't in service anymore. I don't think he has checked it since his mission. We really like him. He lives in the Pohnrokiet, a village in Kolonia the people from the island Kapingi. They live in close quarters and poverty. The members there are truly great people. We attend family home evening there at Bro.and Sister Duiai's house (Kilino's adoptive parents) most Monday nights. Kilino needs to get into school. We thought things were worked out to get him into college here. He went off island to his home island for a funeral and the boat that was picking him up didn't stop so he ended up being gone 2 months. There must be more to the story..........., but that's all we know.
|Mareen Epina, Uh, reading her mission call|
Marleen is 27 and will be going to Melborne, Australia in July. She will be coming to the MTC in Provo so she can have help learning English also well as Preach My Gospel training and other. We saw her at the Post Office that morning so all three missionary couples went to Uh that evening and listened to her read her call. Three member friends were there as well. Her family, except for an inactive brother, and not members. They were nice but not excited for her, they just wonder why Marleen wants to leave them for 18 months.
|Ivaloni Alden, Laiden Lorenzo, Marleen, and Margarita Sahm|
This is the the only outdoor baptismal font on the island. The branch is small and has had missionaries as branch presidents because of a lack of worthy priesthood holders. Recently Brother Redes, of a branch about 20 minutes away, Sapwalap, was made branch president. The Sapwalap branch is including the small Mand branch in their branch activities. President Redes has an island truck and helps them get to the activities. This will be wonderful for this small branch. I don't think any active members of the Mand branch have a car.
The Elders had requested to use the river by the church for the baptism but pigs pollute it and the last Elder's that baptized in the river got ill. A Pohnpeian rain caused the river that day to be high, dirty, and wild--another good reason not to use the river that day. Brother Duiai brought as many people as the bed of his island truck would hoad from his village in Kolonia to see his son-in-law baptized. The people in the back of the truck were soaked in the heavy rain but came prepare with a dry set of clothes. It rained buckets--a true Pohnpei rain.
|Lehny Lorenzo, Laiden's brother, working on his mission papers.|