The Photos above: Senior missionary dinner at Texas Joe's, a favorite American restaurant by Subic Bay. Donna and I in the office with Sister Dahle; President and Sister Dahle photo with the Assistants to the President.
This is really happening! As President Dahle told us...when President Lacanienta drives into the Mission boundaries, the priesthood keys for the mission are his, and President Lacanienta is then the Dahle's Mission President.
This is our Mission Map and our Branches/Wards as they are today. The Calapacuan Ward is where we live, in the Olongapo Zone. The white area of the map is water and the grey area is land to give you a little idea of where we are. We are on the northern Luzon island. Manila is east of us.
Not only are we saying good-bye to the Dahle's, but two other senior couples are also being released this week. The Perrero's are returning home on Wednesday after being with us for a year. They have taken care of the missionaries and members in the northern two zones and lived in Masinloc. The Wright's have been serving a live-at-home service mission for over 3 years! They live in the San Antonio zone and have been indispensable! I'm not sure the mission will function properly without them. Actually, it is going to be difficult without both of these senior couples! Quoting a general conference talk..."Even if these seniors don't know the local language, their accomplishments are great and their spirit of sacrifice is precious." Elder Russell M. Nelson.
These pictures are some of our sights this past week or so. 1) farm equipment in the road...a familiar scene here or at home. 2) a marker for the 'Bataan death march' from WWII. These markers dot the roads in the southern part of our mission. 3) a bell tower in the Freedom Park in Bataan. 4) one of many mango trees just full of mangos...the best mangos in the world! 5) Elder Poulsen added a necktie to my collection so that I can add it in my necktie quilt from my missions. 6) Jeepney with "Arizona express" on the back flap. The jeepneys have all kinds of signs, but of course, we loved this one!
Below are some pictures we wanted to share. The first is our same Elder Poulsen. He was one of our office elders. We visited him the day before his birthday, his 'preparation'-day, to deliver a birthday treat for him and his housemates. We found him doing laundry and had to get a picture of laundry in action. The second picture was captured as we were driving on the highway the same day. When we stopped to take the picture of this laundry drying on the guard rails, a woman started crossing the road to protect her clothes, I believe. It was the sunny side of the road and her clothes needed to get dry!!!!!
We did meet President and Sister Lacanienta this morning! We are anxious to get to know them and work with them during our last few months in the Philippines. We will have to share pictures next week after our week of activities with them. They are going to be so busy this week, but that is what they wanted.
We are so grateful for this mission opportunity. We love the Lord; we love the people; we love our missionaries; we love serving!