All is well here. I just got a letter from Brother Mugg and Sister Phipps containing colored pictures from some of the primary children. That was really nice of them! Thanks so much guys!
Well things are great here. Yesterday was zone conference. We had it at the building here in Ubon, so the whole zone came to Ubon. We had a great session with President Smith and the assistants, and during break, while we were cleaning up and everybody was filing back in to the chapel, 2 of our investigators showed up at the church out of the blue. We showed them the baptismal font and explained how baptism works, and gave them a little tour of the building. PawNarain and MaaNongyaw both have a baptismal date for August 9th, and it was so cool that they just randomly showed up at the church. They are both going to be great!
In preparation for the open house, the members and the missionaries made some displays and visuals to show the people who'd come. They wanted some bamboo to use for some of the visuals, so we got in the back of a pickup with some members, rode out to one of the most remote parts of Warin, and chopped down giant bamboo poles with kitchen knifes. It was sweet, and Elder Volk and I afterwards thought, "man this is sooooo asian, sweet!"
The open house was great. It ended up being more for strengthening members, because none of our investigators came, but it was still a really great experience. Members from the different jungwats in the Pac Isan came to it, and the Stake President came as well. I thought this was very interesting. The current Stake President, President Wisit, was taught and baptized by President Smith when he served here almost 40 years ago. We gave away alot of material, Books of Mormon, Restoration, Plan of Salvation, gospel pamphlets, and alot of Liahona Magazines. It was a great turn out of people. Oh! that reminds me! Do you recognize the name Joanna Hunter? She served a mission in Thailand and got home (to Purdue) about 4 months before I got my call. Well, she showed up at the open house the other day! It was really cool. Small world, huh.
So I saw images of the eclipse on the news, but not in real time, sorry, that would have been spectacular to see! Last november there was an astronomical event where the moon and two planets(or stars, I can't remember) aligned to form a smiley face, and the Thai people really got a kick out of that. There was also a solar eclipse in December as well, but we didn't have glasses, so we couldnt really look at it.
Very nice about all the weddings going on, time flies fast. Its good to see that they are all happy. That's really great! Thanks for all your support!
Note from Mom... I've included an excerpt from our family letter that I thought was neat.
"PawDome came to church last week. Teaching him is going well, he was having some trouble sayings prayers as far as getting the sequence right. One evening last week, we explained the order of saying the prayer, with first starting out by saying " Heavenly Father..." next "Phuud-dam-jai" which means Speak according to your heart, and then "In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen". So, we had him practice that, but instead of that order, he proceeded to say "Heavenly father, in the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen", and looked up with a big smile and said, "was that it?" and Elder Volk was like, "um close. Between 'Heavenly Father' and 'in the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen', you have to speak according to your heart, say what you are thankful for, and ask for blessings, so lets try again." "okay okay, Heavenly Father, in the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen. Thank you for all the..." and proceeded to say the prayer. When he was done, he asked "How was that?" and we said, "um keep working on that."
So, when we met with him last night, we had him say the closing prayer, and it started out with "Heavenly Father..." and a ten second pause as we anticipated what was coming next. But, then he said, "Thank you for..." and proceeded to say it in the right order, yes!!! So that's good now, he's got it."