The Port Pirie Elders have caught the spirit of the season. Since we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving here, we jump on Christmas a bit earlier than state side! We were inspecting their flat and were greatly surprised by the light show and even more by the immaculate flat. It is so great working with Elder Angelo, Dickey and Payne.(LtoR). Their flat is a 3 hour drive from Adelaide. We took them an extra mattress and desk to accommodate the 3rd elder.
We had the final dinner at the Presidents home for these wonderful missionaries. They represent all that are going home with in the next transfer cycle. The ones that are still waiting to leave and be posted on our blog are Elder Langi 3rd from right in middle picture and Sister Draney, in light blue sweater. Brother and sister Rohlfing are on left in center picture. We love and hate to see these great missionaries leave.
Elder Ruppe who was the assistant to the President for awhile came to the end of his mission. Tears were shed by all and it was a difficult parting. Just as he left, he surprised us by giving us an invitation to his wedding, in two weeks! He had kept that from us to that time. Long story short, dated a girl for 3 years before his mission, she left on a mission 9 months before he did, served in the St. George mission. They are to be married in the St. George temple! They are from North Carolina! We definitely wish them the very best for eternity!
We went to take Sister Mathes to airport to return home to Samoa. The Withingtons had previously taken another missionary who went to Northern Territory and met us their for a bit of a reunion. Sister Mathes was one who always had the smile you see on her face at all times. No wonder Sister Smith will miss her! “Parting is such sweet sorrow”!
Elders Leutele and Mikami left for home at same time. One of the mini miracles we see on a daily basis occurred. Our records for departure from Auckland had Elder L leaving at 6:00 am and Elder Mikami at 7:00 am. As we were standing around waiting for Elder Leutele’s departure, Elder Mikami checked his boarding pass and realized he was on the same flight. The airlines forgot to get that information to us. All ended well as Elder Mikami is in Oregon and Elder Leutele in New Zealand!