Thursday, July 21, 2011

Daughters of Helaman

Daughters of Helaman

The scriptures and sacrament meeting talks have a lot to say about the Sons of Helaman.  Deseret Book and Seagull Book are big on T-shirts with Sons of Helaman logos.  But what of the daughters?  Well, we met some of the daughters this past week.  They were starting their missions from their homes in Laputa.  

None of them were born in Laputa.  They are the children of refugees who fled Lubumbashi and Katanga Province during the revolution in the 60's.  They are the Anti-Lehi-Nephi's of the Congo.  Now they will bless their country, though at one time they were not wanted.  The Book of Mormon is a type for our day.  Read it carefully to see the other parallels for the Last Days.   

Nine new missionaries left Laputa last Friday on their way to Kinshasa for shots, passports and visas before going to Ghana and the MTC.  Half way here they learned that their flights had been canceled.  It being impossible to return home, they continued here.  (The airline had been closed by the government after the disastrous crash at Disangani.  Apparently tower error in inclement weather.  Due to the poor airport lighting Congolese planes don't fly at night.)  They arrived in Mbuji-Mayi at 10 p.m.  The 4 elders were housed with our 8 full-time elders at the missionary apartment.  The 5 sisters came to our home and were housed in the 2 upstairs apartments, arriving at 11 p.m.  

For breakfast we fed them what we had: cut-up fruit, yogurt and round buns.  Despite having never eaten yogurt, they did pretty well but didn't grasp the concept of putting fruit on the yogurt.  The buns they broke into pieces with their hands

 Although Congolese don't usually eat lunch, we tried to feed them sandwiches made with canned beef.  We made the  mistake of just putting the mayonnaise on the table which they layered think.  Surprisingly, they didn't seem to like the beef.  However half the butter disappeared in thick chunks.  No doubt they all had the same thought: "How strange this American food!"

For dinner they ate foo-foo with the members.

For breakfast Sunday they said hot milk would be good along with buns again.  Again we made the mistake of putting the can of powdered milk on the table unsupervised.  They spooned the powder into their cups and then started eating it dry, even though the teapot with hot water was on the table.  

Sunday dinner: foo-foo with the members.

We finally just bought new tickets (with mission funds) for Tuesday.  Kinshasa will have to deal with the defunct airline.  So Monday night would be a picnic at our house.  A meal of rice and sauces had been prepared by the members and the girls sat down and ate it all gone.  Later that evening they prepared foo-foo in our kitchen (another error) for the boys and it was a mess.  They did clean up (pretty good).  

The airline had overbooked so 5 of the missionaries were bumped, two boys and three girls.  The local brother scavenged up other tickets and they finally had tickets for Thursday afternoon, only the plane was delayed and because of the late hour didn't come until Friday morning.   All left.  High five!

The girls made foo-foo again for dinner but this time outside.  They got up early the next morning and made foo-foo again for breakfast.  We were afraid that our pans would be blackened on the hibachi but no, the pans looked none the worse for wear.

Here ate the 5 sisters, the Daughters of Helaman
Left to right: Mulaji Sabue Christelle, Bukasa Laurette Kabamba,
                     Tshilobo Ilunga Nathalie, Muika Musasa Mayikel,
                     Mukaya Mukadi Ntantine

We too survived the ordeal.

Elder and Sister Moore

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