We have frozen this blog as a historical, yet informational view at what life is like in the West Indies Mission for all those called to serve. This blog was designed for the families and friends of those missionaries serving in the West Indies Mission from July 2006 to July 2009. Every six weeks, photos taken at zone conference as well as a new slide show including every person baptized were posted on the blog. All of the slide shows are also available on our You Tube channel. The current West Indies Mission blog can be found here. Posts on our missionary experience can be found here and earlier. And finally, if you are a returned missionary who served in the West Indies, there is a current blog for you. Click here or visit westindiesrm@blogspot.com

Monday, December 1, 2008

Monday in Suriname

Suriname is on fire (in a good way)

They had their highest ever month of baptisms - 30 in November!

Members and missionaries worked together to make it happen.

Suriname is the first stop on our continuous zone conference tour that will end in St Martin in 14 days. It's tricky to travel to Suriname (flights don't go every day) so we usually start there. Generally the French Guiana elders join us but this time there is a strike going on that closed all the roads in and out. We will try to hook them into the French zone conference in Guadeloupe using technology.

We had an incredible member/leadership training meeting last night. We got caught in nasty traffic as we drove in from the airport and were over an hour late so we called ahead and told the District President that he could just dismiss if it was getting too late for the members. When we finally walked into the downtown Parimaribo chapel, it was absolutely packed and the members were singing "The Spirit of God." They had been signing hymns the whole time and were anxiously awaiting counsel. There was a wonderful, eager to learn, spirit among the members. I can see why baptisms are increasing.

That same spirit was with the elders this morning.

We talked about learning by the spirit, Lehi's dream, and the importance of asking questions as we study and also as we teach.

It was appropriate that graffiti artist, Elder Koenen (pointing at the sign) just happened to have a tree of life to bring to zone conference.

President Robison and I want to be like Lehi and 'stay close to the tree'

President Robison started by asking the elders, "What question weighs on your mind?" They came up with quite a list

We then turned to the scriptures - not to answer each question - but to find out how to receive our own answers. It was a wonderful experience.

President Robison caught this shot during our discussion of Lehi's dream. Even though everyone in the room had read it a number of times - we learned new things we had never seen before as we considered it in the context of our questions

The conference finished with a Christmas hymn provided by Elders Shakespear, Muse, Croese, Riding, and Baantjer

This put us in the mood for Christmas gifts - our annual WIM slideshow DVD. Do they look merry?

After the conference we had our usual amazing Surinamese lunch and then the elders worked on their area books while President Robison conducted interviews.

Elders Muse, Shakespear, Croese, and Riding

Elders Harding and Tholen

Elders Jestice and Sorber

Somehow it all ended in a push up contest (boys are still boys)

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