On Thursday, the day before our big training, we participated in an area wide devotional. The couple missionaries were asked to sing at the devotional. It was a special time for us.
Afterwards we joined all the office employees for a special lunch with the Area Presidency. All the employees and missionaries loaded onto very nice buses to ride to a wonderful restaurant where we were treated a wonderful buffet of a great variety of Peruvian dishes including the country favorite ceviche. In the photos below, upper far right, is a picture of our dear area president, Juan Uceda. What a wonderful gesture of unity and love given as a "thank you" to the church employees and office missionaries.
We were greatly blessed to be with our "Assistant Area Auditors" from Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Peru. How special it was to be with them and with Elder Montoya, via teleconference from Salt Lake. We also were blessed to have Rahn Price, from the Church audit department with us. Diane mentioned how the room and arrangement looked like the United Nations, with all the name plaques and countries in front of the men. We were so blessed to be with these humble good men. This truly is the "Payoff" of our efforts and what a time of year to gather as we are reminded of the reason we do what we do, bring others to Christ. Yes, it is even the mission as auditors in the Church. These dear men are so humble and so greatful and gracious. The biggest expense we have all year is in this one training. We fly them here, we feed them catered food, we house them in a very very nice hotel. And most come from very humble circumstances. Even in traveling here many made great sacrifices in time and effort and even, in one instance, a near tragedy. Our brother from Huancayo, en route with his wife in a taxi car, went off the road and rolled three times. Miraculously no one was injured, only some scratches. We were moved to tears listening to him describe his journey. We want to finish with this sweet email one of our brethren from La Paz Bolivia sent today. He wanted to express his feelings to us in his humble English:
My dear Elder Cheney:
First: Thank you for everything you for us.
Second: thanks so much to Sister Cheney. She's great.
Third: Please don't forget send me the instructions I need to know.
And the last: I'll need your help all the time in this calling. And for practice and learn more english.
Thak you very much.
God bless you all the time.
This what it is all about. We are truly blessed to be able to associate with these good good men. What a way to finish our year. Now we will gird up our loins and start over again. One year to go and loving what we do.