President and Sister Dunn

Friday, June 27, 2014

"Ubuntu" - Johannesburg Arrival

After a very teary farewell with our children and grandchildren, we hopped on the plane and flew first to Atlanta and then boarded a 16-hour flight to Johannesburg. It was, seriously, the longest day of traveling in my life before finally arriving in this beautiful city tonight. At the airport we were greeted by Elder Cook, the President of the Area Seventy, who took us to our hotel near the city. We will be spending two days here in training, before meeting the Omers on Monday and officially taking over. We are feeling exhausted, overwhelmed, but also really fired up about the sweet work that is ahead of us. 

On the plane Linda and I watched a "TED Talk"( between reviewing chapters of "Preach My Gospel") that is remarkable. It's called "What I Learned from Nelson Mandela." It's 14 minutes long and well worth it. The link is:

In the talk, the African concept of "Ubunto" is introduced by the speaker who is a white South African named Boyd Varty. It means, "I am, because of you." Linda and I agreed that we are what we are because of YOU—all our amazing family and friends. And if you thought my bear story is scary, wait until you hear what happened to him. Yikes! (MAD)

You know it's big deal when even your sweet daughter-in-law is crying the first time you FaceTime! This is cute Whitney Dunn (Jeff's wife) who just sobbed when we called her from the plane. Along with Mindy and Chase, we really hit the jackpot with our kid's spouses and love them all so much.
It's been so much fun to be a missionary already. We are talking to everyone we can about the Gospel. But despite how persuasive Linda can be, her seat mate wasn't very interested.

22 hours after leaving SLC, we arrived in Johannesburg. And we're so happy to be here. First impressions; Beautiful people and city. It has a feeling of a city that feels a little African and a little European. Can't wait to discover it.

Leaving the airport gave us a fleeting glimpse of Africa's legendary sky and sunsets. And it was stunning—even the airport view. Count on lots more sunset and sunrise pics.


  1. that sunset picture, wow! you weren't kidding!!
    i love cute whit crying and the sleepy seatmate.
    the adventure begins!! can't wait to see more of joburg. xoxoxoxo

  2. This is fantastic. Looking forward to more of the hilarity, spirituality and beauty that you'll share!

  3. A flood of memories came rushing back as I read your post. Thanks for the Ubunto thought - a wonderful thing to remember. God bless you as you begin this great adventure.