President and Sister Dunn

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

March 30 Departure Dinner

March 30 Departing Dinner

Elder Kalani and Elder Matos departed the mission on April 16, 2015, just 2 weeks after the other's left. It is such a bittersweet experience to say good-bye to these great Elders. They will be greeted home by loving families.Elder Kalani heads home to Kenya and will wait overnight in the mission home and then re-unite with his family. He has 2 younger brothers that will be so impressed to hear of his experiences firsthand.
Elder Matos heads home to Venezuela. He has exciting plans ahead and his family is so excited to get him home. We hope to keep in touch with all of these great Elders.
We enjoyed our 7th transfer dinner tonight with 4 Elders and a wonderful senior couple. Pictured above is Elder Kalani, the Meldrum’s, Elder Matos, Elder Kolditz and Elder Stapley.  We all gathered together for a memorable evening in the mission home. 
It is always meaningful to have them get dropped off by their companion and district and watch the parting. It is a tender and special time for these Elders. Two years is a long time and you can feel the bittersweet parting.
 Leaving us with a scrapbook page is a nice way to begin the evening.
Dinner was nice with this smaller group tonight. It was also our last night with Elder Malapula as an Assistant. 
He is leaving and going back into the mission field. He has become part of our family in a very special way. We love him and love his countenance and style. He will be missed.
After dinner we gather in the living room and have a meaningful discussion and reflection on the past 2 years. We heard from the Meldrum's about their experience and then had an opportunity to have the departing elders share specific examples from their experience.
We ended with music and the mission song. Elder Stapley got to take a look at the famous baseball signed by Willie Mays that his mom gave to us before we came to South Africa. It was a special night in every way.  These four elders stayed downstairs in the missionary pad. We loved having everyone spend the night.

The next morning starts bright and early. They had to be at the MTC at 6:45 to pick up the new missionaries. 

On transfer day, each of the departing Elders shared their testimonies and also participated in the morning with the new Elders. 

Airport good-byes are always hard. We expect to stay in touch with all our Elders and hope they will stay in touch with us. Elder Kalani and Elder Matos leave in two weeks, so they will be pictured later.
Right before we dropped off Elder Kolditz and Stapley for their flights back to the USA, we were able to meet a new Elder to the SAJM, Elder Roberts.
*Elder Roberts, Elder Dye (his new trainer) President Dunn, Elder Kolditz, Elder Stapley, Elder Menendez

Elder Kolditz and Stapley with President and Sister Dunn

Elder Stapley with the Dunn's. What an awesome Elder that leaves a strong legacy in the mission. 

Elder Kolditz with the Dunn's. We were glad to send him home with all his belongings! :) What a happy and effective Elder on every level. 

In an effort to be compliant with the missionary department and eliminate backpacks in the mission, Elder Kolditz is taking home a SAJM mission messenger bag, which almost every Elder in the mission will soon have.

1 comment:

  1. cute cute cute! bittersweet goodbyes! i love your new scarf!