President and Sister Dunn

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Farewell Events

In the last few weeks we have hosted many final events in the mission home and also been invited out to dinner with many dear friends from South Africa.  Some are our missionary couples that we will see again stateside, but most are our dear South African friends that we hope to see again when they travel stateside. We also plan to travel back this way and be with them again. We love them all dearly.
This was the  last day of interviews and our Vaal Zone singing the mission song one last time with us.

At our last Zone conference, the Assistants organized a final departing gift for us from all the missionaries. This personalized copy of the scriptures with a buffalo hide cover will be a Dunn family keepsake. Words cannot express how much we love it and each and every single missionary.
Again, a heartfelt thanks to Elder Zitumane and Elder Campbell for organizing such a timeless, meaningful gift. We will always treasure this.

 We loved welcoming Elder and Sister Hunt in the month before we departed. This was their first morning after they arrived. We hosted a breakfast and orientation meeting with them and the office senior couples.

We welcome this brave couple coming all the way to Johannesburg, South Africa from Oklahoma. They will be serving in an area called Sharpville for the next 18 months.
After we dropped them in Sharpville, we stopped for dinner in a great little town near them called Parys and had dinner by the Vaal River at a place called "O's." Great memory with my companion.

Dinner out with our dear friends, Tina and Bryan Jackson. They live in a very wonderful flat in Oakland. We loved finally seeing where they live and all the special ways they have decorated it- especially with Tina's decorating expertise and watercolor talent. We love the Jacksons and are excited to see them in Utah in the future.

We will miss spending P-Days with great local friends and our Bionic Bike Club. Here was one of our last road rides in Suikerbosrand. We love Keith and Josh Williams and Vic Brummer. We loved sharing the gospel and our mission with them over all our rides.
Sister Wenzile Radibe and her mother Grace Mbobo are in our hearts forever. We loved seeing them regularly in the temple on Fridays.  We cherish all our memories together with them in the mission home for FHE's, women conferences together, ladies luncheons and church meetings. Members don't get any better than this.

Farewell events always will hold some special visitors. We have been so blessed to share this amazing experience with friends and family. This last set of visitors were so special. We loved having the Clements, Foss' and the Bennett's with us in our final month or so. Having them with us at the temple with missionaries, at Stake Conference in Soweto and also the Summit Zone Conference was more than we could every ask for. Such a blessing to us and our missionaries.

An invitation to dinner at the Vizzini's was so special. After a delcious dinner (Better than any gourmet restaurant) we were treated to music played and sung by Gianfrance. It was a highlight for us in every way. Thanks dear friends.

Lynne and Theo have kept us culturally connected by planning theatre nights for us on our Preparation Days. We loved going one last time to the theatre and this time we had tickets for West Side Story. We love Lynne and Theo and so nurtured by their deep and meaningful friendship.
We were able to host a Sunday lunch with Veron, Lynne and Tyler before we left. Veron is in her late 80's and is so sharp and has such a great memory of the history of the Church and the mission in South Africa. 

She was joined by her lovely family and also sister Willis and Sister Foxx on this memorable last Sunday lunch with members in the mission home.

We loved having Elder and Sister Whyte come over and get acquainted before we leave. The Whyte's just arrived as senior missionaries serving in the Office of general Counsel with Bryan Jackson. The Whyte's are from Richmond Virginia and know our Jeff and Whitney. It was so fun to learn more about them and also about Richmond and the church there. We get to go back east upon arriving home and see Richmond for the first time before our son and his family move after graduate school.

Our next door neighbors, Lynn, Cecil and Pierre Van Breda have been so close and dear to us. We have exchanged many dinners and events together. We have gone out to restaurants with them, enjoyed the Young Ambassadors when they came to Johannesburg. We love this family and thank them for welcoming us to the neighborhood. This last dinner at their home was so special. We feel so blessed to have them as friends. Thanks Lynn for making such a delicious final dinner together.
......and for writing in our South Africa book and leaving some sentiments for us to take home.

It was a special memory to be with Richard and Kathy Black on our last trip to Nelspruit. After a day of interviews, teaching seminary, teaching with Elders in Nelspruit and KaNymazane, we grabbed dinner together at Zest and had a wonderful time reflecting on the amazing opportunity to serve here. We will see them next on Mt. Olympus Way. We feel blessed they are in our ward and our dear friends and neighbors

Another special memory was the  invite from the Jackson family to go out to dinner before we left for home. They treated us to a fun dinner at Hyde Park Corner at JB's Kitchen. What a special family we have come to know and love so much. After we had to finish off with an ice cream finale! Love to you- Jackson Family!

A special night out with Glenn and Mandy Holmes. Glenn is the Benoni Stake President and we love their family. We have been so blessed by their friendship and look forward to seeing them stateside at conference in the next year. 

One of my best buddies here. Lynne Dallnedar has made so much effort to be friends and I have been so blessed by her efforts to be together and bless our lives. Love to you my dear friend.

1 comment:

  1. Would like to say a big thank you to the Dunns for providing us with this awesome blog of the SAJ mission.
    It has so helped me feel connected to my son, keeping up to date with events and special moments, and making me feel part of the journey. I do hope the new mission president will continue this wonderful provision. All the best to the Dunns!