Friday, November 27, 2015

Feb 15, 2015 Visiting Families in Phnom Penh and Baku

We met so many nice families who were excited to meet Elder Vore's parents.  We could see how much Adam loved these people and they loved him.  They welcomed us into their humble homes and offered us dinner and canned sodas.  We met Champai the first night just after it got dark.  She was sitting on a tarp with many family members on the side of a busy road.  There was a platter of meat and vegetables in the center of the tarp and all the family sat around it as they shared the meal. She owned a tuk tuk cart and offered to drive us around while we visited families.  She spoke no English, but her strong spirit and love was unmistakeable.

We enjoyed the busy day and then returned to the mission home for an evening with President and Sister Moon and all of the missionaries who were heading home.  We had a traditional Khmer dinner with everyone in a nice dining room in the mission home.  It was neat to get to know some of the other missionaries that Adam served with.
Elder Tanner Satterthwaite was one of the missionaries that we got to know.

 After dinner we had a closing testimony meeting.  It was so awesome to be there, listening to our son bear his testimony as a missionary, and feeling the Spirit.
Cambodian primary kids hold up pictures from the kids in our ward back home. 

The following day was Sunday and we got up early to attend 9am church meetings and visit all the members.  Adam translated for us and we felt right at home singing the hymns from the same green hymnal we have in the states--only in khmer!

 After church Champai offered to drive us to Baku for church meetings with the Branch in the afternoon. The road was very bumpy with many potholes, but also very lovely with rice fields everywhere, banana trees, and lots of other jungle type trees.  When we got to the Branch meeting house, which was the bottom floor of someone's house, several members came outside to greet whoever it was that was coming.  They were so surprised to see Elder Vore and ran to him with tears in their eyes.  They talked fast and excitedly and were overwhelmed to see him.  Adam was equally emotional during the reunion and then we were quickly ushered into the building to be introduced to all the members in attendance.  Mom played the music during the church services and we listened to Adam translate for us as the Branch President announced the meeting and asked if all 3 of us would speak.  Surprise!

After church we walked through the village to find the home of one of the families that Adam taught and baptised.  He loved this particular family and was always at their home. 

 Lately they haven't been coming to church and he was so sad to hear this and wanted to visit them and invite them to return and be strong again.  The family was not home and Adam was very emotional about not being able to see them one last time to say goodbye.  Champai noticed how sad Adam was and went through the village looking.  She finally found the mother and brought her back.  It was a tender and emotional reunion.  Adam cried as he shared his testimony and love for her and her fmaily and pled wit her to return to church.  After all of the visiting, Champai drove us back to the big city in the dark on the same pot holed busy dangerous street that Adam wrote about in his emails--driving on his bike late at night when a big truck pulled behind him and lit the way for him along the dangerous road when they had no light.  It was so cool to travel to the places that we had read about all those months before.

Late that night we returned to our hotel and President Vore released Elder Vore from his full time missionary service.  It was one more very emotional experience.

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