Sunday, December 2, 2012

Graduation and Baptism

Greetings to All from wonderful Borneo.  It is now officially the Christmas season here in Borneo.  Believe it or not, they do celebrate Christmas here.  It is even an official holiday with time off of work and everything.  There is a big tree in the downtown area and Christmas sales are going on in all the department stores.  I was surprised.  I found some Christmas decorations left over from previous senior couples and decided to put them up to make the apartment look festive.  I found one small - 2 1/2 ft- tree, a Happy Christmas decoration for the door, 3 poinsettias, 6 ea of red, green and gold balls, about 10' for pine garland and four big bows.  I worked really hard for the better part of 5 minutes and got the whole place decorated.  It doesn't look too bad, but nothing like the 2 days I would spend at home decorating for the holidays.  It will have to do.  I have found some CD's "Oldies for Christmas" and boy they are old.  Some of the artists even I don't recognize.  But, the songs do also add to the Christmas feeling.  It is hard to feel too Christmasy when it is 90 degrees outside and not one snowflake in sight.  It will be a different Christmas, I'm sure but I'm also sure we will make great memories and come to love our Borneo Christmas.

This week was seminary and Institute graduation for the KK branches.  Bro. and Sis. Nielsen are the senior couple in charge of the S&I program.  They have been traveling all over east Malaysia to have the graduations in each of the branches.  There last one was today and they will be glad to be home.  Our S&I branches put on a little skit as part of the program.  They acted out the story of Queen Esther.  It was darn cute.  We only had about 4 seminary certificates given out and about 8 to 10 Institute certificates.  We did have one student who earned is Institute Diploma.  That is terrific.

This is a picture of the S&I students in their costumes.  They are singing a song at the end of their skit called "Perfect Faith".  I was really proud of them.  They did a great job.
These are the graduates with their certificates, front row l to r:  Crystel Chin, Viviana Chua, Tiffiny Teo, Betty Mojindal, Minna Justin and Jennifer Justin.  Back row l to r: Jackolyn Chua (no relation to Viviana and Ching), Ching Chua (Viviana's older sister), Stenley Chua (brother of Ching and Viviana) and David Liew.  There were a couple of others who were unable to attend the presentation.
The group:  front row l to r:  Pres. Lai, Elder and Sister Nielsen, Sis. Maylin Chua (seminary teacher), Sis. Mary Ling (institute teacher), Pres. Ling, Elder and Sis. Read.  Back row l to r: Crystel Chin, Viviana Chua, Tiffiney Teo, Stenley Chua, David Liew, Jackolyn Chua, Ching Chua, Betty Mojindal, Minna Justing and Jennifer Justin.

It was sad that only a few parents came.  These kids are really remarkable and have the initiative to do these extra things on their own.  I learn a lot from them.  This is the future of the church in Malaysia and they are all excellent young men and women.

We also had a baptism on Saturday night.  Lexlee turned 8 years old, although he isn't much bigger than a US 6 year old.

His mother is Sis. Alice and she has two other young sons, about 5 and 3.  She is so much fun to be around. She is teaching these young sons to be wonderful young men.  Their father is not a member, but he does allow them to come to church and to be baptized.  He even allowed Sis. Alice to attend the temple in July and take out her own endowments.

After the baptism we had food of course.  This is Lexlee with his birthday cake and his brother Eric with Sis. Alice in the background.  Happy Birthday Lexlee.

On Saturday Elder Joshua Subandriyo, area authority 70, came to KK to train on teaching the new curriculum for youth.  We picked him up at the airport and then he came back to our apartment for a late lunch.  We had also invited the district presidency to come to lunch.  I told them they would have to eat American food as I don't know how to cook Malay style.  They were all good sports and pretended to like it.  I didn't know I had cooked the wrong type of rice.  Who knew rice came in different "types".  I thought there was your basic long or short grain white or brown rice, but not so.  If you want steamed riced, there is a rice for that; if you want fried rice there is a rice for that; if you want rice pudding, there is a rice for that; and if you want rice porridge there is a rice for that.  Seems like I had cooked the rice used for porridge.  It was a stickier rice and not at all fluffy.  I thought it tasted ok but then I'm not a rice connisour (sp).  After they pointed out that I had used the wrong rice, they choked it down as best they could and were very nice about it.  I had also made a fruit salad using a lot of the local fresh fruits.  When I passed the salad around, they said they would eat it later as you didn't eat your fruit with the main course.  Who knew?  Obviously, not me.  I had made a nice cake for dessert, but it was "too sweet" for after a meal.  Some ate it, some didn't.  I took what cake was left over to Lexlee's baptism to go along with the meal they had there.  Some must of thought it wasn't too sweet, because every last crumb was gone in less then five minutes time.

Elder Subandriyo is such a wonderful man.  We enjoy being with him so much.  He is down to earth and not afraid to laugh and be silly sometimes with the members.  They all look forward to his visits.  It is easy to see why he is a GA.

Hope everything is going well for everyone.  We love to hear from you.  Please drop us a line if you get a chance.  It is how we keep up with everything going on in the terrestrial world.  Love to All   E/S Read

1 comment:

  1. Fun! Nice to hear that you have Christmas over there. Thanks for the updates. I was wondering if people in other parts of the world are using the new curriculum for youth as so many parts of the world don't have access to the internet. Are they using the new curriculum on the internet next year? If so, how or where do they access the internet?