Missionary work in West Africa can be extremely rewarding, also very trying and challenging. I believe we have learnt and grown personally. It is enriching and has helped change my views of the world. It has been a lifetime event that I would now never have missed. Some aspects of it I have found very hard. The poverty and harshness of so many lives. Horrific health issues that many people who can’t afford medical help endure and die from. The eye for an eye mentality, the cruelty, and the corruption of so many government departments is very hard to cope with.
We have been blessed to have a Mission President, Michael Cosgrave and his amazing wife Sister Cindy Cosgrave. They have made our lives so much easier by their love, positiveness, thoughtfulness, encouragement and support of our efforts here in Ghana.
Last week we spent three days at the Mission Home in Kumasi being instructed, learning, sharing life insights, eating wonderful food and relaxing somewhat from our day to day life in Techiman. We were joined by three other “senior couples” who also serve in the Kumasi mission. They are all from the US and we are the only Kiwis. We loved teasing them about how tiny New Zealand with a population of only four and a half million beat the mighty USA and took the America Cup in the boat race.
It was a lovely three days spent doing many varied and some ODD things. We had a challenge race with another team to find a corn field, swimming pool, a school, taxi cab, a mother with a baby on her back and several other wacky things. We had to wear a mask which was supplied, and take selfies with all of us, (four people) in the photos. The Ghanaian people were staring at the four crazy old Obruni people running around trying to do all of the challenges. It was much fun and I was grateful we weren’t arrested for being completely balmy. We were teamed up with Elder and Sister Schow who are the Office missionary couple. They are great sports and we all laughed a lot.
Swimming pool at a hotel.
Outside a school
Mother with a baby on her back carrying a parcel on her head. Two other random people jumped into the photo as it was being taken.
Another great, and not so balmy activity, was having a pedicure with all of the sisters at a new state of the art mall which had opened recently in Kumasi. In the chair beside me is Sister Renfroe who kept giggling as the chair was vibrating and the beautician was tickling her feet.
We all went to the cultural centre for retail therapy. Left in the picture is Sister Dearing the mission nurse. Sister Cosgrave is centre, on her left is Sister Renfroe, my head, and then Sister Schow is on the far right. The Ghanaian girl behind Sister Cosgraves lives in Utah. She has just completed an MA. in voice and performance and was organising a choir to sing the Messiah at Christmas time in Kumasi. We meet her at one of the stalls. The man on the left was a doctor at a huge hospital in Kumasi and was in the choir that was being formed as were the two other Ghanaian men.
The senior couples in the Kumasi, Ghana Mission.
Back row from the left. Elder and Sister Dearing, Sister and Elder Schow. President and Sister Cosgrave.
Front left. Elder and Sister Wood. Sister and Elder Renfroe.