Wednesday, August 26, 2009


This is Humble Jeepney Week.

We dedicate this blog entry to every jeepney that's had its glory days--somewhere in the past.

That still rumble along in spite of being looked down upon by the new little sporty jeepneys, or the big "bells and whistles" jeepneys.

We've been back from lunch and errands for a couple of hours. The office is silent except for rode noise and the air con. That's what it's called here--air con.

When I'm sitting at my computer and I lean forward looking to the right, this is what I can see:

That bright white stripe is Elder Reed's back. He's sitting at his computer working on--finance stuff.

And now a close-up:

Definitely worth a full shot! Hmmm. That office resembles his office at home--teaming with activity. How do you keep a perfectly clean office and get stuff done?

This is my realm:

I make sure my desk is cleared off once a day. I'm so exposed up by the front door. It's probably a blessing or my desk would also look like my desk at home.

We must be getting better at what we do. It feels smoother--under control. Not that it's perfect, just that we don't feel like we're about to careen over the cliff.

This week is interview week. President and Sister Hansen were in most of the day yesterday, he interviewing (companionships this time) and she teaching the missionaries all kinds of interesting important things while they wait their turn.

Many of Sister Hansen's teachings are health-related. She is a very capable woman, having raised 5 children herself. But no mother, no matter how "Super Mom", who instantly becomes the "mother" of 130 knows what to do with all the health challenges that arise.

She has a well-stocked bag of mom-tricks, including capable doctors. One of her tricks is knowing when to send a missionary to see Dr. Tan and when to just put him/her on a round of antibiotics, which is entirely within her realm. Often this is successful--no perscription is needed, just go to the pharmacy and pick up your choice of bacteria-killer.

We don't wait around before going the antibiotics route here. Seemingly innocent hurts or sniffles or pains can turn nasty fast, including many skin-related issues. A rash could put you in the hospital if you don't tend it properly. A cut is nothing to scoff at! Scrub it! Disinfect it! Keep it covered.

We (at least the mission oldies) have heightened awareness of this from having watched President Hansen suffer miserably through a bad case of cellulitis, which stemmed from from a simple little cut when he was trimming his toenails. Needless to say, when I slipped on some wet coral when we were up hiking in our foothills a month ago and received a good scrape on my arm, I scrubbed and scrubbed. It healed well, by the way.

If Sister Hansen is Dr. Mom, then I am surely her first assistant. Reminding the missionaries of their responsibility to exercise good hygiene and encouraging steady, thoughtful self-care are definitely within my realm. The missionaries--I am the one out front who talks to them about all sorts of stuff when they come into the office. I love them dearly and am eager to encourage them in whatever area they are low in.

Recently we had the four missionaries from Camotes Island come in to pick up their support. It just so happened that they were all sick--poor fellas, having to travel when they should have been home in bed. Nevertheless, here they were in the office, so I quizzed them about their hygiene practices. Three of them as good as took notes and the fourth acted like, "oh yeah, yeah, whatever." This was my signal for a Scotch Blessing, which I think surprised him! I reminded him in no uncertain terms that it is our DUTY to tend our bodies mindfully. We didn't come across the world to get sick casually--easily, or to make others sick, but to share the gospel!

It's time to wrap things up for the day. I will teach my first piano lesson in a half hour to lovely Edren Sagayno--a young mom with 3 children. Her husband is in Cebu 1's bishopric and is building a catering business. His food is veeeery good. Edren is absolutely steady in her practicing habits, which means her progress is steady also. Very satisfying for both of us.

Look at that fine hand position! Can't beat that in a new student.

You are always close in our hearts! Want to make our day? Just drop a line. And I mean a line. An epistle is certainly appreciated, but don't wait till you've done something spectacular say hello. We're grateful for this very special opportunity of service. We know the gospel is true--know by the whisperings of the spirit that this is His work--His church. For all the challenges of life, we have great peace in our hearts. Life is good with Christ as our focus and role model.

Kevin and Ann
Elder and Sister Reed