|A family welcomes their missionary daughter after the completion of her mission|
We had a week with a lot of variety to it. We accomplished a lot yet the week had a relaxing and uplifting quality to it. Darlene works hard every day but on Saturdays she works especially hard. She teaches piano and trains Family History Consultants.
|A yard with used cranes for sale on the way to the mental hospital|
This Saturday we had an adult session of District Conference at 4:00 pm. Friday feels like a preparation day because our English teaching is finished for the week.
Transfer meeting. Perhaps the transfer meeting on Thursday night was the highlight. Eight new missionaries from Mongolia returned from the Phillipine MTC to join the six American missionaries who arrived on March 4th.
We taught the new missionaries how to invite new converts to become involved with Family History after their baptisms.
|The Richardsons giving their farewell remarks - the incoming and outgoing missionaries are seated on the stand|
They spoke at a packed house fireside program. The departing missionaries also shared their testimonies. Elder and Sister Richardson said their farewells to Mongolia though they still have another week to go.
|Richardsons farewell dinner at Los Bandidos|
The transfer and releases of missionaries will be every 12 weeks when the Provo and Phillipine MTC coordinate to send us new missionaries. There will be an internal transfer every 6 weeks.
|Elder Woodward goes home in June|
By next February this mission will be up to full capacity of foreign missionaries (20 Elders and 10 Sisters). The number of Mongolian missionaries depends on the number of young people called from Mongolia to the Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission.
|A real head scratcher of a test|
English class. We had all 10 students show up for an exam last Wednesday. We have a fun class and will miss them when our class with them ends at the end of March.
|Mongolians are serious test takers|
Our next class starts April 2nd. We invited this group to come back on April 16 to meet our 3 daughters and our daughter-in-law who will be visiting Mongolia.
|Dr. Stewart, Elder England, and myself with our hosts|
A visit to a mental and addiction recovery hospital. I was able to go with Elder Stewart, Elder England and Ulzicka (translator) to the main psychiatric and addictions hospital. We were hosted well and given a tour of the facility by an English speaking doctor.
|The history of psychiatry and mental health in Mongolia|
Dr. Stewart forms working relationships with the medical community all around UB. I gained an appreciation for what the mental health and addiction professionals are doing here with limited resources.
They have a ger village of 10 gers affiliated with the hospital where mental patients live 5 to a ger under supervision. They implement a halfway house concept where patients are taught survival skills (money management, cooking, shopping, personal hygiene, work habits etc.) to help them reintegrate back in society. We didn’t have time to tour that aspect of their program.
|Art therapy room|
We did visit a unit that had art therapy, gardening, a sewing room, a beauty shop, handicrafts, cooking, music therapy, a library and an exercise room. The place was spotless as are all Mongolian hospitals.
|Narantuya's photograph on display|
A visit to Narantuya’s family. Before District Conference today, we visited the home of a member who passed away a week ago. Her funeral was on Friday and they have had lots of company the past few days. Her name was Narantuya. She died at age 29, leaving a husband, a nine year daughter and a two year old son.
|Sister Stewart and Darlene with Narantuya's almost three year old son, Ekh Achlan. He was playing with an electronic "angry birds" game.|
The Branch Relief Society President was doing a needs assessment on what the family might need. She invited the Sister missionaries - Sisters Javzanpagma and Mathews, ourselves, Dr. and Sister Stewart and Elder Wood (our driver) to come along.
|Time to go - Sister Javzanpagma is on the left|
|The family's outdoor rest room|
|Ekhjin, Narantuya, Bathuu, and Ekh Achlan taken three weeks ago|
|The sands of the Gobi desert|
It was a touching and meaningful way to spend the Sabbath.