Monday, July 11, 2016
Happy Birthday Henry and Great Grandma Bell
We took our Brazilian Elder to see the doctor today. The doctor’s office is at the Hospital. He checked him over and didn’t think he had Lupus, which is a good thing, but needed to keep him in the hospital overnight so he could run some tests. So he (and his companion) were checked into the hospital.
We had a progressive dinner tonight with the Lees, Koellikers, Poncios and us. We started at our home for appetizers, then to the Lees for a spaghetti dinner, then to Poncios for dessert and a short lesson. The Poncios gave us ties that were made in Guatemala.
Tuesday, July 12, 2016
We took Koellikers to Esteli to look at homes. We looked at the duplex, and the white house. We went to Rosti Pollie for lunch. The waitress that waited on us acouple of weeks ago remembered us. She was genuinely glad to see us. We didn’t realize we had that kind of impact on her. But it was fun to see her again and we had a good visit.
After lunch we went to a real estate agent that we meet a few weeks ago with the missionaries. She had a house to show us but said we wouldn’t like it because the neighbors drank and would create a problem for us. But she had another house to show us. We went back to La Rivera and looked at the blue house that we have driven by several times. We actually had asked about it but it was too big and a big yard. The owner said he had another smaller facility out of town. So we followed him about 5 km north of town. We stopped at a big wall and gate. He opened it to a big yard, with large trucked parked inside. It had acouple of rooms, a large outside kitchen and separate mens and womens bathrooms. It was an old outdoor restaurant or a bunk house type facility. We had another small apartment with bedroom, living room, kitchen and bathroom on another side. It was all very dirty, poorly built and overall disgusting. We politely told him it was not what we were looking for and left.
The Koellikers decided on the duplex, so we went by the owner’s house and gave them information to begin putting together a contract. Success…. We have a house for Koellikers.
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Today, we did three things: we went to the hospital acouple of times to check on our Brazilian Missionary. Fortunately, he does not have heart problems, but unfortunately, we still don’t know what he has. Sister Bell also took calls all day from sick missionaries and we shopped with the Koellikers. We were supposed to meet Wilbert Navaues, from the Church Facilities Department today, but he cancelled. So we shopped for things the Koellikers needed to buy and not for things the Church will buy. He rescheduled for tomorrow morning.
We invited the Lees and Koellikers for dinner. But while we were eating, Brother Navaues called and asked if the Koellikers could meet him at the store tonight in about ½ hour from the time he called. So we quickly finished eating and the Lees took the Koelliker to the store while we cleaned up.
Thursday, July 14, 2016
We spent the day with the Koellikers shopping and moving things to Esteli. We are spending the night at the Hotel Hex in Esteli, the only building with carpet that we have seen in Nicaragua. We moved some small items into the Koellikers duplex and visited with the owners. They are an older couple who has lived in Los Angeles for many years. They are a delight to visit with and very accommodating.
Our Brazilian Missionary got out of the hospital with no restrictions or medications. He is back in Chichigalpa working. A tender mercy….
Friday, July 15, 2016
This morning we found out that the Koellikers furniture will not be delivered today as planned. So we talked them into going to Ocotal with us to deliver a package to Elder Baltimore, one of the District Leaders. He had told the Lee’s it was very important. We also wanted to show the Koellikers some of the country, as the drive to Ocotal is one of the most beautiful parts of Nicaragua. On our way we stopped in Condega to deliver a post card to Elder Scaggs. Then we found Elder Hirschi, the zone leader, with Elder Baltimore in Ocotal.
When we got back to Esteli, we went to the bank, Claro (internet) and Rosti Polli for lunch. Every time we have eaten there, a young waitress has been our server. Her name is Klely. She is married to Luiz and has a little girl named Brittany Natalie. She was so glad to see us again today, she came up and gave us all hugs… even me. After lunch, Michelle gave her a pass along card. She asked when the church meetings were. We told her her ward started at 9am but that there was another ward that began at 2pm, in case she had to work in the morning. We called the sister missionaries and asked them to watch out for her.
The traffic in Managua was terrible, the worst I have seen since being here. However, the sunset and electric trees were beautiful. Several of the main streets in Managua are lined with these trees.
Saturday, July 16, 2016 (Michelle)
I would like to share a miracle that happened this week. I know that Heavenly Father watches over each of us and that he knows our needs very personally and that he cares about what happens to us.
At 4:00 am on Saturday an elder called us. He was in horrific pain and said that his shoulder was dislocated. I said, “What?” He said that before the mission he had injured his shoulder and it had been dislocated and repaired in the hospital. Previous to the mission the shoulder had dislocated, but he had always been able to put it back in place himself. This morning, he had tried, but he felt like it was swollen and he didn’t know what to do. He asked if I could do something to help him. As I tried to clear the sleepiness from my head, my heart dropped to my toes when he told me he was in Puerto Cabezas. It is clear across the country on the eastern coast and the only hospital is a public facility that is a frightening nightmare to say the least. You go there never knowing if you will get out alive. I told him I needed to call our medical adviser in Guatemala and that I would call him back.
I telephoned Elder Lynn and explained the situation to him. I naively asked him if he could call and talk the elder through the relocation process and he chuckled and said that the person performing the action needed a much higher skill level than a missionary companion and a doctor specializing in pregnant women. He then wished me good luck and we hung up.
Elder Bell and I knelt at the bedside and I talked to our Heavenly Father. In plain language I explained the situation to him – an elder in extreme pain, the problem of extreme distance for transport, and a hospital from an Alfred Hitchcock movie. We asked for wisdom in our suggestions to this elder and His help to provide care for the elder. We both immediately felt that he should go to the hospital, which surprised us both.
I called Sister Poncio to discuss the situation and to ask for her permission to send the elder to the hospital in Puerto Cabeza. After listening, she said that we really had no other choice and gave her permission.
I called the elder back and said, “I can’t believe that I am saying this to you, but we believe the best course of action is to send you to the hospital.” I then gave him some cautions about refusing anything he did not feel good about and that I felt strongly that he should have a priesthood blessing. We then hung up.
For the next two hours I lay in bed and prayed that our elder would come in contact with people that could help him and that his pain would be minimal.
About 6:00 we got up and I called the elder. He did not answer. His companion had his phone. He said that the elder was sleeping like a baby. They had given him IV sedation, reduced the dislocation, and put him in a sling-brace and he was totally comfortable. He had to wear the brace for the next eight days and then he would be fine. He was to take Ibuprofen for the pain and I suggested that he wear the brace when he sleeps for the next 6 weeks.
Just the right kind of doctor “happened” to be at the hospital that the elder needed. He was able to receive good care and in a very short time, at a place where I never dreamed that could happen. Happenstance? I think not. Our prayers were answered and a missionary who was doing his best to serve was given a miraculous blessing. My testimony is that our Heavenly Father watches over us with the loving care of a parent and that he will intervene in our behalf when we have the need. I thank Him for his love and care.
Sunday, July 17, 2016
We woke up this morning wondering where we should go to church. We have been in the north so much that we feel alittle lost. We could have gone to Jinotega, about 3 hours drive from home to deliver medicine and talk to a perspective missionary that I have been helping, but we just didn’t feel very good about that. So we looked on a map and found a church not far from us, that we hadn’t been to. The ward was Los Laureles. Google Map said it would take 30 minutes, so we left 45 minutes early, following the directions very carefully. However, we found a large wall built across the road we needed to take. We were stuck. It was getting close to 9am and we knew we couldn’t go around and make it in time. So out of frustration, we found the closest chapel and headed for it. We got there right at 9am. It was the Shick Ward in the Villa Flor Stake. We walked in and it was apparent they had already begun, which surprised us because none of the meetings start on time. We sat in front of Elder Lopez and Elder Boche, the two missionaries assigned to the ward. They leaned forward and told us they started at 8am. We were disappointed we missed the sacrament but they also told us there was another ward that started at 10am. We went to the gospel essentials class taught by the Elders and then went to the Rene Polanco Ward.
The Elders in the Rene Polanco Ward were Elder Garcia and Elder Zeron. None of the four Elders we knew very well, so it was good to attend to get to know them better. They confirmed a lady who had been baptized the day before. After the confirmation, she sat down all by herself so Sister Bell and I went and sat next to her. Afterward, we went to Gospel Essentials and again sat next to her. Then Sister Bell went to Relief Society with her. At the end of the meetings, the newly baptized sister asked if Sister Bell was going to be in their ward again next week. She was disappointed when Sister Bell told her no. We helped a newly baptized member enjoy her first Sunday as a member and made a friend in the process. We had just found out why we were lead to the Rene Polanco Ward.