Sunday, October 28, 2012

Week 59

Dear Storm-ready Family and Friends, (and all others who do not live on the east coast),

Well I'll be darned!   Here we sit 30 miles from a live volcano, living along the ring of fire, with supposed terrorists in our back yard (we have no evidence of this), and there you are fortifying for the "perfect storm"!  I hope you will all be wise, and ready.  Joel fill the big tub with water, (lock the doors so Logan can't get in), and buy some for drinking, then go check out our camping gear.  We have A LOT of camping gear!!!!  We will be fine here in paradise.

THIS was the week that was!  On Monday Sister Knorpp and I made 45 loaves of mini-breads for Zone Conference.  We can get zucchini here (sometimes) and so we made banana, zucchini, and pumpkin bread.  We can't get canned pumpkin but there are tons of whole and pre-sliced small pumpkins.  So you just buy a piece and microwave it, scoop it out and WALLAH!  Yummy pumpkin.  There are around 33 who attended Zone Conference.  This conference was special because we had the Area President and his wife, Elder and Sister Watson.  As a side for my family, he is from Cedar City (as a child) and once lived near our little red brick house.  He remembers a bunch of people we remember, AND he is related to Dr. Rymal Williams, WHO delivered all of you but Emily and Joel.  HE LOOKS LIKE RYMAL WILLIAMS, so we asked if he knew him, and there you go!  We told him how dear Dr. Williams was to us.  Anyway, they were at Zone Conference on Tuesday, and he led us in a study of the Book of Mormon and the importance of that book in the conversion process.  (See Preach My Gospel chapter 5) It was an excellent conference, and the Spirit was very strong.  That evening we got Elder Watson and a couple of the A.Ps to the airport to return to Jakarta.  They'd had a crazy schedule.... Monday they were all (Elder and Sister Watson, President and Sister Groberg, and the A.Ps) in Surabaya, East Java. Monday evening they boarded a train and traveled to Solo, Central Java.  Tuesday a Zone Conference with us, then a plane ride to Jakarta, West Java.  Wednesday, Zone Conference in Jakarta, then Elder and Sister Watson flew back to Hong Kong!

I believe I mentioned last week that this week was the All Indonesia Young Single Adult Conference!  Now, I need to explain two things right here.  1).  Elder and I were part of the initial planning committee for the conference.  At the first meeting we were reminded again that we are "not in Kansas anymore, Dorthy".  They have a set of planning rules that are very different from, well, most of the world. However!, we did manage to get a DANCE on the agenda.  This was not readily agreed upon, but Brother Barita who was over all the activities for the conference also wanted a dance.  He attended BYU-Hawaii, so he knew!  WE HAVE NO IDEA WHEN or IF THEY HAVE EVER HAD A DANCE, however, after much persuasion the dance was IN!.... and we were in charge of it. 2).  The Indonesians call "their" time, Indonesian Rubber Time.  That means that NOTHING starts on time.  (Well, maybe Sacrament Meeting...but that's all!)  So the fact that they had a schedule for the events of the conference was kind of funny.

On Thursday we ran around getting the refreshments and the water for the dance.  There are no chips and mints here, so we had to find some "snacks" in large quantities.  Then we scooted on up to the conference.   It was held in a resort town, kind of the Park City of Indonesia, about an hour east of Solo, way up in the hills.  They booked an entire large motel for about 100 Young Single Adults.  When we got there they were running late, about 2 hours, because the Jakarta bus had not arrived.  They finally had the opening meeting and lunch, and sat around until the bus came, and then they had some "getting to know each other" activities the Knorpps had planned.  These were great ideas, but they only got to play 2 of them and then the chairman said it was enough.  Hmmm............  So we scooted back to Solo.  That night they had a talent show, which is a large part of any youth activity they have.

Friday morning we went to the airport and fetched President and Sister Groberg, those good souls.  They had Just left us 2 days before, but returned because the Conference committee asked him to take 15 minutes!  It was so funny, that morning the President got a call from the Solo Stake President assuring the President that he was scheduled to speak about 11:00 a.m.  That call ended as Sister Groberg received a call from Elder and Sister Seiters (Sr. couple there from Surabaya) who called to let the President know that his talk wasn't even on the agenda, and that all they knew was that their "Speed Dating" Activity at 11:00 a.m.  We laughed all the way up the mountain.  He did speak, and they did do the Speed Dating activity, we did eat lunch, and then the YSAs took a huge hike, all off schedule... but hey!  FINALLY!!!!! at 7:00 p.m. the dance began.  Please remember that these 18 - 35 year old were not familiar with dances or dancing.  THEY WERE SOOO EXCITED!  But...... it was like getting Deacons and Beehives to start moving.   Oh my!!!!!  You have these two 60 some-odd year old missionaries "rocking out"  trying to get people moving.  Brother Barita had agreed to get the music for the dance.  Finally last Monday he just gave us some Back Street Boys, and N'Sync.  So we went to Elder Greenway's "store" on his computer. We then spent a bunch of time recording music, and planning the night, and the music was older but great. (ABBA, Credence Clearwater Revival, Duran Duran, Frank Sinatra, etc)  Sooooooooooooo finally, finally they started to move.  We taught them to slow dance, (1 - 2 - 3 quick, quick); a western line dance (a simple Cowboy Boogie); and the Virginia Reel (amazing)! But the song that got them alllllll up, allllll moving, allllll singing was Y-M-C-A!!!!!!   After about 30 minutes the dance began to resemble any of the about 144 Stake dances I've attended.  We felt like new proud parents!   What a night!  The dance was to go to about 10 p.m., however after the Virginia Reel Marathon, (with their afternoon hike added on) they were bagged!!!!!  So we called it a night about 9:30, with a very happy but exhausted group of youth and a VERY happy and exhausted Elder and Sister Greenway.  We haven't moved that much since college!!!!!!!!!

Today in Church everyone was talking about it.  Now they are even talking about a Christmas dance!!!!  We feel like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.  I'm sure that this week will pull us back down to earth, but we sure had a bunch of fun.  We'll be watching the computer to see how the storm goes, and "looking" out for you.  Back in '94, (doesn't that sound like and ol' timer to you) we had about 4 feet of snow in 12 hours.  We had so much fun being stranded, but! we were safe.  So we'll be praying for your safety, and that goes for our westerners, too.  We love you all, and suggest you all get up a dance a bit.  Wow!  Good exercise.........good fun......good kids!

Your nimble, if not graceful,
Elder and Sister Greenway

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Week 58

Dear, Dearest Family and Friends,
First of all, What kind of mother forgets to announce the Birthday of her third (I know, I know, the middle child thing), and by his own admission, most perfect child! Last Sunday was Matt's birthday, and we did talk to him, but I did not announce it to the whole world. We won't talk about how old he is because it makes me feel old. Now, this Sunday is Emily's birthday, she is NOT a middle child, but she is also quite perfect!!! And since she is the eldest of our children, we would never admit to her age. It is very nice that 4 of our children decided to have birthdays just a week apart (the other 2 are in December)because their old mama's brain can use all the help it can get! Happy Birthday to you two perfectly wonderful children!!!! I also received a birthday present this week. Now, my birthday is the first of August, and before that Widap asked Elder to confiscate one of my blouses because she and the Catur family wanted to have a Batik blouse made for me that matches a Batik shirt they had made for Elders birthday. (Tailored clothing is very inexpensive here). So, I gave him one I don't wear to often, which was wise.... because this week they presented me with my gift. I wore it to church today and Widap, Monique, and Yvonne were sooooo excited. They had me model it for their mom and family. They are soooooooooooooo fun!!!!!
Second, we would like to thank all those who have been praying for Boyalali! Kini and Markini are still doing wonderfully, and now Elders Yim and Mendrofa have an investigator who was introduced to the church a while ago, in fact she used to ride a neighbor's bicycle an hour to come to Solo to church. Then the neighbor moved, so she became lost. But the Elders happened on to her while looking for someone else. She came running down the street after them!!! THEN, last week an investigator from Solo told Elders Fisher and Suryono that he had shown some friends his Book of Mormon and they were very interested, 8 of them ALL from Boyalali. We are looking into how to manage all this, because they would all have to ride a bus to get to church here in Solo. But it seems as if the Lord is very interested in that beautiful little community. We had to change our day for taking the missionaries there because Preparation Day was changed from Wednesday to Monday. So now we have Thursday as our Boyalali Day. It may be that the Elders will have to take a bus there, or have just one set have a Boyalali Day. We can't fit 3 sets in our car! Anyway, we will have some heavenly help solving these problems, we are sure. Thank you again, there has been a lot of prayers and fasting for these people. We love them!
Months ago, we began a project to clean up the Young Single Adult Roles for the 4 Wards in Solo. All four wards ended up with a list of 15 or so people each that we gave to the Wards for rescue because they were married. We have been working with the Young Missionaries to find these young marrieds and see what is going on. Some have been gone since they were children, and are attending other churches. Some are tentative, but a few have opened their doors. We have also been working with members "who know", to find out locations and histories on some of these names. It has been an interesting week in that regard. We are so grateful for our glorious Solo missionaries. We have been hearing about how the Missionary Age Announcement at General Conference has changed the lives of prospective missionaries here in Solo, and in the families of the missionaries serving here. It has not affected the Young Men in Indonesia, Indonesian Elders were already serving at 18. But it will affect the Sisters.
This week Elder Greenway was part of a teleconference from SLC concerning PEF. It was held at 7:00 a.m. our time on Thursday. He learned there will be some major changes in the PEF Program in the coming year. Afterward, he and I talked about Pres. Hinckley's vision of this amazing program. These new changes will definitely build on that vision. One of the announcements made was to strongly encourage the Native Missionaries in foreign countries to diligently learn English, before, during, and after their missions. PEF workers have found that in foreign countries those who know English are more likely to be hired to most positions, than those who do not know English. In our mission, the English Elders are paired with the Indonesian Elders. It is mutually beneficial. I imagine it is like that all over the world. We are so grateful for PEF. It is working well in Solo. We have many new students attending University. We are so blessed to have Prophets and Apostles to show us the way to better lives. We will be attending an All Indonesian Young Single Adult Conference this next Thursday - Saturday, and Zone Conference with the Area President on Tuesday. We are all so blessed to have the gift of the Gospel in our lives. We'll be anxious to report in our next letter.
Finally, we just returned from the YM-YW/YSA Choir Practice tonight. That is the reason the letter is late getting out. I think I told you we are Singing three songs: "Because I Have Been Given Much", "Gethsemane", and "I'll Go Where You Want Me To Go"/"The Olive Tree" medley. We cannot find words to describe the feelings that come as we work with and enjoy the Spirit of these fine young Indonesians. All the songs are powerful, and they sing them with such thought, and take instruction so well. We just bask in their amazing "fine-ness" We have often wished you could be here to listen to their music. In the "Olive Tree" there is a moment when they sing "It's our time to serve and bring new life, to a waiting, waiting world in need." When they sing those words, "It's our time..." I just fill up with their glory, because it is their time. We talked about it, and they understand, and are doing their best to be ready. We are so blessed, we are so blessed!
Well, have a wonderful week!!!! We pray for you each day. We hope you will continue to remember Boyalali, and missionaries all over the world. Goodness sake October is almost gone.... time is flying by... toooooo fast! Take all the time you need to love one another.
Happy Birthday Golden Girl,
Elder dan Sister Greenway

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Weeek 57

To all of the pumpkin lovers we know, let it be known (because Joel said) "The Frost is on the Pumpkin, the frost is on the Pumpkin!!!!" (thank you Joel, that was sooo "fall" of you :)

Oh my goodness! Where to begin.... We have definitely been on a learning curve this week. When you enter Indonesia, you must apply for and receive and "kitas", which allows you to move around the country and be legal. It is good for one year, while our visas are good for 23 months. We have actually been living here illegally since Sept. 28 because the computers at immigration were messed up.

 Last week we found out that everything was up and going and we were to go to Jakarta to renew our kitas. We left Wednesday morning and arrived there about noon, then waited and hour for a taxi to Senopati, (the Mission Home). The traffic is like nothing you have ever seen. While there, we read an article in the newspaper that said that by 2014 the traffic will come to a complete standstill in Jakarta if so many miles of new roads are not built by then. We thought it was already at a standstill.....It took us longer to drive to the Mission Home than to fly to Jakarta. But we did get there around 2:30 p.m. and then Elder and Sister Seiters, Elder and Sister Kepler, Elder and Sister Healy, Elder and Sister Beaman, and President and Sister Groberg and we all had lunch. The Seiters and Keplers were also there to renew kitas.

We stayed until Friday afternoon. We enjoy these other couples and are so grateful for their example. They are all marvelous people. Our kitas appointment was not until Friday morning, so on Thursday we ventured to the oldest Museum in Indonesia, a beautiful old building built by the Dutch in the 1700s (John you would have loved all of this), and filled with artifacts ranging from the skull of the "east Java man" (for all you anthropologists), to ancient Chinese Ming dynasty vases, to Hindu Gods and Goddesses. I can't even begin to tell you how interesting it was. Our guide, Sis. Paul, is an ex-pat. who had lived in Jakarta once before, and was back for her second dose. Her husband works for Conoco/Phillips and they have raised their four children all over Asia. They are now grown, so she decided to take classes and learn to be a guide. She was delightful. THEN WE WENT TO LUNCH AT CHILI'S AND ELDER GREENWAY GOT A STEAK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now all is right with the world.

We also went to the gorgeous monument, the Monas, which is like their "Statue of Liberty". Inside the huge base, there are about 50 large dioramas depicting Indonesian history from the time of the "east Java man to Indonesia's Independence. Elder and I got to study these well while the others stood in line and rode to the tippy - tippy top of the monument. For those who don't know, Elder Greenway has a complete aversion to heights. I was thrilled because I was more interested in the history than the view. We now have a complete admiration for the valiant lives of early Indonesians. They have fought and fought and fought for their independence. It seems between the Chinese, Portuguese, Dutch, Japanese, Dutch/English, and Communists that someone has always wanted these beautiful islands. Courageous is probably the best adjective, then wise and patient are close behind. There just isn't room to tell you everything, but suffice it to say we are so proud of these lovely people.

On the second evening, while we were at Senopati, we received word via Emily that Joel and Rebekah had been advised by their pediatrician to take Little Jane Anne, just a week old, to the emergency room. She was vomiting green bile, and to quote Pres. Groberg (in his before life he was a pediatrician), "that is not good". Grampa Elder asked for everyone there to please pray for her. Dear Sister Kepler suggested that we do so right then, and so President and Sister Groberg, the Keplers, the Seiters, and the Greenways knelt together and kind President prayed for our Jane Anne. We asked Emily to please let us know as soon as she knew anything even if it were the middle of the night. (This time difference thing is a pain.) Around mid-night we got the call that everything had checked out, but that she had lost some weight, so they suggested a few things and now have her under the watch of the family doctor. WHEW! PLUSSSS..... When we got home we found out Sara's boy, Andrew, had fallen and seriously konked his head!!! Another trip to the emergency room, but more blessings. He is also doing just fine! We have felt tremendous blessings this week. We have known, and we have surely told you countless times, that we are more than blessed to be on this mission, to be healthy, to have the means to be here, and especially to be in Surakarta, Indonesia! Oh my, how we love the Lord.

On that note I will mention General Conference. We see it a week late here. On Saturday the wards meet in the two buildings at 10:00 a.m for Sessions 1 & 2. At about 3 p.m. the Priesthood session and Relief Society broadcasts begin. Their Young Women stay for the Relief Society Broadcast. The interesting part of this... most Indonesians have a 6 day work week, and all Indonesian children go to school on Saturday. So at 3 p.m. there were YM & YW all seated in their school uniforms to watch those 2 broadcasts. Today, we started at 8 a.m and ended about 1 p.m. Then one ward had their children stay for a Primary Sacrament Meeting Program practice. At 4:00 p.m. the youth from Solo 1 and we will practice for their part in Ward Conference, and at 5:00 p.m. is the Stake Youth and YSA Choir practice for Stake Conference. We don't need to tell you about General Conference. I'm sure you all were there to partake of that feast. Just in case you had some very important reason to miss any portion (say an earthquake and your power was off), please take the time to view and read and study anything you might have missed. President Monson asked that we do that anyway, so we'll all be doing the same thing.

Just one thing..... In case you don't know..... Elder Greenway and I have a great love for our children. Every day it grows. We can see now some greater eternal perspectives that we have come to recognize. We apologize for those things we surely could have done better. We know each of you will be better parents because you will have learned from our mistakes. You are the "noble and great ones" raising the"noble and great ones" who will usher in the coming of the Lord. We are better people because we know and love you, just as you will be better knowing and loving those priceless spirits in your family who have been reserved for this time. We were told many times today how families must work together. We were told it isn't enough anymore to just go along. We must hold Family Home Evening. We must be reading the scriptures together. We must pray and council together as families because Satan surely wants you to fail. We will be working and praying harder in your behalf, we pray that you will take this council seriously. We love you beyond measure...

Mom and Dad

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Week 56

What an odd week...

Once upon a time there was a girl. She was a determined soul, and a master planner. Her name was Emily. Years ago she met a young man. He was a determined soul, and a dutiful planner. His name was Ty. When Emily met Ty, she masterfully planned their courtship. "Ty," she said, "What are you doing this week?" "Oh," said a shy, but determined Ty, "I have something every night except Thursday." "Great!" said Emily, "How about going dutch to a movie with me on Thursday!!!" "Okay...???" said dutiful (and polite) Ty, and the rest is History.

Now... fast forward to October 5, 2012. Emily and Rebekah, sisters-in-law, have been masterfully planning for a week that Rebekah, who is ready to pop, must have her baby Friday night, while Emily, labor and delivery nurse, has a scheduled over-night shift. We won't even go into what has gone on during the week, but suffice it to say.... both girls were determined. So Friday evening, Joel wearily walks in the door from work only to see Rebekah with her packed bag, and packed up child, Logan, all ready to go. On that same evening, poor dutiful Ty walks in the door only to see the master planner waiting for him with a doozy of a master plan. So, to make a long story short..... Joel and Rebekah reached the hospital about 9 p.m., where her readiness to deliver was sanctioned by the powers to be, and on October 6, at 5:20 a.m. Jane Ann Greenway came into the world a hungry 9lb. 6oz. - 21 inch lovely girl......!!!

And all this was accomplished during The Master Planner's shift with time to spare. Oh, and about dutiful Ty.... He stayed home and took care of all the kids, including Logan, who adores him (but then what kid doesn't adore Ty). Rebekah and Jane Ann, Joel and Emily, Ty and Kids are all doing very well, thanks to determined planning. Gramma and Grampa are joyous and grateful!

Now, adding to our odd week. It started out normally enough, we made our usual pilgrimage to Boyalali to visit Kini and Markini, and now Markini's husband. They fed us lunch this week! Ayam (chicken), nasi putih (white rice), and some kind of greens that I don't know the Indonesian name for. They learned about fasting from the Sisters, and excitedly volunteered to fast this Sunday. So we agreed to fast for Boyalali, and for all the potential that is there. When we were leaving, I told them "Anda saya teman, dan saya mengasihi anda." (You are my friends, and I love you.) Then Markini, the Mother of Kini, told me she wanted to come to America with me. I said OKAY!!!! They are like family by now, and we love them so. Sister Neis had to tell them that it might be a long time before our church has a church in Boyalali. She told them they needed to learn well, and be strong, and hold on until things can happen. Markini said that there are many at the church they attend who want to know more about the wonderful church they tell them about. Kini's husband, who has not been religious, has started to attend the church there with her. So it is making a difference, they just need to hold on. We are all so very worried for them. It was a quiet ride home.

Tuesday we planned for piano, and other projects, and then headed to piano at Kapatihan. That is where we usually have 20 students. We had 3. Willi, Dinda, and Ricko came. We kept wondering what was going on. Then on Wednesday we had to have the A.C. in our apt. serviced and that took all morning. So then we headed to piano lessons and had 5 of the 15 show up. But we did find out that they were having testing in school, which I guess goes on and on. Then Thursday we went to Kantor Pos (the post office) to mail 4 Christmas packages home. Now the first Christmas package (it was the test package) we sent slow boat (literally), and it took 2 months. It also took 2 hours to get ready to mail. You walk in the building and they take the packages and weigh them, then you fill out a form, then you must take the box to customs who checks its contents, then you go outside where they sew it up into plastic, then you go back and it is weighed again, and then there is about 39 minutes of paperwork, then you pay, and then they staple everything to everything, then you can go. So we planned for at least 2 hours for 4 packages. It took one hour. So now we know, you get there early, and be there when there are 2 to sew rather than one. But because we were so fast, when we tried to call our appointment to go earlier, he wasn't home. So we scooted home to get the music ready for Stake Conference, and to let Elder work on the Senior Couple Conference.

Friday was DDM, a good sturdy DDM with lots of information and ideas flowing. Then we went to a "copy" place, where we had 150 copies made double sided for about $5. This was all the music for Stake Conference. Then we met with my young people who are going to play for me, Widap, Yos, and Agus. Then we headed for Gospel English where we had 3 out of 12 students. Hmmmmm......... So that is what I mean about an odd week. We were busy, but really didn't feel like we accomplished tooooooo much. This week will be better!!!!! Tomorrow night we have our first YW/YM - YSA Choir practice for Conference. Immediately following, we will have a Young Single Adult Fireside with our Stake President Budi Susanto speaking. That is the reason you are getting this early, because it will be late when we get home. Tomorrow will be Fast Sunday, our General conference is always a week late. So next week we will be at the Kapatihan Building Saturday and Sunday all day.

We know all you return Missionaries remember these kind of weeks. We are glad they don't happen too often. Our favorite part of the week is our time spent with the members, less active, and being out among the people. We just didn't accomplish that this week. Ahhh, time for better planning. HEY!!!!!!!! SOUNDS LIKE WE NEED A LESSON FROM A MASTER PLANNER!!!!!!

We just happen to know someone like that!
Much love and tender hearts for all our babies, 11 years old and on down;

Gramma and Grampa to 16 adored~!