Sunday, April 10, 2016

Week 5 Report

What a perfect start to our 5th week. We watched General Conference live from the comfort of our apartment. Since we are 4 hours behind Utah, we watched it at 6:00 and 10:00 am. That meant we had the rest of the day to just enjoy the Sabbath. So, in the afternoon we decided to take a stroll along Ala Moana Beach and the marina. It's just a five minute drive from our pad.

Our apartment building is called the Banyan Tree Plaza because there is a huge, beautiful, old Banyan tree in front of it. It is home to a multitude of green birds called Rose-ringed Parakeets. I'm just mesmerized by this beautiful tree.You really can't appreciate its grandeur  in a photo. It's a true treasure.

We are beginning to feel like this is home. Driving in the city is getting easier and we're beginning to know the route to some of the frequent places we go. Most of our time is spent at the office and we still come home exhausted. This past week was a new experience with high winds. They were bad on the ground, but 15 stories up they are so magnified. Our windows are louvered glass panes on the front and back side of our pad, so the wind literally howls and whistles as it gusts through our pad. Needless to say, we had a couple of nights with scant sleep. The trade winds I love...but these high winds are something I've never experienced before.

We meet for church in a beautiful building called the Honolulu Tabernacle. It is the last tabernacle build by the church. Historically tabernacles were build to have a place where a large number of members could meet. The Honolulu Tabernacle's construction was begun in 1940 and completed in August 1941 at a cost of $300,000.00. World War II was raging, however the USA had not yet entered the fight. President David O. McKay, then second counselor in the First Presidency, gave the dedicatory prayer for the tabernacle. In that prayer he blessed the building that it would be safe from missiles. Three months later Pearl Harbor would be bombed by the Japanese. The tabernacle was lighted at night by a large tower which made it an easy target. The bombings damaged buildings near by, but miraculously no damage was sustained at the tabernacle. Today it is a building treasured by all the members of Hawaii.

This is a view of the tabernacle from our balcony. The large tower is attached to the original large chapel we meet in. The rectangular building attached to it is a second, smaller chapel and a gymnasium.

This is the inside of the large chapel. It is breathtaking, and the acoustics are amazing.

The building was recently renovated and these new doors were beautiful!

This is a pond and mosaic on the south end of the chapel. The mosaic is original to the building.

An arial view of the plumeria trees on the tabernacle grounds. The photo was taken from our balcony with the lens zoomed in.

Plumeria cluster on the tree.

We continue to feel incredibly blessed to be here. We love what we are doing and have met so many wonderful people. The highlight of our week was definitely listening to General Conference. We feel more comfortable with our mission routine and responsibilities, and I even taught Relief Society today. We are getting to know and love the members of the ward. They have welcomed us with open arms. We love the other couples we work with in the mission office and the young missionaries that drop by the office. Truly, our cup runneth over!

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