Hogsback Mountain

Hogsback Mountain
Hogsback Mountain Wilderness

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Amazing Tender Mercies in SA

Mdantsane is a very large township near East London in which we do most of our work.  We spend a great deal of time there visiting new members or looking those who have lost the flame of their faith.  We have learned to be comfortable in the web of streets (none have street signs) and often walk into unexpected surprises.  Recently, we were looking for a less active member and opened the gate to a pre-school (they call them a "creche" here).  The children came running and swarmed around me.  It made me feel so much at home to spend a few minutes with these children, but it grieves me to see the conditions in which they play.
Mdantsane Neighborhood Creche

Last week we were able to craft a handrail out of an old broke bed for Brother and Sister Magibisela.  They recently joined the church and are rather frail so they needed support getting up and down the stairs in their home.  It was tons of fun to get our hands dirty with a bit of sawdust and some woodworking.  Keep in mind that these people lived with the tyranny of apartheid and yet we have become sweet friends within the frame of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Handrail for the Magibisela's

Occasionally we have the opportunity to participate with a group of Young Single Adults who meet for a family home evening.  We had challenged them to a game of scripture trivia and they certainly held their own. We had a wonderful evening filled with laughter and fellowship.  Several of these young people join us during our evening visits and are always willing support our efforts.  Since they are about the age of our kids, we treat them like they were one of our own.
Family Home Evening with our adopted Kids

The most amazing thing happened to Elder Fowers this past week.  He had gone on an errand to King William's Town (about 45k) to deliver some furniture and I had stayed home recovering from a procedure on my shoulder.  While there, he decided to drop by an old, unkept cemetery located near the center of town.  The center piece of this cemetery was a large monument to the soldiers who had died in the Frontier Wars.  As he was casually looking down the list of names, out jumped the name..."J. Fowers" who had died in battle 23 March 1852.  Now, in Utah Fowers is a pretty common name, but no other place that we have lived have we ever run into another Fowers. He took a double take and couldn't believe what he was seeing.  Could it be that we are not the first Fowers to set foot on the soil of South Africa?  He has been earnestly researching trying to figure out how that "J. Fowers" links with our J. (Clarke) Fowers. 

Elder J. Fowers finds long, lost relative...J. Fowers

First Fowers in South Africa?
This is how we often end our day--viewing another beautiful sunset out of our patio window in Gonubie, South Africa.


  1. I love reading about the many wonderful things the two of you are experiencing! Know that you are in my prayers every day. I print off your other letters and post them to Matthew as well. He is doing wonderful. From the private mail he sends to us, we know he has had challenges ...but growth, spirituality and understanding what our savior wants him to learn have been his as well. We are ever grateful for him and the experiences he is having. We are most grateful for your influence on Matthew, and how positively that has effected his life. May the Lord bless you both, and keep you in His watchful care!
    Love, Janice

  2. Wow! Amazing find! Great to hear from you. We are well here. Muriel is doing gymnastics. Madeleine is too and also taking piano from her kindergarten teacher, Mary Chen. Both are enjoying all. I continue to delve into the charter world, having entered the UCLA Extension certificate program in charter management. Frauke is still enjoying the travel world, but looking forward to moving into the full-time mom world soon.

    All the best,


  3. Oh and just started working on a Discovery Channel series on the historical Jesus. Very fascinating!