Saturday, February 9, 2013
Feb. 6th & 7th - PEF Evaluation
We returned to P.E. for 3 days to process PEF applications and two renewals. Both Toise's have been approved for loans. Tom is with them getting their paperwork signed. He spent three hours at the bank waiting for Sister Thomdaza Toise yesterday to set up a new account. Evidently the bank cancelled her old account since she had not used it for some time. Sister T. waited in one line to deposit 50 Rand only to discover that her account had been shut down. So she went upstairs to open a new account and had to wait for another 45 minutes there. Then came down stairs and waited in another line to deposit the money. Tom noticed that her nursing school had failed to write her name on the tuition quote. Knowing that JoBurg would insist that her name appear on the quote, he drove to the nursing school. There are only three openings left for classes that begin in March. Since it's first come, first served and Sister T. had not taken the English proficiency test, Tom left this morning at 6:00 a.m. to take her back to the college. Michael, her husband, has not completed his on-line application as the computer at the ward is down. So they will do that while Sister T. takes her test. Normally all this is done by the students. Tom simply has them sign paperwork. However the Toise's have no transport so it's more efficient to simply drive them to places they need to go. Last night Elder S. processed renewals for Stuart & Bradley Chamberlain. As the 2013 school year has begun we have more PEF work with several inquires, a few application and renewals.
Yesterday we had a conference call with our bosses in Jo Berg and the PEF couples throughout the region. When asked how things were going in Port Elizabeth, I followed President Woods advice and told them. I said that when we arrived in Port Elizabeth in March the school year had already begun and there was very little for us to do. The stake president told us that "they already had their program in place." He had assigned teachers in all the ward to teach the workshops. He suggested that we could cover the firesides throughout the stake--approximately seven each year. We assisted with the workshops as needed but that did not keep us very busy. Consequently we were putting in about 7 hours a week rather than the 35 required for full time senior service.
We did every thing that was expected of us including traveling to Knysna and Grahamstown. Since there are no young adults in the George or Port Alfred we did not do firesides in those branches. We spent the month of September presenting firesides in the East London Stake before we discovered that the church is paying Brother Gary Human and Malita Chamberlain, to run the program up there. When we met with the Cape Town Stake President in November, we were told they "did not know how they could use us." Consequently from March through the end of November, we put in very few hours doing PEF. Even with service projects and Elder care, this is far short of the time normally assigned most senior couples. I said that we had only generated a hand full of PEF loans and that if we were working for a bank we would be fired. Brother Khumbalani thanked me and explained that the PEF program is in transition. About that time we could hear hammering in the back ground. Khumbalani asked Mendela what was happening? So I piped up and said, "It's Salt Lake remodelling the PEF program. Everyone laughed.
Brother K called the next morning to confide that my report had "hurt his heart." He had not known. Tom told him that we are busy now and enjoy fulfilling both our PEF assignment and the member service work in Grahamstown. I am glad I followed the advise of President Wood. He told me to speak up. Our mission president is a retired judge. A defence attorney taught him to "Have a firm grip on the obvious and then, make the obvious clear!"