Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Hello everyone.  On Monday, October 19, 2015 it was Reeds 64th Birthday.  We went to work as usual.  We had training most of the day with Elder and Sister Henderson to turn over the ITEP Coordinator position to them.  Michael Carthew, the new Assistant to the Area Director over Church Schools was here and he was involved with some of the training since he is new as well.  Actually Reed and I have been involved with ITEP more than anyone else here in the Pacific at this time. 

Our office on the ground floor, Self-Reliance/Education/Welfare had a birthday morning tea for him.  We had some really good food there along with a birthday cake.  Then we had lunch with Seminary and Institutes along with birthday cake.  He was spoiled with well wishers.

We were also able to Skype with all the kids which is the best gift of all.

I bought Reed, Neil Diamond, tickets and the concert was on his actual birthday.  We drove Elder and Sister Preator, new public relations missionaries with us and met Elder and Sister Fugal and Art Edson and his wife De at Dos Amigos for dinner.

We had mentioned we were celebrating his birthday and when we got up to pay the bill they told us to sit back down.  They brought these four churros with hot fudge chocolate to dip them in and sang Happy Birthday to Reed.
Reed celebrating his birthday at Dos Amigos a pretty good Mexican Restaurant!

We then headed to the Vector Arena in downtown Auckland to the Neil Diamond concert.   We have never seen that many old people all in one place at a time.  The excitement in the air was contagious.  It was interesting because Nada sat next to a lady that was a member of the church.  She was fun to talk to and the manager of public relations at the Area Office used to be her Bishop.  Small world!
They were having people tweet in.  We were saying let's go Neil as well.
We did not tweet but we were excited to be at a Neil Diamond concert in Auckland and it was AWESOME!

For a 70+ man he can still move around the stage and perform.  His band was so good.  When they did close ups of them most of them look as old as Neil Diamond.  They sure can perform. They were all very fun to watch.

He sang for 2 solid hours.  He sang some of his new songs and a lot of his oldie but goodie songs.

It was a very fun evening.  We are so grateful that Elder and Sister Fugal had purchased some extra tickets and offered them to us.  We enjoyed good company, good food and great music.  Reed said it was a very special birthday.

We have enjoyed having the Hendersons here.  They are a great couple and will do a good job.  We are still busy trying to train them and help them understand what needs to be done.  We are also trying to teach them about ITEP and TVET and what we expect from our missionaries serving at the different Church Schools.  We have really enjoyed staying involved with the ITEP program and will miss that part of this mission.  However, we are glad to only be doing one mission from now on.  We have started being really busy with our Education Specialist Mission now that we are getting other couples called to come and serve here in the Pacific.  We are trying to train them and write booklets, do workshops and devotionals.  Life is busy but that is good.  We hope we can make a difference.  The Gospel is true and we are grateful to be serving here in Auckland, New Zealand in the Pacific Area Office.  We have learned a lot and rubbed shoulders with some great leaders.  We are well and trying to do what The Lord wants us to do.  Until next time.  Love Elder and Sister Spencer (aka Reed and Nada)



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