I know it has been a while since I updated the blog. We have been SO BUSY. The other office couple have gone now and the workload has increased (as we knew it would). We are not complaining, mind you. We came on a mission to serve and expected to be busy. When I get home from the office, I am too tired to blog.
Life has been going along at an even keel with nothing extraordinary to share.
Dave (Elder Sutton) serves as the Financial Secretary. He is responsible for making sure that our 130 missionaries have their cards funded so they can pay their rent, he conducts audits around the mission (which I remind you, is the size of US) He is also the Executive Secretary to the Mission President and these two with the myriad responsibilities thst come with it keeps him VERY busy. He is the OFFICE MANAGER. His phone is ringing constantly with an elder here who has lost his card and it needs to be replaced, or a set of young sisters call whose refridgerator has broken down and the landlady won't fix it. What to do? MY RENT DIDN"T SHOW UP ON MY CARD and my landlord is bugging me! HELP! These are things he deals with on a regular basis. Some are more urgent than others. Emergency visits to the doctor requires reimbursement, or, in some cases, missionaries who don't budget well and run out of rubles before the end of the month. Elder Sutton deals with all of this
Do you remember me mentioning that we are dealing in a cash only society here? Money is funded to the companionships (younger missionaries) and then they draw off the rubles to pay for rent, or go to the grocery store and so on. Sometimes they don't have enough money to get through the end of the month.
My husband as of late has also been going into the mission office on Saturday mornings to play catch up. We haven't made it to English Group of Senior Council for the last two weeks. Service in the office takes precedence over everything else.
And then there's me. Sister Sutton. Office secretary. I answer the phone. I have people hang up on me because I can't understand Russian very well. I speak it better than I understand it. And I don't speak it very well! I take care of the missionaries before I even meet them. When word comes in thtat they are coming there are folders to make up for each missionary which consist of several steps. There are our returning missionaries who need airfare arranged for them (and many other things). I have plenty to do to keep myself busy.
I perform secretarial duties for my husband as well and make phone calls for him .When there is a letter that President Sorenson needs written, he brings me and dictates to me. He learned that I used to be a stenographer and so here I am 40 plus years later, taking letters in shorthand! WOW.
I am VERY grateful for our wonderful office elders who are very computer savvy. They teach me new things on the computer and answer my questions. And also Deeona, our visa clerk, who handles all the passport and visa issues (of which there are many here in Russia - along with our office elders)
Other more interesting responsibilities to follow. Dos Vidonya.