Concerned Women of Treeplanting.
The Concerned Women of Treeplanting asked me to write a few words for their big
celebration on the 29th of their "launching" of their association for another year. This
is the beginning of their 2nd year. I am not able to attend their celebration because our
area supervisor, John Buah, will be here from Accra, Ghana, the 26th to the 31st. We
have welfare training on the 29th. The following is what I submitted:
My dear Sisters of Treeplanting. It is with joy in my heart that I call you Sisters for we
are all children of God and you are my sisters. My name is Sister Carley and my
husband and I are humanitarian Missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter
Day Saints. Our home is in the United States of America and we are both retired. My
husband worked for 40 years in the telecommunications business and I worked for 26
years with the mentally handicapped. After we retired, we decided to raise goats for
food. We love to breed the nannies and to birth the babies. We have 3 children and 9
grandchildren. Our job as missionaries in Sierra Leone is to help communities become
stronger through basic needs such as water, sanitation, education and medical. At the
moment we are beginning two projects in Treeplanting. We are installing a hand-dug
bore hole and are working on a springbox in what is referred to as "Down the Hole".
We are investigating doing two more well projects in Treeplanting as well.
About 2 months ago Mrs. Blake, Mrs. Turay, and Mrs. Conteh visited me and shared
with me the constitution and desires of the Concerned Women of Treeplanting. I
studied their constitution and asked if I could attend one of the meetings that are held
at 5:30 every Sunday evening. It was very comforting to be part of that meeting. In my
Church we have a world-wide women's organization called Relief Society. Our goal is
very much like yours; to bring relief and comfort to the poor and needy. The President
of our Church, Thomas S. Monson, has often reminded us that we are "surrounded by
those in need of our attention, our encouragement, our support, our comfort, our
kindness - be they family members, friends, acquaintances, or strangers." He said "we
are God's hands here upon the earth, with the mandate to serve and to lift His children.
He is dependent upon each of us."
All of us can incorporate some service into our daily living. We live in a contentious
world. We give service when we don’t criticize, when we refuse to gossip, when we
don’t judge, when we smile, when we say thank you, and when we are patient and
kind. Other kinds of service take time, intentional planning, and extra energy. But they
are worth our every effort. What must we do? We must counsel together, use all
resources available, seek the inspiration of God, ask for His confirmation, and then roll
up our sleeves and go to work.
There is a hunger among many women in the world to be valued and to find purpose
for their energies. We have a lot to offer those around us and being able to be
associated with a women's group can be very fulfilling. Not only for helping those
who are in need but to help with our own feelings of self-worth. There is so much
satisfaction and feelings of joy associated with truly helping someone in need. The
added benefit of belonging to a group of women who are all focused on the same goal
is the friendship that is developed between each other. Women NEED women. Every
woman needs a female friend. Someone she can talk to and share her most private
thoughts and feelings. Someone she can trust, laugh with, cry with, and just be herself
with knowing she is accepted for being just the way she is. That is what being part of a
women's organization can do for you; to serve God by helping others, create new
friendships, and enrich your own life by using and developing your own talents and
skills while you are blessing the lives of other. I have come to know that it is through
love of God and neighbor that gives meaning to life.
I am so honored to have been asked to share a few of my thoughts this afternoon. I
am sorry I cannot be here to look into your beautiful faces.
My dear Sisters, may God Bless each of you with His choicest blessings.