LDS affirm `Lord's mindfulness of His servants'

As sunshine began to seep through a persistent and dreary drizzle on Nov. 1, the people of Central America began to sort through an endless vista of mud.

The deadly force of Hurricane Mitch's winds abated on Oct. 29, and then many people felt the worst of the storm was past. However, a second, also deadly punch, followed as rain continued to fall, rivers began to rise and bridges soon succumbed to a watery deluge.On the evening of Oct. 29, new convert Heidi Rodriguez, 18, of the Las Brisas neighborhood of Tegucigalpa and a member of Jardines de Toncotin Ward, did not seem worried, even though her family's home stood on the steep banks of the Choluteca River. She watched the river rise and subside through the night. The river had been sandbagged and if it became too high, she would climb the extra meters to stay with her aunt on higher ground.

But when she was contacted by telephone at her aunt's home on Nov. 1, Heidi said her whole family had barely escaped when their house and everything in it was swept away in the rush of rising waters. The young woman said her scriptures, personal papers and pictures were lost to the river.

On Oct. 30, missionaries in the coastal cities and island areas were transferred inland for safety. Other members were taken to LDS meetinghouses.

Pres. Roberto Ocampo of the Honduras Comayaguela Mission noted two occurences. First, when new furniture had been purchased earlier this year for Church facilities, a number of old furnishings had been replaced. Instead of being discarded, they were stored. These were used by those who stayed in the meetinghouses.

Second, Honduras received general conference live for the first time in October. One address by President Gordon B. Hinckley emphasized the need for provident living. This address so impressed Pres. Ocampo that he purchased a large supply of food to store at the mission home. This food is now feeding missionaries during a time of extreme scarcity.

"These two instances are proof of the Lord's mindfulness of His servants," said Pres. Ocampo.

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