We helped celebrate the opening of seven new R.O. Clean Water systems in the villages of Nalgonda, Bibi Mandel, Telangana State.
Elder Henrie is cutting a ribbon.
A Hindu priest was present to ensure traditional blessings took place.
We each received a red dot on our foreheads, flower leis and colorful shawls to honor us.
Two students from a local high school spoke about how they had been worried about the sickness caused by high fluoride in the water and their future families. But now that the clean water is there, their future is brighter.
Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) Mr. Reddy holds the ribbon as Elder Newton cuts it at the opening of a new clean water system.
Part of the tradition is to crack open a coconut and pour out the milk.
Elder Henrie, Elder Newton and MLA Reddy do the deed.
Part of the Hindu tradition is to light oil wiks.
This was at a high school and the Principal thanked us for participating in and honoring their traditions.
Children, school staff and the community look on at the RO Celebration. M. Julius, a teacher at the school for 6 years said "Healthy water, healthy life--you gave us living water. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a good name because you are saints to us."
Sister Henrie especially liked making contact with the children where ever we went
We presented the school with cricket bats and balls, jump ropes, ring toss and soccer balls.
We were invited inside a Hindu temple to participate in their Hindu blessing. We were blessed and our children were blessed by the priest.
Sister Newton spoke to the crowd of about 200 people. She said in Telugu "Namaste, na peru Sister Newton." (Good afternoon, my name is Sister Newton). MLA Mr. Reddy almost fell out of his chair with delight and the crowd cheered! [Thanks to Mike and Laura for the "Learn Telugu in 30 Days" book!]
A young girl from Zilla Parishad High School said: "You fill me with happy to have clean water."
More joy and celebrating.
More shawls and leis to honor LDSC.
Sooo many ribbons to cut...
The women of the villages were excited to know they will have clean water to drink and cook with as they feed their families.
The press and local television news people were present also. Here is a pile of five newspaper articles in the local newspaper the next day.
Youtube Link to TV interview at Zilla Parishad High Shool