A Gift of Eggs and Love
August 2002

“A Gift of Eggs and Love,” Ensign, Aug. 2002, 70–71

A Gift of Eggs and Love

I had been living for a few months in Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (then Zaire), Africa, when the branch Relief Society president asked if she could come visiting teaching. I realize now that she waited so long to visit so that I could have time to learn a little French with which to communicate. At that time our family was the only white family in the branch. Some of the women spoke French, but the majority spoke Lingala, a tribal language. Although I tried not to feel alienated because of my skin color and language, I felt very different from the sisters in my branch.

The Relief Society president was a widow with two sons. She was thin, not quite five feet tall, and always smiling a beautiful, big smile. When she arrived to visit me, she came accompanied only by the Spirit of the Lord.

After greeting me, this sister asked me to get my English Bible. She spoke very slowly so I would understand her message. We read in her French Bible, and then in my English one, Ephesians 2:19: “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God.”

I smiled as I read the verse she had chosen. In spite of our differences, she understood the struggles I was experiencing.

As she prepared to leave, this sweet sister presented me with a gift of 10 eggs. Many people in Zaire at that time ate only two meals a day, and many were starving.

I knew it was a struggle for her to feed her sons. I felt guilty accepting the eggs and tried to decline the gift. But her eyes told me it was given in love.

I accepted the eggs, and we basked in the love that she brought. It filled the house and made everything seem brighter. After a prayer with her, I watched her leave the yard, her petite and gracious form wrapped in African cloth. I no longer felt a stranger, but at home with the Saints of God.

  • Claudia Waite Richards is a member of the Kuala Lumpur Branch, Singapore Mission.

Illustrated by Brian Call