Today the Jerusalem Branch of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had an activity helping to harvest olives on the Mount of Olives for the World Lutheran Federation. Lutherans run the Augusta Victoria hospital in the distance. Will's pre-school is also part of the complex. The Lutherans also own a large olive grove on a plot of land between Augusta Victoria and the BYU Center. The olive oil made from the olives harvested here is used as a gift to donors to the hospital. Apparently olive oil from the Mount of Olives is quite a donor draw. The hospital mostly serves the Palestinian community.
The view south along the crest of the Mount of Olives to the Russian Church of the Ascension.
Big tarps are placed under the trees.
Then we would comb through the branches with our hands or with large combs.
The branch children picked the low spots...
and the high spots. Will is joined by Branch President Okiishi--he and he wife are the Humanitarian service couple who oversee LDS charities.
The happy harvesters
Lunch in the shade of an olive tree. Marie did not join us. She was on an outing with the faculty wives who were escorting Sister Pat Holland (wife of Elder Holland) and Sister Porter (wife of Elder Bruce Porter) to some of Jerusalem's holy sites.
Joel picking twigs out of the olives
We worked for 2 1/2 hours. It was a lot of fun and will help a worthy cause.