I believe I have a solution.
1) ) REPLY to this post
2) Click on the INSERT PHOTOS (camera) above post
3) Insert the photo you would like as an avatar
4) Then post it
Once you post it, it goes through an approval process and adds it to your album
5) Then click on your avatar in upper right corner.
6) Select Settings
7) Then Avatars
8)_ Then MY ALBUMs........and you will see your pic
9) Make it your avatar
(I tried just placing the picture in the reply but not posting it, and it did not get added to
(The old instructions refer to something that is no longer a link on the profile page, so this is the only thing I could come up with)