Monday, December 30, 2013

Manga 20th Week - December 30, 2013

On P-day, due to Christmas, Shoprite was crazy. But P-day email rocked and we ate at our regular place. At 1500 we went to play soccer at a field that’s back way behind the church. It was super fun. We played with the Manga 3 elders and Manga 1 and Manga 3 youth. We ended up having about 26 people playing. My team won 3 to 1!

On the way home Elder Schachterle and I found what is I am pretty sure the only pay phone in Mozambique. We met with a family in our area and dressed up for a Nativity. We were able to read and talk about the birth of Christ.

Christmas Eve we had a crazy day. We had a couple of lessons and then went to Baixa to the Senior couples apartments for our Christmas Party. We were able to skype our families, ate awesome food, had a white elephant gift exchange and watched the Christmas Story. Skyping was so amazing! Getting to see and talk with everyone it felt like our 40 minutes lasted only 2 minutes. It went by so fast and it was so hard to hang up. I could have talked for hours! I love them so much! I did not want to quit the call. That part was hard. After the best part of Christmas (the skype home), we read the Nativity in Luke 2 and watched a clip from

Christmas Day I wore a brand new absolutely amazing tie I got from Bailee! I hope that this was the hottest Christmas I will ever have in my life. It was so hot. We were able to visit some of our investigators. We had not taught the Word of Wisdom yet and we were glad to find out that they do not have a problem with alcohol. It was such a good day. We met with another family and did the Nativity with them. It was awesome. The cherry on top of everything was visiting the T---- family, on the way home. I love them so much.

The day after Christmas was my six month mark. Time flies by! I still feel like I just stepped into Manga. It was a good day. During a lesson I got a call from the office elders. They had some good news and bad news. The good news is my Christmas package from my family was received. The bad news is due to how many packages they had for many missionaries, they were not going to be able to send my entire package. I had them open it and tell me about each item. Then I had to pick a few things for them to bring me. At least I know the package made it and I will get some of my things on the 31st and some at the next zone conference or if I am transferred south.

We had a really neat experience from one of the members. He text us “I have my call, I am at the church. I will be opening it in 20 minutes. We power walked there. He was so excited! Then came the moment of his opening. It was a bit odd hearing a call letter in Portuguese, but so cool at the same time. He will be serving in the Angola Luanda Mission. He will be reporting to the Brazil MTC in April. He was shaking so bad from happiness, nervousness and the spirit. He is going to be an awesome missionary!

Elder Galland and Lynn had a wedding on Saturday so my companion and I took bikes and went to pay the water bill. The place is the opposite way from the church building. We got there only to find out the place was closed on Saturdays. So we rode all the way back to the church. On the way I saw a car flipped over. I have no idea what happened. The wedding was good. We gave Elder Ensaldo and Cummings a ride home… on our bike. They sat on the rack on the back. It was so hard to ride with an extra person on the bike. But… we made it. We had a couple of lessons with some new families. I really like them and hope it works out for them.

On Sunday, church was so good and then we had a couple of lessons. We taught an amazing couple C------ and J----. They are awesome. J----- has such a great testimony. They accepted marriage and baptism! I hope I get to see that happen.



Monday, December 23, 2013

Managa 19th Week - December 23, 2013

Wow transfers! Northing changed in my companionship. Elder Schachterle and I will continue to live the dream in Manga 1B. It will be an awesome transfer. The last one of 2013! One sad thing, Elder Mason was transferred out of our house L But… the new zone leader is Elder Cummings and he’s in our house with the other zone leader, Elder Ensalado.

We got the bikes fixed so we ride them to church now and walk the rest of the way to our area.

Elder Kanaga say this is cabbage or lettuce (he was not sure how to tell them apart)
with potato, diced bell pepper, home made ranch and my Faux Hot Wings recipe.
I had a great contact this week. Two kids walked by with beer. I told them they should not drink it. They assure me all three bottles were for their Mom. They man standing next to me said “It’s bad for you”. He said he hadn’t smoked or drank his whole life. DING! “Oh really?” I asked. He replied “Since birth”. As we talked he was very accepting of the invitation to come to church and receive a visit. We will have to see how that goes on Saturday. It rained A lot this week especially that particular morning from 4am to 11am. Not that we experienced heavy lightening or house-shaking thunder or anything that would wake me from a dead sleep!
We got to teach the English class Wednesday. We started out by teaching colors. We did ROYGBIV. It was very successful (other than the I for Indigo). We didn’t know the Portuguese word for Indigo. Neither did anyone else, or our dictionaries for that matter. We just explained a little what indigo is and told them it wasn’t important. It was really fun to teach English. It was hard not to just speak Portuguese

We talked with C----- & N------- about their plans to go to the temple since they have been married and baptized for a year and a half. During that awesome visit, at about 1900 hours, it started raining. The rain got worse and worse. We got to the church where our bikes were. My front tire was low/flat we went through some deep puddles and our rain boots were literally full of water when we finally made it home. It was a crazy day but we had a good day with some good lessons.

It kept raining the next day and we had a lot of dropped lessons. For whatever reason, when the rain comes, people disappear. We did get a couple of lessons. At 1800 hours we had a meeting with the branch president. That was really good and we had an awesome lesson with the family of C------ & J----. It was just an awesome spirit. I really like this family and I really think I will see them married and baptized. I hope so at least.

This week we went to S---’s house to fix her roof because part of it was collapsed. We got there around 9-ish and started taking down the old roof. We put up the new one. It was nice and sunny for our 8 hour service project. To get the new roof up we had to build a ladder on the spot. But the roof is now really good. I hope now that when rain comes, none will enter their house. After the roof we went home and ate super quick then went out to the area. It wasn’t a fantastic day in the area but I’m not going to worry about it because we did have some awesome service that day.


We had a great lesson with N---- and F----. Sunday we had church and correlation meeting. Then we went to our Christmas Program. IT was good (for the second time). We read the Christmas Story with some families afterwards. It has been a good week.


Monday, December 16, 2013

Manga 18th week - December 16, 2013

Last P-day Elder Schachterle emailed and then went to get some rooftop city-scape pictures. At one building we had to hike up 20 or so flights of stairs only to find the roof access was locked. It was not in vain, we still were able to take a few really cool photos. We ate at our usual P-day traditional place, went shopping (where I found a pair of pants that fit for 15 met (about 50 cents US) and came home to rest. We went into our area and had a Family Night at C------- and J----- Home. It went well. We played “Do You Love Your Neighbor?” We also played a game “I have never”. On the way home we got a Belea that when they found out we were from the church, they started playing a Brazilian religious station. Funny enough the song “Grandioso Es Tu” (How Great Thou Art) came on, It was nice to listen to that.


Tuesday we were able to attend our branch mission prep class. It was a very good experience. We sung “Count your Blessings” and I was asked to give an impromptu spiritual thought.

I started feeling really bad during Wednesday studies. We went out to our area and I was not good during the day. I felt weak, and had a headache and stomach ache. When we got home I immediately went to bed. Thursday was the same. I wasn’t feeling really great but felt I could go out. Throughout the day I started feeling worse. Elder Schachterle needed to practice the piano for the Christmas program so I slept on the floor. On the way home, two big dogs jumped a wall and chased a person then jumped back over their wall. I hope they never do that to me. Upon getting home I went to bed straight away.  

By Friday I was feeling better but all of our lessons fell through. We were able to do some lessons with our recent converts so it was still a good day.


Saturday, we had a baptism. A day can’t start out better than that. We also were able to walk with J------ S--------- and were able to get some really good lessons in. We have two families we are teaching right now. In both families the husband wants the lessons but the wife is indifferent. But Saturday was different. In both of the families, the wives seemed enthusiastic.


I saw a cool thing. A man was walking down a path and I hear “Pai, Pai!” (Dad, Dad) and two little children come running down the path to greet their dad home from a day of work. How great is that!

It is G---, a Joven (youth) that walks with us, one year mark as a member. I made him a cake to celebrate. I also made an omlet but I need to work on the flipping part… After church on Sunday we had a quick lesson, made some contacts and went home for lunch which was a breakfast burrito. We then went to the Palmeiras chapel for the First Presidency’s Christmas Devotional! *ROCKED*. We sang and it was really good. I would have liked it better if I could actually sing but it was still great.

This is the close of a transfer. Three solid transfers and MTC done, wow, I am actually surprised how fast time is going.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Manga 17th Week – December 9, 2013

This transfer is flying by! I was so happy last weeks email went so smoothly. We went to the beach for pictures and were able to get some really cool ones. We ate and went to the wood market. There was a lot of cool hand carved things there. I wish I could take pictures but I don’t think they would like that. After the wood market we went shopping and came home. We had to walk part way because the “taxi” we were in ran out of gas. It wasn’t so bad. We did Family Night in our area. It was at E---- and J---- home. It did not go the way we wanted it to. The Mozambican’s love to Limo (the game with a stick). It was hilarious to watch them try and some were actually impressively good.

We had a lesson trying to explain how marriage is a commandment that is more important than Lebolo (Lebolo is an African dowry tradition). I really hope he realizes the importance. Lebolo has quite an effect on a lot of the people here. We also had a very good lesson with a family. We have a hard time sitting with the husband because he has been busy at work. They are a good family and I really like them.  We taught reviewed the Restoration with an investigator Elder Schachterle found on the division. He is very smart. His name is M-----. He remembered almost every single part of the lesson he had been taught last Saturday.

Some of our investigators can only meet in the morning so we used Friday as a flip-flop day. We wore our boots and put our scriptures in plastic bags because it was pouring rain. By the time we got to our area it quit raining and became a rather hot day. The rain boots didn’t help and I got a bit of  a sunburn due to the harsher morning sun. Interestingly morning sun here burns but after about 1100 it really doesn’t. Anyway it was a goo day with some really good lessons. One lesson was tuning into a “bible-bashing” lesson which doesn’t really happen a lot or even at all here. We just stopped the lesson and invited him to pray.

We had the baptism of Maria Saturday morning. I gave a surprise talk on the Holy Ghost. I think that my talk was only 3 minutes but I don’t know. I hope it was good. Last minute but also in Portuguese was kind of hard for me.

One of our evening lessons was really great. It was with the family of C------ and J----. They were gone when we got there but their oldest son F------ and Younger son J--- were there. They weren’t with us when we taught the restoration to the family so we taught it to them as we waited for their parents to get home. When C----- got home we had a really good Word of Wisdom lesson.

Sunday was a great day. There was a child with an ASU shirt on – GO ARIZONA! After church, we had a restoration lesson with A------  and I---. They both were interested and participated. I accidentally left my planner at their house. When I realized I didn’t have it I was really worried. It’s funny to find how attached I am to my planners now. I was able to walk back and get it.

This coin is 5mt. It is equal to about 3 cents and is how much a banana costs
Now I will sound very spoiled and bratty. Eating grapes with seeds is really annoying.


Monday, December 2, 2013

Manga 16th Week – December 2, 2012

We had one of the busiest P-days I have yet had last week. We went to our usual place for internet but the internet was out. We walked 15 minutes further but they did not have internet wither. We walked 15 minutes further again and they had internet but really slow computers. I was able to email so it was better than nothing. After we emailed we went to the Palmairas chapel for Christmas program practice. It took an extra hour but it was worth it because Elder Dillie (a senior missionary) made cinnamon rolls.

 On the way to the second place we stopped and took some pictures of a crashed airplane.

The story is that this plane was downed during one of the wars. It was left there
to decay. It is a cool photo op.

After eating and shopping we had to immediately go to the chapel to send baptismal forms via email to the A.P.’s We walked the train-tracks and took some pictures and got to see some really fast moving trains. We had a good Family Night in our area. We brought Uno and played it. The Mozambicans love it.

Something happened close to us so we had a lockdown on Wednesday. I accidentally made Volcano Fajitas. I used a bit too much spice but they were super tasty. I finished reading Jesus The Christ which is such a good book. Everything was back to normal on Thursday (Thanksgiving)

At one of our investigators house I saw a bloody plastic bag. I asked what was in it. They were excited to show us. It was literally the head of a cow. They bought it for 500 mt at the slaughter house. They bought it for their daughter’s birthday. During the lesson the mother was busy cutting it up. They were really disappointed when they found out the cow head did not contain the tongue.

One day there was a 4 to 6 year old boy standing on the pathways playing with an empty beer bottle. We were walking towards him. Coming from the opposite direction directly at him was a motorcycle. He was busy and not paying attention because he was looking at us. I said “Cuidado” which literally means “care or “careful” but is used as an idiomatic expression meaning “watch-out”. He didn’t listen so I reached over and picked him up to move him off the path. I guess I scared him because a look of doom came into his eyes, he started crying and saying “Mama, Mama”. When I set him down on the other side of the path he instantly was fine. It made me laugh.

Elder Galland and I did division in my old area on Saturday. It was strange being with my old companion in my old area. It honestly felt like we were companions again. We had some good lessons. Elder Galland and Lynn have some super good families. A couple that should be getting married before the end of the year. We had an awesome first lesson also. It was at night way out but it was so worth the walk.

Sunday was the first day of December. It was a very difficult Sunday. The power was out from 800 to 1400. Which means the entire time we were in church we did not have power. It was so hot. Global warming is real, it’s just I call it “summer” and it happens once a year. Here in Mozambique summer happens to happen in December. Other than the lack of power it was a good Sunday I contacted a man from Quilimane. He was a very nice man and wanted to buy me a coke but it was Sunday and it was Fast Sunday so I declined. He asked “what can we do so I will remember this?” I thought for a bit and said “We are going to pray right now!” So we did and it was nice.

Some days are hard, we were going to walk with a member but it fell through and one of our more sure families told us they were having problems and don’t think they want to get married. It was one of those days. It was a good day but we just had some disappointments. We did have some good lessons that day and one of our families should be getting some documents for marriage next week. I can’t complain, I am in AFRICA, I get to serve a great mission with amazing people.