Monday, November 28, 2016

Salibonani Week 43!

Hello everyone! Happy Holidays! I hope all of you had a blessed Thanksgiving! :)
I have made it safely to Harare today, it is nice and rainy here and I love it. It makes the weather cool, and makes me feel closer to home! By the way, we take a bus to and from Bulawayo when we come, so I don't drive the whole 6 hours in the car. 

I did end up making an attempt to make some sort of Thanksgiving food. I did my best to make some mashed potatoes, and I had a turkey gravy packet from the USA that I got from another missionary. I cooked that, some green peas, and some mince meat and mixed it all together. At least I had a little taste of home on Thursday this week!
Big news from Zimbabwe, they just released the new bond notes into circulation today! You can look it up and learn more, but right now I'm not quite sure how it will affect the mission. We will have to wait and see. They only have $2 and $5 notes at the moment, and the amount you take is limited to $50 a day, $150 per week. We will see what will happen!
We had a wonderful week as a zone and ended up surpassing our goal for baptisms in November. We ended up with 33! As ZL's we got the chance to go out of our area, and to help out some of the areas with no missionaries at the moment. We taught and baptised 5 people from a place in Bulawayo called Emakhandeni, which is just close to our area, and helped another 2 get baptized in a place called Emganwini, also in Blues. All of those people came to church on their own or with the help of members. Also, one of our true investigators in Luveve, Lethokuhle, finally decided to get baptized this week! We had a total of 8. The Lord truly helped us reach our goal, and all the baptisms went well. The water problems didn't get in the way this time! Br Tshuma was also confirmed on Sunday! It is cool to see the Lord preparing people behind the scenes.
This coming week is the last of the current transfer and we will have transfer news on Saturday. If I am leaving Bulawayo it will be a big surprise! The future is bright and I am doing my best! Crazy that December is already here.
I love you all so so much! Have a wonderful end to the school year, and a wonderful Holiday season! I am thankful for all of you, my family and friends, and for all the blessings my Father in Heaven and Savior Jesus Christ have given me!
Go Pokes! Go Celtics!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Salibonani Week 42!

Well, another week has come and gone!
The rains have finally arrived here in Zimbabwe, at least here in Bulawayo! It will take a few months of pretty solid rain to totally fix the water shortage they have going on right now, but at least it is a good sign of things to come! When it rains, a ton of small frogs and toads just come out. They are everywhere!
This week was pretty normal, just running around taking care of things, and doing the Lord's work. We are still struggling to get our investigators to commit and progress, and it is always frustrating when things don't go well. Br. Tshuma ended up getting baptized on Sunday after church, and his wife and daughter came to church for the first time. Br. Tshuma came to church on his own before I came to Bulawayo, and it has been super easy to help him progress. He gave a very powerful testimony after his baptism, and it was really cool to see how the spirit can work on someone when they exercise their faith. He definitely exercised his!

The bummer deal was that the water problems affected his baptism. We had a member fill up the font for us during the week, but when we showed up on Sunday it was very low. We tried to fill it up more, but there was no running water, so we had to make do with what we had. I was asked by Br, Tshuma to perform his baptism, and it ended up being a very unorthodox baptism, one I will always remember. In total, we had to do it about 4 or 5 times until it was done correctly. Because the water was so low, we had to improvise and have him sit down in the font, and I helped him basically lay down in the water until he went under. The important thing is that it was done with proper authority, and done in the correct way, by immersion. I always get a little frustrated when baptisms don't run smoothly, I feel like I messed up or something. I hope that the Lord is happy with my efforts, no matter how we made it work, I did my best!
Things are moving along and we are doing our best! I will be headed to Harare again next Monday for MLC, so I will be emailing from there again. It's crazy that I have already been in Blues for a month, and next week will be the start of the final week of the transfer! I have been told by the office that I have a few packages waiting there for me, so I am excited to open my first Christmas package!
I love all of you wherever you may be! If you are in the States, have a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving, enjoy the football games, and have a blast putting up Christmas decorations! I will be missing the feast for sure, but am planning to make an awesome meal for myself, or at least attempt to! :)
So happy to hear that the cowboy football team is still kicking butt! Go Pokes! Go Celtics! 

Monday, November 14, 2016

Salibonani Week 41!

Lingani!? :)
Hello my family and friends, I hope all is good wherever you may be. I know that the election has caused a lot of craziness in the USA, but I know that all will be ok! No matter who is at the head of the country, the US will still be great. Each President brings good and bad. Let's keep and open mind and do our best to keep America the land of the free and home of the brave. :)
Things are ok but very busy here. In Bulawayo this week we have had major water problems. The dams are running dry here in Zimbabwe, so they are cutting water off for up to 72 hours or more. We have been busty running around making sure all the missionaries have been taken care of. For whatever reason, our house had no problems at all. Some missionaries have had to shower at our house. It really is a miracle that we have had no problems. The Lord is really looking out for us.
Our area is really struggling at the moment, and the people we had a lot of faith in have fallen back a bit in their progress. Br. Tshuma will be getting baptized this coming week, and maybe a few others in the comign weeks. We are doing our best with what we have! My old investigators in Chegutu are still getting baptized! Elder Makalio is keeping the ball rolling. The old Gogo who called me here boyfriend was just baptized this week. I am so happy for her.
Things are going pretty well for the most part, there are always frustrations, but I know the Lord is helping me grow in the process. Crazy that November is already half way done! Please keep enjoying the football season, and enjoy Thanksgiving. I will for sure be missing the home cooked meal. Go Pokes and Go Celtics! :)
Ngiyanithanda! :)
P.S. Played some soccer and ran around for the first time in awhile today. I am so out of shape! I have been having to give up running on my mission. I just don't have the time or energy to do it. Everyone has to sacrifice things they love on their mission. One of mine happens to be running. I do it when I can! I am focusing on teaching, so that has replaced my running.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Salibonani Week 40!

Yebo! Just hit 40 weeks!
Sorry, as a ZL I just don't have the time I usually have had, so this might be pretty short. I will try to include the good stuff.
I am amlost all the way adjusted to Bulawayo, and I am starting to get the ZL thing down. I really enjoy being so involved in the mission and with the other missionaries. It does bring added stress, but it is an exciting change in my mission experience. I am excited to see where it takes me! My first MLC experience last Tuesday was good, and I enjoyed giving my input in the council! I am super excited for the upcoming Christmas events, including a Christmas Devotional (basically a Zone Conference but with a Christmas focus).

 I really do love Christmas time, even if I am here in Africa. It does stink that I wont have any snow, but I hope I can find a small Christmas tree to use. :) We will have to wait and see! By the way, they don't celebrate Halloween here. They have no idea what that even is in most places.
This week has involved a lot of running around helping and transporting missionaries. We were able to have some really great lessons with our investigators and we have some really great people that we are preparing for baptism. Br. Tshuma, Lethokuhle, Michael, and others! We will see how everything goes these next few weeks, but at least we have people coming to church. These last few weeks, 4 more of the investigators I had left in Chegutu were baptized by Elder Makalio. I am so happy that even though I left, things are still going well. I have been blessed to learn that many of my former investigators in my old areas have been baptized so far on my mission. It really is a great feeling. I called some old friends and converts from Marimba and Chegutu this week and it was really nice to catch up. It is cool to see how much of an effect you can have on the places and people you serve. :)
I do have a correction on one of my previous emails. Madora are caterpillars, not worms. Either way, I still really like them. It doesn't sound like it, but if you cook them right, they taste delicious. Lately, my companion has been making Chapati which is really good.
We also got caught in a small dust storm/tornado in the middle of a lesson last week. That was quite interesting. You see small dust tornados quite often around here. One thing I noticed here in Blues is that the soil is a much lighter color than Northern Zimbabwe. Blues is Southwest in Zimbabwe. There has been a lot of water problems in the suburbs this past week, so we have bee busy trying to make sure all the missionaries have what they need.
I love you all so much. Please continue to be happy, and to have a positive outlook. It will make all the difference! Keep cheering on the 7-2 Wyoming Cowboys for me. I am so happy that the team is finally finding success. Go Pokes, and Go Celtics! :)
Nisale kahle! :)
PS. Crazy that the Cubs came back to win the World Series and end the curse!
Also, I didn't really take many pictures this week, so I uploaded some ones that I took in Chegutu.