Monday, May 29, 2017

Makadii Week 69!

Hello! Muri bho here? (Are you doing well?)
It has been a good 1st week of the transfer, and we ended it with 4 baptisms in Arcturus! Their names are Tashel, Munyaradzi, Fedeline, and Blessing. They are all super sweet and the baptism went well. I know the gospel will bring blessings to them. Since we had been teaching them for the past few weeks we were the ones to finish their lessons and do the baptism. We are now turning the other investigators in Arcturus over to Elder Hamblin and Elder Koch. With those baptisms, Elder Whiting and I ended with 6 baptisms for the month of May. Pretty crazy that June is now here!
Our Harare East zone ended with 53 baptisms in May. Not what we had hoped for, but despite struggles we were still able to make something of it. Kinda weird to be bummed about 53 baptisms after 70 baptisms in April, but we will keep pushing and continue to bring about much good here in Zimbabwe. We are thankful to the Lord for blessing us with this success. Our goal for June is once again 80!
Things are moving along nicely, and the work continues. Today we had a nice lunch at a Chinese restaurant here in Harare and had a nice game of basketball with some of the others. All in all a good day! :) Tonight we will be gathering at the mission home for our monthly Missionary Leadership Council dinner, and our meeting will be tomorrow morning. We have a zone conference coming up next week, and exchanges starting next week as well. Yebo baba!
We ended up walking with 10 investigators to church this past week, and are planning for 2 baptisms this week for Mollen and her brother Anesu. We found them through teaching Samantha and Vida and they want to be baptized. It is cool to see just how prepared some people can be! We brought some new investigators to church and will be extending some more baptismal invites this week. We'll see how it goes!
I'm doing my best here in Africa. As I continue to see the struggles of so many people here, I am so thankful for the life I have lived and the blessings I have been given. I am thankful to be able help the people improve their lives through the gospel. All those back home enjoy the summer and stay sweet. Love you guys! :)

Monday, May 22, 2017

Makadii Week 68!

Well, hello!
Another week down, and another transfer down too. I am now on transfer #12! Kinda crazy, but I do feel like I have been here for a long time, so not too crazy. haha :) Just living the African life.
Week 6 was busy as usual. We had exchanges, 2 baptisms for Samantha and Vida, transfer news, interviews, etc. Always busy doing something! I was happy for Samantha and Vida to get baptized this week. It has been cool to see them open up to us and to the gospel this past month or so.

I found out that I will be staying in Eastview for another 6 weeks and will remain with Elder Whiting as a zone leader. I haven't stayed with a companion for more than 1 transfer since I was with Sekerere back in July last year. Its been a long time! Kinda weird for me to stay here with Whiting, but it will be nice to see more miracles happen in Eastview this transfer. We have been doing our best to find more people to teach and are working hard. We were able to have 10 investigators at church yesterday, and we had a couple of investigators come that we didn't expect. The work is moving. The bummer is that we will no longer be going to Arcturus to teach there. Other elders have been assigned there now, so we can still go there for interviews and stuff. Just in Eastview for now.
There was a member in our branch who died this past week. Her name was Rosemary. I gave her a blessing on my first day in Eastview, but her health has been declining. It was interesting to take part in some of the funeral events, and to see some different parts of the culture. Her burial was on Sunday, so we just had Sacrament meeting and then attended the funeral with the other members.

We weren't too busy today for transfers. Just helping out with bags and transporting missionaries to various places. We are blessed to have many cars in our zone. Makes it much easier on us! :) We actually had some time to play basketball today which was nice.

Another transfer has begun and time keeps rolling on by. I'm just doing my best to do my part and to seek to enjoy each minute I have left. I am blessed to have a companion who is humble and is willing to work hard. Just gotta keep pushing.
I love you all so much! Stay sweet and stay safe. :)

Monday, May 15, 2017

Makadii Week 67!

Hello again from Africa! :)
This week has been busy and good as usual. We found 17 new investigators and had 14 investigators come to church. As a zone we have 104 baptismal dates set, and 119 people came to church this weekend. Still have a ways to go to reach our goal this month but we are doing our best. We are a blessed zone for sure. If all goes well the next few days, we will have 2 baptisms this coming weekend to end the transfer. Their names are Samantha and Vida. We have been walking with them and others to the church for the past few weeks and it has worked pretty well. It will be a nice end to the transfer. The last week of May we will be having some more baptisms in Arcturus, so we will be busy to help prepare those people as well!
I got to skype/call my family yesterday for Mother's Day, and it was really great. It is always tough to say goodbye when I won't get to talk to them again for another 32 weeks, but it was another great call home.  Crazy to think that I have just one call home left on Christmas. When that call comes, there will just be three weeks left. Only 35 more weeks to serve as a full-time missionary. I better make the most of it! :) Lot's of things still to do, lot of miracles left to see.
Today we went to the same Lion Game Park that I did last year with the Marimba District, this time we went with more people. There were 8 of us from the zone and we had a good time. I saw some of the same stuff as last year, but we were in the park when the Lions were having a roaring fest. It was pretty cool to hear all the lions growling and roaring at each other. A cool experience in Africa! :)
Interviews with President tomorrow, exchanges on Wednesday, baptismal interviews on Friday, and a baptism on Saturday! Things are moving along, and next week is transfers. We will see what the Lord has in store! :) Yebo!
Go Celtics! :)

Monday, May 8, 2017

Makadii Week 66!

Greetings everyone! :)
The week has been pretty typical for us. The beginning of the month always seems to be slow as a missionary in Zimbabwe, and lots of people are coming and going as the holiday ends, and the second school term begins here. We found some new people to teach and are still making plans for our upcoming baptisms toward the end of the month. We had exchanges, and MLC this week which both went well, with more exchanges coming up the next 2 weeks. The transfer is in its finishing stages, with 2 weeks left to go. Next Saturday we will find out the transfer news yet again, and changes will be made. Not sure what will happen.

We have a wonderful family we have been teaching, the Mashaya family. They have been to church the last 2 weeks but sadly most will be leaving as the school term begins here in Zimbabwe. 2 of the kids will have to wait until the next holiday in August to get baptized, but we are hoping to have a baptism for the oldest son and the parents sometime soon. The others we have been working with are still progressing, and we hope all goes well for them! We continue to walk to church each Sunday, and we had a wonderful fast for our investigators yesterday. We are hoping for some miracles. :)
One of the young daughters in the Mashaya family, Tanatswa, is super smart. We were asking about the Holy Ghost in one of our lessons, and this is what she said. "The Holy Ghost brings happy moments to the heart." Very wise words from a 12 year old. I am bummed that her and her sister are leaving for school, to places where the church is not yet established, but I hope that she can be baptized soon after she returns. Chances are I won't still be here by then, but who knows.
I will get to see some of you on my Mother's Day skype this coming Sunday. I am stoked. The crazy thing is, today marks 1 year since my last Mother's Day skype. Crazy how things have changed. Also crazy how I am calling from Harare, just like last time.
Working hard and pushing through. That's all we can really do, right? Sending my love to all of you, wherever you may be. :)

Monday, May 1, 2017

Makadii Week 65!

The week was super busy and was full of ups and downs. All 5 of our baptisms went through, as well as a marriage! We ended up baptizing two young girls in Eastview named Ruvarashe and Diana. We also had a marriage in Arcturus for Mai Peace. Her husband was a less active member. She was baptized as well as her son James, and another girl named Nomatter. We had a marriage and two baptisms on Saturday! :)

Going into this week our zone had 33 baptisms. We finished off the the month of April with 37 baptisms this weekend, and hit our our goal of 70 exactly! The mission had over 234 baptisms in April, and four months into the year we have 791 total baptisms. We are well on our way to our goal of 2000 in the year! :) The Lord blessed us for our hard work. We have MLC again tomorrow, so it will be fun to discuss our progress.
We were busy doing many interviews in the zone, working/teaching in our area, having exchanges, and witnessing baptisms. More exchanges coming up! We ended up with at least 7 investigators at church. We weren't able to find out who all attended in Arcturus. Some of our new investigators vanished this week, which is not uncommon here in Zimbabwe. We are working hard to achieve our goal of 10 baptisms in May. The zone goal was raised to 80 baptisms this month. We have 95 people with baptismal dates right now, so the goal is within reach! I had some cool bracelets made for the zone recently with our zone culture on them. SMILE! :) I hope they liked them.
We had a great zone conference with Bindura, Mutare, and the 2 Harare zones zones during the week and I actually learned a lot. I am still doing my best to keep going strong with 8 1/2 months left to go. For those who are interested, I will be arriving back to the USA on the 20th of January next year, just before the school semester begins. I know there is still lots to do here in Zimbabwe in those 8 1/2 months.
I love you all and wish you the best. For those back home preparing for final exams, I wish you the best! Have a great end to the school year, and a good start to the summer! :) Musari zvakanaka!