Monday, August 28, 2017

Makadii Week 82!

It is now officially 20 weeks left in the mission field!
The past week was good, and we are doing well. Kinda crazy that August is over this week. Time is always moving! Elder Byrom and I were able to see a few miracles but also some disappointments in our area. Many of the people we have been working with just aren't progressing at all, and it always stinks to see the people you put your faith in not keep commitments, especially when they tell you they will. (That is a big problem in Zimbabwe). We are doing our best to be patient with everyone and to keep our faith in them. We did find some new people this week that actually came to church on their own! There is nothing set in stone, but we should be having another baptism in two weeks for a young man named Petros. Hopefully there will be another added to that day, and others added later on in the month of September. We are really asking the Lord to help us find more success in September after a tough August. One awesome thing from this week was that yesterday, some of my old converts from Chegutu came to visit our branch in Kadoma. I was super happy to see them and to see that they are still doing the right things. :)
The devotional this week with Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson and her husband, as well as our newly called General Authority Seventy Elder Joni Koch, was a really good experience. It is always rare for us to be visited by General Authorities and General Presidents of the church here in Zimbabwe, so it was really fun to be there and to learn from them. The spirit always teaches me the things that I need to learn at meetings like that. It will be an awesome memory for sure. I visited with Elder Joni Koch after the meeting and he asked me where I was from. When I told him I was from Wyoming this is what he said: "There are still people living in Wyoming?" haha :) I know people always make fun of Wyoming, but I love it with all of my heart. I love the fact that the population is so small, people just don't know what they are missing! Go Wyoming! I am the only elder from Wyo so I get a lot of crap for it. haha :)  Lots of driving this week for the devotional as well as for baptismal interviews in the zone. I sure am ready for a fresh start to a new week.
There is an opposition here in Rimuka, Kadoma that I have never really faced on my mission. People think we are Satanist!? Not kidding at all. Apparently The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter Day Saints is actually The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Satanists, if that makes any sense at all. There are some other places in Zim that have similar views. It has been so hard to get people to understand that we are not at all like that. It plays a big part in our success because it is hard to find true investigators that actually want to come to church, and it is extremely hard to get people that we are teaching to come and see for themselves that the church is true. Pakaipa. Zvakaoma!
Us elders here in Kadoma had an awesome Squash ball tournament this morning. Four of us played and I ended up with the 3 seed going into the elimination rounds. I came back from a big deficit in the semi-final to move on to the championship final against my companion Elder Byrom. We played our games to 11, and I was down 6-2 early on. I mounted a fierce comeback to win the final 11-9. Yebo baba! I am the Kadoma Squash ball Champion! It was fun to move around and relieve some stress. I will have to defend my title sometime soon! :)
With September coming up, Zimbabwe is about to get really hot. I am not excited for that, especially because Kadoma is one of the hotter places in the mission, and I don't know how much longer I will be here in Kadoma. We will have to see how bad it gets. The next few months I will be sweating like crazy! The mosquitoes are also being seen again. I hate those things!
I love you all and I know that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints really is the true church on the earth today. It is the only place we can find the fullness of the gospel. Whatever others may think about the church, they will never know the truth until they come and see for themselves.

Have a good week and an awesome start to the autumn months. My favorite time of year back home. :)

Monday, August 21, 2017

Makadii Week 81!

The end of another week in good ol' Zimbabzwe. (That's how President Mkhablea says Zimbabwe.) :)
The first week of the transfer has gone well and I have enjoyed being with and getting to know Elder Byrom. He is from a place two hours outside of London called Star, England. It is not far from Cheddar, England where the original cheddar cheese comes from. Kinda cool! His dad is his Stake President, and he has 3 sibilings, 2 brothers and one sister. He is set to attend BYU Provo after his mission and he has plans to become a dentist. He says he wants to live in Arizona. His dad was actually born in Harare back when it was still Rhodesia. He has some cousins living in Harare right now. He is just turning 1 year on his mission and he is a great guy. We have been working hard and I have been showing him the members and the area in Rimuka. We are having struggles seeing progress, and we are going to fall well short of our goal this month which is a bummer. We had planned to have a baptism for Br. Semba this coming week, but he hasn't been able to come to church for the last 2 weeks so we have to postone it until September. We did have 4 other investigators come to church this week, and it was the first time for 3 of them. We are being patient and doing our part. Miracles are on the way for sure! :)
Everyone in the zone is now settled and all of the new misisonaries have arrived. The transfer is now rolling right along. This week on Friday, Sister Oscarson, the General Young Women's President, will be visiting Zimbabwe. We are privelged to attend a devotional with her in Harare. Missionaries from from Chegutu, Kadoma, and Bindura get to attend the devotional along with the missionaries in Harare. I am excited to meet her and to attend the meeting. Should be sweet! :)
This morning after going to the gym, all of us elders in Kadoma climbed the water towers and got a nice view of all of Kadoma. It was sweet!
Not much to report this week. The work continues! It has been fun to talk to Elder Byrom about the differences between British English and American English this week. I always tell him how American English is better. haha :)

I guess this full solar eclispe is a pretty big deal so I hope it is sweet. Love you all! For those who are starting school soon, have a blast this fall semester. Talk to you next week! Tinowonana! :)

Monday, August 14, 2017

Makadii Week 80!

Wow, 80 weeks for real?
It has been a good Week 6 to finish off Transfer #13. We worked hard but didn't see many results. This weekend is a big holiday in Zimbabwe (Heroes Day), so people have been busy and out of town, which makes our work that much harder. Nothing to complain about, just have to work harder! Had exchanges with the other guys in Kadoma, and I worked with Elder Condie who is now in Chegutu. We had a good day together!
We received the transfer news this week and made the calls to the zone. I am staying in Kadoma for another 6 weeks and will have the pleasure of working with a new companion Elder Byrom. He is from the UK. He will be my 11th companion in 14 transfers! I was his ZL in Bulawayo and now he is becoming my companion. I am remaining a ZL for an 8th straight transfer and will be helping Elder Byrom 9 (a new ZL) to learn the ropes. He is turning 1 year on his mission in a couple weeks. He came last year in the same group as Elder Makalio.

Same area, same branch as the last 6 weeks. Lot's of changes throughout the mission, and the addition of 2 elders in Kadoma. There are now 14 in the zone and 6 in Kadoma. My old pal Elder Aden and I will be reunited, which I am happy about. Should be a fun transfer! All the sisters that I came with are either gone already or are leaving this week. Officially over 18 months and now right at 5 months left to go.
I had a blast with Elder Billings in our 6 weeks together. Time went by super fast, but we accomplished a lot , and had some good experiences together. He goes home in 6 weeks. Crazy stuff. He is off to Bulawayo! Wishing him the best. One funny story from this week: We had a lot of appointments fall through and we were knocking on some doors. At one house there was a big turkey in the yard and I started to make turkey noises to see what it would do. I had a nice conversation with a turkey in Zimbabwe this week. I know I'm weird. :) Gave us a good laugh.
The work is moving along despite opposition, and Elder Byrom and I have our work cut out for us the next 6 weeks. Lots to do in Rimuka, Kadoma. President Mkhabela visited our branch yesterday for church. It was the first time on my mission to attend church with him.
I love you all so much. Keep loving life, and always remember that you are a child of God with the potential to become like him. No greater knowledge to have than that! :)

Monday, August 7, 2017

Makadii Week 79!

Well, some cool stuff happened this week!
The week was pretty normal with lots of teaching and exchanges. We had a great MLC meeting in Harare on Tuesday and traveled safely throughout the week. We ended the week with another baptism on Sunday, for a 17 year old named Tapiwa! With his baptism, and the baptisms of my old investigators, Mai Owen and Mai Dorcas in Harare as well this weekend, there are now 102 of my investigators that have been baptized and made covenants with God! Another plus is that all of the confirmations happened as well. We also have an investigator, Br. Semba, who was first taught by Elder Billings and Elder Robison back in February, that finally came to church for the first time after many months of teaching! He even asked when he is getting baptized when he came to church, so we will see if he has finally found his commitment in the coming weeks. If all goes well, he will be baptized at the end of the month. We also have another awesome investigator, Davis, who will be baptized in 2 weeks time. Lot's of blessings for sure.The work in Africa really is crazy, but it is moving right along.
We had a branch activity on Saturday and there was a good turnout even though everyone was late. We had lot's of investigators there and we played some frisbee, basketball, and soccer with the members. All in all a good day. The highlight of the week was for sure the baptism, but also the fact that we got to hang out with a family of elephants today! I have trying to upload pictures and even a video. but the internet cafe is not cooperating. If I don't manage to send pictures this week. I will make sure to send some next week. It was awesome! We went on a game drive, and had a nice lunch as well. A memorable pday for sure!
I also went to visit some old friends in Chegutu on our way back from MLC. If you can remember, last year when I left there was a newborn baby who was named after me. Dennis Kevin Chimusalo. I passed by and visited him and his family again, as well as some of my converts there. He is so much bigger now! It is crazy how time flies!
It is pretty crazy that the final week of the transfer is here yet again. We will receive our transfer news on Saturday this week, and transfers will be on Monday next week. It is tough to tell if I will be staying with Elder Billings or not, but either way I have really enjoyed my time with him. Always exciting to see what will happen and where I will be, and who I will be with. Lot's of things are happening in the mission so it is tough to tell just how much things will change. We will keep working hard this week and will have our last exchanges of the transfer. Onward, ever onward! The last 4 transfers are about to begin! Crazy stuff! :)
I love you all! Musare zvakanaka! :)