Dia Dos Namorados.
That’s how you say valentines day here in Mozambique. Directly translated, its “Day of the Boyfriends”. I like that translation a lot better. 🙂
Last Valentines Day was a pretty big deal, I opened my mission call and found out that I would be spending the next two years of my life in some faraway African country called Mozambique. One year later, here I am. 🙂
This week… well, let me just start off by saying we began the week with big plans. We set off at the beginning with the goal to have 100 people at church and 5 complete investigator families. It wasnt an unrealistic goal; the week before we had 87 people at church and 2 complete investigator families. It was going to make us stretch, but we would be able to get it done. Fast forward 6 days to sacrament meeting, where we have 36 people at church including us and 0 complete investigator families.
A little disappointing, yes. 🙂 But we worked really hard this week, and had a lot of good experiences. We just have a little bit more work to do and a little more patience to learn. 🙂
We are teaching about 6 or 7 families, and they are all inching along towards the finish line of baptism and marriage. We dropped a lot of the families Elder Heaton and I were teaching, and started over, finding new ones. Right now, we have a lot of “ok” families but we don’t have any that we are like “Wow, they are getting baptized FOR SURE!” We are doing a lot of street contacts, and asking for a lot of references. References is something the mission has been really emphasizing lately, asking every single contact for a reference. So this week, I was contacting someone, and he was ok, didn’t appear super interested or educated but was willing to accept a visit. So I was writing down his phone number, and I remembered to ask him for a reference. And he actually gave us one! His friend, who lives close, has been looking for a church. So we wrote down his number and the number of his friend, and I left the contact feeling good about turning a sketchy contact into a reference as well. Turns out, later that week we were trying to call his friend but couldnt get a hold of him. But we called the sketchy guy, and set up a lesson with him. So we were going to meet him, expecting the lesson to fall through like most of them do, and he was there, took us to his house. He was almost a completely different person! Happy, talking, we got there, and he had a nice house and a motor cycle, turns out he has a good job and is well educated, and ended up being a really good restoration lesson! They accepted baptism, and yeah it just went really well. I learned a lot, both about asking for references and about not judging people. 🙂
Funny story of the week, we woke up thursday morning, to find out that we had locked ourselves in. Our house is pretty high security, with lots of cage type things with padlocks. So we had left the keys outside of one of these cages, that was locked shut with two padlocks, and the spares were in the kitchen. We literally had no way to get out, and we had a lesson marked at 8 o clock and at 9 o clock. We found a teeny little hand saw and literally speant the ENTIRE morning, until lunch time, sawing through these padlocks. Moral of the story. Dont forget the keys when you lock up at night. 🙂
Valentines day went well, we didn’t really celebrate but we both wore pink ties, and went out to eat at a restaurant called Quelimane Acima Do Mundo, or Quelimane on top of the world. They have pizzas there, and I got my favorite, the shrimp and squid pizza. It is legitimately the best. Although we did get a lot of wierd looks, apperantly valentines day isnt the best day to go out to eat with another guy…
Thursday was where the problems started. It started softly, but it started to rain. And slowly it picked up, and it RAINED. It rained so much. It rained non stop, pouring dumping rain, from Thursday morning until Sunday night. People said it was the worst rain in years here. It flooded BAD. The streets were literally like rivers, with 8 inches of water. On the middle of the street! It was almost impossible to work. No one wanted to sit, no one was out on the streets, no one was even working. Everyone just stayed in their houses. So yeah, It was POURING on sunday morning when we woke up, and right then we knew that our goals for sunday wouldnt happen. We called through all of our families, and they all said that they were really sorry but it was literally impossible for them to leave there house, etc. So yeah. When church started, there were 10 of us, drenched, sitting in the room. By the end, there were 36. But man it was hard!
Its been almost 2 months since our branch president has come to church, he is still out of town, and he wont be here next week either. It is kind of hard, because we are trying to be missionaries, and the entire branch presidency at the same time. But it is good.
I honestly love it. I know that this is MY mission. That it was completely personalized for me. That everything, from which area you are in, to who your companion is, to how many people you teach and how many you baptize, is part of God’s plan to mold me into the person he wants me to become. And I am really grateful for that. Yeah, this week was a little frusterating, but we still were able to teach and contact a lot of people. We are working hard, and Elder Vestia keeps things funny. He is super cool, really helping me develop my sarcasm in portuguese. 🙂
We started working out this week! Elder Vestia is ripped and I still have the muscle mass of a 9 year old girl, but we started and I got WRECKED. I woke up after the first morning and couldnt use my arms to move myself out of bed because they hurt so much. Its pretty funny. I noticed it helps me feel better during the day though, so thats pretty cool.
Anyways, not much else to report. Thanks for everything you guys do.