Good morning to all!
We decided to come to the office last night and sleep here so that right at 6:30 when we wake up, we can get going on our P-day festivities. Well, woke up this morning to A RIVER flowing where the street used to be outside our house. Completely flooded. Then some missionaries came to get some money to pay for a doctors appointment, and we had to drive them from the office to the hospital and it was literally like driving up a river. It took forever, and the water was like 4 feet deep! You could barely see anything, it was all covered in water and stuff. Crazy. 🙂
But yeah. 🙂 This was a good week! Had some pretty intense moments though. First off, you remember Sergio, that 24 year old I baptized the week before I left Quelimane? Well I don’t think I told you this, but the day I was leaving, he showed up and said that he had a girlfriend who lives in Maputo, who is getting transfered up to Quelimane. And he said they wanted to get married and she wanted to get baptized!!! Super funny. Well, this saturday they got married and she got baptized! Elder Vestia called me and was talking to me about it. I thought that was cool.
This week, we got pulled over a couple times. Luckily, Elder Douglas was driving all of the times. 🙂 Here, cops can just pull over whoever they want. There are two types of cops-grey shirt cops and white shirt cops. The grey shirt ones love to pull you over and tell you you are going to jail, to try and provoke you to bribe them and make them go away, but they actually don’t have any legal power to give you a ticket or anything. However, the white ones are usually a little more serious, and they actually CAN take you to jail. Well, this week we got pulled over by a white shirt! He said we were driving with the brights on. We super weren’t, but he still pulled us over. He said he was going to take Elder Douglas to jail, since we dont have international driver’s license, which technically should work but the cops don’t accept them. So he was going to take him to jail, until the cop starting saying, “But it would be really ugly to take a man of God to prison, so I think we should just try and find a better way to solve this.” AKA “Give me 300 Metacais and this will all go away”. Well, we weren’t just going to pay him off, so we said he could take us to jail, then he started getting serious, so we gave him a Book of Mormon and a Mormon Tabernacle Choir CD. Yeah, we definitely bribed off a cop with A Book of Mormon and Motab. 🙂
This week we also had a lot of work to get done in the office, with month end reports and stuff. It was also tricky because President Kretly was out of town, he was in Beira for Zone Conference for all of last week. We went shopping for things for the new sister’s apartment as well, which took a while to get beds, desks, appliances, and everything taken care of for that.
I am pretty much a pro at driving stick shift. 🙂 Just kidding. It is still kind of a struggle but I’m getting better. 🙂 I drive around maybe 40% of the time.
This week we had a metting with the Maputo Zone, at the office. It was funny because the training was given by Elder Heaton, who was my companion in Quelimane but now is my Zone Leader here. It was good to see everyone and talk to them and stuff. There were also two of the new elders here, who just got in on March 10th. One of them was talking to the APs, saying that before he came on a mission, he and his family read through a blog of one elder, and he was talking about how it had a story of the elders blessing babies in a hospital and stuff. I said, “Hey, that’s my blog!” He was pretty excited, and talked to me about how my blog got him really excited to come and serve here in mozambique. I got to show him pictures of Klagesia, that baby from the story he was talking about and stuff. I thought that was a cool experience, kind of made my day!
We also had kind of a scare this week, there is a senior couple named the Tidwells, who we work really closely with. (I think she knows Grandma craner?) Well, they were supposed to go to Tete, up north, to give a training. So we drove them to the airport (at 5:00 in the morning, I might add), and sent them off. We watched them go in with their bags, and check in, and walk towards the gate, so we assumed everything was fine. They were flying down with a Counselor, Samo Goncalvez. Well, about two hours later, we get a call from President Kretly, asking if the Tidwells made it on the plane! They had a layover in Beira, where President was, and President was talking to Samo Goncalvez who was on the same plane, but President said the Tidwells weren’t there! He asked us if we watched them, if they had there tickets and everything. We got pretty scared, thinking that the missed the flight! So we called them, and they didn’t answer. We were kind of freaking out, but then we got a text from president saying they had just walked out, and they were fine. That was a releif!
This week was a pretty good one in our area as well, we were able to spend a decent amount of time in Chamanculo, teaching our families. Vasco and Katelia are ON FIRE!!! They are doing so good, getting all their documents and stuff. We should open their process this week, and they will get married and baptized April 19th! Our other families are doing well too. 🙂
So, This week something really scary happened. I thought a lot about whether or not to include this next experience. It is pretty… intense, so… if you don’t want to read it, stop now.
This week, we were coming home from a lesson, later at night. We were walking down the main road in our area, when in front of us, we saw a man start to get beat up by about 4 or five other guys. He was getting punched, and kicked. We heard someone say he was a robber. We yelled at them to stop, but things started getting more serious, and more people started gathering around and watching. Then, one of the people who was beating him up through a bottle at the ground, shattering glass everywhere. Everybody screamed. I felt like we needed to get out of there BAD. There was a huge crowd by now, and the violence was escalating. One of the assailants broke a bottle on the ground, and started stabbing the man with the broken glass. He hadn’t been putting up much of a fight until now, but when he started getting stabbed, he started screaming. My stomach was sick. It was the worst thing I have ever experienced in my life. We really felt like we needed to leave, but there really wasn’t a way to get out without going right through them. They took off all of his clothes, he was pretty much unconcious by now. It was like, we were frozen in fear. Elder douglas was asking, Whats the number for the police! But there isn’t one here. The police are too busy pulling people over to get bribed, They started dragging him away, and there was no doubt it was to kill him. We felt so helpless. There was literally nothing we could do. People were yelling at us that we needed to get home. So finally, we were able to leave, and we left. We walked home so fast, in silence. Complete silence. It was the worst, scariest experience of my life.
So yeah. 🙂 Hate to close with the downer, but we are fine. We won’t be going into that area at night anymore. 🙂 Church yesterday was great, we had 4 complete families at church, then 4 lessons with a member present, and 16 street contacts! So yeah. I am doing good, loving life. Even if things get a little bit sketchy, like they did this week, I know that that we will be protected if we are obedient and don’t do stupid things. 🙂
Thanks, love you guys,