Thursday, October 2, 2014

Good Morning Brethren and Sisteren

Exchanges with Ntuli

Having church outside

Chicken in church

In front of the flat

Lusayo getting baptized 


The Mwakasungula family

Lwimiko and Lusayo getting baptized. Love them so much.

Everyone getting baptized

The cool bridge we adventured on a few Pdays ago

On the scary, awesome bridge

When there was a black out in the grocery store

Sept. 29, 2014

It was another great week here in the warm heart of Africa. We walked for dayz and the weather is getting hotter and hotter (October is the peak) but it was still so lovely. I mean, how can it not be lovely when people get up in church and say, "Good morning, brethren and sisteren," or when you ask about their favorite scripture from a specific chapter they share 1 Nephi 16:7 about how Nephi takes a daughter of Ishmael to wife and say, "the prophet found himself a shining star." These people. They're great.

We have also been teaching a few of our recent converts some English words they may not know as we walk to our appointments and one we have taught Pricilla (the cute RC who is preparing to go on a mission after 8 months in the church) is the word "goof". She was reading in 1 Nephi 15:28 during a lesson and she read, "And I said unto them that it was an awful GOOF, which separated the wicked from the tree of life..." So funny.

So a little detail about Africa that you might not know is that they really like the color white--they paint everything white--but NOTHING stays white. The dirt penetrates all and so it's impossible to keep anything white. So I found myself at the kitchen sink one night scrubbing my not-so-white garments (I'm becoming a pro hand washer--the Malawians have taught me well) to try to get them just a little whiter. No matter how much soap, how much bleach, how much I scrubbed, they would only get clean to a point. The next morning I was reading in 3 Nephi 27 about how our garments are only made pure through the blood of Christ and it really hit home for me. Nothing I can do will get my figurative garments perfectly clean but the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I'm grateful for He who makes up the difference.

President Erickson came for specialized training this week and since I am companions to the STL (sister training leader) I got to participate in the training. It was so great. President is fantastic. Something I loved was that we focused on how leadership is a process and that it's not the position but the behaviour that makes you a leader. He encouraged us to live worthily to accept any calling that comes, that we may place ourselves on the altar and offer ourselves to the Lord to do anything He asks. I want to strive to be that willing servant always.

We met a man on the street that said he had met with missionaries before so we went to his house and there was sort of a weird feeling there. We asked him about what all the previous missionaries had already taught him and he was very insistent that we just tell him our basic beliefs. So I started into explaining the Book of Mormon a bit and then he walks out of the room and brings a leather bound Book of Mormon to us. As we looked through it, it all looked the same except the introduction. He was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ who I guess believe most of what we believe except for the prophets that followed Joseph Smith. It was the strangest experience. It was like meeting your doppelganger. We struggled to know how to teach them when they already had so much of the truth. It was quite interesting. I never expected to run into an LDS break off in the middle a village in Malawi. AND their church building is in OUR area. I don't know how we've never heard of it before.

We had a baptism yesterday, as you saw in the pictures, and it was so great. It wasn't completely smooth but it ended up being a great occasion. There were four of them: Lwimiko and Lusayo, children of Mary who got baptized in July, and Rodrick and Perez, friends of Gift who got baptized in August. It's so amazing to watch this little branch grow. These people are very inexperienced and very dear.

We met with Bright Banda again (the guy that we met in the internet shop who lives in Nkhata Bay) and it was so great. I am used to teaching to a primary level to help people understand, but he is so prepared and has a deep understanding of things so it's challenging and exciting to teach him. He is truly someone special. We have to get permission to have him baptized but hopefully in the next month or two it will happen. The day that happens will be a sweet day, indeed.

I GRADUATED from my training so now I am full fledged and we get an extra hour of proselyting. Woohoo!

Love you so much! 
Sister Michaela Proctor

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