Monday, April 23, 2018

Baptisms Set

Hello,

This has been another good week. Everything is going well. We have two baptisms this Saturday. One is a little girl named Zanazay, the other is a guy named Allison. They are both pretty awesome and really want to be baptized. We are excited for them. On the 12th of May there should be a lot more people being baptized. This next transfer starts today and it is going to be a good one. We have a lot of great things lined up.  I have two transfers left so this will most likely be the area where I finish my mission.

Here are some pictures of Elder Jakins and I waiting out the rain in our branch presidents house with his kids.

 Soazara and I (stripped shirt guy)




Sincerely,
Elder Allen


Elder Jakins

A sandwich we made

Kids in Fort D


Elder Jakins and Sam waiting out the rain in their branch president's house.



Elder Jakins and a Lemur

Monday, April 16, 2018

Killing Two Birds with One Stone


Hello,

This has been a good week getting to know Bazari Be better. The members are awesome here, they help us a lot. We have a lot of cool investigators too. The other day we went and taught a guy named Allison. He wanted to go around and teach with us through out the day. We thought why not? So he spent the rest of the day with us. We went around teaching things that we have not even taught him yet. It was cool and killed two birds with one stone.

I sent a bunch of pictures of children attacking me at church. At first i thought it was cute but then I shortly realized how dangerous of a situation I let myself get into... They wrecked me.






Last night our AC was dripping so we decided to turn it off and just open the windows and doors to let in a breeze. After I finished eating my bowl of chili i started heading to the kitchen so I could wash it. On the way I looked up and watched a giant rat walk in and go behind the fridge. He walked right through the front door and entered our domain. I shouted at the other Elders to weapon up. We all took our places and started guiding the rat violently towards the front door. I never knew that rats could jump... That thing was fighting back like Splinter from The Ninja Turtles. We finally overcame the rat and got it out the front door. 

That is how the week went.
Sincerely,
Elder Allen

Monday, April 9, 2018

Conference & Beliefs

Hi,

We have received transfer news early. I will be leaving the area I am currently in and move to another area in Fort Dauphin called Bazari be. It will be sad leaving all the people I have been teaching and preparing for baptism but I am grateful for the opportunity to stay here in Fort Dauphin. The other missionaries will take care of Tanambao. We work hard where ever we are.  

My new companions name is Elder Jakins. He is from the same MTC group as me so this next transfer will be sweet.  He also likes to bake, so I will eat lots of zucchini bread.


General Conference was really good. The new Prophet is a great guy, he is full of love and very inspiring. One of my favorite statements from conference was, "How can we help others the most? Teach them about their identity (being a child of God). Then the nature of God (loving heavenly Father). As we come to understand who we truly are we look at the world different and strive to be better people. As we understand the character of God we begin to trust him more, follow him more, and love him more. It makes all the difference."
(watching General Conference)

I heard a crazy story from some people we are teaching. Malagasies literally believe things like this... There was a man from Tana (the main city in Mada). He was married and had kids. Every so often his work would send him to a Province called Toliara to take care of business. While he was there he cheated on his wife with another women. When it was time for him to return to Tana his mistress was angry and gave him something to make him fall asleep. The next day he did not think much of it and went on his way. When he arrived back in Tana he then realized that his (filahiana) was gone. That caused him to return to Toliara to go find his (filahiana). When he returned he saw it sitting in a jar at his mistresses house. He begged for it back. He explained that he needed it because he had a wife and kids back home. She was finally convinced to give it back. Except she transformed his (filahiana) into a snake. From that day forth he had to place some meat on his leg everyday so that the snake would not eat his thigh... True story. This was a friend of a cousin of an uncle of one of our investigators that had that happen to him. 

Every single Malagasy also believes that mermaids are real. Whether they are poor or rich. Live in the country side or in the city. They all believe in mermaids and claim that they know someone who has seen them. I have yet to meet a person who has seen them himself. Hopefully one day I will.

Have a good week.
Sincerely,
Elder Allen

Saying Goodbye to Elder Shelby

Beach day

view from the house

Monday, April 2, 2018

The Obstacle Called MARRIAGE

Hi!

This week I  don't have a lot of time to write. It is Easter and on holidays everything closes here.

This last Sunday we had a new investigator family come to church for the first time. We are getting so many new investigators and almost all of them come to church. It is great. The only sad thing is that they all need to be married in order to be baptized. It is great that they are diligent and coming to church, it is just sad when we give them the goal of being baptized and the obstacle of legal marriage just stops them. Our 3 baptisms that were scheduled for this week were pushed back because they weren't quite ready.  The day before the interview he told us that he wasn't legally married.  He kind of lied to us earlier because he really wanted to be baptized.  Good thing he told us, because that would have been bad finding our after the baptism that he wasn't legally married yet.  We are starting to build a plan to help all of theses people get married as soon as possible.

Remember when the water heater exploded and flooded our house... This time it was the washing machine... The house flooded again and we had to stay up all night mopping and scooping water into the shower. That was a couple of days ago.  We are in the process of getting a new house. We have been moving stuff, but it still isn't ready to live in yet.  We will be installing water filters soon and then getting furniture.  By the next transfer we should be completely moved in.  Hopefully we will be sleeping there by next week.

Elder Shelby and I went to a soiree (dinner) at a member's house on Saturday and they fed us Shark. It tastes like regular fish with no bones. It's pretty good.  Today were are having a picnic at the beach and fishing with some cool investigators and missionaries.

That is all I have for this week.
Sincerely,
Elder Allen




Our new House





6 Elders in the back of a truck




Monday, March 26, 2018

"I'm a new member"

Hello,

Things are going pretty good here. We had some great lessons with our investigators this week and three of them should be getting baptized this Saturday!   At church on Sunday they stood up to introduce themselves and they stated their name along with, "I'm a new member". You can tell that they really want to be baptized.

In one lesson with a newer investigator there was a guy sleeping in the back as we taught the plan of salvation. He woke up near the end as we were explaining to them the states of glory in heaven as it is explained in 1 Cor. 15. The sun, the moon, and the stars. Everyone started talking about how they want to be able to receive the glory that is like the sun (in other words the most glory and happiness). The guy in the back then said, "why would you want to go there? It would be too hot. I'll take the moon."  We then had to explain to him that it was just an example and no one would actually be going to the sun or moon.

Another cool lesson we had was with this lady named Marina. She was renting a room out from one of our investigators. She is actually from Ivato in Tana which was my old area. She will be going back soon. However, we were able to teach her and in the middle of the lesson she asked, "Does this mean that I need to be baptized again?" We explained to her that it was essential and why that was important. She began to cry and just told us that she was happy because she felt the spirit and thinks that what we were saying was true. She is going to come watch the baptisms on Saturday. I hope the missionaries in Ivato can take over teaching her when she returns to Tana.

The Gospel is a very important thing! It is God's plan for the happiness and salvation of his children. It needs to be understood and followed. It will have a bigger effect on everyone's life more than anything else. I feel privileged to be able to help others change their lives through the gospel.

Sincerely,
Elder Allen







Monday, March 19, 2018

A First for Ft. D

Interview with President Foote
Hello everybody,

This week we had the First District Conference ever created here in Fort Dauphin. The Leadership was changed and a lot of guys are getting the Melchezidek priesthood. It was cool to be there and see it all happen. Pres, Foote came up to conduct the Conference.  It has been great having him here.






Funny thing is, on the Saturday prior to the conference we came home after working and saw two elders sitting at the table drinking juice. We asked what was wrong. but with in a couple of seconds we realized that the entire house was flooded. Our water heater had exploded while we were gone and it had filled up the house with water.
We stayed up late pushing the water towards the bathroom while other Elders were scooping it into the shower drain. That was pretty lame and caused our water to be cut the night before the conference.  We should be getting a new water heater today.  Now we really need a new house that isn't broken.  We are still trying to work out the logistics of that.

Spiritual note: During a lesson the other day Elder Shelby started bearing his testimony right as Disney's Moana started blasting... it intensified the spirit in the room. Disney was inspired by God.

Sincerely,
Elder Allen




Teaching English Classes






First District Conference in Ft. Dauphin

Sam on beach for p-day

Cool pic of Ft. Dauphin

Elder Shelby Asleep