Monday, October 31, 2016

"Bagoas" Sam in Mada

This week was transfer week. We have two new guys in our house. Elder Bingham is from Utah, he has been in Mada as long as my companion, Elder Band. Then we also got a brand new trainee in the house. Elder Smith is from Texas. That is all the new news. I gave myself a haircut the other day, then had Elder Bingham clean up what I screwed up on. It looks more like it did when I went into the MTC.

Today is Halloween! I am way bummed though because they don't celebrate it here in Madagascar. And I am not allowed to dress up.

Our lessons are going great. We are beginning to see some progress with our investigators. I am slowly beginning to understand people a little better, so I have been playing around with talking to strangers in Malagasy a little more. Before I would just stand there not knowing what to say or even how to say anything.

No funny stories from this week, it was a pretty regular week. I had an old lady hit on me though. She called me "bagoas" which means handsome. I thought that was nice.

Also after a lesson a guy kissed my hand, which means he really appreciates me. I think our message really touched his heart. He also sang to me. like a whole song, it was like 2 min. long. It was awesome. He might have been a little drunk.

Madagascar is doing good. How is life back in America?
Thanks for the love and support.
Elder Allen

Elder Mccrary just went home i only knew him for one day but he was really cool 

Elder Tangarasi lived in my house last transfer but just went home as well. 

Elder Maluleka is the zone leader that i go on splits with all the time.
(he was the umbrella story guy.)

Monday, October 24, 2016

Weird Things Have Happened


Some weird things have happened this week. First off the work is coming along great. I am learning how to teach and lead most of our lessons, but I am still not very good at understanding people yet.

I saw everyone in my MTC district this week because we had to do VISA stuff, so that was fun. I got to go on a split with my old comp. and my new one. All three of us taught together, it was fun.

I saw a mini running with the bulls this week. We were just walking down a calm path and all of a sudden we looked up. Whenever a Rugby team wins they purchase a bull and run with it down the streets, then they kill it and eat it that night.

Another time during the week we were just walking and a drunk guy was having a hard time walking so I grabbed his arm and helped him stand. When I looked down at his hands and Ii noticed he had two thumbs. This man had six fingers on both hands.

Funny Story 1: I was in a lesson with a fairly new investigator who is a dad with a young son. During our lesson I started getting a little distracted because I noticed their little cat on the window. The guy's son was sneaking up on the cat and when he got close he put his right hand against the cat's neck and the window. My first thought was, that is probably uncomfortable for the cat. But then in about 5 sec. the little kid started punching his cat in the face with his left hand. I started laughing during the lesson. But then concealed it very quickly. I was the only one that could see this happening. I thought he was going to beat it to death. He then grabbed his tow truck and started driving it over the cats body. This kid was destroying this poor cat. Elder Band asked me after the lesson why I kept giggling. I guess I did not hide it very well.

Funny Story 2: One night Elder Band and I were making bread when all of a sudden we heard a loud noise outside our front door. We have a set of stairs in front of our door so I made the joke that our neighbor probably just fell down the stairs. Then we heard a loud moan. Shorlyt after the loud moan, someone ran full speed into our door almost breaking in. They tried a couple of times. Elder Band ran and locked the door while I grabbed the broom ready to fight. But after a couple of attempts of breaking in we heard another noise that sounded like he fell down the stairs again. This dude was drunk and at the wrong house. He kept falling down the stairs and trying to get into his house . He left shortly after. We think he was probably our neighbor coming home drunk and tried getting into the wrong door.

That was my week.
Thanks for all the love and support while I am here.
Elder Allen

Interviews with President

"Walking through the poopy water"

Monday, October 17, 2016

Adventures in Mada

This week has been pretty cool. I gave a blessing to one of the members in my ward. She was sick and her husband has not yet received the priesthood so they asked my companion and I to give her one. I had to do my part in English though because I am not too skilled yet.

 Also we have been meeting some really cool people that are very interested in the gospel. I am pretty excited to keep teaching them about the gospel and talk with them about God. My ward is pretty cool.  The coolest part is when the investigators come.  I have so many investigators.  I got 22 new investigators just last week.

No need to worry about my health anymore, I am all good now. I am becoming quite the cook lately. I cook all the time and I am getting really creative.  I make breakfast burritos with homemade tortillas, and banana bread that tastes really good. But I miss Mom's cooking so much ha, ha. I love American Food and candy.

The Rainy Season is upon us. The other day I was on a split with Elder Maluleka. We were walking down the streets of Swasonseht which is like a huge market that sells anything you could imagine. We were heading to our next appointment that was like 20 min. away and all of a sudden we started hearing something behind us that was getting louder and louder. We just stopped and I made the comment that the sound seemed like it was chasing us. Then out of no where it was raining buckets and hail the size of marbles. Had to take shelter in a near by store. We stayed there until the owner kicked everyone out. We decided that we were still going to try and finish the day and meet the people we planned to. Elder Maluleka and I were forced to walk in shin deep poop water on the streets. We were laughing the whole way to our next appointment. When we got there the guy was not there. When Elder Maluleka heard this he looked at me and faked cried really loud in front of this family of Malagasies that thought he was really crying. I was just laughing at our misfortune really hard. We tried going to two other people after that and they both dogged us. We almost just decided to go home at this point because we were dripping soaked and walking in poop every where... But we didn't. We went to our last scheduled family and finally got in. It was a very awesome and spiritual. They gave us their umbrella which was very nice of them.

Funny story: After that lesson we had to pee really bad, it was about 8:30 at night and we just ran over to a parking lot across the street. After my comp finished I went while he held the umbrella. At that moment a guy comes walking over and stands right in front of us. He was like the security guy of this parking lot. I just kept going while he said, tsy mety! which means, not okay! i really had to go so I just kept going until I was finished. It was funny because he was standing right in front of me yelling this looking right at my thing while Elder Malulaka was holding an umbrella for me. We were laughing so hard and just left right after I was done.

Good week.  I try to make every day of my mission fun.  I was called to Mada for a reason.  It gives me so much variety and change while doing such a repetitive thing.  Mada makes every day a new experience and I am so grateful for that.  I love it here.  I think at my year mark I am going to switch over to studying French.  A lot of the missionaries are doing that so we can go to the French speaking islands.  As I am getting better at this language the more fun and exciting teaching people becomes.  I can share more and more everyday what the spirit wants me to say.

Love ,
Elder Allen

I also found a real cool skate park in the city of Tana.

Monday, October 10, 2016

A "Vaza" in Madagascar

HI everyone,

Sam went off his Malaria Medication and the headaches went away!!!  He had a great week!  Thanks to all who joined with us in the family fast yesterday for Sam!  He appreciated your thoughts and prayers.  They are going to reintroduce the malaria medication to see if he gets the headaches again and we will go from there.  Thanks again for your concern.  Sam says this week was awesome! 


This week was a good week. I watched General Conference with my ward here in Ampefiloha on Sunday. It was in Malagasy, but I got to watch it again in English later so i am grateful for that. It was an awesome conference with wonderful messages.

On Wednesday, I went on a split with an Elder Freestone. He is an awesome, big, Japanese Elder. I love him.

He has only been here for a transfer longer than me so I was a little worried at first about how we were going to communicate with people, but it went pretty well actually. Being a white person I get a lot of attention and a lot of people feeling the need to let me know I am a  "Vaza" which just means foreigner. Elder Freestone on the other hand is a pretty big Japanese guy, so the whole day I heard the word "Buddha" more times then I can count. He just laughs and tells the kids that he is going to eat them and they run away crying.

An update on the language: it is getting better. I have good days and bad days with it. Sometimes I can teach almost a whole simple lesson on my own. Other days I cant say a simple sentence to save my life. Those days I get a lot of blank faces and people saying, tsy mazava... which means not clear or I don't know what you are trying to say.

I love Madagascar and the people here!! It is so fun to go around talking to random, really interesting people everyday. This is probably one of the most exciting, awesome,  yet; uncomfortable, weird two years of my life.

I love and miss the lot of you.
Elder Allen

Pictures from the Famadiana (dancing with the dead)

Monday, October 3, 2016

Learning New Traditions in Madagascar

Not a lot happened this week because I had to stay at home most of the days or come home early from headaches but even so there is still stuff to tell you because I am living in Madagascar.

On Saturday I went to a Famadihana which is a weird tradition here where they dig up their dead ancestors and dance with their bones above their heads. Then they wrap the body in cloth and rebury them. We were invited by a member who had a little baby son pass away five years ago and every five years they hold these Famadihanas. It was heartbreaking to see the mom cry as she saw her little babies body after five years in the ground but every one in Madagascar treats it like a celebration. I am eternally grateful that families are forever.

Most people drink for events and holidays so us being the only white guys caused many drunks to approach us and even try to pick pocket us but we were careful so it was all good. At the end of that day I saw a bunch of the drunk relatives get in a crazy fist fight and people just kept joining. That was fun to watch. Then we drove back in a taxi be which is a van bus thing. That was a good day.

General Conference is not until next Sunday for me. We get to watch it in English at the mission office so that is pretty cool.

I hope you guys are doing good back home. Thank you everyone who writes me, I am very grateful for the love.
Elder Allen