Friday, April 6, 2012

Week 96

Hello Family,

One day this week, we were using the GPS; to find a member’s house and we get to this pretty nice house and we think some Muslims live there but the GPS said these members did. So we knock and this kid about 9-10 years old comes out and we ask him if this member lives here in Portuguese and he has a tough time understanding. He then proceeds, in English, "No these people don't live here" and we ask him where he is from and he says " Canada" and I ask what city and he says "Winnipeg" and if you are from here you wouldn't know of that city. So we leave and the next day we decide to talk to his parents. So we go back. And we start talking to the family in English. They all studied in Canada and learned English. There is a father, mother, and 2 sons. They are a golden family.

Something I forgot to say last week. Not yesterday, but the week before in sacrament meeting, we were singing "How Great Thou Art" and in some parts this women and some others were throwing in some solos and singing extra notes. At the end of the 3rd verse, the elders were laughing and Elder Smith had to leave since he was laughing so hard. It was so funny. People who already don't know how to sing, busting some solos. Mozambique nossa terra gloriosa!

We met this member at a school to get to know his house and oh boy did we walk. I would say 4-6 miles of walking. He said "It's a little far" and we just started to walk and walk and walk. We walked for like an hour and a half. I don't even know if we were in our area or not. Ha-ha. But we had some good exercise though.

I have a question. Mom, do you want me to call on Easter or mother’s day. If I call on mother’s day, I go one like 2 weeks after but it's up to you.
Well that's about it. Have a great week.

 I love you all Elder Sirrine

Week 95

Hello family,

Things here in Mozambique are going well. These past few weeks have been kind of slow. The work is going well. We have been working a lot with the members helping them with family night, reading the Book of Mormon and all that good stuff. We do have some good investigators going well and hopefully in the next few weeks we can have some good old baptisms. But we will see what happens.

This past week, we were at a members house and Elder Smith was asking her some questions to get to know her a little more and he asked "do you have a boyfriend" and she said "yeah I do" so he started to ask some more questions. We got some fun stuff said to us. What we learned is he is an American, named George, was a missionary who passed by here a year ago. It was so funny to hear the responses. Ha-ha

This past week, another Elder who goes home with me, Elder Chamberlain, who is the tri-cities region of Washington, is flying all the way to Seattle with me. Yep, I fly from Mozambique to home with someone. Score for us. We are going to have some fun on the way home. I am going home with 8 other elders and we separate in London. I was supposed to go home with 17 (13 Americans and 4 Africans) but they split us up. 4 Americans and the 4 Africans go home before us and we will have fun coming home. Ha-ha!

There was something else that was pretty funny. We were walking around to go to a lesson and this drunken guy that came up and me being me, I started to talk to him, kind is of provoking him. And sometimes he would look at me, staring at me then he would call me, in English, "duck" and he would start cranking up and it was so funny. Now the other elders call me "duck". Ha-ha

That's about it. Not a whole lot of excitement this past week. Well have a good week and I love you all

Elder Sirrine

Week 94

Well, what a crazy week this past week. The work this week has been a slow process and health wise, it has been a dozy. So last week, Elder Miller started to get flu like symptoms, weakness, headaches that kinds of stuff. Then later in the week, Elders Colvin and Smith start getting the same things but worse. Then it hit me. On Friday after a lesson I just got a wave of sickness over me. So all 4 of us were sick with a virus or something. Saturday morning we all slept in because of how sick we were. Oh yeah. Friday night on the way home we see these big clouds coming towards us and we thought "oh great". As we get near home it starts pouring down rain like buckets of water hitting us. So we run to this little shack and we are covered by metal as the rain is coming down. So we wait for like 30 minutes and the rain calms down and we walk home. We get home and we learn the others room has a leak and it got water over everything, their beds, scriptures, I mean everything and we had no power. Our room was fine and so they grabbed cushions and slept on the floor in our room that had mo energy because the power was gone. So 4 grown wet sweaty men sleeping in a room with no air conditioner. It might have been one of the worst nights ever.

I was thinking of some stuff I want to do when I get home. I want to go to Seattle, ride the ferry, and go to a Mariners game. I also want to go to the Woodland Park zoo and Northwest Trek. I know I have to get my wisdom teeth pulled out and I was thinking it could be done the Monday after I get home. But if it has to be done right after I get home, it’s no big deal.

That’s about it, this week was very boring. Have a good week and I love you all

Elder Sirrine

Week 93

Hello family!!!,

This past week I got who is most likely my last comp before I go home. His name is Elder Smith from Tucson, Arizona and he is in the military. He is a sniper and has served a tour in Afghanistan, so he is pretty hardcore. 3 of the 4 people living in our house go home with me (elders Sirrine, Miller, and Colvin who is also military). Elder Smith is in his 13th transfer and so our house is full of veteran missionaries. T-3 is going to change. Before my comp got here from Tete, I walked with a Luis. He is the newly called branch mission leader and was able to walk with me Thursday and Friday. It was a good time.

This past week was alright. On Friday, we lost our best investigator, Jaime. He told us he had unfortunate news that his dad didn't want him to come to our church and that he had to continue going to the Catholic Church with the family. So it was a bummer but in the end we did find a new investigator that could have some potential, Laura.

Last p-day, elder Astle (who has been in Maputo for like a year) knew where a really good burger joint was and so we went, and it was so good. It was pretty expensive but it was so worth it. When you would bite into the burger, the smoky flavor of a good burger was in your mouth and the fries were great. So well worth it. We went to another Chinese restaurant that was alright but I had to use the bathroom a ton because of it. I don't plan on going back there anytime soon.

Oh yeah. Last week we got on a bus with all the elders, I was the last person to get on the bus so I was stuffing in and I had my arm smashed by the closing door. I then to proceed to take my arm out and I pull it out and I think I broke the door. Ha-ha. But my arm is fine by the way.

So I have been trying to make the house somewhat better looking by purchasing some plants on the side of the road and planting them here at home. So I brought some home and in the morning I planted in some places right outside of our house. Soon after we all leave to teach and by the time we get back, the plants were gone because someone had stolen them. Yes, a mozambiquan stole our plants. They resorted that low and stole plants. I was pretty mad about it.

Other than that, that’s it. I love you all. Have a good week.

Elder Sirrine

Week 92


Good news for you all. We have an excellent member here in T-3. This guy has a 100% home teaching record and knows where every member lives from our branch. He is the only member in all of Mozambique to accomplish this. He even brings people presents, in fact the last present he brought to a members house was a Bowie knife. Isn't that great? He is very nice; he's always smiling and he laughs at everything. He loves making sure we're safe and passes by our house every morning and every night making sure we have food and water. His favorite service activity is cleaning and he's so detailed that he'll take your stuff home to take care of it. Remember the knife? Well, it and his mother have a very friendly relationship. Also, he's super healthy. He loves to drink water and he carries around a bottle with him just in case someone gives him some. He definitely shows his love, and in fact he always wants us to get close with him so he can introduce us to his friend 'Bowie'. So things are really good here. Can't you tell?

So here at our house we have a place, not a hole, to put our garbage. Every once in a while we burn it so we can pile trash on it again. Yesterday, after church, we decided to burn it. There was a mattress that had been eaten and chewn through by rats that had to go. So after the fire started, we put the mattress on the fire to burn. The mattress is a big foam pad with covering. So we thought it would burn pretty small. Oh, we were wrong. I am already inside and I hear "Hurry, get water!” I look outside and I see the mattress in engulfed by the fire. The fire was as tall as the wall here. We even heard our metal gate popping and moving from the heat. So we fill up buckets of water and try to put the fire under control. We are filling up water buckets and running to put the fire out. We finally got it under somewhat of a control. Just think there is tons of black smoke from the mattress and the garbage. We let the pile of stuff keep on burning. After a few minutes this one black guy comes up and says stuff like "You're poisoning us, the smoke kills" blah blah blah. It doesn't make sense. Every other person in this neighborhood, even this country, does the same thing. Here there really are only 2 ways of getting rid of garbage. Either a hole or you burn it. They have a garbage service here but not where we live. But the fire was fun!

Yesterday, the Maputo district had district conference. We were told to get to he church by eight because that's when we had to go to Matola. Matola has a really big amphitheater and its right next to T-3 and the city of Maputo. And of course we get there and only one member is there. After like an hour more people get there and the bus to take us isn't there. After a huge mess and lots of waiting, we piled onto the bus and went to Matola where we got to met Elder Soares, from the area presidency, who recognized me from the conference we held in Beira back in November. The amphitheater was very well taken care of and was great for the members to see what the church here in Maputo looks like.

This week we got the names of some family members of one of our newly baptized members, Maria, who I've mentioned before. That was the first time I've received names to send to the temple for ordinance work.

Also, we have an investigator named Zito who finally acknowledged his own responsibility in the gospel he's learning. He told us that he has a choice to make now or really that he only has two choices. We hope he'll do what's right.

Also, this week my companion, the lovely Elder Bradford, and I got to work with reactivations hardcore his week. We did some work! We've already helped bring back several people and they came to district conference yesterday.

Well, that's about it. I love you all. Have a good week.

Elder Sirrine

Week 91

Hello everyone in the Promised Land!

Things are going good here in T-3. The work just keeps going on. We have been working a lot with the branch president. He has given a lot of people that we need to reactivate and so that will be keeping is busy. Yesterday at church, President and Sister Spendlove came to church. It was raining here so not a whole lot of people came. During the classes, President Chamba came up to us and asked if we could help with the primary. There was no problem with it. So we get to the classroom and the teacher had put a movie in. I thought it was a church movie so it was whatever. But it ended up being a movie about Christmas. It was all in English. During it, President and Sister Spendlove came in. After, Sister Spendlove, who doesn't really speak Portuguese, said "Well that was a good movie. What are you teaching English"? President asks "Are there no subtitles in Portuguese". It's not like the little kids would have been able to read them.

We had a funny thing happen. We have rat problems and so we needed a way to get rid of them. So we found and bought a kitten for 50 meticais. That is like 2 dollars. At home it was freaking out. The next night we see a rat in the kitchen. So we put the kitten there. It did nothing. Later that night, my companion, Elder Bradford, found out the kitten had fleas. So we take it outside and we give some random guy a new kitten for free. Now we have to be men and hunt some rats. Wish us luck.

We traveled about for hours on Saturday trying to find people. That is our travel day. We have people who live far away in Zimpeto and Kongolote. We teach like 2 lessons and that's it. But there are members there. We found a member who lives the teachings of another church. So we talked to her. If you were already baptized in our church, and then if you go to another church and live its teaching, you get excommunicated. It's considered apostasy. She said she would leave the other church and come back to ours. We are giving her a month to come back and leave the other church. If she doesn't come back, she is a goner.

So we had zone conference last week. We had to go into the city. We had a Book of Mormon class on more proof why it is true. If you look at the English, it's not real English. The Book of Mormon was written in Egyptian and eventually in reformed Egyptian with a Hebrew background. That's what Nephi and they were taught. Written in Egyptian and thought in Hebrew. Cool stuff.

The church hired people to fix the church. The energy got fixed and there were little farms on the church grounds. The hired man took out the entire farm and the weeds and is going to put grass, trees, plants, and rocks down. This is the same people who take care of the nice real looking chapels in Beira and Manga. So he will do nice to the chapel.

So what's the news on the school stuff?

That's about it. Have a good week. I love you all.

Elder Sirrine

Week 90

The work here is going good. This past week the area has gotten better. We have been finding new people to teach. We are working with the branch president, President Chamba, on how we can help the branch more. He gave us work to do and we are going to do it as best we can. I don't know what to say about my comp. It seems sometimes we get along but at other times we don't. He is kind of down on himself a lot and I don't even know why. I live with a Vegan, a vegetarian, and my comp is lactose intolerant and is trying to eat meat. But I'm still going strong and being a man. It's kind of hard to live here with these people. Life is so bland I am not really enjoying the work right now. I heard a certain Elder here when I was in the shower talking about the faults I have. Why would you do that? Talk to me first. Good grief. I am fed up with a lot of stuff right now. Just three and a half months and I am home.

So we had a great lesson with a newer member that is 60 years old. We were talking about temples. We tell her that her and her dead husband and three dead kids can be together forever and she starts pouring her eyes out. Both of us thought "No one has ever taught her that." She keeps on saying "Thank you". Once she stopped crying she told us of some dreams she has had. She said since her husband died, she hasn't really thought of him. She loved him. And after her baptism, she said "My husband has come to me in my dreams. She never told us what he has said but she wants to send the names of her dead family members to the temple so in about a year they can be sealed in the temple. It's amazing to actually see when someone loves another person here. It’s not common.

We are working with another couple, Armando and Fatima. They aren't married but Armando is the type of person that gets things done. So we talk to them about marriage and how they have to be married in order to be baptized. He tells us ''I was worried about that, what about parties and lebolo". Leola is pretty much the dude pays the girls dad in order to start living or marrying her. It’s a big thing here and sometimes you pay tons of money for this. It's the biggest factor in stopping marriages here. So we told him he doesn't have to do lebolo and if he wants a party, it doesn't have to be right at the wedding. The most important thing is getting married. We made a goal for the first week in March, they should be married by then and the Saturday after, they can be baptized. I actually think this wedding might happen. Armando actually makes good money.

So we teach a Zito. He is a tennis player that played in the African X games that happened here in Maputo. I don't know how far he went in it, but he is a cool guy.

So I dug a hole for the first time since I was in Magoanine. It was so hot I drank almost 3 liters of water in like 2 hours of digging. It wasn't a super deep hole but it works. Also, while in a chapa this past week, going to our farthest area, we see this huge storm cloud and we think “There is a storm coming". Within seconds, the wind picks up all this sand and it's like a tornado of sand. No matter where you are, you are hit by sand. T-3 is like Magoanine, just full of sand. Within like 5 minutes it's pouring rain. Once out of the chapa, we are soaked. We went to a really crappy member’s house who argued with us about America. Use less lesson.
Well that's about it. I love you all

Elder Sirrine

Week 89

Things here are going pretty good. The new area....well there is a lot to be done. We only have like 4 investigators so we are working on getting more. T-3 has a really bad rep here on the mission. There have been hundreds of crappy missionaries here that have done lots of bad things here. So the area and the branch here are down the drain. My comp is Elder Bradford. He is from Allen, Texas which is near Dallas. He is in his sixth transfer. I think this is the only transfer we will be together. He has been here 3 already. We teach a whole lot of sack members here to try and have them come back to church. I am kind of stressed out about everything. I need to rely on the Lord more and not on me.

So I had a very..... interesting visit to a hospital. So I have had stomach problems for my whole mission and I have this bad cough. We thought I could have asthma. We bought an inhaler to see if it would help. It didn't get better. So we decided to call Sister Spendlove to see what we should do. She says we should go to this private clinic, ICOR, and she would meet us there the next day. So the next day we go and catch a chapa that took 90 minutes to get there. We get there do some paperwork. And pretty much here is a summary of what happened: An x-ray taken of my lungs, I get my blood taken, and I pooped into a little plastic cup. Yes, I did all these things. I had to get test done. I got the results the same day and nothing is wrong with me. The doctors were a little confused. These were doctors from all over the world. I got some medicine to help make the things go away. I am feeling better already. I don’t want to go back. I am just amazed at the love of Sister Spendlove. She was there and left and even brought us food to eat. There are not a lot of missionaries who can say they hung out with the mission president’s wife for a few hours.

We were at a market this past week. We saw some stuff from korondaros, or the witch doctors. They have all this herbal "medicine" and stuff. It was weird to see. I did not feel good there at all. We also met Luis there. He walked with Elder Masterson, my second comp, for a few weeks before I was with Elder Masterson. He still knew who I was after 25 months of not seeing him. Some guy told us he thought we were jokes and we were here just to have sex with the women here and have babies. We made sure he knew what our real purpose was. I got kind of fed up with him.

 We also had a rat hunt. Well, my comp was who killed him. I was in the corner with a mop, acting like a little girl. I hate rats. They are so nasty. My comp felt bad for killing it but I was sure happy when he did.

That's about it. I love you guys and have a good week.

Elder Sirrine

Week 88

Hello everybody,

Well I don’t really know what’s going on at home. No emails. It’s a little wack. I think I will have to cry myself to sleep this week.

Ha-ha. There is not a whole lot to say this week. I learned that a few weeks ago when it was pouring, it was a typhoon. Yep I worked through a typhoon on my mission. Not a whole lot of people can say that.

I am finally back in Maputo. Well, I work right outside of the city.

T-3 is like Manga to Beira. I took a 16 hour bus ride from Beira to Maputo. I left at 4 in the morning and got here at about 8 pm. For about 6 hours I was alone. Another Elder coming down from Beira with me, got off in Maxixe in the province of Inhabane. So it was very weird to be alone. In 20 months, it was my first time really alone.

Awkward!!!! The area of T-3 is..... How can I explain it.... pretty messed up. It has been run over by hundreds of missionaries who didn’t care about here at all. There are so many problems. I am a little stressed about it. I don't know what to do. There is a lot of gossip here. I wonder why President Spendlove put me here to finish my mission.

That’s about it. Have a good week and I hope some emails next week.

Elder Sirrine

Week 87

I wish I could have snow and ice hear. All I got here is unbearable hotness and monsoon rains all the time. Not fair!!! Ha-ha. But those are still some crazy stories. Ha-ha.

But it is transfer. I am getting transferred back down to Maputo to the branch of T-3. I will finish my mission there. I will be with an Elder Bradford from Dallas Texas. I got to know him a little bit. Instead of taking a bus, I get to fly. There was a major rainstorm and flooding that wiped out a major bridge. And now we can’t take a bus down there. I get to fly for the first time since I got to Mozambique. I will tell you more when I get there.

I am pretty sad to be leaving Munhava. My first 2 transfer I really wanted to leave from here. I wanted to go home. I didn’t like my comp, we hardly taught, and the work sucked. I think it was the down point of my mission. Then my comp got transferred and Elder Homer got here. That’s where everything got up. 6 weeks later, the work is great, we have 14 people marked for baptism, there coming to church, I'm happy. Just as the work was getting bad, I wanted to quit and go home, I get help from the lord. Elder Homer changed my attitude. I actually wanted to out to work. I didn't dread going out to work every day. He and I may not be very common, but he has helped me a lot in these past 6 weeks. I don't want to leave Munhava. I love it. It is the biggest success story of my mission. How a missionary is in the slums and how he got taken out with help from the Lord and a missionary.

I had some funny stories happen. At a lesson, we were sitting outside. There drunk neighbor started to come over, and he stops, bends down, and does that cross thing that the Catholics do. I tell him “If you want to talk to us, you don't have to do the cross. We are just normal people that are here helping mozambiquan." Then he started crying. So the blue came out in me and I actually felt bad. I got him to stop crying. After he left, the people we were teaching explains his whole family abandoned him a few years ago, and now he is alone. He has no family near and since then he hasn't been the same.. We went on an adventure. We were using the GPS and looking for a member. With the rain, there is mud and puddles all over the place. So we go walking all over the place. By the time we are done we are filthy dirty. It was pretty funny.

We taught an investigator the word of wisdom. She had problems with tea and coffee. After, she said "I will not drink anymore of this stuff.” I was like "sweet!” We also taught another investigator "21" and "war" with cards. Every time she would lose her say pretty much "crap" and whenever she would win she would say "what a blessing". I thought it was funny and as we were leaving, you have to cross a bridge over a little ditch. As I was leaving, I break the bridge. You only have to take 2 steps at the max. Hahaha. We are going to help fix it this week.

We ran into a place that said "Bairro dos Americanos" or " the neighborhood of the Americans". It was painted on a sign. I took a picture of it.
Well that’s it; wish me luck on my flight to Maputo. I love you all. Please don’t forget about the school stuff Mom

Elder Sirrine - The one and only

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Week 86

The doctor dude is a missionary from South Africa. He covers 12 missions in southern Africa. He goes to each mission to give seminars and see the mental health of all the Elders. So he traveled all over Mozambique, giving seminars. He explained each color and each type of person is one of these colors. There is red-power, blue-Emotions, yellow-fun, and white- more shy and whatever type of attitude. The title of the book he wrote is called: The Color Code by Taylor Hartman. He has a website. I would suggest looking at the book and the website. We got a challenge from our mission president too. He gave us the challenge of reading the book of Mormon in one transfer, or six weeks. It starts a week from this Thursday. I would like to give you all the challenge of doing that. It's like 13 pages a day.
I am going to do it.
The weather has been alright. Not really hot but not really cold.
Yesterday it rained a lot. That’s about it. I think after this transfer, I am leaving Beira. Manga and Munhava are neighborhoods of Beira but still part of the actual city of Beira. I am in my third transfer in Munhava. I spent 4 in Manga so I am in my 7th transfer in the Beira area. I spent 4 in Chimoio and 2 in Maputo. So far 11 transfers out of Maputo. Chimoio is not a whole lot to the north, more to the west of Beira, by Zimbabwe. I think I will go to Tete or Nampula which are way north, or just go to Maputo to die. (just kidding!)We get transfers next Monday. So I will know then.

So we were walking with a member and he told us that there might be a house for us to live in Munhava. So we go to the house and it is a really nice house. We saw the outside and we looked in through the windows. The house had tile floors and the rooms look big. We have to wait for Elder Bonini to get back from Marromeu to see if we can get it. He is the first counselor in the mission presidency.
While at the church, a member, Nicole, came for the piano class my comp was teaching. And I was right outside the door on a chair. She said “I don’t want to go in. It’s like hell inside". It gets really hot inside the church. I thought it was really funny how an African understands sarcasm. Ha-ha

There was also a smart aleck we taught. Ha-ha. We were talking about God in a lesson, so I am asking who God is. There are 4 people there.

So I ask the first three and they say he is our father. I ask the last, Linda, who he is. She says our father and I tell her she can’t say that and that she has to say something else. So she says our uncle. You could hear the sarcasm in her voice. Ha-ha.

I went on a division with Elder Anderson this past week. We were given a coke and an orange fanta. We mixed the two drinks and surprisingly, it tasted pretty good. Ha-ha. We also found someone who collects money. He has all these bills from different countries taped under glass. I tried to buy some but he said no. I am kind of tempted to give him a one dollar bill to put it up there. If I do, I will get a picture.
I have been having some serious problems with my stomach and worms but things are getting better…I hope!
Have a good week. I love you all.

Elder Sirrine

Week 85

First things first. Mom, can you update the blog. I have had some...... complaints from people. haha. Just think, I will be home in like four and a half months. So no more epmty nest. ha.

We had some trainings. One was with President Spendlove, and the second was with Elders Hartman and Callahan. Elder hartman is a psicolgist and has written a book on colrs and your personality. I will get the book title for you guys and its a must buy. Just to let you know I am a Blue mixed with Red. And I am not crazy. The thinng is, is that it's so true. And after, they were giving some interviews and I just talked to there wives for a while. A Blackner married the Hartman’s niece. So they might know Bishop Blackner.

I got a good buy last week. We were walking around and I saw an Arizona Diamonbacks hat. It’s a brand new hat which is normally like $30. But I got it for 50 metacals. This is less than $2. So I got a really good deal on it.

Last week, we bought sting ray from the beach and ate it. We cut off the skin, battered it, and then fried it. It surprisingly tasted really good. It had the taste of fish, but barely. It really tasted like chicken. I will send you some pictures of it. I would highly suggest eating it.

Nicole, a member in Munhava, got a puppy. It is so cute. Its name is boxer. I was playing with it and it bit up my arm. Ha-ha

For one of the trainings, we were going to go to a restaurant. Its lisboeats. And the zone conference went a little over. And the zone leaders had to call to tell them we would be late. And I guess the lady got really mad. So once we got there, she just freaks out on us and is yelling. I just stayed outside and let the zone leaders take care of it. Portuguese women can get very mad and things can start flying. Ha-ha. But they did turn on ESPN for us and there were hunting shows on.

So we had a very good Sunday. We had a frequency of 115, 10 investigators, and 4 people who we contacted earlier in the week came. So it was a very good Sunday for us. That day I was feeling really sick. So I thought "great, going to be a long day". There was only like 15 at the start of the meeting. We had no investigators there. I was sick, mad, and fed up with people. But by the end of the meeting, we had lots of good things.

We met a Zimbabwean whose name is "anyway". Yeah its " anyway". Africans give the weirdest names to people. Ha-ha

Well that’s it. Until next Monday. I love you all

Week 84

Did you get an I-pad from Santa Claus? Well I am glad that you are getting Michelle to school. I can’t wait to go. New Years Eve was very loud. I tried to go to sleep before Midnight, and I almost did it.

Midnight rolled around and all these fireworks were going off. So I got to see the New Year roll in. Just so you know, my P-day will be on Tuesday next week because we have a psychologists elder dude coming from south Africa and we have a meeting with him as a zone on Monday.

So FYI.This week we got some new friends. There has been this dog just staying at our house for months. Then she left and was gone for a few days. While studying, we here a dog whining. And a woman is putting puppies in the garage here at the house. And now we have Puppies here.There are nine of them. Every once in awhile we give her food but we try not to because she is not our dog. If we give her too much food, than she will always stay here. We do our best.

This week we kind of felt like the sons of Mosiah. Yesterday, while working, this drunk said something about white people. There is tons of racism here. Africans dont like white people a whole lot and they dont like God a whole lot either. We get called whiteys all the time, made fun of all the time. SO I tell this guy, "what about white people" and he flips out. He is saying "white people don’t belong, we aren’t in bondage to your race anymore, get out of here you piece of crap (but really says the s-word in Portuguese)" and just tons of horrible things. I was so mad and never felt so bad in my life. We just took it and kept on walking. I was so close to saying something about how they were sold as slaves or in bondage to the whites for hundreds of years. But a representative of Christ shouldn’t say that. So I didn't

We went to the universal church twice last week. My comp had never gone before. So we went twice ha-ha. Just doing the same putting devils in people like the last time. The universal church is not a church, it’s a show. They do everything they do just to get attention and money. They take the Lord's name in vain and mess with it. How can you call that a church? DO you think the Holy Ghost resides in places where they yell? I think not.

While walking at night one time, I see this big old thing climb up this wall and I say "Elder Homer, did you see that" and he says "no".

The thing climbs back over the fence to our side. We get closer and it’s this baboon that's tied up. Elder Homer had never seen a wild one before so we take videos and pictures. That same day, we just took tons of pictures of the industrial zone of Beira because it’s our area.

It was fun. We also ran into the old branch president of Munhava that was excommunicated for starting his own church. We are supposed to be nice to him still.

We found an old inactive member that actually is coming back to church.

His name is Holindo, but he is living with his girlfriend. He says he has plans to get married. He actually seems like he would. They both work and they have an A/C unit in their house which most people don’t have. So we are going to work a lot with them.

In the past 2 weeks, we have had to drop 6 investigators. These people have not showed their desires so we are not going to waste our time with them. If you don’t show a desire, we are not going to sit with them. Not worth it.
We have found a person who has a basketball court at their house. We went there and the person wasn’t there but people in her family were so we played a few games of basketball with them.
I was also told not to take pictures by a drunken guy. He told me I can’t take a picture of the poorness here. What a joke.

Well that’s about it. Have a good week. Remember I will email you on Tuesday not Monday. I LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!!
Elder Sirrine

Week 83

This week has been a good week. The really only thing is that Christmas happened. On Saturday, we went to the Boninis house. The zones of Manga and Beira got together there. At first we had a white elephant like we do at home. I got this weird donkey fluffy toy thing. Her name is Kimmy by the way. Then sister Bonini made us all food. There was beans rice, cakes, just tons of food. I got so full. Then for the rest of the day, we just chilled at their house with the other elders. I would say about 30 Elders were there in total. It was a good turnout. That morning we also did some service at a members house. We helped build a fence. It was about 100 degrees and 100 percent humidity while doing it. I was sweating like a dog.

This week we plan on finding lots of new people. I don’t have a lot to say because I called this week. I would like pictures of Christmas. Have a good week I love you all-

Elder Sirrine - The one and only

Week 82

Remember, I plan on calling you the Monday after Christmas, kind of like we did last year. I call you to let you know when I can talk. Then you can call me back and we can talk for a little bit. Just use the number I call you with. And remember the country code is 258. I am buying a sim card today and I dont have the number. 100 dollars should be plenty. It was last year. On saturday, the Beira and the Manga zones will be getting together to have a christmas party at a couples house. On sunday, we still have to work like its a normal day. We only have a hour of church on sunday. So I was thinking we can still try and visit a few people. Hopefully it wont be too dangerous.

So this was a really, really, really hot week. December is one of the hottest months in mozambqiue. December, January, and February. The second you walk outside, you are already starting to sweat. I carry 3 liters of water with me. Almost every day, I am drinking almost all of three liters of it. I have been in some hot places, but with the humidity here in Beira, you just start dripping water. It’s really crazy how wet you are. You get home at night, and you take off your shirt, and ring it out, and your sweat comes dripping off. When that happens, you know you sweat. And when you drink three liters of water in a day, it’s pretty bad. With the humidity, this comes with the gift of lots of rain. Last Friday, there had to be a tropical storm pass by here. Beira was flooding, people’s houses were, and everywhere was covered in water. We just got soaked. There were literally buckets of water pouring on our heads from the rain. I think it was one of the wettest days in my mission. It was bad! At an investigators house, they put cement in their patio. The guy, who did it, did it bad. He made it like a slant. So you have the entrance to her house and the cement leads in a slant to her front door. It’s not a very smart idea. We get to the house when it’s pouring and they are taking out buckets of water from the house. We helped. But it’s weird how the worker did it that way. Not a very smart idea on his part. At the same house earlier in the week, Elton, the little brother, got rocks and was throwing them at the little birds flying around. Ha-ha.

Last P-day, we had a bask again at the beach again with the 2 zones. We had steaks, garlic bread and rice. We did it because of transfers. My old comp, Elder Sessions, was transferred down to Maputo. I got a new comp, Elder Homer. He was serving up in Nampula and is from Utah. After a very long 28 hour bus ride for him, He finally made it here to Beira. He is a very good worker. We have been kind of slacking here in Munhava, but with him, hopefully we can get working and having some good work done here in Munhava. That’s something I need to change. Get more work done here in Munhava.

There is a member here in Munhava who was born and raised in Zimbabwe. I think I might have mentioned here before. Her name is Nicole. So we were at her house the other day, and we taught her some American slang. For example, what a "kneeslapper" is. You know when something is not really funny you say " that’s a kneeslapper" and hit your knee. We also taught her the phrase "do you want a cookie". While talking, we would use those jokes with her.

While waiting for my comp to get here from Nampula, I walked with Joaquim, our branch mission leader on Thursday. It was a good day. We had some good lessons and I felt the spirit. It was great to walk with someone who actually spoke better Portuguese than me. Elder Sessions didn’t really speak all too well. I spoke a lot better than he did. Elder Homer speaks pretty well for being in his 5th transfer. He speaks a lot better than I did in my 5th transfer.

On Saturday, Elder Anderson was waiting for his comp to get from Tete. So in the afternoon, we walked with him for a little. They had a branch Christmas party. While waiting for it to start, they played Disney songs sung in Portuguese. I really like them. I will have to show you all the songs when I get home even though you won’t understand them. Ha-ha. Good times!

Well that’s about it, Have a good week. I love you all. FELIZ NATAL PARA VOCES. I would like pictures from all of you.--

Elder Sirrine - The one and only

Week 81

21 BABY!!!!!!! Can you tell Aunt Karen that I will have her in my prayers. For the call, I was thinking we can do the same thing we did last year. I will call get a sim card here, call you. Then you call me back with a phone card you buy. I was thinking we can talk on the 26. I was thinking I will call at like 8pm here on the 26th. That’s my idea.

So this has been a good working week in Munhava. We found 13 new investigators this week. Most of them were people that called us over, we gave them pamphlets, and remarked with them. They were in that new area we got I told you about a few weeks ago. We have had lots of success in that area. We also heard that an investigator that has a baptismal date ran away. Her just got up and left. People think he might be somewhere also in Munhava. No one really knows where he is. He is from the city of Quelimane which is up north. Hopefully he is ok.
So we started to teach a members family. The father is actually married. He got married in 1958. He fought for the Portuguese when the war of independence, and was drafted by Frelimo in the civil war. Frelimo is the group that won control to be the government. Most people don't get married but live with the person they are dating and have kids. The dad said "I don't know why they don’t get married. They are stupid. Marriage is a good thing". And they have a daughter who has a kid but not married that said "like me!” it was so funny. The dad is 68 years old but looks 35-40 years ole. They have a son who is like 42 but looks 25. It really weird how young they look.
We have another investigator. Her neighbor is like 8 and has Down syndrome. Most people here make fun of them for their disabilities, but the neighbor to him doesn't. The mom actually knows he has a problem. She treats him nice and shows him love. It’s truly amazing to see a mom who actually loves their children. It doesn’t happen a lot here at all. There is an inactive member, I think I have told you about him, but he has a son who lives on the road. The kid is 14. The dad, Matateu, is worried about him. He goes out almost every day to try and find him. It’s amazing to see parents who care about their kids.
At another member, we went there to talk to him. He is an old man. His name is Cimbal. We were talking to him about Matateu actually. He asked "is he skinny and ride a bike" and we say "yes". He then tells us “wait a second" and goes inside. We think he is getting a picture or something. He comes out with shoes and socks and says: where is his house". We tell him we don’t have time and we mark to show him on Saturday. We leave and we remember we already had something on Saturday. So we go back to unmark with him. As we get back, he is outside leaving to go find this guys house. It was so funny. He was going to look for this guy. Great man.
I almost forgot. We found DR.PEPPER here. There is a gas station that is based out of America and they sell them. We had lots of fun with them. AMERICA!!!!

Well that’s about it. I love you all

Week 80

I talked to the elders and they would love being able to go out to eat. So that would be great. They said they would love you forever and ever if you did that.

So we invited the Boninis over. They are that Brazilian couple that is serving here. We invited them over for lunch. We had fried chicken sandwiches and fries. We were talking and Elder Bonini said “yeah, in a year and 20 days, we go home. My mission is already over". That was a kind of you had to be there to think it’s funny. The Bonini's are so funny. Elder Bonini's birthday is the 9th of this month and mine is the 11th. So he was like “let’s have a beach bask to celebrate our birthdays. Only the best are born in December". Ha-ha so we are going to have a beach bask for my B-day. Ha-ha. Sister Bonini said she would make us all sweets on Christmas. NICE!!!!!
Riding a chapa this past week, I was sitting next to this young woman. All of a sudden she puts her head out the window and she throws up. Somehow, some got on her arm and says “I am not feeling too good. I got to leave." So she gets some paper, wipes her arm off, and leaves. It was really disgusting but I had to check that box of almost getting puked on. Ha-ha
To get from Shoprite to home, we catch a taxi. We go 3 and 3 to make it easy to get home. The two groups get in at the same time and we tell the drivers the first person to get to our house gets the full price and the second only gets half. SO they did a race. Taxi drivers were always crazy but when the race its worse. Ha-ha. Cutting off people, almost hitting others. But we won. The second driver still got paid the same price. It was really fun.
We have zone conference last week. We learned about how Mormon mentions the money system in Alma, is proof the book of Mormon is true. President Spendlove did a study on it. It was pretty much the same as the ancient Egyptians. There was no way Joseph Smith could have created it. President said “I have a PhD elders, and there is no way I could have even thought of it". Proof baby!!

We had Sister Spendlove come over and eat brownies with us. It was pretty cool. I love the Spend loves. I always make fun of them because I go home before them. By the end of their mission, they will have spent 5 years here. They served a 2 year mission here before. Presidents serve for 3 years.
I met my first Zambian this past week. He speaks, or tries, English. He asked us “where are we coming from" like " where are we from". Silly Africans, they try to speak English, but they don’t.
On a division with Beira 1, this old guy we were teaching, Antionio, lied. Before he told the missionaries he was 19, then I asked him how old he was and he said "100, I can show you my documents." it was so funny.

So yesterday we learned the old branch President of Manga 3, and likely current of Manga 1 died. President Mafuro. I don’t know how he died. This week the funeral will happen but I don’t know when. We will try and go.

Well have a good week. I love you all.

Elder Sirrine

Week 80

Just like the subject line says, I GO HOME SIX MONTHS FROM TODAY!!!!!!!!
So this has been a good week. We have been finding lots of new investigators. It’s amazing how people in Mozambique will listen to you. But really most of the time, they really don’t want to listen or do anything. But still we are able to sit with people. We got 5 new investigators this past week. So hopefully we will be able to work with them. We also marked a baptismal date with an investigator. His name is Renato. We marked him for January 14. So I am really excited for him. We had district conference this pas t weekend and he went to all the meetings that happened. So he is a champ.

Speaking of district conference, we had a surprise visit. Elder Soares, form the seventy and area presidency, was there. On Saturday morning, he had a special meeting with the missionaries. He mainly talked on how are calls were inspired of God to serve. We were called in the pre-existence to serve here in Mozambique at this time. He told us of how we were called here when you did your papers. You have the bishop’s interview. In it, he looks into your eyes, and after the interview, he writes down his impressions of you. Then it’s off to the stake president. He does the same thing the Bishop does. Then off to the missionary department of the church. There is this big room with a projector and a computer. Projected on the wall are your picture, the missions, the stuff the bishop and the Stake president wrote, and information about you. Then someone from the quorum of the twelve apostles or the first presidency comes in. He looks into the missionary candidates eyes. He gets to know you even though you are not there. He ten receives revelation on where you should go.
Here is my weekly report on Ana's little brother. So one day we get there. We sit down outside because the houses are too hot to sit in, and he starts throwing garlic and mango seeds at us. It was funny. Then Ana gets up and takes him inside and we are hearing " ow, ow, ow" for like 30 seconds, and some sobbing. Ana comes back out. We start talking to her and her brother opens a window and is like "suka!!" or dialect for " go away" or "nao quero" or " I don’t want too!!" in Portuguese for some reason. We hear him laughing. He then comes out with a little slingshot. He goes to this tied up goat out in the front yard. That’s a pretty common sight actually, tied up goats in front yards. Elton, the brother, is looking for rocks. He grabs one, puts it in his slingshot, and shoots the goat. The goat freaks out. Then he looks for another rock and does it again. After shoots it, he runs away laughing his head off. After a few times, the goat gets up n two legs like he is going to ram him. Elton freaks out every time he sees it and runs off then comes and does the same thing. It’s hilarious. He may sound like a brat, but he is so funny.
We ran into an investigators drunken dad at their house. So we just talk to him. He is explaining where he works. He like “you go here to left to the right, blah blah blah" Then he’s like " well completely forget, you just go here". Hahahah. It was funny. Elder Sessions and I just were cracking up.
We go to a member’s house, and we see this goat hanging upside died, with his throat gashed open. These people are goat farmers. So we just watched them skin it for a few minutes. They burn the hide and make it into type of food to eat. It’s kind of like a jerky you could say, but not at the same time.
WE had this really bad bridge to cross because we got lost in our area. I broke one part when we were crossing.
One of our new investigators parents are actually married. A majority of the people here just live with each other. But his parents are actually married. So we ask them why they are. And the husband actually said “because I love my wife". I was shocked by his response. I Thought he would say I don’t know or something. I was really surprised. But he’s a good guy though. We are trying to teach him too. We were shown his house by Itelvino, a member in our branch. We call him "Rhino man". He has a shave head besides a little patch in the front which butts out like a rhino horn. And he is pretty ripped too.
A member who was raised in Zimbabwe, who speaks English very well, told us what she wants to do. She is going to college to be an ambassador. She speaks English and Portuguese, is learning French and Arabic, and will learn to speak Chinese and Spanish. We asked her if she wants to work in Mozambique. Right away she said" No!” Lots of other Africans don’t like this country. But I think it is amazing what she wants do. She actually has a dream. She wants to do something with her life.
At another place, a person said “I don’t like the Catholics. They break the commandments. The bible says not to worship other idols, but they do. I think most people who go to that church don’t know what they are doing." I was actually surprised. This country is full of Catholics. Ha-ha
One last thing. PACKAGE!!!!!!! I got a package. It’s the one with the shirts, shorts and that stuff. THANK YOU MOM!!!!!!! I love you
I love you all. Have a good week.

Week 79

The school in the fall is what I want to do. So if you do that, I would appreciate it. Here they actually do have turkey but it’s really expensive. We were going to have a dinner with a mission couple but they are busy. So we are going to but a pumpkin and make pumpkin and make a pie with it. So we will be at least doing something for Thursday. I am grateful for everyone in the family and the support they give me. I really am grateful for it.
So the other day we had to catch a chapa home. Going to the stop to catch it, this guy tells me he needs to talk to me. But the chapa gets there. I tell him we got to go. So he’s like I'll get in front and you two get in the back. So we get on. Like 100 feet past, he tells the chapa to stop and gets off. He doesn’t say a single word. So he wasted it.

5 metacals for nothing. I think he was most likely drunk or a little crazy. But it was actually pretty funny. On the same chapa ride, we see the other 2 Munhava elders in another chapa in front of us. The guy who was collecting money in our chapa, tells the driver to hurry.

So our two chapas were racing each other to where we get off. Just to let you know, if you think chapa drivers are normally crazy, just wait till you go on one while it’s racing. Still fun and we won. HAHAHA!

So we tried a new pizza place last week. The pizza was alright but the service sucked. Another elder went there like 4 days before and it was 240 metacals. We go there and its 280 metacals. So in like days, the priced climbed up a lot. And it took forever to get the pizza. We won’t be going there again.

We had another fun incident with an investigators brother. We get there and he grabs this huge pole from somewhere. He runs over to the bathroom where another sister is taking a shower. He starts hitting it. You can hear the sister yelling at him to go away. He comes running past us with a stick, laughing his head off. He is so funny.His sister, the one we are teaching, Should be getting baptized December 10. She also has a little daughter. She is like a year and a half old. One time she walks out the door, see's us, freezes and has this funny look on her face, turns around, and walks back inside. It was so cute to see her do that and funny.

There was another funeral for our branch. I don’t know how it went because I was on a division with Elder Walker who walks in Beira 1. It was a good division. We taught some good lessons that helped them a lot.

I had to talk A lot because Elder Walker is only in his 2nd transfer.

But he’s doing well.

On another division that same week, we walked with the zone leader, Elder Peterson. At a house we acted like he was brand new and couldn’t speak the language. He was asking us how to say some words. I was barely able not to laugh. Cristina, the girl we were teaching, did not understand the joke. But it was so funny.

I love you all so much. I really am grateful for everyone. Have a good week.

Week 78

There are few people here in Mozambique who celebrates the holidays. Most can’t afford it. But those who can don’t have trees or anything like that. They just buy lots if food. Here, the bigger you are, the richer you tend to be. So that’s how they show if they have money. I think besides candy, something like crayons and coloring books would be great for them. I think they would enjoy that.
Well I hope Bella gets better. Has she gotten all her shots recently too? Kind of curious.

So this past Friday we went to a funeral. A member’s dad died. So he wanted another church to run it. But they never showed up. We were there to comfort but ended up we ran the funeral. So we all get in this truck with a huge bed. There's like 30 people. We go to the hospital to go pick up the body. The hospital has a morgue too. So we see the body. All the women just start howling and crying. It was a pretty terrible thing to hear in all truth. They then put the body in the truck. When we get back to our trucks there is like 100 people there now. I was in the very back right up against the tailgate. A member, Madasta, was sitting on the tailgate. I was right up against him. So we drive for like an hour to get to the cemetery at the cemetery, after the service, they put the coffin in the hole. It’s a tradition to have every person out dirt in the hole. So like a hundred people each threw a handful of dirt in the hole. It was just a hassle. All of it was. I hope I don’t go to another one.

Last week we went to a new restaurant. It’s called "Galo verde" or "green rooster" They have really good hamburgers and fries. It’s right on the beach. It was a really nice experience. The owner’s son lives in Portugal, and works at McDonalds. I had to talk to him about it of course with my experience with McDonalds.
So we had someone last week just show up to church. So she was like yeah, I want to learn. So we started teaching her. Her name is Maria. We will see how she goes.

We met someone’s cousin. Omar our second counselor in the branch presidency is from the Congo. So he speaks French. We passed by his house and his nephew, who is also from the Congo, was there. He started speaking French with us. The thing I actually caught a few words he was saying. It’s actually amazing how I understood a little.

So sometimes we cook a thing called Candy bread. Its pieces of bread dipped in boiling butter and condensed milk. Then you eat it. I don’t like to eat it. So I said no I am not going to eat it. The other 5 were trying to get me to eat it. After like 30 minutes, they out a few skittles on it. So I caved in and ate a piece of candy bread with skittles on it. Next time we make it, I will take a picture of it. I am pretty sure it’s a heart attack waiting to happen. Ha-ha.

So at Ana’s house, she is an investigator, her aunts friend was there. So was her like 4 year son. He is a little punk. He kept on interrupting us. And I was like can you be quiet. And he kept on saying " vou te dar porrato" or I am going to spank or thrash you. I was punked by like a 4 year old. But it was so funny. I couldn’t help but laugh. Ha-ha
So we have an investigator, Nando, who is a drunk. So is like his whole family. But for now he has stopped drinking. He is a very weak man. He stops drinking for like a week or two, and then starts drinking again. He has the drive to stop drinking, but due to all the temptations at home and his friends, he always falls back. So we pass by his house everyday to see how he is. Hopefully, he can stop drinking and live more in tune with the gospel. He is kind of the focus of our work right now.

Since it’s so hot here now, I am drinking like 3 to 5 liters of water a day. It’s been over 100 almost all week. Curse you mozambiquan weather. It’s just so hot here.
So our area was pretty much doubled. The other companionship in Munhava, one of the elders, Elder Finlayson, is the branch president. And so we wanted to help him a little bit. Our area was small, his was huge. He has a lot of responsibility with the branch, so we took over part of his area. I hope he can focus more on the branch now, and get that up and going, and we will do all this work...
So part of our area, this house has these 2 brand new puppies. We pass them everyday going to Nandos house. So we pet them and play with them. I want them to like humans, and not bite or bark like most other dogs here do. And I think I saw something for the first time. I saw a women give one of them food. I have never ever here seen any animal of any kind receive food. It was something really great to see.
Well that’s about it for now. I hope you all have a good week. I love you all. I would like pictures mom, of my " new guest room\old room'. Please...-

Elder Sirrine - The one and only

Week 77

Daylight savings time....... psssshhhhh... yeah right. This country doesn’t do anything like that. They don’t change, especially most of the people. Ha-ha.

So my comp is Elder Sessions. He is from Las Vegas. He was in my district in the MTC, one of the 14 with me coming here. He was one of the marines. This is our second transfer together. He likes to make everything go the way he wants, but I am trying to let him be in charge if it’s what he wants.

It’s getting flipping hot here. It’s in the 90 or higher everyday almost. Plus, it’s really humid here. But it did pour rain here 2 times last week. There is a big open poop sewer type of thing that goes through our area, and they had this big scooper machine. It had a big shovel on it. They were scooping out what the old poop and all this garbage in order to make it deeper for the rain. But when they scooped some out, the water already there filled it halfway up. There were all these little kids so amazed because of the machine. It was surprising they were actually doing something to help with the rains. So all week we have had to find new trails in order to get to people’s houses. We found allot, but we had a very wet few days.

Lest week an elder in the house bought some crabs. I was the only one we knew how to cook them. So they all wanted to learn how to cook. So I taught them. The crabs were still alive and in the water, they would wiggle for a second and then die. But they ended up being pretty good. It was food to eat something else besides beans and rice. Ha-ha. That’s really what I ate last week. Beans and rice all week. Ha-ha

So we were at a member’s house. Her little son brings out this pillow. The grandma comes running out, grabs the pillow, hit the little kid, shakes her head, and leaves. Ha-ha. It was so funny to see. The kid looks around, and then runs off and continues to play. Later during the lesson, her husband comes in. His name is Omar, who is also the second counselor in the branch presidency. He was talking to her and called her "love". It was the first time I have heard someone called love on the mission. It was great to hear.

We marked with some new people last week. We ended up walking like an hour to get to their house. We learn they don’t even live in our branch limits. They live in the branch of Manga 2. But we did walk on the main highway of Beira. I don’t think that’s very legal in the United States, but it was actually pretty fun.

With the rainstorms, we lost power. It was because an electricity pole fell over. But the electric company actually came the next day. They fix the pole. But they just taped all the wires. So they aren’t really the best people to fix the cables. But hey, we have energy now so I can sleep in the hot mozambiquan nights. Ha-ha

At an investigators house, she had this huge puddle in the front of the house. She has like a 3 year old brother. He runs out of the house naked, and starts playing in the water. He was rolling and just laughing his head off. His sister got really mad and was like "get over here, go put some clothes on". Then he ran off. Ha-ha. It was so funny.
In Munhava, there’s a cobblestone road. These two guys were kicking this ball back and forth, going down the road. One misses the ball, and this man stops it for him. The guy who missed the ball freaks out on him, and says" don’t touch our ball, blah blah blah". So he kicks the ball back to his friend who misses it too. This car comes honking his horn, runs over the ball. The car keeps on going. One starts running after the car. He never caught it. They were like " ha de pagar", or "he is going to buy us a new one". These were full grown men who acted like little kids. But that made my day. Ha-ha
We were actually told by a woman that she would have to see about being baptized. That was the first time I have heard that on the mission. But it was actually really great to hear that. Who would have known that someone saying no to baptism would be so nice? Ha-ha

Well that’s about it. I love you all and have a good week.--

Elder Sirrine - The one and only

Week 76

I can’t believe its Halloween again. I was staying at this house last Halloween, before I went to Chimoio. Time goes by so fast. Ha-ha if you want to send something for Christmas, little sweets for the kids would be awesome. Just do like you did with the last one, where you send a few things for the both of us. And something from the family, Letters would be sweet, and pictures. They are always good. Anything from you would be awesome. But it probably would be best to get it out by next week. The sooner the better.

So I met some Australians this past week. They were walking on the road, and stopped us. They told us that they were in Mozambique on vacation. Just so people know, DO NOT COME HERE ON VACATION!!!!!!!!!! Mozambique is not that good of a place. Trust me, it’s not fun here.

So I went on a few divisions this week. On one, we went to this place called Chota. It’s this place in the middle of nowhere. We were walking on this dirt road, and we see this open area. We keep walking and we see this huge monument. It’s dedicated to the "hero’s of Mozambique". I will send some pictures and you will see how it is. It’s weird.

We passed by a members house. We saw his 3 year old kid throwing a little coconut up in the air, and when it was falling he would just laugh his head off. It was so funny. Then he would jump up and fall on purpose. He was having the time of his life. The boring life of a mozambiquan 3 year old. Ha-ha

On another division with Elder Finlayson, he told a little girl that her eyes were big. The girl looks at him and starts screaming her head off. All the little kids around were laughing their heads off. Funny time.

We were stopped by a woman with a baptismal certificate. She stopped us and asked if it’s from our church. We say yes. She then tells us that her son who was baptized died 4 years ago. So we go to their house. We talk to them. They wanted our church to dedicate the grave. They didn’t even know he was a member of the church until recently. They were looking at his things. So we had some members of the branch go and dedicate the grave on Sunday morning. We go to their house yesterday right after church and the family is just plastered. The dad came and was like “I can’t understand what you are saying". So we left. It was a very weird few days.
I saw my first baby blessing here in Mozambique. 17 months on the mission and I finally see one.

On Saturday we were cleaning the church. We see all these ants bundled together on the wall. So we get some baygon, or the bug killer, and spray it. They just slide off the wall dead. It was pretty funny to see.

Well that’s about it for this week. I love you all.

Elder Sirrine

Week 75

Life here in Munhava..... Haha where do I start. Ha-ha. Here there are tons of inactive members and we are trying to get them all back to church. Munhava is right next to Beira. I’m closer to Beira than I was in Manga. The edge of my area is next to the city. I am in a very small area. Smallest of my mission. I don’t have to walk an hour and a half to get to it. But I do have to catch a chapa, and all that stuff which takes almost an hour to do. We walk here. Only a few areas in the mission have bikes. And I am not one of those areas. My health is fine. I have gotten some rashes on my feet, but they are gone.

So I had an interesting week. On Friday, we went to the universal church. We worked in the morning. So we had some time at night. We are sitting in the very back. The "pastor" walks in, and starts yelling. He is telling people to come into the front. They are “praying". He tells them to lift up their arms and point to their house, and pray to God to protect. The dude is yelling and throwing holy water. People are freaking out. The guys little minions are "casting out devils" people fall. I felt sad for the people. I believe people were having devils cast into them if anything. At one point, the main guy was bringing some people who were sitting behind the people standing. We are sitting down farther back. The "pastor" is telling them to come up front. He looks at us and he doesn’t even say a thing to us. I believe he knew he was doing something wrong.

So last week, we see these tons of white people at Shoprite (Africa’s Wal-Mart). They were from this church thingy. The best thing was hearing there American accents. There are tons of white Africans who speak with a British accent, but not a lot of Americans. It’s weird to see other white people. The main white people we see are missionaries. So it’s not weird to see them, but others, it is. Ha-ha.

So I learned last week, someone I marked a baptismal date with in Manga, was having sex with a Muslim guy. So I received the shocking news. I felt really bad. I thought she was a really sweet person, but words are deceiving.

So we were using our GPS to find some houses. We typed in a wrong number and ended walking about 4 miles in the wrong direction. We stopped at the house the GPS was pointing at the house. We ask if the people are there and the old lady was like, I don’t know these people. We looked at the GPS again, at the coordinates. And we realize the mistake. It was kind of annoying, but funny at the same time. Ha-ha

The weather here is so hot. We looked at the weather and it’s supposedly going to be in the 90s all week. More swamp crack, here I come. Yayyssss. Not!

So I walked with an Elder Walker. He is a bigger boy. We were walking and I was in front. People are yelling “the one in front is a little big, but the other being is really big". He is in his first transfer and out of the MTC. So he is a biggie.

These like 10 year old girls were deciding whose husbands we were. They were like this one is mine, no he is mine, and the other is yours. IT was so funny.

That’s about it. I love you all. Have a good week

Elder Sirrine

Week 73

I have not gotten my packages yet. But a missionary couple should be coming up in the next couple weeks so hopefully they will have them.

So this has been a good week. Last week, I was able to obtain these amelikite necklaces. They have these green stones. They are very beautiful. They only cost 7 bucks a piece. Once at home, I need someone to check them out. I got 2 of them. I also got a little table made out of solid Ebony wood. It is so beautiful. You will all have to wait till I get home to see it - ha-ha.

So I had the chance to make mozambiquan blocks to build a house this past week. What they do is they get rocks and sand and make a pile. They put in a little bit of cement and water and use a shovel to mix it.  Then they get this metal mold to actually make the block. They pile the sand in and pick it back up and slam it down to help settle the sand. They put on another scoop of sand and beat it down with the shovel and get rid of the extra loose stuff on the top. They then bring the mold over and take it out of the mold. They just do this over and over again. It was actually fun to do.

We were at a member’s house this week and his little sister started crying and he didn’t do anything to help her. We ask him "are you going to do anything?'". He tells us "I don’t know what to do"/ People here sometimes, Wow. Ha-ha. They don’t know how to take care of people. Ha-ha

So some people in our house got some packages this past week. And they were just packed full of sweets. They actually had brownie mix, cake mix, snickers, and full of American goodness. We ate most of it. I realize how good stuff from home is and how much I really miss it. It was so good!

So we were waiting at the chapa stop, waiting to go home. And like 15 feet away, a chapa stops to drop some people off. A drunk guy tries to get on and the money collector, or cobarador, grabs him by his shirt. The guy keeps trying to get on and gets pushed off. We see him fly from the chapa into a patch of grass. We don’t see him for like 5 minutes because the patch of grass was in a little ravine. He gets back up and just walks off. All 4 of us just break out laughing. It was so funny to see.

So the church is doing a new program for the missionaries. Anytime you train new missionaries, you will be with him for at least 2 transfers. They will have a DVD program to have another hour of comp study. So you watch a church provided DVD, on a church provided DVD player. But on our mission, for now, President Spendlove wants every companionship to do it, training or not. So for now, I get to watch some DVDs. I watched the district, which is a film the church did following missionaries in California. I don’t ever want to hear missionaries from the states, or most other mission, saying they don't have anything. That is a lie. You may not have a lot of people to teach, but you have everything else. Here in Mozambique, we do have a lot of people to teach, but we have very little of anything else. I will explain more in person in 7 months or so to people if they would like to hear.

So we have a Zimbabwean girl in our branch. Her name is Nicole, and she speaks English very well and Portuguese. We started teaching her mom about the gospel. We were able to mark her for baptism. We don’t have an exact date for her. But when we sit with her again this week, we will hopefully set one

I live with two other elders from my MTC district, and one who came in 6 weeks after us. We were talking and realized me and the elder 6 weeks behind me, Elder Finlayson, could get our flight plans while serving here in Munhava. So we kind of got somewhat excited you could say. ahah

Here, they have these tiny little birds that they hunt. They then de-feather them and deep fry them. We bought one just to take pictures of it. It’s a very greasy little bugger. Ha-ha

Other than that, have a good week. I love you all.
The one and only, Elder Sirrine