Monday, December 9, 2013

6 more weeks with Elder Gooch!

I’m not sure what I did to get to hang with Elder Gooch for 6 more weeks, but the dynamic duo is staying together for a little longer!  But this week in Praia was soo sweet!  I took some notes throughout the week, because I never know what I should write on Mondays, so here are some little things.  

Tuesday, the bottom of one of my pants came unstitched.  So I went over to get Nicco, the member that was walking with us for the day.  And while we were getting him, I asked Felipa, his member mom, if she could fix it.  And she ran and got her sewing stuff, and told me to put my foot on the chair.  So here I am in africa, with my foot on this wobbly chair, having some old African women on her knees fixing my messed up church pants, I thought that was pretty funny.  

So anyway, same day we are walking with Nicco, who is 24, his younger brother Tony is our ward mission leader.  Tony just finished his mission here the transfer before I got here.  So we’re walking with Nicco, whose kinda not all the way there, but he’s a solid member, walks with us all the time.  And we go teach Nobert and Nice, just kinda checking up on them.  And for the first time ever, we heard their little boy Louis pray, and it was adorable.  It was so cute, hes five years old and it was just awesome!  Then after that Nice brought us a plate of food, and it was pretty good.  It was only the second time I had eaten with memberrs on my mission because there is a rule that we can’t because its kinda sketchy.  But their house is way clean, and they actually have a house so it’s all good.  So here I am, sitting next to Elder Gooch, two forks, one plate, eating this huge thing of rice. And I just thought, yep,  you’re in Africa right now..  Anyway,  after that, she brought us juice boxes, and they were good.  Then Nicco, the 24 year old member walking with us, stole the juice box from the five year old Louis!  It was the funniest thing I’ve ever seen!  Ha, that was just a funny day.
Wednesday was relatively normal, except for the morning.  We were walking back from the louge where we buy bread in the mornings, and there was this 40 year old guy walking down the road.  And he was walking toward us, and in front of us there were 3 teenage girls.  And right before he got to the girls, he dropped his pants all the way down, like everything came down.  Everything.  And it was just an interesting sight to see.  Like people go to jail for that in America, and it was just mildly strange for Cape Verde, if strange at all.   Beer here is the highlight of a lot of peoples weeks, which is pretty sad.   But the alcohol problem is really kinda out of control, everyone drinks all day.
Thursday was a way sick day, we did divisions with the A.P’s.  So I went to Achada San Antonio and worked with Elder Folgerburg, and Elder Bruce came and worked with Elder Gooch.  It was pretty sweet!  Obviously the A.P’s have the nicest house in the mission, so it was sweet to live there for a day.  I had a hot shower for the first time in 12 weeks, and I won’t lie, it felt fantastic!  We went to the office and did A.P stuff.  Which pretty much means Elder Folgerburg did everything while I talked with Sister Matthews, the senior couple that works in the office.  The AP’s in our mission have to do so much more than some other missions because  our transfers are the different islands.  So they have to worry about plane tickets, boat tickets, and all the transportation for 120 missionaries.  Our mission is growing fast, but we’re still one of the smallest in the world.  Anyway,  about the division, I learned so much stuff from the A.P I served with, it was sweet!  And we got ice cream after which is always great.
Friday I did another division with the Zone Leaders because Elder Gooch is the district leader, so he has to do the baptism interviews for everyone in the district.  So I got to hang out with Elder Acord for a while, and that was sweet.  I freakin love that guy so much, its sad he got transferred.  He is now the zone leader for the other zone in Praia, which kinda sucks because between him, Gooch, Darling, and I we had a ton of fun.  But the division with him was sweet too.  He did all three of our baptisms interviews for the week, and it was good, they were all awesome! I'll  write a little about each one of them.  

Derre:   He is a freaking boss, easily one of my favorite converts.  He had so many questions about the church, and wanted to learn so much.  He is 24, and we worked with him forever, like 10 weeks, and it was amazing to actually get him in the font.  He actually understood what he was doing, why it was important, and it was just incredible.    Easily the coolest moment of the week was when Derre took the sacrament for the first time.  Last week at church I was sitting by him, and he hadn’t  been baptised yet, and he didn't take the sacrament.  Then on Tuesday he asked us all about it, and why we took it, and we explained it.  Then Sunday, when he took it for the first time, he just had the biggest grin ever on his face.  And it just clicked.  Like, this guy gets it, he understands what he is doing.  And I'm tearing up just thinking about it. Like being able to help him feel that was incredible.  Like obviously the Holy Ghost is the ultimate teacher, but just to be there and help him realize everything, then to actually see that come into play was unreal. One of the best feelings of my life, by far.
Mandilla:   Also a boss.  He is 18, stud soccer player, and an incredible person.  He had already been to institute three times before he was baptized, just so prepared it was sweet.  Elder Acord, who did his interview, said he was the most prepared person he had ever interviewed, which is such a testament to him and how he wanted to learn.  His best friend is Edson, our baptism from a couple of weeks ago.  And Edson played such a huge role in his conversion.  
Edson actually did the baptisms for Derre, and Mandilla.  And Edson and Mandilla are both talking with President Fernandez about serving missions, so I super hope that happens!  

Alicia:   She is the daughter of Dena, another recent baptism we had.  She is the cutest little girl ever.  She is 11, and she is awesome.  Dena super helped out a ton, and that was awesome to have her there.  She has another brother we’ll baptize in a couple weeks here, so the work is definitely taking off.  

Saturday was great of course, had all those baptisms, it was sweet.  Had Ice Cream too. 

Sunday was the babysitting day, of course.  We kinda have a problem because we have so many recent converts we had to visit throughout the week, plus  all three of our baptisms everyday, we didn't have too much time to find new investigators, which we’ll do this week.  But we got Wilikar to church, our baptism for this week.  And for the first time ever, Jair showed some desire and came to church.  So we've gotta get him to quit smoking, but he’ll be baptized soon hopefully.  We had one more come too, so that was good.  But to find Jair, we went to this big soccer game going on.  It’s kinda crazy, 20 Africans on a tiny dirt soccer field just playing crazy.  So the whole town was watching, and we found Jair, and we asked if he was going to church, and he said yeah, and were like, we’re just gonna stay with you until church, mostly so he wouldn't drink before church.  But we got him there, and we stayed and watched soccer for almost an hour before church just to get him there.  But he came and it was sweet!  

Another cool thing that happened was during sacrament meeting, Nitto and his little bro Clayton passed the sacrament.  And two weeks ago I gave Nitto a tie, and Gooch gave Clayton one.  They didn’t have ties, and they can't afford to buy one.  So they wore those while they passed the sacrament, and it was just sweet.  He will put that tie to way better use than I ever could, and it was sweet to help him out and give him my tie.
I guess I’ll talk a little about the Christmas spirit here.  In Cape Verde, Christmas is big, but not huge.  But in our house, christmas is life!  We went to a chinese store and bought christmas lights, and floss, and santa hats that glow in the dark.  And we have tons of christmas music, and we just turn off the big lights and chill with the Christmas lights almost every day, its so sweet!  
Anyway this letter is so long, and if you read the whole thing you should get some sort of reward.  I won't write as much next week, thanks for reading all of this haha.  Love all you guys, and I love hearing from all of you!  

Com Amor, elder Jarvis

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