Date

August 26, 2019

Area

Mpumalanga South Africa

Companion

Elder Rangwanasha

week 1 in durban (mpumalanga)

Whats up

Its been a long and very challenging and rough week but i will do my best to cram everything into one email. so i am in my very first area, hammasdale! i am in the absolute middle of nowhere, its pretty cool! everything is on fire here and there are cows and goats and chickens everywhere. also on a sad note, there are dead dogs on the side of the road everywhere:/ the ward is called Mpumalonga and its has about 400 people on the ward roster but only about 60 to 80 show up regularly hahaha so the bishop asked us to really focus on reactivating people, it will be interesting. My companion/trainer/father is elder Rangwanasha and he is from Johannesburg. He is super funny and goofy
and really good at teaching. we have a whole house to ourselves but a "house" here is about the size of a two door garage, pretty fun and stressful at the same time. the people here are absolutely incredible, they are so loving and so kind and always talking to each other. i am
basically famous here only because i am white. everyone that is sitting on their porch or that we walk past stares at me and says something to me in english wanting me to respond. all the little kids call me "mulungu" which means "white guy" in zulu. My companion just told me to yell back at them "zulu zulu zulu" to confuse them hahaha.

i have no car, no bike, and we have to walk everywhere. except there are these "taxi's" and they are just big vans that people drive and claim to be taxi's they are super convenient.

my very first lesson was with this man named sipho who has been interested in the church for some time now and the missionaries have never challenged him to baptism which was super confusing to me. so we got to his home and we started talking about the plan of salvation and
he was really understanding and agreeing with everything we were saying so i just went for it and asked him if he wants to be baptized and he said yes!! so ya, my very first lesson and i already have one baptism in the making. it was such an uplifting feeling and very spiritual experience.

mpumalanga is a very pretty place, im going to try to send some pictures in a minute to show you what i mean.

mission life is very difficult. i wasnt expecting anything like this hahaha. my feet and back hurt. no matter how early i go to bed, i am still just as tired as i am every other morning at 6 am. we have to be back before the sun goes down and sometimes we are on the other side of town at sunset and it is a super long walk/jog/run back to our
boarding, but its all just memories in the making.

i can fully testify that homesickness is a real thing and that being on the other side of the earth from everything i am used to is not an easy task.

ill leave you all with a funny/gross story that happened just before we were about to leave the MTC. so my companion in the MTC was elder willard. and at the time, as far as i knew, he was a normal cool guy. anyways, we are packing our things up on the very last night and we
are all lounging around, and he comes out of the bathroom and says to me and the other companionship in the room, "i have something i need to tell you guys..." and we all turned and looked at him and said "what?" and then he goes on to say, "I have been peeing in the sink
for the last 3 weeks and i didnt tell you guys" I almost stood up and started beating him up. He had been peeing in our sink that we were all using for the last 3 weeks!!

anyways, i love all of you guys back home, i miss you like crazy,

please keep me in your prayers.

-elder B




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South Africa Durban Mission
Local
South Africa

Length of Service

79 %

Days in Mission Field

1
Years
7
Months
2
Days