Monday, May 26, 2014

Ao Tsara

Howdy y'alls! Manaokory. Mbo soa avao! Yeah, I learned a little teny Toliary this week from one of our investigators. Who knows, maybe I'll get sent there one day. In my dreams maybe. Haha. Anyways, it's been another good week here. To be honest, this one seemed to go a little slow, which I think it's because the week of transfer news is always like that in anticipation of what's gonna happen. But still a good week. It's hard to believe another transfer has gone by. Time keeps on moving, but are we? Yes.

That awkward moment when I run out of things to say and it's only the second paragraph. Not a whole lot happened out of the normal. Luckily I haven't been sick at all this week. But we did eat at that member's house again this week and it claimed another victim, Elder Hull. Haha. He had the exact same problems with his intestines and... Yeah. It didn't smell very good. But now it's safe to say that we will never eat at that member's again. The reason we go over there is because there's an investigator that lives with them who we teach. But then after we're done with the lesson they tell us to eat with them. This week we'll have to find a way out, even if we have to tell a little white lie to get out of it :)

We did have another cool experience. So we went to one of our investigator's houses that was kinda out in the middle of nowhere. But we get there and there's a lock on the door. Very mahakamo right? Yeah. And it was already getting a little late, so we decided to make our way back to catch a bus so that we could finish the night working closer to our house. But right as we were walking there was a lady that was yelling, "Misionera misionera!" from her little balcony. We went and she asked us if we preached the Book of Mormon and we started getting a little excited and told her that of course we did! She immediately invited us in and there was her family. We got talking and it turns out they had learned from the missionaries a little over a year ago back in Antsirabe. They ended up moving because of work here in Tana and they haven't seen the church or missionaries since they got here. But they had kept the copy of the Book of Mormon they received from the missionaries and I guess they've been looking for the church since  but with no luck. So it was a blessing for all of us in that we were able to find them and that they are now learning with us! Way cool. They're still not vita soratra, legally married, but they say they're still working on that. They're way smart too. So I'm hoping as we go along that we'll see real progress with them and they'll eventually make it to the temple one day. That's the ultimate goal. But yeah, there's your cool story for the week!

Other than that, not really much to share. I know, I'm lame... But I'm still an alive and a happy boy. We're still making some progress with the investigators we have and hopefully by next week we'll have some baptisms. So we're getting ready for that. We've also shifted our focus a little. We discovered that there's actually a lot of less actives in Ampitatafika, so instead of doing porte a porte we're going to make more of an effort to reach out to the less actives and to help strengthen what we already have in the ward. But yeah, overall the work is still going well.

The transfer news didn't affect me at all which wasn't a surprise. But it turns out that Elder Connault will be heading off to Reunion. He's excited and I'm excited for him. Not gonna lie, if I got transferred there I'd be pretty bummed. But hopefully he'll find success there. We've been through a lot and I'm gonna miss that Conoober.

Anyways, I think that'll do it for the week. I'll get some pics up and catch up on emails. Love you all!!! Have a mahafinaritra week!

Ny kibo tsy mba lamosina!

Tiako ianareo!

-Elder Mumfy

When Elder Hull was sick I had a little time... So I looked through my pictures and decided to do a little something to remember Grandpa Mumford. :)

Monday, May 19, 2014


Manahoana tompoko! Hey there again :) How's life going for everyone? Hope all is well! Everything here is still moving along. Honestly, it feels like it's been a little while since I wrote an email like this, but I guess it has been a couple of weeks! That Skype was so awesome by the way. There's just nothing like seeing and talking to everyone! And it was good to find everyone looking and doing well.

Let's see... Well I guess I have 2 weeks to catch up on. I'll start with a little about the week before last. Nothing really out of the ordinary. We did do a little streetboarding competition with our zone. Streetboarding is a lot like skateboarding except completely different. Haha. Helpful right? So each companionship made a little board with some things about the church with some pictures on it to get people's attention. I've got pictures of it that I'll add on rehefa avy eo! But yeah, we ended up kinda teaming up as a district, Ampitatafika, Itaosy, and Tanjombato. We went to this place that touches all three of our areas. But because of that, all of the people we came in contact with were from different areas. It would've been nice to get a few contacts for our area, but oh well. We're all in this together. And we know who we are... Haha okay I'll stop with the High School Musical sing-along, but you get the point. Oh and the other thing that happened. So I was telling you guys about this at the Skype, but I'll write about it anyways. We went to this place called Alakamisy that's wayyyyyyy out in the middle of nowhere. So it was an adventure for us. The reason we went all the way out there is because there's a family there that's been coming to church who want to learn from the missionaries. One of them is already a member, but got the others interested. They're amazing. When they don't have enough money to take a bus, they walk out 2 and a half hours to get to church. Talk about faith! I really hope that they can just stick with it, because I know the Lord has many blessing for them if they continue and eventually get baptised and enjoy to the end. Such a testimony builder for me! But yeah, way cool experience there.

This past one has been a little interesting. I mean when isn't it right? But we had more times fall through than usual as well as the back-up plans. And when that happens, what do we do? Yep. Finding! We got to do 6 hours of it. I guess I really can't complain, I know in most missions 6 hours of contacting in a week is nothing. But I actually don't mind it much. I think it's fun getting out and exploring new places we've never tried and meeting new people. We're also working with the ward to get some more referrals and so far that's worked out well. We're starting to see some results from all the finding and we're starting to have a program full of appointments, so that's exciting. The investigators we teach are still doing alright. There have been a few unexpected problems that have come up. The couple that was supposed to get vita soratra this week had problems with their paperwork so they couldn't. But they say it's a for sure thing this week, so I'm really hoping it goes through. There's another one of our investigators who has a baptism date coming up soon, but we talked about the Word of Wisdom and it turns out that he smokes 3 cigarettes a day. Not a huge deal, he says he's still trying to quit completely, so hopefully he can do that soon. So not really huge problems, but ones that will still require a little waiting. So the baptisms we had planned for this upcoming saturday will probably be pushed back to early June sometime. Still looking forward to that!

This past Saturday was... Not pretty. Haha. I got a little sick. The night before that we had dinner at a member's house, who by the way is probably the richest family on this side of Tana. Anyways, I guess the meal didn't sit too well with me because the next morning my stomach was all in knots and I was completely out of it. Haha. Elder Hull wouldn't even stay in the same room as me because it smelled so bad... Haha. I don't think I need to go into too much detail. But it took me all day to get it whatever was bugging me out of my system. I'm pretty sure it was all the beans I had. And the sausages. Haha. But now I'm just like new! The reason I tell you all that story... Well I guess there isn't really one, it was just something interesting that happened. You're welcome :)

Well I can't really think of much else that's been going on outside of the usual. Things are still going well. Elder Hull is still a little awkward with his malagasy, but I was certainly there too! He's improving though and I'm learning more and more from this experience as well. This is the last week before transfer news... So weird how the time goes by. I highly doubt anything is going to happen to me because me and Elder Hull are on what they call a 12 week training program. But ya just never know. More and more missionaries are leaving than coming in. More areas are going to be closing and with the last 3 transfers being curveballs, I'm not even gonna try to guess what'll be thrown my way next. But we shall see!

I think that's about all for now. I'll get on to other things and of course get some much anticipated pictures up. Sure do love you guys. Tiako ianareo!!! Mandra-pihaona indray!

-Elder Rakotolavabe

       So I was uploading pictures onto photobucket and it was being super slow and then all of a sudden the computer just shut off. Technology isn't my friend today. But we have to go now. There might be a few that made it on, but I'll get the rest on soon, I promise! You guys are the best!

-Elder Mumford

Monday, May 12, 2014

Thanks for the chat!!

Hey everyone again! Just have a couple more minutes, but just wanted to drop another quick line in. I'm so glad it was able to work out to Skype again and that it worked out so well. You guys are awesome! I'm the luckiest missionary out there :) Talking to everyone meant so much to me. It's hard to say goodbye as always, but we always have next week for emails! I'll be looking forward to that as I always do. Next week I'll catch you all up on what's been happening here and pictures of course! Again, you all are the best!!! Tiako ianareo!!! 'Til next week!

-Elder Mumf

Monday, May 5, 2014

Where did April go?

Hey everyone!!! Salama ve? Tsara izany. Madagasikara is still keeping me alive and well. This week fleeeeeeeeew by. April fleeeeeeeeew by. The past 9 months have flown, really. Guess the time flies when you're having fun! And that's exactly what I've been having :)

This week has been pretty good. It's been a little interesting, because we've basically had 3 days in our program to fill. Before, we worked 3 days in Itaosy and 3 in Ampitatafika, but now that the areas are split again those 3 days became very free and open. So we've kindof spread out our times across the whole week so that there isn't any one day where we have no lessons. We've had some referrals from members, so that's helped a great deal to fill up our time. But as always when we don't have times lined up for us to go teach, we gotta go find 'em ourselves. Haha. Yeah, we did quite a bit of porte a porte this week. 6.5 hours worth! More than I've ever done. But it actually proved to be effective. We were able to find some people that are open to hearing our message and we were able to get some phone numbers. So hopefully we'll have some solid investigators from that. We had kindof a funny experience this week. So we were walking around looking for people to talk to, when this malagasy comes up to our side and said in a perfect american accent, "Hey guys, how's it going?" Me and Elder Hull both did a double take. We proceeded to talk to him in English (Felt so weird!) and he said he had learned from missionaries before. He gave us his number and told us to stop by when we were around. Way cool! While we had a lot of people have the classic excuse of "mbola manao zavatra" and didn't want anything to do with us, we were still able to find people that greeted us with a smile and wanted to hear more. I also found that tracting can be fun if you let it be! There were times where we would just talk to people on the side of the street, and at first just have a normal conversation. But almost always it led into talking about the church and inviting them, which is way more effective than just going up to people and giving the same little speel. Wow this paragraph is long! Sorry, but anyways, hopefully we'll see some results from our finding.

The investigators we have now are still doing well. We got one of them to quit coffee! Booyah. Other than that, just still teaching them and helping them get ready for baptism. We're hoping to have a few more coming up on the 17th, but we'll see how it goes.

Me and Hullskies are still doing well. He's still somary sahirana amin'ny teny gasy, but it's okay. We were all there! Elder Hull is a great guy though. It's fun working with him, even though I'm doing most of the things we do. But I'm trying to have him as involved as possible in the things we do around here. Maybe when we do a little tracting this week I'll knock on a door, move out of the way, and say "here you go Elder Hull! Mazotoa!" Muahahahaha! Okay, maybe not quite that mean, but I'll still push him so that he can learn. It's really the only way. But yeah, so far I'm liking being a trainer. It's weird and stressful at times, but anytime I feel even a little frustrated I just reflect about how I was when I got here and immediately all of it vanishes. Haha. But we're having fun out here, and I'm getting a lot more practice with Malagasy in, so that helps!

Let's see... Can't really think of anything else to say for now. Mother's Day is coming up!! To be honest, it kinda snuck up on me and I haven't really made any plans for how the Skype is going to work... But we will! I'm not exactly sure when I'll be able to yet. Usually we kinda get an outline for when we should do it from the mission, but that hasn't come. So I'll ask around and as soon as I know I can send a quick email from a cyber to let y'all know when it'll be. Sorry I don't have an answer for that now... But I'll get that out once I know when we can! I'm so excited!!!

I think that'll do it for this week. Just still keepin at it! Have a great week everyone!!! Tiako ianareo!!!


-Elder Mumford