Hello Family and friends,
Things are going really well here. Never fret. We're actually a little bit into the second rainy season now. It's rained 2-3 times this week. This rainy season only lasts 3-4 weeks from what I understand. I'm just happy because it's staying cool at nights.
I haven't heard anything about cholera around here, but most diseases
around here have their Fon names that I can't understand. I've really
only noticed malaria and parasites, because that's what missionaries get.
You did put some acne stuff in the package, but not a lot. Also, I could use another little tub or two of hair gel, turns out when you sweat a lot you have to put in more. I've still got plenty, but it won't be enough to last the mission like I thought.
Missionary work has been doing well in most regards. We had another baptism on Saturday. Amour is just a couple of months older than Wes, he was already living the law of Chastity and the word of wisdom before we met him. He's a cool guy, and he actually asked that I be the one who did the baptism. Never had that happen before. The baptismal service itself was big, 16 people. Elder Bukasa had already asked me to baptize their candidate, so I was planning to do two. Then another Elder asked me to be Jean-Baptiste for the Nigerian family he had been teaching. So I ended up baptizing five people, two in French and three in English. I was worried I was going to baptize them "for and in behalf of" someone, but it all worked out great. The Nigerian names were even more difficult than the Beninois names, in an interesting twist. The wife bore her testimony that when she went in the water she felt something incredible, she couldn't really describe it. At least partially because her English wasn't even very good, but it was still really cool to hear her say it.
The next American missionaries coming home are in December. Which is the same time we'll be getting another couple for the mission. We'll have three couples, that'll be an adventure. The mission is definitely growing. Don't worry, I've been taking a lot of pictures, my guess is that by December I'll have at least 500. Probably more, we're talking about going to Ouidah next week.
Thanks for keeping me in the loop, always feel free to keep me in the loop about anything. That goes for everyone who reads the blog. I read fast enough, don't worry.
Spiritually, I'm starting to learn how to recognize the spirit more. You would think I would have learned after 3 times that if I feel like I should take an extra copy of the Book of Mormon, I need to. Nope, it took me at least 4 times.
Heard a bar blasting Forever Young the other day, that made me smile.
I've actually been able to answer some longstanding questions I've had. Like 1 Cor 15, why is Death the last enemy to be conquered? and how did prayer work before the ministry of the Savior? Turns out a lot of questions can be answered if you just read the entire chapter. Fun how reading more will give you the answers you want.
I went back and read a lot of the talks from the last October General Conference. I didn't really know why, but it was really good for me. Then on Sunday I got called on to go translate for a Nigerian woman in Relief Society, her usual translator wasn't there. Wouldn't you know, they were discussing a talk I had read the day before. Most of the time, you have no idea that you've been prompted to do something.
I haven't heard anything more about transfers, but will know for sure on Sunday. I'm pretty sure I will at least be transferred out of Gbedjromede, I've been here for 4 transfers. I'm ready to go in some ways, and in others I really want to stay. There are a few investigators I really want to see get baptized, but I can't do that if I'm in Togo. I know that wherever I go, it's where I need to be.
I got a letter from Grandma this week with a newspaper clipping from the Mormon Times, tell her thank you from me, I really liked it. I also got the ward newsletter for August, that one came really fast.
I honestly think that when I received the gift of tongues, that must have affected my taste buds. Everything is delicious these days. Even things that have been on my bad list for years taste good now. We went to eat at a member's house this last week and the main dish was beans and beets. Delicious. Also, there's something called gaari. I don't understand how it works, but it's kind of like flour that tastes like Parmesan cheese.
I love you all, and I mean it Elder Christensen