Wednesday, September 23, 2009

September 21, 2009

Hello from Berbice!

Haha, this week was nuts. So! Transfers happened, but a problem arose. None of the scheduled mini missionaries were able to come this week. So for example, in the Canje Zone where I am, there are only me, Elder Noah (my companion for this past week), and Elder Duncan (Zone Leader) covering a HUGE area. It was a hassle. I was only able to work in Rose Hall 1-2 days. When we get some temporary mini missionaries, until the real mini missionaries get here, we will have 3 companionships in our zone. It's gonna be tough but exciting all the same.

These are answers to Dad's questions that he listed in his email:

As a district we meet weekly unless it's zone conference or zone meeting. It'll probably be a bunch of combined zone meetings though, because of lack of numbers. There are only 3 companionships working all of Berbice Zone too. So that makes 12 missionaries in 2 zones. Usually it's about 10-12 per zone. Exchanges happen once a transfer cycle (every 6 weeks). I will serve with everyone in my district; the zone leader serves with everyone in his zone. My district is really just the zone leaders and me.

So I really am not doing much. Elder Noah, my companion this past week, is from Delta, Utah. In Rose Hall, there is an organized branch that can run on its own but still needs missionaries to help with things like tithing. The Crabwood Creek branch, one of the ones that Noah is over, is not as organized and needs missionaries to teach classes and things. Skeldon, another area Noah is covering, is only a group and had 8 people at church. I was in Crabwood Creek and Skeldon this past weekend, so I got to see that. It was pretty rough. The senior couple for my branch was the Treseders, but they have to leave due to the Lock-Up situation. The only couple in Berbice will be the Lingrens in Canje.

I recieved the package on Tuesday!! Thanks so much for all of that! I am very happy with some of the ties. Haha, some of the missionaries are very jealous. The candy and drink mix was very welcome too. Mac and Cheese though can be found here. Don't need to send that from now on, thanks though! I don't know my new mailing address yet; will get it to you ASAP.

Each missionary get 270 US a transfer. Also, the senior companion gets about 200 US for travel to pay for taxi, bus and cars. In Berbice for long trips you take bus, short drops you just flag down a car that's goin along. Most are working taxis.

About the visa situation, not so sure about if it's fixed. All I know is that I should be getting a work permit soon that is either for 90 days or for 1 year. Not sure about the time. Pretty sure it's one year, so I'll be here for awhile. However there is a cap of foreign missionaries. Only 20!! That is not enough for Guyana. That's why they have been rushing to get local missionaries to serve full-time missions.

So basically this week was kinda wierd. Haha. When we got to Berbice on Thursday, there was a big meeting with President Hymas telling us what to expect and how to handle what was before us. It was an amazing lecture/talk. I learned a lot about diligence and complete obedience, setting an example for our mini missionaries. After, I went to the apartment, dropping off all my stuff and unpacking. A nice apartment, mosquito screens on the windows, keeping most mosquitos out. Lots of room, used to hold 4 missionaries. Big beds, full size. Anyway, I like the apartment. The landlord is our branch president, President Johnnie. He's a cool guy, energetic, very willing to work. That night when I got there he called the EQ President, Brother Garret, and he took us around to meet some members.

BTW, until this settles down I'm with Elder Noah. I should be getting Elder Moses, a mini missionary, to serve with me tommorrow. Elder Noah is a funny guy. Not a hard worker but once I get the mini missionary with me we can get to work. He's a cool guy and everything though. I like him.

We were in my area Thursday night and Friday, just seeing members and getting to know that area. Saturday and Sunday we were in Crabwood Creek and Skeldon, Elder Noah's area. Nice area, very rural so it was pretty neat to walk around. Ate some cane, mango, coconuts. It's sweet. Out here members just give you fruit all the time. It just grows on trees so they have a guy climb up a coconut tree and kick down some coconuts for us. It was fun.

Berbice is a crazy place. Haha about the language. It's just horribly broken down English. Replacing her with she and him with he. Like, "What's she name boss?" Or, "Whappin de?" It's pretty fun though. Hard to understand people, but it'll get easier.

My area's pretty interesting. Elder Jones, an assistant to the president right now, served here for about 6 months. He baptized 80 people. So many people have been baptized here, but the attendance at church is horrible. Almost all of the converts about a year ago when the area caught on fire don't go to church anymore. That makes my job pretty rough. Reactivation is now on the list of things for me to do here. I'm excited to get working though; I could do very well here. Just applying the principles President Gamiette wants us to apply and teaching and testifying of the Book of Mormon will be very important.

Also, what happened to BYU and UTAH? I expected as much from Utah State but not BYU and Utah. (Sorry Amy, they are just a horrilbe team!)

Anyways, I've written way to much. I love it here so far. There's no Pizza Hut or KFC but I'll get over it. I'm just glad I get to stay in Guyana, let alone Rose Hall. My area used to be an area where legends were born. No joke. So many amazing missionaries have been through here and baptized grips (lots of people).

Have fun at home. Let me know how things are!

Elder Morris


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