Monday, November 4, 2013

Week 21

I really think that I have progressed a lot since I came on the mission. I've learned so much in what I was going to say is a short amount of time but it hasn't really been that short. I'll be turning five months next week. It has felt like a short amount of time to me though. I realize that it will be gone before I know it and I want to make sure I don't waste a minute of it. I do sometimes think, “Wow, I'm in South Africa far, far away from anyone else I know from home” but the mission is a very unique experience and I could never get these experiences doing anything else.

I'm excited that you sent the flash drive. I'll print off the pictures that I want and just look through the rest on the DVD player now and then. I actually already have the Brad Wilcox talk about the Atonement. We had training on it in my first transfer but another copy can’t hurt. I've been thinking of getting an iPod Touch. Some of the other missionaries have them. It would be a nicer camera than I have now and I could put lots of church stuff on it. The church is becoming very technologically advanced. Apparently missionaries in Canada are given iPads to use in their teaching. That would never work in Africa; we would get mugged every day. That's also why I'm not sure about the iPod - it might get stolen and also I won't really need it when I get home. Do you have any pictures from my baptism? Elder Mahoney had pictures from his and everyone here loves to see them.

This week has been an interesting one. It was transfers and Elder Mahoney left to become a Zone Leader in Port Elizabeth. I got along so well with him and we taught in unity very well. I'm going to miss him a lot. He was replaced by Elder Slabbert. He is from South Africa from a place called Centurion. He's a nice guy and things have been going well with him so far. I've been pretty lucky with my companions; it has only been three though.

Normally for transfers we would go to East London to drop off and pick up our companions but for some unknown reason we got left behind in Queenstown. Half of the missionaries left so when I say “we” I mean four of us got left behind without companions and no appointments planned because we all thought we would be in East London. So, we didn't really do much. The Zone Leaders said we could go anywhere within 40 k's so we drove to a place called Lady Frere. We thought it would be a cool place. It wasn't. It is a tiny town with nothing in it but a mini spar and Boxer. So that was a bit of a waste.  We drove back to Queenstown and ate dinner at Nando’s, which is a chicken place.

Then Wednesday we just waited for our companions. We had a dinner with some members planned and a lesson but they didn't get back until too late to go to either of them. We had a busy Thursday planned but lots of appointments ended up dropping. It is exam time right now and everyone in Queenstown is either a student or a teacher. It's so crazy. But because of it everyone is super busy and they don't have time for us. Things we'll definitely pick up when exams are finished.

Sunday was fast and testimony meeting and I was able to confirm Patience and Apiwe members of the church and give them the Holy Ghost. I don't even remember the last time I saw a confirmation so I was super nervous. There were four confirmations and I was doing two of them but of course I got to go first. I confirmed Patience a member of the Church of Jesus Christ but I left off the Latter Day Saints part so I had to do it again. Apiwe's confirmation went a lot better.

Daryl and Lianet also came to church which made me very happy to see. Richard was able to bring his kids that we've been teaching too so it was a very good Sunday. It's very strange to hear all of the Xhosa testimonies and not have a clue what's going on. They also like to tell jokes and everyone starts laughing and I'm just sitting there wondering what they said. After church the ward did a break the fast and we sang twelve hymns before we ate. My companion is the piano player so that must have been a fun first Sunday for him. I told him beforehand that we have the keys to the church so he was able to practice a bit and it went well. I hope this week is busier than last week. I'm getting sick of these exams. I have given a few blessings to people for their exams and I'm sure they'll do great. I think that's all for this week. I'll talk to you again next week. Love and miss you all.

Sala Kakuhle (Stay well)

Elder Kupka

P.S. People tell me that I can click very well. Now I just need to learn how to put the words together in Xhosa.