Friday, August 30, 2013

August 26, 2013 Manga

After arriving in Mozambique the missionaries stayed at the mission home until Friday, receiving further training.  Then Elder Lynn was sent to his first area - Manga.  It is about 750 miles by land from the mission home in Maputo.  His companion is Elder Schacterle from Washington and has been out for about three transfers. 

Because Elder Lynn is expending much energy trying to adjust to the area and because of internet going down we don't have much to share from his e-mails, but he did send this to us this week.

Hey family,
I'm sorry that I didn't get to write a letter last week. The internet was down and so we didn't get to email much. But I'll try and fill you in on what is happening. Well we got here a couple weeks ago and that first week we had to do a lot of paper work. So the first week was spent doing paperwork and all that. The office elders and the Assistants to the president taught us how to eat and gave us some trainings and all that good stuff. Then we got our assignments on the thursday night and then headed out friday night. I ended up getting in to Manga at like midnight so pretty much saturday morning. It was pretty rough to get in that late and then we went right to work. My companion is a really good guy. His name is Elder Shachterle but we just don't have like anything in common which is really hard. But we do a lot of work. So we have quite a few families right now. The families here take quite a while to get baptized because of the marriage deal. There are so many documents they need to get married and the documents can take quite a while to get through so we usually have to set their baptism date quite a while in advance. But we have a pretty nice house comparitavely speaking. I live with 2 other sets of missionaries too which is a blessing because I definitely need other people to talk to. We live like 45 minutes away from our area though and that is really hard. We have to walk so much everyday and we don't have bikes right now so my feet are super blistered. But we do have AC and warm water in our house so that is super nice. But ya manga is pretty poor. Not the most poor area in mozambique but definitely poor. Pretty much all houses are little shacks or mud huts. And there aren't really streets anywhere, we just walk the the villages on little paths. And all we hear all day long is "branco" or "mazungo" or "china". Mazungo is dialect for white person here. They speak a lot of dialect here. In the north where I am, they speak macena. Down south in Maputo they usually speak machangana. Pretty much everyone here speaks one or two dialect languages. One hard thing about the languages is that most of the women here never go to school very far and they don't speak portuguese very well. They also usually never know how to read. So a lot of times we rely pretty heavily on the husbands to be able to help them understand and read. When we try and get the women to pray in the lessons we usually have to have them pray in dialect cause they can't or won't do it in portuguese. Food is really cheap here compared to america. So we actually eat really well. We have an elder in our house who has gained 35 pounds here in 4 months. There are so many cookies and everything around here that we eat them all the time on the street. We haven't eaten at any members houses yet so I haven't tried anything crazy. I've seen some pretty nasty things though. One thing they do is take fish and then just dry it out on the roof and then once its dry they just eat the whole thing. Its really nasty and I refuse to try it. We all have water filters in our houses so luckily we all get filtered water. We eat lots of fruits on the side of the road which is really nice. The kids here are super good but at the same time some are just crazy and hard to deal with. It can be super hard to always be singled out and all that. But the town Beira where we come to email is like an hour away. I don't know how far in distance but the public transportation is hard here so its random how long it will take. Umm we have like 3 families right now who should be married and baptized next month so that should be good! If I think of more things I will keep sending them.
Elder Lynn

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