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Monday, January 19, 2015

Week 88 - Happy to be back in Quelimane


Dear Family,

I'm doing well here. To answer your question, I am aware of the floods up north in Macuba, I've seen pics and videos of it as well. This is the rainy season. Quelimane, along with much of Zambezia Province, is extremely prone to floods during the rainy season, but I don't think we will have floods here like in Macuba. However, many roads are flooded due to heavy rain; they're still passable, but in some parts the water gets pretty high, even with our tall rain boots on. But we're staying safe. We dry off immediately when we get home and try not to be too wet during the whole day. It's all part of the experience though; I'll have some interesting stories to tell when I get home. But I’m enjoying my time here so much.




Last Monday in Beira, after I got the news of the transfers, we went about our p-day as normal. That evening we went out to work and I said goodbye to some of our investigators and members in our area. I thank the Lord for the special opportunity I had to work with so many good people here, Almost everyone I met was very receptive and friendly. So it's bitter sweet to have to leave, but this is the work of the Lord and this is His time. The next day I got on a flight to my new area.
So now, I am back in Quelimane,  this city hasn't changed much since I left over a year ago. All the roads look the same, there's still a ton of people riding bikes everywhere, To me, Quelimane is a beautiful place it's not a big fancy city in any way; it is small and old and has a unique history!  I love this place and although it is small, it has about everything you need.

The work this week went well. It was nice to visit the members during the week and see them at church yesterday. All were very surprised to see me here again.  Serving here this time is a lot different than my first time. This time around I'm not a new missionary, I know the language, the culture and the people,  and this time I have a lot more responsibilities, I have been called by our mission president to serve as the 2nd counselor in the branch, however, our 1st counselor has not been coming to church for a few weeks. So the presidency for now is just President Mabunda and me and the executive secretary. But things got more interesting for me because on Saturday, President Mabunda traveled down to Maputo, he's taking a 3 week vacation from work. So yesterday I was presiding and conducting sacrament meeting.  And for the next two weeks I will do the same, as well as presiding over other meetings during the week. So yesterday it was a little strange for me to say the least, but it went well for being my first time ever that I was presiding in a branch of the church.  I also had to teach the Gospel Doctrine class for the adults during Sunday school, the regular teacher was absent, in fact a lot of people were absent because of heavy rain. This week we are going to work really hard to invite people to come to church next Sunday.
The rain wast not enough reason to keep us from doing our job. If that was the case, we would not have gone out all week. The good thing is that when it's raining the people we want to visit are in their homes. So we put on our boots and get on our bikes and do our work as normal.

I've got completely soaked from head to toe about 3 times this week haha. 



We have great youth here in this branch. Every day this week a young man came along with us to our lessons. There is one young man here, Abrao, who submitted his mission papers this week. He is a pioneer in the sense that he will be the first person from Quelimane to go serve a full time mission. I will probably be here when he receives his call. My companion is Elder Khumal from Johannesburg, South Africa; this is his 3rd month in Quelimane. Even though I know a most of the city already, he's been showing me around parts of the city where I didn't go to when I was first here. 

We also need to work a lot with the inactive families. Sadly, one very nice family we baptized has been inactive, so I'm excited to start working with them and bring them back. Other members I left behind though, are strong.  We had dinner at the house of one of the families we baptized  back then on Tuesday night when I got here.
Our house is still the same as before, it is big and comfortable; we also have our church meetings in this house.  Me and my companion are the only ones assigned to work the whole city, So I’m glad that we are allowed to ride bikes here in this area; it makes it getting around a lot easier- even in the rain.



This p-day has been good so far. We went to a soccer field to a school nearby and played soccer with the youth of the branch. It was pretty fun. Then we did our shopping, and came home. We use internet here in the house. 
Tonight we are having a branch family home evening here at our house, it should be fun.  Now that I've spent this week getting used to the area again, I'm ready to work and find new families and help the members be stronger and help the branch have real growth. It will only be possible with the hand of the Lord.
I thank you for all your prayers for me and my investigators. I love you sooo much and I’m glad to hear that you're all doing well. I am always praying and thinking of all of you.

Love,
Josh




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