Monday, November 25, 2013

Transfers....‏

So as we're about to start our last lesson on saturday night the phone starts buzzing and i see that it is a call from the assistants and i figured since transfer news was imminent that i should answer it... and the call was for Elder Sumrak and this is how that phone call went... "Hello elder sumrak this is Elder Wooton. Did you get our dish soap yet?" Elder wooton has been asking elder sumrak to get soap for the assistants appartment for a few days... "No elder wooton i haven't had anytime to get you your dish soap" "Oh man that sucks cuz you are out of dish soap." "What are you talking about" "Your appartment is out of dish soap" "Man no its not i just bought some on Mondayyyyyyyyyyy............. man are you kidding me...." Elder Sumrak and i had been studying in the assistants apartment on thursday and we saw the list of stuff that they have to do all the time and i quote Elder Sumrak "Man i don't ever want to be one of them... that would suck" BAM he became an AP just like that.... and i was definitely just getting comfortable... really gonna miss him.. at least his area isn't far. He lives inside my area, attends the sacrament meeting before mine, and he's still in my district... But later that night i found out that i would be receiving Elder Gherkins as my new companion and he just came like an hour ago so i don't know a whole lot about him. He's also our knew District Leader so that means i'm still District Companion..... I hope that the companionship goes great but hey at least i made it through my first 6 weeks! 
Something awesome that i have started noticing is that studies become sweeter and sweeter every day. I really enjoy my study time. So this week it's gonna be pretty short but i want to issue a challenge to all those that read this email..... If you have scripture study as a family then "kushay kushayo" (good job) and if you don't then really.. get on it... some of the sweetest times i've ever had is family scripture study. But the challenge is that i want you to pray before you start and after... the prayer before is crucial because that prayer will invite the spirit and it will open everyones hearts to the promptings of the spirit... It should never be study.. it should be PRAYERFUL study and those prayers before and after are super awesome and necessary if you want to have an effective study so this week i want everyone to try it and see how your week goes... do it as a family, if you have a family and do it prayerfully.... it has drastically changed my testimony. And yes i will be checking up on this next week when i email but until then......... "Malloway" 
-Elder Rogers





Monday, November 18, 2013

"Most impressive"‏

SOOOOOOOOOOOo this week went by way fast! It was a ton better than last week ill tell you that! I truly think that being able to take the sacrament this week had a ton to do with it! That really is one of the most simple but essential things in this life.... i never really realized that until i came out here! Anyways so this week i took over the area for the first time while Elder Sumrak went on exchange to the New England area(which sucks physically). So that was way interesting and it was super fun! So we also had zone conference and that was super awesome! We heard Pres and Sis Ostler speak then the assistants did and then the zone leaders did and after that we had lunch which was chicken and rice and yes i ate it all... bones actually taste better everytime you eat them! So after zone conference we didn't know what to do because in this mission we can only proselite til 6 pm because we're on mountains and its midnight dark by 6:30. So we really could have just gone home but we decided to go finding just around the corner.... and wow we were blessed... we tracted into a family... sorry two families but they live at the same house they are both very interested and man there are like 8 people.... it was just such a sweet experience cuz you could really see the craftiness of the lord preparing these people... it was sweet. So anyways i finally got to Baptize someone! Two people actually! Augustine Simbo who is twelve years old and Andrew Simbo who is like 20... and he is 2 inches taller than me and has about 75 pounds on me... he is a big man... but man it was sweet!!! So now i have a total of 7 baptisms and its only been a month! It makes hiking up the mountain everyday worth it! So i know last week i told you all about maria.. and yes she is still super adorable and yes i go see her everytime i pass her home. She still won't talk to me but now i can get her to shake my hand! Which is an improvement because the kids her age see two white men and they go running away screaming bloody murder like we are going to kill them... and yes Elder Sumrak and i enjoy chasing them sometimes and even picking them up..... it is the funniest thing.. even if its evil... but anyways maria's knee is now at least half the size it was and she still has the chicken pox but they are going away slowly. 

So this weeks miracle was that i was able to lift Andrew out of the water.... but i'd like to explain my subject line to end this email.... So it is not an uncommon thing to be sitting and teaching a lesson to a mother holding her child and she just whips it out and starts feeding the kid... awkward at first but it doesn't even phase me now.... and even Elder Hill(our zone leader) said to a woman when i went on exchange with her "i beg, feed the kid so he'll stop screaming" so its even encouraged sometimes... so we're walking up to our area and we see this woman holding her child riding a motorcycle taxi and as she passes we see that she is breast feeding... now this is a first... and Elder Sumrak and i just looked at each other and he says "Breast feeding while riding bike? In the words of Darth Vador 'Most impressive.'"...................... then we lost it and it took us like five minutes to stop laughing to the point of tears.... Well i hoped you all enjoyed!! With love from africa........

Elder Rogers

p.s. The missionaries have a saying out here and it goes like this. "If you're dying(referring to sickness) don't... cuz out here you actually might."











Monday, November 11, 2013

Stressful week..‏

Well Chad was right when he said that skipping the sacrament makes for a long week... Last sunday we finally got the dvd with the october conference on it! However Elder Sumrak and i had 3 investigators that got baptized this last saturday and we went to get them interviewed thus ending up in us not being able to watch the conference... anyways when you don't take the sacrament it really does make for a very long week... this week went by in slow motion... it has been very stressful. Anyways we did have some baptisms on Saturday! 2... which i am confused by.. here in africa things are very different.. a man his wife and his son were getting baptized and the man and wife showed up and we asked were their son was and they said he was coming.... we got a call 4 hours later from some elders and they said there was a small boy here at the chapel looking for us..... the whole thing was just like "are you kidding me?" but that's okay he'll be baptized this saturday. So i got to give the wife, her name is Adama Sesay, the Holy Ghost on sunday at church! It was super sweet! After the service i was finishing up her paper work and it hit me that my name is going to be on her record for the rest of her life.... that felt pretty good! Anyways we have 6 investigators being baptized this coming saturday. One is that boy then the other five are a part member family and they are sooo sweet!! The mother is being baptized and all of her children! They are all super cool and they definitely spoil us when we come over.. they always cook for us and we always have chicken feet to eat and crab and chicken and cow skin and some meat that i don't even know what it is but its delicious! Could be dog or cat... either way its good. This week i went on exchange twice. Once wednesday and once friday. Being the District companion is sweet because you are always getting to go on exchange and see the areas!

So miracle for this week was actually on exchange... So friday i went to the new england area of the mission which is the huge mountain next to my area and ya that is probably the worst area.... as far as climbing goes.. its a full on steep climb THE. WHOLE. TIME. and man was it tough but rewarding at the end of the day! So anyways i'm on exchange with Elder Kollie, an elder from Liberia and man can this guy cook some sweet chop (food), anyways we are coming down for the day and we are just talking to a few people here and there and telling them what we are and sharing the message. Anyways we were completely out of tracks( mini pamphlets that explain small about the restoration, plan of salvation, gospel of Jesus Christ, word of wisdom, and the law of chastity which is always a fun one to teach) usually we just use the restoration ones but we were out half way thru the day so we used all the other ones we have.... anyways all we have left is a book of mormon to give out and 9 out of 10 times you never give that out as a first confrontation.. especially when 65% of the population is muslim... so we're walking down the mountain and i see this man and he is dressed up pretty nice, has glasses, and is walking with a very nice shoulder bag... you always talk to them! So we walk up and introduce ourselves and find out his name is Harry Conteh and he is a pharmacist and a lecturer at a college in Freetown and when he was young he lived in a compound(a bunch of small shacks made out of whatever surrounded by a half built cement wall) that was owned by a member of our church and he would always read the book of mormon... since he moved out and his parents were muslim that's what he became. And then we came along and wow was he prepared for us! We were out of tracks! What a coincidence? Uhhh no! Anyways Elder Kollie and Elder Bogh were teaching him the next day and him and his family are being baptized on the 7th of december..... That was the highlight of my week! The funny thing was... he could speak perfect english and i was speaking to him in Krio... and i had to focus on every single word i said before it came out of my mouth so that it would come out in english instead of krio(2 year old english). But even now there are some sentences that i can't remember how to say in a proper english format. It's sweet!

Now for the sad part of my week.... So we were walking up to an investigator and we saw him walking with this little girl and she has her knee wrapped up in this cloth and he is holding her hand and having her walk with him... as we approach we see that she is one of the most adorable 2 year olds that i have ever seen in my life and she has tears rolling down her face... he was having her walk with him to try and strengthen her knee.. her knee(when he unwrapped it later) was twice the size it should have been and was pussing out of these open wounds in her knee... she also had the chicken pox... This was our investigators daughter.. her name is Maria and she was trying to be tough but you could definitely tell she was in a lot of pain... well we gave her a blessing and i wish i could say that she got up and was fine and could run and walk like a normal little 2 year old but that was apparently not our Father in Heaven's will.. but hopefully by the time we go back this week she's alright! Just keep her in your prayers!

Also sorry for not sending any written mail.. its super busy and we have to go to the mission office to send it and that's really out of our way so sorry... but Chad i really can't tell you my address or the address of the mission office because i have no idea what it is. So anyways today was super p day which means the whole zone does something together and we went to Lumley Beach which is freaking sweet! It's super beautiful and sorry i still can't send pictures but wow you should see how sunburnt i am! Also i weighed myself this week and i have lost 8 pounds.... 

So that's all for now! I love you all!

-Elder Rogers

(part of an email to a friend)
So anyways i have one quick thing for you and it goes with your story of the hair in the drain... so this week i was taking a shower and the drain was clogged so i stuck my hand in the hole and i pulled out something and it was alive and living in a pile of stuff and honestly i would tell you if i recognized what it was or anything else i pulled out of the drain... also the cockroaches here.... are huge and they love to hang out around our water barrels in the back part of our home... its super freaky when you are getting water out of the barrels for your shower and you hear this pitter patter and you feel these things crawling over your toes...... its sweet... also they have the ability to fly... no.bueno. But its sweet and the spiders here aren't so bad... there are at least 20 in each room but the just look like pimped out daddy long legs and they are way fast but those aren't the ones you want to worry about... the ones that are freaky are these ones that are jet black, their body is the size of a pumpkin seed and they walk almost flat on their stomachs.. oh ya they're pretty big and super fast.... so fast that they can catch the cockroaches and munch on em...... they also posses the power to jump... about a foot.... but hey its Africa what doesn't posses the power to jump?;) So the pimp daddy long legs aren't so bad especially if you name them.... nephi and lehi are my boyz that chill around the toilet and the gadianton robbers hang out around our food... there are like 25 or so of them. And then there's Bob, Joe, Steve, and Jason... they like to chill right above my mosquito net so i stare at them until i fall asleep.... just to make sure they don't move because they're pretty large... but the other night Bob was trying to cuddle with me and he tickled my neck and woke me up and i squashed him.... So now its just Joe, Steve and Jason hahaha. Anyways life here is way awesome and super sweet!
















Monday, November 4, 2013

Why we don't teach white people....‏

So Friday night we are walking out of the mission office which is next to the chapel and we turn and i hear Elder Sumrak from next to me say "What in the White Chick is goin on!?" I laughed non stop as we walked down to this woman who was white and it is very rare to see one by the way! We introduce ourselves and find out that her name was F. and she was from England and she came here to work in an orphanage for three months... she said it was her dream to come here and that she had quit her job at a law firm that she has been working at for three years to come here.. (by the way we knew she was a little messed up in the head when she told us all that... SaLone is awesome but its not THAT awesome). So we proceed with asking her religious background. She was born in Saudi Arabia and she's an athiest (So now she has progressed to boku boku craze) anyways we told her to have a great time and went inside to the meeting we were late for. Turns out that the bishop was also late for this meeting and as we're waiting for him she walks in and sits down across the bishops office from us. She was waiting for her friend who was friends with our clerk so they were in there and so Elder Sumrak takes the opportunity to attempt to teach an Athiest...... So he proceeds to tell her about the book of mormon and bares his testimony and he pulls one out and right when she sees it she's like "oh no i brought about twenty books with me and i really can't take another" he replies .... "would you like 21?" hahahahahahahahahah then she says "no really if i take it i honestly won't even read it" and he says "its free..." we laughed for at least an hour that night when we were closing!! It was the funniest thing! We (Elder Sumrak) sounded so desperate and i was sitting there trying to not burst out laughing the whole time we (Elder Sumrak) were teaching and also why i didn't say anything is because honestly i was still shocked to see a white person.... So to every future missionary that is going out... that is how to effectively not teach someone... and for the record that is the first time someone hasn't accepted a book of mormon from elder sumrak and that night it was so much fun to laugh about!!

Anyways this week we taught 24 lessons and ya by the way my siblings still at home.. if you think fasting is tough just go outside and look at the mountains and imagine hiking up them while you're fasting... and then go pray for my strength;) It's not to bad and there are boku blessings from fasting! So this week we went to our awesome family! The simbo family! and they fed us twice! Fufu was not that awesome but the crab with it was delicious! But the second meal we had with them was called Tola which is just a sauch on rice and we had crab and i ate some chicken feet which actually are pretty freaking good! Its weird tho... how you eat them is you put there toes in your mouth bite down and pull them out of the socket and then chew everthing that came with it. Then because Elder Sumrak trained me well and im starting to lose my mind out here you proceed to eat all the skin tendons veins fat and bones.. and by the way (not meaning this in a gross way, im being serious) the marrow in the bones of chicken feet is super delicious! Food here is great!! Today i even had a Hamburger and it was one of the best i've ever had!!! 

So this week for my miracle is this......... time on mission is sweet and there is so much stuff that happens everyday that if you don't write it in your journal then you don't remember what happened on that day ever again... so this weeks miracle is that i am starting to want to be here more than back home... now home is great don't get me wrong but my mission has changed me more than anything ever could! And my testimony is still growing like crazy! Especially in the area of prayer.... prayer is my most favorite thing and i love doing it.. luckily out on mission you get the opportunity to pray about 15 times a day! Its sweet! And also every day i am out here i am just so glad that i was raised in the family that i was and i am so grateful for the peacefulness of the spirit in our home... and yes its weird but i guess i had to fly 6,000 miles away to find out what i wasn't noticing back home... but i am so grateful for all of you. Thank you so much mom and dad for raising me the way you did... i am boku boku gladdy for whatin una(you guys or you all) have done for me. I love you all so much!

love Elder Rogers

This weeks mendai word is actually a phrase Kloklomaiajavai (Clo-Clo-May-Uh-Jah-Vay) it means 'small drops of water make a mighty ocean'

Fun Fact:
Also something that i found this week was a street.... It's a one way road that is called 'Too Good Street' and that street leads to 'Pademba Road'. why is it Pademba Road? Because the Pademba prison is on that road. SO if you are too good for the Lord you are on a one way street to prison...spiritual or physical... or both. Just a fun fact for ya!

Elder Sumrak