Monday, April 24, 2017

Busy Superstition

Oh yeah, so this week I didn’t get sick! So already an amazing week so if any one was worried about me it’s all good I’m no longer sick. It’s just the normal day to day trials that are left. I had a pretty busy week teaching people and finding new investigators, my sector is really far away from the church so people have to use a lot of faith to come to church every week but while I was back with Raveneau we were up to 9 investigators that came to church in a week but just like that something happened and the third week Mayani was here we had not a single investigator at church, not one. Which was weird because there were some investigators that were so loyal they were treated as full time members they just weren’t baptized because of marriage problems, which is a huge deal here and it’s complicated and I wont explain all that in this email. Any way the problem was no one was coming to church and we didn’t know why.... well then we figured it out.

The culprit was yet again voodoo, weather you practice or not voodoo is real and people here are incredibly superstitious, especially in my sector where voodoo is rampant. And I think I already said this but like Benin is to voodoo as Utah is to Mormons. Like Salt Lake City has the big temple. That place where we put snakes on our shoulders is one of the big voodoo temples for the whole world, so yeah just keep in mind this country is the voodoo king.

I forgot if I put it in my last email but the president of the relief society in the ward of Cocococdji died a few weeks ago leaving behind a husband and three kids the youngest of which was a few weeks old. It was a very sad moment, but because all the investigators knew her so well and the church is still new to them they thought the church was cursed and they won’t come back... so that’s just great. Slowly we can try to re-explain to them the plan of salvation and stuff but it will be really hard to get them back because she is the fourth member to die in like four months. I don’t think the church is cursed but lots of people do.

There are also more and more inactive in our ward for one reason or another, Cococodji is the best ward in Benin yet really there are some big problems which is kind of sad, but I’m not losing hope and little by little were doing our best to touch lives and bring in those sheep that are beginning to stray, but there are many.

I also had a lesson where I really felt the spirt this week. Sure you would think as a missionary that should be normal but, here there are like no quiet places, a million distractions for the investigators idk it’s rare to really feel the spirit in a lesson, sadly but it’s just normal. However, we taught this investigator at the church building and wow, quiet really makes a difference. Every other church makes tons of noise when they want to pray it sounds more like they are dying rather than praying but really the great prophet Elijah was right when he said

"And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice."

The spirit doesn’t like lots of noise, but its a really noisy country, so we make do.

In other news I bought a watermelon because I was so sick of the same tastes in my mouth all the time, and now I have a firm testimony that genetically modified foods are a gift from God because the disappointment I felt from eating that thing they said was a watermelon was too great to bear, it was small it had more seeds than fruit and it all tasted as if it was that nasty watermelon close to the rind. So yeah, it was not the greatest experience, but pineapples here still beat America’s every time so it’s not all in vain. Love you all!

I bought a watermelon
It didn't taste as good as it looked 
Ellison, me, Ny
8 months baby!