Monday, July 28, 2014

Freaking Out About Snakes and Stuff.

Howdy do! 

This week was pretty hectic and crazy. We had a lot to do and not much time to do it. I forgot my planner today so I don't remember exactly what happened so this wont be very detailed. 

Tuesday in the morning we helped a member with his bricks again. It was fun until the snakes came! Haha dont worry. While unloading the bricks we found a little snake. It took all 4 of us to kill it. After that we were super worried there would be other snakes in the stack of bricks. Then like 5 min later another snake came out! All of us jumped away and kinda freaked out. But we managed to kill it. Luckily we didnt see any other snakes. SO that was pretty exciting.

Thursday in the morning we left for surprise exchanges in Bugembe. Bugembe is about a 30 min drive from Iganga going towards Jinja. So thursday we worked the whole day with the elders there. It was a great day and we did a lot of good work. One good thing I like was that most of our appointments were at the church so we didn't have to go to the peoples houses. They came to us! That's the best way to do it. Also I went to Mpummude and did two baptism interviews for the DL there.

Friday morning we drove to Kampala for MLC. We left Bugembe at around 10:00 and reached the mission office at around12:00. At the office we got a bunch of supplies like pamphlets and other stuff. Then we went to the distribution center and got a bunch of more shtuff that was requested by the elders in the zone. Then we headed to the mission home. MLC started at 3:00. It was an amazing meeting and we discussed a lot of great things. President Chatfield talked a lot about discouragement and how it is one of Satan's greatest tools in his tool bag. One cool thing about this MLC is that we had the ZL's from Ethiopia and Rwanda connected through Skype. Normally they fly in the Rwanda ZL's every other month and then in Ethiopia there are two zones so the ZL's would alternated each month to fly in for MLC. It was costing a TON of money for the mission so this way of doing it with Skype saves a lot of money. Things are getting pretty fancy even here in Uganda! Afterwards Sister Chatield had ordered a bunch of Chinese food. It was soo good! Chinese food is delicious. She even made an amazing chocolate cake and we had it with vanilla ice cream. Food is the best.

Saturday in the morning at 6:30 a bunch of the ZL's that slept in Kampala went to the stake center in Kololo and played basketball for an hour. It was pretty fun. I haven't played bball for a super long time. We left Kampala at around 10;00 and got back to Iganga at around 2:00. We spent some time preparing an investigator called Kiprotich for baptism. We did a split and Elder Latola finished teaching him and preparing him for the interview then I went and did an interview for our District Leader. After I finished the interview we went back to Elder Latola and Kiprotich and our DL interviewed him. Then in the evening we went and had a dinner appointment with a new RM sister. She cooked some super nice food. She even made mashed potatoes!! 

Sunday was awesome. In sacrament meeting the Branch President gave a talk about the Restoration. It was powerful. He even went into detail about the priesthood. The church is true and we are the only church with the true priesthood authority given to us directly from Jesus Christ and through a prophet. After church we had the baptism. It was awesome! 

Today for pday we went to Walukuba in Jinja and played soccer with a bunch of other missionaries. Today is also the end of Ramadan. Ramadan is a Muslim tradition where they fast from dawn until sunset for a month. Today it is ending and it is even a public holiday. Iganga is packed with Muslims so we have seen a lot of it. Muslims are all walking around in their traditional clothing and even they are going to be having huge feasts at night. One thing that was a problem for us is that most of the businesses in Iganga are owned by Muslims so almost everything was closed. So we couldn't really do much shopping and we ran around for a long time looking for an internet cafe that was open because all of them were closed. Life in Uganda.

The video of the glacier made me really really miss the boat! That was a sweet video. 

When I was pulling my laundry out of the washing machine and hanging it to dry I noticed a HUGE hole in the butt of one of my pants. Haha better get that one fixed. Ive been noticing that my clothes are still good but almost to the point of being worn out. Some of my socks are getting big holes in them and my shirts are slightly yellowish. Seeing this makes me feel like I am an old missionary! Only 10 months left! 

Have a great week. Love you all.

Elder LeChem the first the second

Monday, July 21, 2014

Zone Conference, Bricks, and Teaching Gospel Principles

Another week gone as if it never even happened! 

Tuesday we spent all morning getting the brakes fixed on our truck. I didn't tell you last week but we had NO brakes for about two days. They went out last week Saturday at night and then Sunday & Monday we couldn't take it and so on Tuesday we finally were able to. We took it to a petrol (gas) station and had a mechanic look at it. Then after a bunch of craziness he finally referred us to a mechanic that teaches at a technical school in Iganga. He took us to this school and the guy looked at it. It turned out there was a big hole in one of the pipes that takes the brake fluid to the brakes. So it was big time leaking break fluid. So we finally were able to figure the problem out. The teacher guy ended up taking the pipe out (that was a hassle) then they took it and just put a weld over the hole. Then they put it back in and it worked! It took about two hours to get it all done. So we spent the whole morning doing that. It was pretty scary driving in Ugandas craziness with no brakes. But I am a safe driver and was able to keep us out of any danger. 

Wednesday we went on exchanges in the district here. I stayed in the area and Elder Latola went into the other side of Iganga. I was with Elder Mfolwe from Botswana. He is an awesome missionary and we had a great day together. We taught some referrals called Joseph and Henry. It was a great lesson. But Henry was super super excited about everything and kept trying to move ahead and explain things to himself then confuse himself. Then we would help him understand and then he would get super excited again and try to move ahead of the lesson. It was pretty funny. He is a good investigator. 

Thursday we had Zone Conference!! It was soo awesome. We had it at the Bugembe Chapel. It is a beautiful built building. Most of the zone conference was an open discussion. We were able to bring up concerns and things we are struggling with in each of the areas. Then we were able to talk about these things and President Chatfield and the AP's were able to help us resolve these concerns. It was a great learning experience and I left with a ton of new ideas for the work. Afterwards we had lunch. The senior couple for the Jinja Mission District is the Caspersons. Iganga Zone takes up half of the Jinja District. Sister Casperson made lunch. She made Shepherds Pie!!! She even made it in a bunch of crock pots. It was amazing and reminded me way to much of moms delicious food. I was inspired and I am going to make Shepherds pie either this week or next week. It was just too good. 

Saturday we went in the morning for service. We helped a member called David Baffa. We were taking bricks and piling them up. Im not sure what the purpose for piling the bricks was, but it was service and we did it! Haha it was fun though. I accidentally left my camera and work gloves on a log where we were working. I didn't realize it until Sunday after church. I was extremely worried. But when we went back luckily it was still there untouched. That was the first time I have ever forgotten my camera somewhere. It was pretty scary. Its a miracle that nobody went and took it. 

Sunday we had a great time at church. Every thing went very well. We had the District Presidency there and they spoke during sacrament meeting. Then I taught the Gospel Principles class. The lesson was about Sacrifice. It was a great lesson and a lot of people contributed so it wasn't just me talking forever. One thing that my mind was enlightened with is about what we are supposed to sacrifice today. In 3 Nephi Christ taught that we must give up animal sacrifice and instead we are to have a broken heart and contrite spirit. I recommend reading this lesson in the gospel principles book. There are even some examples at the end of the lesson of things that people have sacrificed. In the evening we went and had a dinner appointment with some of the YSA (young single adult) sisters in the branch. Don't worry their mother was home and we had a male member with us! Haha :) It was really fun though. I felt like I was at home just hanging out with a bunch of friends. The food was delicious and there was way to much! I piled my plate to almost overflowing. I love food!  

Today for Pday we didn't do anything fun! We ended up just staying at our house all day. It was pretty boring. But I did make some pudding! I made the white chocolate one. We are going to eat it tonight. Haha the food stories were for you mom! 

Yeah for Joey being gone now! Maybe you can call him Junior because he is Elder LeChemnant the second. Haha I make myself laugh. Thanks for all the pictures mom! I enjoyed them. Jacob is a dork. It doesn't make sense in my mind that Sarah is getting her driver's license! I cant comprehend such a thing. Haha :) the world is definitely going to be different next year when i am back. 

Why are so many people getting married!?!?!?!

If anyone complains of heat, try living in northern Uganda!!!! So no complaints from anyone especially you, Joey. :)

Thats all for now. 

Elder LeCheminant (the first) (the second)

Monday, July 14, 2014

ZL Exchanges and the Primary Program

This was such a fast week! I cant believe its already Monday again. 
This week was great and we did a lot of good things.

Tuesday in the morning we spent the morning at the house because our fridge stopped working so we had to have a repair man come and fix it. Then we went to teach Jared and Robert. We taught them about family history as a followup to teaching them about the temple. In the evening we went to a less active man called Kita. We have been reading The Family Proclamation with him. Its a great document! If its been a while since you have read it then I highly recommend going through it especially with the family!! 

Thursday after our morning studies we went and did some service for a member family called the Sempas. They are awesome! The family has been to the temple and are sealed. Even they have a daughter that is going on mission next month and she is turning 19 in the MTC! That is super rare in Africa! Most African missionaries are older than 21. We were helping them in their garden. We we clearing all of the old maize so they can begin preparing it for planting something else. This coming Thursday we are going back to continue working in their garden. After lunch we taught an RC called Barbra. We have been trying to help her read to Book Of Mormon. We decided to go through the title page with her. I have never read the title page with someone before. Normally we just focus on the Introduction. But I felt that it would be good to talk about the title page. It helps us to learn some important things in the Book Of Mormon. It specifically says that it was not written by Joseph Smith, but it was Translated. That instantly answers a lot of questions that people. Even the rest of the title page answers some very common questions that people have. I found that it is a great resource to use when teaching people!

On Saturday we went on surprise ZL exchanges in Mpumudde. We do surprise exchanges because there was a problem in the past were missionaries were purposefully planning out crazy days just to wear out their ZL's. So we surprise them! It also helps us to see how their days actually go rather then how they are supposed to go. We drove there Friday night and worked all day Saturday. I worked with Elder Okech (from Tanzania) and Elder Hamlett (from Virginia). Anyways, we had a great day except for the fact that all of our appointments fell through. We ended up spending most of the day tracting. It was rough but they learned a lot and I was able to give them some advice to help find good investigators.

Church yesterday was nice. It was the Primary program during Sacrament Meeting! They did a great job. The opening and closing prayers were both given by Primary kids. And they actually did it in English! Even there were two kids who gave their testimonies and two that gave talks. They did a really good job. Even one Primary girl was conducting the music for the meeting.They sang a song  called "The Family is of God." How do I know the name of it?... because I was playing the piano for it. Thursday night one of the primary teachers sucked me into playing the piano for them. I tried making excuses to not do it but they wouldn't accept it so I kinda had to. :) She knew how to persuade me to do it! Her name is Rita and she is an RM from the London South Mission. It turned out pretty good though and the song sounded nice. It is found at the back of the 2014 Sharing Time book thingy. 

One other thing that happened was that the water in our house went out! So today we had to go and fetch water with a bunch of jerry cans so we could wash the clothes and clean the house and shower. I had to do a bucket shower this morning! It kinda sucked!! The joys of being in Uganda were power and water are not reliable at all. Its a good thing we have the truck though. It made fetching water a bit easier :) so we kinda cheated a little bit

Mom I don't know how to garden.. sorry!!! Haha :)

Happy birthday Rick!

Have fun going to the MTC Joey! Too bad your not going to the best MTC. South Africa MTC is the BEST!! There's nowhere like it. Haha, kidding you will enjoy and learn a ton there in Mexico. 

I miss Prince William Sound.

Congrats to the Dyers for the new baby!! That's really exciting.

Have a great week everyone!

Love Elder LeCheminant

Monday, July 7, 2014

An Awesome Week!

So this week was pretty dang awesome!

Tuesday we went and did some service in the morning for a member. Then we went and taught a lady that was just baptized called Loy. She even invited a friend called Sam to come and meet us. So we will be starting to teach him. Later we drove 30 KM to a guy that was just baptized called Jared. He is awesome and comes to church every week! We are continuing to teach him and also a relative called Robert who we are preparing for baptism this month. Its a good thing we have the truck because they stay pretty far away from town. 

Wednesday we had ZDM (zone development meeting). Since it was a zone meeting we the ZL's were in charge. We talked about all of the discussion points that were at MLC last week. It was a great meeting. The zone is awesome!! Later we taught an investigator called David. He also stays a bit far away in the village. It is like 15ish minute drive from town. But he comes to church and is very prepared for the gospel so we are planning to baptize him later this month as well. 

Thursday we went and did some service again. It was at the Relief Society garden. The Branch here has a garden. They grow potatoes, beans, cassava, and several different green plants. It is open for any member who needs food to go and pick something and also for church activities they use the stuff they grow so they can save some money in the Branch's budget. Its an awesome idea! Anyways, we spent about 2 hours digging in the garden. Later we met with Loy and also went out to visit Jared again. 

Saturday in the morning we went to visit an RC called Waiswa. Unfortunately he wasn't there, but we were able to find another guy that stays next to Waiswa. His name is Akram. He used to be Muslim. HE is about 22 and works as an English and Literature teacher at a secondary school in Iganga. He was very well prepared to hear from us. So I believe we were meant to teach him and not Waiswa. Akram even came to church on Sunday which was awesome! After that we went on an adventure to the village! This was not just to the village, but we went deep into the village. We were referred to a member family who moved to the village a few months ago. They haven't come to church because it is a bit far away. They told us it would take maybe 15-20 minutes to drive there so we agreed thinking it wouldn't be very far. We had the RS President and a young boy who was related to the family with us to direct the way. We just continued to drive and drive and they just said keep going. As we went the dirt road slowly got smaller and smaller until it was barely the size of the truck. We continued to go for about an hour!! Then finally we reached their house. It was a beautiful place. Next to the house was a big rock/hill that I had to go and climb. So I convinced everyone to go up it. It took about 15 minutes to get to the top. The view was incredible. We could see green and rolling hills forever on all sides. We also took a bunch of pictures. The family was super happy to see us. We sat with them talking for like two hours. We even ended up teaching a few guys that stayed close by who wanted to hear from us. It was a great experience. It was so beautiful out there that I didn't want to leave. We got back to Iganga town at around 6:00. We were starving so we took a super late lunch. Then we went to visit Jared and Robert. We taught them about temples and the priesthood and missionary work. It was a great lesson. I love talking about the temple!!

I am short on time so I will just stop there for the week. 
Iganga Zone has three districts each with two companionships. Iganga, Bugembe, and Mpummude. The other two districts are right next to each other but Iganga is about a 30 minute drive from each. Bugembe has a new beautful built chapel! Its so nice. Elder Latola and I are both ZL's together. Most of the Zones have the ZL's as companions. But some zones, like Gulu, Lira, and Mbale, the ZL's are in separate companionships. Every zone has two Zone Leaders as usual.   

For 4th of July I didnt do anything. It kinda sucked. In Jinja a bunch of the Elders are from the US so they got together to celebrate. I didn't go because Iganga is about 40 minutes from Jinja and I am the only american so It kinda would have been pointless for the others. But it was still a good day and I celebrated in my heart! 

Mom sorry but my curly blond hair is not there anymore. Now it is just super short African style. Oh and thanks for the new blades and the new shirt. :) But I do have to say that whoever invented Cookie Butter is a genius! That stuff is amazing!!!!!!!! 

So there's the week. I cant remember anything else that I wanted to say. 
Pics are from our adventure to the village. One is me and Elder Latola.

 The other is just a view from the rock we climbed. You can kinda see the house we visited with our white truck parked in front. It is kinda in the bottom middle of the picture.

Love Me