Jul 8, 2013

07-08-13 Second Week in Africa and Lovin' It!

So I received all your questions and will give answers to them at the end of my stories for the week.
First story: During our personal study at the start of the week our bathroom was literally destroyed. (Don’t judge until you read on…) We were doing personal study in the morning when all of a sudden we heard large crashes. So, we left our desks and looked in the bathroom. To our alarm some tiles had fallen from the wall (all the walls are tiled but are very low quality). So all four of the elders in our apartment crammed in the bathroom to survey the damage, when all of a sudden the entire wall of tiles came crashing down! We grabbed the mirror to protect it from breaking. After much screaming (like little girls) and hysterical laughing - we are down one usable bathroom.  lol
Talking with everyone is so great in Africa because so many people are willing to listen. On Wednesday we were walking in the median of the road, so as to be able to talk to people on both sides of the street who may have a possible interest.  We came across 3 trucks carrying people. These are basically big military trucks with metal cages fixed to the flat bed, they hold about 50 people each. So we come across these trucks and I said to Elder Baker, "That’s a lot of people we could talk to."  With no reply he kept walking and then after 100 yards or so he turned around and said "Let’s go". So with brochures in our hands we walked through these massive crowds trying to talk with everyone. Needless to say we had no more brochures after that. We have also found that traffic jams are great for contacting! We simply walk in the streets and hand our brochures to everyone who has windows rolled down - its great!
Our fourth of July was spent celebrating at night with hamburgers filled with cheese and bacon. Yum! We also had a morning fireside about why America is the best!  I am sure Ferious and Robert will be pleased to hear about our patriotic acts.  Even in the Congo there was a little band of Americans celebrating!
Since I’ve arrived we have 3 investigators with baptismal dates and will hope to add 4-5 more this coming week. There is no reason why a Stake couldn’t be created in the Congo. We have some great investigators. Some of which have been meeting with elders for 2 months and coming to church - no reason they shouldn’t want to be baptized. It seems like the work is becoming more organized every day. We are keeping our area book up to date now and are becoming efficient. (area book = a day timer type book to keep track of all we are doing)
Note: Julius is basically answering questions we emailed him here:

·         I will send pictures soon.
·         Point noire is basically urban decay. There are ships on the beach and airplane grave yards. Trash is everywhere.  
·         I made it through the airport fine actually, honestly no problems - the Africans know not to mess with me! (haha)
·         We usually eat American foods because we have to make all of it.
·         I have had some African things but most of the food is fried in oil. Peanut sauce is basically oily peanut butter with meat in it. That is descent but a little gross in large quantities!
·         No fried bananas but I will look for them.
·         Yes, I am adjusting quite well. Because its "winter" here it’s usually in the 80s and there are not too many bugs which I am thankful for. I will answer that again in a few months when the weather changes.
·         I get 50000 francs every two weeks for food and it’s more than enough. (USD $98)
·         Its winter so no rain or thunder yet.
·         I am actually going to the beach today for P-Day! We are playing soccer and having hot dogs to celebrate the 4th!
·         We are teaching about 25 lessons a week - meaning 5-7 a day!
·         In-actives are great but I have had some difficulty in making sure our companionship doesn’t teach them forever. After all - our job is to reactivate them and then move on to others that need our help. At some point you have to trust the reactivated member to stand tall by themselves.
·         My French is awful! Some days it’s good, some days I’m convinced I don’t speak French at all.
·         I don’t really miss home comforts - we have good housing.
·         I love the joy you find in missionary work! Every morning you wake up with a renewed sense to find everyone. You literally walk around all day with the biggest smile on your face!

I love all of you and miss you so much, but  I want to be where the lord wants me - right now that’s Africa!
Elder Johnson