Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Week 20: "And yet… The Work Progresses"

This was a stellar week! 

We started it off with a real bang this Monday as my companion lost his ticket to claim his bike when we were at the market. It was actually pretty funny, because we don't speak very much Khmer! They wouldn't let him have his bike and said for him to come back later in the day so they could see if anyone else will take it. We decided to not fight it and just went to get our hair cut… and wait it out. We both cut our hair for a dollar #DealsForDays and the people there said that I looked a lot like Justin Bieber… 

which I didn't take too much as a compliment. 

Then we came up with the idea that we could go home and grab a camera with a picture of my companion and his bike. We found one and brought it back to them, and for some reason they thought it was way funny. Oh… and when I woke up in the morning, I began brushing my teeth as usual. When I looked down I noticed that my toothbrush was littered with little black worms. For some reason there were little worms all over our toothbrushes. 
It was gross!     
                              On Tuesday we had an amazing lunch provided by our Senior Couple, the Baileys. We get to go eat lunch at their house during the last week of every transfer. We had pulled pork sandwiches, corn, and Sister Bailey made some amazing peach cobbler. We also celebrated the going home of my old companion and trainer, Elder Barker. It was pretty sad. Oh also, I don't know what it was… but I had some serious stomach problems. I could have received a frequent customer’s card for how many times I had to go to the bathroom. It really wasn't fun. We got a call later that day from a younger member named Nghia. He is like 14 and called saying he wants to start preparing for his mission and wanted to come with us. We went by to pick him up and it was so cool to see him waiting outside his house… all dressed up in his church clothes. Since then he has come with us almost every night this week. 

Wednesday, we decided to try out an angle for contacting in the morning. We went out, and as we were riding down the road, my companion stopped and said he had a feeling that we should talk with an older guy that he noticed a few streets back. So we went back and began talking to him. It turned out that spoke Vietnamese… and after some small talk, he said we could come by his house and talk some more. We ended up teaching him the entire first lesson. We taught him one more time since we first met him and he has accepted the Book of Mormon. 

Thursday was both good and bad. We had our weekly planning, and Elder Hibbert said that he still had money left over from his birthday, that his mom wanted him to spend on us… so he bought us all these humongous foot-long burgers called "Bazooka Burgers". They are so good. 

Then we went out and helped the Branch President some more while we waited for our investigator. We had previously set up a “members help” for the lesson, but decided that that particular member wasn't the best choice in helping our investigator progress because she is super intense, so we asked a different member. We went upstairs to go over the things we would share with the Branch President… and we found that super intense member asleep. I guess she learned where we were going to meet, and came two hours early so she wouldn't miss it. I am super grateful that our member wanted to help, but that was kind of nuts.
Anyway, we started the lesson and then things took a turn for the worst. You know how in those TV shows, like “When Animals Attack” or whatever… and the narrator says, "…and then things took a turn for the worst" That was what happened in our lesson. Our member help started talking about super deep doctrine while talking really fast… and wouldn't let anyone else talk. This went on for about an hour, when we finally got a chance to end it. I felt bad for the investigator…as that was only the second lesson with the missionaries. 

Friday we were out contacting and this homeless guy came up to me and started asking me questions. I took him aside because everyone had told him to go away. I sat down with him and ended up teaching him a lesson.  He told me about his life, and why he was living on the street. He said he used to travel a lot and how he studied to be a doctor. It seems that he had just made some mistakes and was living on the street. I told him that there is always hope, and he has the power to turn his life around. He agreed with me, and said he wanted to meet again this next week. I guess we will see how that goes. After that, we went and picked up my old Trainer, Elder Barker for the last few hours before he would board the plane to go home. It was a special experience getting to serve with such a seasoned missionary. 
We went to a recent convert’s house for lunch because she said she had prepared some food for us. Her first dish was rice porridge with a lot of squid in it. The second dish was actually pretty good, just some way good meat on rice with a little bit of pig skin shavings. Lastly was a bowl of soup with a whole boiled small chicken. This chicken was pure black. I asked what it was called. She answered me in English, "Chicken Black Man". I see this could be taken as offensive, but she is Vietnamese and English isn't her first language. I laughed so hard I almost died. She asked me if I would eat it but I told her I was really full. Actually, I just didn't want to eat it. I think she had made it as a joke because then she smiled and asked me if I was scared. Taking that as a challenge, I broke off the little foot (talons and all) and popped it into my mouth. She kind of made an "eww" noise and then laughed. It was really gross! She waited a little before telling me that you aren't supposed to eat the feet. (haha)… Oops. 

Saturday we contacted a whole bunch of referrals from the sisters. Then we went over to teach a little lesson to the Branch President's daughter who is preparing for baptism. She did not want to learn. It was a rough lesson. 

Sunday was...different. We met with an investigator before Sacrament meeting and taught a lesson. We made a whole bunch of calls reminding people about Church, and telling members about the investigators that would be coming in hopes to get them fired up. It worked! We had 74 people at church… which is only two away from our year goal! We had five investigators at sacrament. It was so cool to see everyone coming. The only thing that stunk (literally), was right as sacrament was starting. One of the ladies brought a sickly baby who wasn't wearing pants. He pooped all over the floor! It immediately started smelling like death, and we all hurried to try and clean it up. The members started smelling it… and kind of started freaking out. After using a substantial amount of glade air freshener and wet wipes, the mess was cleaned up. It wasn't but 15 minutes later when the dang baby pooped all over the place again. 
People really started freaking out! It was nearly a disaster. People were gagging and covering their faces with scarves and towels. Two more cans of air freshener were brought out, and people started yelling at the mom with the sick baby. It was sad when they made her take the baby outside. The missionaries didn't really know what to do. It was hard. After church, we went out and taught some lessons.  I was talking about the day with my companion and I looked down at my foot and noticed this pretty big black spot on it. I think there is like a fungus growing on it. I have to go talk to Sister Moon, the mission president's wife. Oh and yes, I do wash my feet. This week was a blast, hope you all have an amazing week too! 
Love you all, Elder Morris  

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