Wednesday, March 30, 2016

3/29/16 - Easter, Transfers, & Doing God's Will

Elder Mack said Monday all of the cybers were closed because of Easter so they were allowed to email on Tuesday.

Salama Daholo ary tratra ny Paque!

Hey y'all!  Happy Easter!  I hope everyone had a great time thinking of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ on this special holiday and spending time with family!  Well, it's transfers again!  I will be with Elder Anderson till he's done!  It's so weird to think that he is almost done - him and Elder Wootan.  I will see Elder Wootan at BYU which will be way cool and way fun.  Elder Liao is going back to Tana, Elder Snell is going to Antsirabe (lucky duck!).  We had a fun week.

- Monday we had a goodbye dinner with Stefano.  He left to Tana on Friday.  He will be a great misssionary in Cote d'Ivoire. 

- We taught a new family.  The dad's name is Asana.  We had a great first lesson.  He asked a lot of good questions.  He is muslim but a less active one and it's probably because he doesn't agree with some of their traditions.  He told us he believes in the New Testament and that Jesus is our Savior and Redeemer as well as the Son of God.  Way weird but cool!  He asked a lot of questions about God and after the lesson and testimonies he said that he really wants his wife in the next lesson to hear our message.

- We taught a less active man named Patrique.  He has been less active for a while but he told us that he doesn't like where his life is and he wants to go on a mission.  He came back to church! :)

- Arlett is one of our special investigators. She was living with this guy named Diam.  He was taught and wanted to get baptized. Since they are not legally married, it was either they get married or they split up which of course they did not want to.  But they split up and he got baptized. Arlett was not interested whatsoever.  Diam got to the point where he got the priesthood but then Arlett moves back with him but still won't get married so now he can't use his priesthood. She has been taught but she's not trying to find out the truth.  It's kinda sad.  During the last lesson we taught them about the will of God and not doing our own will.  We explained that it is the will of God for all of us to be married. We had her write an entire list of why it's good to get married and then they wrote a long list. Then we asked them to write what's bad about marriage.  They couldn't think of one.  So what's stopping them?!  Tsy fantatro akory!!!

- The highlight of the week has to be our first lesson with Felicia.  She is a referral from President Foote.  When President came here a few months ago he contacted Felica at the hotel he stayed at and she wrote her info on a paper and he stuck it in his pocket.  He forgot to pass it to the missionaries. When he came back a week ago he saw her again and she wondered why missionries didn't stop by.  President then looks in his pocket and the note was still there.  They both laughed and then Sunday President hands us that paper.  We contact her and she is way cool.  She loves to laugh but she also loves to learn.  We get there and automatically become best friends.  She had her Bible and a notebook ready to learn.  She already told us that she wants to change. She told us she has a smoking problem and she has asked for help from God but she feels he hasn't answered. We expalined to her that God works in mysterious ways and a lot of times he answers prayers through his servants so we told her that we would help and she was really happy about that.

Well guys have a great week!  Love ya!  Bisous bisous!
Elder Mack

Flooding pic - it rained really hard one day

We had an appointment with a less active so we removed our shoes, rolled up our pants and were off

Sending off Stefano

Hawaiian Spiderman!

Best of friends #candidpicsfodays

Greeting our peeps

Shhh...  zzzzz...

Me and Elder Wootan #byubros

The pier!  We be fishin!  #caughtnotin which was way sad cause Malagasies had just string, a hook, and baby shrimp and they were catching a lot.

Monday, March 21, 2016

3/21/16 - President in Mahajanga, Splits, & Baptisms

Inona moa ny andro tena tsara eto?  Rehefa mafy ny kaka ary misy batisa!
Hey y'all!  Great week this past week!  Transfers are coming up this Saturday but we kind of already got our news.  I mention it down below.  Let's get to the lettah already :p

- President and the APs came down to Mahajanga for splits, interviews, baptism, etc.  It was awesome!  I got to have my interview on the beach!  What what!  There's a pic of the interview but it totally looks like I'm getting railed on by President.  Haha!  It was an awesome interview and it's so weird to think that I probably have only a couple more interviews left with him.  Splits with the APs was awesome too!  They stayed from Thursday till this morning and I got to go out with both of them.  Elder Glazier and Elder Covey are incredible teachers and I learned a lot.  Splits are the best! You learn so much from other missionaries and apply what you learn into your own teachings. #splitsfodays
- Danio is progressing well.  He came to church on Sunday.  It was cool.  Hardy's brother Teddy has been less active for a long time because he has been working on Sundays.  He says the reason he has to work is to get money for Hardy to go to the temple to be sealed to her husband.  Teddy had an interview with President and afterwards he came up to me and just hugged me and told me that he's going on a mission!  He came to church yesterday for the first time in a little while and come to find out that he knows the investigator that came to church for the first time yesterday.  Now he's going to help us teach him!  Woo hoo!

- President started a few transfers for the farther areas a little early.  Elder Reynolds left to Tana. We did get Elder Bowen who is wayy sick as well!  Freaking Elder Coleman is going to Fort Dauphin!!! What the heck!? #SAMBATRABELAHY

 - We had a great lesson with Tsihita and his family. We focused a lot on the priesthood with them this time and where the prophet fits into the picture. The spirt was very strong and things were clicking in this families heads.  It was one of those lessons that I felt I truly left my testimony there. They are a family that likes their church. I forgot something at their house and so yesterday right before church starts he comes to the church just to give me back the item.  He looked inside the church and told us that he'll come to church next time but he had a program already planned for that day. Well, thats a start. :p

- The other Elders in Mahajanga had baptisms this last Saturday!  Woo hoo!  They have two more coming up!
The church is definitely true!  I love being the Lord's instrument in this incredible work!  Love you guys!  Have a great week!  Bisous bisous!
Elder Mack
Sunday dinner in Mahajanga (pic from Sister Foote)

Dry fish anyone?

This church is called The Deeper Life Church.  Found this sign while tracting.  Haha!

It's Elder Reynold's hump day!!! We're taking him to get burgers.

The APs are always on their phones... Haha!  JK

Cleaning the church

Being funny on the beach.  Sister Foote said, "I can't put that on Instagram!" 

Thirsty anyone?

Making coconut juice!

Our Abby Road pic attempt.  Eh - we'll try this one again later... Haha!

Walk the plank!!!

Interview with President Foote on the beach (pic from Sister Foote)

Mahajanga missionaries (pic from Sister Foote)

Elder Mack and Elder Bowen (pic from Sister Foote)

On our way to the baptism (pic from Sister Foote)

Just found this pic from Zone Conference (pic from Elder Tainter)

Monday, March 14, 2016

3/14/16 - Pause button, Pinky Promise, and Another Testament

Aiza kosa efa vita ny Vacance!!!!

Hey y'all!  Well, vacation is over.  Haha!  We got back to Mahajanga on Wednesday and are just way pumped to work our hearts out.  Elder Anderson and I came up with a lot of goals that we want to accomplish and we really just want to go out with a bang!  Elder Anderson goes home on May 4th but will probably be back in Tana at the end of next month so we really only have a little over a month left together.  I'm blown away with how fast time goes.  It's not too long till my sister Lindsay graduates, then summer is here, and I go home, then start BYU BABY!!!  If anyone finds the pause button please send it on the next flight to Madagascar!  I want to give a shout out to Bradah Damon Hooker who got his call to Taiwan! Congrats bro!

- Tuesday we got to have a soiree with Manda!  My Malagasy mom missed me a ton.  :)  We almost couldn't have dinner with her because we couldn't find a member help to go with us.  Me and Elder Anderson surprised Jewels and brought him with us!  We had a great time catching up with them.  

- We are teaching a new family.  Erik and Fanja are the parents.  Erik is way cool.  He's like an army buff dude.  We are really trying to get him interested in reading the Book of Mormon.  We got to read scriptures with them last Friday and they are understanding.  They are asking questions and we can see their faith slowly growing.  They actually go to a different church.  It's called The Song of Jesus Church.  Never heard of it but they are very interested in learning about what we believe and we are hoping to see more progress.

- Saholy is doing great!  She is doing her homework and notices the spirit with her when she reads.  She is starting to include her kids a lot more.  Three of her children came to church.  I love teaching this family.  Elder Anderson was surprised with how well she is progressing and we are both very  proud of her.  We hope to baptize them next month!  We'll see.

- Tsihita and his family are still doing good.  They see a need now for another testament of Jesus Christ.  They are really wanting to read The Book of Mormon.  Tsihita downloaded gospel library and reads it on his tablet.  It's way interesting when they react to relationships between The Book of Mormon and the Bible.  For example, we taught them about baptism.  The Bible doesn't say anything about children being baptized but The Book of Mormon explains it better.  We showed them how Lehi lived during the time of King Zedekiah and they saw that the story continues in The Book of Mormon.  They were blown away and it was a way good feeling :)

- Julian is still way cool.  He loves reading The Book of Mormon with us and then we help clear things up.  We're trying to get him to church now.

- Church was good.  We had 2 less-actives come back to church. Ulrich has been less active for a long time.  We went to his house and made him pinky promise to come to church and he did :)  Jean Mark came today as well.  I think he's finally run out of excuses for not coming to church so he came.  Haha!

- We ate sea turtle at Hardys!  Yum!!!!!

Love you guys a ton!  Have a great week!  Bisous bisous!

Elder Mack

Waiting in Nosy Be for our plane

Working out at the gym with Elder Nelson and Elder Evans

We visited Mama Tendry in Ambohimangakely

My mom in Betongolo made heart shaped waffles for us

Soire at Mandas!!  It was hard to teach Jewels how to use the camera.  Haha!

Where is Stefano going on his mission???  We brought his mission call back from Tana.

He's going to Cote d'Ivoire!!! (It's in Africa by Ghana)

Pizza delivery from Marcos!!!

everyone loves the ukulele

teaching primary

Sea turtle is way delicious!  In Malagasy it's called Fano.

We went looking for these guys on P-Day and found them hiding from the sun in a broken down boat

Under the pier in the shade

Monday, March 7, 2016

3/7/16 - Bountiful, Mamas, & Elder Hamilton

Tsy niasa tam ity herin andro ity izaho noho ny vacance!!  Hey y'all!  How's it goin?  Yah well, I'm on vacation so no big letter today :p  Haha!  Joke.

- We flew in last Wednesday for the Zone Conference!  We have just been doing splits fo days. 

- Last Thursday I went with Elder Stringfellow and Elder Cooley!  Woo hoo!  The Bountiful boys!  They are both way cool and I love going with elders from my group!  That's the first time I got to be with Elder Cooley and he is a great and fun missionary.  We tracted pretty much the whole day. 

- Friday I got to go on a split with Elder Nelson and Elder Bingham in Ambohimangakely!  It was incredible.  I got to have a soirĂ©e with Mama Tendry again!  She is my Ambohimangakely mom and took such good care of me and Elder Iata! 

- On Saturday I went with Elder Tainter to Itaosy and boy has he progressed a lot!!  He is way good at Malagasy now!  I got to pretty much sit back and relax and let him do everything! 

- On Sunday I went to church at Betongolo!  We didn't tell Mama in Betongolo we were coming and when we walked in we saw her chuckle.  Haha! 

- Monday was the Zone Conference!  Elder Hamilton (the general authority) came to the meeting and he answered a lot of our questions.  He shared a talk that Elder Christofferson gave.  It was about the freedom to choose.  Twas way good. 

We go back to Mahajanga on Wednesday.  I hate planes now... haha!  Well, love you guys!  Have a great week!  Bisous bisous!

-Elder Mack

Thank you Elder Tainter and his mom for this picture!

Zone Conference in Antananarivo with Elder Hamilton of the Seventy

Thank you Sister Foote for these two pictures!  Crazy missionaries.