Monday, September 30, 2013

Short and Sweet!

Sooo my baba (companion) is leaving this transfer we're pretty sure...It's sad. I get along with him sooo well. People always told me that he was quiet and didn't talk much but I was able to relate with him and man....we have fun.
Sooooo we tracted into a father that is ready to hear the message and we have a baptism coming up this next 2 weeks!
General Conference is this week??? Cool! I guess we have to wait to watch it later because of the time difference. Pres. Bednar might come before I watch it.
I’m sorry; I have to go like NOW! I love you!  We did some good stuff this me we did :P
I love you! They're leaving now! Bye! Salenikhahle!
Elder Petrie

Monday, September 23, 2013

Adventures in South Africa!

Kayaking sounds fun!! I’m glad you and dad were able to go; can we do it in two years?
Soooooo this week we were suppose to have baptisms but we did not…SUPRISE! They have moved away or their parents have disagreed.....We have some solid ones coming up though!
Tracting here is very effective cause everyone wants to hear you. Ok...I need to clarify something. People always think that baptisms are crazy here!!! It is because these people all want to be baptized. If I met someone on the street right now I guarantee I could have him baptized in a month. The PROBLEM is some missionaries do this, and these people aren't really converted to the Gospel of Jesus Christ...that's why we have to try and (re)convert them!!!!! When we baptize people we make sure their testimonies of Jesus Christ are strong. We do not want to baptize people just so our numbers are high, we want to help them learn about, love, and live the Gospel of Jesus Christ, so they can receive the many blessings awaiting them! The problem is the church is small here and members don’t take them under their wing cause they are struggling to stay active much worldly pressures here…yep. TIA; This is Africa. So we baptize people that are ready.
Man, I love Brother Ritchey. I miss that guy! I need his email. How is sister Overton?? I wanted to talk to her about the mission if I could! That would be sweet cause I could talk to some old members about her if I knew who she taught!!
 I'm learning how to make all the African dishes I like, :) which means all the greasy fatty delicious ones :) I made chili beans for my boarding this week! I made really good beans and everything tasted great until I got to the chili! The chili powder here is made by Indians so it tastes like flippin curry! I was soooo angry cause I wanted chili beans!! I don't want to make them again.... too much work for failure :( And the tomato sauce sucks too: P No El Pato!
So I was teaching the youth this week every day after metric because they were doing a stake sing off competition. Elder Zsembery and I taught them the songs and rehearsed the crap out of them until they finally sounded great haha. We got a text from them during an appointment Friday night and they had won!!!! Woop! Even the boys won! I took a video of their singing. It's pretty cool. None of them paid any attention at first and I had to get them to sing!!! They finally did with much begging and pleading ha. Youth are still the same here.... I have so much more respect for Mrs. Ubrig and I feel so bad for all the pranks I did during choir......kinda. haha :)
So these drunk guys tried to talk to me the other day cause I was the only white guy around. Some are nice and some say "don't mess with me or I'll kill you!" I usually just say Ngiyezwa baba and walk away laughing haha. It means I understand. Then they think that we're friends and start talking to me right next to my ear, and the spit when they talk, haha. It's pretty fun when that happens ;) My companion was laughing the whole time too haha. Silly Africans.
Ok well I love you all and I love it here in the great Republic of South Africa! Love you!
Elder Petrie

Monday, September 16, 2013

Working hard in Africa!

How is everything in Vegas with Jon and Krista? Is everything going well at home? How are the dogs? How is my dearest favorite Nana? :) How is Grandy, and everyone else? What's going on now??
This week was good and bad. First we taught a member that was offended by someone at church cause of some African cultural differences... We went to visit her and she changed from not wanting to talk to us at all to feeding us and laughing with us and wanting us to come back. We had a lot of promises to come to church this week but as always, most bunked and didn't show. But, a glimmer of hope was these two sisters that were baptized a long time ago. We were able to meet them this week. They came to church and we visited them only ONCE! It was amazing. We also ran into a father led family this week and we began teaching them again! Ngiya themba! Then, We made an african steam bread named tcheqe and it was pretty good. We also play games with our investigators and member families :) It's fun for us AND them! What's better? I submit nothing! It really helps people to trust us missionaries as their friends, because we ARE! People don't understand how much we think about them and pray for them individually.
We were working with a boy this week who has become one of my very close friends. He has had some tough times with family though cause he is the only step child. He was with us at night and we got a text from his step mom that said he needs to be home NOW! So we rushed him home and his baba invited us in and gave him fire while we were there! It was soooo sad. They want him to do all the cleaning and cooking and everything around the house!! He got in trouble for playing soccer for an hour when his siblings don't do anything and are always playing. It is so sad. On another note, we were in a lesson (on exchanges so I was with Zsembery.) and halfway through I got a sick feeling....I had a cold sweat over my whole body and I needed to leave the house so I told Zsembery that we needed to wrap up (quitely) but a girl was interested so we carried on and I was dying....Bad haha So finally we went to the car and went to get the keys from the other guys to go to the chapel. I was driving like an African!!! That day was tough when we went back out and had to eat.
I got a letter from Sister Hansen and the Hansen family. It was sweet!!!! :) The picture they sent was sooo funny!
Ok, I'm going to tell you this sad story then another happy story! A boy we have been teaching for a long time has been prepared for baptism and was going to be baptized in two weeks. He has a testimony and KNOWS this church is true. He is about 16. We were teaching our last lesson and he memorized the ten commandments. He was reciting them when his baba came home and interupted. He started speaking really fast Zulu and I could only catch a little bit but I found out that he was saying he didn't want him to be baptized because he was the head of the family and he wants him to go to his church. We invited him to come to ours once and he said no. Poor guy. He won't be baptized now. The baba asked us to keep coming and teach him because he believes we are good people sent by God to teach people about the bible....We agreed to see him once a week now and we will be praying a lot for him. I know he will be able to be baptized and receive all the blessings of the restored gospel someday.
Ok...funny story then end. My comp was using the bathroom (side of the street) while we were leaving the township for the night and I was waiting in the car. We heard three gun shots right down the street and I said, "woza" really calm like and he came running while he zipped his pants hahahahaha He jumped into the car and I never have gone through gears sooo fast in the township hahahahahaha It was a drunk man walking around I'm sure...happens a lot.
So I gave a baptism talk in our ward because there was a baptism for the other Elders this Sunday! Soooo I was assigned to speak on baptism. but I ended up talking about Holy Ghost. Why? I will tell you! I get up to the stand and the guy next to me (tap tap is his name, we work with him a lot.) says "you are speaking on the Holy Ghost right?" I was like....nope! I'm speaking on baptism! Then he holds up his notes about baptism for his talk and I hold up mine then I decided to help him out and change my topic as the meeting started......Fun fun! Mission life in Africa :)
I love you all so much and miss you!
Love, the missionary workin his butt off in the land of cool lookin creatures, (I want to hunt)!

Ngiya kuthanda!

Elder Petrie

P.S. I helped the youth prepare a song they are singing in church!
P.S.S.  I love you mom and dad! Hurrah for Israel!!

Monday, September 9, 2013

I love Africa!

It is great when I get letters! I get really defensive and don't let anyone else touch them :P So, to your question, what is the weirdest thing members do here.....I'm not sure anymore cause I'm used to it. There is a lot I’m sure. But American culture seems so weird and distant. I guess they....speak half Zulu half English? OH! When they ask you to do something they don't say...”can you do this?” They say “do this.” They don't know my culture so it's acceptable.
Sooooo this week we did a lot of service for people. The first thing was helping to move a mattress and a dresser and that turned into cleaning and exterminating and a lot of other stuff, haha. When we moved the dresser, a couple rats ran out and some baby rats were chillin there. I looked for something to squish them but my companion beat me to it by killing them with his foot, haha I love Africa. Rats are pretty common here in houses (especially in township). A sister showed me 100 rand that was chewed up by a rat. The money was under her mattress.....that's about 10 dollars American, but it’s a lot of money here.
Just looking at the houses here you would think that the people dress in rags, like I was saying above, they have rats that randomly run in their homes, and they hang their clothes on wires right outside the front door. The weird part is they dress like Americans, and live in shanties. They would rather spend their money on nice clothes than on their standard of living. So, we help them clean their homes and plant gardens and do as much for them as we can.
We have been teaching a lot of the less actives here but we have also been teaching a few investigators. We are teaching a Baba that has had a problem with the law of chastity because he has lived with a woman for 30 years has kids and grand kids with her, but isn't married because he never had enough money for the bride price. It is called Labola, and I hate it. He is trying to work something out with the family now. He is awesome. He can't walk well without assistance on his left side because of a stroke and he is blind. He is the only person so far I have seen actually change! Another boy is being baptized soon and he is flippin awesome! He didn't have to change too much because he was already a good kid. One of the hard things is the ward has been having some issues with some sisters. They like to gossip a bit here. It has hurt some people a lot. We go and visit them and help them come back to church. It's tough because some people are really hurt....what they forget is that we come to church for the Lord. I wish people could just not be so worldly/human sometimes and do the right thing and serve each other. We have been teaching many people to serve and love one another lately.....coincidence? NOPE!
We got to go to a soccer game! A member asked us to go and President said YES! So we went to a world cup qualifier game and saw South Africa beat Botswana 4-1 there is an umlungu on the team and every time he got the ball the crowd screams "Umlungu!" hahaha He also scored and some Zulus shook my hand and said thank you, haha. They are sooooo full of the Spirit. They are always pretty happy...(When they aren't drunk. haha) Well I love you all! Have a good week! I am out of time!
Ninemandla! (I looked this up and I think it has something to do with "strength," someday he will translate for us)!
Ngiya nithanda (I believe this says I love you all).

Elder Petrie

Monday, September 2, 2013

Serving, Teaching, and Learning!

Mom, what you learned in the Doctrine and Covenants is true. How deep is that? I know it’s true. We are involved in a work way more important and special than we know!!! It's amazing. I love this work.
I don't have too much time!! Sooo. This week has been great!!! We have been doing heaps of service at Bishops house! He is a ....funny...guy he is really strict and has a strange sense of humor...haha but He gets things done!!!
I took a personality test this week on our free time in the boarding and it turns out I'm a yellow red. I like to work hard but I like to have fun doing it....Pretty accurate? My companion thought so haha. Working hard and being boring is no fun!!
So we went to the Khomo sisters house last night and we told them to teach us about callings in the church. They had prepared full lessons (never happens) and they said they were ready to accept them! The Spirit is working with us all the time but most the time we do not recognize it because it’s so subtle. We are setting up a "study" group with this guy and his friends from an African church that is versed well in the Bible! It is nice, except that everyone interprets the Bible in so many different ways; I am grateful that we have a Prophet on the earth today that can help us to understand what the Lord would have us do!
Elder Bednar (one of the Twelve Apostles), is coming here in October :) Jealous? ;) haha It will be fun! I hope he announces where the Durban Temple will be built!! :)
Thanks for keeping in contact with my good friends!! It is sooo nice to have a family that loves me and takes care of me even when I'm in Africa haha. It is pretty wild here at times.!
I can speak isiZulu pretty well and I understand it as well. I pray in isiZulu and I can bear my testimony in it :) I teach in English but I talk in isiZulu. The people here love it when I do. Ngiya koluma isiZulu ngoba ngiya thanda abantu ba zulu. I speak it because I love the Zulu people. I had a tie made into a Zulu tie as well haha (missionary fun stuff). Everyone loved them at church haha.
 I am eating more and more every day! But I can't get's not even fair haha Ngiyafuna a big belly manji!!! (I think he is saying, “I want a big belly now!") Haha! J
Elder Luddington s going back to Wyoming today and we have to say goodbye :( I will miss him for two years :(:(:( He was such a good missionary! I love this work and I know it is true! Love you! Time's up :(
Love always,
Elder W. Clay Petrie
P.S. I got your other package :):):) I will send the pictures soon! They are fun!
P.S.S. I love you!!!!!