Monday, February 24, 2014

Masianokeng, Lesotho!

OK, so I'll start by answering the questions you sent :)
I'll just wear the cultural stuff here to keep warm haha it's not like Provo, the snow isn't that much so I'll be fine. It will just be left here if you send it cause I can't take it with me..... If you send anything, don’t send anything expensive.
I traveled to my area on bus halfway and the other half by pick-up truck driven by missionaries. It was a 12ish hour trip.
My new area is called Masianokeng in Lesotho it is located east of Maseru (the capital city) Maseru is NOT comparable to a city back home....
Elder Allen is my new companion and he is from Texas. He is cool and we get along really well and we understand each other really well.
Our boarding is nice. It had a lot of bed bugs in the past but it's ok now....we hope. The other boarding for the missionaries in Maseru have thousands of bed bugs infesting their boarding and it's disgusting :(
We usually feed ourselves cause the people here don't have the means to feed missionaries. They are way poor. But I love em! The branch is small but we're working on it. There are a lot of cool people; quite a few people in the villages. We do tract. It's sometimes helpful but it's hard because half the people you meet only speak Sesotho. I speak Zulu with those that know it here, but I speak it better than any I've met yet. I introduced myself completely in Sesotho (the language here) in church yesterday, and it's been 5 days. I have already learned a lot of Sesotho. It's fun learning a new language :)
No, I did not receive a package before I left Umlazi, what did it consist of? I got the flash drive and I need to send it back soon.
We don't have any couple missionaries here cause they went home, so we are just a few missionaries out in the middle of a small kingdom in the mountains trying to do our best haha. So when I was traveling here I got to meet my baba or trainer. He goes home soon but we had a nice reunion. I love Elder Kinyaka. Eish that guy is cool. He told me I was his favorite companion. Everyone knows me here because of what he told them. Wow he is such a nice guy I love him. Ke o rata .
The culture here is cool. The water is bad; man it was a cool experience. Nothing here really can get me down. haha
We have a LOT of work to do, president even told me that but I can't wait to dig in and to bury myself in this work and submerge myself with their culture as well!
Ngiyanithanda (Zulu) futhi (Sesotho) Kea le rata!! Sala kahle!
Rato, Thando,
Elder Petrie
American Candy would be nice to give to the African children. Please pitch into the African children candy fund ;) hahah

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

New responsibilities, country, and language, all in one week!

I was soooooo happy about Jon, Krista, Lindsey, Sadie, Kailey, and Jackson’s sealing. I was announcing it all day to the other Elders... I was thinking about all of you!!!!! That is a really cool story about the sealing!!! How was it for everyone? 
That Zulu Book of Mormon you held in your hands is something I read from in studies haha Incwadi kamormoni obunya ubafakazi bukaJesu Kristu! I love that book. 
So....I have news. I will no more be speaking least for a while. I will be leaving the Zulu kingdom in fact. I will even be leaving Emzansi (South Africa) I have been transferred to the mountain kingdom of Lesotho. It is a whole new people, language, and culture. It is the most rural in the mission and probably most places...mud huts and dirt roads... It is super cold in the winter, and it's where I will be spending the winter.  It's going to be quite the experience. I have also been asked to be the District Leader. President called and told me all these things will stretch me, but with the Lord I will be an old hand in no time haha.
 I really am excited but it will be a challenge for sure. Dirt roads and a buckie (truck) will be fun though. I will have to learn the language of Sesotho. I am super excited for it though. Soooo it's so far from the mission home that letters and everything will come every month and a half. Sorry if it takes long to reply. 
How are you all back home? 
I am super sad to leave my area here at Umlazi, but I feel as if I was able to complete my work here, though this transfer was a huge surprise.  I love Zulus so much but oh well. The Lord has called me so I will go.
So I went to a mini Sea World today before I left cause all the Elders were sending me and my good friend Elder Davenport off.....We are both leaving. I almost got to kiss a dolphin but some Namibian lady beat me to it....Eish. I almost recieved a kiss from a seal but got beat out once again eish...Cut a guy some slack! :P hahaha But we had a lot of fun. 
I am so sad to leave but ready to continue. I love you all!!!!!!!
Elder Petrie 

Monday, February 10, 2014

"...till the purposes of God shall be accomplished...”

I'm soooooo happy for all the good that is happening back home. Thank you for that quote from the prophet...I don't know why but I just felt such a comforting spirit as I read it...Wow. Thanks mom. “No unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished, and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done.” I guess I have felt like I have been going through a bit of a hard time. The extra work we have been engaged in is helping me understand my physical and spiritual limits. I keep pushing though and will continue to throughout my life.

I have been really pondering this week. Not thinking but pondering. I have been reading about the Plan of Salvation and it has really hit me about the welfare of my soul. I feel as the boy prophet Joseph did when he had that question that helped bring about the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It has hit me that I feel the need to always know where I stand with God. This has become very important to me now. I feel that I want Him to be with me in every action I take, every word I say. I always think back to where I hope to go one day and who I hope to live with. I hope to live with my eternal family and my Father in Heaven and my Savior Jesus Christ, more than I have ever before. My eternal family (now and my someday family), including those that are getting sealed for time and all eternity in just a few days. My love goes out to you in this special time in eternity for you.

I love you all and know I really really pray for you all and I exhort you to continue on in the faith that we may all have this blessing of eternal life someday and we can live it together! I love you all. Ngiyanithanda. eSebenzo kaNkhulunkhlulu ngizoqobeka!!! The work of the Lord will continue!!!!
Love always and eternally,
Elder Petrie
P.S. Ma...the center of strength Idea was a reminder the Lord gave me from my patriarchal blessing. I didn't know it was in there until after we started setting them up. Yes, the Lord gave me that idea.

(This is from Elder Luddington. He served 6 weeks with Elder Petrie before he returned home from South Africa and I wrote him and ask him to interpret the Zulu and this is what he said.)
 Hey!!! It’s great to hear from you!!! I LOVE your son and just have to say he was such a riot to serve with and a great missionary, I got to spend 6 weeks with him and they were my favorite by far! PLUS his Zulu was so good by the time I was leaving he’ll be completely fluent by the time he gets home!! Ok so he said ngiya (I am) ni (referencing multiple people) thanda (love) haha so he said "I love you all" and then esebenza (working) ka (for or of) nkhulunkhulu (God) ngizo (I will) qobeka (continue) haha so he said I love you guys, I’m working for God and I’ll continue!!! Haha fun!!! He’s getting good!!! I hope he’s still doing well; 'Peach' (as he’s affectionately known) is one of my top favorites!! Tell him I love him when you get the chance and if he ever sends you Zulu you know where to come:) thanks for the email haha its so fun to hear Zulu!! Well time is flying and pretty soon you’re going to have an awesome RM to welcome home!!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Working to strengthen our brothers and sisters in South Africa!

Soooooooo I cannot express how happy I was to hear about Jon’s Endowment and all this stuff that has been happening!!! Holy cow!!! I am so happy. I was thinking about it for like the whole week and even the whole day in between appointments I was counting down the hours.
This work is just the best, hardest and funnest work ever. So, this week is pretty good. I will start with a nice experience I had. We went to this members house for dinner one Sunday and when we get there I smelled tripe...(Cow stomach) I thought, "no, they wouldn't do that to us." BUT!!!! THEY DID! It is probably grosser than you think it is. Eish it's sandy tasting and smells like poo. Eish I hate tripe haha. So I have now gotten to the point where I have eaten tripe, chicken legs (not bad), and much much more. I need to start writing down the food I eat cause some are just like...”what, why would you eat that?” ha
So this week we have had some great setbacks and progress. So, we had zone conference in which our beloved President taught about the importance of the first lesson and also about the growth of our mission. Umlazi where I work, (includes 2 Wards) needs to become a Stake. Because of this, we were inspired to get right to work. The spirit (I truly cannot take credit for this) prompted a wonderful vision of progress for our ward. We are going to set up something called “Centers of Strength.” These will include a family home evening set up in certain sections, (kind of like neighborhoods). They will involve the members from that area meeting together. Then once they are established people will invite friends. We will also attend, so we will be there to teach and answer any questions anyone might have.  We are hoping this will strengthen everyone. I urge you all to do this at home as well and invite your friends to a night of fun where you can speak of Christ, have fun, and meet people in your area.
So we have been working really hard to implement this, but on Sunday we had several setbacks with some of the people we have been working with. We need to help in the organization of the work here, so we can do actual missionary work. The Lord has called us all here for a specific reasons and I feel like this is the time. A lot of work lies ahead :/
Have a nice week and I love you!!!!
Elder Petrie