Monday, December 28, 2015

Christmas in the Congo

Dear family and friends,
   How are you all doing!? I hope that you all had a great Christmas with your families! Thank you so much to all of you that wrote me this week...I really appreciate it! This week was really good, but it was a really tiring one because missionary work is really slow during the weeks with lots of holidays! But it was still very good and the Lord blessed us here in Congo.

   The highlight of the week had to be Christmas day! We got up and did the normal things, but I got to open up the package that my parents sent me and it was amazing! I especially like the cookie butter and I am eating it very wisely because it needs to last me a long time! And everyone in the apartment loved their ties and they all said thank you for the gift! Also,I found shirts that were really cheap so I got each person a shirt and gave it to them and they were all really happy and we all took photos and drank sparkling cider together. After, we got together and sang Christmas hymns because Africans really like to sing and it was a lot of fun. After that we just hung out at the apartment all day and did little things and talked. I worked on making my bead tie which Elder Mannasse showed me how to make and it was sick! And after that we headed to the mission offica and I got to talk with the family! It felt really good to see them and talk with them and now I only have 1 Skype left before I go home so I'm slowly becoming old! After that, the Nelsons gave us pizza that they had cooked and it was soooo goooood! I haven't eaten that in almost 3 months I would say! But that was the end to our Christmas day here in Bascongo!!

   As for our amis, they are doing really well. Here in Africa, Christmas is a holiday for kids and not adults. When we were talking with one of our amis, before the lesson her daughter came up and put all the gifts that she got on my lap and she was really happy to show me them! Then we talked with her mom about the law of chastity because she lives with someone she's not married to and we challenged her to talk with him and pick a date to be married and to pay the dot (dowry)! Then on Sunday she told us that she had talked with him and with her mom and then she got a really, really good job offer which was amazing! If we will just put our trust in the Lord then He will work miracles in our lives! 

   This week I ponderized Luke 2:10-11 which talks about the birth of Christ. And in doing that, I thought of when the angel said that the news will be unto all people. The news of Christ is good news to all people and we all have need of Him and as we let Him into our life and surrender ourselves to Him, He will make us stronger than ever before.

   But that's all for this week! For a challenge, go drink some creme soda for New Years Eve! I love you so much and I'll see you next year!

Elder Legerski

Monday, December 21, 2015

Chrismas is About Family, Not Things

Hello everyone!
   How are you all doing in the cold and in the snow!? The heat is good here in Africa and I am really loving it! I can say that I never know if it is hot or not because I just sweat all the time and now I am used to it! But this week was so much fun and I have so much to write; I don't know if  I'll ever
have enough time, but the good thing is that I will tell you all when I get back home. I want to thank everyone who has sent me emails this week...I really appreciate it and I hope that you all have a good week! I also want to say Happy (late) Anniversary to my Grandma and Grandpa Routh; I am sorry for not saying that earlier! Also, Happy Birthday to my Dad...I hope you don't have a ton of gray hair now! And also a Happy Anniversary to my Mom and my Dad...I am so glad that I can call you two my parents!
    As I said earlier, this week was awesome. I found out a lot of good things. 3 Branch Missionaries that I worked with when I was in Cameroon are going on missions and that is such good news! Getting young men and women out and on missions is so important and I am so happy to know that these people have made the decision to serve the Lord!
    Also, I spoke with Elder Tshibanda (my companion in my last area) and things are going well back in Aeroport! It really strengthened my testimony of sowing Gospel seeds even if you're not there to reap them. Since I left, 6 of the old amis that I taught got baptized and this last weekend, Binta and the family Albertine got baptized!  I was so happy to hear that and I know that no matter who is there, that we are all doing the same work!
    We all went out to lunch as a mission (well, the Missionaries here in Brazzaville) yesterday and it's because of that that I am writing on Tuesday and not Monday. It was a lot of fun and the food was really good and now all that I am waiting for is Skyping with my family on Christmas! But Elder Dou and I went to Park-n-Shop and got loaded up on sparkling cider for Christmas day, so it should be like I am back home!
    Over these last 2 weeks I asked all of my amis and members what they do for Christmas and they usually just get together as a family and eat together. Because they don't have a lot of money, buying gifts and all that is really hard for them to do. So it's just a time to be together as a family for them. It makes me really miss my family and remember the time spent together, rather than the gifts given.
    But that's all for this week folks! I love you all so much and I hope you all have a good Christmas and a Happy New Years! I pray that we may all think about the birth of our Savior and all that He has done for us. And I pray that we may all start a new year with a life that reflects His life.

Merry Christmas to all and for a challenge, just have fun with your family and don't let material things get in the way!

 Elder Legerski

Monday, December 14, 2015

Temple Marriage and Church Attendence: So Important:)

Hello my family and friends!
   How are you doing!? Well, while you are all really cold and freezing, here its really, really hot! Now I get cold even with the fan at night, so I can  say that I am adapting! But this week was really good, as all weeks are on the mission! This time of the year is really awesome to work! This week we met a lot of good people and had a lot of good experiences!

  This week we got to meet Sister Juvette, who is the woman that our former elder's quorum President wants to marry and she is now becoming really interested in the church. The main topic that she wanted to talk about was the temple because she has heard a lot about it, but she was confused about why we had to go to the temple. While we talked to her about the temple,  I really felt the importance of a temple marriage and how thankful I am for the chance that we had to go to the temple as a family! 

   Also, we were talking with Nancy, who is the daughter of a non-active member, and she couldn't come to church this Sunday because she had chores to do at home and she was really sad that she couldn't make it to church and it really stuck me because going to church might seem like such a little thing, but this little thing makes such a big impact on our lives. 

   But that was our week in a wrap! Not everything is perfect, but we still have to keep going out and helping people and sharing this Gospel! This coming week we have a lot of meetings for the mission and it will be a lot of fun! Last week, I "ponderized":
Jacob 4:6 https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/jacob/4.6,7?lang=eng#5 and this week, it will be 
and as I am doing this, I am trying to find ways that I can become like Moroni and also like Christ. 

   Thank you so much for all the emails and I hope all of you college students have survived finals! I love you all so much and I'll see you in 7 short days again!

Elder Legerski

Monday, December 7, 2015

"Ponderizing" and Realizing that Grubs Taste Like Peanut Butter

Dear family and friends,
  Thank you so much for all of the birthday wishes that you all sent to me! When I opened up my email, I saw so many messages and I smiled the whole time reading people's birthday wishes! I want to say thank you once more! That means so much to me and it was just simply amazing. As for my birthday, I didn't do anything too amazing; I went to a boutique and bought food and other that that it was just a normal day! That is the thing with a mission, you just forget yourself and you just lose yourself in the work and sometimes you are so busy trying to do the Lord's will that you forget about yourself, which is a great thing! But it was a really good birthday and I really enjoyed it, but I'm ready the spend the next one with my family at home!

This week for us was really good! On Wednesday, we were meeting with the niece of our former elder's quorum president and she said that she was too busy and she had a lot do to, so we went ahead and took the broom and swept the parcel and when I say sweep, it is all dirt so you sweep to remove all the trash and also, it makes the dirt look good! It is hard for us to understand, but it makes sense to the people here! After sweeping, we washed the dishes for her and it went really well. I really enjoyed the chance that we had to do service. It's really hard to find opportunities to serve here, so we jump at every occasion. 

Also, this Sunday was really amazing. We found a less active family and the mom is a member, as well as the oldest child, but the other 3 are not and the girl who lives with them isn't either. Well, we go to their house about 2 or 3 times a week and we are working with the kids who aren't baptized and this Sunday, they all came to church together! It was a really amazing feeling when they walked in and I know that it was the Lord who prompted them to come. The more I work with people and the more I learn, I see that we as missionaries are there to do our part and then the Lord will touch their hearts and do what is needed. We are just there to do what the Lord has asked us to do. 

This week we finally got the Liahonas for this last general conference and I read the talk about "ponderizing" (https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2015/10/my-heart-pondereth-them-continually?lang=eng) and I have had the goal for several weeks to start doing this, but I never did it and:( I was having a hard time this week and I thought: the Lord has spoken unto us through his servants and if we will just to what they say, we will find the peace and happiness that we search for. So I decided to start doing it and I can say that it really helped me during this week. I know that if we do the little things and follow those that the Lord has chosen, we will be blessed. 

But that's all for this week! I hope all of the students back home have good luck with their finals and that they will survive! We will be here in the Congo doing the Lord's errand:) But I love you all so much! For a challenge go drink some cream soda for me! 
 
Love,
Elder Legerski

PS.  Also, I don't know if I said this already, but Elder Dou bought grubs a few weeks ago (like from The Lion King!) and he grilled them up and we ate them! And it was like peanut butter! But once again love you!

 

Monday, November 30, 2015

Turning the Big "21" and Giving Thanks

Hello everyone back home...how are you!?
   To start off, I want to thank everyone so much for all of the birthday wishes that you sent to me! It's crazy to think that I'm 21, but hey--that's life and before I know it, I'll be home and I'll be 22! I don't know if we will do anything too special because we are kinda limited, but I will do what I can to party a little with the time that I have!
   This week was a very good we for us here in  Brazzaville and also for us in Gunyemer!  To start off with, we had a zone meeting with President Monga and it went really well! Because I am the zone leader, I had to conduct the meeting and I was a little nervous and also a little scared, but it went really well! The spirit was really strong and we all learned and it pushed us to be more obedient and also to go out and work harder and more effectively. I learned a lot of things and it really helped me. And as this was my first zone meeting as a leader, I got to see how much time and effort goes in to planning a meeting like this and also how hard people work to make meetings like this special and effective. I will never take things like this for granted again!

Front Row:  Elder Pindi, Elder Dou, Elder Bacera, Elder Gilbert, Elder Miller.
Back Row:  Elder Crandall, Elder Totovola, Elder Legerski, Elder N’Sana, Elder Mbielola, Elder Nelson.

    We also had a really good Thanksgiving dinner with the Nelsons at their home on Thursday night. I'm so thankful for the time that they took to prepare for us and I have to say that it was really good and I enjoyed it a lot! We made our own little turkeys from apples and candy and then we ate and it was like I was back home! Turkey here is super expensive though, so we just had chicken instead but it was really delicious! But I sure did miss Uncle Troy's sweet potato casserole, that's for sure! As I was at the apartment after Thanksgiving, I sat down and really thought about all that I am thankful for and all the blessings that God has given to me in this short span of time that I have spent here on the earth. I felt like I needed to share these things because they are really important!
       I'm really thankful for running water and electricity and when they are stable cause it's not fun sleeping when its really hot!
       I'm thankful for all of the friends that I have back home who have helped me become the person I am today, and for those people who continue to support me with my decision to serve a mission and for those who are always there for me.
      I'm thankful for this gospel which has changed my life and has made me a completely different person.
      I'm thankful for my extended family and all that they do for me and for all of their support.
      I'm so thankful for this chance which I have been given to come to the Congo and to serve the children of God, for this chance that I have to abandon myself and go to the service of other people, for this chance to be an instrument in the hands of our Heavenly Father and to do His will here on the earth, and for all that I have learned and for all the progress that I have made here.
      I am so thankful for my family:  for my dad who takes care of us and leads and guides us and who loves us, for my mother who cares for us and who does all that she can so that us her children may be happy, for my Megann who sets the example for all of us children and pushes us to do our best, for Koltin who just loves so purely and who works his hardest to help everyone in the family, and for Skya who is the ball of energy in the family and who puts a spark in us all so that we get off our our butts and do something. I love my family dearly and am so happy to know that I will live with them even after this life.
       And finally, I'm so thankful for Jesus Christ who gave his life for me, who is there when no one else is and who listens when no one else wants to listen, for the fact that he that bled from every pore so that I may have eternal life. I am so thankful for him and what he has done for me. Every day that I study and go and teach, my love for him grows larger and larger.
     Thank you so much once again for all of you who wrote me! I hope you had a good week and Thanksgiving! I hope you have a good Christmas season chez vous and you all enjoy the holiday spirit!
    For homework, someone go drink a bottle of cream soda of sparkling cider for me!

Love,
Elder Legerski

Monday, November 23, 2015

Bucket Showers Make You Stronger:)

Hello everyone!  How are you doing back home!

It seems to be getting hotter and hotter here in Brazza, but I think that I'm getting used to it because I get cold at night and all I use is a fan! Unfortunately, we haven't had water since Saturday night, but we have a reserve so I have become a pro at putting water into a bucket by sucking on the end of a hose and then using gravity to keep the water flowing. It's been difficult and we have had a lot of bucket showers, but that's life here and I'm sure that it will just make me stronger! For a background about where I am, I'm in Brazzaville, which is the capital, and I'm working in the area of Bascongo, which is right next to a big market that we call "Marche Total". And we work in a ward, but we have had 2 conferences the last 2 Sundays so we haven't been able to get a real good feeling for the members and how many come. But from what we have heard, the numbers are a little down and we are really going to try and do what we can to help the members start coming back to church, because the missionaries aren't here just to teach other people who don't know about the Gospel...we are asked to build up the Church where we are. We had a really hard day on Tuesday; we spent most of the day out in the sun and man was it hot! But other than that, the week was really good!

One experience that I really liked is when we talked with a young girl named Pamela who wanted to visit with us. She is 14 and she is really interested in our message. When we talked with her for the second time, she said that after she read the brochure of the Restoration, she really wanted to meet with us and that she could feel the difference in the day from before and after she had read. It really reminded me of Alma 32:28 (https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/alma/32.28?lang=eng) where it says that if we try the word, that it will enlighten our souls. I could really see this working within her and it really strenghted my testimony in the Gospel and that these things we reach are really true. 

Also, we talking with a sister who is named Glorieuse. She was doing really well with other missionaries, but when she learned that she had to get married before she could be baptized, she quit coming to church and things have been a little hard for her. But we talked with her and told her that she needs to concentrate on the things that she can do, rather than the things that she can't do, like reading the Book of Mormon, coming to church, and keeping other commandments. Like Glorieuse, that is what we all need to do in our lives. Rather than looking at what we can't do, we need to focus on the here and now and what we can do and if we do that, then the Lord will help us with the things that we can't do alone. We need to always have the Lord with us, because if we try and stand alone then we will fall just like the Nephites who fell when they forgot the Lord. 

The reason why marriage is so difficult in our sector is this: they have to pay the first and second time, which is about 2,000,000 francs each time, with a lot of things to buy.  Then after that, you have to pay the "dot", which can be up to 3,000,000 francs which is so much here. Normally you have to do that with the mom's family, but in our sector you have to do it with the mom's family and with the dad's family, so it's really hard and it blocks baptism a lot. But we must remember that it is the Lord who has commanded us to do it and with His help, all is possible. 

But that's all for this week everyone! We are having Thanksgiving with the Nelsons this Thursday, so we are all pretty excited! I love you all and I thank all of you who wrote to me this week.  I hope you have a good week and more importantly, a good time with your family!
 
I love you all! And for a challenge tell all your friends and family why you are thankful for them in your lives!

Elder Legerski

Monday, November 16, 2015

Tout Ira Bien...(All Will Be Well)

Dear family and friends...how are you this week!

   This week was a really good week for us here, even though it was really tough! Well, I have started training with Elder Dou, who is from the Ivory Coast, and he is really amazing! I like working with him a lot! So, we are here in Brazzaville, which is the center of the mission! The Senior Missionaries are the Nelsons and they are really awesome. But they are at the mission office all of the time, so we don't see them a lot and most things are done by the assistants or the zone leaders here. I'm in a house with 5 other missionaries and I really like it. I am with Elders Dou, Lubanzila, Kabeya, Izere, and Mannase and I really like all of them! The power is pretty good, but we don't have air conditioners and have no washer, no microwave and no water heater and its really hot! But hey--that's Africa! But I really like it here.

   We are in a sector that is well, to be frank, really hard! We spent most of our days looking for amis' houses because adresses here pretty much don't exist and also, we have been contacting a lot which is really tiring because you are in the sun all day long! And to add onto that, I got sick this Thursday and spend a good part of my day in the bathroom:( As all of this has been going on, it's been really hard and at the start of the week, I was really stressed but then I decided to follow the motto "tout ira bien" which means all will be well. We decided to just be as obedient as we can and to just go out and work! And I feel like this is what we are suppossed to do.  I have really focused myself on having Christ as my foundation and having hope, a hope which leads to faith and faith which leads to action. As I have been doing that, it has really been helping me. Also, not complaining and and just knowing that the Lord has placed me here has helped, and knowing that there is something that I need to learn here and I just need to find what it is. The Lord will help us grow in hard times.

   But time is short here, so I'm sorry that my letters are short. But I keep my journal every day and one day we will have lots of time to talk about these things. I love you so much and know that I pray for you everyday!! Go and hug someone you love for me this week! I love you all and I thank you so much for all that wrote to me this week...I wish you a good week and keep on going!

Elder Legerski

Monday, November 9, 2015

I'm Moving On....To Brazzaville!!!

Hey everyone,,,how are you doing!?
   Just to let you know, I'm not in Pointe Noire anymore! I got moved over to Brazzaville in the sector of Guynimer (I think that's how you spell it!)   And it's the first time that I will ever be working with a ward, and also a stake! I'm really glad but also really nervous to be here! Also, I'm white washing (when two missionaries open a new area that hasn't had missionaries in it before, it is called white washing) with Elder Dou, who was at Pointe Noire with me and I got called to be a zone leader! (a zone leader is a missionary called to supervise the activities of group of missionaries within an area) It's a little much to take it and I'm really nervous, but I know that God qualifies those that he calls and it's not men who call us, rather it was the Lord who knew that I could do all of these things!
    But as I was called to another city, I had to say goodbye to my old branch and I was really sad, but it was good as well. They will always have a place in my heart and I will always remember the time that I spent there!! Got to take so many photos and it was a fun time!
    Also, we had a music activity and we got to sing as missionaries and it went really well for us! There were also other choirs that sang and it was really awesome! For the choir for our branch, I had 3 recent converts who were singing, with 1 ami (an investigator) and it was a really cool sight to see and I was so proud of them all!
   And to end the day, we were talking with an inactive gentleman who had a problem with smoking and we invited him to throw out all of his cigarettes and so he went and got them and then gave them to me, and as soon as I got home I threw them away! It's really cool to see that as he is starting to read and to pray, that he now really has the desire to change his life so that it is in line with God.
    But that's all for this weeks folks! I love you all so much! Thank you for all that wrote to me this week and I hope that you have a good week and that I hear from you next week! As for a challenge, go to McDonalds and get a large fry for me!

Love, 
Elder Legerski

Monday, November 2, 2015

He Will Make Us Greater Than We Could Ever Make Ourselves

    Hello everyone back home!  Thank you so very much for the emails this week; I really appreciate it! As for our week here in Congo, it was really good. It felt a little weird to be back in the sector working full time, but it also felt really good. We had a really good week which ended in a baptism on Saturday and it was a solid week.

   This week we had Josna who was baptized. She has been an ami for a year but her family didn’t want her to be a member of the church, so she had to wait over a year and a half.  But finally she was baptized and it was a really good moment for all of us. Even though it took Elder Tshibanda 3 times to get her all the way under and 2 times for the confirmation, it was all good in the end:) It really strengthened my testimony of ordinances because they are so important and so necessary for us so that we can have salvation. Even though its really stressful, its all worth it in the end.

   But this week I had a really cool experience. It was fast Sunday and it was the hottest day by far this week.  All of our appointments were falling through and when we taught, we didn’t feel the spirit and because of that, I got really frustrated and irritated. Sometimes even though you do all that you can, you don’t see any fruits of your labors. You do all that you can to help people, but still they don’t accept your message. But as I kneeled down to end my fast, I realized that I just need to do my best and do all that I can to help those around me. Maybe it's not exactly how I want it to be and it might not be perfect, it's all worth it in the end. And as I prayed, I felt all of those negative feelings  go away and they were replaced by understanding. It's amazing what we can do when we put our trust in the Lord. He will make us greater than we could ever make ourselves.

   Also, today we had to say goodbye to our beloved Elder Kabongo. We have been in the same zone for 5 transfers and the same district for 4 and he was an amazing Elder and we are all going to miss him!

Elder Kabongo, Elder Bacera, Elder Kabasele, Elder Waite, Elder Kabenga,
Elder Larson, Elder Tchibanda and Elder Legerski.


   But that’s all for this week folks! We are getting transfer letters this week, so we will see if I will be leaving Pointe Noire after a long 7 month stay! For a challenge, go eat something at CafĂ© Rio! I love you all so much!

Elder Legerski

Monday, October 26, 2015

The Joys of Teaching La Famille d'Albertine

Hello everyone...how are you!?

This week was a good one, but I think that is was the most boring week out of all the weeks that I have spent on my mission! Because of Congo's President, and the things he is doing, it has been causing some problems here. Last Saturday we had to come back to the apartment early because of shots that were fired, but they were not near us. And this last Tuesday, there was a march, so on Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday, we were shut in the apartment all day long. And as a missionary, you have nothing to do in the apartment...I almost died of boredom, but Elder Bills gave us General Conference so we were able to watch that! But all the trouble is gone now (to Mom and Grandma, we were never in any danger.  We live in a safe neighborhood and all is well now.) But thanks to all that emailed me this week; I really appreciate it! I love you all and I hope that you have a good week!


Elder Legerski, Leticia, Jean,  and Elder Museku
6-10-15
But this week we really had to focus on the amis that had baptismal dates so that they may be baptized. And mainly it was the family of Albertine. In their family, there is the mom, Albertine, and then 4 kids: 2 boys and 2 girls...Chadrack, Sarah, Jhovitha, and Price and they are 20, 15, 13, and 10 years old! This week we talked about the Plan of Salvation and it went really well! They really liked learning about where we come from and where we are going. They were lessons just full of the spirit and they really love to learn with us and read the Book of Mormon. They are really excited to go to church this coming Sunday and also be baptized on the 5th. It's a really cool experience getting to teach them. It's only the second time that I have taught a couple, but it is the first time that I have taught a whole family and I love it. Those that did missions where you taught families, you are really lucky and those that are on missions, now take advantage of that! 

During my personal study, I discovered something that was really cool. I was reading in Alma about the people at Zarahemla who were keeping the commandments and were being persecuted by those that didn't and how the Lord lifted them out of these afflictions. It was because they humbled themselves and they put their trust in the Lord and they prayed with all their might. And because of that, the Lord blessed them more than their enemies.  I really liked this lesson because they are all things that we can apply when we have hard times.  And it's the same way with us, if we will do these things, the Lord will bless us. I am so thankful for Him and the chance that I have to testify of this Gospel unto the children of men. 

But that's all for this week! I love you all so much and I hope you have a good week.  I will see you guys next week! And for a challenge, go eat some Mc Donald's french fries!!

Elder Legerski

Monday, October 19, 2015

The Simple Joys of a Missionary

Hi family and friends...how are you !?
   This week has been really good for us here in the Congo! If you are or were a missionary, you know the simple joy of going out in the sector and working your butt off all day long. Even if you didn’t do much, you are doing something and you are adding to the Lord's kingdom on the earth and that gives you a joy that many cannot describe.
    But for this week, I want to talk about the Albertine family that we met this week. I don’t remember if I talked about them last week, but I know that even if I did, they are worth a second letter. Well, we met them and we started teaching them and from the start, they were just so awesome! The whole family loves to meet with us and they are really interested in the Gospel. We taught them about the Restoration this week and the Spirit was so strong in all of the lessons! You can tell that God prepared them and that they are meant for us. And also, all 4 kids came to church this Sunday and they all loved it! The mom didn’t come but she said that she will come on the 1st, so that will be really exciting! At the last meeting with them, we talked about the Book of Mormon and we committed them to be baptized and all 5 of them accepted to be baptized on the 5th of December! I really hope that I am still here and that they will go through with this choice that they have made.

Elder Tschibanda, Soeur Alex and her brother,
Elder Legerski 7-11-15
   
   Also, during my studies I read in the book of Mosiah and I think it might have become my favorite book in the Book of Mormon! I was really touched with how King Benjamin taught his people, and how he teaches that all we need to do to have eternal life is to be obedient to all of God's commandments. And as we do that, it shows the love that we have for Him. Also, as I read of the people of King Zeniff and how they were cursed or had many burdens, it was all because of what they themselves had done.  Many times when we have hard times, it is because of the choices which we have made, which means that many of things can be avoided if we just follow the small and quiet voice who leads and guides us.
    But thank you so much to all the people that emailed me-I really appreciate it and I love you all! I hope that you have a great week! For a challenge this week, go eat a corn dog!

Love,
Elder Legerski



Monday, October 12, 2015

Between the toes sandals...I'm finally growing up!

Hello all of the family and all friends!
   This week has been super awesome for us! We were able to see a lot of amis and to meet new people and create new memories!! I don’t have a lot to say this week so I hope you will all be satisfied!! But I want to say thank you to all of the people that sent me emails this week; I am so thankful that you take the time to write me and I hope that you have a very good week!
    One thing I do want to talk about is our meeting that we had with Sabina. Sabina is the wife of one of Mama Cecile and Papa Beri's sons (yeah, just one of their 10 children!!). She has been coming to church for a few weeks now and we finally went over to see her. Now the hard part is that she doesn’t speak much French. She understands a little when we talk, but for her to speak its really hard. That is really common here and it creates quite a few problems. I don’t know if I have said this before, but when you walk down the streets here you hardly ever hear French. It's mostly linglala or munikituba, so it's quite different. But I now understand basic things! Well, we have been teaching her about the  restoration and we needed a  translator, so we used Papa Beri. It was really neat to feel the Spirit as we spoke and then Papa Beri translated and Sabina answered. No matter what language you speak or how you speak it, if you teach with and by the Spirit, then everyone will be able to know that what you are saying is true. I look forward to teaching her some more and learning some more kiycongo!!

Elder Waite, Elder Kamba, Elder Legerski, Elder Bacera,
Elder Tschibanda, Elder Kabongo, and Elder Kazemb
 
     Also, I got to go on splits this week with Elder Kazemb and we had a really good day in their sector!! I got to go out to the Mpaka apartment and stayed with Kazemb, Kabongo and Dou. We had a good time eating fou fou together and talking about things.
    But other than that, I don’t have big things to say this week! I saw bats in the market, but President Monga said we aren’t allowed to eat them or else I would have bought one and had Elder Dou cook it up for me! And also, I bought sandals that go in-between my toes, Mom! I'm finally growing up!
    But that’s all for this week. I love you all and for a challenge this week, go and eat a blizzard from Dairy Queen!!

Love,
Elder Legerski

Monday, October 5, 2015

Grandpa Legerski and the GIGANTIC spider

Hey family and friends how are you doing!?
   This week was a really good week for us here in the Congo at Aeroport! I can't believe I'm still here... I feel like a grandpa!! But I know that God wants me to be here and it means that I have work to do.  I just wanted to say thank you to all of the people who wrote me and I hope that you all have a great week this coming week! I love you all!!
    The best part of this week was the baptism of Jules! He has just been waiting to turn 18 so he could be baptized and his birthday was last Sunday, so finally the date of his baptism came! It was a really good service! He was there really early and he was talking to us about how he was really nervous, but all went well!! He chose me to baptize him and it went really well and this time it only took me one time! But he was really calm and you could really feel the spirit. I have to say that when you perform ordinances, you are so tired after wards! The body just can't keep up with spiritual things! The past 2 Saturdays I have fallen asleep in English class!! Afterwards,  Jules bore his testimony about how he has a kind of broken family life, but when he met us and he came to the church, he began to feel a joy and the members of the church rallied about him. I swear he is at the church every day! The second councilor who gave the welcoming word said he was surprised to see Jules being baptized, because he thought that he was a member already because he is always at the church...you really can see how he loves the church! Now he really wants to start working with us so that will be really awesome! It's really cool to see how the spirit has changed him and I can't wait to see the person he becomes in the church.

Elder Legerski, Jean, Cecile (who were baptized last month),
Elder Tshibanda
    Also, we have some new people that we are teaching; one is Beljuda, who is the niece of our branch president and she is really cool! She is only 12 years old, but she can't read. But she really loves meeting with us and when she does, she is always with her cousin, who is Claude, and she helps us out. But every time that we leave her homework in the Book of Mormon, she reads it with Claude and she is able to explain to us very well what she learned!
    Also, we have been teaching Judelle for awhile, but we have started teaching her husband as well, because they are not married and we want them to work together. And yesterday, we talked about the restoration and it was really awesome. And as we ended the lesson, he said that he was coming to church, which was the commitment we were going to give him. And he also said that during the week, he thinks a lot about our meetings and even before we came he was waiting for us.  He was really excited and he didn’t know what it was. But I realized that it’s the light of Christ acting in him and because he is using it wisely, it is growing in him and he is recognizing it.
    And to end this week, I had the chance to go on splits with Elder Bacera and it went really well and I learned a lot of things! In a month and a half, half of our entire mission will have less than 4 months left to serve, so it looks like I'll never serve with someone older than me! But its good to see the mission grow.

Elder Waite, Elder Kamba, Elder Legerski,
Elder Bacera, Elder Tschibanda, Elder Kabongo, Elder Kazemb
  To end the letter, Elder Tshibanda and I were teaching and I was just thinking how the houses here aren’t that bad and I could live here when a GIGANTIC spider, probably 3 inches in diameter, crawled out from under the bed. Elder Tshibanda and I froze and watched it  crawl behind our ami and then onto the foot of her sister and they didn’t even notice. Yeah, I about pooped my pants and I was really glad to leave that house. 
Elder Waite, Elder Legerski, and Elder Kabongo at the beach a few weeks ago.
 
    But once again, I love you all and I can't wait to hear from you next week! For a challenge, go eat a Subway sandwich!

Love,
Elder Legerski!

Monday, September 28, 2015

It's a Beautiful Day for a Baptism

Dear family and friends...how are you doing!?
   This week was a really good week for us here in Pointe Noire because it was a baptism week and it was even more special because it was the baptism week of Mama Cecile and Papa Beri!!! But before I talk about that, I want to say thank you to all of the people who wrote to me...I really appreciate it a lot! I wish you all a great week and I hope that it all goes well!
   It's starting to heat up here and the rain will be starting soon, so it looks like we will be having a lot of fun in the sector,but that is life, I guess!!  But other than that, life is going great and the work is continuing! We have another batch of new missionaries coming in and we have 9 new missionaries! And the amazing thing is that my whole entire zone is training! And in our mission, we have 16 teams who are training and 13 who are not and at the end of this transfer, we will get 11 Americans! So it looks like we will be very busy, but it is good because that means that the mission is growing!!
   But as I was saying, it was the baptismal week for Papa Beri and Mama Cecile! This week we talked with them about the temple and the preistood! They were two super amazing lessons! When we talked about the temple, they were so excited and they had so many questions about it and they really want to go! And they said that they will start preparing so that they can go to the temple in one year, which is really awesome! And also, we talked about the priesthood and how it blesses families and it is why this church is the only true church of Jesus Christ.  Papa Beri was really excited and he really loved it and after he was ordained a priest after sacrament meeting, he came up to me and said, "I got it!" It was a really awesome moment and so amazing to see how they have progressed. On the day of their baptism, there were so many people in the room! We had to bring in extra chairs and they had so many kids there! It was really awesome to see the whole branch and family there to support them.  Mama Cecile chose Elder Tshibanda to baptize her and Papa Beri chose me:)   Mama Cecile's baptism went off without a hitch, but for me it was a little hard! He is 75 years old and he is a pretty good sized man and the font that we have isn’t the biggest so it took me 2 tries to get him all the way under, but I finally got it! It was so cool to see them all dressed in white and to be all dressed in white with them. It is a moment that I will never forget! And after the baptism, they both bore super strong testimonies and everyone just loved them and it was an amazing moment and so special to be a part of!
   But that’s all for this week, folks! Now it's on to the next adventure and to the next family to find! But once again, thank you so much for all of your emails and I will see you next week! For a challenge, go eat a baconator and then some rocky road ice cream!

Love,
Elder Legerski

Monday, September 21, 2015

Hitting My Year Mark!!!

Hey everyone how are you doing!?
   Sorry I didn’t send you an email last week. I promise it wasn’t a problem with anything bad! Just that the email service of the Church had some problems and I wasn’t able to send an email! But I just wanted to thank you all for the outpouring of messages that you sent to me this week! I loved seeing how you all were and how you are all doing! Thank you to all that wrote to me...I just love opening up my email and seeing all the responses! But these past 2 weeks have been super, super good and also really hard as well! That is just the life of the mission! But as usual,as I start to write my mind becomes blank!

   But to start out with,  I'll talk a little bit about Mama Cecile and Papa Beri! They are doing just awesome!!!! We are over at their house nearly every single day and they just love talking and meeting with us! They are doing so well! This week we watched the film of the restoration of the Church (https://www.lds.org/media-library/video/2008-06-01-the-restoration?lang=eng) with them during Family Home Evening and after we got done, they talked about how they all loved it. Papa Beri is the best because he talked about how this church is the only true church and because of Joseph Smith's humble prayer and answer, we do have the fullness of the gospel here on the earth! But all is well with them and they will be getting baptized this Saturday, so it’s a date that we have all been looking forward to and it will be such a great addition to our branch and to the church!

   At another meeting we had this week, we were talking with an investagator and he told us that the Book of Mormon wasn’t true and that all that we were doing was false and that we do not know Jesus Christ. And then his friend, who was with us, told us that we were hypocrites and that we needed to stop what we were doing. All this was really hard to take being missionaries of this church. But as I heard these things, I wasn’t angry or upset, I was actually sad. Because I know that these things are true for myself and I wish that they would partake of the goodness that the Gospel gives to us and how it blesses us. But sadly, there are people who want nothing to do with you and want to tear down all that you do. But this is where I think charity comes in, because we just need to have a pure love for all people and if we do have this love, then it will allow us to become more like Christ. It is not something that is easily obtained, but I know that it is worth it! Oh, and they bought us beignets after the lesson so there were no hard feelings!

   Also, we were contacting, for like only the 3rd time in my mission the other week! Yeah, people contact us here. But as we knocked on a gate, the person answered and we asked if we could share a message about Jesus with him and he said no, that they people that lived there weren’t for God and that we were liars and then slammed the gate in our face. It was not fun, that’s for sure, but I was glad to stand as a witness for Him. He that gave all for us so that we may have the chance to be with our Father once more. I just hope that I can continue to be worthy of His name until the day that I die so that I may receive a fullness of joy.

   But it's been one year folks! It's really weird to think that half of my mission has passed! I still feel so new and I feel like I have so little time left! But I burned a shirt and that was about all that I did!

   That's the end of my email for today folks! For homework go eat or make a meal that is special to your family! I love you all so much and ill see you next week!

Love, Elder Legerski!!!!

P.S. I feel like French is my native language now. I haven’t spoke English with my companion in over 9 months. I speak, read, think and dream in French. It's really weird.

 

Monday, September 7, 2015

I'm The Old Man in the Mission

Hi family and friends ...how are you!?

   This week was a really amazing week for us here in Pointe Noire! Lots of things going on and lots of excitement!  Just want to say thank you to all the people who took time to write me this week, as usual, I really appreciate it and always love seeing how your lives are going! It's weird to be getting near to my year mark. It seems like I am still really new here! But that's not the case. Most of the  missionaries that I knew from the beginning are already at home and I'm starting to become an old guy in the mission! But this week started off really well. Paco, who was our DMB
(or forwards ward mission leader) left for his mission in the Ivory Coast! It's crazy cause they
had a little party for him at the branch and they asked the missionaries to come and talk,
so of course we did! But as we were sitting there, Elder Bacera leaned over and said "you
know, there isn't one single person here who was born into the church. They are all converts
and all were baptized." That really struck me and its really amazing to be here. The only
people born into the church here are the littlest of the kids and it makes me remember how
awesome it is to be a missionary here in the best mission in the world!

   But we were able to talk with Mama Celile and her husband this week. They are really 
awesome. They have been amis together for 5 years and couldn't be baptized because of
certain things, but we talked with the President and we got the approval for their baptism
for the 26th of September! When we went over to see them, they were so happy and all of
their kids, who are already members, are so happy for them! We taught them about the Restoration and they said that they know the Book of Mormon is true and that Joseph Smith is a prophet! It was a really spiritual lesson and I'm so glad to be a part of their progression in the Gospel! Mama Celile was really amazing; she didn't go to school, so she couldn't read or write and when she started the lessons, she didn't speak French. But through the Church and her own efforts, she can now speak French and also read French, so she is able to read le Livre de Mormon (Book of Mormon)! Such an example of faith and determination.

   Also, I wanted to talk about the importance of a personal testimony. We were talking with
an ami when it really hit me. Each person in this church does the things they do, not
because of parents or other things, but because of a personal testimony. That is why the
Church is so strong. This huge organization is built on the blocks of individuals who know
these things are true, so we live in accordance with the light that we have received. And it's
something that nobody can take away from us because it is part of our personal experience
with God.

    I just want to say how grateful I am for the chance to serve this mission and for learning how to help others and seeing this Gospel change their lives and just becoming an instrument in the hands of the Lord so that I may be able to do his will. I know these things are true and because of that I wish to share it with all of the world. 

    But that's all for this week folks! I wish you all a good week and for all those college students,
keep on going forward...you can do it! I love you all so much and I look forward to hearing from
you next week! For a challenge, talk to someone random in the lunch room this week!

Love,
Elder Legerski

Monday, August 31, 2015

Officially a Missionary:)

Hi everyone...how are you doing!?
   This is Elder Legerski coming at you from the Congo once more! This week has been a really
good one for us! But it was plagued by sickness this Saturday! To be brief,  I was pretty much glued to the toilet all day:(  And for my father, Gary, and former Bishop, I officially became a real missionary after our apartment prayer. So, it looks like there is nothing left for me to do:) But training with Elder Tshibanda has been going super well! He already knows a lot of what we need to teach and we are just working on how we need to teach it and focusing on the needs of our amis.

   This week we were able to meet with 2 guys whose names are Ngama and Djimi and they were some really awesome meetings! With Ngama, he really talked about how he wanted to know how he can show his faith in Jesus, so we talked about how in order to do that, we need to follow his example and also, we need to keep his commandments. So after talking with him, we fixed a baptismal date for the 3rd of October! Also,  we saw Djimi. He was a guy that stopped us one day and said that he really wanted to know how he could become a member of the Church and asked if he could find out more. Because of our delay in Brazza and a bunch of other things, we were able to finally meet with him this week, and as we talked with him, he really expressed a desire to change his life and to follow Christ and he really wants to become a person who prays often and someone who lives a good life. It was a really powerful lesson and I know that the Spirit was there. He was really serious about all this and he had even  read in the Book of Mormon the night before and this was just our first meeting with him! Just goes to show that the Lord is preparing people all around us and we just need to be in the right place at the right time to give them what they need. Something I really like about Africa is that all of the people come up to us and ask US questions about the church, so its like they come and contact us! It's really amazing to be a missionary here at this time!

    But that's about all for this week folks! I would like to express my gratitude for all of the people who wrote me this week, and also with all of you college students, good luck on this first week of studies! Go out there and get it done!  For homework, I want each of you to try and do a random act of kindness for someone! Also, if you ever get mad about a situation, look at it and ask yourself  "now, how can I learn from this?"
 
But thanks so much all of you...I love you so much!
Elder Legerski

Monday, August 24, 2015

An Airport With No Gas???

Hello everyone how are you!?
  
   I am so happy to hear from all of you this week and I just want to thank everyone for all of the emails that you sent me! I love seeing all the emails when I come to cyber on Monday and it just makes me smile!

   Well this week was quite an interesting one! To start, we were going to Brazzaville as planned but as the week went on, it was something quite more than that! To start, Tuesday morning we got up early as usual and we got ready and we went to the airport. Elder Bacera took with him his infamous apple bag that he found in his apartment. We had someone who wanted to bribe us in the airport, but we just gave him a brochure so there was no problem with that! We got all of our bags checked and we were off to Brazzaville!

   Right as we landed I saw my teacher, Ngonda, who taught me for 3 days in the MTC before he came back here to work for the mission office! It was really different, because now I can speak French and I was able to communicate with him! But he is doing really well! Then we went to the mission office and we were able to meet the Nelsons and all of the other people and see the stake center and meet a lot of new missionaries, which was really nice...oh, and it was the first time that I had ever met sister missionaries in the mission since they are only at Brazzaville! But we all went in and we talked about what we need to do and what we shouldn’t do as trainers so that we can become good trainers. Then we ate and went back to the assistants apartment which is super big and super nice! Because they were there, I got to see Elder West again, as well as Elder Kabenga and Elder Rokotodrabaeharison! We had a lot of fun together and the next morning they headed off to the airport to go home! It was really nice seeing them all one last time.

   Then we went to the mission office and waited for the new missionaries! Their plane was late, but eventually we met with them and I got to meet my new companion, Elder Tshibanda number two! He is from Lumbumbashi and he is the first African companion that I have had who was born into the church and he is 18 years old which is really rare! But he is tall and goofy, just like me, so we should get along just fine! But after that, we went to the Monga's house and ate and it was so good! Sister Monga made Saka Saka for us and I loved it! Then that was the end of the day for us.

   The next day we had training for the new missionaries and we booked it to the airport to catch our flight. But the airport was out of gas, so we were stuck in Brazzaville! So we went back to the assistant's apartment for the day. The next day there was still no gas' so we went to sector with Elder Nzema and contacted for 5 hours and taught at the end of the day...it was a really long and hard day, but it was good. The next day, Saturday, we didn’t know anything, so we went and did service in shorts and dress shoes and man did we look good! But after we were there for about 10 minutes, we got a call so we went and got our stuff and waited at the airport. We were there from 10 am to 5 pm and we just sat there and waited the whole time,,,we got really bored. But we finally got a flight and got back to Pointe Noire at 8 at night. It was a really long week and I'm really glad to be back home!

   But that’s about all for this week; I hope I'll have some better news this week! I love you all and thank you all so much!

Love,
Elder Legerski

Monday, August 17, 2015

A Day of Big News

Hello everyone back home...how are you!?

   I was quite surprised to see all of the news when I opened up my email but it was all so exciting! I would like to say congrats to my father for being called as the new Bishop of the Desert View ward! I love you so much and I am so proud of you! I know that you were called by revelation and I know that you will do an amazing job! I have seen 2 branch presidents called here on my mission and one district presidency, and I know that each one of them have been called by God and each was chosen to lead his people at this time!

   And while I'm at it, I might as well add in my big news! I have been called as a trainer and also as the new District Leader! So tomorrow, I will be going to Brazzaville to learn how to train and I will also be meeting my new companion straight from the MTC! And on top of that, I will be the District Leader for our district! All these things are really new and exciting and even though I'm still one of the youngest missionaries in the mission, I know that with the help of the Lord I will be able to do what He has called me to do and I pray that I may be able to give my best effort!

   This week has been a really good one and also a little sad one. Jules was supposed to be baptized, but since he is a minor, we need to have the parent's consent and his father was not okay with it, so he couldn’t be baptized.  This really stinks, but we have set up a meeting so that we can go meet with his father so that we can talk with him and explain our church and we hope he will let his son be baptized! It's often like that here because so many bad things and rumors are spread about the Church here and I think all over the world. Many things about us are not understood and many things that are said are not true. As one of the apostles said, its not easy being a Latter Day Saint! I really like this statement, but I also think about all of the blessings which come from being a Latter Day Saint and I can say that I'm proud to be a member of this church and to be a messenger who is a representative of this church and of Jesus Christ, who has been called to share this restored gospel with all of the world.

   But recently, we have been teaching a woman named Judel and she lives in the same parcel as Jean and his wife & this week we taught her about the Word of Wisdom(https://www.lds.org/topics/word-of-wisdom?lang=eng) and it was really easy because she does not take any of the things which are not allowed! It was a really cool experience and I think it really shows how there are people who are being prepared even if we do not realize it!

   Also, this Sunday we had a really good sacrament meeting...why, you may ask? Well Jean blessed the sacrament for the first time! He was really nervous and you could tell but he read the prayer like a champ and even though it was his first time, it only took him one try! It's awesome to see how much he has grown in these last few months! Also, right after that, he was called as the secratery in the Sunday School residency and he also gave his first talk! He did really well and I was so proud of him! Also Alex, another of my recent converts, gave a talk and even though she was terrified, she got up and she did a really great job in front of everyone!

   But that’s all for this week folks! I want to thank all of the people that wrote me I really appreciate it! I would like to send my love out to all who read my emails! I love being here and I love the mission and there is no other place that I would want to be at this moment! I love you all so much! For homework, I want you all to thank someone who has made a positive impact on your life!

Love,
Elder Legerski

Monday, August 10, 2015

She Doesn't Cry When She Sees Me!!

   Hey everyone back home...how are you!? This week has been a really good one for us here in Pointe Noire and I'm looking forward to this next week! I just want to say thank you to all of the people who sent me emails this week...I really look forward to them and each time I read an email that someone sent me, I just have the biggest smile on my face because I love reading about your lives and what you are doing!

   But this week was a really good week for us here in Pointe Noire; I'm gonna talk a little about Jules. He is a kid that we met 4 weeks ago and ever since we met him, this kid is always at the church! He is really awesome and he really likes meeting with us! We have been working with him many times this week and he will be baptized this Friday (because of the nation holiday that will be held on Saturday)! When we talked to him about it, I was really amazed by how well he understands and how strong his testimony is. He already assists seminary and I think even mission prep and it amazing how much he already knows! We are really excited for his baptism this Friday!

   Also, we talked to Justavain. She has got to be my favorite ami by far, just seeing the change that she has undergone since we started the lessons with her is so big and now she loves talking with us! Even her youngest daughter, Stephanie, who used to always cry when I came over because I'm white…(yeah that happens a lot:)…. now runs up to us at church and when we come,  will say "hi" to us. But we talked with her about the Word of Wisdom and the law of chastity and she had some doubts but as I bore my testimony on these things, I got a really powerful feeling and I knew that the spirit was with us and that he was testifying of truth. It was a really great moment and was made even greater when she agreed to keep these 2 commandments so that she may be baptized.

   We also had a zone conference this Friday, so we got to see President Monga and he was able to teach us a little bit. And most of what he talked about was studying and it was really good for me. He talked about how we can take our study to the next level and how we can learn more and progress faster as missionaries. I really liked this because I feel like the mission has really helped me learn how to study and I feel like this skill will really benefit me when I come back home and I go to college!

   But that’s all for this week folks! I will see you all in one week! And for homework you can all go smile at one random person and spread a little sunshine!

Love
Elder Legerski!

Monday, August 3, 2015

A Day in the Life

   Hey everyone at home...how are you! Sorry for my spelling in advance today; I'm using a French keyboard and it's a little hard to type on! But things will work out just fine:)
 
    Before I start I just wanna thank everyone who wrote me this week. I really enjoyed all of your emails! Man was this week a good one!  I don't know if I forgot to mention this but I am now working with Elder Museku and he is from the DRC and only has 2 transfers left!

   Man was this week a busy week: to start with they re-did our branch presidency so we have all
new people! Our new branch President is Alain and he is a return missionary and he will be really
awesome for us! And the new First Counselor is also a return missionary so we are really excited
to start working together!

   But this week was a really busy one for us here in Pointe Noire and I thought that for this
week, I'll give you a taste of what missionary work is like here in the Congo.  First off, we get up
at 5:30am and pray together. Then we work out for a little bit and sometimes when I really don't feel like working out,  I read or listen to some hymns or play the piano a bit.  Then we cook and shower and get ready for the day.  At 7am we start personal study (where we study scriptures by ourselves) and then at 8am we do comp study (where we study with our companion) and we call people and plan our day out.  At 9am we study French or English until 10am and at 10am we cook lunch.  Near 10:45am we get ready to go and leave for the sector.  From 11am to 7 at night, we are teaching people all day long and it's a little tiring! Then we come back at 7pm and plan for the next day until 7:30pm.  Then we cook dinner and finally we go to bed at 9:30pm, so we are always busy and always tired!
  
   But that's my email for this week...I'm sorry it's a little short. 

I love you all so much!
Elder Legerski

Monday, July 27, 2015

Missionary Perks

   Hello everyone back home...how are you!? The weather here is starting to warm up a little and I'm not liking it one bit! This week has been a really good one for us here in Pointe Noire! It was capped off with a baptism of Jean and his wife Leticia! I'll talk about that a little later, but it was just amazing! With how hard it is to be married here, with the "dot" (the bride price a groom pays to the bride's family...it usually takes several years to earn enough to pay it) and all, it was sooo lucky that we got to baptize this family! I would just like to thank all of the people who sent me an email this week I really appreciated it! I hope that you all had a good week and that this coming week will be good for all of you!

    But I have quite a good story to tell you guys! I forgot about it for the last 2 weeks but I thought that you would really enjoy it! As we came back from district meeting two weeks ago we went to catch the bus at Foncheche, which is a giant marche, (and it's really gross) but there went to catch the bus. And when we got there, there were no buses so we had to wait. After about 20 minutes of waiting a bus came. And it was all out war to get in! People were pushing and shoving and it was not was I was used to! And then everyone had got in, my companion was way in the back, and I was the only person who hadn’t taken a place! I didn’t want to be mean! But the guy who directs the buses, and everyone else in the bus, started yelling at one lady who had taken my spot and all I understood was "pastor" (because everyone was yelling in the local language: "key congo") but eventually she got out and I was able to get in the bus with my companion and head off to the sector! One good thing about being a missionary here is that you get a lot of perks! 

   But as I said, Jean and Leticia got baptized this week and it was amazing! But it was also really hectic. We informed everyone when it was, but when we got there Saturday morning no one was there. And we had to have one of the people from the branch presidency there to preside or we couldn’t have the baptism. So we were frantically calling everyone and nobody was able to come and we had to consider cancelling the baptism and doing it the following week, which was not what I wanted to do! But then we looked at the red handbook and we saw that if it is a convert baptism, then the zone leader can preside and luckily our zone leader was there so he was able to preside for us! And we had a really good baptismal service. Elder Bills baptized them both and after he did each of them sat there in the font and I don’t know if they were soaking in the moment or praying or what, but each waited about 5 minutes but we all just sat there with them. They seemed so happy and they both bore their testimonies after and it was just such an amazing and spiritual moment! It's times like this that I love in missionary work.

   The Friday before the baptism we taught this same family about the temple and how our families can be forever if we go to the temple and are sealed together with the priesthood for time and eternity. It got me thinking of the day that I went through the temple with my family and how lucky I am to have been able to experience that. I'm so thankful for the temple and for the ordinances that we can do. And I can't wait to go there with my wife so we can be sealed together for time and all eternity!

   But that’s all for this week guys! Once again thank you so much for all of you who sent me emails and I hope that I will hear from you all next week! For a challenge, I want each family to play an entire game of monopoly together!

Love
Elder Legerski

Monday, July 20, 2015

I Will Go, I Will Do

Ah, hello everyone in America!

  How are you!? Well this past week has been an amazing on! As for me, I am still staying here in this sector and I will be getting a new companion... Elder Museku and I should be going to the airport to pick him up any second now! But unfortunately, this means that Elder Larson and I are now separated. The Lord has called him to Gabon where he will go and do the Lord's will. It's very sad and we really wanted to go together, but as Sister Monga told me, we need to be apart to grow which is very true so we told each other goodbye and that we will see each other in a year!

The Zone as of the last transfer...
Elder Tchibanda, Elder Kabenga, Elder Bacera, Elder Waite, Elder Kabongo, Elder Legerski, Elder Larson, and 
Elder Kabasele

The Bills (our new Senior Couple:)

   This won't be a super long letter but I'll do my best with the time that I have. First off, I want to talk about an ami, Justavain. We started with her the first day with Elder Tshibanda and at first, it was really hard with her and she didn't talk much and didn't show much interest in the lessons. Her father and brother are members and they have been doing a good job encouraging her, but it just wasn't working. We didn't see her last week because we were so busy but she did come to church because of her family. And when we went to teach her this week with her brother, she was soooo different! She was smiling and laughing and she had read the Book of Mormon and came with questions for us and it has just been so amazing! It just shows how important church is for us all! But she said she will be baptized so we are looking forward to it at the end of this transfer! Also in our sector, we have Jean and his wife...we had to push back their baptism date because of the district conference, but they will be getting baptized this Saturday which will be such an amazing moment for this branch! 

   As I mentioned, we just formed the district and it was so amazing...there was so many people there for the meeting and we had 19 amis who came! It was such a privilege to get to see the creation of this district and it just shows how God's work is progressing on this earth. 

    As my old companion leaves and goes back to his home, I would just like to talk about the lesson that he taught me. As we went to the amis houses, they were always so happy to see him and they always talked to him. And I as I watched and observed, I saw that he just truly loved the people! Just with all of his heart. And as I saw this, I tried to do it myself because love is so important for us as missionaries. And I have a really hard time showing people that I love them. It's just how I am. But I want everyone back home to know that even though you may not know it, I love you all so much! I just can't express how much! But I know that as we have this love and we just go through our lives, loving that life will be a lot better for us and we will be so much happier. 

    But that's the end for this week everyone! Just wanted to say happy birthday to Megan and Rylee ( Bunny)! I hope you didn't have too much fun! Also to Leanna...I got all of the pictures and I danced with joy when I saw them! Thank you so much to everyone who sent me emails; I love you all! Also a special shout out to the family...thank you for all that you do for me...I can't wait to see you!
For homework go hug every person of your family and tell them I love you!

Love,
Elder Legerski
Mu zola beno

Monday, July 13, 2015

He Knows Your Heart

Hello everyone...how are you doing!?

   Everything is going really well here in the Congo! It's a little hot as usual but I'm loving it all the same! It sounds like you all got quite a bit of rain.  I have not lived through the rainy season yet, but hopefully I will get to experience one quite soon! I would like to say thank you to all of the people who emailed me; I can't tell you how much it means to me when I open up my email and I get to see all the people who emailed me!

   But as far as this week it went really well! We have a lot of solid amis who are doing very very well! Alex was just baptized this last week and it was a really good service that we were able to have! She was really excited and her Mom and Grandma were even able to come to the baptismal service! Also, we were able to talk with Jean and his wife and we had a really good rendez-vous.  Here in Pointe Noire the church is really badly understood and many think that people are sacrificed and were are a church of magicians; as we all know none of that is true! But Jean had a friend from a former church come and talk to him and say all of these bad things about the church and Jean told us how he told his friend that this church does not do those things and that this is the true church. He told us how when he talks with us and when he comes to church, he feels like he is at home and that he is really on the path that God wants him to be upon.

  All of our other amis are doing really well also! Our amis are kinda going down because we have been baptizing so we are on the search for people that God has prepared for us!

   But I thought I would share a little story today. It is a story that Beri Mon Ami shared in his talk. He talked about a young boy and how he used to pray with his parents every night. But when the boy was five years old, both of his parents died. But he still knew that he needed to pray everyday. As he went to school every day, he kneeled down in the same spot and he prayed to God, but when he spoke he said the alphabet.  He started with a b c d and said it all until z and then he got up and went to school. When he would come back from school, he would kneel down in the same spot and he would say the alphabet again. A man noticed this and one day he walked to the boy and asked him why he said the alphabet. The boy replied that his parents had died and they hadn't had the chance to teach him how to pray, so he kneeled down and said the alphabet. But he said that God will take these letters and he will make words and he will put these words into sentences because I know that He knows the will of my heart and what I feel and what I want to say to Him.  I really like this because it shows how we need to just pray with our heart and God will always understand
 
   Lately it's been a little tough for me. Sometimes the mission is a little tough and you gotta grind it out, but I found that as I took my time in personal prayer morning and night, that my days started to get better and I started to be happier. As I focused on my feelings and the people that I love, I find that I spend a long time on my knees.  But I'm not praying, I'm just talking with my Father who is in heaven.

   But that's all for this week folks! I hope you all have a wonderful week and I look forward to seeing you all next week! We will be getting out transfer letters this week so we will see how that goes, if I will go or if I will stay! I know I will be getting a new companion though!

   Someone go eat a grilled chicken burrito from Taco Johns for me!

Love,
Elder Legerski

Monday, July 6, 2015

Au Revoir to the Bailys...Bonjour to the Bills!

Dear friends and family,
 
   How are you all doing!? I'm doing really good here in the Congo! It's starting to get a little warm again, hot enough so that I sweat when I am in the sector and I'm not sure if I like it! But the work here is really going well!

   This week I got the chance to see the assistants.  That was really awesome because my trainer,Elder West, is one of the AP's so I got to go out and work with him and it was a really awesome experience! It's really cool how much we change in just a short time here on the mission! He is a great missionary but I see that he has grown even so much more and it's awesome to see! We had a lot of time to talk about the mission and the work and it was all really good!

   Also, this week the Bailys are leaving...at 9 tonight in fact! They have a blog but I don’t know the name but I'm sure that if you looked that you could find it and they have all of their info from the last 18 months here! But the Bills are here now and they are really awesome! Elder Bills served in France and he speaks super good French! I'm really excited to be neighbors with them for the next little bit! And also, we got the water problem fixed and we now have water! It makes me sure miss the US and how the water or power never goes out!

   This week was a really good one with the amis. Alex, who is going to be baptized, is doing really well. For the first few weeks that I was here, she did not understand the book of Mormon at all! But this last Sunday, we went and visited her she told us a lot of the story of Nephi and his brothers when they went back to Jerusalem and it was really amazing! It's just proof of how, if we want to understand and we let God help us, that He can do miracles! Also, Jean and his wife are doing really well and the baptism on the 18th is looking very promising!

   This week was also one filled with lots of baptisms! This weekend between the 4 sets of teams we had 7 baptisms! And I just want to give a shout out to my good buddy Elder Larson who just had his first baptism and he was even the Jean Baptist! It was such a cool moment seeing all of the people enter into the water. I was asked to give a talk on the restoration and as I was thinking about that, I was thinking about how I was seeing this power that was restored through Joseph Smith being used. It was super surreal and it was just an awesome spiritual moment.

   But that’s all for this week folks! To my mom and dad, sorry about the lack of photos...the computers aren’t really trustworthy here and an Elder in the past put his card in and the computer erased everything so I'm just being a little cautious! Someone go eat a stuffed burger for me! I tried to make hamburgers for the 4th but I totally failed! I love you all so much and I thank all who emailed me! Have a wonderful week filled with the spirit!

Love,
Elder Legerski

Monday, June 29, 2015

Bucket Showers and The Blessings of Sacrifice

Hello everyone!

   This is Elder Legerski coming at you from Pointe Noir.  It's been really cold lately but it just reminds me of home so that's good! This week has been a super good one! We got a new couple so we are very thankful for that! Now we have the Bills who will replace the Baileys so we are all very happy! They are really nice and I know that they are going to take really good care of us! They have been out on the mission as long as I have so I think we are going to have a good time together!

   Also our water pump is broken so we haven't had any water! But no worries...we have buckets! You're not really in Africa unless you have to take a few bucket showers and wash your clothes in a bucket.

   This week has been a really good one with the amis! We have Jean and his family who are progressing really well. They weren't able to come to church because they circumcised their son who is like 6 years old...ouch! So we had so move back their baptism date to the 18th of July, which is a bummer, but it is more important that they are ready.

   Also we have been working with Alex and she has been doing really well! We have been meeting with her for a long time, and she will be baptized the 11th! We are really happy because when we last met with her, she said that she really likes coming to church because she knows the people there now and she can see her friends.  It's really awesome when the members really get with people who are new in the church because it makes the missionaries' jobs so much easier because they are encouraged by their friends to do the right things.

   This week in church we had a lot of really good lessons! When we were in the amis class, we talked about sacrifice and how we need to learn how to sacrifice to become like God and as we sacrifice things for the will of God, it prepares us to live with him again one day. And it hit me as I was sitting there that God sacrificed so much for us. One, He gave us His only son Jesus Christ. He also gave us so many things, like the world and all the things that we have. He created and did all these things so that we could be happy in this life.  Even if we do not do His will, He still loves us and gives us blessings.
 
   Also, in Elder's quorum, we talked about President Eyring's talk from general conference.
And as we did that I realized that when we know that we act in accordance with the will of God, we will be happy. Because we know that He is the most important person in the world; God lead us and we followed him. It's not always the most fun thing in the world, but we will have a joy inside us after we do it.

   I know that the things that we as missionaries do are what God wants us to go. And that's why missionaries are always so happy, because we share the good tidings with everyone! I thank everyone who wrote me this week...I really appreciate it! I hope everyone has a good week and I will write you guys in a week! Someone go have some chicken nuggets for me!

Love,
Elder Legerski