Monday, January 26, 2015

Holy Cow it's Hot!!

Hello everyone!
How are you doing!? Everything is going really well here in Africa and I'm loving it as always! The big thing for this week has been the heat! January and February are the hottest months of the year so its been killer hot out in the sector! I'm just always used to being soaked through with sweat from head to toe now.
This week has been a really normal one and I don't have lots of time so its going to be a shorter letter! The big thing from this week was we had the APs to the President come and visit us!! The one who stayed with us was named Elder Bybee and he was such an awesome guy! He has only been out for 10 months but his French is already so goood! He went on splits with us and it was awesome to see how he worked and I learned a lot!

The APs and the Bonaberi Elders

Other than that it was a really normal week here in the Bonaberi branch! I got the package that my mom sent and it was amazing! I have already eaten all of the elk jerkey and it was fantastic!! And everyone loved their presents that my mom made...we just don't know where to put them!! Thank you so much Mom for everything!
Oh and Happy Birthday to my little sister Skya; she is the big 14! Crazy to think that when I come back she will be able to drive!! And speaking of that, 4 years ago I crashed my mom's bug. I've come a long ways since then.
Once again, sorry it was so short. I hope all is well back home. I love you all! Someone go eat some cheese for me! Cheese here is super expensive so we don't get it much!

Elder Legerski

Monday, January 19, 2015

4 months already?!

Hello everyone!
How are you!? I'm doing really good here in Africa and like always, the sun is shining and it’s a new day for us to become even better people.

To start off, I would just like to thank my Mom and my family for the wonderful Christmas package that I finally received! I got it on Thursday afternoon and I was not home at the time but I could not wait to open it! Finally, after the whole apartment of Elders got home, we finally sat down to open it and it was so much fun! Christmas is great but when you are on a mission, it's even better. And then when you get a package a month later, it makes it just that much better!! I wanted to thank my family so much for the gifts that I received. I also wanted to share some funny stories from our opening of it. The best was when I opened the cookie butter. As soon as I opened it up I recognized what it was and started jumping up and down screaming "cookie butter!!!" like a little 4 year old child. Now Elder Larson knows what it is and how delicious it is, so of course he joined in on the excitement. Now Elder West and Rakato did not know what it was, so of course we shared the goodness with them. Also, I would like to thank Leanna for the package that I recived from her. We are all Star Wars nerds in our apartment so let's say we all loved them so much!! And I look forward to wearing them in the sector.
Elder Legerski (aka Luke Skywalker)

Overall, this past week was a very busy and challenging one. We have so many amis and no good time to go and see them all! Often times it is very hard to fit our studies in and meet with everyone in a week. Many times when people say "oh, when will you come meet with me!?" We say "umm... well we can on Thursday because our Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday are already full. Two days stood out in particular to me this week. The first day was the 16th and we had to begin the day at 11. The first rendez-vous was good but then we started walking. Many times we have anywhere from a 30 minute to 50 minute walk in between meetings with people so it was very hard. During our third rendez-vous of the day I was having a very hard time. I was struggling to speak and we had been walking a lot and I was really hungry and thirsty...overall it was a really hard day:( And during that meeting a bird pooped on my bag so it was a day when I just wanted to go back to the apartment and lay down and go to sleep. But I said a little prayer in my head and just asked for the strength to get through this day and get to the next. Then I continued on with my day. Finally at 5 we were supposed to be done but we decided to swing by a members home and talk with them and some other members that were there. Well, we decided to just have a little lesson. That little lesson turned into a big long one and it was great. One question that was asked was how can we feel the power of the scriptures in our daily lives? Elder West turned to me and said "do you want to answer this?" And I said "yes". Then I went on to explain it, but as I did, I was really thinking to myself. I talked about the feelings that we get when the Spirit is manifested to us. I talked about the peace that I feel when I read the scriptures. Right now, I read my scriptures only in French and sometimes it is very hard to read and I don’t know what they are saying. But I still feel so much peace when I do and I feel like I am doing the right thing. The scriptures are amazing things and they provide comfort for all of us and if we will read them every day, we will have light brought into our lives; that is a promise that will never fail.  The second day that was really cool was the day that I got my packages. We were teaching an anglaphone and for some reason I was having a really hard time teaching! I was having to convert from French to English in my head and several times I had to stop myself from saying French words! Then we turned around after it was done and started talking to a Francaphone which was the coolest thing in the world.

It's Official!!

This week has been a great one and it was my last week of training!! So as of now, I am no longer a trainee but a full fledge missionary! Also, today marks my 4 month mark on my mission which is crazy!! It seems like I haven't been out for very long and that means I just have that much less time to be here, which stinks. But we have the chance to go play basketball today instead of soccer so we are all very excited!! That is all for this week; I love everyone so much and wish them a happy week. I would also like to tell my little brother Koltin congrats on making the Shrine Bowl!! Now it’s a family tradition I guess. My food for you to try this week is to see if America has pineapple pop because it is the best ever! I will write you all in a week!

Elder Legerski


Monday, January 12, 2015

Back in the Flow!

Hello everyone how are you doing!?

Everything is going super well here in Cameroon and in Africa. The weeks seem to be flying by so fast now. The past few have been slow just because of Christmas and New Years, but now we are back in the flow of things and it feels really nice.

For mom, Elder West hits his 1 year mark in February and he has been in Douala for his entire mission so far. He was in town in Bonapriso for 7 months and he has been in Bonaberi ever since. There is a good chance that he gets moved very soon, but I think I might be here for a little while longer.

How do you make an Elder sandwich? 
With 3 Elders and some mattresses, of course!!

This week has been a good one as well as a frustrating one. One of our most progressing investigators named Narcisse moved to the south west for work and so we lost one of our favorite amis just like that. It is really hard because you form a relationship with them and you see them grow so much and start to understand things and then out of nowhere, people just disappear and it is really frustrating. This happens a lot; you will just go to someone's house and their neighbor will say "oh, they are traveling and they will be out of town for 2 to 3 weeks" and it really just stinks, for lack of words.
But, on the other hand, we are meeting with many, many people and it is just awesome. At church this last Sunday, we had 10 amis at church and the other companionship had 4 so overall, so we had 14 amis at church. There were so many people that came to church that they had to bring in extra chairs. I remember sitting there thinking, " this is so awesome!".  Here are all these people
who could be doing other things with their time, but they took time out of their day and came to give their day to God and to worship him. As a missionary, I can't describe the joy that you feel seeing these people do this. Also this week, one of our amis named Sonita finally came back to town as well with a woman named Linda, so Elder West and I are really excited to start teaching them.

Here in Africa, you run into the problem that peoples' brains here don't exactly work the way that our brain works and sometimes it can be very, very frustrating. When that happens, we say it is due to African logic. Well, we had a lot of problems with that this week, but I'll just give you one example. Julian, who one of our favorite amis, was meeting with us on Thursday afternoon. We were reading in the Book of Mormon about the resurrection of Jesus Christ and about His visit to the Americas.
Well, that is in 3rd Nephi and the first 2 books of the Book of Mormon are 1st and 2nd Nephi and those books are about events 600 years before the birth of Jesus Christ. Julian was really confused how one man lived so long and we explained that he did not live that long, but it was a different man and he just simply had the same name. But he did not get it, so we sat there for 20 minutes trying
to explain it and then after that, we went and got the branch president and he helped us explain it for another 15 minutes.  Fortunately, after it was all over, we got the matter resolved and that was what mattered.
Le Marche

Another lesson I want to talk about was with a member named Bayard and with his family. Bayard is the only one baptized in his whole family and he has a wife, Julie, and then 5 children: Willingston, Godlove, Issac Steve, Christian, and his only daughter, Fortune. I know the names are a little different but that is just Africa for you! Well, Bayard wanted us to teach the whole family and so we went over and asked them about themselves and one of them said that his favorite thing to do was to
"Precher l'evangile de Jesus Christ" which means "Preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ". Hearing that was so funny because he is only 9 years old!  So we had a lesson and they were all participating and talking and it was just awesome and such a fun lesson to be a part of. When we got to the end, we talked about the importance of family, of family prayer and of family home evening; it's incredible
how much they knew so already! As a part-member family with only 1 member, they still have family home evening every Monday and every morning they read together and they pray together. This really touched me, because a family who has only one member is doing all these things that many all member families struggle with. My goal is to challenge all those who can to have
family home evening and family scripture study and prayer to follow the council of the Prophet because it is truly something that helps to bring the family closer together.

My final thing for the day is to talk about the French language. I have been on my mission for just under 4 months and in the field for about 2 and a half months and I can nearly understand all of what people are saying. I can understand in lessons and I don't have to ask Elder West for clarifications all of the time. I can sit there and talk to people! Elder Larson and I talked to a girl in the Young Womans for about half an hour on Saturday night and it was a lot of fun and not only did I
know what she was saying, but I could say what I wanted to say as well. I have to give my testimony that the Lord's servants truly are blessed and that the fact that I can already speak and read and understand mostly everything is all because of the Lord.

Some one go have some chicken nuggets for me!!

Elder Legerski

Monday, January 5, 2015

Bonne Annee!!

Hello everyone how are you doing!?

As always, I'm doing fine here in Africa and it's really hot as normal but it is going well. This week seemed like one that was really long at times and then at other times, it seemed to go by really fast. As you all know, it was the New Year and it was so weird not to stay up with your friends, hanging out and talking until midnight and watching the ball drop on the television. Instead, you go to bed at 10:30 like every other night and when you get up it feels just like another day and you go to work, just like usual. But the people here in Africa do love New Years!! The streets were almost more empty than on Christmas day and I guess they say "Bonne Annee" which means "Happy New Year" for almost 2 months!!

For the New Year, we had a member of the church prepare us dinner so after a few rendez-vous we headed over and ate dinner with them and their family. It was really, really good until I got to the sauce that we had with our noodles; there was this chunk of something and I didn’t know what it was so I asked Grant, who is the member, and he said it was tripe and I had no idea what it meant so I just said okay and took a bite. It was so rubbery and very hard to chew and had little things on it that made it look like tongue. Later, I went over to Elder Larson and asked what it was because he used to work in a butcher shop. He was like "oh, its cow stomach!" So I guess I ate cow stomach this week and it wasn’t that bad. Also, I got to try the national dish of Cameroon-- ndole.

Now, the first time I tried it is was soooo bad!!! But we had a member who cooks for a living cook it for us and it wasn’t that bad. They cook it with a weed so you have to wash it a ton so it's not bitter and if you don’t, it turns out to be very, very bitter! Also, they put fish in it, but when it is prepared right it tastes very good. Also, I got to try miondo which is super good!! Whenever we have church activities I love to eat so much miondo! It has the texture of gummy bears and it is wrapped it leaves and to eat it you unwrap it and then roll it up and eat it with ndole and it is so good!! I'll have to send pictures so everyone can see! Also there is this drink called fullery and I don’t exactly know what it is but it is super good!! You have to be sure to not spill it on you because it stains your clothes really bad and if you drink more than a few cups, you will be in the bathroom for awhile!! But enough talking about food.

Like I said, this week seemed very fast at times and at other times very slow. Part of the reason why it seemed so slow is because everything seemed to break in our apartment.  First, we had a leak in our sink so we had a member come fix it. But because of the time needed and parts not working, it took over 6 hours and Elder West and I had to stay at the apartment because of mission rules.  So all we did all day was read in the scriptures and talk and it seemed to be like the longest day ever! It's so true that if you stay busy, the time flies. Secondly, one of our amis who does not have a phone didn’t come to church so we couldn’t set up another appointment with him. So until Wednesday, we were frantically trying to find him so that we could see what was going on and it was so frustrating because he was our best progressing ami. But we found him at the church on Wednesday and he said that he had just been sick so all was good. Then this morning our shower head just blew apart so I had to become the handy man and it took about an hour to fix that. Let's just say I wish we had a Home Depot 10 minutes away from our apartment!

Aside from all of the heat and the hard work and the things breaking and not going as planned, the work here is amazing. Elder West and I keep running into the problem with not having enough time to teach all of the people that we need to teach. To put it in perspective, we had 9 amis at church on Sunday with 6 of our regular amis gone so if we would have had everyone, it would have been 15 amis which would have been amazing! First, I want to talk about Julian who is hopefully going to be baptized soon. He is just an amazing guy. He is the one who does not have a phone and he works all night as a night guard. He literally eats, meets with us, and then goes to work all night and then sleeps all day. But every time we see him, he has a big smile on his face and he is so excited to talk. He is always asking questions about how he can become a better person and it makes me relect on my life and ask myself questions about if I am on the right path to become a better person. Another ami who I love is Issac, we have only known him for about a week but he is so amazing. We met him through his friend Emerey and started to teach him. He seemed to be interested and he even gave us the master script to a movie that he is writing so we could review it and tell him what we thought of it:) We talked to him about where the church building was and what time it started at, but we were not able to pass by later in the week to invite him. This last Sunday was fast and testimony meeting (for those of you who don’t know, that’s when the members of the church can stand and bear their testimony or thoughts and feelings on the church). Elder West and I showed up right at 9 as it started, since we were waiting for an ami who did not show up. And after a few people had stood and bore their testimonies, I see someone get up that I did not recognize. It turned out to be Issac!! He had found the church and come without us even having to invite him. He stood and said the things that had touched him since he had started to learn. His first time at church and he stood up in front of everyone and it was just amazing!! He stayed for all of church and we set up another rendez-vous with him. Overall, I have to say that people here are just amazing. They have spirits and hearts that can be easily touched and they are gentle people. I love being a missionary here in Cameroon:)

Well that is all I have for you this week. I hope everyone made their New Year's resolutions and you will follow through with them. I'll talk to you all in a week.  I hope you have lots of fun with the last few days of break and that school isn't too harsh on you all!! And for the parents who work all the time, I give you props 'cause its hard!! Some one go drink a Dr. Pepper for me and a Mountain Dew Live Wire for Elder Larson!!

Elder Legerski