This week, I actually had a super cool lesson. It all started a couple weeks ago, when I was walking to the chapel with my roommate Elder Tuddenham, and some Haitians were building a house, and one called over to us in English and said "I need Jesus in my life!" At first, I thought it was just someone heckling us, because all the time people are saying things in the street like "Quieres Café?" (Do you want coffee?) or people that don´t think that we believe in God will sarcastically tell us God Bless, and almost any occasion when someone tries to speak English. So this dude calls us over, and we say hi, and he says "I need Jesus in my life, and I was wondering if you guys can help me with that?" So I told him, "Yeah, we can help you with that!" Then he said "Also, I want to get baptized. Can you guys help me with that too?" And I said "Yes, we can help you with that too!" Haha, so, we talked with him, and I gave him a Spanish pamphlet, but he told us that he doesn't speak Spanish yet, and so I told him that we´d stop by his house sometime and bring him one in Creole.
So this week, my comp and I started teaching him, and this guy is AWESOME! His name is GiveLord. Yup. GiveLord, and he´s from the other side of the border. He lives here with his wife and brother. He speaks Creole, French, and English, but not Spanish; and his wife and brother speak Creole, French, and Spanish, but not English. So we´ve been teaching GiveLord in English, and it is so weird! It just doesn´t really feel as natural to talk about the gospel in English anymore. Even Praying in English is weird, and I always have Spanish words coming to mind instead of English ones! My comp speaks a little English, but not a ton, and his accent is pretty thick, so I do the majority of teaching with him. When his brother is there. I teach in English, and then my comp teaches his brother the same thing in Spanish, and we´re talking about a pamphlet that´s in Creole, and sometimes Givelord and his brother talk in Creole, so we are having Trilingual lessons over here! They are really awesome though, and I can see them progressing really well.
Something surprising that I´ve gained here, is a love for the Haitian people. Obviously this doesn´t apply to everyone, and there are many exceptions, but a lot of Dominicans I´ve met are fairly impatient, brash, and prideful. In contrast, almost all of the Haitians I´ve talked to are extremely kind, humble, and just wonderful people. There´s a lot of stigma in this country about the Haitians, and I´ve had to give a few boches (a boche is like a stern talking to, or a chastisement) to some Dominicans who have said racist remarks that I disagree with about Hatians. Yes, there are some people in Haiti who practice voodoo and witchcraft and there have been stories of cannibalism, but you can´t judge an entire race, culture, or country, based on the actions of a few people. (As a side note, I think that´s a huge problem we´re seeing in America with Islam) All in all, I love Dominicans, and I love Haitians, and I think that some people here need to cut Hatians a break, because there are some good people over there.
Other than that, we had our Branch Conference this week, and I thought that it went really well. It was hard to count everyone at church on Sunday, which is always a good sign! Also, I am SO pumped for General Conference. I´ve been pretty thrifty with my money so that I can buy the colmado out of every snack it has while the two other American Elders and I watch conference in my office. (I´ve got an air conditioner in there) haha, not to mention how excited I am to hear the words of the living prophets.
Conference is always great, and I´ve gained a newfound love for it, in addition to everything else gospel related on my mission.
Anyway, I hope you all have a great week, and that you all know how much I love you!
If you want to know what every single Evangelical churchgoer says when we talk to them, just look up 2 Nefi 29:3. Lol.--
Love, Elder Anderson