Week 12: Transfers

So.... Im staying here in Santo Antão! So happy! I love it here and never want to leave! At least 6 more weeks in the best district in the mission. I´m so lucky! 
So this week.... I´m turning into Nicole! We had a lesson with a less-active member and she gave us a little snack, basically cream of wheat, but they make it a little different. She said it was just the stuff mixed with sugar, salt, banana, and milk, but afterwards when she was explaining how to make it, she said she cooks the cream of wheat in water. So we were sooo nervous we were going to get sick! But we were fine. We were joking about it on our way to our next appointment, and I had to go to the bathroom, so we were just going to stop at the church, no big deal right? Except that sister johnson made me laugh so hard that I peed my skirt in the middle of the street! Hahaha it was so funny! Luckily no one was there, and we were right by our house so I ran in and changed super quick then off to our lesson! It was pretty hilarious. I still cant believe that that happened. That was the only crazy thing that happened this week luckily.
But we seriously always have miracles!

First of all, we had a goal of 4 baptisms this month, we just need two more. We had three that were supposed to, they just needed to come to church! Unfortunetly only one came. But! We realized that Antonia´s ( our recent convert) friend, Benvindo (45-ish), had come to chruch every week with them! And he had been present for a few of their lessons. So we started teaching him and he wants to be baptized! He was just waiting for us to ask him! He got so excited when we started talking about it so we could ask him to accept a date. Haha so cute. He also is keeping the law of chastity and the word of wisdom already! Ah! He is so ready! So he will be getting baptized this saturday with our other one who came to chruch, Silene (16).

Silene is another story, she has wanted to get baptized for a while, but her mom wouldnt let her. We have been trying to ask her for the last few weeks, but she works a TON! But we finally got her for a few minutes and she was like "yeah, of course she can get baptized." WHAT?!?! super crazy. I dont know how she changed so quickly!

And my favorite of the week. We have been teaching a less active, Herik(16), for a few weeks now with his friend, investigator, Fredwilson(16). We have been begging them to come to church and they never did. BUT! This week Herik came!!! By himself! It was just for sacrament, but we will take it, the most important meeting! He was coming with Christian(15), brother of Fredwilson, also a investigator, and was getting our recent convert, Lucas, who was sick so didnt come. So Christian bailed out and Lucas too, but Herik came! Even when the others bailed! Ah! He is going to be solid. Oh and did I ever mention that Herik, Fredwilson, and Admilson(18) (brother of Fredwilson, also an investigator) have a band! Well they all sing and are really good! I´ll have to get their songs and show them to you guys when I get home. And of course their band/music group name thing (Black Boys haha) is english and all their song titles. Haha they are so cute because they think its so cool! 

They are so excited to be baptized! We made them calendars to mark reading and praying, and church, with their baptism date, and we were stopping by to make sure they got them. Right before we knocked on the door, Admilson yells "Batismo!" haha obviously reading his calendar. And when we walked in, Christian (15!!!) was reading the book of mormon as they were eating dinner! So great. Its amazing.

I love you guys and I love this work!
Till next week,

Sister Kohlert


Week 11: Prayers

Dear Family and Friends,

Thanks for all those who prayed for Lucas this last week. He was baptized and it was beautiful. He gave the most amazing testimony. I know that he knows these things are true. Their testimonies are so pure.
I dont have much time, so just know I´m doing well and I love you all. I love my mission and I love this work. These people are truly amazing and willing to sacrifice all.

I want to share one quick experience with you all to end this letter:
We met a young man at church who came with some of his friends. We stopped by his house last night and gave them first lesson and invited them to find out if these things are true. The spirit was so strong when we got to the first vision. They (him and his family) we´re leaning in to hear every word we were saying. It will be forever one of my favorite experiences reciting the first vision for them. After, the mom said she felt so happy. After they brought out these small scones for us, and I knew they had hardly anything, being a single mom with seven kids, and an 18 year old who worked to support his family. But here they were, willing to give a portion of what they had to us. It almost brings me to tears. I just love my mission already. This work changes lives. It really does fill the soul with joy.

I love you all and I love this work,
Sister Kohlert

Excerpts about what the weather is like:

We went to a really cool place today by Ribera Grande. It was beautiful! The weather is basically the same every single day, but it is getting hotter here and May/June are the hottest months and of course im on the hottest island. BUT I LOVE IT! ah I wish you guys could be here! It's amazing. You guys would love it. I want to move here! If the schools were better, I definitely would! p.s. it doesn't rain here....like ever.

Week 10: Batismo!

Dear Family and Friends,

So this week was not that exciting... well I usually bring my journal with me and I can write down all of the crazy stuff that happened, but I forgot it this week... sorry.

But something crazy did happen! So on Sunday all of our baptisms we had planned for Saturday all didn´t come to church so none of them could be baptized. It was really sad. We ended up dropping like 3 of our investigators because they weren´t progressing any more. But we did find someone! One of the young women said she had a friend for us to teach! So we stopped by and had a lesson and set a baptismal date for May. We went home and found her teaching record because she said she had been taught before a few years ago (she´s 17 now, Irina). She had all of the lessons, and we felt like we should move her date forward, so we met with her the next day and asked her how she felt about moving it to this Saturday and she said yes! She came to church and everything and ah! She´s amazing. So we did all of the lessons again that week, everyday, and then she was baptized on Saturday. So great. I´ll send pictures one day when the computers actually like us. So that was the miracle of the week. Seriously amazing. We have only known her for a week and she is just so strong and after the first lesson she said she knows the Book of Mormon is true and that this is the church of Christ! She is such a boss! I love her!

Okay, so one thing that has been hard, one of our investigators, that I think i´ve told you guys about is Lucas. He is a minor so he needs his parents permission to be baptized. So we always talk to his mom, but a few days before we were going to talk to her about it she just got really annoyed or something. I don´t know what happened, but when we asked her she said no, and that he wasn´t old enough to make this decision and that she wouldn´t let him. My heart just dropped. This kid is amazing. He knows it is all true. He came to two sessions of conference and came to church yesterday even when his brother (who is a member) didn´t and to Irina´s baptism on Saturday. So if you guys can pray for him and that his mom will open her heart and give permission for him to be baptized, it would mean a lot.

Okay so some funny/crazy things that happened this week:
During a lesson with Antonia (the same one with the baby that peed on the floor), she asked me to say the prayer, so I started and in the middle, the baby girl just started licking my arm! Haha and no one noticed! Super funny... and weird. Then on Sunday during church she pooped on the ground. Yup. Not joking. I didn´t know what to do since I was in the middle of the row and I didn´t know where to get like paper towels or anything since they only have tissues in the bathroom. So that was pretty crazy.

We learned how to soften/pound the corn to make catchupa. You use like a round stone bowl thing with a big wooden pole with the corn in the bowl with pork to help it soften. Then you just pound it with the wooden pole to tenderize it. It was pretty sweet, and hard. I wish I had pictures!

We also went to Sao Vicente this week for zone meeting, and it was so cold! It is ALWAYS windy there, so I borrowed one of the other sisters full on parka! So weird. I was so cold and it was only like 65 degrees probably. 
On the ship/ferry on the way back, someone fainted. Everyone went to go see who it was, but me and my comp just chilled on our bench. It turned out to be one of our investigators! WHAT?!? We should have gone over! Man! Missed that opportunity!

Anyways, that´s about it for this week!
Love you guys, till next week,
Sister Kohlert


Week 9: Just Another Week in Cabo Verde

Heyo! Well I have some crazy stories this week!

So first of all, Happy Easter! I hope you all enjoyed conference in your native language. Im sure all the talks were greats, but all I got was that there were probably like six talks about marriage! Good thing I´m on a mission, but Cabo Verde needed that! No one gets married here. We did get to watch the last session in English which was a huge blessing!

Running low on time, so here´s the best of this week:
The power went out for the first time! Just for about 2 hours from 8-10 ish. We got to use candles instead so that was pretty dope. I felt like out fore fathers looking over the declaration by candle light, but I was looking at the scriptures of course.

We definitely knew that the Lord was guiding us this week! We were walking to our next appointment one night when we stopped to talk to a member whos mom was in the hospital, and just as we were leaving we saw our friend Elton! We walked home with him and we asked him where he lived, and it was the house of one of our brand new investigators who was engaged. He said it was his uncles house! What! So his uncle came to the door and he looked just like one of our other investigators, but my comp said she knew him. So she was talking to him and he said that he was baptized in1998 but had since gone inactive! What?!? We set up an appointment, and went on our way to tell our other investigator Nitch that we met someone who looked just like him. He was like oh yeah! Thats my friend, Anilton! We grew up together! So crazy! Nitch didnt know that Anilton was a member though, so now we are going to teach them all together and they will all get baptized! Haha crazy!

Some info about the people we teach:

I feel like most of the people we teach are 14 to 25, most are male. For some reason it seems like there are a lot more guys here. Maybe all the girls just stay inside all day, I don't know. But the really strong investigators are always young, they are just so willing! We are teaching the younger brother (14) of a recent convert (21) and he is just amazing! He listens so well in lessons and is just so happy all the time. You can tell that he has seen the change in his brother and he wants the same. 

We are also teaching another girl (17) who was taught a few times by missionaries a few months ago, and we asked her about her reading the Book of Mormon, and she said she hasn´t read for a while, but she knows that its true and she was just waiting for us to ask her to be baptized. She is so excited, but she just needs to start reading and going to church again. She did come to general conference though! 

You know exactly who the active members are when you go to conference here. There were only, at most, 40 people at conference, and majority were the same ones. People just don't understand why church is important and it can be really frustrating here. A lot of the members are inactive. There are a ton of young men who are inactive and were only baptized a few months ago. They have so much potential! But the ones that go are truly converted. They all want to go on missions, and one is leaving today for his mission in Brazil. When I asked him what he likes to do in his free time he said study the scriptures. 100% serious. He is amazing. Anyways, most of the members are young, some older, some families, but very few. Most are the only members in their families.

Okay some funny things:

1 - We were teaching a girl about the Word of Wisdom and Law of Chastity and how our bodies are like temples. We showed her a picture of the SLC temple and asked her to describe it. She said full of light, pure, clean, and white. Then pure and white.... *looks at her skin (shes African American)* ... on the inside.` Right then our investigator looks right at me.... haha, am I really that white! Geez! Super funny though.

2 - Last thing, we always hike up these dirt paths to get home at night, and we decided to take a different one. Bad idea. We couldnt see ANYTHING! Sister Johnson ended walking into a sticky bush and getting cut up! Then we ended up climbing up this hill on our hands and knees trying not to slide down haha it was pretty hilarious. 
Just another day in Cabo Verde! (missionary handbook: dont climb mountains. Whoops.)

I know that God´s hand is in this work, and I know that He guides the missionaries! I love you all, have a great week!

Till then,
Sister Kohlert