This post is all of an email from Elder Booth. This time, the pictures are incorporated into Elder Booth's email...
Date: April 12, 2009 8:08:12 PM PDT
Subject: Happy!! Easter!!
Hey everybody. I hope this email finds you having a very good and Happy Easter. Sorry again for not getting a very good email last week. If it makes you feel any better, I'm pretty sure I was more angry than you. It's all good though - I will just try and make this one that much cooler.
Well, this week was pretty interesting. They kind of celebrate Easter a little differently than we do. Actually, it really isn't Easter Sunday as it is Easter week. They actually call it Holy Week. My companion was explaining some of the things and it is kind of crazy. It doesn't really start getting wierd until Good Friday. Everything is closed and they are all watching some priest guy on the TV and radio. I have no idea what he was going on about. I really didn't care, though. Well I guess they have to watch it since nothing else is on. It's kind of like when you don't have satellite and the only thing on is the presidential debate. That was always a bummer. That always meant I had to get up and actually do something. Watching was never really an option. It's pretty much the same here. All of the kids were out playing more than usual because they had nothing to watch and all of the parents were inside trying to listen. It actually hindered the work quite a bit. We kept getting punted by people who wanted to watch the other people teach. There were a lot of people curious as to why we really did not celebrate the week thing. We just told them that we try and remember the Atonement every week and not just once a year. I don't know if they liked that too much, but I guess the truth hurts. Just ask Laman and Lemuel. they will tell you all about it. So ya, that was pretty weird. Then at night it got even weirder. A bunch of people all get in this funeral procession (sorry can't spell) type thing and march down the streets while carrying big statues of saints and Christ. The most disturbing one was at the end. they had a big class coffin thing with Jesus inside. It would not have been bad, but he was all bloody and stuff. One of the elders called it the black parade. That was a new experience for me. I guess it could have been worse though, because in other places they actually crucify people in remembrance. My trainer was telling me of this guy in his old area who had permanent holes in his hands from getting crucified every year. That would be a little creepy to see.
Saturday and Sunday were still pretty normal except everybody was still gone and punted us. Oh, and I guess they say you are not supposed to do anything on Saturday because if you get cut or hurt in anyway it will never heal right or something like that. I'm good, I think. I couldn't find any cuts at the end of the day.
Well, our investigators are doing about the same. Sister Mary Ann did have the baby and her name is Jade. She is really cute, plus I like the name a lot. That's a good one for a girl. There are still a lot of problems with the marriage, so I don't know if I will be here to see how that works out. Actually, I am pretty sure I won't be. Sister Amy still has not received her answer. I am beginning to worry, but we just have to have faith and hope that she has faith as well.
Jonard is still very strong. I love teaching him because he is very spiritual and fun. It is a sure thing he will be baptized on the 29th. Our president was a little disappointed we only had one for the month of April, but I think it is alright. He cares about the numbers a little more than I do. He actually cares about them a little more than a lot of people do. Ya, all the rest are pretty much the same. We did have one the said she would not be joining our church but it was alright if we kept coming back to teach. So we will probably have drop her. I guess it just is not her time.
The other culture thing that was cool this week was a funeral. It was a fairly prominent person in the ward that died, so the funeral was a big deal. First, we went to the viewing, which was cool. My companion got volunteered to give a talk right there on the spot. I felt kind of bad for him until I found out that I would be the one dedicating the grave the next day. So I was pretty nervous the whole next day. We were very involved. We helped carry the coffin and everything. It turns out though, that right when I was expecting to hear my name being announced, they said that the previous bishop would do it. I was kind of relieved, but I will admit that it would have been kind of cool to do. The graveyards are kind of cool. They do the whole stacking thing. There are just a bunch of cement boxes. So that was cool.
(Here are a few pictures of it. Elder Booth did feel a little creepy taking them)...
We actually got to watch general conference this Saturday and Easter Sunday. I have now watched every single session, including the priesthood session without falling asleep. I even took about five pages of notes. I would recommend that, actually. You get a lot more out of it. It was an amazing conference. It was truly a spiritual experience. I did notice they talked a lot about the hard times going on right now. When they were fully justified in just saying I told you so, they actually gave words of encouragement. Be happy and everything will be alright, as long as you are on the Lord's side. I think my favorite talk was Elder Holland. He really opened my eyes on the pains of the Lord Jesus Christ. That was amazing. So I encourage all of you as well to keep an upbeat attitude. If you have faith then you will not fear. I love you all and hope you will continue in the work of the lord. Thanks for your amazing love and support.
Here they are leaving the graveyard:
This is another surrounding area: