This week included a Jamaican funeral and a few disappointments. Jamaican funerals last for 9 nights. The whole family gets together for nine nights of drinking, smoking, eating, and dominoes. I have never seen so much ganja in one place. Wow. Leonardo's uncle was shot by the police a while ago. We had the chance to drop by the 9 nights and the funeral. The nine nights was uneventful, but a great cultural experience. The funeral was a classic Jamaican funeral. It took place at the Bethel Temple Apostolic Church near Mack corner. It was full of songs by a black choir, and praises to the Lord. Once again, it was quite the cultural experience.
We took some time not long ago to help the family build the grave. We hauled wheelbarrows full of dirt and rocks to the grave for the mixing of cement. We were just walking straight over graves, and most of the family was camping out on them. Most of the graves were unmarked and breaking. Family history work is going to be a nightmare here.
When we dropped by the 9 nights on Saturday night, my favorite investigator was smoking and drinking. It almost broke my heart. We have not seen him again yet, but I am hoping and praying that he will be able to kick the drugs and get on the right path.
Other than that, we met a short Guatemalan woman who recently moved here. She took the missionary lessons in Guatemala and wants to be baptized. She had been looking for the church for over a month here when she ran into some missionaries. We got the referral, and we are excited to start working with her. Her english is not great, and its honestly wierd that she is not black. But, that's just part of this mission.
Mission prep is going well. All of the youth in the branch are slowly trying to find the motivation to go. I really don't know what is holding them back. I am confident that most of them will get there though. They are a great group of youth, and I love them very much.
We got to "chef a pot" with Leonardo earlier this week. We went over to his house and picked ackee off the tree to eat. We pitted it, and then cooked it with saltfish over a charcoal fire. It was delicious food. It is so cool that you can just pick your food off the trees here and eat it. This is just another reason I love jamaica. Ackee tastes a little like scrambled eggs when cooked. You eat it with rice, saltfish, and fried vegetables. Saltfish is preserved fish. It is salt cured and can be eaten raw. It is really salty and not that great raw though. Overall review- ackee and saltfish when cooked well are amazing.
Mom- I need a no bake cookies recipe. A branch member, brother R. said some missionaries made them for him once, and he wants them again. Bro. R. is a great guy. He has had a lot of problems in his life, but he is getting through. We saw him while he was on a date the other night. He was soooo happy. It was great to see him like that. Anyway, no bake cookies recipe would be great- and thanks for the UW info. I love you all. Enjoy halloween for me and let matthew watch that movie he wants to watch at his party.
Love, elder pullan