Sunday, July 6, 2014

Week 45

Sorry I'm sending this email a bit later than usual. Today we went out into the jungle. We took a boat upstream a couple hours to a city called Song, then a van into the jungle 1/2 an hour until we were at the kampung (the jungle home) of a recent convert from a different branch. It was very fun. We took epic pictures, ate pickled, rotten meat, played with a monkey, etc. Ibans, are, as you have probably gathered, the predominant local tribe. There are dozens of other ones, as well, but especially here in Sibu, the members are Iban. Many of them live here in the Sibu, for work or school, but they all have a home in the jungle which they call kampung. They generally live in a longhouse, which is just a long house with many doors for different families. Interestingly enough, their kampung house is almost always nicer than their house in the city. Little wonder, then, that they love to return to kampung as often as they can. Ibans are always way fun. After a lesson this week, we walked downstairs at the church, and one Iban branch saw us and invited us in to eat and celebrate with them. This happens often. I also got to do a few more baptismal interviews for Ibans this week, plus exchanges once into an Iban area. Due to all this interaction, my Malay is improving steadily. Not yet good, though. However, the people I work with and love the most are the Chinese. This week we were able to meet with one investigator family and introduce the Book of Mormon to the father. When followed up with the next day about his reading, he said he was tired from reading all day long. Miracle! We also met with a few people this week and discussed the temple. What a glorious opportunity the temple is to those who live near it. When I return home, I won't take such a sacred place for granted. I would encourage all who are able to to make the temple a more important part of their lives. In our mission, we have been emphasizing new investigators, and the Lord has placed them in our hand this week. Very cool. Even more should be on the way. In other good news, I had no flat tires this week. It's been a good one, talk to you next week! Love, Elder Earl

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