Week 7 New Years

…bless the rains in Africa


                       Elders Bemis and Barington from Arizona; Elder Sani from Zimbabwe; Carter from Alaska down in front.

Happy New Year from the Uganda Kampala Mission!! Pictures are from the crazy storms (I blessed the rains down in Africa) New Year party with my district, and food from Ethiopia!

We bought beaded ties for 15k (3$UDS) and since it was New Years and bad stuff can happen on that day (like beheadings and riots or just drunk mobs of people) we had to be inside by 7PM this New Year. But it was fun! We played cards and watched all the people run around outside our compound. Our security guard had is work cut out for him that night…

We had another crazy storm on the 1st, it wrecked some of the mud huts that people stay in so lots of service planed for this week!  (picture below is the view from Carter’s apartment after the rainstorm)


I’m buying some authentic African shirts that should be done this week and I am super stoked about it! Its quality stuff!

I’m slowly but surly learning the language, its a very basic language so its not to hard to understand but speaking it is somehow difficult.

We had a freak incident with one of our investigators (lets call him John) this past week. He said he was homeless so the bishop let him stay in his house and let him work in his company part time. The bishop is the lawn mower for all of the churches in Uganda.  This went on for a few weeks until one day we could not find John anywhere. Turns out he had stolen 50 SIM cards from the neighbor’s house and the bishop’s weed whacker. He got caught by another member, so John just hopped on a boda boda and left… After searching through his stuff at the bishop’s house to see what else he had taken we found a fake ID badge that said he was a journalist and 70k in his wallet (some people 70k is a months worth of work). Also he had an address to a rental house he stays at about an hour walk away. After walking to the general area of his address (because there is no such thing as an actual address in Uganda) we talked to the landlord and she said that John has not been home for some 3 months time….

So the time he was living at bishops house he was using it as a base camp to hit more restaurants for free food with the journalist ID and nabbing enough stuff to pay for rent back where he stayed. As of now we have no idea where he went or if we will ever see him again

The food here most of the time you never use forks or spoons. Sometimes its considered rude to eat with them because their main purpose is to scoop! So those Ethiopia dishes you eat all of that white stuff! Its fermented rice with pork and beef and the spoon is just to dump it on the plate!

Other than that things are going well! We are teaching a wonderful family who will be baptized on the 8th. This year’s mission goal is 1100 baptisms!!   The work is hard but it’s worth it! It just takes one step at a time with anything you want to accomplish!

Love you all!

Elder Moncur

Week 6: A Tiny Lizard

… and a tiny huge miracle

Note: I added a few lines for clarification in italics AND we got to Face Time with Carter on Christmas! He looks so good and is doing so awesome. He loves the people so much.

In his phone call Carter told us a lot more about the extreme poverty in the area he is in. Wealth is measured by how much and how often you can eat. The people work so hard every day for the food they eat and yet they still share what they have with missionaries by way of meals and time. 


Carter with Elder Nate Haines, his friend from EFY 2013

So a lot happened this week! My trainer got the same virus as me, (as well as the whole zone haha) [a zone is a group of missionaries within a certain area] and we are teaching so many people its crazy!

So we have these birds hear that are like 6 ft tall.. They look like the pelican things that you see in the beginning of Lion King! huge! Also caught a lizard who I named Jeremiah!
I FOUND Elder Haines! I went to EFY with the guy in like 2014 or 13 and we now are in the same mission! It was a fantastic reunion, the Lord works in mysterious ways! [EFY is short for Especially For Youth… it’s a huge youth conference that is held all over the United States, but Carter and this guy Nate Haines from Arizona were in the same group down at an EFY session at BYU Provo. BYU Provo hosts thousands of kids for EFY every summer, so it was pretty cool that Nate and Carter are in Uganda together as missionaries!]
So some details about Uganda after the sun goes down, which is at 6:30 pm, the sisters in the mission have to be inside and locked up by 6 and it is for this reason, so on Friday of this week my comp is on the phone, so he is busy, and this very aggressive drunk man confronts me and says, “Why is there a Muzungo ( racist word for, white man) in the streets?” I looked at him with a very confused face, turned as if i was looking  behind me for the white guy he was talking about, and told him “I do not see any Muzungo around here, but if I see one, I’ll let you know.” After saying that, he look content and walked away! Unfortunately some other elders about a 1 hour drive away had to defend there house from some guy that did not like white people, so after dark you need to be aware! Watch your wallet, look down, and don’t make eye contact, and walk fast!
So with teaching people: on Tuesday we have plans with the bishop and a few members to go and teach 21 people!! 3 families of 7 who all live together! and there is another family that wants to be baptized, but the mom speaks very little English so her husband translates. It’s very difficult for her to feel the spirit. But this last lesson we taught her how to pray, and when she closed the lesson with a prayer, she spoke in perfect English. A woman who knows maybe 20 words in English spoke words you would use in a college essay, and without a Uganda accent either. I felt like I was witnessing a miracle.
Talking to my family for xmas was very spiritual. and i thank you ALL for the emails and prayers! ill see you all next week!

Yours Truly,

Elder Moncur.
Christmas FaceTime call with the family 🙂

Worms, malaria!!  

When taking a shower has visitors….

Dec 19, 2016

Not a lot to talk about this week besides I got super sick and the mission president thought it was malaria. I’ll tell that story in a sec but first is the worms…

We have worms in our shower, 3 little ones, our drain sucks because the plumbing was done wrong so after a few minuets it starts to fill up, and that is when these tiny little worms crawl out, so after that its a game cat and mouse to try and step on them with your flip flops, but not let them suck onto the side of your ankle. They are really good at dodging because there is about 5 inches of water in the shower so they have some to get out of the way. So after a few days of this I named them, Richard, Johnson, and Peter!  I’m kinda attached now (not really). I think I killed Johnson yesterday, he was stupid and only came out when there was 2 inches of water and he got smashed!!, also in the shower you have to use the water to kill the mosquitos that fly around over head before you get in,

Second thing mosquitos can rip though the nets we set up over our beds. I woke up with 5 on my arm! Freaking nasty, anyway so after 34 bug bites later I got real sick 101 fever, head ace, stomach ace, and wicked muscle pain, it hurt to walk and I was so weak I could not flex my arms. So I played in a pool of sweet all day and cried from the pain. SPIRITUAL MOMENT , the pain was so much at one point I crawled off the couch and went to my bed room and plead with god to help me in anyway he can, not to get rid of the pain but to at least elevate it, or make me able to bear it, in the middle of the prayer I felt a hand on my back and a voice in my head said, its ok, you can make it. I looked over to who was touching my back and no one was there. The next day all I had was a headache and I could eat food again. After the tests came back it turns out it was just a virus and not malaria! Guys, prayer works you just need to have faith that god can help and he will.

A few nights ago some Indians invited us to a party and we thought they were going to rob us so we came to the door with a wackerjack, (native weapon) kitchen knives and a dinner plate!

Also some lady freaking jipped me, I bought mangos and she freaking gave me avocados!! But it was to dark to tell till I got home

Last thing is our rich Muslim neighbors, they are in the flat next to us in the compound and they had a wicked party last night till like 2 am playing Arab music and drinking, there is a drink called Morua and its Ugandan moonshine and 6-7 people take 1 meter straws and all drink out of it till they pass out its kinda fun to watch. But it’s sad that some people save all day just to do that. Other than that it was just a sick buggy week, I fixed the net for our bed and I lock the place up better than Fort Knox and now I’m safe and healthy!!

Elder Moncur

Made it to Uganda

Kololo area and a wasp…

Note from Mom: Carter would really love to hear from any and all of you!! ( he my or may not have mentioned that he was a little homesick in a separate email to me 🙂 His email and address are listed in the sidebar… 🙂

Africa Airlines feeds you on any flight, it was a 3 hour flight to Uganda and they fed us an entire freaking meal!! Delta sucks, 16 hour flight to SA and no food at all…

Uganda has so much work its crazy. One guy that got baptized has lived alone since he was 6, and his only friends that he called family were Muslim. So when he converted, they threatened to kill him, so he ran from home. But his testimony is so strong. He is always willing to help and he thanks God every day.
I killed a wasp half the size of a AA battery.
I live in a compound with a guard. All the guards here are packing heat… like AK47 or a 30 odd 6. It’s a 5 mile walk to my area with loads of hills, 10+ miles a day is rough. We buy this street food called Rolex. It’s not a watch, it’s eggs and fried bread. 4 eggs and some bread costs like 58 cents in american $.
No police in the slums. the crowds do justice to crime here. If a thief gets caught, or someone yells “Thief! Thief!” no joke like everyone in the street will attack him. They usually don’t live…
I’m trying to upload pics but there is a crazy storm and the wifi sucks ( I bless the rains down in Africa [this is a direct reference to teh song Africa, by Toto]). I’ll probably just send the card home when its full and momma can post them all, but one of them is the temple is South Africa; 2  is the area where I walk through; and 3 is the big freaking wasp; #4  is of my area; like everything in the picture I walk to and teach people.
We get at least 2-3 new contacts a day it’s so powerful. I’m in the Kampala city center called Kololo, and its full of the slums. Like it’s rare to have running water for those people, but just on the other side of the street is a compound of 2-3 apartments with a hired guard and all the cars inside are BMW. The people in the slums, they live off of maybe 50,000 shillings a month, which is 15$.
the smell. Oh. My. Goodness. The smell is atrocious. Almost sinful. But the people are so nice everyone says, “hi,” unless they are drunk. Which is about half the people when the sun goes down. Also, if you are a girl over the age of 22, and don’t have a kid yet, it’s rare. There is no self control here. It’s somewhat sad.
I have seen 2 boda crashes so far, (moter bike taxi). They are like ants in traffic. They weave in and out of the cars. It’s so hectic. And crossing the street for me and my companion is crazy. I say a prayer each time I cross this 4X4 lane road. (4 lanes then a median then another 4 lanes). I call it Frogger Road. No joke. You need to time the driving speed of the cars, watch out for bodas, and the people selling food/ preachers.
You can tell how well off people are here by what food they feed you. I feel bad when I’m only fed beans and rice because that’s the best they have to offer, and usually they don’t eat with us. Very humbling. The kids in the streets will play with anything. Walking today, I saw them sledding down an asphalt road in a Jerry can, but they use bike tires and roll them all over the place or make toys out of trash.
Midway though this email the storm took the power out.  I’m back an hour later, I road a camel and bought a watch during the storm. It was super nice. The watch from a far looks like a Calvin Klein watch, but if you look super close it says Galvin Klein. i saw Nike shoes that say Nice or Jordans, but the letter O is a zero, all for less than 3$ (15, 000 shillings) and I have heard that my emails are not proofed so I apologize. Also, fun fact, I pick up accents super fast. Most LDS members think I have been out for a year or so and are super surprised that it’s only been 5 days. I’m usually emailing around 2;30-4;00 pm or 4 am Alaska time, but even if you’re not awake please email me any time, I don’t have anyone’s email so I’m sorry if you have expected a personal email, i just don’t have it haha, but that’s all for this week. thank you all for the support! I pray that all of you stay safe and happy.

Week 2 Johannesburg, South Africa MTC

…the boogie man

November 29, 2016

Last week in the MTC, next Tuesday I will be flying to Uganda Kampala. Since I’m flying on Tuesday when I normally write, I will not be emailing that day, so don’t worry I didn’t die…

This week we played soccer in the rain and I heard a few languages that I cant spell because it’s all in clicks or it’s not even a written language.

Africa has its own version of the boogie man, it’s called the Tokoloshi it’s a 1-meter tall human that eats your teeth if you sleep with your mouth open. So to counter it you either sleep up high or just don’t snore!

I’m the district leader now, and my new companion is Elder Tucker from Utah. Being in charge of 18 year olds is rough to say the least. I know I’m only one year older but it makes a difference.

My testimony of the church is growing daily. I have read the scriptures more in this week and a half than I have all my life. If any of you are inclined I invite you to read Isaiah chapter 12 verse 2. It is by far my favorite scripture.

One more thing to add before I go, I have learned that 3 other missionaries are coming to Uganda with me, two of them were adopted from Ethiopia at a young age and the third is from Zimbabwe. So even though I’m not the only one going to Uganda now, I’m still the only white guy going ha-ha. Kind of intimidating but the Lord knows better.

REMINDER I will not be emailing next week so don’t worry I’m alive I’m just travailing to Uganda next week.

Week 1 Johannesburg South Africa MTC

the word ‘Crap’ is a swear word

(note: The picture with this post is from Wyoming this summer after Carter got his call.. The wifi at the Missionary Training Center [MTC] is too slow to upload pictures right now)

I made it south Africa!! It’s hot like 80 every day. But its wicked cool; my first compainion is from Zambia and his name is Wamunyima (don’t worry if you cant pronounce it) we play soccer everyday. I’m like the only white guy that is semi good at the sport. And the entire MTC is in a compound with a 24 hour security guard, so surrounding the perimeter is a  6ft brick wall with an electric fence on top. But all of South Africa is like that around every house. No kids play outside ever! I have heard so many languges so far I have heard Malagasi (the language of Madagascar) Olsa, which starts with clicking your tongue so it sounds like (click). A few other ones are Ndebeole, Zola, and Swahili. Teaching investagators is hard but I’m learning a lot about the gospel and what it really means. It’s kinda scary that I’m the only guy out of 32 missionaries going to Uganda. The rest are going to Cape town, Kenya, and Zimbabwe. Apparently Uganda is a rare mission even with the African missions. Oh and I get more shots… like lots more, my arms are numb.

Haven’t seen any wildlife yet only a few birds, but some weird things about the culture here: they drive on the left; they have a horrible smog problem; and the word ‘Crap’ is a swear word, when the S word is normal. All of the cars are about half the size and no one owns a truck.

Other than that I’m loving life and I cant wait to get out of the MTC and get to Uganda! Apparently it is grasshopper season… anyway thats all for now, hopefully I didn’t ramble on too much

Yours Truly,

Elder Moncur