Monday, October 24, 2016

Zone Conference - October 24, 2016

Man this week was awesome!
So we had a big meeting with a ton of missionaries this week, I think there were like 20 of us there. It was great because I got to see guys I had served around in Ladysmith and some of my former companions Elder Razafindrakoto and Elder Chapo. It's always great to see people you shared great experiences with. Its crazy because soon Elder Raza goes home so I will be an orphan.
At this meeting we got to hear from our mission president, President Thompson and his wife, also a General Authority was there, his name is Elder Palmer from New Zealand, his wife spoke as well.

They gave some great talks about missionary work and how we can be more effective in everything we do. It was great to hear their opinions on things and how we can do better.

Besides that though the week was the same as always, teaching investigators and helping them progress in the gospel. Its so much fun to get to know all the different people I meet here and become part of their lives if only for a short time.
This next week will be 7 months which is crazy, its weird not to be the young guy anymore but its very nice at the same time haha.
I love you all and hope you have a great week this week.
Elder Knutsen


6 1/2 months - October 17, 2016

So I can't think of any clever titles so I guess how long I've been on mission will have to suffice.

So this week was pretty boring for the most part.
Tuesday we didn't have anything special, just saw one of our prime investigators and she told us she had received an answer that the book of mormon was true which made us feel great, she is going to be baptized on Nov 13th so I'm super pumped for that.
Wednesday we had a zone training meeting in which we found out that we have a big zone conference in Durban tomorrow the 18th. also we got some new weekly goals from our mission President and they are pretty high.
Thursday, Friday and Saturday were kind ofthe same thing, just visited people and had fun talking and interacting with all these different people. the people are definitely the best part of mission, getting to know new people all the time and learning about them has been amazing.
Sunday we had church which was 4 hours long because we finished watching conference kind of, we still have to watch priesthood. sunday was also cool because it is 10 weeks from when we get to call home (christmas). I hadn't thought about it for a long time but it made me realize how long its been since I have seen my family, but the crazy thing is I didn't get home sick! I just was grateful for all the cool experiences I have been having that have been keeping us very busy.
Today we went to the beach down in Amanzimtoti. Its really cool because the waves are huge and when we go we are the only ones on the beach so we can just relax and take it in. it helps relieve all the stress we have. The ocean is one of the reasons i'm glad to be on the coast now.

Tomorrow we have a sweet meeting with a general authority which i'm pumped for, its gonna be great.
I love you all and hope you have a great week.

Elder K

Monday, October 10, 2016

Time Flies - October 10, 2016

Man time flies!

It's crazy that my first week with my new companion is already over, and its crazy that he goes home at the end of these 6 weeks so its really exciting for him.

So Tuesday this week we had to drive to Pine Town about 25 minutes away to swap companions, I dropped off Elder Chapo and picked up Elder Opiyo.

Wednesday wasn't to exciting, just helping my companion get used to the new area, its crazy I thought I didn't know Umlazi very well but once you start driving around you realize you know it better than you give yourself credit for.

Thursday we attended a funeral for a girl we were teaching, it was really sad because she was only 20 years old. her parents were super grateful that we came though ( they are not members). We were just glad to be able to support them in this difficult time.

the rest of the week wasn't too exciting except Sunday because we got to watch conference which was cool, everyone has to go to the chapel. we still actually haven't finished it we have Sunday afternoon and priesthood to watch still.

Today we did a little shopping but mostly just relaxed. we have to go to Durban a little later today because the guys who we live with car was being worked on so we have to take them to pick it up.

I think that's about everything, I love SA and I love being on mission!

Have a great week.

Elder Knutsen


Monday, October 3, 2016

Interviews & Training, Oct. 3, 2016

President Thompson traveled the entire mission last week to interview the elders and do small group training. We love all these fabulous young men, and appreciate their dedication at being great missionaries.


Goodbye - Oct. 3, 2016

So this week was great, and sad at the same time.

We found out Saturday night that Elder Chapo would be leaving and I would be getting a new companion, who's name is Elder Ophiyo from Uganda. He is very old on mission like 23 months old so I'm excited to be with him so I can learn from him and keep becoming a better missionary.

So Tuesday we had a great day, it rained and at night the power was off in parts of Umlazi (they do it on purpose) so we sat in a couple houses only lit by a candle.

Wednesday we had a training meeting with our whole zone. its always cool to meet together and talk and figure out what we can be doing better, we have some great zone leaders.

Thursday was just another day of good apps, the weather was super nice that day.

Friday was great because it was the day that 6 months ago I got to South Africa, its so hard to believe that it has already been six months, 1/2 a year! it kinda blew my mind.

Saturday we went to a unveiling, which is pretty much just a little ceremony they have when they reveal someones tombstone, then we got some great food afterwards. Then later that night we got the transfer news.

Sunday was cool because it was some missionaries last Sunday on mission, they get to pick where they go for church their last week and Umlazi W is a very common place so we got to talk to some guys who right now are flying back home.

today we didn't do to much, I went and got a sweet new haircut from a guy from India, but besides that we didn't do much!

I'll tell you about my new comp next week.

I hope you all have a great week and I love you all!

Elder K

6 months - Sept 26, 2016

It is so crazy that this friday I will have been on mission for 6 months!

Most of the time it seems like it is going pretty quick, Days kinda blur into one another, its crazy that this is the last week for this transfer so Saturday night I will be finding out if I am getting a new comp or a new area or if everything is staying the same. I really hope I get to stay in Umlazi, its such a great place.

Also I am getting fat, kinda crazy but I weighed myself back in august and I had gained 10 lbs since I had left home, I probably have gained more since then too because we get fed every single night except sundays and on some nights we get fed twice, the food here is so good though.

So this week was great though, on tuesday we painted at a gogo's house which took a good chunk out of our day but it was great to do that for here.

wednesday we didn't d anything to exciting, just had a busy day of apps

Thursday wasn't the best best because we had to go to town (Durban) and pick up our car, they were doing some work on it so they had us driving a different one this last week but then they wanted to switch back and came back to Umlazi right during rush hour so we got stuck in traffic for a bit.

Friday was a great day, we had some great lessons and got to meet with some amazing people, all the people are amazing but these ones were extra amazing, haha.

Saturday was super lame, so it was heritage day which is just a big cultural day were people have parties and such and our ward was supposed to have one but then Saturday morning our bishop cancelled it without telling alot of people so some people walked to our chapel and there was no activity which sucked and it was kinda embarrassing for us because we invited some people but bishop didn't tell us it was cancelled so we had to take the blame and say sorry to a lot of people.

Sunday was church and just more apps

today we went down to Amanzimtoti which is like 15 minuets south of us and went to the beach, it was super nice to walk on the sand and enjoy the sun, it was super windy though and so the sandy was flying around and blasting our legs, it was even a little painful but not enough to stop us from enjoying it.

I think that's about it. I'm excited for this next week and really hope its not my last in Umlazi.

I love you all and hope you have a great week.

Elder K ( no one can say my last name here so I have become Elder K to everyone)

Free Fallin - Sept. 19, 2016

Hello everyone!

So this week wasn't too much different from the past, we visited people, taught lessons, that sort of stuff but on Wednesday our zone had a training meeting so that was a nice chance to meet with other missionaries and learn how we can become more effective.

Today was the highlight though, we drove about an hour and a half south to a place called Lake Eland Game reserve, google it its pretty incredible, but the big thing is that we went zip lining on Africa's biggest zip line, which was so much fun, it was 14 different lines and some were as long as 600 M and we got up to speeds of almost 100 kmh's which was super awesome, we were flying through trees and over this lake which we could touch as we went past! it was so much fun and such a cool chance to do something to relax and enjoy or p day.

Now we have more work planned for this week, more people to interact with and get to know which I'm always excited about!

I love being on mission, it's fantastic

I love you all.

Elder K

The Wild West - Sept. 12, 2016

So this week was rather uneventful, until Saturday, but I'll get there in a minute.

on Monday and Tuesday we just visited people like usual, nothing new or exciting just working hard.

on Wednesday though we had interviews with our mission president and then a little meeting with like 8 missionaries after. its always nice to talk to President Thompson. Its great to hear how he thinks we are doing and meeting with him is always a confidence booster.

Thursday and Friday was more or less the same thing as ever, meeting with people and have fun with new people, that's one of my favorite things is the people, it so much fun to interact with them and get to know them because they are all such amazing people.

Saturday is when the crazy stuff happened, we started out that morning playing soccer with some other missionaries and some members, that's a pretty big thing here, to play soccer every Saturday morning. then later that day we went to a members house to watch the Manchester city vs Manchester united match, I didn't like soccer back home but here its just a big part of life and I definitely am starting to enjoy it. then we went through out the rest of the day visiting people, later that night we went to our dinner app and when we were finished at 9 pm we went outside and found somebody had done some serious damage to our car, the rear left window was smashed in and we had a big new dent in the trunk. we had to go get the window fixed today and they will do the rest of the work later this week. we were lucky though that whoever broke our window didn't take anything.

Besides that, I think that's all the action for this week. Umlazi is great and I love it so much.

Have a great week everyone,

Love, Elder Knutsen

5 months down - Sept. 5, 2016

So this week went by super fast,

Monday we didn't do much besides email and relax.

Tuesday was crazy, so we went to go pick one of our members up who helps us teach and he was at this grocery store in the township, so we went and parked outside, all of a sudden about 50 feet to our left we hear gun shots and we see two guys with guns who shot this guy trying to steal from them, they only shot him in the leg though so we got out of our car and went over and watched for a bit. Nothing happened after he got shot but it was still crazy.

Wednesday we went to go pick him up again and this time while we drove there we saw a car get t boned which was also crazy, traffic lights are always out here so sometimes you pull out thinking someone will stop for you and treat it like a stop sign but 90% of the time the person going straight doesn't even stop which can be annoying.

besides that not to much happened, Saturday we played soccer for a couple hours which was fun.

The weather is hot here, way hotter than in Ladysmith but I am adjusting.

This area is awesome, the people are awesome, everything is awesome.

have a great week,

Elder Knutsen

Shots fired - August 29, 2016

Hello Everyone

So this week was kinda blur, trying to get used to new people and a new area makes time go quick.

Umlazi is amazing, it also is a maze! the roads get so tiny and they have huge turns and tight corns it can be kinda crazy sometimes. also there are no speed limits, the only way they control speed is they have speed bumps all over which ca be super annoying. its so nice when you get on a road that doesn't have them.

The house here are crazy, they have tons of hills here and houses are everywhere and anywhere, if you could put a house there one is there. they build like miny ledges so you look u and there is a house above you only like maybe 10 feet back, its crazy. its hard to describe it even close to how it really looks.

Its crazy though, the ward here is huge, this Sunday we had 195 people there which was insane, I think it is the biggest ward in the mission. we have 4 missionaries for this one ward.

So Like I said Umlazi is kinda dangerous if you arent careful, luckily we have a member who comes ot with us every single day, its nice because he knows all the area like the back of his hand. his name is Lucky. but Like I was saying about danger you hear gunshots all the time so I keep a count of every time I hear one and right now it is up to 16 which is kinda crazy.

Besides that I don;t think there is anything else, I love the people here already, it's kinda crazy how quickly we start to love people here.

I hope you all have a great week love you all,

Elder Knutsen