A Mitini and Matua Day - We taught in Mitini in the morning and traveled to Matua to teach in the afternoon as we do about every other week. This is a family village and we are teaching mostly the sisters as the husbands are working in the shambas and other places. What a special experience as we sing and talk about the gospel. They are so receptive and eager to learn. This time we took pictures and crayons for the children to color and some of the sisters who tended the children called it their “primary” as they used the Book of Mormon Story Book and told them about Christ's visit to the Nephites and then helped them color a picture. The children loved it; we wish we had a picture. After class, Sister Blake began a keyboard class while Elder Blake fitted four sisters with glasses so they can read. We have given almost all the $1. reading glasses from All-a-Dollar glasses away to very grateful brothers and sisters. April brought these, and we need to find a way to get some more here from home.
Another Wonderful Baptism Day – Saturday we picked up the Elders and went to Kyambeke for the baptism of 7 members of the ZEE (Zero English Experience) class. They were so excited as they didn't know if they would ever learn enough English to pass the baptism interview, and now they have been given permission to be interviewed in Kikamba. What a blessing to them. Also the husband of another new member was baptized and a sweet little 8-year-old primary girl. We love these people and our hearts are full as we see their progress in the gospel.
Helpful Translators?? – Understanding the words spoken by a majority of Kenyans continues to be a challenge for us. Likewise, "up country" people have major difficulty in understanding our Mzungu English – we tease each other a lot about our "strange accents."
Sometimes a member will translate lessons, sermons, etc. that we speak into the Kamba language, and we have often wondered what ideas they actually convey in their translations. (Obviously we have no clue. Well, not many clues we should say. For example: When we teach a very serious doctrine, then the interpreter translates our words and the people laugh, we do have to wonder what was really said!)
Yesterday we did get a glimpse of what was said by an interpreter. We picked up a member brother whom we passed along the way as he was walking home from church. When he got in the back seat, two other unknown teenagers who were passing by, climbed in also (a rather usual occurrence). As we drove, Elder Blake said to the boys three different times, "Tell me where you want me to stop so you can get out." but the boys just couldn't understand. Finally the member spoke to them in his English-Kenya dialect, to help clarify the message and said: "He wants to know if you want to join the church." Sister Blake and I were so startled to hear his "translation" that we about choked on our laughter. The member was very earnest is his interpretation, and couldn't understand why we were laughing.
What we learned from this was that some of our "translators" don't understand very much of what we say either! ;-)