Elder Palmer (back row, 6th from left) is serving in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kinshasa mission for
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

Eric returned home on August 27th, 2011!!!!!

He was transferred to Yaounde, Cameroon on August 13th, 2010.

Links listed on the left are from the senior couples and Mission President!

Comments in italics are clarifications from Mom.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Eric's email of March 12th, 2011

         So this week we changed p-day to Saturday, because we wanted to do a pig roast today.  So that's why I’m emailing you today instead of Thursday, but that's just for this week.  They are roasting the pig right now at the apartement building, plus they got 4 chickens.  Its a lot of work.  I’ll send a picture, plus lots of other ones, since I forgot again last week, sorry Mom.

A pig on a stick, Elder Tingey and Elder Palmer in his usual "thumbs up" pose
        Things are still going well.  We got transfer info on Wednesday.  I didn't get transferred, neither did Elder Tingey.  So we are going to do a 3rd transfer together, and this will be my sixth transfer in this sector.  But I did get called to be zone leader for Yaoundé.  So far the responsibilities that I know of are sending in numbers, some baptismal interviews, attend district meetings in the zone, and set a good example of course.  There are some other things that I forgot right now, but I’ll ask President Headlee because he is coming next week.  And it also says that the zone leaders have a meeting every first Tuesday of the month at noon with the mission president.  But, I don't think they are going to fly me down to Kinshasa for that.
                One of our new investigators is named Nina, she is the daughter of Soeur Salomé, who has been a member for about a year now.  We are still at the beginning with her, but she seems ready to do the things necessary to receive an answer to her prayers and receive the blessings of the gospel.  She has told us that she has lots of problems, but hasn't told us what they are at all, but she wants to know how to resolve them.  But the best thing here is helping families come into the Church together.  She hast kept all of her commitments so far, so its looking good.
                Another new family, which was a coordonnée from Blaise’s younger sister Blandine, is also starting to progress well.  They are from the same village as Blaise’s family, and on Wednesday we had a really great experience with them.  We were waiting for the father of the family, Daniel, to come out, because he had been resting his back that he had injured the day before lifting something heavy.  He couldn't even really sit down straight.  So Elder Tingey and I decided to teach the Restoration and such and put a special emphasis on the Priesthood.    So we taught everything and such, and we finished by reading James 5:14-15, which talks about blessing the sick.  And so after we read that, the father said, «you better not leave today without giving me one of those blessings ! »  So we did, and after the blessing they had some more questions and we probably talked for about 15 or 20 more minutes, and at the end brother Daniel gave us a testimony, as he called it.  He looked a lot more comfortable than before and said much of the pain was gone and that he felt a big difference than how he felt earlier.
                The same day, Wednesday, we had a very, very unique experience with Soeur Melanie.  When we got to her quartier, her husband was leaving, but he told us that his wife was feeling sick.  When we got there, Souer Patricia, a member, was already there talking a bit with her, but Melanie was not doing well at all.  We talked for just a little bit, but realized she wasn't in a very good state to talk that day.  So we asked if we could give her a blessing and she said yes.  So we gave her a blessing, and right after her blessing, something that I have never experienced before happened.  I’m not going to write exactly what happened in this email, its all in my journal in detail.  It was something very good.  I’ll just say now that le ministère d’anges (ministering of angels) is something real.  Now she is getting ready for baptism and I see some good things ahead.
                One of the members we are trying to reactivate, Soeur Melanie (a different Melanie of course), gave birth on Wednesday, and we saw her new daughter on Thursday.  Its her second daughter, she is named Calin, something like that.  It is pronounced Calving without the « v ».
                Three of Blaise’s younger siblings are getting baptized a week from today : Rigobert, Melchior, and Queentine.  And this time the timing worked out so that the father will get off a bit early Saturday afternoon and will have a day off on Sunday so that he can see their confirmation.  And this morning I went with Elder Prince to go learn how to make Eru.  I also learned how to spell it correctly, with a u, not an o.  Here are all the ingredients : waterleaf,(spinach) cow skin (and meat and/intestines if you choose so), eru (looks like grass), fish that has been dried and then smoked, seasoning cubes (normal flavor), onions, water, piment (also learned this week that it is not pima), shrimp (optional), salt, some shrimp flavored seasoning cube, and red oil (a lot).  Maybe you can imagine that a bit better now.  Blaise’s mom, Sister Victorine, makes the best eru I’ve eaten, so hopefully I won't mess it up too bad.  And I also learned how to make fufu.
                All right, I’m going to send some photos now.
Je vous aime,
-          Elder Eric Palmer

(To Mom:)

(How much is gas in Cameroon?  It is $3.31 here in VA, much more in CA where Aunt Karen lives.) 
I will look this week to see how much gas costs here.

If you haven't sent the package yet, Elder Tingey and I could each use a "Reese's FastBreak".

(What are bobos and where do you wear them?)  I think you actually spell it "Boubou", and I don't have any pictures still.  You where them when you live in Africa.  (I meant where on your body do you wear them, not in which country!)
 OK, this is a picture of some men wearing Boubous.

(Have you had Ero since you over-ate it?)  The first time I had eru since my last overdose was today, when I went and learned to make eru.

(I noticed you were wearing yellow shoes in one of your hiking pictures.  When did you get those shoes?)  Those yellow shoes are that color because of Yaoundé's red dirt.  I think they are more orange.  I bought them in Pointe-Noire for running, because the only other shoes I had were hurting.  These ones are starting to fall apart, but I think they will make it to the end of the mission.

Je t'aime,
- Elder Eric Palmer

To Dad:

Well president will be coming next week and on Tuesday we will get interviewed.  Oh, and I completely forgot!  Maybe you already know this, but the new mission president for here got announced, it will be President Jameson.  You should be able to read about him in the Church news somewhere.

So the one thing that I am very confident and feel good about is staying in Richmond that first semester, and working and doing some J-Sarge.

Je t'aime,
- Elder Eric Palmer

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