Mongolian Moments #7

Mongolian Moments #7

For those who follow the blog you will know that both foods mentioned in the comic strip were recently eaten by Daniel. The horse pizza Daniel and his companion made and consumed themselves without incident. The goat stomach was in the Byyz that Daniel ate at a member’s house but didn’t hold down. At the time he thought the byyz tasted different.

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Missionary Dan Email #8 from Choibalsan, Mongolia

Choibalsan sunset

Choibalsan sunset

The party looked really fun. The house looks really good too. It makes you look really rich. I haven’t seen something like that in forever. The pizza looks really good too. I like pizza.

So this week my mini missionary and I had a good week. He had been inactive for about six years or so and just barely started coming back to church. We took the opportunity for him to serve a mini mission to strengthen his testimony and get him on a mission as well. He was lots of fun to work with and had great desire to learn. The change I saw in him was incredible. Last week he was sad and not confident looking. By the end of this week he was smiling and laughing all the time. It was a great experience for both of us.

My new companion is my old companion Od Bayar. I was really surprised that I’d be with him again. He is full of energy. We worked well together so I figure president wants us together again. I am excited to be with him again, next to my trainer he is my favorite companion. He comes today by airplane.

Last week I also relearned the sign language alphabet. I learned it before, way back in my first transfer like my second day in Mongolia. I couldn’t really learn sign language well then because I didn’t know Mongolian even. Now I am picking it up fast. It is way fun to learn and really cool to talk to deaf people. They have a special spirit about them. So I’m going to keep learning, they have a class that we go to learn. I want to get good so I’m going to work hard at it.

So I can call at 6:30 pm. That will work fine. The call is limited to 40 minutes. Yes, my apartment is big, there is a kitchen, bathroom, living room, and bedroom. I wear my coat, no I’m not cold. The church is close to my house. Choibalsan is great and I love being here. OK, that answers a few of those questions. Merry Christmas!

Love Elder Willoughby.

Presented have been portions of an email from Elder Daniel Willoughby serving in the Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission. If anyone wishes to send Daniel a message, write it in the comments and I will make sure he receives it.
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Mongolian Moments #6

Mongolian Moments #6

This cartoon was made from a suggestion by Daniel. It is interesting that the names all look the same too. At least to one not acquainted with the language. I wonder what our English names look like to Mongolians. What with all those named Smith, Johnson, Williams, Jones, and Brown. And what about the multitudes called James, John, Robert, Michael, and William. And the girls are no better with Mary, Patricia, Linda, Barbara, and Elizabeth.

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Missionary Dan Email #7 from Choibalsan, Mongolia

Missionaries and branch missionaries at Choibalsan sign

Missionaries and branch missionaries at Choibalsan sign

Thanks Mom for reminding me to answer your questions. I totally forgot that there was any. There is no need to feel like you’re rambling because I really like reading what’s going on.

I got my package on December 10th. So my companion and I opened the first ten days together. We had lots of fun guessing with the scriptures. I got the tuna fish right. I even guessed it was Starkist brand or whatever its called, I can’t remember now. Thanks again.

I know that we will be calling on Christmas day for y‘all, so for me it will be the day after. It is ridiculously cheap to call from here to America. It is $2.50 for about a 3 hour phone card. Speaking of cheap the yellow jacket I modeled in the pictures was about $2.50 too. Tell me next week what time you’d like me to call and that’s when I will. Probably in the evening is best from 6 to 9 pm your time. Of course the phone call is limited to about 30 minutes so have some good questions ready.

The weather is getting colder. The thermometer I got is way cool. There is one slight problem though. It only goes to 0 degrees F. The other day it was 2 degrees. I haven’t needed to wear my big coat yet so it really isn’t that cold. As I was talking to my investigator yesterday he said right now it’s warm outside and later it will get much colder. He laughed at me when I asked if he was serious. So my thermometer won’t be able to measure the temperature here in a bit but that’s OK, it is cool to see when it is below -20 degrees C.

President Andersen wasn’t able to come here. The night before he was going to leave some problems came up. With some missionaries running away (which happens a lot so it wasn’t the main reason) and the visa problems he had to stay to attend some meetings. I’ll say a little about that later or when I call. I was able to have a phone interview with him. He said I will be staying here in Choibalsan and will most likely get a Mongolian companion. So that was exciting to hear, I really like being here.

Baptism of Munkhtushig (center).

Baptism of Munkhtushig (center)

The assistants, Sister Andersen, and the new couple that will be staying in Choibalsan came. The old couple left with my companion really early Saturday morning. We had zone conference which was way different as there are only 8 missionaries out here. We cooked up some chili for all of us to eat and it turned out way good. In the picture I’m frying up the meat.

Right now I have a mini missionary for my companion. He is actually my new member who was baptized last summer. He is 21 and preparing to go on a mission when he reaches his member year mark. I really like doing work with him and he could almost be a missionary right now. Mongolian missionaries have tons of opportunities to prepare for their missions so they come out really prepared and ready. I’ll get my new companion next week at transfers.

The 12 year old is my recent baptism and the other is the one baptized Friday. It was Elder Armstrong’s very last day of doing missionary work and he was able to see Munkhtushig get baptized. Surprisingly to me he asked me to baptize him. It was great. On Sunday he received the Holy Ghost and as he was receiving it I felt a warm burning feeling. It was neat to recognize that was him receiving the Holy Ghost to help and guide him in his life. I know there is great power that comes from the priesthood and it greatly blesses our lives.

Anyway I’m out of time for today. Thanks for all the emails.

Love Elder Willoughby.

Daniel wearing his new yellow jacket.

Daniel wearing his new yellow jacket

Elder Armstrong and Daniel

Elder Armstrong and Daniel

Daniel preparing chili for zone conference

Daniel preparing chili for zone conference

Elder Armstrong (left) and Daniel (right) and the baptism of Jargal Caikan

Elder Armstrong (left) and Daniel (right) at the baptism of Jargal Caikan

Daniel opening his Christmas packages.

Daniel opening his Christmas packages

Daniel opening days one to ten

Elder Armstrong opening days one to ten

Presented have been portions of an email from Elder Daniel Willoughby serving in the Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission. If anyone wishes to send Daniel a message, write it in the comments and I will make sure he receives it.
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Mongolian Moments #5

Mongolian Moments #5

I was raised in socialist England and Santa Claus was mostly referred to as Father Christmas. Father Christmas is used in many other English speaking countries. A similar figure with the same name (in other languages) exists in several other countries, including France (Père Noël), Spain (Papá Noel), Portugal (Pai Natal), Italy (Babbo Natale), and Romania (Moş Crăciun). In past centuries, the English Father Christmas was also known as Old Father Christmas, Sir Christmas, and Lord Christmas.

Since emigrating to the United States all I hear is Santa and I find most people unfamiliar with Father Christmas.

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Missionary Dan Email #6 from Choibalsan, Mongolia

The house looks really comfortable. Thanks for sending pictures. I liked the comics too. Good job Dad :). Congratulations on losing weight too. That graph looks really fancy. I think I have gained a few pounds since I’ve been here, but there is really no way to tell.

Daniel wearing someone else's glasses.

Daniel wearing someone else's glasses.

Jargal Caikhan got baptized this Saturday. It was really good. He has been an investigator for quite some time. He is 12 years old and his aunt who he lives with is a returned missionary.

The church opened this week so we got to have church. The branch president forgot his paper when he went to announce newly arrived missionaries, so he didn’t even get close to saying my name right. It was funny. Later as I bore my testimony I said a little joke how Mongolians can’t say Willoughby at all. That made them laugh. I need to remember to record them trying to say it, it is funny. I have already met a lot of church members, so it didn’t seem like I was a new missionary in the branch. Church was really great; my other new member who is 60 years old received the Priesthood. That was a really good thing that happened and it made me happy.

We worked hard to find new investigators this week. We didn’t have much success until Sunday. I met a really nice person on the street earlier and he said we could come by. He talked to us for quite a while. He lives in the countryside though so we may not get to teach him that much. It is always exciting to find new investigators.

It’s not hard to deal with the cold really. You wear a coat and its fine. Later this month is when it really gets cold as the 9 nines starts. That will be fun, I’ll probably wear my bigger coat.

Well that’s all I have for this week. The computer’s USB isn’t working so I’ll send some pictures next week.

Love Elder Willoughby.

Daniel by the river in Choibalsan

Daniel by the river in Choibalsan


Presented have been portions of an email from Elder Daniel Willoughby serving in the Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission. If anyone wishes to send Daniel a message, write it in the comments and I will make sure he receives it.

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Mongolian Moments #4

Mongolian Moments #4

Uuz

Uuz is Mutton Back that is stewed in one piece. A well fed sheep will collect substantial fat in the lower back and in the tail as an energy reserve. This fat is the main component of Uuz.

Khuushuur

Large filled pockets that are deep fried in mutton fat or Khuushuur.

Buuz

Buuz are small filled pockets, cooked under steam, and usually have an opening at the top.

Daniel got quite sick eating Byyz, which sounds like it is Buuz, but who knows?

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Missionary Dan Email #5 from Choibalsan, Mongolia

Daniel (fifth left) at a couple missionary's home for Thanksgiving

Daniel (fifth left) at a couple missionary's home for Thanksgiving

This week was full of adventures. We had a wonderful Thanksgiving. All the missionaries went to Elder and Sister Anderson’s house to the dinner. They are the couple that is assigned to our area. We had chicken instead of turkey. The stuffing was really good. That is always my favorite and we had some great pumpkin pie.

The house looks way awesome! Congratulations I hope all goes well. It is exciting that Steven and Ada are having another kid. They could have a third one on the way before I get home :). Congratulations a second time.

The sisters apartment lock broke and they weren’t able to get in their house. So they had to take over our apartment while we slept at the district leader’s house. We fixed their lock today so we get to be at home again. It was really strange to find a long black hair on my sheets.

Daniel with a member called Purvee

Daniel with a member called Purvee

The church was closed again so we took the sacrament to the members again. We did it 9 times to 58 people. Hopefully the church will be open next week. The Branch President returned from his temple trip so we got to meet him. He is young and really cool. The members are still very thankful to receive the sacrament.

I mistook the words “work cow” for “husband” at one of the member’s houses. She was asking if we could give the left over blessed bread to her husband. She said, “He eats vegetables, fruit, paper, meat, just about anything. I thought for a moment and it really didn’t make sense to me. So I asked her, “Your husband?” That was funny, we laughed very hard.

I got the Primary letters last week. The package will be coming with President when he makes his trip out here for zone conference on December 11. So I’ll get it then. Also that is when my companion leaves. When I get my new companion I’ll be to a total of 11. That is quite a few for only being half way. Maybe soon I’ll have a companion for more than one half transfer. Anyway thanks for the all letters. They are way fun to read.

Love Elder Willoughby.

Presented have been portions of an email from Elder Daniel Willoughby serving in the Mongolia Ulaanbaatar Mission. If anyone wishes to send Daniel a message, write it in the comments and I will make sure he receives it.

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Mongolian Moments #3

Mongolian Moments #3
Daniel and the other missionaries destined for Mongolia stayed longer in the Missionary Training Center (MTC) while waiting for visas. Then Daniel and a few others were sent to the Georgia Atlanta Mission to tract and wait for visas. He actually went straight to Alabama. Three weeks later the coveted visas arrived and he was on his way to Mongolia.

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