As we transitioned into our divided area this week we faced some challenges but also some great blessings.
It was difficult to have as many lessons this week as were getting last transfer, but we were also blessed with several new investigators and families. But the biggest challenge this week, was acquiring marriage documentation for two couples to be married in the upcoming weeks. The documentation process is extremely complicated and expensive, and provides a significant roadblock towards baptism as nearly all couples are not legally married. To open the marriage process you need three main docs (at least 20 days before the date):1. B.I. (ID card) which requires:
a. Registration (Cedulla)
b. Birth Certificate (can only be acquired at the place of birth) 2. Another Birth certificate 3. Attestado which requires:
a. Pay your annual taxes
b. Declaration of “Bairro” or neighborhood
Almost all the docs have to be handled at different locations around the city, and take hours to days to acquire. So this week we have been working every morning to make sure two of our couples completed this process so they could open the process for marriage. After having roadblocks nearly every step of the way, we finally opened the process for one couple, Angela and Agostinho this morning, and will open another process soon. I could spend pages on the struggles we went through this week, but now that it is opened, I can breathe a sigh of relief and give many a prayer of thanks.
Otherwise this week…. We went to Maputo for another training (and got quite lost). We had a service project cleaning the cemetery with the Ramo (branch). I had a very strange experience with a lady “adoring” my bag. She flipped when I asked if she was drunk…learned my lesson there. And we got two new Elders in the house this week, Elder Williams and Elder Thomas. The eight of us have a blast.