Monday, December 26, 2016

Weel 41: Merry Christmas!!

Sup Fam!

What a stinkin awesome Christmas is was being able to talk to all of my family!! Aww it was seriously the best and recharged my batteries until Mother's Day! Zimbabwe doesn't really celebrate christmas WHATSOEVER. Okay I take that back. Everyone drinks and drinks and drinks until they just about die so there's been lots of drunk people everywhere so that's entertaining. OUR SHOWER WORKS AGAIN so that's a Christmas miracle. Things are doing oookay this side.

The area is doing really well! We were able to baptize 3 this weekend in our brand this bright blue baptismal font haha. It was awesome! Two of the little girls were 9 and bore really sweet testimonies afterward. Blessing, who is 17, also bore a powerful testimony of the Book of Mormon and the Restoration. We were supposed to have a wedding as well, but then the wife left her ID in kamusha (the rural areas) so it will have to wait for next week. Still took wedding pics, though.

So we met this really amazing golden investigator who was a referral from a missionary I served with who just came back. His name is Lancelot and he is so prepared for the gospel! We did a BRT with him last Sunday and gave him the Restoration pamphlet and asked him to read and pray to know of it's truthfulness. Well we went back this week and taught the whole Restoration, and bore our testimonies that if he prays sincerely, he will know that our message is true. He said, "I will do that, but you know, I think I know it's already true. I read just one page of this pamphlet and then decided to pray, and I felt so much peace. I can't describe it in any other way except for peace. That's why I already know it's true." YES!! It was so great and we were so happy. I LOVE seeing investigators coming to a knowledge of the truthfulness of our message, and being able to recognize the Holy Ghost!! Lancelot will be getting baptized on 7 January and I am so stinkin excited. 

The rains are still coming down and it's leaving our areas green and beautiful. What a blessing it is to be a missionary in the best mission on this earth! I am so grateful to be able to serve my Savior and to be on His errand. I LOVE being a missionary! 

"For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace"

Love, Sister Richards 

packages for days. thank you family!!!!!!


Brother Blessing

Sister Patience

Sister Samantha

wedding pictures for the wedding that didn't actually happen

our zone leader's truck got stuck so they showed up to the chapel like this 

Merry Christmas Eve from KFC

There's a Santa on that coke!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Week 40: Goodbye Harare, Hello Mutare (I wish)

Hello my people!

What a crazy but wonderful week. Today we got HOT WATER BACK HALLELUJAH AMEN! It's been two weeks too long, shamwaris. Too long. But it's back so everything is okay! On Wednesday we had 8 fall throughs IN A ROW, but ended the night with some killer pizza to make it all better. 

We got to go to Mutare to flood the place with the gospel (the people there are convinced we're satanists) and it was so stinkin fun! All of the Harare missionaries, so like 60 of us, got to go down and we just contacted for two days until we died. It was amazing!! We had to wake up at 2:30 in the morning to leave for Mutare but it was so worth it. We also had our Christmas devotional there and it was so powerful. Such a great weekend. Mutare is SO BEAUTIFUL and it seriously was just a blast to be there. We gave a billion Light the World pass along cards out and it was the best. I've started praying for next transfer if you know what I mean...

We're having a wedding this weekend and hopefully four baptisms! These past couple weeks have been the calm before the storm. The baptisms are about to come! W'eve found some really great new investigators this week who are just so prepared for the gospel. Heavenly Father prepares His children, all we have to do is find them!

I was touched by an experience we had last night with an investigator. We were teaching one of our investigator's mother for the first time, and happened to be discussing on the Book of Mormon. Tinashe, our investigator, has been praying to know if it's truthfulness. He handed the book to his Mom and said, "This book is the truth. I know it." There's nothing I love more than seeing investigators gaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon and then sharing it with others!

This week as I was reading in the Book of Mormon, I was touched by Helaman 5. As Nephi and Lehi were being persecuted, they were surrounded by a pillar of fire so they could not be touched. Then this voice comes from heaven right after the earth has shaken and a cloud of darkness overshadow them. The voice tells the people to stop persecuting the servants of God, and it did pierce them to the very soul. Then Aminadab sees Nephi and Lehi conversing with angels and the Lamanites ask Aminadab what they have to do to get the cloud of darnkess away from them. Aminadab tells them to repent and cry unto the Lord. Verse 42: "And it came to pass that they all did begin to cry unto the voice of him who had shake the earth; yea they did cry even until the cloud of darkness was dispersed." I thought it was so cool that the same one who had shaken the earth was the same being they turned to for deliverance. It reminds me of the scripture that says the Lord chastens those whom He loves. Sometimes God has to cause our earths to shake a little bit and even tumble for us to turn to Him. The same being who caused the earth to shake is the one who has power to deliver us. He shakes our worlds because He loves us!

Let us all remember the Savior in this Christmas season (even if it's 80 degrees outside) because He is the reason we are here! Love all you guys AND FAMILY CAN'T WAIT TO SEE YOUR CUTE FACES ON SUNDAY!!

Love, Sister Richards 

sister beckstead and me taking selfies for days

pictures from Mutare

mbare district

roasted chibage!


stripes for days

in one of our areas. so stinkin pretty!

us being awake at FOUR OCLOCK IN THE MORNING to leave for mutare. wow. 

obvious i slept for the whole 4 hour car ride until the elders started singing "we are daughters of God' at the top of their lungs. doesn't even make sense. please. 


the hotel

me hiking up a mountain in mutare

 plowed a field. shared the message of the restoration. good stuff.​

Wednesday, December 14, 2016


Hello my people!

That's right, I'M HALFWAY!!! Can you even believe it?! I seriously feel like I've been here for 2 weeks, but also 2 years! Time is flying but wow, 9 months down and I LOVE ZIMBABWE. 

So this week was crazy. We went five days without water and it was absolute torture. You can pretty much do NOTHING without water. Then our house flooded for a second but now it's okay. Also the shower that I was so jazzed about broke this week. It was a nice one shower that I took, but back to buckets we go. 

White washing is an adventure. Shamwari. If those previous two sisters were in Harare, my wrath would've been upon them during weekly planning on Thursday, but fortunately for them, they are far away. They left nothing in the area book! How are you supposed to white wash when you have nothing in the area book?! Oh, that's right, YOU CAN'T. We're figuring it out, though. Iri bo. My companion is awesome!! She's a hoot and a half. A two man house is totally weird but it's been fun. She's a contacting queen and we are just laughing and laughing and having and great time getting lost together. 

Sooo yesterday, Brother Faison, who Sister Namugenyi and I contacted a couple weeks ago, showed up to sacrament meeting 100% completely DRUNK. He had his restoration pamphlet stuffed in his suit coat pocket and he was just drunk. It was absolutely hysterical. We were singing the opening hymn, and he turns around and in his drunk whisper shouting voice says, "I kindly ask you to help me figure out what's going on" hahaha so I moved my pen along with the words and he started figuring it out. Have you ever heard a drunk man try to whisper? Yeah it doesn't work. Then we sing the sacrament hymn, I Stand all Amazed. The guy was feeling the spirit hard core. He kept putting his hand over his heart and lifting up his arms to praise hallelujah. It was hysterical. Sister Talemwa and I were almost crying. Then the speaker spoke on Resurrection. He turned around about halfway through the first talk and said, "There's life after death?!?!!?" in his whisper shouting voice. Yes brother faison there is but shhh!! And then after church, he was just talking to us and was so upset because his wife didn't come to church with him (we think he came straight from the beer hall). "Sisters, I kindly ask you to help me, I just want to be with my wife forever!!! Why won't she come to these programs with me?!?!" Apparently he was really touched by sacrament meeting, knowing he could be with his wife forever. It was heart warming, yet hysterical. Every time my companion and I ask a question, we always begin with "I kindly ask you..."

We're having a nice time exploring new areas! One area called Cornerstore is turning out to be our favorite. Tichaona, one of our investigators there, is a dwarf and has a really difficult time walking. Yesterday was so stinkin cold because of the rain, and he walked about 2 and a half hours to church by himself. The rest of his family couldn't come and he walked the whole way alone. I continue to be amazed at the dedication of the people of Zimbabwe. They are incredible and I feel so blessed to be serving them.

And on service, Light the World is amazing! We're not able to do a lot of things because we live in Africa, but even just small acts of service for those around you makes all the difference. In this first week with my new companion, I've been focusing on trying to serve her. We have our differences, but you develop so much love for someone as you serve them. Let's Light the World with the light of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

And finally, stay tuned for my 9 MONTH PREGNANCY PICTURES!!!!!!!!!!!

Love, Sister Richards 

welcome to our new area! dombo after dombo after dombo (rock)

doing yoga on rocks. powerful.


that rock out there is called domboramwari, meaning rock of God. Apparently Jesus walked on the rock or something. 

on top of the world!

me walking to heaven.

can you see the madzi babas in the distance? they wear all white and sit in the sun for hours upon hours upon hours listening to their pastors scream shona at them. rain or shine they are there. talk about dedication. 

my companion found some veggies growing in our yard (yikes) and made some sadza and called it good for lunch. it was a miracle i got that stuff down. 

peanut butter and veggies! actually pretty tasty.

9 months down!! Enough time to grow a baby!
(we had way too much fun with these)

9 months down!! Enough time to grow a baby!
(we had way too much fun with these)

9 months down!! Enough time to grow a baby!
(we had way too much fun with these)

9 months down!! Enough time to grow a baby!
(we had way too much fun with these)

9 months down!! Enough time to grow a baby!
(we had way too much fun with these)

Do I have the pregnancy glow??


sister talemwa, my beloved companion. how cute is she??

sister mpiyakhe. I love this girl!!

celebratory lunch at this cafe in borrowdale where all the rich people live. those nachos were incredible. 

Monday, December 5, 2016

Week 38: Are You Not Flattering?

Hi Family and Friends!

Craziness happening here in Zimbabwe! Transfers were this week and I'm staying here in Epworth, but we're taking over the other sister's area! THAT'S THREE AREAS! One companionship!! What the!! I'm getting a new companion, her name is Sister Talemwa. She's from uganda and I've heard really good things about her!

Since we have so much area to cover, we have about 25 people on date for baptism. TWENTY FIVE. We are going to be working like CRAZY these next few weeks and it's going to be amazing. I seriously cannot wait. Plus we get the car back to HOLLA. 

We found some really amazing people this week. One of them being Brother Gandiwa. We contacted him a couple weeks ago, did a BRT with him last week, and were able to teach the Restoration this week. It was amazing! He asked a question of why God only calls one prophet at a time, and my answer made him fall off his chair laughing. It was hysterical. "Brother Gandiwa, what would've happened if there was 50 Noahs at one time? Noah #1 would be like hey get on my ark and Noah #48 would be like no get on my ark, and then everyone would've been confused". Well this is not the first time I've used this example, but people don't usually laugh THAT hard. HE DIED LAUGHING. Which means the rest of us died laughing. It was so funny, but he got the point. At the end of the first vision, we asked him how he felt knowing about Joseph Smith. He said, "It sounds familiar to me. Something about this is ringing true." I can't wait to go back this week to meet his family and hear about his experience praying about the Book of Mormon!

Obviously Nobert is still the best human ever. He read in the Book of Mormon about the beattitudes this week, and had a question about meekness. We turned to the Index so he could find other words that were similar (gentle, humble, etc.) I said, "Nobert, I would say you're a meek person. You are very kind and gentle" to which he said, very seriously, "Sister Richards, are you not flattering?" HAHA WHAT! Me flattering at 67 year old man, please. Hahaha he's the best. 

 My study this week was focused on the Savior. I've been studying a lot in the New Testament and Jesus the Christ to understand the magnitude of His birth. I came across something that I absolutely love. I noticed that each time the angel appeared to someone, be it Zacharias, Mary, the shepherds, anyone, their first words were "Fear not", or in other words "have faith". Obviously this was a pretty out of world experience for all of them, and the first words were so personal and so comforting: Fear Not. I would like to think that when meeting the Savior or our Heavenly Father, or maybe a messenger of them, those would be the first words we would hear as well. They would invite us to lay our fears aside and to have faith!

Well, I cannot wait for this transfer to begin! Being in a two man house will be a weird change, but I'm so excited for the work that's in front of us. 

Zimbabwe is hot, mission is cool.

Love, Sister Richards 

We had Thanksgiving this week. It was awesome.