Serving February 4, 2015 - January 16, 2017

Serving February 4, 2015 - January 16, 2017



Monday, December 12, 2016

The week of Traveling and Conferences began... (12-12-16)

So this was a crazy week, I will see if I can get it all in this one email.  

So on monday as you know everything was nuts, I am still recovering from that one haha...  Then on tuesday we had the privilege of picking up the new missionaries from the airport.  That was a ton of fun.  It was too bad their plane actually landed on time so that was a miracle, except their bags all got lost in the layover, and so we thought the plane hadn't got there yet, but it turns out they were trying to sort the bag issue out but they only speak MTC portugues.  Thankfully airport regulations are a lot less stringent here so Elder Payne and I were able to go in and help them out, it took like an hour, but thankfully all of their bags ended up making it over the course of the week.  Tuesday Elder Payne and I ate at this Italian restaurant out of desperation.  We were hungry and it was late and we had a super bad "what the heck?" kind of attitude and we went to this restaurant.  I think it was my favorite in all of Mozambique.  They also put man-bibs on us to not let our shirts get dirty, haha.  Wednesday we were trying to get everything all together and just get to the area, but everything was working against us.  It was the same story on Thursday and Friday.  On saturday morning we got up and drove to swaziland.  That was fun, we took a "pit stop" at the animal park in Hlane (Sh-lawn-ee) where we saw an Elephant, 3 rhinos, a few hippos, impalas, and a komodo dragon.  That was super cool.  We just drove up on this elephant, it was like 5 feet from the car.  I was getting out of the car when the elephant, took a defensive pose and so I got right back in and drove away quick.  Then I leaned out the window to take a picture of a rhino.  It was on the road and when it heard us coming it turned a round and squared up.  I was a little nervous, but it was soooooooo Cool.  We went to the swazi district christmas party when we got here, and have been dividing with the missionaries.  It has been a good week.  I got pink eye though, so I have been in my glasses all week, that sucked really bad in the rain yesterday.  But my eyes are feeling better.  

The sad part of the week was getting a call on saturday from Nampula.  I was told that my recent-convert Sergio had been hit by a car and passed away.  That was pretty tough.  But in the same moment I couldn't help but feel gratitude for having been able to help him recieve the ordinances of baptism, I am sure he is up there in Spirit Paradise, getting involved with missionary work.  I am so grateful for the knowledge of the Plan of Salvation.  It turns these otherwise impossible trials into experiences that strengthen our testimonies and bring us closer to the Lord.  That is what I teach. That is what I know. I know that we lived with Him and that if we do the right things on this earth we will return to live in His presence again.  The Holy Spirit has confirmed that to my heart, and I believe and cherish that knowledge.  God lives and He loves us.  He sent His son Jesus Christ to redeem us from the fall, and I know that families can be sealed together for all eternity through the power of the Holy Priesthood.  I Love and Miss you all.

Elder Anthony James Holt  

Man Bib!
Italian Food - Yum!

Elephant Sighting...
Rhino Sighting...
Komono Dragon Sighting...
Hippo Sighting...
This place in Elder Copitsky's area called zambodes.  It looks like the pacific northwest mixed with hawaii.  There was rain, and this little creek reminded me of Bridge to Terabithia and I got sad because it is a sad movie/book.  But it made me excited to go hiking in normal clothes.  We were slipping all around in the mud, haha.
Elder Holt

That was a long day... (12-5-16)

So yeah, it is a lot later than normal.  I am ok, I just had a lot of things to do this week, and a ton to do today.  Today was the first day of the transfer.  I guess you could say it is the beginning of the end.  I will be staying here in Chamanculo B.  I will be staying with Elder Payne as well.  I am super excited.  It was kind of a big transfer and we had a ton of people coming up from Swaziland.  So Elder Payne and I got the chapa and drove them all around.  I thought for sure it would be quick, but it seems like no matter what we did, the later we ended up being.  We also have 4 Elders up from swaziland working on their visas, so we will be working with them until they get them, and then they will go back to swaziland.  Hopefully it is all done by wednesday.  This week we have been trying our best to close out the month, and the transfer.  It is always stressful when we have a months end, or a transfers end, and this time they ended up being on the same week, so that was pretty darn rough.  I sure would like to sleep for like a week straight, but my body just doesn't let me.  

We had a good month, and now we are getting prepped for Zone Conferences.  This week we have been trying to help our investigators get all the way to baptism.  They are close, but still have a little bit to go.  Hopefully by months end we will finish them out and then we can get some more.  During the week we had one of the missionaries that works on Catembe, it is the are on the other side of the Maputo Bay and you have to take a ferry to get there.  He brought us some fresh shrimp, we paid him for it.  It was like 4 dollars for a kilo.  There were a bunch of little ones, but there were also a few big ones.  I deveined and prepped them all, and we cooked them up.  They were a little too small to set up to grill.  So I got thinking, and I made a shrimp scampi.  I don't know if it was an actual shrimp scampi, but that is what we called it, and that is what it tasted like, and I love Italian food, and seafood, so it was a good lunch.  I will try to send some pictures of the process.  But other than that we just worked and worked and worked.  I am tired and have little time.  But I LOVE YOU ALL.  Happy Holidays.

Elder Anthony Holt

Happy Late Thanksgiving.... (11-28-16)

So this week was thanksgiving, and that is cool.  I am so thankful for all of you that write me, and those of you that love me but dont write me...   This week we celebrated thanksgiving and it was super good.  But I will get there.  We had some meetings on Tuesday getting prepared for our Mission Leadership Council, those were good, but it was still better to get to the area and work.  On wednesday we had no time in the area as we had to prepare for thanksgiving.  Elder Payne, Elder Baker, and I went to President and Sister Koch's house with 5 kgs of flour, 3 pumpkins, a ton of butter and other ingredients, and started cooking.  Elder Payne made Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, and at my suggestion used heavy whipping cream instead of milk.  Elder Baker made some super good crescent rolls, and I made Pie, Pumpkin Pie, actually 8 pies.  It was a good time.  We started from scratch, I cleaned the pumpkin, baked it, took the flesh out, and pureed it.  Sister Koch has a meat grinder and it worked very well to puree pumpkin.  Then we got to the tedious work, rolling crust, baking the crust and then the pies.  It took so long.  And wednesday was sister kochs birthday so we made her a video and the sisters made cupcakes, I think she was very surprised and got a good laugh out of it.  And then when we finished we went to the airport to pick up the Elders from Beira that were coming for leadership council.  It was very thanksgivingish, as the zone leaders are all good friends coming down for the holidays.  After that we went back to the kochs, where they made us Tacos, I LOVE TACOS!!!! The next day was the council, it went well and was followed by the dinner.  Elder Payne and I presented on becoming more like the savior, through learning of him, and emulating him.  The pumpkin pie was a hit, President wasn't too happy that it took so long to cook, but after having some the next day, he let me know that the extra time was worth the taste, so it was good.  Then this weekend we started getting ready for christmas time, and our zone conference that is coming up in a few weeks.  We are doing well and I am loving the work.  Sorry, I was so busy baking that i didn't really get any pictures, but I think my mom got some from sister koch, so she can attach them on here.  I Love you all and hope you have a great week, and Happy December.  

Elder Anthony Holt

Sorry, this is short (11-21-16)

Sorry, I have nothing to share about the week basically.  It was very routine, and I am just not sure what to write.  The only thing that I can think of was our activity on Saturday.  The stake just got a new building built and as such decided to have an open house.  Now the stake doesn't really know what an open house entails.  they were planning like hour long presentations and such and I thought it was crazy.  Like lets have a 15 minute guided tour of the chapel, and get them in and out in as little time as necessary, let them feel the spirit and get there phone number.  but that didn't happen, so oh well.  The good news was, at the park next door, there was a huge activity sponsored by the government, so we just went out and started telling people, hey, since your here come see the chapel, and they came, in droves.  At the peak, it started raining, and some 200 people ran to the chapel for cover, we got them all in there, plus the 100 or so that were already there, and then we sang hymns, for 30 minutes until the rain passed.  We had over a thousand people come through the chapel in just a day, and took over 180 contacts, it has truly been a miracle.  I am excited to see the fruits of the effort.  

Sorry I have no pictures,

Elder Anthony Holt

Dear All, We had a Baptism (11-14-16)

So as you read, we had  a baptism this last weekend.  It was pretty nice.  Rita and Cidalia were baptized.  They are the neice and daughter of a recent convert family that my old companion Elder Combs found and baptized a few months ago.  We were excited, and I think they were happy too.  We combined with the other Elders and the Sisters, so there were 5 people in total.  It was really good.  We have been enjoying the time to get work done, and we are trying to find more families that will progress.  On Saturday we walked with President and that was really cool.  We took him to visit two families.  Joaquim and Lidia, who we have been teaching for a few weeks now.  Then afterward we to visit.  Roby and Edilson, we found Edilson a few weeks ago, but he introduced us to his dad a few days ago, so we taught his Dad the restoration.  Both families came to church the next day and participated actively in the classes.  It was the Primary Program.  As much as that is a good thing, and normally people would love it, it is a day that we missionaries dread for our investigators.  I was just sitting there praying that somehow among the yelling kids and excessive feedback they would feel the spirit.  I think they did though, and It is a miracle that we see almost weekly.  Sacrament rarely runs perfectly nor smoothly nor reverently, but somehow God works his little miracles and the Investigators are blessed with a pouring out of the spirit.  

I got to drive through T-3 this week as we needed to deliver something to the Elders out there.  It was super strange to go back to that old house.  It has been over a year and a half since I left that house, and even more since I first got there.  It is crazy how much every thing seemed so familiar and so close, while it has been so long.  I miss those days.  As the mission goes on you start to miss less your family and the things before the mission, and you start to miss parts of your mission.  It was in T3, Magoanine,and Matola that I learned how to be a missionary, where I learned how how to love this people.  It is where I came to KNOW the truth of what we teach, and they are places that changed my life.  I believe those areas to be sacred ground.  Anything good that came from my mission, anything good I did, all the success I had in Nampula, it was built in the forges of those areas.  I can't count how many times I wanted to give up, and just care less, how many times I got my hopes up super high for a family just to have them come crashing down within a few days, nor how many people that I met that had a profound influence on my mission and therefore my life.  That is a land of Miracles.  I got emotional just driving through those places.  It is interesting how this hard nosed, stubborn, dry-eyed boy, got so emotional at just seeing places.  I am going to be a wreck when I have to say goodbye.   But I am not thinking too much about that right now.  I just love the mission so much.  If any of you who are reading this are considering a mission, but are unsure, or scared, my advice is JUST DO IT (don't tell Nike I said that).  The mission is the hardest thing you can imagine, but you will never do anything more valuable with 18-24 months of your life.  You don't have to be perfect, I am not, not even close, but my Master is, and He will what He did for me for you.  Probably more, seeing as I don't think any of you are as stubborn as I am.  But we need you, and you need the mission, so come.  I love this work, I love this people, and I love the Lord.  I also love all of you.


Elder Anthony Holt

Big Skrabdawg and the Skronies, at it again.... (11-7-16)

So like this has been a phenomenal week. It all started with us moving back to our normal house, that is where the subject line comes from.  We are living with Elder Watteyne (From Cache Valley) and Elder Skraba (From Curitiba Brazil, but basically an american).  And they are our bros.  We have the squad name Skrabdawg and the Skronies, so we are legit....  What else can I say?...   We have got some mad work done, and had a couple baptisms set in our lap.  So we will have two baptisms next week.  On Friday we had a breakfast/study with President and Sister Koch, it was super cool.  We talked about leaving a summer cottage in babylon, and how we need to avoid doing so.  A super funny, but really sad moment of the week, was when we show up to drop one of our investigators that wasn't progressing, and what was she listening to, "Say something I'm giving up on you..."  Elder Payne and I got a good laugh at how appropriate it was.  Other than that, we have been working with all the time we have.  I have been helping Elder Payne to get used to driving stick, so that is fun.  Also we have just had the Classics stuck in our head ALL WEEK LONG!!!!!!!!!!!  It is driving me nuts.  This morning was Johnny Cash's "Folsom Prison Blues," the other day The Eagles, "Take it Easy."  It is a little distracting, but we only get distracted in distractable moments, haha.  I Love Mozambique, have I told you all that?  It is the best place ever.  I am just super happy with what is happening in our area, it is raining right now, so we will go do some baguncas and that will be super fun.  But I love you all.  And we saw Flamingos on the beach.  I will send some pics.

The Flamingos and Me at the Beach,
Our truck, we named her Jezebel

Our Jesus walls, I started a trend, Sorry mom and grandma, customs made me unwrap the gifts so I just have been using them...

This was one of the most exhausting weeks of my life, but I love it...

So it's pretty early, I have had to stay at the office the last week, (I will get to that later, but because of that, we have computers right here, and we have stuff to do, so I will just do email right now.  I hope my mom gets to sleep soon, because she rights my email right before bed, and I still haven't gotten it, haha.  But speaking of my angel mother, please everyone give her a hug and tell her how much I FREAKING LOVE HER!!!!!!!! She is the greatest ever and I am blessed to be able to call her mom.  She isn't that old either.   But I am so grateful for the support and love she gives me, I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for her (not just in this life, but on the mission, haha).   

So I have a question, does my missionary humor make you all laugh or is it just funny to me? I am not going to stop, but I was just curious if the things that make a missionary laugh make normal people laugh?  On to the week...

On monday we had a crazy lightning/rainstorm, it was the coolest thing ever, I think the sky didnt get dark because the lightning was constantly striking, it was so cool.  Because the lighting didn't stop neither did the thunder, and so it was like the thunder was rolling for an hour straight, it was a little bit intimidating, but it was really cool, it was too bad though because we couldn't go out that night.  Then we got a call from the Secretaries telling us they had been driving when a tree fell in front of them blocking the road, and a tree fell behind them, blocking the exit, so they were stuck.  They informed us of the group of 7 or so elders in the mission office with no food, so we got over there asap, and hit a KFC run, it was pretty fun, I have never driven in such bad weather,  but it was still really cool.  

On Tuesday we had the privelige of picking up the new missionaries, that is the best.  We were at the airport waiting for them when we the whole plane had gotten off and one of the flight attendants told us that there was no missionaries on the plane, so we thought they missed their flight and headed home.  As soon as we got home we got a call from president saying that they had a feeling to go back and check or something, and when they did they found Elder Chugg and Sister Espadas.  He asked how quick we could get there so we flew over there and picked them up.  On the way they were hungry so we made another KFC run (it is the only restaurant open 24hrs here.)

Then we just chilled with elder chugg all week, doing some teaching some trainings, and just having a good ol' time.  I am loving it, that is for sure, I think this was one of the most tiring weeks ever, but I really enjoyed it.  On Saturday the stake had a halloween activity, except they didn't really know what halloween was, but it was still fun, and because they didn't know what Chilli was we had a Feijoada cook-off instead, it went rather well.  Elder Payne dressed up as me, and I as him. Sazia is doing super well, in our visit this week she told us that her friend had just lost her child, and it was the second of her children to pass away in the last year.  Sazia was pretty beat up and wanted to know why God was so unfair at time, we had been planning on teaching the Plan of salvation, so it all worked out pretty well.  She came to church on Sunday and accepted a baptismal date for the 26th, so we are super excited for her.  And our area in general is going super well, I am super excited.  And I really hope things get back to normal this week.  I love you all though. Like a lot.
Elder Anthony Holt  

Here is us waiting with President at the Airport, and us with Elder Chugg and Sister Espadas.
Me and some little kids at the halloween activity, sister de souza with the photo bomb, haha
Me and more kids, 
The cutest little girl ever names catia
Me and vanda,
Everyone that came in costume.


So I didnt know what to carve into my pumpkin, but it was white and the inside was orange, so I carved a pumpkin in my pumpkin, and these are some african pics and just some other pics.  I love you all and wish you a happy halloween.

Elder Anthony Holt

YOMO; Work Hard, Eat Hard (10-24-16)

Family and the rest of you all on my email list that I love(and those that just open this email and then close it, so your phone will stop showing that you have unread mail)...  First off, I love you, and second off, this has been a pretty darn good week, and me and Elder Payne made our companionship goals, but I will get there, so just be patient, haha.  Well this week has been a good week, but also a roller coaster of a week, that is blissfully stressful, haha, I hope that makes sense.  We are just working our hardest, and we are finding some of the most elect people I have ever met in my mission, it is freaking sweet.  We have been trying to apply something president taught and work in what we call smaller-radius areas, so basically, we just get a pencil and draw a circle that is all of the houses within a 15-30 minute walk of the chapel and we only work there.  At first we were nervous because everything in that are was apartment buildings, and that is where the richest people live, and in the mission there is a bad air about them.  But we decided, "hey, a bunch of people all close to each other, they should be a little more educated, and they wont beat around the bush if they don't want to progress, sounds efficient to us" so we bucked up in our faith and we got going.  Withing 2 days we had found some of the most elect people I have met in my whole mission.  For the sake of time I will tell you about one, her name is Sazia, she is super cool, and so we go in, it was her and her 18 year old brother.  She lets us in, and we were sitting down when I notice a ton of books that with authors I recognize, like WHAT THE HECK!!!! you never see that in Mozambique, she had artists like dan brown, agatha christie, nicholas sparks, the dude that wrote 50 shades of grey, and shakespeare, all in portugues.  I just about died, then we talked about books to lead into the gospel, turns out she has 3000 books, that is ridiculous.  Then she tells us she is engaged to a guy from Liverpool, England, who is in Cabo Del Gado working.  Finally we teach the restoration, and the we were just so enveloped in the spirit that it was impossible to deny, she is so in love in reading that I gave her my personal copy of the triple combo to read until we can get her her own copy of the book of mormon.  Then we come back the next day, she has already read the first four chapters of the Book of Mormon and then she asked how many times we had read it and Elder Payne said 5 or 6 and she responds, "Well I am going to read it 12 times, just to beat you"  This happened Friday, and Saturday and then she comes to church, and in spite of a feedback filled sacrament meeting and a ton of noise, she feels the spirit super strong and starts crying.  In gospel principles she read the lesson in the manual and understood it better than the teacher, I am so in awe writing this at how many miracles I have seen in the last few days.  But she is super real.  My area is dope, so many people came to church, I love my comp, I love this work, God lives and I know that this is true.

Now to our comp goals
1-Work Hard, Eat Hard- i.e. the pictures of us at the nice restaurants
2-YOMO-You only mission once
3- I shouldnt send this one via email, sorry

Elder Holt

So like as part of our YOMO attitude, as well as Work Hard, Eat Hard, Elder Payne and I went to this restaurant called the Fish Market where we picked out the fish we wanted and then they cooked it up for us.  We got shrimp, squid, and this fish that I think is called grouper... 

Here's the pictures: 

p.s. i love you all
Elder Holt & Elder Payne