Sunday, August 28, 2016

Week 6

Letter to Mom

 Hey that's awesome that dad gets to be in young mens! (Stake Young Men's first counselor) although I'm sure hes going to miss his old geezers :P (He was High Priest Group Leader)
So my area has 2 branches, Kyambeke and Ilima. Both have small chapels and have a full 3 hours of church on Sunday. We alternate which one we go to every week.

Next week we have a baptism! She is a young girl of 8 or 9 (I don't remember) named Diana Kyuvi, her parents' are members so that's why we are teaching her the lessons and she is very shy. she doesn't speak a lot of English so mostly Elder Otika teaches her. Her sister Aujua is also taking the lessons with her but she doesn't have a baptism date yet.

We also have an investigator named Muteso that started coming to church the week before I came for ome unknown reason. He lives very far away so we cant visit him but he has come to church every week and we teach him there. He is proof that the lord works in mysterious ways. unfortunately he doesn't know english and even his Swahili isn't great, his language is Kamba which is the language that the locals in Kolungu hills speak so we always have a member there to help us teach him in his native tongue.

Otherwise I'm still just walking up and down hills meeting more people that don't know English haha.

I did finish Jesus the Christ yesterday though.  It mentioned something I never noticed before. In Mormon 8:10-11 it mentions that the disciples of the Lord withdrew from the people but they taught Mormon and Moroni.  That is in reference to the 3 Nephites that Jesus promised would live forever.

Tell everyone Hi for me! let me know how Elena and her kids are doing. (Joseph's cousin from Vancouver.)

Video  (Let me know if this doesn't open for you please. )  Try both. I haven't got this figured out yet.  Sorry.


 DSCN0328[1].MOV​    DSCN0328[1].MOV

​So here's a short video about a common food in the area called Chopoti!

It is basically a thick tortilla or flat bread.

Its made with Flour, water, and some salt and sugar for flavoring.

So we eyeballed the ingredients so I can't give you measurements but basically you need to make a  relatively thick dough, add a decent amount of sugar and salt, then make balls out of it that sit in the palm of your hand, maybe about 2 golf balls in size. Next roll it out into a tortilla shape similar in size to a small pan but leave it a bit thicker. About 1/3 of an inch thick or so. Put it into a pan and cook it until it starts to form brown spots then put in a spoonful of oil and cook it on both sides.

Serve with whatever, normally the people here just eat them or dip them in there food.Personally I like making tacos out of them.

We also added an egg and cinnamon for better flavor but that's not normal. ha ha.

These are the pictures from last week:

Kolungu Hills

 Blue Caterpillar

Out Joseph's flat back door

 Father to son communication struggles.  Haha :P

Russ : Jumbo Son - actually I'm not sure how it is spelled. But I understand that the term   'jumbo' in Swahili equals a very warm greeting. A very sincere howdy son.

Joseph: Jambo! to you too! (its with an a :P)

Russ:  You have to spell “Jumbo” for me so I know where to put the “P” that you say it has in it.

Joseph: oh I see haha

Its Jambo (pronounced Jam-bo)

I meant that it has an A not a U
You misunderstood my goofyface   :P

Letter to Dad

Thanks for all the great thoughts, they really help me and I look forward to your treat next week.

It is interesting how when Satan gets more influence so does the church. The last days are indeed very polarizing and you can already start to see the ripening of the Field as the Savior prepares to separate the Wheat from the tares.

Also good luck on your new calling!

Sunday, August 21, 2016


Letter to MOM:
So we have been teaching lessons, its almost entirely in Swahili so I really cant tell you anything else about them...

Our days usally look something like this: wake up, shower breakfast etc.

I study Swahili for 1 hour then we have comp study (where elder Otika informs me about our investagtors that he will be teaching :P)

We usually leave about 12:00 then walk for about an hour to someones house that is a ways away, usually a less active member, then we walk back stopping at various homes to teach lessons and meet new people

About 6:00-6:30 we arrive back at home (it gets dark about 7 so we can't really proselyte anymore, We are allowed to be out until 8:00) and then walk down to the market to pick up food for dinner then we get ready for the night and I study more Swahili and such.

Everyday we go to a different area and we rotate which area we areas we are going to so every Tuesday we are a specific hill/area etc.

my companion (Elder Otika) is a Kenyan native from a town call Eldorid (I think) which is northwest of Nairobi. He is a little soft spoken but can be pretty crazy to haha. His favorite movie was Pirates of the Caribbean  and he quotes it a lot, its funny.

Letter to Dad:
Jambo! to you too! (its with an a :P)

I will remember mom next time I fast and in my prayers, hopefully it works out well.

Kyambeke is a very beautiful area and I am grateful for that, its nice to have a good view after we spend an hour hiking up a hill. I look forward to being able to speak Swahili so I can actually help in the lessons! (the mtc really needs to teach Swahili because its is 100% necessary to learn here haha) 

Sunday, August 7, 2016


Joseph wasn't able to e-mail us this last week because he went to Kenya!  He met with his Mission President, Pres. Msane and then headed off to a place called Kyambeke.  It is 70 miles southeast of Nairobi.  When Russ map quested it, it gave traveling time as 2hr. and 46 minutes to travel that 70 miles...

I have posted the letter Pres. Msane sent us and a pic of Joseph with him and his wife.  Russ and I think we are really going to like his mission president. We think that Joseph is in good hands.
 It also has Joseph's letter address if anyone is inclined to send him snail mail.

Butters and Pres.jpg (4608×3456)


KENYA NAIROBI MISSION               Office:   +254 -708-167-424
Opposite African Wildlife Foundation              
Ngong Road              Cell:         +254-737-513-418
P.O. Box 46162 – 00100
Nairobi, Kenya

5 August 2016

Dear Family of Joseph Russell Butters,

We have welcomed Elder Butters, who has arrived safely in the Kenya Nairobi Mission.  He is a choice 
young man and eager to be an excellent missionary. I was pleased to note the preparation, worthiness and 
commitment of your son to be obedient and to serve the Lord honourably.  This is the first generation of 
church membership for the people in this mission in the huge and diverse continent of Africa, and I know that as he serves the people, he will learn to love them and they will love him.  His testimony is strong, and I am honoured to have him serve in our mission.  

Elder Butters is laboring in Kyambeke in the Kilungu Hills District in Kenya, with an excellent companion, Elder Otika. Sister Msane and I will see him at least every four to six weeks at Zone Conference, and I will have an interview with him on those occasions.  Excellent doctors and medical care are available here if
 health problems occur.  We pledge to take good care of your son.  This is a great mission and we know he
 will be successful.

Mail to your son should be addressed to:
Kenya Nairobi Mission, 
P. O. Box 46162-00100, 
Opposite African Wildlife Foundation Ngong Road 
Nairobi, Kenya

I will encourage him to write home every week, but mail is slow, so be patient.  The Missionary Department
 has authorized
 e-mail to the family once a week, if it is available to you.  We are grateful for this added blessing.  Telephone 
contacts and personal visits to missionaries by friends and relatives are inappropriate and contrary to long-standing Church policy. Full-time missionaries have made a commitment to devote their full time and attention to proclaiming the Gospel, 
and any such contacts during the time they are serving detracts from their effectiveness.  However, we do urge you to write to him weekly.

Thank you for teaching, nurturing and sending forth this fine young man, anxious to serve the Lord and to honor his family and other loved ones.  May the Lord bless you with peace and assurance that all is in His hands.


President Ephraim Msane
Kenya Nairobi Mission

The letter copied kind of choppy but I think you can make out what its saying.  I will try to update this blog every Sunday and know that the blog is being posted by Laura, Joseph's mom but I haven't figured out how to fix that yet...

Wednesday, August 3, 2016


Joseph says:
I wish I could have been at the fireside, (The Borders just got back from a mission in Russia) that was probably Awesome! Its also great that Bruni (our foreign exchange student, Leon's, mom )wants to follow my blog. unfortunately I don't really have much to say yet since I have been enclosed in the MTC with 30 other Americans haha. We watched "The best two years" which was fantastic and much easier to relate to as a missionary, if you can find time I would recommend watching the story In the land of tulips as well :)

If you're curious about the MTC is pretty small and can take about 40 missionaries at a time. My group is about 30. The MTC president is Pres. Ashton who served as mission president in Washington about 10 years ago so you may be familiar with him. My current teachers are Sister Van Syl and Brother Mugaji both from south Africa and returned from their missions about 1 year ago. I wish I could upload pictures to show you but we don't have enough time and the internet is to slow.

So next p-day we are traveling to our missions so I'm not sure if I will be able to email this next week but I will for sure in 2 week.

I have been personally reading in Alma in the Book of Mormon and just pondering the story of Amulek.  Its amazing how the most staunch opponents of the gospel can become great supporters of 
it.  Unfortunately there will not be any pictures until I get out of the MTC because the internet is too slow to upload any and we have a very limited time to email but look forward to them in 2 weeks. 

Interesting info on Kenya from Laura:
Kenya – Kenya has two official languages, English and Swahili, but like in many other African nations, these languages are often the second language for many citizens whose first language is that of their ethnic group. The main ethnic groups in Kenya are Bantu and Nilotes. Kenya’s population is very young (over 70% of the population is under age 30) thanks to a high population growth rate. Over 80% of Kenya’s population is Christian, with most of these belonging to various Protestant faiths such as the Presbyterian Church of East Africa and the Anglican Church of Kenya. A little over 10% of the population is Muslim. The many different tribes within the country each have their own traditions and practices. The guitar is very popular in much of Kenyan music, and Genge and Kapuka (types of hip-hop) are also popular. While folk music is usually sung in tribal languages, popular music is generally in English or Swahili. In athletics, Kenya is best known for its middle- and long-distance runners, who often perform very well in the Olympics. However, soccer, cricket, rugby, and motor rallies are also popular. While each region has its own different foods, ugali (corn flour made into a porridge or dough ball) is eaten in most of the country, generally with a meat or vegetable stew. Nyama choma (grilled goat or sheep) is also popular in many areas.