Jacob 6:2 And the day that he shall set his hand again the second time to recover his people, is the day, yea, even the last time, that the servants of the Lord shall go forth in his power, to nourish and prune his vineyard; and after that the end soon cometh.

Cutest video ever!

Cutest video ever...At the very beginning you hear Elder Morgan tell the kids to go find a chameleon (the Malagasy are afraid of chameleons because they think they’re poisonous so it’s always a big deal when the missionaries touch them). Taylor then tells the kids to smile “ Tsiky tsiky tsara”. That cute little boy in the front left is asking, “Is it a picture? Who? Who? Who?” And you hear Taylor tell him it’s a video.

More cute kids!

Ha, when I was talking to all the kids, we were just naming a ton of different "laoka" that they like. Laoka is toppings for rice, they have a ton of kinds, so we were just naming a bunch.

Stories, Comments?

If any of you have received any letters or great stories from Taylor and would like to share it, we'd love to have it and post it here. When Taylor is done we are going to make this blog into a book for him. So we would love to have any additional stories that he may send to you. Just email them to moultonfamily1@msn.com. THANKS!!

Feel free to make comments to the posts below, and they will be emailed to Taylor. He would love to hear from you. Even if it is a small comment.

Letters from Elder Moulton:

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Just a little update...

Taylor is doing great now. He is back to normal with his pain and swelling, he is eating normally, and getting back into the routine of post mission-normal life!

We had been told early on when Taylor first started having physical problems (about a year or so ago) that his inflammation levels looked like he may possibly have Rheumatoid Arthritis. It runs in both sides of our family, so we thought it may be so. When Taylor returned, we took him to be tested for overall health and RA. He had some low levels in his general health that were easily treated with vitamin supplements, but even though he had such high inflammation levels (so high that they are only typically seen in RA sufferers), his RA results came back negative! We are so grateful for that!!

The doctor's only reasoning behind the high inflammation levels could be that they were possibly caused by the parasites that Taylor had. As Taylor left his mission, he was given the routine parasite treatment. After a month or so, Taylor was feeling great.

He has been working for the past month on an upcoming feature film as the production assistant for the camera crew. It was nice for him to get back into film work of some type. He is excited to continue with that, find some more film related work (wedding videos, feature movies, etc), and start his schooling in cinematography. 

Thanks so much for your love and support for Taylor. We all appreciate it so much!!
The Moulton's

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Bye Mada...Hello America :)

Sorry for the lack of updating the blog last week. The following explanation may be the reason:   :)

Shortly after we read Taylor’s last letter, Taylor’s Mission President called to inform us that Taylor had been sick with extreme diarrhea over the past week and a half or so. Constant diarrhea is pretty typical there in Mada, but this happened to be worse than typical. Apparently during the following week, Taylor’s joint pain and swelling began again and got to the point where Taylor was unable to really stand for a period of time or to be able to get around. As a result, Taylor was pretty bummed about the situation. He had been so excited to serve in his new area!! (In case you were wondering…we had no idea about any of these things…silly boy!)

Taylor suffered from this pain earlier in his mission. At that time it took several months to clear up. His Mission President told us that with the lack of medical care in Mada, he and Taylor felt it would be best to have him come home to get proper medical care here. 
They felt that if Taylor stayed to recover (possibly several months), he wouldn’t be able to perform his normal missionary duties. President Adam's would like to have kept Taylor there, but wanted him to end his mission on a good note. 

Since Taylor’s time left was short, they are sending him home with an honorable medical release and he will have completed his mission.

Here is an excerpt from the letter we received from Taylor's mission President:

"It is with both joy and sadness that we see Elder Taylor Moulton leave us. We have come to love and respect him. We express our profound appreciation and admiration for the great man he has become. Through his experiences here he has himself become converted to the gospel of Jesus Christ and has acquired many Christ-like attributes.

Madagascar is an amazing place in which to serve a mission. Though at times the conditions can be challenging, Elder Moulton has adapted very well and has loved the Malagasy people. He has been instrumental in bringing many of these wonderful people into the church. He has also been a great help in training the members and leaders in their responsibilities in the Church. Among them he has made lifelong friends. He has learned the language very well. Serving a mission here has given him cultural experiences which have deepened his empathy for and love of people of all types of backgrounds. He has learned to serve the poor and needy.

Elder Moulton has learned to be an obedient, faithful, and hardworking missionary. He has been an example to other missionaries and has served as a Junior Companion, Senior Companion, a Trainer, and as a District Leader. This example has been very valuable in helping guide the development of younger missionaries. We can say to him with great satisfaction, "Well done thou good and faithful servant".

With love and appreciation,
David R. Adams

As much as Taylor would like to visit with each of you...he struggles with those initial meetings at times. His emotions are extremely raw. He hesitates to share much, even with us. 

It has nothing to do with resenting his mission in any way or with coming home early. He loves Madagascar and the people there so much. Taylor struggles with the pain and suffering of the people there. Taylor is very tender hearted. Their pain is his pain. Life is hard in Mada. The people there have so little and yet share so much. He has seen a lot of things in Mada that are very close to his heart.

Taylor was very involved in their lives. He loved everyone he worked with, especially the children. A few days before returning home, Taylor found out that one of his sweet little buddies died. We asked him what happened. Taylor couldn’t bring himself to tell us. Earlier in his mission, as he was working with this same family, the father was killed instantly in a hit and run accident. He was super close with the family.  It tore Taylor apart to hear the news about the family that he loved so much. 

Taylor told us of another handicapped boy that would follow them around. After about 3 months, he led them to a family to teach. When they had taught them, he wanted to take them to teach another family. On the way, the boy started to seizure. He would run and lunge into walls, and bite Taylor as they struggled to hold him down so he wouldn't hurt himself. They were able to give him a blessing and he calmed down. There were so many people standing around laughing at the boy, just claiming that the boy had a "devil". No one would help. It made Taylor so sad. I think that is how they cope with death and sickness. The Malagasy people tend to turn to alcohol & black magic to solve their problems...it's pretty hard to change their ways sometimes. I'm sure they are just trying to find ways to mask the pain that they so often endure. Taylor left the next day on a transfer, so he's not sure what happened to the boy afterward.

Taylor knew closely many others that suffered or died also. Their lives really are so difficult. These kind of things occur frequently in Mada, but it hurts Taylor deeply to see the pain of people he loves so much. There really is just so much suffering there. The gospel is the one thing that really does give those that accept it and are diligent in living it real hope. He was so happy to share that with those that were ready to hear and live it. 

It would've been so hard to experience the things that Taylor did, but we are so grateful that he had the opportunity to learn from the Malagasy people how to love more deeply, to see how much the gospel means in each of our lives, and how it can change us if we allow it to.

We are also so proud of Taylor and his great attitude during the good, and not so good times. We are so grateful for the opportunity he has had in being able to serve and to love the amazing people in Mada, and to see their life and example in such a humble way. He will forever have a place in his heart for them and a desire to go back to be with them again. We are thankful to Heavenly Father for his watch over Taylor, and for the things he has been able to teach Taylor while he served the people in Mada. We are grateful for the testimony of the gospel that Taylor gained through constant prayer, studying the scriptures and the words of the leaders of the church, and through the service he was able to offer to the people there in our Father in Heaven's behalf.

Thank you everyone...for your love and support to us, and especially for Taylor!!  Taylor appreciates so much all of the support he has received from all of you!! It really has meant a lot to him! We are so grateful for your love and friendship to him too!!  Thank you everyone for your kind words and prayers for Taylor! We love you and are grateful for such great family and friends!! We are so happy to have Taylor home!!

Love ya,

P.S.-- Just an update so you know…Taylor is starting to eat better, but had his first meal in 2 weeks (other than yogurt) just the day before he left Mada. At this point he still doesn’t have much of an appetite and eats a little more than 1-2 meals each day. Sometime his body treats him better than others. He did tell us that he was told by the doctor in Mada that he has a worm. Taylor doesn’t ever complain about his legs or let us know it hurts much. He does have pain in his legs and noticeably favors them at times, but is doing much better especially considering he couldn’t walk at all just a few days before returning home. We will be taking him to several doctors over the next couple of weeks to find out just what exactly is going on with him.

So far, Taylor's visit with his doctor went really well! I love the way she picks up on possible causes. She tests for all kinds of things to find a cause instead of just treating symptoms. We go back in 2 weeks unless she finds something urgent. She took 12 vials of Taylor's blood to test!! She felt like a lot of what he is dealing with could stem from parasites that have caused inflammation. We sure hope so!!

Taylor enjoyed going to the MTC this week to use his malagasy during TRC as an investigator. Because there are so few missionaries that come back from Madagascar, he's excited to be able to do that often.

I tried to put Taylor's Mission Homecoming talk on the blog, but am having technical difficulties. If anyone would like an audio copy of it, just let me know. I can send you a copy. You can email me at moultonfamily1@msn.com    It really was such a sweet talk!! 

Monday, January 6, 2014

Happy New Year's from Mada!!

Tratsa ty tao iaby! Happy New Years.

So it was a pretty chill week. It's always kinda crazy for teaching with the multiple days of New Year's celebrations. There are typically massive drinking parties and extended hangover's here. Malagasies love New Year's and their alcohol. 

On New Years, we had a dinner with the family who brought us food in the hospital. Way sick family, super nice.

dope investigators

My girlfriend Priscilla

Prissy and her mom

For the record, Solofo's first name. Good question, ha, I wrote it down before, but I already forgot, I just call him Solofo. I knew Solofo's family before, but he started the mission 2 months before me, so I never met him before. We were never in the same areas.

I sent home 2 jackets, a nice thick one we bought on black friday that one time, and a neon orange TIDE jacket. Be watching for them. 

That's way weird that Dylan's mom bought the Cope's house, dang it, that house was way dope to hang out at. I'm sure we still can though since Jenny lives there and she loves us.

Suits.. you can get them made, but to be honest, they're not very nice. I think I'll just save the money, it's all good.

Have a good one everyone. Hopefully I have more time to fill you in next week.


Monday, December 30, 2013

Crazy week!!

Yeah, I'm gonna keep it short this week, too. This whole week we were either at the hospital getting treatments for Bates, or at home recovering. It was really just Bates recovering, but seeing as he is my other half, I'm including myself in that. Lots of stuff to take care of, it's been an interesting week with everything. 

gettin shots

Bates dying

I killed so many cockroaches and grasshoppers in that hospital

Some of our awesome investigators brought us food for 3 days while Bates was in the hospital. They took great care of us!!

That said, not much to report this week, just lots of sitting around. Bates' foot is getting worse, but his stomach (the reason we went to the hospital) is all good now. 

President Adams brought back Elder Solofoarimanana to work in our area. I replaced him when I came here, so we was only in his new area for like 2 weeks then came back. I'm stoked!

Solofo is from Ampefiloha, one of the areas I worked back in Tana. We hung out at his family's house sometimes. He's a cool dude, super chill. I'm stoked...in an amazing province, and with a native too. Time to drop the English. 

Love you guys.


Another pic for ya...
Heart shaped garlic bread, the waitress brought it for me and bates. It was good.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Skype!!

Just a snipit from Taylor from our back and forth email this week... 

"Its a way small branch, we've visited like everyone. This area is way new. I'm the 16th missionary to ever work here, so everyone is recent converts within the past year or 2 pretty much."

We didn't exchange letters since we'll be skyping on Thursday night, so just enjoy some pics this week!!

teaching english class

video conference with president and all the outlying 2 man areas


baobab trees on the road

the bap font fills up way slow

after kevins bap

we make and eat rice for every meal

a little girl giving me rocks through a fence

Monday, December 16, 2013

I made it to Toliara...I love this place already!!

I'm here in Toliara now. This place is stinking ballin. There's actually 6 dialects here. But they just wrap it all together and call it Teny Toliara (Toliara Language). If I was to have come here straight from the official dialect (in Tana) I wouldn't have understood much for sure, but Tamatave's dialect has a lot of similarities. It's still difficult, but I'll get it in a few weeks. This dialect sounds way more African than regular Malagasy, I love it.

The trip stunk, haha. Cool sights every now and then. But 29 hours on a hot mini bus got kind of old. I spent all day Tuesday driving alone from Tamatave to Tana, then stayed the night at the AP's place. 

stopping for rice


smith and marsh

mission board. our group is a lot bigger than we were last time I saw this thing

chilling in the office all night

It was way weird being back in Tana. I don't know like anyone there anymore, so many new people. Being out in province, you fall out of the loop. And it's even more so here in Toliara. I like it though. Helps me not get trunky.

Then on Wednesday, Andriamanganoro and I drove together to Fianarantsoa and stayed the night there. Then finally, on Thursday, I spent all day alone in a bus driving from Fianarantsoa to Toliara. Super glad that trip's over.

me and andriamanganoro

soooo tired

almost to fianarantsoa

I sent some pictures. I didn't take a ton on the ride cause honestly I got bored and tried sleeping the whole time. I didn't get sick though, I bought meds to knock me out so that definitely helped.

Bates and I are having a blast. Toliara is way sick. Toliara is a lot like Tamatave, just replace the palms for baobabs and add a lot of dust. It's a desert here. Pretty much the same heat as tamatave though, not too different. Just a lot less green.

my boi bates

The branch is legit. We get like 80 people at church. Everyone in this town is super close, everyone knows each other, so we're always saying hi to people. It's like that all over Mada, but here there is hardly any car traffic, just bikes and walking, way nice.

The members are way sick. Before English (which a lot of members and investigators come to) I got on the piano and sang a song for them, it helped break the ice, so everyone's chill with me now.

Um, so as far as Malagasy Christmas in general. To be honest, it's really not a big deal here, no one does anything. Everyone goes wild for new years though. It's really just a big drinking party. New Years and Easter. Stumbling drunkards, ha. Malagasy's don't really do the same holiday stuff we do. But at the church, the branch is gonna do a little party next week. Just karaoke and stuff I'm sure. They want Bates and I to do a show too, so we'll see what we whip up.

Check out pictures, have a good one and talk to you guys in a week.

saying bye to fr arsene's family (they're from toliara)

Monday, December 9, 2013

Transfers...oh yeah!!!!


About my new area...long story short, it's the sickest area in the mission. It's way down south. 5 insane dialects. It's gnarly. I'm stoked to learn some new malagasy. I don't know how they can still classify it as malagasy, but I guess it is somehow. It's definitely not what we learned in Provo. I am so stinking stoked. I leave tomorrow morning and get to Toliara (my new area) on Thursday night I think. Bates is gonna be my comp. We lived together the whole time I was in Ampefiloha, and he was in 67, ha. I was hoping for this exact transfer. time is gonna go so fast.. only 4 more transfer cycles, and I get to spend them in amazing Toliara. Toliara is like what everyone envies for because it's just a 2 man area, with no areas for hundreds of miles around. Crazy dialects.

Anyway, that'll be my week, on a bus. I'll take pictures.

This week was full of goodbye's too. I knew I was leaving, and a ton of people hooked us up with goodbye lunches/dinners. Investigators and members. Ah, so legit. I've got some legit pals here in Tamatave. I'm bummed to leave, but my stokedness to go to Toliara makes it pretty easy, ha. It's been a sick 7 months here. Here's to the next 5 1/2 down south.

one of my favorite families. Solo and Lea and kids

veronique doing my hair

another dope family. Allembine, Tina, Fabrice, Kanto and Sitraka

goodbye lunch with Sylvan and Virginie's family. Way sick investigators

Another goodbye lunch with a bunch of members

Just so you know, I got the 3rd package this past week. Thanks a ton, I gave a ton of the candy to some kids, blew their minds as always. I downed a bunch of it, too.

I gave my girlfriends some laffy taffy's

The AP's came this week. Smith stayed in the other house, Marsh stayed at our house for 2 nights. it was way fun. On Friday we had a conference with all the missionaries, president, and Elder and Sister Renlund from south Africa. it was pretty legit.

chilling with marsh again

saying bye to smith. dude's going home

I'm gonna try to see Ravaka when i head back to Tana, I'm not sure how much time I'll have in the mission home though, hopefully enough time to reorganize my suitcases.

Alrighty, I'll send pictures of the ride down to Toliara next week. I'm stoked out of my mind. Road trip across the country, what?!

love you, Taylor

A few more pics to enjoy...

fatana gasy. They pack down sawdust around a bottle then char it and use to to cook all day

like this.