13 November 2011

A Sunday in Kyrgyzstan (or life as an isolated Mormon)

Religious post ahead.  Updated April 27, 2015.

Our church isn't recognized here and currently there are no other expat Mormon families living here that we know of.  We're not part of a mission or any other organization except the East Europe Area; we're directly under the area.  Those two sentences make our situation sound like a typical isolated family thing, but that is not the case.  I can't tell you more about that though.

Mormons are big on meeting together every week for church, but that looks a little different for my family because we don't have anyone else to meet with.  We're rather jealous of isolated members in Alaska who get to have church over the phone and the online expat branch in China.  Especially the expat branch because we live as close to Beijing as some of them do.  Anyway, we have church at home every week and since we don't have an online branch, we're finally getting creative in creating our own.  So here's a Sunday at our house in Bishkek.

8 AM ish- get up and make breakfast (crepes today) while we're getting all the devices ready for church.  Eat every crepe.

9- Husband and older sons go in one room to Skype with their uncle and grandpa for priesthood meeting.  I go in another room to Skype with various sisters, grandmas, and cousins for Primary with the little one.  This was the first time we'd done Primary over Skype and we had to work out a few glitches, but it went well in the end.  Various cousins say prayers and talk about the sacrament with my littlest. 

10ish- Since most of the family is dressed for church we decide to do sacrament meeting.  Husband gets things ready for the sacrament while I get the music ready.  We have a keyboard and piano players but it generally works best for us to use the sacrament meeting collections because we like to sing fast.  Everyone takes turns giving talks which doesn't make the older boys happy.  I tell them that they'll be able to make some good jokes in a few years about the number of talks they've already given in sacrament meeting.

11ish- Clean up from church and breakfast and hang up the laundry.  Diddle around and eat lunch.

1PM- Do the dishes again while husband cleans the bathroom and we all get ready for some friends to come visit which we plan on every week.

1:55- Friend calls to say she'll be late and no one else can come today.  Play games with the boys till she come.

2:30- Talk and read with friend for an hour.  The boys watch a movie.

3:30- She goes home and we diddle around some more and I do some family history.  You shouldn't be accountable for every minute on Sunday, should you?

4:45- Start dinner (plov, pickled cucumbers, and naan)

Do rest of the evening stuff which doesn't really have anything to do with today's being Sunday

PS:  If you're moving to any sort of isolated area of the LDS church, please don't assume that there are no members there.  You might be surprised.  But isolated members aren't easy to track down.  In the Middle East where the church isn't organized in many countries you can contact the Middle East Desk at middleeastdesk@ldschurch.org for more information.  If you're coming to post-Soviet Central Asia you need to get in contact with the East Europe Area office.  If your bishop can't figure out how to do that, I can.  If you're LDS and have any connection with Kyrgyzstan or any other part of Central Asia we'd love to hear from you, especially if you'll be in Bishkek because we'd be delighted to invite you to church.  Just be ready to give a talk.

Update:  With the announcement of a new Central Eurasian mission in July 2015, it's likely that you'd need to contact that mission office in Istanbul to find out where members are in Central Asia.  There are nearly always members in all of the countries of Central Asia.


  1. Are there any missionaries there?

  2. There are no LDS missionaries of any type in Kyrgyzstan. There was a humanitarian couple there more then 10 years ago for a short time and humanitarian missionaries have briefly traveled to Kyrgyzstan a few times since to do small projects.