This blog is produced by the Shep Family... we post letters and photos that Kyle sends us from time to time...

A resident of Chennai is called a Chennaiite. As of 2001, Chennai city had a population of 4.34 million, while the total metropolitan population was 7.04 million. The estimated metropolitan population in 2006 is 4.5 million.In 2001, the population density in the city was 63,926 per mi, making it one of the most densely populated cities in the world. The average literacy rate is 80.14%, much higher than the national average of 64.5%. The city has the fourth highest population of slum dwellers among major cities in India, with about 820,000 people (18.6% of its population) living in slum conditions. In 2005, the crime rate in the city was 313.3 per 100,000 people, accounting for 6.2% of all crimes reported in major cities in India. The number of crimes in the city showed a significant increase of 61.8% from 2004.

The majority of the population in Chennai are Tamilians. Tamil is the primary language spoken in Chennai. English is widely spoken especially in business, education and white collar professions.

According to the 2001 census, Hindus constitute about 81.27% of the city's population, and Muslims (9.37%), Christians (7.63%) and Jains (1.05%) are other major religious groups

Chennai is a major centre for music, art and culture in India.[77] The city is known for its classical dance shows and Hindu temples. Every December, Chennai holds a five-week long Music Season celebrating the 1927 opening of the Madras Music Academy

Among Chennai's festivals, Pongal is celebrated over five days in January, is the most important. Almost all major religious festivals such as Deepavali, Eid and Christmas are celebrated in Chennai. Tamil cuisine in Chennai includes vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes. Many of the city's restaurants offer light meals or tiffin, which usually include rice-based dishes like pongal, dosa, idli and vadai,


Chennai has a tropical climate, specifically a tropical wet and dry climate. The city lies on the thermal equator and is also on the coast, which prevents extreme variation in seasonal temperature. The weather is hot and humid, for most of the year. The hottest part of the year is late May to early June, known locally as Agni Nakshatram ("fire star") or as Kathiri Veyyil,[32] with maximum temperatures around 38–42 °C (100–108 °F). The coolest part of the year is January, with minimum temperatures around 18–20 °C (64–68 °F). The lowest temperature recorded is 15.8 °C (60.4 °F) and highest 45 °C (113 °F). The average annual rainfall is about 51 in. The city gets most of its seasonal rainfall from the north-east monsoon winds, from mid-October to mid-December. Cyclones in the Bay of Bengal sometimes hit the city. The highest annual rainfall recorded is 2,570 mm (101 in) in 2005.


Monday, July 19, 2010

April 28 2010

Dear Family,

I, of course, still love you lots.

This week was quite entertaining. We have a new investigator who had shown up to Church all on his own on Sunday and wants to be baptized...

On Saturday we had a talent show! Many recent-converts did performances including:
1. Varadharajan singing an excellent Tamil song
2. Selva Singh singing a song he had made himself ("I believe the Book of Mormon, Doctrine Covenants, Pearl of Great Price. Oooooh.)
3. Kalaiselvi bravely singing a Tamil Song
4. Dinesh doing a scary mime. His face was painted like the Joker from Batman
5. James dancing to Michael Jackson. He was really good

We, the Elders, did an interpretive dance reenactment of Alma and sons of Mosiah converting to the cause of righteousness. We danced to Michael Jackson's song "Bad" and "The Way You Make Me Feel." I was the angel that commanded them to repent, then I joined them for the dance. We received wild applause. There will probably be hundreds baptized as a result of our dance.

Anyways, on the missionary work front we are doing incredibly well. There are a bunch of people who should have baptism dates pretty soon. Let me tell you about some of them!

1. Keerthana, Keerthi, and Logambal.
- This family consists of a 50 something year old mother who speaks little English and her son: Keerthi (24) and daughter Keerthana (20.) Their father died a little over a year ago and they were heartbroken from it. They are Hindu converts and were baptized into the Assembly of God church on January 1 2010. They love the Restored Gospel and say they want to be baptized in about 3 months as they give up their current church that they just recently got baptized in. They love the peaceful feelings they get at church.

2. Anu and Divya.
- Divya is 20 or so. She is in college and has been working hard to study and prepare for her exams. Anu is a mother of a small son (named Nixon) and her husband doesn't speak English. They are the cousins of Varadharajan (the recent-convert) who lives just 5 doors down from them. Their mother gives a beautiful smile (Indians have great teeth) and though she doesn't understand English joins us for the lessons every time. This family actually lives about 7 doors down from Keerthana and family, so they are easy to visit often.


Mark won't be too far from me will he? I wish that I got to wear a dress and sandals :( It's very popular here also, but the mission president hasn't decided to implement that dress style. We probably wouldn't be respected as much, not disrespected, but a suit sure is impressive isn't it? I will be praying for Grandpa. I can't imagine cancer being very fun.

I don't remember that time when I helped Beth with her homework, but I'm glad I did it! You can rest assured that the Kyle that will be returning from his mission will be much more prone to good works and service than the pre-mission Kyle. Service is incredible. You are right that I love these people, who couldn't?

Happy Birthday again! it sounds like everyone is excited to have you back.

Good luck on the SAT. Go ahead and beat me, then you can get a scholarship.

Sorry about your hand :( Get better soon. Have fun at graduation!


No comments: