Wednesday, December 31, 2014
Hey everyone! It was great to get the opportunity to talk to you all this week. That was definitely a plus. But yeah... we enjoyed Christmas this year. On Wednesday, we had a carols night at the stake center that was sweet. I would say I haven't really felt the normal Christmas spirit that I am used to but I definitely felt the Christmas spirit at the carols night. I was lucky enough to be able to be a part of four of the musical numbers. Two with the missionaries, one with the elder's quorum, and one with Green Hill branch. It was sweet. We enjoyed. It was a cool experience to have the entire stake gather together and sing Christmas carols. But yeah. Then on Christmas I tried to make brownies for the Davies (our branch president and his family) but lets just say they didn't quite cook all the way through. They were starting to burn and they looked like they were done so I took them off the stove, but when I tried to put them on the plate the center poured out like liquid. Oops... I guess that they weren't quite done. That is what you get when you try to cook them on the stove. But I still enjoyed the batter. :) But yeah... we had a zone activity on Christmas where we killed and ate six chickens... that was fun... took a long time but it was still cool. Then well the best part of the week.... I got to talk to you!! I love you all and I enjoyed talking to you all. It was very much enjoyable. Then one exciting thing that happened on Saturday is is that the elders quorum came together and we went around and sung carols for the less actives in the ward. That was a very cool activity. This branch is a powerful branch. We probably had around 140 people at church yesterday. And man... the members fed us yesterday... a lot. We were fed fufu twice and rice and stew once. It was sweet! Although... a little too much food... I was dead last night. But yeah... today we were invited by one of the pioneers of the church here in Ghana to talk to us today so we got to hear his story about how the church was brought to Ghana. It was sweet. Well... I love you all!! Hope that you have a wonderful week! Elder Walston
Tuesday, December 23, 2014
Hello!! Merry Christmas! Hope you all had a good week and I hope that you all have an amazing Christmas this week. But yeah... this week was pretty sweet. I went on exchanges twice this week but I was able to stay in my area both times. I went with Elder Chishinji from Zambia on Wednesday. Man, he is a powerful elder. He has been out as long as me. He is also in Green Hill but on the other side. We had a sweet day together on Wednesday. Then on Thursday we had a Zone Conference for Christmas with all the missionaries in the Cape Coast area. It was three zones together. It was pretty good. There were some fun activities that we got to participate in. The food was so nice. We enjoyed. Then after that we went to Nkanfoa and I was able to do two baptismal interviews. That was cool because both of them were translated and I was able to work with one of the old ward missionaries from when I was there. That was sweet. Then on Friday I went on exchanges with Elder Hackmeister. That was fun. Well... looks like I have run out of time but no worries! I get to speak to you on Christmas!! Love you all!!! Have a wonderful Christmas!!! Elder Walston
Saturday, December 20, 2014
Hey all!! Hope that your Christmas season has been filled with cheer. This week has good for me. I am enjoying Green Hill. One sweet thing that they have done is that have somehow created a roster of all the families and set us up to do FHE with each of them on a specified week. It definitely help us or me to get to know the members a little better. But it is really nice as the leaders of this branch are very well organized. There is around 100 active members of the branch and I would not be surprised if they were able to make it a ward before too long. The missionary work has been booming as we have about 20 recent converts to work with. We have a few sweet investigators who we are working with. The area here is looking a lot more promising than it was looking in Kojokrom. This Sunday the branch decided to have me involved a whole lot. They had me give the opening prayer, I was the first speaker, and I sang a solo as part of a musical number. That singing part was wayy nerve racking, but I enjoyed the rest. Everything flowed quite well. We attend church in a rented hall (I have yet to attend in a church built chapel) but this place is very nice. It is on the top of a hill which makes it a fun little climb. Especially as there is a member in our ward, Brother Mensah, who is crippled and we take him in his wheelchair to the chapel every week. Man, carrying that wheelchair up those stairs can be so very tiring, but it is sweet to see him there. Brother Mensah is a sweet man. I was told that he got a polio vaccination but it backfired and crippled him. Really sad, but it is sweet to see the testimony that he has. I was also able to go on splits this week with Elder Egunza in Cape Coast. He is a sweet elder from Kenya. That was fun. We were able to proselyte with one of their members, Ebeneezer, who is getting ready to serve his mission in Caliba, Nigeria this February. Sweet man. And then I was blessed to do two baptismal interviews for them. It was powerful. But yeah... today we had an activity on the beach where we played capture the flag. That was fun, and now here I am. These past few weeks I have been trying to think of the Savior's life and the importance of this season. Sometimes it really doesn't feel like Christmas here because it is not as commercialized, but it has given me time to think about the true meaning of Christmas. In my studies I have been trying to read things more about Christ. We have a Christmas devotional this week which I am excited for. But I encourage all to look at why we have Christmas. Study the life of the Savior. Why is it important? Because without him, we would be a lot and fallen people. Well, I love you all and I hope that you all have a wonderful week!! Elder Walston
Tuesday, December 9, 2014
Hello! This week has been a great week here in Green Hill. I am starting to get used to everything here. The members are great though. I have been fed five times this week. Lots of fufu... makes me happy. Well, we live at the branch president's house. He rents out the back part to the missionaries. Although he is never at home because he works in Aubra and stay there during the week and comes back on the weekends. His family is sweet though. I love them. The members in Green Hill are very nice I am just trying to get to know them a little better.This week I was able to go on splits with one of the elders from Nkanfoa. One of the ward missionaries who we worked with when I was there completely tackled me when they saw me. It was cool to see that area. I miss it but I see that it is good to go from place to place and not stay in the same area all the time.
Well, Love you all!!!!!
Monday, December 1, 2014
Hey everyone!! This has been an interesting week. Tuesday was a day of saying goodbye to our members and investigators in Kojokrom. One of the members, the Agbo's, prepared us the absolute best fufu with light soup. And CAT! It was really really nice... they make the best fufu that I have ever had. But yeah. Saying goodbye is hard but when you pick me up Mom and Dad, we have to go there! But then on Wednesday I came here to Green Hill to meet my new companion, Elder Barlow from Las Vegas. He is a cool guy. He is the 7th of 15 kids in his family... big family. He has been out just over a year. He spent his first year in Serra Leon though so he doesn't know Fante very well, but I am excited to be with him. The branch here in Green Hill seems to be very on top of things which is very nice. The missionary work here has been very good this last year. The members are sweet. I am excited. Yesterday I was pretty sick, but luckily I woke up this morning feeling much better. We went to church in the morning but I wasn't able to do anything else. Luckily Sister Stevenson was able to get me on some meds. But yep... just good 'ole life here in Ghana. Oh yeah... my companion spoiled us with a nice Thanksgiving dinner. He made us fried chicken, stuffing, potatoes, gravy, and corn. It was really good. He is sweet. We are in the apartment with two other elders, Elder Darlington from Nigeria and Elder Chishinji from Zambia. They are sweet people. We have been enjoying together. But since both of them are new to the area and I am new, all four of us went out to see the area together on Wednesday. It was good. Sorry if this email is a little scrabled but that is how my thoughts have been the past few days. But I love you all. Stay strong and look to Christ in all that you do! Love you!!!Elder Walston
Monday, November 24, 2014
Hey everyone! This week was a rather eventful week. On Tuesday we had interviews with our mission president. I was a little nervous as I had to give an instruction along with Sister Stevenson and the Assistants. But it went all good. I had a good interview and I was able to talk to him about quite a bit. He a kind of gave me false hope that I would be here for Christmas though. I found out on Saturday that I will be leaving Kojokrom to go Green Hill, an area in Cape Coast. I am pretty sad that I won't get to spend Christmas here in Kojokrom, but I guess it had to happen since I have been here for almost ten months. I am going to be with an Elder Barlow. I hear that he is one of the missionaries that came from Sierra Leon when they were evacuated due to ebola. But I am excitted. I will be in the same district as Nkanfoa, so I will get to go on splits to my old area... I am excited for that. But yeah... we went to stake conference yesterday in Takoradi. There were quite a few people there and the little bit that I heard was really good. I had to sit outside since there wasn't enough room inside but it was a broadcast for all of Africa. But what I got from it was quite a bit of change needs to happen with the people here especially with the cultural things such as a bride price, and the way they do their weddings and funerals. They were pretty much told to stop all of it. They talked about how we must all change from our cultures to the gospel culture. The culture of Christ is what we must have, there is no other alternative. But yeah... that was sweet. It was kind of sad that I wasn't really able to say goodbye to a lot of the people since many didn't come. But I still have one last day here. Well... I love you all. Life is great! I hope that you all have a great Thanksgiving this week! Take
Sunday, November 23, 2014
Hello all! Hope that the week went well for you all. It was a wonderful week here in Kojokrom. We got fed quite a bit this week and that was really nice. We got fed fufu a few times, rice balls, banku. It was pretty nice. But yeah. This week I went on splits with Elder Pearmain in my area. That was fun. We were blessed with a pretty good day. But yeah... the highlight of my week was yesterday, my birthday. Two of the members, Gloria and Julie, made doughnuts for everyone at church for my birthday and stuff. I was fun to be able to be here in Kojokrom for my birthday. I also had someone make me a photo album and bead tie. It was way cool. Then today we went to the Julanders and watched 17 Miracles. Powerful movie that I would suggest everyone to see. It was way good. People have been treating me well.This past week I have been studding about Diligence and being consecrated to the Lord. One thing is that we must put everything on the alter of sacrifice. We must do all that we can. A story I like is that of Roger Bannister. He was the first one to break the four minute mile. But he had to be diligent leaving everything he had to accomplish the task at hand. That is at times, what we all must do.
My companion elder Pearmain and I.... left overs of fufu and goat (I ate the eye ball and head) and rice balls and the presents a member gave me for my birthday:
Thursday, November 13, 2014
Good afternoon everyone! This week was a very good week here in Kojokrom. We enjoyed life this week. Elder Mafundityala and I have been trying to push this area a bit. We really tried to push the members this week and I feel that it is working out. Each and every day is a new adventure. I was able to go on splits with Elder Odongo this week. We went into his area and that was fun to be able to go to a different area. We then were blessed to get to go and do baptismal interviews for our sisters in East Tanokrom. That was fun. Sorry... I am out of time.... I lost track of time. I love you all though and I hope that you have a great week!
With Love and Care,
P.S. My African Shirt I just got with my companion.
Monday, November 3, 2014
Hey everyone! This week was pretty good. We were able to do a bit of work and at the same time have a bit of fun. This Wednesday we received another instruction from the Julanders about goals and making plans that will help us for the future. They also talked about not building too much stress or trying to become perfect. Elder Julander said that sometimes, "We just need to let it go." None of us are perfect so we shouldn't bring ourselves down because we aren't. Rather just do our best and know that we have done all the Lord expects of us.
Then on Friday, we had a little Halloween feast... meaning I tried to make brownies and since we don't have an oven I tried to bake them on the stove. We mostly just had brownie batter. But then one of the elder bought Fan Ice and Fanta and we had fanta floats. It was pretty good and fun. Nice to be able to enjoy a little bit after we came back.
Then on Saturday we were supposed to have a football match with the Young Men, but not enough people showed up and no one had a ball! Things here are very disorganized and that is kind of frustrating. But I guess that is what we are here to help fix.
Then yesterday we were able to finally watch General Conference! I was way excited for that. It was powerful and I can't wait to get the Liahona to be able to read the rest of the talks. I was only able to watch a session and a half, as we got there an hour late (we were told the wrong time). But it was sweet!
As I was reading the Book of Mormon this week there was a scripture that stood out to me. Moroni 9:6. An amazing scripture. We all need to labor diligently. Do all that we can to help bring others to righteousness. Missionary work is a divine work, a work for everyone.
Well, I love you all!!!
|Look what Elder Walston found! BYU in Ghana!|
Monday, October 27, 2014
Hello everyone! How are you all? I hope life is going as wonderful as it is here. This week not too much interesting happened all that much... I think I need to start writing the events of the day in my planner because I can never remember the exciting things of the week to tell you. But this week we went to an investigator to teach and she was beginning to pound fufu. So I pounded for her, got like ten blisters on my hands while doing it though. But she insisted that we eat. It was way good. Some of the best palm nut soup that I have had. I have decided that I will have to get a pistol and mortar so that I will be able to make fufu when I come home for all of you. :)
Today we had a District Activity and we went to the Julanders and watched "The Best Two Years." It is a lot funnier once you have been on mission and experienced the situations that they go through. And then she made us cinnamon rolls. I haven't had anything like those in a long time. It was really nice.
Other than that, not too much happened other than just sweet good days proselyting with my companion. We are pushing forward and hoping that the work will continue to push forward. I am excited for this coming week as we will finally get to watch general conference. I have been able to watch a few talks but I am excited to see more although we will only get to see two sessions most likely.
I have almost finished with the Book of Mormon this week. I only have two chapters left. Before hand I had been reading the Doctrine and Covenants and the New Testament. But I decided I wanted to start reading the Book of Mormon again. When I read it I just feel a different spirit. The others are great and they definitely invite the spirit, but I just feel better as I have been reading the Book of Mormon each day, something that we testify about each and every day. It is something that I encourage everyone to do. Read the book each and every day. It holds the fullness of the everlasting gospel and it is the keystone of our religion. It is so important.
Well, I love you all! Have a great week!!!
Monday, October 20, 2014
Hey everyone! How are you? This past week has been pretty good. We were blessed by many things this week. Each and every day is a blessing. We are all truly blessed each and every day. Sometime we just have to look at the blessings that the Lord provides us with. The Lord loves each of us and will provide us all with the help that we need.
The most interesting thing that happened this week is that I got to deal with someone who had been involved with polygamy. It is a practice that takes place here every now and again but mostly by the chiefs. For them, they have to have special permission to be baptized. That was an interesting experience.
Today we had a Zone Activity and went to the beach and played some rugby and had some fried rice. It was pretty good the only downer was that it was raining pretty hard. But it was fun nonetheless. We enjoyed. There are two really really good rugby players in our zone. One played for the US National team and I believe the other might have played for South Africa's. It is a very fun sport and I hope that I am not too sore tomorrow.
One thing that I have been studding these last few days is about the Book of Mormon and the importance of it. It is really, along with the spirit, the most important thing that can build each of our testimonies. It will truly bring us closer to Christ, I can testify of it. It is there to help us so we should use it!
Well, I am sorry that it is so short today, but I am short of words. Love you all!
Monday, October 13, 2014
Hey everyone!! This week has been good, but not too much really happened. Just a lot of missionary work. You know, the amazing work that I have been sent here to Ghana to do. This week we have been focusing on finding and teaching a lot of new investigators. I am still not completely sure how things will work out for all of them, but I hope that they will for the best. We have been helped a lot this week by one of our members, Gloria. One cool thing about her, is that last April we were talking to her about the Book of Mormon and found out that she has never read it all the way through. She is 17 and we challenged her to and helped her to start reading it. she finished it yesterday. It is cool to see the change in her and it was neat to see her be able to read it in its entirety. This last week we had a sweet instruction from our senior couple, Elder Julander. He taught us about finding out our governing values. Who we truly are and let those things drive us and push us onward. It was a very sweet instruction but I guess I have been in Kojokrom too long because this is the second time he has given this instruction since I have been here. I really picked up a lot. Something that I have realized is that we need to apply the things that we learn. So many times we hear things and think that this is great, I need to work on it, but so many times we don't actually but in the time to work on it. When we do, that is when we see the improvement in our lives. Something that we need to work on each and every day. Continual progression.Well, I love you all so much! I hope that you all have a wonderful week!
Monday, October 6, 2014
Hey family! How are you all doing? The wonderful town of Kojokrom is doing quite well. This last week was good. We had some sad news however, Belinda who was to baptized had to leave to go to Ivory Coast today so we were not able to hold the baptism. Her mother is staying there (as her father was an Ivorian) and she wants to have her little boy, Joel, to go to school in Ivory Coast. So she is taking him there to go to school and to stay with the mother. She will be gone for a month so we will have to wait until then to continue with her.
But this week was okay. We had an elder get transfered into Kojokrom this week, Elder Pearmain. He is a sweet guy. He is the first American I have been around since I was with Elder McKeon.We also were able to do a service project with our Zone this week. We went and weeded for Isaiah's Children school that is owned by a member. Sadly she had a stroke not too long ago so she still had trouble walking too much. It was a blessing that we were able to go and weed for her and help the school.
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Hey everyone! Hope that you are all safe and sound! I have had a very good and blessed week this week, even though the power has been off probably 80% of the week. We have been able to teach a lot and we just simply had a good week. We were supposed to have a baptism this week for a sister, Belinda, this week, but sadly the baptismal font did not fill up because the water has not been running the last few days (it is as consistent as the power). But Belinda is ready and she is as sweet as ever. She is 22 years old and has a little 5 year old boy, Joel. It was a blessing that we were able to teach her because she is someone who we contacted and tried to follow up on a few times, but she was never at home when she told us to come. Then about two months later Edna, the member who we were working with when we contacted her, ran into her and she said that she wanted us to come by. So we did and she was so very happy with the things we taught and the rest is history. She loves the church. I am excitted for her.Let's see... what else happened. Yesterday was Elder Shinasi's last Sunday as he is going home today, so we go fufutwice yesterday and this morning. It was really nice. It was sad to have to say goodbye to Elder Shinasi as we have been together in the same apartment for the last eight months, but I am happy for him. He is a sweet elder. I was able to go on splits with him yesterday as his last day out. It made me realize how much I will truly miss all these people when I finally will have to say goodbye. Ghanaians are the best and Kojokrom is simply the best as well.
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Hello everyone! First off, sorry for not emailing last week, but first my companion was sick and then we got online and and the power went off before I had the chance to email everyone... SORRY!But these last two weeks have been pretty good. Last two weeks ago we had Elder Curtis of the seventy come and speak to us. He is the President of the West Africa Area so he had a lot to tell us... for like the first 40 minutes he just talked about ebola and the Sierra Lieonian and Liberian missionaries that joined us a little bit back. He just wanted to warn us and reassure us that we are safe here in Ghana. Then we discussed Alma 5, which is a very powerful chapter. He had everyone share their favorite verses and we talked about the chapter in whole. For me I like verse 26 very much because it reminds me of the Hill Cumorah and what we did. But it is true that we can experience that change in our hearts due to our Savior. But I also like verse 33 a lot because it says that his arms of mercy are extended to all. Christ loves each and everyone of us. He is there for us and his arms are open to each of us. It was a very cool meeting. Then last weekend my companion was sick all of Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday.... so those days were very boring but I was blessed to be able to get a lot of Studying done. This week I had to go to Takoradi on Thursday to get my non-citizen card renewed here. They made a law a year ago that we must have them as we are here in Ghana. Then on Friday I was able to go on splits with Elder Shinasi and I was blessed to get to do two baptismal interviews as well. It is a cool experience to get to see the desires of people wanting to be baptized. Then this Sunday our mission president asked us to have a special fast because on of the missionaries in our mission lost family due to the ebola in Liberia. But yeah... yesterday we had a combined Zone activity in Sofokrom where we roasted three pigs and ate it with cassava and while that was going on we played some football (soccer). My body is beat... sun burnt and my feet hurt because I played barefoot, which wasn't the smartest idea. But it was a lot of fun. And as I have been actually excersizing every morning it was so much easier to actually play football and not get completely exhausted. But yeah... sorry I didn't email yesterday or last week... power here in Ghana has been really rather below standards this last month or so and that is below Ghanaian standards... which isn't very high to begin with. I think half of the days this week we haven't had power when we come back for proselyting until the next morning. But it is all fun. Today we had a very nice District Meeting and then we went and had some very good fufu. But yeah... all is well in Ghana.
Well, this morning as I was studying, I was studying about Patience. It is such an important heavenly virtue that I know we all can improve upon. If we can develop patience we will be so more effective in every aspect of our lives. There is a talk that I read that is really good by President Uchtdorf, Continuing in Patience. Patience is such an important Christlike attribute that we can all develop and that we should all develop. In Chapter 6 it talks about Christ-like attributes. These are what we should work on improving so that we will simply be better individuals throughout all of our lives.
Well I love you all and I hope that you all have a wonderful week!!
Monday, September 8, 2014
Hello everyone!! This week has been good. It has been interesting. Monday and Tuesday I spent with the Zone Leaders, then Wednesday I spent with Elder Kanongata'a until I received my new companion in the evening. I have been with Elder Mafundityala since then. He is a pretty cool elder from South Africa. He is very tall and I feel sorry for him because everyone butchers his name, including me half of the time. He has been out for seven months now. It is cool. This week was a little crazy working with the different elders, but these last few days have gone well. We are working a lot with new people, trying to refresh our teaching pool. I feel that this last week I have been trying to talk to everyone about the gospel... talking a lot. But that is what is necessary. Sometimes all we have to do is open our mouths and that is all that is needed for that certain individual or person. The gospel can help everyone's life and I must do the most I can with the time that I have been given.
Sorry that this email is short but I didn't realize how little time I had... Dad kept me busy as he kept emailing me. :) I love you all. Know that as we look to the gospel as a source of help and support that it will always be there for that. It can be that constant source of help and support.I love you all and have the best week ever!
Monday, September 1, 2014
Hey everyone! How has the week gone for you? It was been pretty good. It was a little bit hard since we were in the Zone Leaders area lot of the time, but everything went well. On Wednesday I was blessed by having a member, Emmanuel, to come and help me all day. What a blessing that was and we were able to accomplish so much. By far the most productive day of the week. One cool person that we have been able to see is a member, Sister Abvatara, that stays on the other side of Kojokrom. For her she has not been able to come to church for about the last year because her foot has been infected very badly. Even they have cut off all of her toes, and you can see the bones in her foot and on her heal. It isn't the prettiest of sights but what is quite marvelous is her faith. We have been able to take the sacrament these last two weeks. It is amazing to see the faith that she still has in Christ even though she has been confined to her room for the past year because of her foot. I feel that we should all strive to have such faith, such devotion, and such courage. It is really cool to see.
Well, this week our threesome will come to an end. I will be getting a new companion on Wednesday. Elder Mafunityla (I believe this is how you spell it) will be coming to join me here in Kojokrom. He is from South Africa I believe. I am excited to have a companion again and I think that I will enjoy being with him. He has been out for around seven months now. But yeah... I guess that I will find out more about him this week.Sarah, who was baptized last Sunday, was confirmed yesterday and that was very cool. I think that she was very much touched by the Spirit and she was tearing up at the end of it. I am very excited for her. She will be a wonderful member.
Well, one thing that I feel that I have learned this last little bit is that the hard way is the easy way and the easy way is the hard way. Just with little simple things such as excersizing every morning, buying fruits and more vegetables, just simply going the extra mile. The past little bit as I have been putting in more effort, doing more, I feel better and more energized than ever. I know that when we do all that we can, putting in our entire effort, leaving nothing on the table, that the Lord will help us. I feel better than ever and I know that is because I am doing all I can. I am putting in the effort and the Lord is blessing me because of my efforts.
Well, I love you all! Thanks for all the love and support!
Thursday, August 28, 2014
Hello everyone! How are you all? I hope that life is wonderful. It has been pretty good here recently although it was to send off Elder McKeon to Praso and then be put in another threesome again. But I have been blessed by members helping us so I have been able to be in my area all day for three of the five days so far. It is weird working with a companion or with someone that does not know the area and is not learning it, but is just helping you for a little bit. It is sweet though. Sarah, who Elder McKeon and I have been teaching for the last few months was baptized. It was sweet. She is 17 and has a sister who is in the church. She was supposed to be baptized last week but the pipe didn't flow, but everything went well yesterday! I am very excited for her.
But I have worked one day with Elder Shinasi and Elder Odongo each and then I worked with a member, Peter, one of the days. The have been good and productive. It is sweet to see the willingness to help out the work. Peter has only been a member of the church for a year, yet he has a strong testimony and is willing to do all that he can to help. It has shown me that no matter how much we do have the desires, we should be willing to do anything to follow the Lord and to help Him in his work.Today we went to Shama and there is an island just a small ways off of Shama that we went to for a combined Zone acitivity. We went to the beach there and played rugby. That was a lot of fun but I now remember how tiring it is to run in the sand. Or maybe I am out of shape... or both. But it was lots of fun. It is interesting that the island speaks Ewe even though the Ewes are found in Volta Region and now one around speaks it, but it was sweet. It was cool to see how self reliant the community is. But man, am I sunburned.
|Our service project.|
|Me at the chapel.|
|Our recent convert Julie.|
|Sad to say goodbye to Elder McKeon.|
|Sarah who was baptized Sunday!|
|I was able to talk to Elder Adams again.|
|We went to the beach by Shama for our Zone activity.|
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Hey everyone! I hope that you are all doing wonderful! This last week has been good and busy. It started off somehow slow, but it picked up along the week. This week we were supposed to have a baptism for one of our investigators, Sarah, but the water was not flowing so we could not fill the font. But it has been pretty good. We have been blessed as we have been finding our investigators just leaving, getting ready to go somewhere but we have been able to see them and been able to teach them. It has been really sweet. It was nice.We were also able to learn how to make kenke and helped one of our members make some for an activity this past Saturday. It was the All Africa Service Project. I believe that the church across all of Africa gets together in their congregations and does service for the community. So all of Kojokrom, Nketsiakrom, Eshiem, and one of the Mpinstin wards came together and cleaned up the market here in Kojokrom. I was one who got to get in the gutters and clean then out which was filled with nasty sewage like dirt about two feet deep... it was a lot of work... the hardest work that I have done since I was back home but it was a ton of fun. I enjoyed it a lot. It was cool to see all the members come together and be able to help the community. We were able to show the community how much we actually care for the welfare of everyone around us. I enjoyed it a ton. And then we had some amazing banku and okra stew. Then I found out that afternoon that my companion is leaving me. :( He is being called as a Zone Leader to go serve in Praso and since there are ten elders who are leaving two weeks before the transfer, he is going to fill one of the spots. But that means I won't really have a companion for the next two weeks so instead I will be with the Zone Leaders here in Kojokrom for the next two weeks covering both areas. My third threesome so far... it will be fun but interesting.
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
Hey everyone! How is everything going? Hope that everything is great! Things here in Kojokrom are going well. It has been a hard time finding people at home, but we have been truly blessed this week. We have been working with a few people that have a great desire to learn and are very interested in the Gospel. We are planning to have a baptism for Sarah this Sunday. I am excited for her. She is someone that we have been working with for quite awhile. She had two sisters in the church and has been coming for awhile now. It will be a very good experience for her.But yeah... not much really happened this week too out of normal. Just kept on pushing forward. We had a funeral and a wedding in our area that made everyone not available... funerals and weddings are the biggest events here in Ghana... even if you only knew the person just a little bit you go. And they spend so much money on them and the place music that you can hear halfway across town. But it is all good. Just a part of the Ghanaian culture here.
*I, Kristi, apologize for some of the pictures that Trevor sent us...but he sent them, so I am posting them.
|I really enjoyed the pizza stuff you [Mom] sent :)|
|Jollof rice we made with a member.|
|It gets cold in Ghana...|
|My shoe broke :( This was after the second time wearing it :(|
|Roasting the pig.|
|A member made this picture from wood and a sautering iron... pretty cool.|
Tuesday, August 5, 2014
Hello everyone! I hope that you all are doing well. Things are going good here in Ghana. This last week was a hard week proselyting though... lots and lots of walking. A lot of appointments kept falling through, but we were able to make do with what happened. We have been working with a young man named Benjamin, but sadly this week he has been really sick as well as a few of our investigators. But yeah... it still went well. One of our members, Gloria, went and helped us all day twice this week. It was sweet to have her help, but I felt bad because we walked so much. She was so exhausted at the end of the day. But yeah... at least the weather has been nice and cool. A member also made me and Elder Mckeon these cool art pieces... she calls them pyrography which is just a piece of wood that she uses a sautering iron to draw on. She drew the picture of John the Baptist baptizing Jesus and it looks really cool.One interesting news that we found out about this week is that there has been an ebola outbreak in West Africa. We have heard that Sierra Leon and Liberia are closing their missions so we are getting 20 new missionaries this week. That will make things interesting for this mission. It will definitely increase the size of the mission a bit.
Monday, July 28, 2014
Hello everyone! This week has been nice. We went on splits twice this past week... well I guess it wasn't really splits because both times it was both of us with the other elder. On Friday we went on splits with Elder Shinasi... that was fun... we ended up proselyting in both of our areas. We went to Fijai in the morning which we had to take a trotro out to. It was cool... but we only had one lesson out there. Then we came back to Kojokrom and had a pretty good day. We had one of our investigators feed us some plantain ampesi with a kontrumbre stew (I have no idea how to spell it but it is this leaf that is similar to spinach). It was very nice! Then we were fed it by one of our members on Saturday. It is the only meal that I have had that the host or the one feeding us has actually eaten with us. I have only had a Ghanaian eat with me three times and all three times it has been plantain ampesi. It was very nice of them though. We also were fed some very nice fufu yesterday.But I would have to say that the highlight of the week was being able to get to go out with President Stevenson on Saturday. We were told on Friday afternoon that President Stevenson was going to be with us Saturday evening to go proselyting. So he was able to proselyte from 5 pm until the end of the evening. We definitely had quite a few failed appointments but we were able to see two of our investigators, Sarah and Beatrice. They were very good lessons and I very much enjoyed President Stevenson's input in both of the lessons. It was very cool to have this experience. He said that this was only the 8th time that he had been out so far. It was nice.
Monday, July 21, 2014
Hey family! How are you all? I had yet another great week and Elder McKeon and I will be staying yet another transfer together. I am excited for that... that means we will have been together for 6 months at the end of this transfer. It will be pretty sweet and it is nice since the area is going well. We had a few people come to church on Sunday and I think that we will have a baptism coming in two weeks. But yeah... we have been really blessed by the members this past week... we have had help from many many members in the for of proselyting and then they have been providing us with referrals as well. It is such a blessing... I sure love the members here in Kojokrom as they have been truly helping push the work forward. This week we were able to meet President Stevenson for the first time... that was very nice. The interview that I had with him was very short but it was cool to finally meet him. It seems that he is very excited for the the missionary work. He went proselyting with our Zone Leaders after the meeting and I hear that he has gone proselyting with the elders quite a bit, which is very cool. He seems like a very nice man to have as our president.This last week with one of out recent converts, Julie, we have been helping her learn the hymns so we have been going and singing the hymns with her. They don't have someone who can play the organ or piano so every congregation I have served in and been in sing without music... it is pretty cool... the Ghanaians sing load and proud even if there voices are not the best... it is pretty cool... so yeah that is why we have been teaching her the hymns... it has been sweet.
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Hello everyone! This week was sweet! It was a very good, very tiring, and a very productive week. We have been blessed this week with those that we have been able to see and visit with. We have one sweet investigator, Benjamin, who we have been working with quite a bit who is progressing really nicely... he simply loves the things that we teach him. Maybe three or four years ago the missionaries used to be teaching his family and him, but nothing ever came of it. But right now he is 20 years old and he has plenty of friends in the church. There have been quite a few other people that we have been working with that look quite good. We have been getting quite a few referrals but quite a few of them have been younger so we are definitely planning to take our time with them. But things are going up and up... just hope that I get to stay a little longer here.
This week we will have interviews with President Stevenson... it will be my first time meeting him so I am very excited about that. I am excited to see who our president will be for this next year. I think that he will be good for this mission from the things that I have heard so far. I think he is a little more technological as he has already said that we need to write our president's letters online. But we shall see. :)
On Saturday we had a missionary fireside. It was something that the four of us elders in the Kojokrom ward put on. Each of us took a bit of time on trying to help them understand how the members can be more effective and how they can best help the missionary work go forth. It was very good. For me I taught about the how the members and directly help us through teaching, referrals, among other things. But it went pretty well even though it started over an hour late... Ghana standard time... but it was good.Today has been pretty sweet. We had a member, Julie, who wanted to teach us how to make jollof rice so we went to their place and made some jollof.... a ton of it... six cups of rice... so I am stuffed right now, but it was really good. We had not been fed in quite some time and in the past three days we have now been fed twice... fufu and jollof. The members like us (at least I think so) and we are very grateful for all that they do for us. We are very blessed to be able to be in the ward that we are in. They are definitely trying to help in this wonderful work.
Monday, July 7, 2014
Hey everyone! Hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July! Hope that Ashton had a wonderful experience being baptized as well... it is so cool! But he is getting so old! But yeah... this week has been pretty good on this side of the world. We have been working with one of our investigators, Emmanuel. His father won't allow him to come to church... he told us that he is going to work out how he will be able to come to church. He even said that if he has to he will move out and find himself his own place, as he is 20 years old. We are trying to help him and we are planning on teaching his father tomorrow and hope that his father's heart will be softened.
We also had a cool experience with an investigator, Mavis. For her she had been sick and had been having body pains all day. We went and saw her on Thursday night. She asked us if we would "pray" for her before we left. So we explained to her about blessings and gave her a blessing... the next morning she gave us a call and told us that "by the grace of God, I am healed." She was completely better... no pains, no anything. Definitely a experience to remember.
Also we have this very cool member in our ward... his name is Brother Arhin... he is about 68 years old but he loves his Lord and Savior and loves to share the gospel. He is the best member missionary that I have ever seen... he wants to go out with us and help us all he can. Maybe a week or two ago, we were teaching Emmanuel and his sister was calling him over to go pound the fufu for her (not an easy task... gets a little tiring)... but Brother Arhin goes over and does it for him... a 68 year old... but he wants to help anyway he can and he does. Since we have been in this area we have been struggling in getting any referrals, but he has given us 6 people to teach in the last two weeks and they are all people that he has already shared the gospel with. He is such a great example, even to me.
Recently I have been reading "Our Heritage" and it is very humbling to see and read about the pains, trials, and afflictions that the early members of the church had to go through and suffer. From the beginning, people were persecuting them until they had to leave to a different area. They built the Kirtland Temple and had to leave Kirtland just two years later... they just barely completed the Navoo Temple and then they had to leave to go west. They had to go through so much, yet so many of them remained so faithful. So do we have that kind of faith? Where no matter what trials we face, we will be able to handle them. The pioneers were able to face these trials with a cheerful heart because they knew the truth. We should also be able to know the truth with such a conviction. This is what we should all strive for.
I hope that you all have a great week! I love hearing from you and glad to hear that all is well!
With love and care!Elder Walston
Monday, June 30, 2014
Hey everyone! Hope you are all well and everything is going good this wonderful week. I hope that all works out with the move this week. This week for me has gone pretty well... we have been working, working, and more working. We also enjoyed a little bit as we were able to get ground beef and we made hamburgers on Saturday. That was really really nice... haven't really had real hamburger since back home. But yeah... this week I went on splits with Elder Shinasi who is serving in the other side of Kojokrom. That was a cool experience... it is only the third time that I have left my area when going on splits I believe and it was cool to learn from Elder Shinasi. I think the thing that I learned that I need to do more is just to be bold and confident in myself. I need to not try to sweet coat things as much but just say it how it is.
But yeah... we are doing all we can but people are having a hard time keeping their commitments .. a bit of it is family stopping them from doing so. So... we are continuing onward. Today we went and played some soccer at the Takoradi stake center... Sekondi, Kojokrom, and Takoradi we all there. It was fun.... and tiring.... I can't run at all anymore.... my endurance is gone. But it is always good to get out and excersize... some people just take it a little too seriously.
But yeah. Everything is going well. Life keeps on ticking and we just have to make sure that we enjoy life the best we can... and the place were we will receive the most joy is found within this wonderful gospel.
Well... I love you all! I hope that you have a fabulous week. Take care!
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
Hey all! This week has been a good, fun and eventful week. We started off this last Tuesday by going to Takoradi and having a Zone Conference. We met with President and Sister Shulz and learned about our new mission president coming here next week, President Stephenson. It was kind of like their farwell. It was sad to say good bye to the Shulz but they have truly served and done a marvelous work here in Ghana. When we were there Sister Shulz had us do a little activity... she had us all blindfolded and then we had to hold on to the rope and be lead by one of our leaders... there were many things that got in the way, such as bushes, ditches, trees, and whatnot... then at the end they lead us away and they told us to wait for further instruction.... then people started singing "Come Follow Me." So I went there. Sister Shulz compared the activity to life... there will be trials and difficulties that we have to get through and sometimes we can't see them coming or understand why we have to have them but nonetheless... they come. But when we look to the Savior and follow him and his ways, our eyes can be opened and we will see what we have gone through and how the past, if endured well, has lead us to our wonderful reward.Then after the conference on Wednesday morning we went and weeded a plot of land for some of our members. They are planing on building a house for them there... that was a lot of fun. I always enjoy being able to do some physical labor and help the people here... surely enjoyable.
|President and Sister Shulz and I|
|Our service project this week... we went and weeded a member's land.|
|Soccer ball I bought ( I like what it says.... so Ghanaian).|
Monday, June 16, 2014
Hello everyone!! Hope that you have had a wonderful week and I hope that the preparations for moving are going well for you back home. Sounds like everyone is definitely keeping busy back home. We have been busy here as well, but struggling with having the investigators keep their side of things... we ended up dropping 8 of our 12 investigators this week because people weren't ever able to see us or weren't keeping any commitments anymore... I have found that we can only help people the most we can but then it comes to the point that people have to act for themselves... we can't make people act... we have been given agency so we can only help others see the good choices that they can make... but we can't make those choices for them. So we have been trying to work on having this area pick up again.... just as soon as I thought that things were starting to get good again... it took a little dive, but that is life... sometimes it's a roller coast ride :) But all is well... just going to require a little more work. And that is going to be a little harder as the World Cup started this last week... people seem to have the attentions otherwise occupied. and since USA is playing Ghana today... I have been getting people saying that "We are going to score you!" and how USA is going to loose today... I guess time will tell. Interesting that the first match for either side is USA and Ghana. It has been raining a ton this week as well... Elder McKeon and I were drenched on Friday.... completely soaked. And we went Friday after noon to go make fufu for a family in the ward, as we have been trying to work with and serve the members. That was tons of fun, but while I was there I knocked my scriptures off a ledge into a bucket full of the rainwater.... Opps. Luckily they didn't get too wet as the case Mom sent me protected most of it :) But yeah... good thing that I was carrying my old scriptures that day that were already falling apart. But yeah... yesterday was sweet. Our ward had three baptisms yesterday, one of which was a child of record but we have been working with reactivating the family a lot... they were so happy. It was really cool to see. And then we were fed a bit yesterday.... the Relief Society president, Sister Eduful, fed us etil, something like banku. It was really good but then we went to take a member to go to a lesson with us but he insisted us to eat first. And he was eating cat! So we had some nice cat and soup that tasted really nice... cat is probably the nicest meat I had or at least one of the best... it is really similar to chicken. Then we were given coconuts. When I first had coconut, which was my first week I hated it.... it was really nice now. I crave Ghanaian foods now. It is kind of interesting.So recently I have been reading the New Testament and as I have been reading things, events about the life of Christ have become clearer and clearer... funny how that happens. But one thing that I have noticed is how bold Jesus Christ really is. He boldly states the truth, which many find hard to believe as much of it is new to the people he is preaching to. He was showing them the way and how he was sent there to be the way. But he also did it with such humility... he truly is the master teacher. When we look to him we truly will learn a ton.
|My Fante name is Kwabena and this can has my name!|
|Part of an unfinished house collapsed|
|How they collect water|
|Elder Walston waiting to eat cat.|