Saturday, May 31, 2014

Ghana Stories

On Tuesday Terry and I headed out at 6:00 A.M.  to Asamankese it takes about 2 1/2 to 3 hours to get there. The Elders apartment was pretty clean but this is NOT how you upkeep your water filter. 

They have clean filters, schedules of when they are to change them. Almost every Zone Conference, Terry has a little demo how to change filters and upkeep them. Do Not show this picture to Water Tech People.

We then drove to Kade, the Elders were happy to see us, they are about an hour further away, and not very many people come to see them, they were probably especially happy to see their mail. Terry fixed an important outlet to the water pump that was shorting out. Teach your boys to change electrical outlets, it will be important to know some time in their lives. We then drove on to Oda in a very heavy rainstorm. The Elders there were doing well, except for water, even the well that was dug is dry. We were glad to see the rain, that means the dry season is over and the rainy season is starting. This country needs a good rainy season.

In case you do not know what this building is for (they may not because this is only the 2nd public toilet that I have seen) here is a picture!!

These cute girls all dressed up, someone's ward in the U.S wanted to make pillowcase dresses for these girls, they all wear very nice dresses that are 2nd hand from the U.S. or Europe, but they are very very nice and some of very fancy. the older girls have their's made by a mother, aunt or "Taylor" . They told me they wanted white skin, I told them, that most people like Chocolate, better than Vanilla and they had lovely chocolate skin and I had plain old vanilla.

Here is cute  Michelle she used to be in the nursery now she is too old, but she still gives me hugs all the time.

This is funny event a couple told in our group therapy session ( Sunday night dinner with several missionary couples) They were just sitting in church starting to sing the opening hymn, when a van stopped outside the church and a group of 10 men jumped out , they all had on matching orange T-shirts. They came right into the chapel and started to lift and take the organ away. The T-shirts read - Gaa committee for noise Abatement.  We found out the Gaa's who are a tribe here, have a month that they think there should be silence . The Bishop paid them off and they left the Organ. I hope they are safe this week. We all had to laugh because, there are Muslim churches all over that yell over their loud speakers at least 5 times a day. And then at the makets, there is yelling or "singing" over microphones. And of course all the Pentecostals are playing drums, singing and clapping.    

Now if they had this guy in their congregation, I could see their point. -Shadrak with new sunglasses

This is the Branch President of the new Branch in Nsawam - Aduagyiri  sounds like atta-jury.
He told me last week how he became a member of the church. When he was 8 years old he and his parents were members of the Anglican church, his little sister who was 5 was going to the LDS church with some of their parents friends. When she came home, she told him, everyone got bread for the sacrament, he is a young man that likes his food and he decided that he would go with his sister to church so he would get some bread. So he started going, when he was a teenager, his Mom started going to church with them also, because her boy was such a good boy and was going to go on a Mission.Now many years later his Dad is joining the church. 

The rainy season is supposed to be the coolest time of the year?? Good time for a visit to Accra ! 

Saturday, May 17, 2014

New Teeth

Above is our newest group of missionaries (14)  They all look fresh and excited to be here!! We are excited to have them here. What is this, some new kind of super hero - wearing a bike helmet and swim googles? What should we call him?
 We are at a zone conference and Elder Wall is trying to make the subject of wearing a bike helmet every time you get on a bike sound exiting. That talk is followed by how to clean your apartment, especially your bathroom is even more exciting.
Of course Sister Wall gave an exciting talk about following up on referrals and filling out baptism records correctly.

We had a Stake Conference a couple of weeks ago, it was great. There were too many people to have it at the Tesano Stake Center, so we had it at the Christenborg Stake Center. There were lots of people there, our Stake is only 2 years old. We were reminded that 1/3 of all the units created in the church this last year were in West Africa. The conference had some media people invited and they even had the whole conference broadcast on TV.
These are our assistants to the President , one is from South Africa, and the other is from Kenya. They are both going home soon and we will miss them. They take Terry to some missionaries lessons, he likes to go last week, we went to a baptism of a gentleman he taught.

These are our Office Elders. Both of these tall young men are both from Australia. They crash the Aussie breakfast at the Embassy  and they have a Aussie flag hanging up in the van they drive. They do talk a little funny until you get used to words like "bloke" and "shelia". They help us and the President take care of those 140 Elders.

I have Terry sideways - does anyone know how to rotate a picture once it is on the blog. I cannot take it off and start over again, because it took me 4 hours to download 8 picture. Yes our internet is very slow. We are sad because we have not been able to Skype our children and grandchildren this week. Terry took 5 broken fans and made 3 good fans out of them. All the missionaries have to have a fan, it is so hot and they do not have air conditioning.When there is "lights out" then they do not even have a fan.

But Charles does have new teeth! He is very happy with them, the Doctor told him he could eat anything!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Missionary Work

It has been a month since our last blog, partly due to being busy with trips to the hospital for a ward missionary serving full time in one of the mission areas.  He did not wear his helmet and had a serious bike accident, knocking out 4 front teeth and breaking his pallet. He spent almost two weeks with us, Heidi trying to figure out what he could eat and blending or mushing everything for him while regulating his pain medicine and for the first night waking him for medication and observation for a possible concussion.  Thank heaven he is on the mend and is home.  I do not know about Heidi but I for one am still very tired.  We do have a new poster in his honor: "Charles says; wear your bike helmet".  This week we had a day without bikes to reinforce the need to wear helmets and be safe with safety equipment.  We hope the missionaries will respond.  The Lord is good and merciful as we had two other bike accidents this week, one involving a Trotro.  Nothing major, like Charles, just scrapped arm and banged-up shoulder. and we are so very grateful.

Our Saturdays( Preparation day) have been full with Branch activities, and we have had some wonderful teaching opportunities.  I have been teaching in the evenings with our Assistants to the President, a wonderful brother Steven Kwaku, he is planning on becoming a member of the Church on the 10th of May.  He is about 62 years old and is so very open to the gospel teachings.  He reads his bible faithfully, attends to his family that all live in a compound, with 3 dogs, 12 cats (no mice) some rabbits and chickens and as near as I can count 6 grandchildren.  We teach in the confines of the compound sitting around in 4 plastic chairs.  His wife is often found doing the dishes in a baby bath bucket just outside their door.  I am sure because of so many feet in the compound it is void of anything green growing, except happy and sweet grandchildren.  Their home and his 3 children's homes, attached to one another, are built out of lap wood siding with the wall of the compound being one of the walls, the roofs being corrugated tin. The compound walls here are made of a cinder block.  Bro. Kwaku is a plumber and has the broadest smile but no front teeth, he lost them when he fell 4 stories and the platform boards he was standing on fell on his head.  I called him Abraham as he is a man of faith.  When taught the Word of Wisdom and challenged to live it, he responded yes, my wife doesn't want me to drink anyway.  Because of his love for others and being anxious to share his happiness he went to the bar where his friends meet and told them drinking alcohol was not good for them, they of course ridiculed him but that slid off his back.   Last night when taught about eternal marriage, he simply ask about Adam and Eve's marriage, and pondered on the blessing of family forever together. He asked about taking multiple wives, a practice common here, and then answered his own question by stating two wives bring twice the headaches and laughed. He is a man who loves people.

On Thursday Heidi and I had the blessing of sharing a gospel message and answering questions for Hannah, one of the temporary guards here at Coco Palms.  Elder and sister Curtis had taken her to church and shared gospel teachings, when she was a full time guard here.  She had wonderful questions and we were happy to share the story of the restoration of the gospel with her.  We are arranging for the missionaries in the Accra Mission to take her to church.  It is obvious that she reads the bible.          

   I thought I would mention that Charles will be back this week as he is getting a bridge made.