Monday, August 26, 2013

Pictures Week #64

Giraffe in the road

Elder Brown and Africa are one!

Very Good Week

Oi! Family and Friends,

How is everybody doing? I'm doing good and we got some work done this week for sure. We had some really good lessons this week strengthening recent converts and less active, as well keep helping our investigators along. I don't really remember too much of this week because I just got off the SAFARI, and my brain is a little fried haha, but I will try my best. 

Well we were supposed to have a baptism this last Saturday but it kind of fell through with Antonio. He is kind of weird and crazy but he will get baptized one day for sure. He kept saying that he was convinced that it was all true, but after awhile he finally said he has never prayed about these things. He kind of fought a little bit to get baptized this past Saturday but we shut him down. Sometimes he is frustrating, like I ask him "Did you pray about these things since the last time we talked?" And then he goes off into a 10 minute rant of some random life story. Frustrating but I'm having patience with him. 

Our branch had 9 baptisms this last Saturday so our little branch is growing now, so that's awesome. But we really worked hard and got a good number of lessons in. Sunday we went to Irma Zingas House for lunch and it was a good ol fashion Angolan Dish. Funge, with Kizaka, Feijao and this Chicken in this peanut sauce. It was pretty good. 

Sorry I'm gapping on things right now, we woke up at 4:30 in the morning today because we had to be at the chapel at 6. But today was so awesome, it really felt that I was in Africa. It was really magical too, no kidding. I got some cool pics and videos of some things, and this place is really slow with uploading because I'm not at the usual place I do internet so I might be able to get out one maybe two. But wow, it really is indescribable. Felt I was in the Lion King, it was just so awesome. At the base camp place there were monkeys everywhere so we had some bread and fed the monkeys. They would come right up to you and take it out of your hand, it was soo cool. 

Then we loaded up in these big ol trucks, and off we went. We didn't see all too much, but just being out in the African wilderness was enough for me, and the animals were just a bonus. Well we saw a ton of giraffes. Before we even got to the safari place, a giraffe was just standing in the road, I got a cool pic of that. And there were like 7 of them right there, so cool. We didn't see too many animals, giraffes, monkeys, wildebeast, onix, antelope, cool birds. Only the other truck saw an elephant and apparently it wasn't that cool because it was really old and looked like it was about to die. But overall, I was fulfilled. Check that off my bucket list. African Safari, one of the most awesomest things in the world. 

In two weeks the other Zone is going to go, because it was only our zone. Yeah I'm sure the package should get here soon. So weird that Ridge is going to BYU this week and the season starts up in 5 days. Ahhhhhh. It's also weird I'm hitting my 9 month mark until I'm home, just gotta keep on trucking. And that's so cool that you were extras in the movie and saw Steve Carell and Jennifer Garner. How did you pull that? Well I love you all! I hope you know that:) Have a great week and be safe and follow the spirit! Love you guys:)


Monday, August 19, 2013

Pictures Week #63

At a family night
Cute baby with a ton of hair
Carrolina Family
Kitty cat
Duck Face
Helping Hands
Elder Brown and Antonio

Pretty Swell Week

Oi! Family and Friends,

This week was swell. We had some good lessons, made some good progress in our area, and nothing too bad happen to us this week, hey I call it a success. On Wednesday we had a zone meeting which was pretty good on Faith, Hope and Charity. It was really good and during this meeting I received a revelation about Danilson´s family. It was really cool, but pretty much what it came down to is I needed to make a goal with them to be baptized by the end of the year, which is a big deal because they also have to be married before they are baptized, and marriage here takes a longggggg time. But that's the feeling that I needed to do. 

Well the rest of that day I was with Elder Mariquele on a division in Futungo, and we walked around for like 3 hours because things fell through. Also at this convience store I broke a glass bottle of juice, but it wasn't my fault, the check out place where you put the stuff on was curved at the end, so I wasn't paying attention and set it on that part, so it fell off and broke. And apparently, I didn't see, but the store manager lady apparently had "I'm going to kill someone" face, but then when she saw I was white, she calmed her self. They wouldn't let me pay for it, But c'mon, who makes a rounded edge for something like that, so stupid. Whatever. 

Anyways, Thursday was pretty cool. We passed this new family in our ward who moved from Portugal, where the daughter has like a year or two in the church, the mom and the son is coming up on two months. And us coming over that day must have been an answer to her prayers or something like that, because, I don't know how to explain it, but you just knew she was praying for us. And it's really awesome to be an answer to someone's prayers. To be led by the spirit and the Lord to help make someone's life happier and better, it's the most awesomest feeling in the world. 

We also had the lesson with Danilson to challenge them. And what do you know, the Lord keeps watching out for us, and right before we came, Danilson was studying about baptism in the Teachings of Lorenzo Snow, perfect set up. Well it was really good, we challenged them and taught them about Faith and Miracles, and if we trust in the Lord with all of our hearts, never doubting, anything is possible. It was such an amazing lesson, Danilson felt it, he told me. So were going to keep having faith and help them accomplish this goal. I can't leave Angola without them being baptized, I just can't. I love them too much. 

Saturday was kind of rough but we had Helping Hands in the morning which was helping with a blood drive. I was on the streets with Elder Fontaine trying to get people to come in and donate blood, and it was way harder to ask people for their blood then to hear the gospel, way harder. Also me and Elder Fontaine talked about how to make Disneyland better, because he loves Disney just like me. It was good. 

Our lessons fell through except for a couple, but it was typical Satuday. We did get pulled off the street by this couple, a woman who was drunk and a man that was buzzed. And they wanted to know a little bit about the church, and really try to share their church with us, like converting us. When she was talking to me she held up her hand in this jedi force hand hold, and I knew exactly what church she was from, Messianic. I've already had contract with them, but they go and get this book of the teachings of their Japanese prophet and make me read some stuff. I read a bit, but I stopped, it was dumb. Well at the end of it all, they make me take home their sacred book to read and study, and then I have to come and give back one of these days. So now I have this book at home. It was weird. But yeah that was pretty much the week. 

Yeah the missionaries still meet up for soccer but not at President's house. I got the package, thanks so much! It was so awesome. Everyone loves the new bang expansions as well I love the Mormon Messages. So good and I can't wait for the next package. I am also having some African pants made for me that I will pick up on Wed. I bought some Pano and brought it to a lady to sew, so those pants I was wearing in those one pictures, yeah I should be getting those:) 

Weird that Ridge is going up to BYU and the season starts up here real soon. Time just keeps on going by. Question is will Ridgely still write me at BYU? Haha I hope she gets along with Ana, I'm sure they will. Well that's about it. Hope everything is going good this week, weird that summer is already winding down, haha but it's going to start heating up here in a bit, which I'm not excited about but oh well. Until next week, Love you guys!


P.S. I forgot, but I'm going on a SAFARI next Monday. So I don't know if I will be able to send out an email next Monday, so just be prepared if it comes on Tuesday. And hopefully the Safari works out as well. Also Kell, Ridge, and Kade are getting so big, wow. Cant believe it. Love you guys!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Pictures week #62

No new pictures this week, these two pics were bonus ones we received last week on an unexpected day...
got to love waking up to that!

Elder Brown and Elder Tingey
Elder Brown

Good Week

 Oi! Family and Friends,

This week seemed a bit longer than usual, and a little stressful. Well me and Elder Merkely are together and now and things are going good. Like I said he is a little quiet, but I'm going to do my best to help him with whatever he needs, and learn from him too, I already am. The house is still the same, just a switch with Elder Tingey and Elder Merkley. Elder Tingey got switched to Cassquel, which is an area that I want to go too. I may only have one area left in me, which is pretty weird, possible two. And thanks for the boxes Mom and family:) I can't wait to get them:) 

Well anyways our week went by pretty good, knocking doors, teaching lessons, etc. Nothing too out of the blue, except one thing. I don't know why, but alot of lessons or contacts were just frustrating. Pretty much getting in arguments and making me feel like at least, that it's so stupid you believe what you believe. How could you believe something like that? Being preached too that your wrong. Wrong, Wrong, Wrong. And it really leads you to question, is this all true? You get down to the main core of your faith and testimony, is it all true? Everyone is telling me, it's wrong, your wrong, Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon, wrong. And I've done some soul searching, intense soul searching. And it's true. I know it's true. I watched the full length Joesph Smith Movie last night, and I can't help but shed some tears when I watch it. But if it's all true, why is it so hard? Why is it so hard to believe, and take the Savior´s offer of love and mercy that he is extending through us? 

I love this Elder Holland quote, "Anyone who does any kind of missionary work will have occasion to ask, Why is this so hard? Why doesn’t it go better? Why can’t our success be more rapid? Why aren’t there more people joining the Church? It is the truth. We believe in angels. We trust in miracles. Why don’t people just flock to the font? Why isn’t the only risk in missionary work that of pneumonia from being soaking wet all day and all night in the baptismal font? You will have occasion to ask those questions. I have thought about this a great deal. I offer this as my personal feeling. I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience. Salvation never was easy. We are The Church of Jesus Christ, this is the truth, and He is our Great Eternal Head. How could we believe it would be easy for us when it was never, ever easy for Him? It seems to me that missionaries and mission leaders have to spend at least a few moments in Gethsemane. Missionaries and mission leaders have to take at least a step or two toward the summit of Calvary." 

 And that's what it is all about right there, I really need to print that talk out, which I am. But really it's been a kind of hard week, but all is good. All is well, as we are trying our hardest for the Master. Everyones week sounded really good. Of course Ridgely backed the car into the truck, her and backing up into trucks;) But you can't sell the truck, I love that truck so much, don't sell it please. 

I also cant wait for the Football season, ahhhhhhhhhhhh! Can't wait. And Mom your emails aren't boring, I love them:) Also that shirt that Brother Kohler and Kaden were wearing in that pic, I want that shirt, save one for me. It's really weird that a year ago, I was in Viana. Does not seem like a year ago. And Keller learn a Kid Cudi Song on the Uke, and Kaden get a vinyl record of a Kid Cudi song! Haha I love you guys and miss you so much. Little by little the mission is going by, and before you know it, it's gone. Weird, don't want to think about it. Well I love you guys! Know I'm healthy and well and just trying to do my best:) Have a great week:)


Monday, August 5, 2013

Pictures Week #61

Painting it up
Elder Brown and Irma Carrolina
At the activity
What we gangster
Moto Buddies

1 Year in Angola!

Oi Family and Friends!

Well it's official, I hit a year here in Angola. Kind of weird that a year ago I was in Viana in my first transfer wth Elder Tolman. Time Flies! Well transfer wise I'm staying in Benfica with Elder Merkeley. He is kind of a newer missionary from Colorado, he has been here for 3 transfers. Should be pretty interesting, he is quieter than me so it will be interesting how things shake out this transfer. But yeah that's the big news. 

This past week went by pretty slow actually, usually all last week of a transfer does that. We had a pretty good Zone Conference this last Wednesday that was done way good by President and Sister Merrill. We also had this awesome lesson with Danilson´s family with a member here talking about marriage, because they need to get married. I love all of them so much, and I'm really excited to keep working with them this coming transfer. 

Saturday was so much fun. Early in the morning we went and did a service project of painting this investigator's house named Rita. It was pretty fun, and I love her kids that live there, good way to start off the day. Then we had a lesson out pretty far that we had to hurry to, and we got a free ride in the back of a pick up by this really cool Portuguese guy. Taught our lesson, went really well, and then we were off to the chapel to help set up for this activity that celebrated the African woman. Like usual, the Angolan way, it started later than it should have, but it was so much fun. I got so many cool pics and videos that will be fun to show. It was the African culture that I finally got to see out here, so so cool. 

We then after ate at this turkish restaurant that was so so good. It was a good Saturday, which we don't usually have that often. Sunday was really good, a really good Fast and Testimony meeting, one of the best I have seen out here. 

Earlier today we went out to this way far place called Miradouro da Lua which was pretty cool, quite an adventure getting out there and getting back, but were back safe and sound. Oh and also we have had some pretty interesting door knocking that has been going on, just some funny stuff with dogs or African women who want to get you off their porch as quickly and nicely as possible. Haha funny stuff. 

But also I don't know why but I have seen some traumatic stuff out here, that's kind of messed with me a bit. I don't want to write out the things I've seen, but life isn't fair. We would live in such a depressing world if we didn't have the Atonement of Jesus Christ. While life may appear not fair to us now, we know and have the faith that through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, everything that was unfair and wrong will be corrected and recompensed. That's helped me out a bit. 

It's good that Mom and Ridge and Dad had a good trip out in Europe, and that the boys didn't kill each other. So weird that BYU football starts back up this month, and I can't wait. Pictures are taking real slow, so you will only be getting a couple, sorry. All in all, its going to be weird having a new companion again. Been with Elder Tingey for 4 months and it's going to be weird to be split up, but just gotta keep going and going until the end. Love you guys! Looking forword to the Box:)