Monday, February 10, 2014

Book of Mormon

Bonjour!                                                                                                                         02/10/2014

       Things have gone pretty well this past week!  We were able to get pretty good work done even with the Zone conference being that week, and our baptisms. I forgot to mention last week we’ve been having some bandits breaking into our little area and stealing our stuff. I wouldn’t say they’ve broken in as they simply hopped our wall, but luckily all they stolen were our chairs... Either ways we were blessed as well as we usually don’t lock our roof access in the night, but did this night, and we know they tried to break into the house through the roof, as they stole all the stuff we had left on the roof. Either way I miss my chairs a lot for putting on my shoes.
      Our candidates all finished the lessons well and were able to be baptized this past Saturday, it was nice as there was an activity at the church, so there ended up being a ton of people there for the baptism, so I’m sure the Amis liked having the support!  We have a couple more getting baptized next week, so I’m hoping they all continue to progress well. Most of them are all member contacts, but one in particular was just a guy that stopped us on the road. We get stopped on the road ever day almost, mostly by either crazy guys or Nigerians. But I remember this guy stopped us asking who we were, and what our message was, because he’s been looking for a church, and the Bible isn’t clear enough for him to understand.... Clearly someone who was very prepared! Since then though he’s never ceased to amaze me with how well he’s progressed, his name is Joseph.
       We do have a member contact that is really good, but at the same time he’s done a ton of research on the church, and apparently the best way to do that is by the Internet, so in turn he has found a lot of anti Mormon material... Its not a problem at all, but these people are hard to get to understand that all truth comes from God, rather than men, so why not take his question to God and ask him, rather than searching out his answers in the other ways. He’s a tough one but he is coming along.
     I was looking at it as well, and have seen how amazing some of the members in our ward are. There are many younger members that come from part member families, which is already difficult. But on top of that, many of those families are in big opposition against the church, and others are big on voodoo, which I haven’t seen a problem with really since Benin. I’ve really felt bad for these people in those situations, but at the same time, we know that the greatest blessings come from sacrifice. If we didn’t ask for sacrifice, their faith would never grow.
     Our zone conference this past week was really good as always too! It was a big lesson again on agency, and a lot of what the general authorities presented before us last week. It was awesome though. On Saturday morning, we decided to have a zone activity to help one of the areas that was struggling, so we went to the area and set up some tables, and started a contact getting session for a couple hours. In just two hours we were able to get 140 contacts, no doubt one of the big blessings of being able to serve these people here are who are so open to the gospel!! The work is going well though in general, we have good help as always from the members and things are coming along.
    Things are all good with my companion and we get along well, he’s been teaching me Gnushi as that is really the language they speak in Cote DIvoire rather than French, the problem is its still French, but with many words changed so its kind of a mess but its cool, ha-ha, but hey if I have any Ivoirians in the future I’ll be well prepared!
      All is good here in Africa though! I’m still getting skinnier, I think; even though I’m working out, but it has too stop somewhere but well see!
      A big part I like in the secteur is how much inactive work we have as it keeps us busy. Its a common trend with all of them though, you rarely if ever will find an inactive that still reads their scriptures, and those little things. So that’s always one of the big focuses, we had a really good lesson with one of them this past week named Folly. I remember having always heard that when you testify yourself, it strengthens your testimony, and that is something that I know is very true now having been on the mission. Having the chance to testify of the Book of Mormon every single day is no doubt a big blessing and something, that brings the spirit like none other! That book is incredible! We had a lesson one of the nights this past week in the dark, not too unusual, but luckily on our phone there is a light, so in the lesson everything was dark, and you couldn’t see anyone. And everything was black, except for the light on the Book of Mormon, and I really just started thinking about that literally and how the Book of Mormon really is a light like that in our lives while the rest of the world can be dark, along with the Temple, Church, and things like that.
      I think its interesting too seeing that for the third hour at church the people here are studying the same manual as you are over there. I’m sure it’s a lot different, but you’d be surprised coming to a meeting here, they are pretty impressive.
      Things are all going well here though! I hope all is great there this next week! I love and miss you all a ton!! Thanks for the letters and such!

Elder Oliverson

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