Monday, January 26, 2015

Remembering all that the Lord has done for us even in difficult times.

Bonjour,                                                                                                         01/26/2015

        This past week has been pretty good. We had the transfer in the apartment bringing in Elder Bilau, who I lived with earlier on the mission, and Elder Mutombo, making 3 Congolese in our apartment. Woo hoo Ha-ha, its been good though as they are all nice, but we end up eating Congolese Fufu every single day now, but it will make the food when I get home that much better.
         This week has been good with the work as well. Its been hotter than ever, and our sectuer is very vast, extending all the way out to the west and north with no limits, so we’ve been exhausted, but luckily my companion is in good shape and is willing so we’ve been able to work a ton like usual! We’ve spent a lot of the week getting our candidates ready for baptism this next week. The one I’m really looking forward to is Alfred, again this week we saw how prepared he was before we got to him, as we taught him the commandments. He left coffee with no problem, and explained to us that he committed 7 years ago to respect the law of chastity, and actually knew what it was, so he had no problems with that either, it was incredible. And really the only question he had was how he could pay his tithing. He will be a huge blessing to the church here no doubt, as he is super zealous so we just have to set that in the right direction. He is a professor though so he knows how to teach, and he speaks English, so he already has many good talents that will help the church in Calavi. He is more than ready for baptism and has already promised to bring many other people in the church as well. And before we ever even talked about the organizations in the church, he was asking us how the church helps the youth (youth programs), and how we help new converts stay (home teaching) so he was interested to see that we already had all of his ideas in place. So things are good in the secteur.
       This past week we had a young woman stop us on the road and explain that she was baptized 5 years ago in Menontin, and then moved to a little village area past Calavi, and hasn’t been to church in 3 years now, so now that she has ran into the missionaries she was happy to see how we could help here, so we fixed an appointment on Saturday. We fixed it that day as we were already planning on the 45-minute walk to the village to see another new convert. So we got there to Kansounkpa, then called her, and she told us to continue on the road till we arrive at a school. We started walking not thinking it could be too far, then after walking for 30 more minutes we arrived at the school. When we got there we called again, and she came and met us and took us on another 15-minute walk to her home. So all in all we got pretty much as far as you can get west of Calavi in an area called Zoundja. It was awesome though as it turned into more jungle and was gorgeous out there. It was interesting as the people were a lot friendlier than those in Calavi, and on top of that there aren’t already any churches out there. Obviously we will have to wait, as I doubt that many people there will be able to make the voyage to come to church, but it was cool to see how interested they were in talking to us.
This past week was the departure of Elder Avana the first missionary leaving from our branch here. He’s going to Ghana and the last gift I gave him before leaving was I taught him how to tie a tie, so he was pretty happy about that. The work is going great though. I’m going to miss it a ton. Lately I’ve been noticing a lot more of those things that I will really miss from Benin and Africa that I won’t have back home, especially the people and their kindness. There is this older recent convert that is in our secteur that can’t walk named Paulette. Because of that she can’t really come to church each Sunday, but she reads the Book of Mormon better than any member I’ve ever seen. I got her the Book of Mormon picture book for the primary to help her better understand what she reads, and every time we come now she will recount all the Book of Mormon storied ‘IN DEPTH” to us. Ha-ha its pretty awesome, and I even pick stuff up when we study the scriptures with her.
        Today my companion and me stayed at the apartment, and I spent most the time writing letters to my recent converts in Togo; as I won’t see them before leaving. It was interesting as the stuff I was writing was the same stuff that applies to me as well in persevering to the end, and in remembering all that the Lord has done for us even in difficult times, so it was a good help to me as well to remember those things. Another good news was that Ghanaian family that me and Desvergez always taught, the father Larry is the new Branch President in Gbegamey, so we were happy to see that as well. I love my companion.            Its been good for me as its made me study the basic doctrines of the church more as he has a lot of questions as it is somewhat new to him. Its nice finishing with him though as he is very willing to work! Things are going great here though. I love and miss you all a ton!

Elder Oliverson

One of the only churches we found out past Kansounkpa.
Off too Zoundja.

Elder Destribois fell asleep.

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