Mighty Osiem District plus Zone Leaders
Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Wednesday, July 5, 2017
Romans 8: 28
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
My Dearest Family,
I am a week behind, but Koforidua became a Stake on June 25th. It was President Heid's last Sunday in Ghana and he spent the weekend with us in Koforidua. Because a Stake was being created from a District we also had our Area President, Elder Vincent from the Quorum of the Seventy, presiding at the meeting. One other Area Seventy came from the Ivory Coast, and the previous Nigeria, Lagos Mission President from Ghana. The four of them were staying in a hotel in Koforidua and Elder Gillam and I were invited to dinner with them on Saturday evening.
So there I was chomping on Pizza and Salad sitting right across from a Quorum of the Seventy. He was telling us stories of going to Mali and Senegal with Elder Bednar to dedicate the land to the preaching of the Gospel. It was great. I spent the most time talking with the Nigeria Mission President from Ghana, Brother Ahadjie. He is a great man and I was so impressed with his story. Brother Ahadjie joined the Church in Koforidua in 1980, three years after it was introduced in Ghana. He was called as the first Bishop in Koforidua and he was in that calling when the "freeze" came. Ghana was under a Military Rule. The Ruler had heard that the LDS Church was teaching that blacks would not go to heaven and that it was teaching against the culture of Ghana. The Military sent soldiers and police officers to the Church's buildings and locked them down. Brother Ahadjie was in Accra and ran to the Mission Office to find his wife but the soldiers would not allow him through the gate. He looked through and saw the Mission President being escorted at gunpoint from the Office to a waiting car. The Mission President saw him and yelled, "Bishop, go take care of the saints in Koforidua." Brother Ahadjie returned to Koforidua and upon reaching his home was arrested and jailed. He spent a few weeks in jail and then on probation for the next few months.
The freeze started in June 1989 and ended in November 1990. He kept on telling us that instead of hindering the growth of the Church, it rather boosted it! Before the freeze, the military had sent spies into the Church to pose as investigators and to find out what the Church was teaching. After the freeze ended, most of the spies joined the Church! Many of the soldiers that were guarding the buildings picked up Church materials and began reading. They too joined after the freeze. He talked to one guard as they were searching the Mission Office and the guard said, "It looks like you are operating a Kingdom on this Earth." All he could say was yes, yes we are.
I love to look at the spiritual side of this. Many of us are facing challenges that look like they are moving us backward, that we are losing ground, that we are regressing and becoming less. But as Romans teaches us, everything will work together for our good if we just trust in God. You are His work and His glory. He created you and you are what brings Him the greatest joy. Love Him and trust that the obstacles that come are there to grow you, to move you forward on your path to becoming.
I love you all and thank you for the support over these many months. Keep moving forward with Christ.
Monday, June 26, 2017
Monday, June 19, 2017
Monday, June 12, 2017
Sunday, June 11, 2017
May 29th, 20017
John 8: 29
“And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.”
Family and Friends,
I have a new companion!!! Elder Gillam from Tehachapi, California has been called to be my eternal companion (we call the missionary that we finish with our eternal companion.) He is awesome. He is 20, just a few weeks older than I, and a small town boy. He is a parkour master so I got to see him do some back flips today at an activity, we will see how much I can learn. But the best thing is that I have a workout partner now in the morning! And he is a wonderful missionary as well.
Two of our Districts in Koforidua Zone got together today and killed a pig. We have three Polynesians in our Zone so they made quick work of this four month old pig. You just cut the throat, gut it, put a stick running from the mouth to the back end, and roast it over the fire. Elder Flan II and I cooked the jollof-rice and we had quite the feast.
Missionary work has been the greatest blessing in my life. As you serve others you are given the opportunity to forget about yourself and your personal desires, and to give of your heart to others. You give and give and give and most often you don't find much in return, but it helps you to appreciate the good that we have. This Sunday after Church we were able to go out with our Relief Society Sisters to visit some of the sick and less active sisters. I love the Relief Society because they remind me so much of my Grandma, Mother, and my Sisters. They give me great advice, help me see things that I can do better, and are living examples to me of giving your life to Christ. Our Chapel is about a 15 minute walk from our Area and the Sisters just gird up their dresses and walked in the afternoon sun to visit those in need. I was so impressed with their desire to do the things that God has asked of them. They visited three sick sisters, teaching them and helping them to feel loved, and then acting in faith with us as Elder Gillam and I blessed them. And I've never seen a happier group of Sisters.
We are sons and daughters of God. We have power to act and choose to be as God is. God has not left us on this Earth alone to suffer and grind each day away. Our Heavenly Father is with us, He will never leave us alone, and He has put us here to find joy and to learn the good from the evil. But He is with us as we are with Him. Always do those things that please God and feel of His love and power in your life.
I love you all. Remember who you and what you can become.