Monday, February 24, 2014

February 24, 2014

Well family this week was a very good week. It started off not so hot though. This week we were planning to baptize Cynthia Tarplah because her and her husband finally got there Marriage certificate complete. Well we were filling out the baptism record and ran into a problem concerning the marriage part and come to find out they have to have the ceremony before they can be baptized. So we ended up having to push here baptism back once again. Kind of frustrating but it will be alright because there marriage ceremony is on Saturday so we will be able to baptize her on the 8thof March. She took it really well to when we told her that we had to postpone. She understood that things need to be done the right way and was totally cool with it so that was good. Well Friday we had to go into all the way into town because Elder Cottrell had this weird thing on his leg that has been there for like a month so they finally decided to get it checked out at one of the clinics. It was really inconvenient because sister Kirkham just called us right as we were sitting down to teach a lesson and we already had a full day planned out. Plus we had already had to go that way that morning because we had to go and pick up district funds. Well we were blessed, we had to get a cab all the way into town and the cab that picked us up was driven by a member. The ride took us about 45 minutes and while we were in the cab we totally taught a lesson to a women in there and the driver helped us out haha. It was sweet. Plus when the driver dropped us off we asked him how much we needed to pay him and he just told us “see you at the temple” and took off so we didn’t have to pay a single dime to get out there. Well It all turned out good though, It took the whole day but luckily nothing is killing Elder Cottrell so that is good. Well I have been telling you about one of the Member family’s that is in our branch, things took a turn for the worse with them this week. The husband and wife have just been having difficulties for a while and one day we passed by and the husband sat us down and wanted to talk to us. Well he just started going off on how the wife is doing everything wrong and just basically blaming all the problems they are having on his wife. Well all the problems they are having are not even close to the wives fault. This guy is just so freakin prideful and hard headed he cant see that he is wrong and that he is the one who is causing problems. He is literally tearing his family apart and he just cant see it because of his pride. Me and Elder Cottrell tried to tell him that he needed to humble him self but he just kept trying to tell us all the things that he was doing right. It is so sad to see. Well on Friday the wife wanted to go and see one of her other daughters who lives some where else and the husband told her no (for no reason) So she finally just took there smallest daughter and left. She told the husband she was going but I guess after she left he went to the police and tried telling them that she kidnapped her daughter. Anyways the saddest part is the other two daughters that are living at home. They are 13 and 11 years old and they know what is going on and we talked to them and they just basically said that there dad love to build him self up and then to tear others down and they know that it is tearing the family apart. Plus the dad has been drinking. Honestly, the drinking is what is causing all these problems. Anyways it is just really sad to see that because a year ago this family was preparing to go to the temple. SO please keep them in your prayers. We did make some progress though, he came to church yesterday for the first time in a year so that is some progress I guess. Anyways, we had another baptism this week and it was awesome. We did it to our branch building which is the first time we have done it there. We usually go to the district center but it was really cool because the font is outside. You will have to see if you can see it dad if you find it on google earth. Anyways the baptism was really good and he showed up to be confirmed yesterday so I was happy about that. Baptism are always sweet. This week church was freakin awesome. We had 11 investigators show up to church. I was strait up pumped. And we had a member from the district presidency come and announce that the Bushrod Island district, which is our district, is shooting to become a stake in July. J That would be the sweetest thing, so we are all pretty excited about that. Well this week we also found 3 sweet new investigators. There names are Kellfalla (we call him Kelo), Emile, and Dennis. These three guys are all from Seirra Leone and if you looked at Kelo and Emile you would think that we got them strait from the prison haha. Back in Seirra Leone, Kelo told us that he used to be a part of the Crypt gang. You know the gangs, the Bloods and the Crypts. Ya pretty crazy. Him and Emile are all Tatted up and have sleaves and just look like thugs. Emile has long Dread locks just looks like a gangster. Dennis, we just met him on Saturday night and he came to us on the road and said he wanted to give his life to god so we invited him to church and he strait up came.  Haha anyways, we sat down with these guys and they are SOOOO receptive to the gospel and they all want to change there lifes and come to Christ. Well needless to say, they all three came to church yesterday and LOVED it. I am pumped to sit down with these guys and teach them some more. I hope I can stay another transfer after this because we are finding so many good people to teach and things are just great. I am loving it. O ya thanks for all the letter and stuff, I finally got Brooke and Wyatts Christmas card so MERRY CHRISTMAS haha thank you though. Well I hope you all have a great week. I love you all. And hope that things are going great. Love
Elder Bowring

February 17, 2014

Dear Family,
Well this week was really good. First off we had a zone conference on Tuesday which was sweet. The area president of West Africa came and spoke and talked to us. He is a part of the first quorum of the seventy. It was so awesome and he was just a really sweet guy, I learned a bunch. Well when somebody like that comes to talk to us, afterwards they like to interview a few missionarys. Well we got a heads up that he might come and interview some of us but I thought that there was no way that I would because of how many missionarys there were. Well turns out that I got chosen to be interviewed. Talk about freaking out. I was so nervous, I was just thinking what the crap did I do wrong, why does he want to talk to me but it turned out to be a really sweet interview. He just told president Kirkham that he wanted to interview a few misisonarys and to have him give him a list so president Kirkham just picked some people for him. In the interview he just basically talked to me and then just asked me a few questions about my mission and what not. He totally knows where Blanding is and knows all about the Monticello temple and all. It was a really cool experience.  Well things in Banjor are just going sweet, I hope I stay here for ever haha. This week Blamo wasn’t feeling to well so he called us over to give him a blessing. After that we sat down and talked to him and it is so awesome to see how blessed his life has been from accepting the gospel. For one you can just tell on his face how happy he is.  And plus he has just opened up a new shop where he fixes phones and what not. Its pretty ghetto to say the least but I guess everything is here but he is just starting off and he is having such good business and he told us that he knows that he is having success because he pays his tithing. He is seriously so awesome. Also we went out to the Tarplahs this week and the father was telling us that ever since we baptized Jamell, he has been a new person. Hearing stuff like that really just pumps you up. PLUS, the Tarplahs finally got there marriage licence this week so they are now legally married and we are going to baptize sister Tarplah this week J I am so excited, I have been waiting for this one ever since I came to Banjor. It is so awesome to see people putting there faith into action and doing those things that will make them happy. On Friday we had a district service project and that was really good. We just went to our first councilors house and cut his grass for him. Here to cut grass you have to use what they call a whipper, and you have to basically just cut it all down by hand. I think there is a few pictures of me using one on the card I sent home.  I am never going to complain about a lawn mower again my whole life haha.  Blamo came with us to help us with the service project.  I felt so bad because I just text him and told him we were doing  a service project and told him where to meet us and what not and he agreed to it. Well he didn’t exactly know what a service project was so he showed up all nice, with his shirt and tie, nice polished shoes and everything. I felt so bad that I didn’t really explain to him that we were working, but I all worked out in the end. Our first councilor had some clothes for him so it was good. Well this week on Saturday we had a n emergency transfer in our district. Elder Enwukwari finally left Banjor and we received a new Elder, Elder Osunebi. He is also from Nigeria. I guess something was going on between him and his companion so they did an emergency transfer, it had nothing to do with our district. He seems like a really cool and sweet guy though so we will see how things go there.  Also on Saturday, a RM in our branch was getting married. She always comes out and works with us and stuff so we got invited to the wedding. She also asked our zone to do something for the reception (which was right after) so we deceided that we wanted to do the Haka because Elder Finau knew a really sweet one. So we totally did the Haka at a wedding reception haha, we went all out to. We tied some Lapa’s (basically skirts) and got some make up and painted our faces all tribal. It was sweet and the Liberians had never seen anything like it before so they were all freakin out about it and thought it was the coolest thing. It was really fun. Well anyways this week was awesome and I am excited for this next week. We have 2 baptisms this week, both in the Tarplah family. The wife and then one of there good friends I guess you could say. We are finding so many sweet people to teach though so I am really excited to start progressing with them. We had 9 Investigators to church this week so that was awesome. Anyways I hope you all have a great week. Love you all.
Elder Bowring
Dear mom and dad
Well there is just a few things that I could use, I don’t know when you are planning on sending another package but just whenever ever you do could you get a few things for me. I am on my last 2 bottle of juice plus so I was wondering if I could get some more of that. It really is good. I can barley sleep past 6 some mornings.  I always wake up full of energy. And could I get some more heads for my razor. I am not out yet but here in the next month or two I will be. I only have like 1 or 2 left so I want to just be safe. And one more thing, one of the missionaries from Ghana was wondering if he could get one of those Pocket missionary reference  books, you know the little blue one you sent.  Well love you guys both a tons. Looks like you had a very eventful week from the pictures you sent. I hope you both have a great week. Love you tons. Your son
Elder Bowring

Elder Bowring and companion/Elder Cottrell

February 10, 2014

Well family this week was a good week and I hit my 6 month mark on mission. CRAZY. I cant belive that I have been out here for 6 whole months.  We celebrated last night with some peach cake which was freakin goodJ Anyways, this week started off a bit down. On Wednesday towards the end of the day I got the worst head ache. My head had been hurting me a little bit when we went out but I didn’t think it was that big of a deal, but by the end of the day I could barley see straight. Luckily we didn’t have to come in early and I was able to just finish out the day but by the time we got home I just hit the bed. I finally asked for a priesthood blessing so the other Elders came in and gave me a blessing. From the blessing I just had to much comfort come over me and I knew that everything was going to be good. The rest of the night I just layed low and in the morning I woke up and my head was still hurting but not as bad. Well we went out to teach and after a few lessons I noticed that my head just wasn’t even hurting anymore. I know it was because of the blessing that I received. I don’t know why my head hurt, I was totally hydrated and everything. It was weird but I was so thankful for that blessing. Well I think I have told you about the Mathew family before, they are such a sweet family but the father is kind of back sliding a little bit. We honestly stop there every day to there house. Its like a check point for us and they love to feed us so that’s good J Anyways, he has been telling us forever that he is going to come to church but he still hasent been there. It was the saddest thing, this week one of his daughters (Surprise is her name) said she had something for me and Elder Cottrell. She gave us a note and so we read it back to the apartment. It said that her dads behavior has changed a lot over the last few months and he is not acting Christlike any more and she asked us to please keep him in our prayers. It was the saddest thing to read, his own daughter noticed how bad he is acting so please keep him in you prayers. Anyways we had another baptism this week. We baptized a members daughter. For the baptism we had a miracle. We told her and her mother to be there by like 9 or 9 30 because the baptisms start at ten. Well we got there at about 9;15 and they weren’t  there yet but I wasn’t to worried. Well the young Women 1 councilor got there at like 9 45 and she still wasn’t there. So we waited and waited and still nothing. I was starting to get disappointed and then it hit about 10. Me and Elder Cottrell decided we would go on a rescue mission and go and get her and bring her to the baptism. Right when we got to the front of the chapel to grab a bike, here came Blessing and her mom rolling up on a bike. I was so happy, so we were able to have an awesome baptism. For the baptism I had to wear the SKINNIEST freakin baptism pants.  I brought my own but I didn’t think we were going to have a baptism so I loaned my pants to an Elder whose pants didn’t fit him good. So when blessing showed up, he already had my pants on, so he gave me his to wear. Skinny jeans to the max, I thought I was going to rip the pants when I dipped blessing down into the water haha. It was all good though. I was able to confirm her on Sunday as well and we were able to confirm Jamell Tarplah from last week and give him the Aaronic priesthood so that was way cool. Well this week end I had a pretty cool experience. Our district has been doing good but on Saturday some little things came up and there was a little contention in the distrtict so I decided to get everyone together and just talk about what has been bugging people and just talk and get everything out. Well everyone cooperated well except one Elder. He just put his head on the table and said that he didn’t have anything to say. Well i have been trying my hardest to try and just have peace in our district so I brought up this situation to the zone leaders in follow ups and they told me that they suggested that I should try and show more love and have long suffering. Well that night I prayed and asked heavenly father to show me some opportunities to serve the people in my district and be able to do those things to help them. Well Yesterday morning I was washing my dishes after breakfeast and I noticed that this Elder  had a few bowls he hadn’t washed yet. The thought came to my mind that I should wash them for him but I thought “no I have done them for him before and he doesn’t even notice my effort” Well I finally decided to do them for him. Well about 30 minutes later he came into my room and he asked me if I washed his dishes for him and I told him that I did. Then after he told me thank you. That thank you meant so much and after that I could really just tell a difference, not only in just him and my self but in the whole district. Really comes to show you that Heavenly father is just right there willing to show us the way if we are willing to just humble ourselves and ask him for the help we need.  Well anyways that was about my week for this week. Tomorrow we have zone conference and we have the President of the West Africa Area coming and talking to us so that should be really good, I am excited for it PLUS we get free food and a lot of it (probably the most exciting part of the whole thing haha jk but is exciting) I hope you all have a wonderful week. I love you all.
Elder Bowring
Dear mom and Dad
Well I just want to say how much I love and appreciate you guys. I know at times it might not seem like I appreciate it and I don’t get to email you all personally to much but I just want to let you guys know that I think about you everyday and the things you guys taught me as a kid. You guys did such a great job at raising me and I learned so many important things in life. I try and take that into being a district leader and I honestly don’t know how you guys did it haha. You guys honestly are the best though. I love looking at the pictures of you guys  and our family and just thinking about how wonderful and amazing we have it in our family. It means the world to have parents who are sealed in the temple and keep there covenants with eachtother and just love eachother. You guys are bar none the greatest examples in my life and you are both my heros. I love you guys so much and I hope you are just having an awesome wonderful time at home. I hope that work is going well for both of you and that things with the family are going well to . I miss you everyday but I know I am where I need to be. Love you guys so much and thank you for all the support I have had the last six months. You guys are the best, Love you son, Elder Bowring

Saturday, February 8, 2014

February 3, 2014

I'm sure Elder Bowring enjoyed eating this Crawdad!!

Elder Bowring-Jamell Tarplah-Elder Cottrell
Love this picture!!  Bobby made a new friend!!

Elder Bowring loves service projects.  They have their tools in hand ready to go!

Well family this week has just totally flown by. It’s crazy how fast the weeks go by. Well last week on Monday we went to a basketball court that is in our area. We were supposed to meet Blamo and a few of his friends there to play basketball but he didn’t end up making it so it was me and my companion and Elder Finau and his companion. There was a team using the court when we got there and they were practicing so me and Elder Finau hopped in and practiced with them. It was fun, we did the 3 man weave and a few other drills and then we scrimmaged. Liberians actually don’t play to bad of ball and it was really fun. Well this week we have been teaching this LA man. His name is Dr. Richard. He is an awesome guy but he had some health problems and that allowed him to back slide. We had an awesome lesson with him this week. His wife isn’t a member and only one of his daughters is so we were talking to him about familys and some things he can do to help his family. We have a guidebook that we use that is called the family guide book so I whipped that out and went over family scripture study and family prayer with him. After we did that he said that he has been looking for something like that for a long time.  It's amazing how the spirit just guides us to the things that people need to hear and the things that people need help with. Really shows you that this is our Heavenly Fathers work. Anyways this week we got hooked up with a bunch of fresh pineapples from one of our members.  They have a pineapple farm and so she gave us like 3 pineapples with some Plantains (Banana fruit type thing, its really weird its like a mix between a banana and a potato.) So we have been living off pineapples this week which I am totally fine with. On Wednesday it was Elder Cottrells Birthday so we went hard. We bought some things to make Breakfast burritos. It costed an arm and a leg but it was totally worth it. We even had Bacon. I thought I died and went to heaven.  It was also Elder Finau’s birthday on Thursday so we extended it and had some Peach/cherry Cobler. That also costed an arm and a leg but it was so worth it. I honeslty couldn’t finish it because it was so sweet but I enjoyed it. We had a service project  on Friday and it was sweet. We were clearing out like jungle again. We had to chop a few palm trees and had to just clear out a bunch of stuff but it was awesome. After the service project we were all sitting there chilling waiting for our food and some Jehovah witnesses came walking up the road so we all took off our tags and they stopped by. So we all sat down with them and they were trying to teach us . We acted just normal but we were asking them a bunch of questions out of the bible that they just couldn’t answer so finally they just said that they had run out of time and needed to go hahaha. Before they left we introduced our selfs and gave them a pamphlet to read. It was funny because one of the guys with them was really interested in the pamphlet me gave him haha. This Saturday we baptized Jamell Tarplah. He is The Tarplahs nephew but he lives with the family. It was an awesome baptism and right after he came out of the water he  just smiled and knodded his head and was just like “yeah”. It was so awesome. Unfortunaltely he showed up late for church yesterday though so we have to delay him a week to receive the holy ghost. So his baptism just still isn’t complete. The Tarplahs are supposedly getting there wedding certificate today so I am praying that that doesn't fall through because if it doesn't that means we can baptize the wife and they can start preparing for the temple.  Well we got our transfer news on Saturday night also and ………………………………. My district is staying the exact same. So for the first time on my mission I finally get to stay with my companion for more than one transfer haha. Pretty crazy but I am excited. This will be Elder Enwukwaris like 7 or 8 transfer here so he is getting pretty sick of the area but we will make it all work. I am glad I am staying and that me and Elder Cottrell and staying together. We are really working together well and are starting to really get some productive people in our area so I am excited. Well anyways that was about it for the events of the week. I love you all very much and I hope that you all have a wonderful week. I love the gospel so much and I am so thankful that we have it in our lifes to bless us. It is so comforting to have the gospel show us the path we need to follow and if we follow that path then we have nothing in the world to worry about, regardless of our circumstances.  Anyways you guys are all awesome. Have a great week. Love
Elder Bowring
Dear mom and Dad,
Well this week was very good.  I ended up giving that Camera to Elder Finau for his Birthday because he only had like 6 months left and his camera got stolen at the first of his mission so ya. Also I lended that little piano keyboard thing to a sister in the branch. She is learning how to play the piano and somebody who was in the branch who is back in America sent her some piano books to keep on practicing so she is going to use that to practice until we get our keyboard fixed in the branch so she was really excited about that. Anyways that’s about it for this week, I love you guys both soo much. You guys are so awesome, I am more thankful everyday for the way that I was raised. You guys are awesome. I am going to try and get some pics uploaded today so cross your fingers JJ Love ya. 
Elder Bowring