Thursday, August 28, 2014

August 25, 2014

Dear Family,
Well this week has been another good week in Ghana. It went by really
fast and we are working really hard. The work is defintily a lot
different here though. Back in Liberia we had so many people who were
serious and progressing to baptism but here since we had to basically
start over in the area we are still looking and finding those people
who the lord has prepared for us. It is defintly something that I am
still getting used to but it is going good. In Liberia we really
didn’t have to like contact and find people because we had so many
people who brought people to us, but here its not like that. I think I
have contacted more people these last few weeks then I have  my entire
mission put together. We have even faced some pretty strait forward
rejection which was new to me haha but it was kind of funny and we
just laughed them all off.  I really do feel like the lord is leading
us to the people who are ready to hear to gospel though. This week on
Thursday we got bounced so much, it just seemed like all of our
appointments fell through. It was getting a little frustrating but
because of those bounces we were able find some really good people who
I feel like the lord is preparing for us. One of them is a young
family. The husband Bro prince, and the Wife sister sylvia, and they
have like a 1 year old son. We have sat with them twice so far this
week but they werent able to come to church. That is also one thing,
it is so much more difficult to get people to come to chruch here, its
crazy. I am really hoping this family works out though because I just
love teaching familys. We really do have a pretty good teaching pool
though and I am hoping for some good things to come from it. Well this
week I had a really interesting experience. It was on Saturdayy
morning, we had a plan to go and see one of our investigators who is
ALWAYS available but for some reason he just didn’t have time for us,
so we just headed to our back up who is two sisters named Alberta and
Dora. When we got there we passed Dora who said she was on her way to
collect some money so we just started with Alberta, about half way
through the lesson sister Dora came back holding this little boy who
was about ten and then just started beating the crap out of him asking
him where the money was. At first I was a little surprised but it just
continued on. I tried to ingnore it at first but I just thought to my
self that I am a representative of jesus christ and would he just sit
back and do nothing like I was. Personally I hate it when people beat
there kids here (its very common though) so I didn’t want to like
intrude but finally something just told me I needed to get up and go
over and intervine. Story was that this kid stole 10 Cedes (about 4 US
Dollars) from Dora and it wasn’t even hers and he couldn’t tell her
where it was for a while so we just tried sorting things out and
counseling with him. He was just bawling his eyes out and everyone
around him was just screaming and I just really felt bad for this kid
even though he was clearly in the wrong. I finally decided that maybe
I could help this kid out so I took him away from everyone and I
talked with him a bit. I told him that the way he was going wasn’t
going to end good in the future, that if he kept on stealing that it
would bring so much unhappiness. Then I decided that I would help him
out and give him 10 cedes as long as he promised me that he would
never steal again. For me, that was the very last of all my  money for
the entire sub so I didn’t really eat to muc Saturday night and Sunday, 
 but it was really worth it. I don’t know how serious the kid
took me to be and if he will even remember what happened that day, but
after we got done I really just felt a peace of heart knowing that I
did the right thing and what lots of people would say “do what jesus
would do”  Really built my testimony about just always showing
Generosity in any situation, no matter if it is the common thing to do
, but to just always do the right thing.  Anyways, we had 2 people
come to church this week, one was our sister Dora who always comes,
and then we were surprised by an old man who came whose name is
Emmanuel Clottey. He really enjoyed church and said he would come back
next week, so we are improving every single week. Well family, the
work here is good, I am excited to see what we can make of this place
here in Nsawam and in Ghana. I sure do love you all and I hope that
you all have a wonderful week. Love,
Elder Bowring

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

August 9, 2014 The Big One-Year Mark . . . Mission Assignment is Officially Changed ! ! ! ! * * * * * * Ghana Accra West Mission * * * * * *

August 18, 2014

Elder Burr, Sister & Brother Berrett, Elder Tolar & Bowring
Dear Family,
Well this week was good, it was nice to just get back to normal
missionary work again and not have to worry about anything else. I’m
settling in well here in Ghana and things are going good. I just got
back from the temple sight. We went there this morning to the stake
center and played some basketball. They have like an actual real quart
there with nets on the baskets and everything. It was a blast and I
got to see Elder Tolar again and Elder Burr so that was good to see
them this morning. Last week I didn’t really tell you much about like
my living conditions and stuff like that and some different things in
my mission. First off, we have Electricity 24/7. Its like I have
stepped into the Celestial kingdom. I don’t even think I need to go
into any more detail on any other things that basically sum up about
everything haha.  We also have microwaves in the apartment so that is
a big change to, I almost forgot how to use them haha , So that means
I expect some microwavable popcorn in my next few packages coming this
way haha, if ya feel like it. Also we have refrigerators which is
really nice also, I feel like I am living the high life over here
haha. Our apartment is actually not as nice as my last one but with
all these accessories I am getting along just fine haha. We proselyte
until 9 here now so that is a big change but it is really nice because
it gives us time to go and see more investigators. We also have bikes
and I am been loving that. They have a lot of speed bumps on the main
roads so i have been able to catch some good air on some speed bumps,
its fun. Then when we aren’t on the main road its like we are mountain
biking on all the dirt roads so that is really fun. This week we did a
good job at teaching, I am still not to where I would like to be but
we had 25 lessons so that was good. We are contacting a lot of new
people here in Nsawam so that is what we were working on a lot this
week and we actually found some pretty sweet investigators. On Tuesday
we had a zone meeting and that was good. I met a lot of guys in our
zone who were in the MTC when I was so that was really cool to see
them again. After our zone meeting we had a sweet miracle happen to
us. We were walking down this place called Media and we had just
gotten bounced a few times, we were on our way to go see somebody that
we had contacted last week when a guy asked if we were business men.
So we turned around and told him who we were and as soon as we did he
just lit up and said “ I know that church” Turns out that he has an
old friend who is a member of the church and has set a good example
for him so he was more than open to sit with us. We were just planning
on taking down his information on the road but he took us strait to
his house and introduced us to his family. It was really sweet and a
good experience. It is nice to know that god is still looking over me.
We found a lot of other good people here, now this week we are just
going to focus on getting them to church. I also went on exchange with
our DL this week, Elder Wickham. He lives in the apartment as well so
that good to just go on an exchange with him and just teach some
people. We have another Elder In the apartment who is one of the first
missionaries from the DR Congo. His name is Elder Mybia. He is
hilarious, he is still trying to learn English so its been fun having
him in our apartment.  We only had 1 person to church this week, her
name is Sister Dora. She has been coming for the past 4 weeks now and
no missionary has sat with her yet so we pulled her after sacrament
meeting and taught her. She doesn’t speak very much English though so
we had to get a member to come and translate everything into Twi. She
loved the message though and already loves the church so I am thinking
it wont take to long to get her baptized so that will be really good.
Other than that, nothing to special happened this week, just still
getting into the groove of things here. We have transfers here in 2
weeks so it will be interesting to see what happens, I heard president
like to change things up a lot so I don’t know if I will be getting
switched up or not but at this point I have had so much change this
past month its almost like I don’t care haha as long as I am where the
lord needs me and I am doing missionary work, that is all I care
about. I really do enjoy doing missionary work, its definitely hard
and not a walk in the park but looking back on my past experiences so
far, I really do love sharing the gospel. Anyways, I love you all very
much and I hope you all have a great week this week. Love
Elder Bowring

Photos from the evacuation because of Ebola Outbreak

Saying Goodbyes

 They were in lock down in their apartments for 4 or 5 days before they actually left Liberia.  They couldn't have contact with anyone, not by phone or anything.  They didn't even get to say goodbye to their investigators or members.  Sad, but necessary.  They tried to leave once and got all packed up and Ghana refused  to let them fly into the country from Liberia so they had to go back to their apartments and wait.

Leaving Liberia

Loading Up!!

Just Waiting... and waiting...and more waiting!

 Elder Burr, Tolar & Elder Bowring

Getting instsructions from President Kirkham

At the Belgium airport.  

Sister Kirkham & Sister Berrett
Thanks Mission Moms for taking such
good care of our Elders!!

Elder Tolar & Elder Bowring

Still Smiling!!!!

                              From Brother & Sister Berrett's Blog...

August 11, 2014

Dear Family ,
Well I don’t even know where to begin. These past two weeks have been
some of the craziest of my life. I think you all know by now that I am
in the Ghana Accra West mission. I guess I will tell you how we got
here. Last week on Wednesday is when everything started. We got a call
from president Kirkham telling us to get all the Elders phones and
that we were not allowed to call anybody for what ever reason and that
he would be giving us further instruction in the morning. We had no
idea what was going on but me and Elder Tolar had a pretty good idea
that it was something to do with Ebola. We got another call on
Thursday morning telling us that we were on lock down until further
notice and that we had to cancel all baptisms for the upcoming
Saturday because they were anticipating on it being a couple of days.
That meant that we had to cancel Evanganline and Archies baptism which
sucked so bad. They had just gotten there marriage certificate and
everything was looking to work out. So we all sat around all day
Thursday which sucked. Then Friday morning we got the call that we
were all being evacuated and being reassigned to a new mission. Me and
Elder Tolar had thought that maybe something like this was going to
happen but I never really imagined that it would happen. It was so
crazy and it all happened so fast. The plan was to have us flown out
on Saturday. So we all got gathered together as a mission so that we
could go. The church had charted a plane to take us from Liberia to
Ghana strait, but when we got to the airport we got word that Ghana
wasn’t going to let us in so we hit another road block. So we all had
to go back to the apartments until we found out what was going on.
Finally we go everything figured out and we were able to fly out on
Monday. Some People go reassigned to the states but I was still going
to Ghana Accra west. To get to Ghana we flew from Liberia, to Belgium,
to London, and then to Accra. It was quite the detour. I was tired to
say the least. So we Arrived on Tuesday night here in Accra and my new
mission president and his wife picked us up strait. Ghana is a big
change from Liberia , it is a lot more modernized and a lot bigger as
well. On Wednesday, we just got to chill for a bit and get orrinented
into the mission. The mission president even allowed us to go the
temple that day and it was so awesome. We did a session and it was so
awesome, after all the stress the past week to just go in there and
feel the peace from the temple. It was much needed. Then Thursday we
got assigned and deployed to our new areas and our new companions. I
am in an Area called Nsawam and my companion is Elder Damane from
South Africa. Not going to lie, these past few days have been a little
rough. My area is not really up to par, I don’t know the reasons but I
am sure it is because of past missionary’s so that is a bit
frustrating. So I have been really trying to work hard these past few
days to get some things going in the area and then I was told by my
companion last night that we are working to hard. I am not even sure
what that means haha. So I guess I am going to have to find a way to
work hard but also get along with my companion so he doesn’t feel
overwhelmed. These past few weeks have really made me have to come and
humble myself, Especially in my new area and also In my mission. The
mission is a lot different from Liberia in a lot of ways but I guess I
just feel like not as much is as excected here as it was in my last
mission so I kind of feel like it is a bit lazy in a way. I don’t know
if that is just me being judgmental or if that is just how it is here.
I just kinds of feel like I am not being as effective as I can be and
it has really made me to think and ponder on a lot of things. I came
up with the conclusion that I just need to maybe be a little more
humble and  try and figure things out before I start to just jump in
head first into everything. The people here in Ghana are very nice
though, the area where I am , they speak a language that they call
Twi. It is spoken in most of Ghana and it is crazy. I don’t understand
a thing, and everyone here knows it and English is there second
language so I hope that I can get learning Twi here soon. One of the
talks in sacrament meeting even was teaching in Twi, blew my mind
haha. Well, I hope I will have some good success stories for you guys
next week, we for sure will be working here hard in Ghana trying to
get used to the mission and the environment and the people but I know
that everything that has happened is all in god’s hands. I know that
he will always lead me to where I need to be and that he knows why
everything has happened the way that it did. I sure do love all you
guys very much. O ya, I hit my one year mark this week, things have
been so crazy it just kind of snuck up on me. One year is no small
thing. I would just like to thank my sponsors for getting me here ,
Keen sandals for being on my feet everday carrying me to the people I
need to see, Nike for supplying me with all my gear haha jk but I do
want to thank all you guys for the support that I have received this
past year. It has really helped me along this journey that I am on and
I couldn’t have done it with out you all I Love you guys, have a great
week. Love
Elder Bowring

Sunday, August 10, 2014

August 4, 2014 Evacuated from Liberia

Liberia, Monrovia Mission Evacuation Picture

July 28, 20114

Dear Family,
This week was busy as it always is and it flew by but we really had a
good week.  This week is probably the hardest I have worked my entire
mission. Definitely feeling it today haha but it’s a good feeling.
This week me and Elder Tolar just really worked as hard as we could to
see those people and get the baptism ready for this week. WE had over
40 lessons this week and we saw it really help us this week. We had 20
people come to church yesterday, we were freakin pumped, so to say the
least things are really looking good in our area. This week we were
able to have our baptism for Grace. Archie and Evangeline we not able
to be baptism this week, we were really praying hard and working with
them very hard to get the things done that we needed to but they went
to go pick up there baptism certificate on Thursday and I guess that
they had paid there money to late so they aren’t able to get there
certificate until this Wednesday. Everything is looking great for
there baptism this week though, they were interviewed and have the
wedding all planned out with the branch president and so we are really
excited for that this week. They are both more than ready to be
baptized all ready. Our baptism was really good this week though, it
was on Saturday. She was the only one baptized so it was just a really
small simple service but it was a really good one. You could just feel
the spirit there and it was just a great little service. Grace was
very happy and excited, she even hired a photographer to come and take
pictures before the baptism , it was pretty funny.  I am very happy
for her. Saturday was also Liberia’s independence day and everybody
was busy on that day just partying. It was so hard to get a lesson on
that day but we were able to scrap out a few. On that day, everybody
just dresses up there children all nice and does there hair and then
they just go walk around and show them selfs off, its kind of funny.
This week we also had an exchange with the A.P’s. When they come down,
we just split our area and one goes with me and the other with my
companion. It was really hard to do that but we ended up having a
really good exchange with the A.P’s.  I went with Elder Burr. He is
from Utah and actually played football at Timpview so we got along
just fine. We were able to go out and actually have 9 lessons that day
and it was really good. This week we were actually able to find
another family in our area so we are excited about that. There names
are the Duncan family. We contacted them when there 12 year old son
called out to us, so we went and contacted them. It was just the
mother who was home. When we first sat down with her, she told us that
she was in another church and she was head of the women department and
that her husband was a deacon at the church so I was just thinking
“crap, they are never going to even want to listen to us” but we just
went on as usual and shared with them the message of the restoration
and she was very humble and loved the message. We came back later in
the week on my exchange with the A.P. and when we got there, the
husband was also there. We went over the restoration again with them
and the husband also loved our message. Even he has had a history with
the church in the past. One of his co workers was a member so she gave
him a Book Of Mormon and another book from the church. It was so
awesome to see, so we are really having some high hopes for the
family. The mother came to church this Sunday with her son. The
husbands little brother just died so he had a family meeting and
wasn’t able to come. It was really awesome. Other than that, this week
has just been pretty normal. The Randall family is really doing well
and still progressing towards the marriage. We are hoping to get them
soaked in the water here pretty soon. Just want to tell you guys how
much I love all you guys and how much I appreciate all you do. It
really means a lot to me.  The work is moving along great here and I
am still just enjoying my time. Love you all and hope you have a good
week. Love
Elder Bowring