Monday, October 12, 2015

"Cool beans" - Hot Rod

Dear Family and Friends,

I am going to be transferred to Kasoa 2b area with Elder Varo (of the island of Fiji). Islanders have an awesome reputation here and they know how to kill and cook goats and pigs so that will be fun. I am sad to leave Mamponse, I have made many many good friends there and I will miss them very much.
So this is pure speculation, but in his email Elder Peters says he's going to Kasoa 2B...I don't know if this is a typo, or if he's going to the 2nd Ward.  The 2nd ward is the highlighted area on the map.  If he ends up somewhere different I'll update it.

This week it rained pretty hard on one day, our area was flooded a ton. I didn't get any pictures but I know that it wont be the last time so don’t worry I will get some good pics. But we are lucky that we have these gutters because we were able to walk on the curbs of these gutters to avoid having to get straight into the water. Our shoes did get really muddy but at least they didn't get really wet. You know when it will rain here because it will get super hot and sunny and you can see clouds billowing in the distance. I remember that night I woke up to what sounded like drums in the distance, they grew louder and louder until the rain was beating down on our roof. I really thought at one point, watching the literal waterfall outside my window, our roof will cave in and then we really will be in trouble. Our roof didn't cave in but that’s how hard it will rain here. And its not even rainy season yet...

The other night my companion said good night elder peters and turned out the light. Then about 2 seconds later he shouted and I could hear him waving his sheets and pillow around. The light flashed on and there was some weird looking Africa bug on the floor. He said that thing bit my arm dude! I said cool. You ok? We then took his mattress of the bed frame and started beating it with the cutlasses that my companion has. After a few minutes of chaos we threw the mattress back onto its frame and went to bed. Slept great.

I found a lady next to our house that sells really nice beans and fried plantain so I eat that a lot. Their "cool beans"

Time is flying by; elder Mantz and Perry are going to be co-equals in Oda. I’m super pumped for them, but also really jealous because wont be able to hang with them and teach the gospel. I think that they will do really well together.

This week was a week of goodbyes. We learned that elder Ferrin will be training a new missionary on Tuesday night and so the rest of the week was spent going to our investigators, recent converts, and members telling them that I will be leaving. I got fed a lot of meals and lots of people just wanted to meet and preach to me, at first I was kinda confused because and wanted to say, "ya of course I know the things you are saying are true.. Why else would I be here on a mission?" but then I realized that for a lot of them, there humble yet strong testimony was all that they could give. They had no money; they couldn't feed me or give me gifts. The only thing they could offer is the most dear thing they have, their knowledge that the gospel is true.

Francis didn't come to church again. I'm pretty sure that he is done drinking though which is really really awesome. Even though George in a taxi to pick him up. And we went to pick up Jonathan and he wasn’t home so Sunday was kinda a bummer day.

So about George. George Armah is 18 years old and is now one of my best friends. He would voluntarily come and study with us in the morning and then proselyte with us all day. Last night I went to his house because his family wanted to feed me fufu before I left them. Mission is just a lot of hellos and goodbyes. They were very sad. I shared with them a scripture. Alma 37: 6-7 "Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in my but I say unto you that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass. 7. and the lord doth work to accomplish his eternal purposes, yea by very small means doth the lord confound the wise." then jump right to Mosiah 8:18 "and thus we see that man, through faith, might accomplish mighty miracles and becometh a great benefit to his fellow beings." I bore testimony and told George that if it wasn't for him the missionary work here would not be nearly as successful as it is, perhaps no work would get done at all." I told him that there’s no way that we could go and teach people in gha, Twi, ewe, and English without him. Because he would literally translate our lessons word for word in Twi and gha almost all the time. for a birthday present I bought him a cool backpack that he can carry his scriptures around in and told him to prepare to serve a mission. He was SO happy; I have never seen such genuine joy before in someone. Later as a thank you he gave me his leather hymnbook. Now George’s family most likely broke the piggy bank to feed us that night. Those leather hymnbooks are really expensive here and the ward gave it to him as a seminary graduation present. It even has his name engraved on the bottom right hand corner. I told him that I could not accept this gift that it belonged to him, he earned it, "man no, it even has YOUR name on it, I can't take it" he said, "yes take it now; the name will help you remember me." He is an excellent friend and I will miss his companionship and his translation. Don’t worry I have his contact so I will keep in touch with him.
Joshua Peters! Goin to state baby! Represent the Peters family name well; finally Peters will be on the state results, man I have waited for this day. Kill it bro

Alexa, thank you for the pictures I am so excited for your performance, I know that you will do great1
James, way to go scoring a goal with your left foot! That’s incredible. Left footers are hard. Keep having fun and living large my little bro!

I have slacked off with my push-ups lately. Oh ya and we fit 29 people into a trotro the other day, that was fun. I thought putting 20 in the excursion was a stretch but it was nothing compared to this, and the 'scurge' is a fine machine, trotros are often held together with packing tape and usb cables. Really we saw a taxi driver fix his axle with a usb cable and then drive away. Sometimes I wonder what keeps things here from falling into mass chaos, but I’m pretty sure its usb cables and packing tape. It rocks. Don't try this at home...
Kasoa has a really big market I have learned; also they have a lot of missionary work to do there so I’m really excited. Thank you for all the letters and messages.

More adventures to come,

Love, -Elder Peters

Sorry this one is a little short.

Some other interesting things we learned from him today…

  1. He shared with us a lesson Elder Liera taught him a pretty cool lesson about leadership:   “I remember Elder Liera, people would call him and tell him that he would be AP and ask him who he thought the new AP would be and all this stuff and he would simply tell them they should focus more on their missions. That it doesn't really matter who gets what leadership label. You will go home and people will ask you, "How was your mission?" and you won't say "Ya I was the AP (snuf) I’m pretty cool I guess.." NO you would say, "Man it ROCKED! I saw peoples lives change, including my own." Sometimes he would even get kinda mad, he would tell people we were working and hang up when he was really fed up.”
  2. He told us there is going to be a big Tri-stake Conference on the 25th of October. That should be interesting.
  3. After his letter last week, he wanted to clarify that it’s not just the white elders who can sometimes exclude the others, but that even among the black elders they will argue about which country is the best.  He shared his apartment with an elder from Uganda and one from the Congo and he says that they are always fighting about which country is best.  The Elder from Congo insisted that when Christ told the Nephites that he had “Other Sheep” to visit that he was referring to Congo because ‘it is the best place in the world’.  It was good natured but his point was that all races can be exclusionary if they are not careful.
  4. He is a bit jealous that Elder Perry and Elder Mantz get to be companions. Imagine…Mitch and Conner together in the jungle, running together, preaching together, learning the gospel together…who wouldn’t be jealous of that.  We are all excited to hear what comes of their companionship!  Good luck Elders!!!
  5. In his new area Elder Peters will be sharing his apartment with an Elder Paddon who was in his MTC group.  Elder Paddon is from California and is pretty amazing.  So he's excited about that.
  6. There is an Elder Jake Jones from Kaysville who is coming home soon from the Accra West Mission???  If anyone knows who this is we'd love to attend his homecoming and hear about his experiences.
  7. He shot a 9 minute video of him teaching...but was not able to load it.  We are praying that we can get it next week!!! (along with a bunch of other photos)

We decided to send him some motivational posters to hang on his that will be meaningful to him.  Here are a couple:

I love the steam rising off the guys in this photo...and the mud ALL OVER them.

Photo credit: Coach Brad Anderson

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