"And now, my beloved brethren, I would that ye should come unto Christ, who is the Holy One of Israel, and partake of his salvation, and the power of his redemption. Yea, come unto him, and offer your whole souls as an offering unto him, and continue in fasting and praying, and endure to the end; and as the Lord liveth ye will be saved."

Monday, January 26, 2015

Hello Everyone, How Are You All?

Hello everyone, how are you all?

Tamatave is doing very well, remember the two potential baptisms that I mentioned last week? Well they both had their interviews and.... They both passed, if nothing happens or pops up (as sometimes occurs) they will both be baptized on February 7th, Elder Anderson and I are both very excited for that.

This past week nothing super special happened except that on Tuesday we got super rained out, appointments dropped and we could not contact because of the rain but luckily some members invited us in to their homes to take shelter while the rain slowed down.

On Friday I went on a split with Elder Stringfellow in Ankirihiry while Elder Anderson went with Elder Turner to do a baptisimal interview. It went well, Elder Stringfellow is a super good missionary and knows how to ask good questions. As Elder Stringfellow is part of my MTC group I was a bit nervous to go out with him but we went out and had a great time. I learned some good things on that split.

Yesterday was very special because we do not have much of a program on Sunday so we were not going to teach much and do a bunch of contacting. Our first lesson was with a guy named Juno but when we got to his house he was not there. But as we were leaving we hear someone calling "ANDERSON". Juno is the only one who does that and we ended up having a lesson with him. I really enjoy teaching Juno, he is great and he really loves having us over, he even offered to go around and help us maybe one day we will take him up on that offer.

We have had a good week, right now I have been studying in the war chapters in the book of Alma (Chapters 45-62) and it is all about how our "enemies" cannot gain an advantage over us if we follow Gods path, that is the only way that the Lamanites right now have gained any power over the Nephites. It is good to remember that as long as we all hold true to what we have been taught then our enemies will never gain a hold on us. Have a good week everyone and enjoy every minute of it,

-Elder Nelson

Juno- I love him a lot. Yesterday he asked us if he could go around with us. He is just awesome.

I have no idea what that bird is.

The kids were just there at the spot where my picture was taken and I just decided to take their picture. They just scattered when I pointed the camera at them but the lone kid in one didn't quite make it. The others mostly stayed.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Who wants to go out and work? Well you can't because your areas on fire

Hello everyone,

This week was actually super good and if you are wondering about the title don't worry I will get to it.

Morarano is doing well, we are getting a lot of times, many of our investigators are doing well. We, Elder Anderson and I are also doing well, safe and ready to have another good week. Some news is that we may be having two baptisms by the end of the month, Eugene and a woman name Floritte. We gave both of them practice interviews and seem ready for baptism, their interviews will be this week.

This week we had a couple from the Office, the Rossiters, come down for a conference for returned meetings and to do house inspections and Sister Rossiter said "I am very impressed, this is probably the cleanest that I have ever seen this house" so it goes to show that a house of four guys can keep a house clean, at least when an inspection is coming... But with the Rossiters came two things for me, 1. some birthday cookies that I was not able to recieve in Tana and 2. a Brand New Bike. The old one that I was using was workable but was on the small side so I was a little scrunched, and the seat I had was pretty much not a seat anymore but a hollow tube that I was sitting on with a small covering for padding. Normaly this is not a cause for a whole bike but the Mission decided to get now bikes and gave one to me, so it all works out.

Now about this weeks title, which happened yesterday. Elder Anderson were working normally and were headed to Veriry (a smaller area in our area), we had gone a different way which allowed us to drop by an apparent less active and have a quick visit, nothing special. We get going on the path to our investgator and we see this pillar of smoke off to the side which is not to weird, just thought someone was burning trash. Our investigator was not home, his family said that he was not home and his family said that he had gone to the fire so we naturally went to go look at the fire. It was HUGE, when we got there a house and a place where they store wood was on fire, maybe with some trees but that is beside the point.

The thing is most of the houses here are made of very dry wood with tin roofs so it is very easy for them to burn. Now Elder Anderson and I were not idle, Elder Anderson called in what was happening and we went to help our members and investigators move their stuff to safer spots.

The fire eventually got put out leaving about 40 homes burned to the ground and some injuries but no deaths that we are aware of. Then that evening it rained super hard putting out the rest and leaving to have another evening where we get home soaked (it has rained almost every night, but it is ok because any chance of continued fire was quickly gone).

I think that is about it for this week, we are still doing good and are working hard, thank you all for your prayers and have an awesome week.

-Elder Nelson

Monday, January 12, 2015

The Letter That Took 4 Tries

For some reason, Elder Nelson kept accidentally sending his letter before it was finished.  Each successive letter was just like the previous ones, only a little longer and with an additional apology at the top.  I include only the final copy for your enjoyment and sanity!

(sorry, acidentally sent the letter before it was done, like not even close to being done, lets try again, and I apologize for bad grammar in the first letter)

(again sorry for the second letter, weird day)

(Apparently I am struggling and can't send just one full letter, I'll try to keep it to three ok? No rage)

Hey everyone who reads this, how are things going? Elder Anderson and I had a really great week.

One thing that we can both agree on is that we are getting better at teaching together. We are getting better at recognizing the others body language and letting the other speak which has allowed us to actually have a really good feelings in our times/ lessons.

So I said that this week was good and it really was, I am very proud of one of our investigators named Juno. Yesterday we had a very good lesson on Faith and we read a section from Enos, the section where Enos recieves a remission of his sins through his faith on Jesus Christ. I enjoy sharing Enos because it is very clear on the way that Enos gained a remission of his sins, and plus I like Enos so it was good all around.

This past Thursday our Zone Leader Elder Bowler came on a split with us to observe how we are doing and to provide aide and guidance in lessons and at the end of the day. One thing that he told us was that we are good at explaining the what and the how of a topic (ex faith) but that we should remember to explain the why of the subject, the reason it is important. One point of why faith is important is that everything here in the Church goes by faith, testimony, miracles, the reason we pray and go to Church, they all center around faith.

This week President Adams and Sister Adams came down for interviews and they were good, it was great to talk with Sister Adams and chat with the other Elders as we waited for our interviews. But on Sunday we got a big surprise; we were having sacrament meeting when randomly President Adams and Sister Adams walk in, Pres Adams went to a meeting but Sis Adams stayed and literally said after a small greeting "I don't expect to have every word translated"- Sis Adams, trademark and copy right (insert year here). So we tried but I can barely understand enough for it to make sense in my own weird head but to translate, hmm not so much.

My last thing this week, we were in a lesson and we decided to read the introduction of the Book of Mormon for the lesson because this person was a recent convert and it is more interesting on everyones part to still discuss the needed things but to do it in a different way. But when we came to the section where Joseph Smith states that the Book of Mormon is the most true of any book the Spirit came and it was goode to sit and discuss about the BoM, the testimonies given and spirit felt was just amazing.

I hope that you all have had a good week, have another enjoyable one, love you all

-Elder Nelson

Monday, January 5, 2015

It's a brand new day, and the sun is high (props to anyone who knows what this is from)

Akory (greeting here in Tamatave, basically the same as manahoana)

Ok everyone it has come, the year 2015 so tratra ny taona (happy new years in english, tratra means caught so tratra ny taona means caught the year)

How is everyone doing in your various locations around the globe? Tamatave is doing pretty well, we are teaching many cool people, two of which were baptized this past week there names are Kevin and Matio. Matio's little brother was baptized with them but since he is eight he doesn't count as a baptism.

One investigator that we are teaching I really enjoy teaching is Eugene, he is this older man who just loves to learn, literally he writes down every point that we say and teach him. He loves to learn so much and I can tell that he really loves the gospel, he has a baptismal date for the 31st of January. He has learned all of the lessons so all that he needs now is keep meeting with us, continue coming to church, and not have any sudden problems pop up. But I really enjoy teaching him.

A constant problem that we have, which everyone has is that investigators do not come to church. Yes we do have a few that do come but there are others that we really feel would improve if they just came to church.

But enough of that we had a good week. I am remembering our area better and I know our investigators I just have a harder time remembering the little paths that lead to peoples houses but I should be past that by next week.

Here is an experience from this week; yesterday we had a visit with Kevin, who had just been baptized, and we began going over all of the lessons with him as he is a recent convert. We began discussing Joseph Smith but ended up on the topic of prophets and the reasons that we need them. As we were discussing this I thought to share 1 Nephi 3:7 which is Nephi saying that he will go and do the things that the Lord commands but I used it to illustrate a point that we cannot do all that the Lord commands if we do not have his word and we receive his word by the prophets. It was interesting because I had never thought to use that scripture that way before but it just seemed the right thing to share and allowed the lesson to flow very well, it fit the lesson perfectly and allowed the spirit to come. There is a big difference between teaching a lesson and going by the spirit. We allowed ourselves to be moved by the spirit and it brought feeling of it just being right, it was an amazing thing.

I think that is it for now, sorry no pictures this week but I will continue to strive to provide visual proof that I am 1. alive and 2. actually in Madagascar. Thank you all for your thoughts and comments, have a good week and do not die, that would be much appreciated.

-Elder Nelson