"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, November 30, 2015

The start of another Transfer

Hey how is it going everyone? I hope that everyone had a great thanksgiving and even though it doesn't exist here we still had a great time but more about that later, here is how our week went,

Monday we took it a bit slow again and got everything ready for when Elder Razafimandimby moved so not much happened. But that evening we stopped by a lot of people to give them pictures and say final goodbyes ten that evening we stopped by at our Branch Presidents house for a little family home evening for a missionary that was just about ot head out to Congo, we were all very excited for him.

Tuesday was a pretty normal day as Elder Razafimandimby was not leaving until Wednesday so we went and sent him out with a great day of work. Probably the most amazing parts of that day was visiting Claude and his family. They are just so amazing but they just cannot get to church for some reason, any ways  we taught them about the Book of Mormon and Elder Razafimandimby just bore such a powerful testimony about it, this is just what we always tell those we teach, "don't trust us because we are not perfect, even though we are possibly good teachers, or nice, or you enjoy having visitors. You need to ask for yourself because no one else can do it for you, not your pastor, nun, religious leader, or family because they won't know but ask God and we can promise you that He will answer you if you truly ask sincerely".

Then the other thing would be our last visit to Richard and Lolona and Elder Razafimandimby gave an amazing spritual thought on the relationship between what Gods goal is and what our purpose is. He brought the spirit in very well and I could tell that he was trying very hard not to cry, I know that he was not really ready to leave Antsirabe yet.

Wednesday, as it was Razafimandimby's last day, we borrowed some of the other elders bikes and did some last minute stops at peoples houses. That around eleven he left I I began a three day split with Elder Koncurat until our new companions came.

Thursday was Thanksgiving so because of that we went out to this amazingly nice vazaha (white tourist person) restraunt and it was just so good, I got a pizza and the crust was so light and fluffy. That day we were also able to visit Rivo and Ivonne, we were supposed to learn about the Book of Mormon with them as well but we unfortunetally did not have a book to give them (we were out and had not gotten any more yet) so we reviewed alot on prayer; the reason we do it, the way to pray ect. and they all gotten it very well and began to apply they had learned. These people are just so cool, I feel that they will progress very well. Then that evening we were supposed to meet with some other missionaries for dinner but they ended up not waiting for us but we were able to meet up with them for some ice cream which was a great end to the day.

Friday I was still working with Elder Koncurat and the day was ok, it was a bit hard to catch people but that evening our real companions came in. Elder Sweeten is this giant kid from Orem Utah and his is just such a stud. He enjoys working hard and loves being a missionary, what more can I ask for! Plus is seems that we will get along very well, I am looking forward to working with him more.

Saturday we had interviews with President Foote as he came down to Antsirabe for a District Conference. It was great talking with him and learn more about how he wants the mission to go. After that we went out to work and managed to teach Claude and Haingo again and we began learning about the Plan of Salvation and I do have to say that it was a very great lesson. Everything just flowed well and everyone understood. Then I wanted to talk about why they would not come to church and they couldn't really give a good answer, we will see how that goes with them.

Then that afternoon we were able to attend the adult session of our District Conference with two visiting seventies. The session was great and I believe that everyone got some great instruction out of it, specifically on the importance of councils in the church; whether they be family or ward councils.

Ok I think that is about it, we had an amazing week and look forward to another! Wishing you all a great time,
Elder Nelson

Monday, November 23, 2015

(no subject)

Hi everyone, wow it is another week, this last one just went so fast

Tuesday was way good, we got were able to meet with a newish family named Haja (the wife) and Mamy (the husband) and they are both very coom and I feel prepared people. Mamy apparently  hasn't been to any kind of church for about 5 years and he had a lot of questions for us. We were also able to visit Rivi and Ivonne again and they are just so good to teach. Most of the time it is just the wife that is interested to learn while her husband just sits there but both of them are very attentive and remember a large amounts of what we teach.

On Wednesday we were able to take one of our recent converts, Bruno, to come help us meet with a less active named Lanto and her neighbors who wanted to learn as well. We spoke and discussed the first lesson; The Restoration, with a great focus on the family. Also notice how I said spoke, something that took me a bit to grasp on my mission is that people learn best in a conversation instead of just sitting and listening to a giant white american rant for about 30 minutes. Bruno did a great job and has such a powerful testimony of the gospel.

We were also able to meet with a new family called Valerie and Vonjy. We have really only met with them twice yet I believe that they understand what we teach and enjoy meeting with us. We left them with a commitment to begin praying to know if what we teach could really help them and their family.

Probably the best thing that happened on Thursday was our lesson with Claude and his family. We had a great lesson about the Book of Mormon; we didn't really teach the story like we normally would but focused instead on why we need to read and ponder this great book of scripture. I truly believe that they felt the spirit and they all promised to read and pray.

So I am going to skip a few days, not that I don't like them but not much really happened on them so on Saturday even we finish our last lesson and head home to charge our phone and get trasfer news (we needed to charge our phone as the power was out for a bit so it did obviously). So we talked with President Foote and we are getting changed. I am staying here and I am getting a daughter/ I am moming which means that I will be working with an elder that just finished getting trained. His named is Elder Sweeten and Elder Kelsch from my group just finished training him, I think that we are just going to have a blast!

Finally Sunday we had a great day, we were able to attend a region conference for South Africa and ended up being able to teach all day, days like that are just amazing and make it worth being on a mission.

That is about it, sorry that is a bit short but I only have a little time left so that will have to do, have a great week everyone!
Elder Nelson

Monday, November 16, 2015

(Insert the title that you think goes best because I have no idea)

Hello everyone, this has been a pretty good/normal week but as always it was enjoyable and we got a lot of work done,

Tuesday we visited an amazing little less active family, well specifically the husband is less active but his wife is super cool and active as can be, their names by the way are Edward and Ganina. Really the only problem that blocks Edward from coming to church is that he is sick and can't walk far. Also that he is a tiny bit lazy you could say becaues people have offered to get him a posy(a little hand or bike pulled buggy) but he won't take it, so we will see how it goes with him.

Wednesday we started off by sharing a small vastimpanahy (spiritual thought) with Lolona, our returning member. Her husband Richard has been very busy with work this past week so it has been hard to get a meeting with them but at the very least Lolona gets a little spiritual boost to keep her going. Elder Razafimandimby shared the spiritual thought in Alma about the Zoramites and the way they worship on the Ramiomtum(?). He ended it by saying that while the Zoramites techniqually worshipped they did not live their religion until their day of worship came again. It was very powerful and a good reminder to always live what we believe. Then most of our program fell out so we tracted a lot and even though it was alot of tracting we still had a blast and as a result of that tracting we found a potential new family to teach named Jean Paul and Juliene.

Thursday we taught a semi newish investigator named Nirina and we had a great lesson on the Restoration. She told us that even though she can't provide that much physical food for her family she at least wants them well fed spiritually which is just so awesome in my opinion. Then that evening we got a return appointment with a family that we talked to this past week called Rivo and Ivonne. Ivonne works while Rivo stays at home, he hasn't been able to find work for about the last year or two. We had a great lesson on a subject that I love teaching about which is the importance of the family. Most people recognize that family is important but most don't see how it is connected to the gospel and really I feel that this teaching is what really gets people interested in our message.

I would definetally count Friday as a success. We have a less active named René that has just been inactive for the longest time and whenever we meet with him all that he wants to talk about is stuff like food and getting financial aide. Well this time we decided to talk to him about missionary work and René was just so involved. We then comitted him to helping us whenever we needed some member help which is a great step in my opinion.

Saturday we had an amazing lesson with Claude and his family and we reviewed a bit about Joseph Smith and the Restoration of the Priesthood. They just get it but it is hard to get them to come to church, but we left them with a commitment to continually pray about our message. Also we had a lesson with Rakotoarimandimby and Meline but unfortunetally they are having a hard time progressing. The thing is they have been praying to know the truth yet I don't believe that they are really doing it with real intent as Moroni instructs us to do. They are just so deeply rooted in being Catholic that they won't change, even if they get an answer, which is just so saddening sometimes but we will continue working with them.

And Sunday was my older sisters birthday so.... Happy Birthday Erica!!! I hope that you had a great birthday yesterday!  Also that morning we tried to go out and bring some people to church but a lot were not able but we were able to bring two with us. And this is just awesome, do you all remember Nirina that I mentioned earlier? She came to church for the first time and we got her introduce her right to some amazing sisters that took care of her, we were so extatic when she came. We went to work right after church ended and I would say the visit that I enjoyed the most would be the one with a man named Jevance. This is our second time meeting with him and he had already read the pamphlet that we gave him and had some questions for us, which is just so awesome when that happens.  We then reviewed a tiny bit and then put an extreme amount of emphasis on priesthood. I shared with him John 14:26 where Jesus states that his servants do not choose him but He chooses them and that just really made the teaching sink in.

I think that is it for this week everyone, I hope that you all have had an awesome time, and heres hoping for another great week!
Elder Nelson

Monday, November 9, 2015

Antsirabe, it really is the promised land

Hi everyone, man this week was just great, we got a lot of times and awesome people are learning and coming closer to Christ, I just love it.

Monday we walked around a bit, went shopping, took a nap (it was great), and went to the cyber to send emails...then the power went out (that is why there was no letter from last week).

Tuesday we got dogged alot but we were able to teach Niaro, the son of some recent converts, and we reviewed the first lesson with him. He really surprised me with how much he remembered and that he had been reading the boky kely (pamphlet) that we had given him. Our last lesson of the day was with a returning member named Lolona and her nonmember husband Richard. I have to say that they are some awesome people, Lolona had been inactive for a long time apparently until Elder Razafimandimby and his last companion Elder Obioma visited and reactivated her, now we teach her husband. They are both amazing people but Richard is not really that dilligent right now about coming to church but we are still going to work with him on that.

The lesson that we had was on the relationship of the Holy Ghost and Prayer. I I shared with them  1 Nephi 10:19 which says that the person that diligently seeks will find and that the mysteries of God will be revealed to him by the power of the Holy Ghost, it is a really good scripture and they said that it made perfect sense to them.

Wednesday, I would say that my favorite family to teach right now is Cluade and Haingo. They have been learning with us for a bit and are making really good progress. They learn well, have accepted a baptisimal date, but just need to begin coming to church. But the lesson that we had was centered on the Apostacy andit went very well.

On Thursday we contacted a decent amount but ended up meeting with a family named Rakotoarimandimby and Meline. They are firm Catholics yet I feel that if they would just ask and pray to know that they could change. But this last Thursday we only taught Rakotoarimandimby and we really focused on Joseph Smith and asked him "if God has called a new prophet that was like Peter and all the other prophets of old, what would that mean?" He replied "that would mean that we should follow what he says" which is exactly true. Spo we bore testimony that there reallyis a living prophet in our day and along with that we invited him to be baptised when he feels that what we are teaching him is true. After a bit more discussion he finally accepted, but only if he felt it was right which is all that we ask.

Sunday (going to skip a bit) we had a great time at church and then got right to work. We met with a new investigator that we had contacted earlier in the week and started off expoaining who we really were and such with a small lesson. Then Elder Razafimandimby, being the great missionary that he is straight up asked Jevance (that is his name) to be baptized if/when he felt that it was true and Jevance accepted. We then got some member help to teach this woman named Lily and her daughters as there father was not home. We reviewed Apostacy thoroughly and ended with our testimonies and again my companion just slayed it by extending a baptisilmal invitation and they accepted, Elder Razafimandimby was on fire that day.

One thing that I have seen from this is that really it is ok to asked people to be baptized in the first or second lessons, especially when then understand that the choice really depends on them, it helps people see what our goal is. But right now Antsirabe is just killing it, it is just so amazing to work here.

That is it for this week, I hope that everyone has a great week incoming, ampitiavana,
Elder Nelson

Beetle or vongory in malagasy, and there are also plenty of mosquitoes too!

Crushing corn as some service for some recent converts who then fed us some of the corn that we crushed the next day, it was way good.

It was dry corn that we crush/ semi crushed which can then be boiled and cooked