New couple missionaries-"The Zolls" 06/29/11

New couple missionaries-"The Zolls"                              06/29/11

Elder David & Elder Lehr

Elder David & Elder Lehr

Good bye to Pres & Sis Sabey

Good bye to Pres & Sis Sabey

Missing my Silverstone Ward

Missing my Silverstone Ward
Silverstone sticker on back of van

Ashante Region

Posted

MI FAMILIA, (oh...wrong country and mission, dang it)

My week was awesome and it came and went really fast. I guess thats what happens when we stay busy and on top of things. Tuesday was zone conference which was great. President is always really good at motivating us and making us feel more confident in what we are doing. He told a few stories and one was about him on his mission in England where they went contacting and he was 3 months out just called to train (sound familiar?). He said they ran into a minister of a church and he wanted to disturb some missionaries from the LDS church so he called them into his house to have a "lesson." As they taught the first discussion he showed them plenty of scriptures that disproved their lesson and asked the missionaries...well what about that?  And they said...well we don"t know about that but what we do know is Joseph Smith is a true prophet and if you asked God you could know too. The guy would say ok...and then they'd continue the lesson and he'd stop them with more scriptures. They answered the same way...we dont know about that but what we do know is....   And it took 2 hours to barely make it through the first lesson. They were walking out and he asked them, well are you coming back? President Sabey was shocked and answered...well do you want us to come back? And he said ya that would be good so they booked an appointment and the next time the same thing happened. After some time it came to a fast sunday where the recent convert (the same minister who bothered them with scriptures) bore his testimony saying how he got sick and tired of the missionaries not having answers to questions but they would always say.."Well we don't know, but what we DO know is that JS is a true prophet and you can know that too if you would ask him." And they guy said he finally did what they asked him to do and that was to ask God. So he did and was converted.  Well to make a long story short, President related it to us new missionaries (more then half of the two zones in Kumasi). He told us that even though we don't know very much, we know enough. It was a powerful zone conference and all of us felt way more confident about our efforts especially with intelligent pastors that talk to us (there are plenty of them here).

Well fo the rest of the week we worked hard and taught a lot of less actives and recent converts and some members that we could probably still classify as recent converts since they still don't really know how to be members. It was awesome to see them all at church and they even brought their referrals with them which was awesome! Peter is a member referral that should be baptized with Nicholas (the little boy from the part-member family) in a few weeks to complete the mission goal! YA!  It is an awesome feeling to come to the close of a mission goal, especially cuz they aren't easy! Elder Clements is doing great!

Tell Bishop its been 5 and a half months without hearing from him and he's asking me for letters to the ward?? haha, he can take it so let him have it for me. I even emailed him. Oh well, ill write one anyways lol.

Today was pretty cool...So ghana is split up into regions and the biggest region is the Ashante region, the TWI speakers. We are in the heart of the region in Kumasi and so today for our zone activity we went to the Ashante's main palace called the Menshya palace (pronounced men-sha). Its where the Ashante King lives and conducts his business haha. We got a tour through the museum that told us all about the history of the Ashante people and their traditions. They didn't allow pictures inside but as you know....I'm such an honest missionary and I snuck a few shots. Ill send them to you soon. It was a good change for once by going somewhere instead of just washing and cleaning and cafe on a p-day.  You guys are lucky it rained...its still dry season and we haven't had rain in a few months. Its very dusty and everyone seems to be getting a cold or something. I'm going strong again and its much better to go to work then sit and be miserable. I'm now at an internet cafe at the huge stadium, its much faster and better quality. There is a game going on outside and we didn't have to pay because we are missionaries lol. Its sweet. you can hear all of the people yelling and screaming. Yesterday was crazy!! It was the African cup quarter finals and Ghana was playing so everything in this country comes to a stop til they are done. If they win you hear screaming and pots and pans and whistles and if they lose then people don't want to talk and they wont eat or drink anything...they sure are passionate about their football. Its awesome since i love the sport too. Members always invite us over to watch the games...I don't think they know too much about the rules haha. Its a good thing that members care about us though cuz this ward used to be anti-missionaries since there were some bad things that happened in this ward including Elders and some members. So its going good now :D

I sure am loving missionary work and doing just fine. Everyone thinks that Elder Akoki and I both could be leaving Asokwa or even Kumasi... who knows?  I don't think so but you never know with President and the Lord.  All things will be made known in due time. hahaha remember that phrase? 

Well i love you all so much and hope you are writing me letters cuz i wrote all of you letters! I love you and miss you so much but its ok cuz its for both my progression, yours and the people we both are serving. I am grateful for you guys and your love and support. I know the Lord is blessing us both so much. Keep up the work even though its not easy, its worth every single bit of it.

Love Elder Lehr

PS: I heard some African Elders made a BAT STEW and ate it... Sis. Sabey rolled her eyes and put her hand in her face hahaha. It was funny and gross lol. I'm glad I'm not in that apartment.

"That man is crazy"

Posted

FAMILY!

This week was pretty crazy. Monday was transfer news and not one person in our zone came or went. Its mostly because of the mission goal coming to an end at the end of this transfer (February 28th). Elder Clements and I should be finished with it and baptizing that referral in the next few weeks. Im excited and so is the referral! He's a 9 year old boy in a part member family and the mom told us she wants him baptized now that they are becoming active in church again. Its amazing how the Lord works to bless these people and to help them progress. Its a huge help to that family to have this boy baptized. It will be exciting for the whole family and they will become active again. :D 

Saturday was pretty crazy... the one thing that sticks out is that a random guy who seemed crazy came walking up as we were teaching that 9 year old boy nicholas. He sat right down next to us and started rambling about crazy things. One thing i remember is that he touch mine and elder clements hands, said a prayer and then after told us that we now have the power to defeat mesquitoes and dont need to use our nets hahaha. The man knew a lot about joseph smith and the church. He quoted from DnC and Moroni and elder clements and i did little talking until we finally decided it was time to leave and he started walking with us. So we went quickly to the main road and hopped in a car as he was telling us, "I bless you great angels of the Lord." Once the door of the tro tro closed i said it pretty loud but i said, "That man is crazy." I had to say it... The whole tro tro hears rumors about our church as it is so i had to clarify to all of them that we had no affiliation with him hahaha. Everyone in the car was busting out laughing when i said it. It was an experience... Elder Clements and I seem to be having bad luck with crazy people just finding us hahaha.

Yesterday we had a powerful lesson with a guy named peter. He is very humble and has a neighbor who referred him to us. The members name is richard and he is powerful! After we were done teaching he invited peter to keeping studying and praying diligently, to come to church early and regularly, and to be baptized!! :D  Member present lessons are the best way to go! Elder Clements and i had a good laugh as we walked back home after that. We were shocked since the member didnt go on a mission, has been a member for barely 5 years and doesnt own a copy of preach my gospel. Its like he know what preach my gospel was all about without even opening a copy up. We sure loved it. Later last night we had 2 more referrals to go see. Remember sister Yaa who just baptized in November? Well she took us to two more referalls. One lady was named matilda and said she loved how our church went when she came a few weeks ago and she asked what she needed to do to be baptized, so we are working on that lol. We then went to sister Yaa's best friends house, Serwa. Serwa took all the lessons with Yaa but didnt get baptized because her husband is "stubborn." We were able to get inside their home and just visit and laugh with them. He asked a lot of questions about the church and we answered them, pretty simple ones. Then he asked where abouts the church was and yada yada yada. Then he said that he and his wife will come to church. Whether he is serious or not, it made Serwa and sis. Yaa very happy!! And they thanked us so much. All they could talk about was to be married in the temple....wow! So soon and they talk about the blessings of the temple! :D  It was a great night! We came home and ate good!! We cooked a big thing of rice mixed with a tomato stew we made earlier in the week (you cant just go and buy ragu!!) and fried up some plantains (which look like bananas and when they are fried, they taste really sweet!). We enjoyed our sunday!!

This next week will fly by so much faster then last week! We have zone conference tomorrow (the 2 Kumasi zones, Bantama and Dichemso, Im in Dichemso). I love zone conferences, they are always so uplifting! And we get fed!! :D  Thats always a missionaries favorite part. One of the Elders jokingly told president that if we didnt get fed, we wouldnt come to zone conference hahaha. Presidents awesome, of course he had some kind of response to defeat the Elder, It is his profession, a lawyer. Haha. Then on Thursday we'll have district meeting then on friday we'll have splits with the zone leaders.

Well I love you guys so much and hope you are enjoying the cold weather! Last night we all got woken up to phone calls telling us that their was a ghana radio station telling everyone about an earthquake that was predicted. There has rarely been an earthquake in west africa so everyone was freaking out, calling the bishop and us to ask what they should do hahaha. We told some of them, "well lets hope you dont die cuz you didnt come to church today." Elder Akoki has no mercy for people who lie and tell us they will come to church hahaha. Its ok, we are good friends with those people so it wasnt too offensive, just funny.

I want you guys to know how happy i am to be serving the Lord full-time. I am learning so much about myself, the gospel and a very different people here in ghana. It is getting easier to have patience and show love especially to those in my apartment. Whether we are compadable or not, its getting easier to just relax and let things go. I wish i could of been like this in my own family, it would of made things so much easier and happier. A few days will be my 5 month and before this transfer ends, itll be 6 months...crazy how fast things go when i am doing the Lords work.

Love, Elder Lehr

PS: Happy Birthday Bug! I didnt forget...i wrote a letter haha. I hope you enjoyed your 14th birthday. (add sarcasm here).


THIS IS AN EMAIL FROM ELDER AKOKI (he is in Elder Lehr's apartment...he's in the picture at the very top of the blog):

Hello,
This is Elder Akoki. I was planning to send you this message to thank you but, I failed. I am very sorry, you have to understand its not my fault, it is just in us. (El Lehr might explain)
I am very grateful for your gift, I was so happy to receive, once again THANKS!
A LOT. I really enjoyed the candys. I was talking with one missionnary and He asked me how is it to be only with White Missionnaries and I told him that I am now a sweet missionnary, It was a way to tell Him that I eat so much sweet food. Evrything is SWEET in the Appart. Lets talk about you son. When He came he seemed very troublesome to me, I didnt know him very well. But up to now He has changed a lot, right now He is learning the doctrine of THE STONY GROUND (He will explain to you) HE is a cool guy, you should not worry, Iam taking care of him. I make sure evryday that He wakes up at 6.am, He takes his bath, He takes his Breakfast and his doxy and go out and feed the SHEEPS; in one word He is in good hands. And also He told me that He is really getting to understand the Book of Mormon, it is POWERFUL. He is POWERFUL. Thanks a lot and May God bless you and your Family. Bye

 

Just the flu...........not Malaria

Posted

Hey family!

Not much happened this week since i was in bed all week with the flu. Malaria meds did nothing (which i figured would happen since i didnt think it was malaria). But i am ok and ready for this next week haha. My head is fine and my ear is peeling scabs off haha. Its all good... still not sure why i passed out, its not like blood bothers me. It must of been a combination of things. This week went really fast since i slept most of the time being sick and all. It was boring and even more boring for E. Clements i bet. E. Akoki was also sick all week so E Harris and Clements went out to teach a little bit haha. E akoki thought it was funny to see two greenies go out and teach and not get lost lol. Im sorry it wasnt a very eventful week. :(

Today we find out transfer news which my bet is that nobody leaves since E Clements just got here and  the goal is about to end next transfer... still not sure about E. Akoki and Harris, either one could leave. E. Akoki has been here 7 1/2 months, its his first area just like the rest of us lol. So who knows, we'll know tonight and the changes will be made on wednesday. It happens too quick, it feels like last transfer was yesterday which is good. only 15 more transfers to go haha. It seems like but the mission goes way too fast, work work work and it goes faster! Its crazy how time feels while being here haha. Its like time has stopped at home and will resume right where i left it when i get back, its a wierd feeling. I wrote a whole bunch of letters this week since i had sometime, but who knows when someone will be going to cape coast, maybe for transfers but if not you wont get these letters for a month haha. This week Elder Clements and i have decided to make dinner for the kiffers since they do so much for us, i think theyll love it since we've gotten better at cooking. My new favorite thing is plantain... they look like bananas but they are freaking good. We cook them in oil and salt and its amazing.... im always looking for places that have it now.

We have been working hard on the goal since we only have one more transfer to finish it. We have 4-5 less-actives we are working with and teaching 3-4 referrals. We found a part- member family that we can finish the goal with, they already told us we can baptize their son (since their dad is always in accra and never knows when he'll be back and im sure he doesnt have the priesthood anyways). Its wierd here and people give their sons or daughters to the missionaries instead of their dads to baptize and just little stuff like that in the church. It sure is different here. I am loving my area and the people here. The members are really trusting us and helping us so much. I guess there used to be problems in our ward with missionaries and so it is taking a longer time for the members to trust us. Missionaries who have been here said they have never been to the bishoprics houses and visited their families but now we are going there atleast once a week cuz they invite us over to carry water up the stairs and pound fufu and have fun FHE's with them. They love us and are starting to focus their weekly teaching to the ward on missionary work and helping us. The ward is really progressing and they are finally starting to initiate home and visit teaching assignments, which they should of had long ago haha.  President told us that President Monson told the mission presidents to keep missionaries in their areas longer so that they can get used to the area and not have to start over every couple months. So now he moves people on average, about every 6 months unless its for a leadership position or something comes up.

Well i am still getting Christmas letters from family and the ward!! Thank you everyone, i love mail!!! I will do my best to write you back! :D

Elder Clements is learning so quickly and loving the mission field, especially all the choices of food (add sarcasm here). But no he really is progressing and getting better at not being shy. He likes to talk about taylor swift and some girls back at home so that is good :D ! Atleast he likes talking about something! :D I like our apartment and hope nothing changes! So i read something in the brand new gospel principle manuals for this year. In the first chapter about Heavenly Father it teaches us that even God himself has faith. How can a being who knows all have faith in something? And what does He have faith in? There must be a deeper definition of faith, im learning about it and maybe ill write a letter or something about what i think haha. There is also a part in that book about how satan can immitate the gifts of the spirit, read about moses and the serpents in exodus. Satan's power is more real then i ever thought it could be!

Well i love you guys so much and am going to continue to sprint regardless of what my dad tells me (he thinks im not sprinting, he thinks he knows me so well hahaha, love ya dad).

Keep up the good work, good luck with finals and the next semester of school and seminary christine and karli!! And mom, stop freaking out, im better and doing well :D

Love your son and brother,

Cody.... Elder Lehr

Knowledge Knot

Posted

Family!!!

How are you? Happy new year!! I hope you had a good holiday season! Mine was...interesting. Apparently there isnt a law against making so much loud noise at night haha. All of the churchs here had loud music or people "speaking in tongues" on microphones all night!! We couldnt sleep til way late. It was crazy outside, so we stayed in haha.  Besides that everything has been just normal! You know that random less-active and his referral he brought to church last week? Well we taught him twice and they both came to church this week! He is way too smart for us! He was quoting scriptures from the bible and Coran and he would quote from the coran in ARAB, or whatever language it was written. It was crazy and intimidating haha. He is definitely progressing and we will meet him a few times this week too! We are so excited for his progress and pray and thank Heavenly Father for everything He has done for us and that He will continue to bless us and this potential less-active and referall for the goal! Besides them, we had 3 other less-actives at church that each brought a referall (some are more serious then others). We were so excited this sunday especially since elders akoki and harris baptised their referall! It was awesome

So this week we had really low numbers because nobody was around, they had all traveled or were busy for the holidays (Christmas Season lasts a lot longer over here). Ghanains sure do love to travel all over the world. Seriously, they are in every country! I love the people... i cant say that enough. They are so chill and love to talk and relax. They really fear and love God so much and when they hear about the gospel they really are converted! (most of them).

 I cant believe that in a few weeks it will be 5 months. It has flown by for the most part. I love it even though its the hardest thing i have ever done. The Lord really is preparing me and putting me through the refiners fire. I am becoming the husband, father and future leader of the church that He wants me to be. Elder Jefferey R. Holland asked a group of missionaries what the real reason we come on a mission. They all gave good answers about doing the Lord's work and all of that. But he said, "No thats not it. The Lord can do all of that. But what He cant do is force us to prepare to become the leaders of the church, including husband and father." Wow... I never thought of it like that. Numbers really dont matter as long as we are working hard and following the rules that are there to protect us. I am so grateful to be here on a mission and for the opportunity i have (unlike any other) to become who my Father in Heaven wants me to. I love you guys so much, keep up the good work!

Oh and i  almost forgot. Today... was crazy lol. We had a zone activity at the stake center (Dichemso). So we went with the Kiffers and it was the Kiffers activity. So we started to do the activities they had planned which was kinda like an olympics type thing. We did 3-legged races and egg races (carrying the egg with a spoon, in the mouth and hand) and stuff like javolin with a pbc pipe and discus (not sure how to spell it). Well.... first what happened was when it got to javelin... Elder Kiffer and Elder Mason (zone leader) were out in the field where we were throwing towards and Elder Ikor threw it without really paying attention to them. Well the pipe flew through the air so fast and just so happened to nail Elder Kiffer (old man Kiffer) square in the forehead. His head was gushing blood! IT WAS CRAZY!! So we all rushed for the first aid kit and to help him and everythnig was ok. But when they were putting the bandage on, for whatever reason i wasnt feeling too well (i wasnt feeling good yesterday and this morning either). So i took a chair on the sidelines and sat there with my head inbetween my legs. Next thing i know Elder Wright was holding me up and everyone was around me and i could see them but it was blurry. I HAD PASSED OUT! I landed square on the concrete head first and had cuts on my head, ear, hands and knees. IT WAS NUTS! Ive never felt like that before. The Kiffers called the Sabeys and they kinda freaked out and now have me on anti-malaria meds (its most likely not malaria but they arent going to take chances). But after i came to a sense of mind they sat me back in the chair and fanned me and gave me water (i hate attention, especially medical attention). I am just fine now except the cut on my ear and the knowledge knot on my forehead hahaha. It was kinda funny even mom is probably freakin out reading this bahahaha. Im ok mom, trust me!

 Well thats my funny story for the month! lol. I love you guys and hope you had a great week! Im starting to write more letters so give me ideas of what to say to you! Questions?!?! And all of you people who read this every week and think, "oh well i know whats going on with cody, i dont need to write him." YOURE WRONG! YOU NEED TO WRITE ME haha. I love you guys so much! Chruch is true!

Love, Elder Lehr

PS: No really mom, im just fine!