Monday, October 29, 2012

Manga - Week 27

This week has been one crazy week, full of change. Maybe a little too much change. It was so hard for me to leave Quelimane. I didnt think it would be too hard until the night before, it actually hit me. We were doing weekly planning for the last time in the area, and I just broke down. Flipping through the pages and names of people that I had found, taught, and helped progress over the past few months. It really was so hard for me to leave. I can not wait for the day when I can go back and visit the amazing city of Quelimane again. Quelimane will forever have a place in my heart. I genuinly love those people there.
But I am now starting a new chapter here in Manga. Manga is portuguese for Mango. You would not believe how many mango trees are here in Manga. Honestly, there are as many manga trees as there are people. And over the next few weeks all of them will be getting ripe. There are already plenty that are ripe right now, and they are SO GOOD! they honestly cost nothing because there are so many of them. So I pretty much just down Mangos all day. It super nice.
I was completely shocked when I arrived in my new area. The area covers a large area, but we have like 6 investigators. There is a lack of work here. So I hope that things will change. This next week, we will be doing plently of finding new families. That is what we need right now. There is no excuse why we should have a limited amount of investigators.
Elder Fontes is a cool guy, and has a strong desire to be a exceptional missionary. He is from Sao Paulo, Brazil, and speaks as much english as I speak Chinese. In other words, he doesn't know one word of english. Haha but he is a good Elder, although hasn't been taught very much until he arrived in the country.  So I hope to help him develop these habits with me. I thankful for the opportunity that I have to help him develop as a missionary, and I know that I will learn things from him as well.
Sounds like things back home are going good! I love hearing about whats going on at home. But I continue to stay focused on the work here. Let me know where those guys will be called this week! Our ward is having a lot of missionaries! So thats super cool.
I'm having a lot of opprotunity to speak portuguese at this point in my mission as well. In Quelimane, i lived with mostly americans, so it we always spoke english. But right now, I live with a brazilian, 2 cape verdians, and one from Portugal. So only portuguese is being spoken in the house. But its super nice to expand my vocabulary!
I'm still unsure about packages being sent here to Beira, but Im still finding out. Hopefully everything will work out and ill get a package! That would be nice to have for Christmas.
Well, I dont have much time today. sorry about that. It took a long time to get here into the city, and now we are going to go play BASKETBALL! dead serious. A bunch of Elders are getting together and we need to be there at a certain time. And because we got here a little late, we dont have much time to email. But I am excited! First time playing since I left the MTC.
So I need to go. But good news is, computers here are way nicer, so I can send pictures home! But only 5 at a time and I have plently to send home. So I will start that next week. I hope you all have a good week! I'm happy here, and working hard!

Love, Elder Williams

"Leaving the church during a trail of faith, is like leaving a storm cellar during a tornado." -Elder Neil L. Andersen. I love quotes!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Photo - Last trip to the beach in Quelimane

Quelimane - Week 26

Well, change is always happening here in the mission. It's so weird. Sometimes I feel like I've been in Quelimane forever, but today, it feels like I just barely got here. It's amazing how time flies.
We just recieved transfer slides a few minutes ago. And it is not anything like I expected! I figured I'd stay another transfer here in Quelimane with Elder Andrade, or I would go to new area. And it turns out, I'm going to a new area!
I've been transfered to Manga. Which is an area in Beira. Beira is the second biggest city in Mozambique, and President is putting a lot of missionaries there because one of our goals is to have a stake in Beira, and in Maputo. So I'm glad to be a part of that.
There was one thing imparticular about the transfer slides that completely caught me off guard. Not only am I going to a new area, but I'm training a new Elder. Not only am I training a new Elder, but I'm training a Cape Verdian. That means I won't be speaking English for awhile!
Over my first few months in the country, I've learned a lot. I learned a lot of things from my trainer, Elder Workman. I know that trainers have a big responsibility. A new missionary will do and learn things through example. I'm excited to help Elder Fontes (my new companion) develop traits and characteristics that will make him an extraordinary missionary.
I never thought I would be training this early in my mission. As a matter of fact, just 6 weeks ago, I was still technically being trained. But I know that President Kretly has a lot of faith in me, but also, I know that The Lord has faith in me. So I'm excited for the opprotunity to bring the gospel to the amazing people of Manga.
I'm excited for a new chapter in my mission, but I really am sad to leave Quelimane. The people I've met, experiences I've had, I will never forget. Yesterday, after the Principles of the Gospel class, Elder Osborn asked me to offer the prayer because it was most likely my last church meeting here in Quelimane. After he announced it and after the prayer, Elizabeth, one of our investigators came up to me and asked if it was true. I explained the situation and that we still didn't know for sure if I was leaving. In that moment, she broke down and started crying. I found Elizabeth about 4 months ago. Some of my most spiritual experiences have been when we teach that women. She has an unbelievable testimony, and is waiting on a husband to get married so that she can get baptized. She thanked me for finding her, and then walked away as she still had tears in her eyes. It was an extrememly tender moment for me as well. I know, that I personally was chosen to teach her over these past few months. She thinks that I've changed her life forever, but really, it's the Gospel of Jesus Christ that changed her life. And as I was a part of it, she changed my life. I will never forget the people that I've met here. It really does hurt to leave them.
Since I'm not going to be in Quelimane anymore, I guess you shouldn't worry about sending me a package. I'll figure out the package situation once I get to Manga and let you know. Somethings I might want in my package are ties, contact solutuion, and american candy? Haha. But I'll let you know next week about the mail situation there.
I'm glad to here about the experiences at home! Tiff's missionary experience, the family reunion, etc. Sounds like everyone is happy and doing great! 
Well, I super don't know what else to say! Other than the new that I'm being transfered to Manga and that I'll now be training. I'm anxious to get that and start this new chapter in the mission. I'll be leaving for Beira either tomorrow or Wednesday. That means, another long, hot, uncomfortable bus ride. Haha. But hey, it's all part of the experience. It should be an interesting week, and I'll let you all know how it goes! I love you all and I hope you have a great week!

Love, Elder Williams

Monday, October 15, 2012

Quelimane - Week 25

Hello Family!
First of all, I want to apologize to my amazing sisters for not wishing them a happy birthday last week. I remembered, but at the same time, it totally slipped my mind. So I'm sorry! But I hope you both had a good day! And it sounds like you did. And of course Brittany went bowling... haha
We had a good week this past week, including watching another one of our investigators getting baptized. Gildinho was baptized by a young man who was recently baptized named Rema. I've walked with Rema a few occasions when I was companionless for a few days before the start of this transfer. It was a great baptismal service. The Spirit was strong, and everytime there is a baptism I feel the Spirit testify that this truely is the Lord's church and we truely are making a covenant with our Heavenly Father.
Me and Elder Andrade are getting along better. I honestly try so hard to be the peacemaker, it's alright, we do usually end up figuring it out in the end.  I try so hard to get to bed on time by 10:30. And as a matter of matter of fact, I can honestly say that I NEVER am late getting to bed. It's a habit I've started since day one.  I'm trying so hard right now to be the best missionary I can be, and the last thing I am is a lazy missionary with a bad attitude.  But I guess I'll just keep doing what I know is the right thing. 
About the package, that would be great! I would love to recieve a package! The Osborn's told me last week the Quelimane is better than any other city when it comes to sending packages. And I guess it only takes 2-3 weeks here to Quelimane. But the problem I would hate for you to send a package here, and then have me get transfered. So I'll let you know next week about a possible package. And I'll think of some good things I want in there as well.
As for the work, it continues to go on! We have a continual pool of new investigators as a result of the daily contacts that we are making. So that's nice! We have many progressing investigators, but some of them have problems getting to church. We call and even go by peoples homes before church every Sunday, but sometimes it still doesn't work. But I know that we shouldn't give up and continue to help them get to Church. As missionaries, we need to do our part, before investigators can do their part. And that's so true.
I'm glad you got to see pictures of the youth activity that me and Elder Andrade put on. It actually was a big hit! Over 20 youth came, and I shared a Bible story, and then we had a fun game for them to play. We had certain questions from the Bible and Book of Mormon. And it actually got super competitive! Which I love!
So to sum up this week, it was amazing. Like every week. The weeks go by like days. There are plenty of hard times, but there is plently to be happy about. Quelimane really is starting to see Real Growth. Which is a big goal that President Kretly has for the mission. It's happening, and I know it will only snowball from here.
The Church is true. Christ's Church is on the Earth today. Joseph Smith saw our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ in the spring of 1820. The Book of Mormon is true, and I know that there is no way to salvation except through the Savior Jesus Christ. I'm so lucky to have this knowledge. And so grateful to have the chance to share it.
I love yo all so much. I hope you have an amazing week!
Love, Elder Williams
Quote of the week: "You can be excellent in every way. You can be first class. There is no need for you to be a scrub." -President Gordon B. Hinckley (actual quote)

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Monday, October 8, 2012

Quelimane - Week 24

Bom Dia! 

I hope you all had a good week back home with conference and everything. Conference was amazing. We actually got to watch one session live! Saturday morning session. It was night time here, so that was a little weird. But the Osborn's invited us over and we all were there for the big announcments. I can't believe it! 18 year old missionaries, and 19 year old girls? The work is going to progress so much more now. It'll be interesting as we see 18 year olds showing up in this mission over the coming months and year or so. But yes, I too feel bad for Natedog. Haha but oh well. I know that this is now the time when it needs to be put into action.

I loved the talks from that morning. Quentin L. Cook, Ann Dibb, and Russell M. Nelson. One quote that I wrote from Elder Cook is, "Men will be responsible after this life for every tear their wives shed." I had never really thought about that before. But a super good quote!

And I loved Sister Dibb's, "I'm a Mormon. I know it. I live it. I love it." That really is the attitude that we all need to have. And Elder Nelson's, "Ask the missionaries!" talk. It was funny because when he said that missionaries can even help you with family history, I got a little nervous and I hope no one asks me about that. Haha because I don't know much about it! But what a great session it was. I woke up saturday morning, unbelievably excited. It felt like I was going to Disneyland. We don't realize how cool General Conference really is. So I realized I have a new obsession: Conference! We're watching another session tonight at the Osborn's. I honestly can't wait.

We also got to see Sunday Morning's live as well. In portuguese. But we had to leave halfway through President Packer's talk because we had a lesson at 19:00. That's too bad because I heard Elder Holland's talk was unbelievable. So hopefully I'll get to watch it on tape within a few weeks or something.

Dad, I love the journal entries. I have a few pages in my journal the sound just like that! But I love the advice, and I've learned that to love someone, I need to serve them. So with Elder Andrade, I look for little acts of service. Whether it's his dishes, shining his shoes while he's in the shower, make his bed, etc.  I know that its up to me and I will work hard to make everything work okay. 

Our investigators are progressing nicely. Yes, we're still teaching Cornelio. His testimony is unbelievable. He's beginning to invite friends, and teach people where he lives the gospel. I wish you guys could meet some of these people. Unbelievable.

We have plently of progressing investigators, but one thing is that it's hard for us to get some to come to church recently. We call to remind, we go by their houses, but they still sometimes don't come. It's really hard. But that's why we need to find those people who are willing. I just really struggle dropping people. That's my biggest struggle right now. It's just so hard to know for certain when is the right time. That is why prayer is so important.

We should have an investigator getting baptized this week, but we'll see. He has had a rough past, and I've been praying for discernment on when is the right time, and if he truely is ready. After a few months, I genuine feel that he needs to be baptized at this time. I really have been extrememly cautious to know for certain. His name is Gildinho, and he's 20 years old. He studys the Book of Mormon like crazy, and has a strong desire to serve a mission as well. I'm really excited for him to make this important covenant with our Heavenly Father.

About the houses, my area is the city, so we teach most people in apartments or even houses. Some apartments are nice, and some definitely aren't. But we do teach occasionally in huts as well. Every once and a while there is a random hut and there are also areas in our area that our just huts. So we kind of get the best of both worlds. Oh and that triple combanation I sent home? I have one just like that with me. I had two in the MTC, so I figured I'd send it home and have one waiting for me.

One more thing, we found a... BASKETBALL COURT here in Quelimane! I'm so pumped. I haven't played for months, and I can't lose my athletic ability now. So maybe we'll have tme to play today, we'll see.

So that's kinda been my week this past week. I do love the work, and the people here in Quelimane. I knew the mission doesn't always have easy times, but I'm becoming a better missionary every single day because of it.

I love you all, and I hope you have a good week!
Love, Elder Williams
ps. Next week, I'll have my letter for my friends. Com Certeza.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Photo- Teaching in Quelimane (Church Porch)

Elder Andrade & Elder Williams

Elder Andrade & Elder Williams

Monday, October 1, 2012

Quelimane - Week 23

Dear Family, 

Well, I don't even know where to start. This week was very interesting.  I know more than ever that the Lord put me here in Quelimane for a reason.  And I think the reason is to learn patience. I'm committed to the work and always want to do the right thing in all we do.  I'm committed to hitting our goals and pray that we will continue to find great investigators. 
The MTC taught me humility, my first 2 transfers taught me charity and love, and know I'm learning patience. 
Our family Jazila and Joyce didn't get baptized this week... but hopefully within the next couple of months.  
I also got the world worst haircut this past week! Haha i was kind of funny. I was the first white guy hair that the guy did, so he struggled. Haha it looked so bad. People in the house were saying that it made me look like a mexican. And it's kind of true. Haha I guess I'll just wait for it to grow out.
We continue to find more families, but it hard cause most of the contacts we make actually live in another area. One area here in Quelimane is huge! So they get a lot of our contacts. But it's alright, as long as we are getting real growth here in Quleimane!
I'm still happy. I know this is the true church of God on the Earth today, and I'm so grateful to be here in Mozambique to share it with other people. Thanks for everyone's example to me!
Mom, I'll send that letter for all my friends. Thanks for reminding me! I hope your getting to know my friends' mom's a little better as well! Love you!
I hope you all have a great week!
Love, Elder Williams