Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Hair's the last!

Dear Fam,

"Today's tests are tomorrow's testimonies" - Author Unknown

These past two years I feel I have been tested to the limit.  It has not been easy, but with each obstacle my testimony has become stronger.  I'm grateful for all the times you have written and said that you as a family have been blessed while I've been serving as a missionary in Ghana.  I hope the Savior has been happy with my service.  I feel I have grown in ways I didn't think I could, but in ways He knew I could. I have truly wanted to become more like Jesus Christ. That was my goal and I will continue to strive for it.  How grateful I am for this wonderful opportunity.   I hope I have left a good impression on the people of Ghana concerning the Church of Jesus Christ.


and . . .

another chapter begins!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Short But Sweet

Dear Fam,

Lots of invites to see members and non members before I go. 

Recent converts have learned that we don't only care to just baptize them, but to also continue to teach and prepare them for even bigger commitments that they will need to make for months and years to come. It has been sweet to see how the spirit has made it easy for us to teach new member lessons once they have been baptized and confirmed.

Next Tuesday will be my last Zone conference. Sunday I will go to the Kumasi Mission home at 5 for dinner and a final interview with the President Holmes.


Early Monday morning we will leave for Cape Coast where we will meet up with the other missionaries we entered the mission with 2 years ago.  We will have one last "football" match together in Ghana. It will be great for the 7 of us to all be together again! Tuesday morning we'll all attend the Temple, then take off for London late that evening.

Next Monday will be my last email.  I will try to go out with a bang.

I love you all.

Elder Hair

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

ANOTHER Great Week!

Dear Family,

The weeks get more and more exciting near the end of my mission.  We worked hard this week to be able to prepare D and her two children.  The whole branch was so happy to see them enter the waters of baptism. They told everyone it was a very sweet experience for them.  What started with a simple referral from a recent convert, led to the beginning of a new life for this small fatherless family. D, age 30, and her three children, 12, 9, and 4 months, now have a much larger family in the Boukrom Branch.

We combined our baptism with another ward and D discovered a dear friend in that ward that she did not know was a member of the Church. The Lord has done many things like that to help our investigators, recent converts, and less-actives support each other as they grow in the Church. It has been another great week!

U, D, and Y were confirmed on Sunday.  D was ordained to the office of a teacher, and Y a priest. Everything is moving forward when the members work well with each other.

Saturday, the high councilor for our branch invited us to his daughter's baby blessing. As we were waiting outside, a big truck came and unloaded bags full of stuff that other family members bought to give to the family and the new child. Toys and clothes, a sink and tables, and anything you could think of.  The looks on the faces of the families next door made me feel uncomfortable because, like those families, I was marveling at just how much "stuff" they received!  For me personally, I have come to better understand these past two years, what is a necessity and what isn't.  Just one of many lessons I have learned.

I love you all very much!

Kolipoki....( Akwesi Enwi)

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Plan of Salvation

Dear Family,

What a great email from you guys this week. The last time I cried while reading an email was during the first week on my mission. I am proud of my brothers who have all set incredible examples for me. Now the pressure is on me! What a week! I love you all very much.

This week we have continued to work with Y, U, and D as we prepare them to be baptized and confirmed on the 22nd. We have also pushed our baptism forward a week because D and her three children can't wait another minute to be baptized. They have come to church 4 weeks in a row now, and have learned more than enough to enter the waters of baptism with clean hands and a pure heart.

A man that has been dear to me these past 6 weeks along with his mother both passed away, he on Friday and her on Sunday.  Patience and Charley have both been sealed in the temple, so her understanding of it all is much different from the rest of her family members. We have tried to take every opportunity to share with the family the Plan of Salvation and its importance in our lives.

The day before Charley passed away we went to the hospital with Patience to visit him. After being discharged for a month, he was re-admitted for a week or so before he passed. On Thursday however, his countenance was a little different then I had seen it the past six weeks.

Elder Kakowa and I would go by the house when he was there and sit with him, we would talk to him even though his memory loss made it impossible for him to understand us. Elder Kakowa said after we left one morning; "he recognized you today." I looked at him and replied... "the Spirit was really with him today wasn't it." 

On this particular Thursday however, Elder Kakowa blessed him with comfort to live his life according to God's will. He did just that, and now he is standing beside many great men as he preaches the gospel and testifies of the power of the priesthood to those spirits in Heaven. Although we are all very sad for his passing, there is an unusual joy in the Boukrom Branch as they too have caught the spirit of missionary work.

"The spirit can not be taught, its caught!"

Enjoy this week, I know I will too.

Love Elder Hair

Monday, July 9, 2012

Buokrom -- A Hoppin Place

Dear Fam,

Elder Kakowa and I would love to take credit for another very successful week with four wonderful baptisms, but clearly, it's the Lord and his Spirit who have done it all.

We have been teaching a woman and her three children.  Another woman has already committed to be baptized which is just great.  We're also teaching another man who we feel very positive about. We are planning their baptism on the 29th of this month. The Lord continues to put people in our path which has been a sweet experience words cannot describe. 

Elder Kakowa and I enjoy opportunities to serve the people in our area making Buokrom the hoppin place for missionary work.  We helped an older sister in the branch clean out the gutter in front of the church. It is about 30 yards long and 2 feet deep, and the whole thing was full of sand and...well, lots of other stuff. People passing by seemed amazed that we were doing it to begin with, and that an Obroni was in town doing manual labor. haha  One even asked, "Obroni, why are you doing this work?  Are they paying you for this?"  With a smile on Sis B's face, she introduced E. Kakowa and I to everyone that stopped and also shared her feelings about the Church.


With just 4 more emails left it seems like just yesterday that I was in Elmina with Elder Leko talking about my first Fufu dinner.

I love you all very much.

Elder Hair

Monday, July 2, 2012

People to Teach, Hearts to Touch

Dear Family,
This past week we topped the charts with 15 investigators at Church. 10 adults from different families, and five children. Our next baptism is on the 8th for a sister named U (age 27) who was referred to us by the branch clerk, who was referred to us by the branch president and a boy named D (age 14), who was referred to us by one of our recent converts. All of those good members have shown faith in the Lord's message by coming to Church, participating in their classes, reading the Book of Mormon, and sharing the Gospel with their friends.

P and F were both confirmed on Sunday and it was one of the sweetest things. After F was confirmed, she was crying, and I could tell that she had truly felt the spirit touch her heart that day. I also had the privilege to stand in the circle for my first blessing of a new born baby.
This week, we worked hard to help those Elder Kakowa and I are teaching to feel the true spirit of our message by making sure that they knew how much we love them, and how much the members love them. On our way to an appointment, we had just come from a group of houses, and as we reached the main road, I saw a lady and her small boy getting out of a taxi just coming from town. She had a big box and two large bags full of cassava and plantain.

She was trying to ask one of the men that worked at a sawmill near the junction to look after her bags while she went home for help.  Elder Kakowa and I hurried over to help. I asked her where she was going (oko-wien) and she told me that she was going to her house (me ko fea). We grabbed the bags from the ground, put them on top of our heads, and began walking with her. I honestly thought it was only going be just down the street, but 15-20 minutes later after climbing over a few fallen trees, and across a small river, then up the slippery hill on the other side, we finally reached the house, sweating like pigs. There were about 5 women sitting outside the house who quickly rushed towards us to help. When one reached up to take the bag from me, I spoke to her in Twi and she acted very surprised that an "obronie" knew some of their language. We placed the goods on the woman's front door then turned to leave. The woman thanked us over and over again, then asked what we were doing in Ghana.  When we told her that we were missionaries, she wanted to learn more about the Church. We had another appointment, but we were happy we left a good impression, and set a time to return.  As we walked away, I looked at Elder Kakowa and said; "now didn't that feel good?" His reply; "ya, now that's missionary work."
The Lord not only puts into our paths people to teach, but hearts to touch. Although we didn't have time to teach those people, we left an impression about the Church that will hopefully be remembered by that family.

This is the gospel of Jesus Christ. This is His church and I'm grateful to hold His Priesthood. I know that it works if we have faith and act when we are prompted to do so.

"Because I have been given much, I too must give..," It is not our priesthood that we hold, but it is His, and we need to use it more often. I know this Church is true. I am one of His representatives and at the coming day, I too will feel the nail marks in His hands and in His feet, and I shall wet His feet with my tears. 

Let us all remember who we are so that we can be forever strong!
Elder Hair

Monday, June 25, 2012

Tired---but it's worth it.

Dear Family,

The baptisms this week went wonderfully. It was a great experience for P and F who entered the waters of baptism with more then one friend waiting to help them change into dry clothing. It's been our goal as a companionship to make sure that our investigators have friends in the Church. It has been easy for us to accomplish that goal when all of the people we have been teaching have come from our branch members. We are even having another baptism next week. The Buokrom Branch is seeing what obedience and hard work can bring to missionary work.

I have become very grateful over the past two years for the country we live in. God has really blessed us with a lot and we REALLY need to be more grateful. Gratitude is a Christlike attribute I want to develop.  I love this gospel very much and know that we can be blessed as we simply live it in our lives.  I am determined to be not just a hearer of the word, but also a doer. 

We are so tired every night, but when I roll into bed its worth it.


Elder Hair