Elder and Kids

Elder and Kids

Monday, January 30, 2017

Goodbye Elder Tugume, Hello Elder Robert

Hello all!

Well my stomach is grumbling and not in the good way. One of the meals we ate at a members yesterday is not sitting well with Elder Johnson. Grumbling stomachs are just part of the Ghana Cape Coast mission I guess.

Elder Tugume and Elder Johnson

Elder Robert and Elder Johnson

We had our transfers on Wednesday! The process went very well and did not cause to much stress to me. Elder Tugume is now in Cape Coast and Elder Robert is here in Takoradi with me. I sent the missionaries to Cape Cost by 10am and we received the new missionaries at 3pm or so. Takoradi zone is now the biggest zone in the mission with 27 missionaries. The change has been good but hard on me because our district was the sweetest and Elder Tugume and I were really really close.

From Thursday to Sunday we were walking. My exhaustion levels were high so it was nice to sleep last night especially with the breeze and rain storm. We have a really cool new investigator! Her name is Elizabeth. She went to some church that I do not remember the name but Elder Robert knows the church and says they are crazy. There are a lot of interesting churches around west Africa. Elizabeth has a baptism date of 18th February. Sadly did not come to church yesterday because there was a funeral going on (funerals are a big thing around here).

My salad creation #1

My salad creation #2

Rainy season has also started again which is really nice. After leaving a members house where we had lunch the thunder and lightning rolled in and the rain came down hard. left Elder Robert and I stranded for 30 minutes. Elder Robert and I are also putting the finishing touches on our instruction for zone conference tomorrow. The theme of the conference is about the commitment pattern. It is sweet finding scriptures and thinking of some sweet things to do.

Zone picture at our combined district meeting

The Tanokrom District! Minus the skinny Samoan in the front

My thought of the week today has to do with the Book of Mormon. Something I told Elder Robert is I love to read the Book of Mormon with my recent converts. Here it can be hard to get people to read since the understanding is small. I know there is such a great power in the Book of Mormon. Reading the Book of Mormon each day provides us with spiritual protection. Even reading any scripture of church talk. I love to read it for that reason and there are so many things to learn from the bible and the Book of Mormon. Are each of us doing something each day to protect ourselves spiritually? We may not see the protection but i can assure you it is there when you C (keep the commandments) P (Pray each morning and night R (read the scriptures)

Love you all!  Elder Johnson

Monday, January 16, 2017

Transfer Week January 2017

Hello friends and family!!

Transfers are this week and I am actually really happy but really sad at the same time. On Saturday night we found that Elder Tugume is leaving and Elder Roberts from Nigeria will be my next companion. They are adding a new companionship to the zone. Wednesday will be interesting with 20 missionaries leaving the western region and 20 coming to us. Elder Tugume and I make the transport arrangements for the transfers in Western region. Since we are not cool enough to have vans like other missions oorrrrr A/C ;)

Today I just want to share this thought with you from the 1991 general conference entitled "Be thou and Example". To lead into it most of us know a scripture in 1 Timothy 4:12 which reads.... "Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity."

"A believer is someone who follows and knows the teachings of Christ not only in his mind but also in his heart and whose actions are a witness of that belief. It isn’t easy to be an example of the believers. We don’t usually wake up in the morning and say, “Today I’m going to be an example of the believers!” Yet we can say, “Today I will be kind and thoughtful, or considerate, or honest, or whatever quality I need to work on.” And then we will try hard all day to make a conscious effort to do so. That we can do!"

Have a great week!  -- Elder Johnson

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

I Want to Help by Smiling and Being Kind

Hello my people!!!

I am telling you these weeks just keep going on and on quicker and quicker. Which is good but also not at the same time.

As for last week it is all just blurred together. It has been said for the last 18 months that I will try to un-blur my weeks but by this point in my mission I give up :P The 2 major things that happened are first, the Mission Leadership training. Instead of it just being the Zone leaders and the Sister training leaders this time it was with all the District leaders. They talked about companion exchanges, proper district meeting, and President talked about Leadership attributes. It was a nice long meeting as usual. Some say it was boring and others say it was a sweet meeting. I say sweet but it all depends others brains and if they wanted to learn something new or not.

Thursday evening we had 3 companionships for Tarkwa zone come and stay with us before there follow up trainers meeting on Friday in Cape Coast. We ended up going to the Best Western to eat some nice food. What I found funny, one of the Americans that was there for the first time (been out for a month or so) said that being inside the hotel feels like he is back home haha. That was the same way I reacted the first time being there. The head MTC cook was there on her little vacation away from Accra. She remembered each of us, not only the tag but each of our special needs with food. She remembers that she gave me soy milk because the "milk" we had wrecked my stomach. One thing she said I loved so much... " You missionaries are away from home and everything you once knew. You are nervous and scared what is to come. I want to help by smiling and being kind and helping each of you feel comfortable." Do we smile? Do we help others feel comfortable? Have we tried to make a frown turn upside down?

Sunday was wonderful! I enjoy going to church each week even though I can hardly understand what they say haha. After church Elder Zohner and Elder Taleni called us to come to a members house from their ward. Sister McCarthy is the coolest lady ever! I was really hungry because I did not eat that morning so a nice big plate of Jollof with rice, fried plantain, and fish hit the spot. After we took the Elders to our member to eat. We sat and waited a while which was ok to let the last meal digest. Sister Amanful brought in a huge plate of boiled cassava and stew with chicken and malts (I do not like malts). At the end we were all overloaded with food. The most painful meal of my life but really good at the same time.

Mosiah 16: 6-12

6 And now if Christ had not come into the world, speaking of things to come as though they had already come, there could have been no redemption.

7 And if Christ had not risen from the dead, or have broken the bands of death that the grave should have no victory, and that death should have no sting, there could have been no resurrection.

8 But there is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath no victory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ.

9 He is the light and the life of the world; yea, a light that is endless, that can never be darkened; yea, and also a life which is endless, that there can be no more death.

10 Even this mortal shall put on immortality, and this corruption shall put on incorruption, and shall be brought to stand before the bar of God, to be judged of him according to their works whether they be good or whether they be evil—

11 If they be good, to the resurrection of endless life and happiness; and if they be evil, to the resurrection of endless damnation, being delivered up to the devil, who hath subjected them, which is damnation—

12 Having gone according to their own carnal wills and desires; having never called upon the Lord while the arms of mercy were extended towards them; for the arms of mercy were extended towards them, and they would not; they being warned of their iniquities and yet they would not depart from them; and they were commanded to repent and yet they would not repent.

Love you all!  Elder Johnson

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

I Have Seen the Light

Hello friends and family!

My memory is pretty bad when I email on Monday's but now I am emailing on Tuesday which makes my memory that much worse. Yesterday we had a stake activity at the chapel all day (10-5) so no time to email yesterday. In the morning I had a ton of laundry to catch up on because I have been lazy for some time. Hand washing is actually really nice because all I need to do is throw a pair of clothes in a bucket with washing powder and wash it in the shower. Elder Zohner and I have joked that our parents will find us in the bathroom washing our clothes in the bathtub haha. 

President and Sister Stevenson's dead battery - Tugume and Johnson to the rescue

One thing that happened on Tuesday that was my favorite part of the day was a sweet member present lesson. We were teaching our recent convert, Esther, who is a very sweet girl. We brought our other recent convert, Frieda, and though there is a 5 year difference they made a awesome connection. There is nothing more to love then seeing your recent converts continue to work up the path. There is times that I have seen that missionaries baptize someone and then after a couple weeks they do not come to church again. I am happy that in our last MLC President Stevenson talked about the qualifications of baptism so we can avoid as much as possible people to go in active after 2 weeks.

We also had our interviews with President Stevenson on Wednesday. Elder Tugume and I were first on the list. He usually keeps it pretty short but mine was a little longer because he was talking about different things. Telling me about what is happening in the office and things that the Brethren are making changes to with missionaries like our daily schedule... wonder what that will be like. His car battery also was dead at the end of the day and we just happened to bet there when the interviews were done. We went searching for jumper cables but no luck. We called Elder Zohner to get the from some members that had some and called the stake president.

Thursday was a great day because I was able to see my "son". He is now ONE year on mission which is crazy. Elder Maumau... lets just say I miss him so much. Really grateful for the time I was given to be his companion; he taught me so many different things that he may not even know. Later that day we started our exchange with one of the 3 district leaders in our zone. Elder Masame came to be with me and my companion went to Sekondi to be with the DL. Elder Masame sadly got to take part in a not so fun thing. I can not say all the details because there is a lot... but President Ad-je whom is the 2nd counselor in the Mission Presidency gave me a call Thursday evening to come to Praises house(baptized her a couple weeks ago). Her Mother is not happy with her at all with things she has been doing so we were called for back up haha. Praise needs to open her eyes to reality... just looking down on everyone around her and it shows.

Friday was really sweet because Brother and Sister Akroma invited us over to there house as a district. They own a nice hotel near our apartment and their house is on the same property as the hotel. Big old spread of food on the table and drinks. Members around us is who plays a big part in making mission a enjoyable experience. Missionaries in the Denver, Colorado mission here I come!!!!

Saturday, Elder Tugume and I went to the Tanokrom chapel to be with Frieda while she was working on her family history work. I love family history work. I regret not working on it while I was at home but will be something I work on after mission. Since I have learned the doctrine behind why we do family history it brought a stronger desire to work on family history. And Sunday Elder and Sister Clements invited us to their house. By the time we got there the other missionaries forgot about common courtesy and ate most of the food. Love and patience were worked that afternoon.... Sister Clements taught us about the "signs the Jews missed" when Jesus Christ was born. In Luke 2 we learned a lot of things. SYMBOLS SYMBOLS SYMBOLS. His birth itself testifies of His mission.

" I have seen the light"... I have gone far through the mission tunnel and now in the last 6 months can see the light.   Love you all,   Elder Johnson