Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Hello Haatso!!

Dear Family,

Goodbye Tema! 

Taylor saying goodbye to  'Fat Albert'...

Taylor with Godwin...he reminds Taylor of 'Grandpa Bradshaw'

Honestly I really wasn’t sad to leave Tema. 
Yes, I was sad to leave my investigators...but I was ready for a change. 

Tema was a great area, and I had a great opportunity to find and teach some incredible people there.  I have never worked and looked so hard for something.  It was so difficult to find those people, and it literally hot and cold, black and white, there was no middle ground.  You were awesome or you were not, and often we were not. 

I would have been willing to stay...but at the same time I am happy to go.  Hatsso seems to be a blessed area.  It is full of potential...a whole lot of people like Godwin.  Even in just the few days I have been here I have seen that the potential of this area is unlike anything I have previously experienced! 

My companion is great!  He just finished his training and now is so willing to learn and work.  He sucks up all that I throw at him, which is totally different than my last companion, its nice to be appreciated.  It definitely makes me a whole lot more excited to share what I have learned.  His name is Elder Johnson, he grew up in Oregon, did a semester at BYU before he came, and his family now lives in American Fork!  Small world isn’t it!  You will have to see if you guys can go to dinner with them sometime or something, they seem like great people.   (From Kim:  Our doorbell rang last night and there was this super sweet lady, holding a plate of cookies that said...'Hello my name is Emily Johnson...and our sons are companions!'  She stayed to talk for about 30 minutes and we love her...I think Taylor and her son Alex will get along great!)

This area is full of just incredible people and they haven't been taught or even talked to in nine months!  I am so excited to see what is out there for us to find in the upcoming weeks. 

Okay, so before I left, do you remember how I told you that no matter what I didn't want to serve on a college campus?  I thought that in Ghana I was pretty safe.  But...be careful what you say...because yep...starting on the 5th of February, Elder Johnson and I are not only responsible for the huge cities of Haatso and Madina...but we are also responsible for 50,000 University students from the University of Ghana!  Aaah!  Stressful, and overwhelming for sure...but also I am now so excited! 

I previously thought it would just be so hard to be walking around talking to a bunch of people that are my same age, let alone they are probably the most uninterested age group of people toward the message that we share.  But now that I look at it...it's a collection of the smartest and most educated people in Ghana!  The University of Ghana is to Ghana what Harvard is to the U.S.  Pretty sweet. 

President asked us to make it one of the main focuses of our teaching, and to really focus more on it than it has been in the past.  Apparently, the same council has been given for some time now, but due to, I guess a desire to get numbers, or to avoid the tough investigators, it has been severely neglected.  Our ward is great!  They are willing to work with us.  They are excited with our game plan of looking for those that are elect, rather than those who just join and fall away...and we have the right team for the job.  Elder Honour and I are back together! Not the same apartment, but the same district and ward, which has been kinda fun!  It's been so amazing to see where we were when we were together a year ago...and to be away for so much time...but then still be able to come together and have learned a lot of the same things.  We've been able to teach together even thought its been so different than when we were together in Koforidua.  It's a difficult thing to explain, but it really built my testimony of how the Spirit is really what teaches us.  Yes, we have our separate experiences, our different companions, but we have the same love for The Book of Mormon, and having based our testimony and our teaching on that, has allowed the spirit to bring us to the same place. 

I feel so scatter brained today, like my email didn’t make any sense, but I am just excited to be where I am!  The area is sweet, my companion is a great guy, my apartment is literally a circle which is a bummer, but I am excited to see where things go.  I have a lot of work to do, a lot of different things to worry about now, but its going to be so great.  I finally have people that understand at a level that makes it fun to teach, not the normal, “does your church drink blood” kind of questions but I can actually share scriptures to prove a point, and they understand!  It's really strange, but so great!

So...how are you feeling about this transfer.
-so happy about it!   

What’s your companionship situation?

Apartment situation?
-believe me here...it's about the size of Elli's room....But it doesn't stop there, its a circle.  Like not even kidding!  We can't both be in the kitchen at one time.  You have to open a door, step in, get behind it and then close it.  There isn't even enough room to step to either side ha ha.  It's not bad though, so we can keep it nice and clean.  Which, by the way, I didn't just clean my last apartment like crazy when inspections were coming, I always live like that now.  I told you I was different now. (From Kim:  Taylor sent a picture of a very official-looking certificate signed by his president awarding him and his flat-mates the 'clean apartment award' for the 4th quarter last year!)

Any special reason or instructions from the President for this transfer?
-I'm here for the university, and to change the focus from teaching those in 4x4ft. shacks to 4 story homes.  I'm here to help Elder Johnson to get where he needs to be after a difficult training experience, which again makes me so grateful for my training again.  I have an opportunity to try and by an 'Elder Larsen' in the life of Elder Johnson. And also, I am here to split the ward.

What happened to Elder Nondala and Elder Halavaka?
-Elder Halavaka stayed with Elder Mabizela, and Elder Nondala is with another Elder Johnson still in Tema.

Well I love you all so much!

out of time


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