Elder Harris, Portia and Gordella

Monday, November 30, 2009


This has been a long, hard week for Elder Akoki and I with only a little to show for it unfortunately. Most of our work has been with some less actives in a town called Ahinsan which is a good walk from our apartment and we have been visiting there twice a day. None of the less actives we were working with came to church yesterday. We even loaned this one guy some pants but he still didn't show up.

On the bright side our investigator Williams came to church for the third time in a row yesterday. He is really progressing well, now we just need to finish the lessons. He told us that when we was going home from church last sunday he took a tro tro full of people. One guy asked him if he was a Mormon. Having only known about the church for two weeks, Williams told the man that he didn't know what a Mormon was. The man explained that the Latter Day Saints worship Mormon and Joseph Smith. Other people in the tro tro agreed. Williams, who can be fond of arguing, stood up for the church and the Book of Mormon telling all the people on the tro tro that it is another testament of Jesus Christ and that the church doesn't worship Mormon. He told them that the Book of Mormon works with the Bible and together they give us the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. After only two weeks of learning, Williams stood up for the church against at least ten people in a crowded tro tro bus. After the baptism last week, he asked us when his would come and we told him there are still a few steps to take before he could be baptized. He really is ready.

Thanksgiving was awesome this week. Our district is fortunate to have Elder and Sister Kiffer who made us a true Thanksgiving meal with chicken, stuffing, real mashed potatoes, homemade rolls, cranberries, and sweet potatoes. I was more full than i've ever been before. Pretty sweet.

Theres not much else going on here. Just work every day and lots of walking. I'm still enjoying myself a whole transfer period in. Tonight we find out if any of us are leaving. Elder Akoki and I probably won't be but Elder Adjeifio will probably go and Elder Lehr might be training. I really hope they don't leave yet. We will also be having new greenies coming on Wednesday so it will be sweet to see someone newer than me.

Monday, November 23, 2009


"Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain..." (John 15:16)

The overall goal for the Ghana Cape Coast Mission is to bring forth fruit that remains by focusing on families, future leaders, member referrals, and less active members. We have no interest in helping people be baptized if they are just going to become inactive.

Over the past few months, the Lord has revealed through President Sabey a series of goals to help strengthen the mission. Evidence of this divine leadership is found in the fact that every goal thus far has been accomplished, sometimes against incredible odds. The Lord's purpose, I think, is to help every one in the mission increase his or her faith and remember that it is only though Him that we can have any degree of success.

The first goal was simple enough: Every missionary was to baptize a family in the space of about 4 to 5 months. This was accomplished without much difficulty.

The second goal proved to be more difficult. In addition to another family, every missionary was to baptize a future leader or a person who speaks english, has a phone, and is self sufficient. During the last week of the goal, it seemed that it would be accomplished. Unfortunately, one companionship's future leader ditched out on his baptism. President Sabey told this discouraged companionship to keep the font filled and the entire mission held a fast. On the last day of the goal, they were teaching a future leader and his family about baptism. At the end of the lesson, they extended the invitation to be baptized and the investigator said yes. Furthermore he agreed to be baptized that very day and the goal was accomplished.

The next goal added upon the first too again. Every missionary was to baptize a family, future leader, and a member referral. This was accomplished with mission fasts again.

The goal before I arrived in Kumasi helped us to prepare for the currant goal we are working on now. It required every missionary to become one with the members in his area by completing 5 service projects and 15 member visits. He was to know 80% of the names in his ward and on top of that he wasn't allowed to accept free meals. These new requirements are still in affect today. This goal has helped change the culture of the church in Western Ghana and has really helped us with our work. According to President Sabey it has also helped us to become more Christ-Like.

Our currant goal is completely new and as far as I understand, is completely unique to our mission. By February 28th, 2010, every companionship is to help a less active member come back to activity and then baptize one of his or her friends. By bringing a less active member and his friend together they can help strengthen each others faith and they will be far more likely to remain active in the church.

I know this goal must be accomplished despite it's difficulty because it comes straight from the Lord. Anyone who has spent anytime with President Sabey knows he is an inspired leader and is completely submissive to the Lord's will concerning this mission. The Lord has prepared a way for all his commandments to be fulfilled so we have faith that we can do this.

Elder Akoki and I have been working very hard with some less active members and their friends. It is interesting to see that they still have very strong testimonies of the church they have been very helpful in the teaching of their investigator friends. I pray that they will begin to come back to church. It is comforting to see that much of the work pertaining to the goal has seemingly fallen in our laps. Most of the less actives we know are friends with a member named Sister Yaa who we just randomly visited one day cause we were in the area. All we did was sing some hymns but it was enough to gain her trust and soon we had a few referrals which are going pretty well. Her own brother Dominique came to church yesterday after a two year absence. It really feels like we aren't leading this work at all, at I think that's the way it should be.

I miss you all at home and wish you a very happy Thanksgiving. I'm pretty sure the couple missionaries are dinner for the District. I'll also be giving my first District Instruction that day. I'm pretty excited!

Elder Harris

On a more personal note:

Hey Momma and Dadda, (this is new)

Today is Monday! As you can see I'm taking a little bit more time this week on the computer as I barely got any last week!

I couldn't look at the pic you sent me. The power is out at the Asokwa cafe so we are in town. I'm pretty sure I will be able to see it next week.

I'm still doing well. Elder Lehr and I both got Christmas stuff and plan on having an amazing dinner one night. We actually cooked our own stew the other day for spaghetti, it was terrible! We had to get some help from Elder Akoki and Elder Adjefio to really make it delicious. I've also been cooking better things like cinnamon toast which is just straight up delicious. So little by little I'm branching out from Indomie.

The work is good. Williams came to church again yesterday and so did a girl we have been teaching for a while names Maa-Abena. We had some baptisms too where I got a pretty good slap of the spirit. Even though I wasn't doing the ordinace (they weren't even my investigators) I was still way excited for them and felt good the rest of day. We were also fasting for the Goal so that really helped.

I think next week I will send my Christmas present. Don't expect any Ghana stuff yet (I might just wait to buy stuff till the end unless I find something really cool). I still think you will like it though.

Elder Jeppesen ran into a scorpion the size of his hand (he's a big kid)! Haha, he totally deserved it. His companion Elder Ikor wanted to take it to the apartment but Jeppesen wouldn't have it. I'm glad he was able to come to Kumasi with me since we have been together since we were roommates in the MTC. We are in the same District.

As for candy, everything is awesome! We have butter here so that's no problem. Sorry but I ate the Cinnamon twizzlers all by my self but I promise to share the other stuff. I'm pretty sure he won't like it any way haha. I also got the Christmas lights, they are pretty awesome. They are really bright too! I'm not sure how much the duty was, I'll go home and check today.

So I love mail, and I write a lot of letters. You can encourage whoever you want to write me. I need Ben Flinder's address too.

So I think I'm running out of time. Sorry I'm all over the place. I can never remember what questions you ask but I try my hardest. Your gonna get some cool letters (if i don't say so my self) from Moi.

I love you both! I miss you both! Dark red is an awesome color (I think...)! Just don't forget the pirates! I got some bleach in my eye the other day and I thought i would soon be a pirate with an eye patch. I also burned myself! TIA.
Theres too much to write about here. I don't think I'll ever be able to write about everything.

Don't worry about me, I'm doing great! Don't forget to write me! Goodbye for now!

Elder Andrew

Monday, November 9, 2009


Hello everyone! This has been a crazy week for me. The following is from my journal:
“Imagine walking up a dirt path on your way to an appointment. In the distance, you can see the huge, dark clouds with lightning that signify rain here in Kumasi. To the right about 2 miles away is where your appointment is. To the left, only about 5 mins away, lies your apartment. If you decide to go home, your night is finished and its only 6:30. The feeling in your heart tells you that you should try to make it to the appointment so you get going. Ten mins later you’re standing under a light tent thing drenched to the bone. Your feelings are now definitely telling you to get back to the apartment, you did your best.”
“If you were standing under one of the porches that line the main road of Kumasi last Tuesday, you would have seen two guys with white shirts and ties running through the worst storm of the season. The crazy white guy in the back is laughing his head off.”
It has rained almost everynight here for the past week. When it rains, IT RAINS, and you had better find shelter. We’ve been caught out in it more than once but this was the worst time.
I’ve been playing the role of Apartment Doctor for the past week. Elder Adjeifio asked me if I was a brave man. Of course my pride prompted me to say yes. He then asked me to help him stuff cotton gauze deep under two of his ingrown toe nails. Of course now I had to really prove that I was brave so I helped him using surgical scissors to stuff the cotton while he gripped the bed in agonizing pain. I get to do this every night. Its a really fun job.
I was almost killed by a drunk driver a couple days ago. I didn’t know he was coming till he swept by me going at least 60 mph within a foot of my leg. Its really hard to love these type of people, but I do my best.
Our work here is still slow, but it is starting to pick up. We are teaching a few investigators and visiting some inactives. I feel like I am getting much better at teaching.
Esther has been taught everything before I came. We still visit her, trying to get her to come to church. She told us that she had a dream and now she wants to get baptized. Of course, the only way to know if she is serious is if she comes to church. Unfortunately, her mother and daughter have recently become very sick and need constant care. Hopefully she will have to time to come to church next Sunday.
We met Priscilla at her home on my second day in the field. She is very smart and interested in our message. So far she has kept her commitments so we gave her a Book of Mormon. She’s in Accra for this whole week, so hopefully she reads and prays about it. Maybe she will come to church this Sunday.
Dennis is the son of Sister Comfort, a regular at our ward in Asokwa. He was baptized a few years ago but started attending a different church when his school proffesor told him that if he did he would get better grades. Of course his grades didn’t go up and now he doesn’t trust any church. We are reteaching him the discussions because he doesn’t seem to remember anything. Hopefully we can bring him back.
Another less active member we are seeing is named Kodjo Antwi. He claims he can’t come to church because of work. While we were talking with him, he saw his friend and wanted us to teach him. This was sweet cause our goal is being accomplished. To our dissapointment, Samuel the friend speaks only Twi. Kodgo had to interpret the entire first discussion for us. Its my hope that by helping us translate, he will feel the spirit again a make a way to come to church.
Yesterday, I got a TON of mail dated from October 13 to the 24th. Most of these were Dear Elders which were all put together so it took a half hour just to organize them into something I could read. I didn’t mind much, I love mail! Please, if you get the chance, write me a quick note. It will make my day. My parents are helping me get some of your addresses so I can write you but it would be easier if you just send them straight to me.
I’ve got to congradulate Elder Jordan Thomas in the MTC. He speaks Spanish so well he’s getting sent out six weeks early with the advanced class. Way to go! Trust me, time goes a billion times quicker out in the field, especially after being locked up for three weeks! I’ve got a letter coming but maybe its out of date now;)
Congrats to my cousin too. She just gave birth to a baby girl! I wish you all the best!!
That’s all for now. I miss you all! If you want to hear from me send me a letter! It might take a while to get here but I’ll try my best to reply.
Elder Harris