Monday, November 30, 2015

Fufu, Juju and Moomoo.


Hey there fam! This week was well...hard I guess. Just a long week of work. With the area being split our attention has been placed hard into exploring more of our area. I always tell my companion that an area can be open for over a year or more and some places have never seen missionaries. Areas here are just so big. A lot of walking and good old-fashioned contacting. Serving in Kumasi has ups and downs. For one thing, everyone you try to contact is a "mente Brofo" (no English). I feel that's something very unique that this mission gets; Not being able to teach about 77% of the people you meet. One day they'll hear the gospel. The football news has been going everywhere and my guys from Barca beat Madrid 4-0, much to the disappointment of Elder Lindley. I tried the same trick I pulled on Elder Argo to get him to e-mail you telling you how wonderful I am, but it backfired. Mrs. Lindley's going to be very happy with the praise I'll send her haha. We had a man we didn't expect come to church today. Brother Akwasi. He has a wife and two little kids. Wife can't speak English and they have a busy schedule. We're trying. It's very fun to be around the greenies and the comments they make about Ghana. I've been really enjoying the guitar in the apartment. OH I FORGOT!! I finished Isaiah this week! Wow what a book. I've got the Babylonian stories and prophecies still, but then on again to the New Testament. Hoping to get there around Christmas time. Speaking of that, I guess I turn 20 this week. Gotta say it feels a little weird, but no different from any other day.  I say it’s time for a real cake in Kumasi. Maybe I'll pick one up to celebrate with the apartment. I'm just glad that no one in the apartment knows about the tradition of pouring a bucket of water my head. Let's see what else..... um... Sunday was the primary presentation. Cute little kids. One of my favorites, named Junior went up and said, "IF YOU LOVE ME KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS!" It was then followed by a hearty "Amen" from the congregation. The Branch is doing alright. Still plenty of rough spots, but those will smooth out with time. It's cool to hear about Ashley's homecoming. So she summed her mission up with “Fun, Hard and Worth it” eh? I think I'll summarize with, "Fufu, Juju, and Moomoo". Yep, that about does it. Haha, well It's great to hear from everyone again. 

Greet one another with an holy kiss and have a great week! 

-Elder Silva


Hoh boy I don't even know where to start. Two letters from you in one week is a little too much, although it was fun to see the progression of events. Okay, let me just talk about my news first. SO! Lots of news. umm..... We have changed from a 2 man apartment to a 6 man. I honestly love the change as it is not so lonely. My Stake Missionary companion is good and is a hard worker. Elder Lindley just finished his training and was transferred to my apartment in Atonsu. He is now training Elder Merchant. Elder Lindley is good fun and is experienced for being on mission for only 3 months. Elder Merchant believes he will never adjust and he asks questions that I have to ask myself "did I ask questions like that when I came?" I probably did. We all assure him that he'll adjust and that missionary work is sweet. Elder Bernasko is a Ghanaian who has been on for 6 months. He is training Elder Ballard. They are a quieter pair that seem to match pretty well. Their room is like a black hole. Once they go in, they don't come out haha. Everyone is great and Elder Bernasko has a nice guitar. I nearly cried when I played it. Our area being split in two is strange, but a big relief. Both areas are huge and Elder Lindley is coming from a small town in Obuasi. Everyone is a little overwhelmed, but in good spirits. Unfortunately we did not have any investigators at church this week, BUT we had an in-active member come. This Sunday we got to watch the Saturday Afternoon session of Conference. In English! Boy it was really nice to understand everything in church for once. Conference seems to have been a very good one. I had the new missionaries fooled. They all thought I spoke fluent Twi, until I told them I couldn't speak worth a darn. Maybe I'm learning more than I think. As for teaching in Twi it's still not something we're supposed to do but alas contacting this week was Twi, Twi, and more Twi people. We ended up teaching some of them in Twi, because of my Ghanaian companion, and as usual I fell asleep. Some investigators seem okay, but full days of recidence after recidence makes for one tired missionary. I made up for it by buying cranberry juice today. Pure heaven. I'm pleased to say I'm almost finished with Isaiah! I took a short break, but I came back to it. After that I'll have the Babylonian portions and then I'm finished with the great Old Testament! Boy what an adventure. Wow I've written this much and I haven't even written about your letters yet. Oh I got the Halloween package and the candy corn was a big melted mush. It's alright though. The ants came marching in, but I froze them away in the fridge. Ebeyiyi (it shall be well). Ghana is now approaching the Hamatan season. ...Hot and dry. A bit like summer back home, except hotter. I feel it already although I can console myself knowing that it is the last Hamatan I will have to go through. Enjoy the week and read your scriptures. 

-Elder Silva

 Last day with one of my favorite comps – Ejo. So long buddy!

 Melted candy corn.  The taste is all that matters!  Haha

Snake! (half of one anyways)

Thursday, November 12, 2015

The popcorn hawker didn't hear me calling for her in the tro this afternoon :(

Nov. 2, 2015

We'll I've gotta say this is one of your best letters. Umm, not that I rate them or anything, or that I'm not grateful you send other letters, or umm. Okay disregard all of that. I love all of your letters! This week we had 2 baptisms! Their mother is the investigator, but we're working through some things before we get around to baptizing her. Yes I did dress up for halloween and I will send plenty of pictures. Speaking of that It's been awhile since I've sent pictures, so I'll be sure to send them this time. I also realize that I don't talk a whole lot about my weeks. Yeah it seems a bit mundane to me, but I'll try to think of something. We keep running into our investigator’s (the one we're working with on baptism) brother. He lived in London for a few years during which he joined a gang and spent time in prison. He ended up coming back to Ghana and he has a funny accent. He likes to say "innit?" alot. He's the extra smile for those days innit? I cooked on Sunday with mama C.  She shared with me her conversion story. Originally she hated the church because of all the rumors she heard about money, blood, sacrifice, you know; the usual (not exaggerating). She saw a missionary joking with a girl and told the girl in Twi that she should not behave like that because he was a man of God. To her surprise, the American Elder understood and said in Twi, "Efawohuben?" is it your business? She was embarrassed. Later on the missionary saw her again and said "ah the gossip girl." They taught her and she was baptized. She's the primary president and she claims that she is in love with the church.

Alright onto the e-mail. Sounds like Halloween was pretty uneventful. Usually is I suppose. I still enjoy dressing up though. Trunk or Treat always had really good chilli. If not there, then there's a nice couple in the meadowbrook area that gives superb chilli to those who come back home. You know the gospel has become a lot more real to me since coming out on a mission. I don't know how else to put it. I wish I could say I was super good at living according to God's will, but mistakes still happen. It's tough to keep that eternal perspective 24/7. I figure that I'd better learn it better before I get to living in the world all on my own. Mom mentioned highs and lows (reminds me of a good song by Courage My Love). I try not to mention lows, but I was deeply disturbed today when I woke up without the carne asada (from my dream).  I realized that the room was messy and I needed to clean it. I'm out of fruit in the fridge again. I forgot to fill up my water bottles. The popcorn hawker didn't hear me calling for her in the tro this afternoon. It looks like it's about to rain again, and last but not least; the kitten I tried to pet ran away from me terrified. Well I suppose it feels kinda good to get all of that off my chest. Well,  I'm getting closer to 18 months. Here birthdays aren't really celebrated too much. Usually a gift like some kind of cake or baked thing or something and a big bucket of water poured on them. Happened to me last year while I was exercising. Took forever to mop it all up. I won't lie, it's actually kind of scary that I'm turning 20. True, age is just a number, but my life won't be directed like it is now by my next birthday. Guess that's kind of exciting too. 
Once again, I love you all. I don't get tired of saying that. I noticed you sent a couple of other e-mails. I'll get around to checking those out in a bit. 

Have a great week! 

-Elder Silva

Nov. 9, 2015

I didn't get your letter this week. I know sometimes it doesn't send. If you just didn't write then I'll assume you're MIA, down with malaria or busy playing with the cat. I don't have much time this time around, but transfer news came. Elder Annan is leaving and my new companion is actually a Stake missionary, which hasn’t happened before.  Also my District is now full of greenies. Atonsu is getting an extra companionship so my area is being split in two. A big relief for me. Two areas was too much. The new Elder coming is American. He just finished his training and he's coming to train a new missionary. It'll be us 4 in the apartment.  Also I'm likely to have this Stake missionary for 1 transfer. If so then that will be my 5th companion in a row I've had for only 1 transfer. Strange things happening in this mission. Also thank you so much for getting those letters out to my companions going home. They called me to tell you thank you so much. Things are looking good investigator-wise. I'm out of time, but I'll say more next week. 

Love you all! 

-Elder Silva

Lake Bosomtwe. Can’t swim, but we had a good soccer game.

Our sink was torn up, so we're filtering water from the bathroom. 
...Also where we do our dishes. Ha

Mama C.  We were cooking spaghetti. The smell reminded me of Sundays back home. 

 This little girl didn’t want to go to Primary, so she kept me busy in Elders Quorum.

Happy Halloween!

Primary!!  (Yep, time for a haircut)