Dear Everybody, July 4, 2011
This week rivals the weeks I had with Elder Ho. where I just woke up every morning feeling like shouting, "I'm a MISSIONARY!!!" Something just clicked flawlessly this week, and I loved every possible minute of it. We found, not the mission's usual 10 new investigators, nor our goal of 11 new investigators... we found TWENTY-FIVE (you can't caps numbers, sadly) new investigators this week. Piles and piles of wonderful Ghanaian families. It's been great. Plus, we taught 38 lessons. It was like we went to sleep last Sunday, and just woke up this Sunday and said "Whoa. What did we just do?"
We have a great family-to-be in John and Mary. John is from Nigeria, and he accidentally mis-dialed Mary on her phone. But they got to talking, and they liked each other, so he came to Ghana to ask her parents permission to marry her. Strange? Yes. But, the fact that they are going to be legally married is a big step, and we are all excited for it. Our lesson with them was kind of a soft Q&A about Church service. One neighbor started blasting music, so I went over and very authoritatively told him to turn it off, we are discussing the Gospel over here. John then asked about why we don't dance or clap at Church. "Why did we just ask our brother to turn down his music?" "Because it was... never mind. I'm clear. I understand now."
The B.'s went through the less active lists, and rounded us up some families too. As we taught Osei, 53, he told us he had never been baptized. As we explained what we believe, he said "I'll be at Church tomorrow." And he was! Susannah, a sister who had been coming by herself for 4 weeks, then suddenly stopped, started telling her family members about the Church. When we finally stopped to see her, her father said, "I'm going to be at your Church next week." and her brother requested a copy of the Book of Mormon. Not bad for an 18 year old! To top it off, on the way to the Cafe today, someone stopped us "Hi! I'm a member from Ho branch. I gave a friend of mine a copy of the Family Proclamation, and she wants to meet you." Seriously, life does not get any better.
I want to share a small story about just how selfless and wonderful Ghanaians are. We were out proselyting with our Executive Secretary, and he saw that my belt was a bit ragged. He didn't bring this up, but the next day, at Church, he said "Elder Farnbach! Here, I bought this for you." Elder Ni. joked "Man, in our countries, people wait until your birthday so they don't have to get you anything." I was touched at the simple kindness. This young man, 26, a return missionary himself, saw a need, and fixed it. What a great man.
The lesson we had in Church this past week was about Faith, and I could easily summarize it like this.
1.) Faith comes first by hearing and learning
2.) Greater faith comes by doing
3.) Perfect knowledge comes by always doing
It's just that simple, really.
We get to meet the new mission president this week. I'm very excited. I'll probably have to come up with a giant list of questions to prepare him for our final interview. "You didn't have the last two years to get to know me, so here is, in brief, what I'm expecting at this last interview. GET CRACKING!!" He sounds like a great man, though. Even talking to him on the phone for a minute, Elder Ne. was very impressed.
I love the Lord. That's why I'm a missionary. Jesus is the Son of God. There is no greater peace then knowing you are doing what is right.
Elder W. Farnbach