Saturday, September 26, 2015

New Companion

Hello Family and Friends!
Another week has passed and this week has definitely been interesting and great. I hope you are enjoying the nice cool weather. Is it getting colder over there. Haha Ghana is heading into the dry season now so it's starting to getting hotter, and it's supposed to hit it's peak in December so it will be interesting to see what that is like.
Monday and Tuesday Elder Tyson and I were able to see some last-minute ward members in 3rd Ward before he leaves and Sister Belinda even made us food which was really nice. (I can't remember the name but it's like Bonku) 
Wednesday rolled around and it was hard to see Elder Tyson go because he was a great guy and I learned a lot from him, but I was excited to get my new companion as well! 
So Elder Larsen (Our Zone Leader) and I spent some of the day together, and later in the afternoon we got a call from Elder Kano saying that the tro heading to Swedru left about 10 minutes ago so they should be there shortly. That's when I got really nervous. I was nervous throughout the day, but when we headed to the station my heart was pounding. So Elder Larsen and I got to Texaco and we waited for 5 minutes and then Elder Bowmah (Our new zone leader) spotted us and took us over to the tro where I met my new companion and the new elders for Swedru 3rd ward.
So my companion is.... Elder Montgomery! He stepped off the tro and said, "Hey,  you're my trainer." He must recognized me from my picture. We got all of their stuff into 2 taxis and headed to nine-nine junction where we stay. I showed all of them the apartment and showed them around and I helped Elder Montgomery with his bags and put them in our room. After we dropped the bags we talked a little bit about the area  and about ourselves and then we headed out. So Elder Montgomery is from Bountiful Utah. He played Rugby, football, sang in choir, did some acting, and wants to become Biochemical Engineer. So pretty well rounded guy with big plans! 
Elder Montgomery
OH and I forgot to mention...... he is going to Liberia right after training. Crazy right?? Yeah so the Liberia mission just barely re-opened and they are trying to figure everything out with housing. Eight missionaries got re-assigned. Four are here in Cape Coast Mission and 4 are in Accra West Mission. They leave December 8th for Liberia, so I will be Elder Montgomery's only companion here in Ghana, which is pretty cool. I hope he enjoys these 3 months we have together. He is is excited to learn and it is great to learn from him. I know the Lord put him here for these 3 months and with me for a reason. So the first night I took the 3 new elders (our apartment is all new except for me) around Swedru and show everyone where the boundaries are, but I was only in 3rd ward for 2 weeks, so I didn't know it too well but I tried my best to show them around and help them figure things out.
Elder Montgomery and his MTC companion
The rest of this week was really great! Elder Montgomery and I went through training and he actually was able to commit a girl named Amy to be baptized! She stays by our chapel and her mother sells kelewele and we invited her to church and she came. So we talked with her and Elder Montgomery gave her a baptismal date and I hope all works out for her. As for  Paa Joe and Vida we talked to them again and introduced them to my new companion and really committed them to their marriages (to get them done) so they both can be baptized. We also went around and showed Elder Montgomery the members and where they stayed and he got to know them and that was really great. Our Area is going really well and I hope to help Elder Montgomery enjoy and love the people for the small time that he his here. 
Swedru Stadium
 On Monday we had a Zone Activity at Swedru Stadium and we played American Football and we had some fan ice afterwards. My companion actually caught 3 passes for the other team in American Football and they all called him the MVP, so he is pretty legit. I actually got sunburned from the sun so I look like a tomato right now. Training is different for sure and I am learning a lot just from this first week.I know that the Lord has a purpose for me training at this time and for Elder Montgomery being here at this time and I hope to continue to learn and grow from this experience But everything is going well over here ! I hope you guys are doing well, and I will talk to you next week! Stay strong!

Elder Harward

Thursday, September 17, 2015

New Trainer Assignment

Hello Family and Friends! I am so excited to be writing to you again this week, and I am so grateful for all of the letters that you guys have written me. Thank you! This week has been a great week, and I have  been edified and have learned so much from being out here.

 Monday night Elder Tyson and I went to the Edem Family's house for FHE, but we got lost. We tried to figure it out,  but I don't know 3rd ward as well as Elder Tyson and it was really dark,  so we had to take a taxi and ended up by getting off at the wrong spot, so we had to call a brother from the ward and he came with us to help and eventually Brother Edem came and found us haha! Once there we gave a lesson on the atonement by using and object lesson with candy: one person does push ups and the other people choose whether they take the  candy or not? So Brother Edem did the push ups and the his children were just laughing. We talked about the Savior, and how he atoned for us. Now it's up to us whether we take the atonment in our lives every single day or if we waste it. Afterwards we had some nice Bonku, which was good!
Transfer News! So on Tuesday Night and I received an unexpected call from an unknown number.  I picked it up and the person said, "Hello Elder Harward this is Elder Mocke." I said hi knowing he is one of the assistants, and I really wasn't processing why he was calling me until he said , "So this is on behalf of President Stevneson" That's when my heart dropped and he told me that... I am going to train! WOW!  I was so shocked, I had no idea and was speechless for a while;  but I said  I accepted
The new trainers
the call and would be at the meeting on Friday. There are 26 or so new missionaries coming into the mission so that means according to president Stevenson,  52% of the mission will be in training starting on Wednesday. Crazy right? in fact 8 of my MTC group who just finished training will be training this  transfer!

So on Friday I departed for Cape Coast for the Trainer's Meeting! I had to take a Tro Tro all by myself to Winneba and there I met up with Elder Kano,  Elder Wadsworth,  and Sister Naumbeti (who are also training) The ride was very nice, and I love looking at the view of Africa. The scenery is so great so every time we ride in a tro tro I look at the green trees noting how Ghana is such an incredible place! So finally we arrived at the Olla Chapel in Cape Coast and I met with my other MTC's who were also training and we talked small. Then after we talked small we all had lunch. Again another great lunch, with Jollof and Chicken this time and I was definitely satisfied. After lunch then we had the instruction and it was SO good. One point I would like to mention (President Stevneson also mentioned this at zone conference) was 2 triangles:  (Sorry it's better if drawn out) One normal and the other upside down. So take the normal triangle and put an arrow going up to the top of the triangle to the point and that's like the boss and everybody underneath makes the boss look good (so like the world's view). Now take the upside-down triangle and start at the point and draw an arrow going to the bottom. At the point is the Savior Jesus Christ and Thomas S. Monson,(this is the Church's view) and really the arrow going down is service so the boss really is trying to help and serve everyone. President Stevenson put us on the bottom and told us how we are being served and how we are serving right now; and that we aren't the "boss" in the companionship but that we are there to really serve to together and work together as a companionship and that our calling as Trainers was really an additional way to serve. Really cool right? I love that! The meeting was really great, and I took notes (Of course, because I'm nervous).
On Saturday the Stake President Spoke as well as our Zone Leaders about working with members. After the meeting all the elders went to the chop bar and there I had some nice FuFu with Palm Nut soup and it was delicious, haha although this time the soup seemed a lot hotter than normal, but it was all good! So Saturday is the day of the transfer news so I wasn't nervous because I had already received my news on Tuesday, but I was really excited to hear about Elder Tyson. Come to find out, he was called to be a new zone leader. Later we all went to the local chop bar called Secret Corner (They really like us, and they are super great!) and discussed how he is going to Proso. I am really happy for him. I know that he will be a great Zone Leader.
On Sunday, Elder Tyson and I had Sister Yaa's Baptism (for 3rd ward) during investigators class and she was confirmed during the 3rd ward service and I got to stand in the circle. That was really neat and I was super excited and happy for her. After Church Elder Tyson was saying goodbye and taking pictures with all of the members and that was really great.
That's all for this week! So I've been out for 3 months now. Crazy right? But the work is great here, and the people are awesome. I hope and pray for the best for all of you. I hope you all have a great week, and I will talk to you soon, about all of my fun adventures getting a new companion and training him as well.  Until then stay Strong. :)
Elder Harward

Monday, September 7, 2015

Saying goodbye to Elder Day and hello to Elder Tyson

Hello Family and Friends!

Wow, these past weeks have been crazy, and I apologize for last week: My time got cut from the Internet Cafe and I tried to come back last Tuesday, but the light was out, so I had to wait until today, but everything is going well over here.

So Swedru Week 10- This week was a weird and a sad week all at the same time. After Elder Day and I emailed we went to the Atta Family's house for FHE and it was really great. SO that night Elder Day and I come home and we were just chilling and talking to the other Elders in our apartment when Elder Day gets a call from the assistants that he was being transferred to the office on Friday. Crazy right? I was surprised. I thought we would finish training before he got transferred but the Lord needs him there and he is going to be the mission secretary in about 4 weeks after Elder Stoddard goes home, so President Stevenson wanted him to learn all the duties so he could be ready by Friday. This was crazy to all of us because we knew Elder Hekking was going home on Thursday due to medical reasons, so from Thursday to Friday our apartment went from 4 men to 2 men and that was crazy. So this week Elder Day and Elder Hekking were saying goodbye to people and making sure people were prepared for them to leave. When I had to say goodbye to both of them, it was bitter sweet, because it's hard to see people go, but I know that the Lord has plans for Elder Day in the Office as well as Elder Hekking with life at home, as well as for us.
Last time together and an exchange of a tie.

 The Lord knew that for my last 2 weeks that my Companion Elder Tyson and I needed to be together. So yeah Elder Tyson and I are companions and we will be together for about 1 more week as companions and then we are getting new companions, and right now we are in charge of 2 areas! So we are busy, but it's all good and I am learning so much form him and he is a great guy. He is from Ghana and he knows Twi and Fante really well, so I am trying to pick up some from him and he is really funny.
Swedru Week 11- As for this week, Elder Tyson and I spent our first week together and I have learned so much from him. For Sundays we have been to both Sacrament meetings, so we had church from 8 in the morning to 3 in the afternoon. It's pretty intense, but I learn so much from church and 3rd ward is a great area and the people are so friendly as well.

Straight Outta Swedru

 Elder Tyson and I have been splitting up the days between his area and mine and it has been great to learn from him, and his area is really sweet! Elder Tyson got the call this week that he will be instructing for zone Conference this next week, and I am excited for him because he will be great!

 So this next week is also the transfer calls, so we shall see what happens, but Elder Tyson and I are thinking that this next week that we are just getting new companions, but we shall see. Transfers can be crazy as I have seen so far haha. That's all for these 2 past weeks! I hope you guys are doing well and I pray for you all, that you are all doing well. Stay strong, and I will talk to you soon! :)
Elder Harward

Elder Tyson's awesome Jollof!

I'm not sure what to caption here. Any ideas?