Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Nate's Companion - Elder Narine

November 9, 2009

Hello everyone!

I love it here! So this past week was a crazy one. I got to go on tradeoffs with Elder Jones. That kid knows so much about everything. He was taught to be a baptizer pretty much. It's in his genes you might say. However back then they didn't work on retention too much so the 80 he baptized in Rose Hall, only like 5 come to church. But we went around to his inactive converts and had some good lessons with them. I learned a lot from him and it was a great experience. He is an amazing missionary. His wish was to be put in Rose Hall for his last transfer but he got close enough - Canje, which is 20 minutes away.

So we're teaching some great people now. This Chinese guy, Winston, is hilarious. He really wants to find the truth. I gave him a Book of Mormon and taught him about it. Went back Sunday and he was to Alma 28!! He's already read half of it. He's not married legal so before they get baptized they have to get married which is a chore here. We're teaching this girl named SSonia, niece of a member. She is excited about baptism, loves church. It helps to have family in the church. She has two sisters, 14 and 8 years old who love it too. Sonia's 21. We taught the restoration to this guy we met Saturday, Ian, and he LOVES it. He was so excited when I talked about the apostasy. He wants to get baptized and when we gave him a tract he said he'd teach all his friends about Joseph Smith. He didn't dome to church though. That's the hard part, getting people to come to church. We have about 10 people that are solid and want to be baptized but in order to progress them, they need to come to church. We have been working with members more recently which is helping though.

My prayers and fasts are with Grandma. As a zone we fast once a week for help from God and part of mine is for Grandma. I was so sorry to hear about her cancer. I hope everything will work out. Tell he my prayers are with her and that I love her dearly.

Elder Narine and I are doing great together. I'm sending a picture of him with his mission call. He goes to the MTC in 2 weeks. His brother is the one I was with for that one day who was the other picture I sent home. It's different with a Guyanese obviously. I really can't describe what they're like, just completely different. You'll have to meet them to know what I mean. They think we are really weird and stupid for doing things like eating spaghetti or stuff. Haha. Buy the way, get a recipe online for chicken curry and roti and make it. I want you to see how delicious it is. Haha.

I'm sending an email to Bishop Crosby to thank him for his hard work. I love that man. He helped me a lot when I needed it. He was always a good example of love and diligence. Tell Bishop Ed I'm excited to have him as my bishop. I still don't have Megan's email so I can't talk about Dave's surgery with ) that I love them and pray for them always.

Things are going much better here. Baptisms will follow in the coming weeks due to hard work and the Spirit working through me. That's something that I have been seeing so much lately. It really does feel like I am an instrument in God's hands sometimes. I love it!

Elder Morris

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Sister Diane Robison, the wife of Nate's first mission president continues to keep a mission blog of mission happenings. She posted this entry on the mini-missionaries in Guyana on October 3. Because Nate has Brother Narine, and 18 year old mini missionary, right now as a companion, I thought it would be interesting to inclue her post:

" 'For such a time as this,'" Esther 4:14

Just like Esther was specially prepared to save her people, about the 30-40 young men and women in Guyana have been prepared for such a time as this - when most foreign missionaries have been asked to leave the country.

At first I was worried about the work in Guyana, but now I am beginning to see that "no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing" (Standard of Truth). In fact, the expulsion of most foreign missionaries may turn out to be a great blessing to the Church in Guyana.

Here's why

During the time my husband and I were serving in the West Indies, there was a rapid increase in baptisms in Guyana. Many wonderful people embraced the Gospel and were baptized, including quite a few teenagers. In fact, President Robison asked each missionary to 'replace himself' before going home by baptizing a young man who would serve a mission. These young Guyanese men and women are now stepping up to replace the full-time missionaries who were expelled from the country. Fifteen of them will serve missions right away and others are preparing to serve as soon as they are quallified. Special arrangements have been made to expedite the mission calls and to allow some to serve as 18 year olds. As they wait to serve officially, many are serving 'mini missions.'

President and Sister Hymas (he is first counselor in the mission presidency) have been serving in Guyana. Here is their description:

"It is pretty cool to see all these young men lined up at the doctor's office and dental clinics and passport offices etc. Many have never been to the doctor or dentist etc so all very new experience for everyone! Scary and profound all at the same time. None of them own more that 1 white shirt and tie. So getting shirts and ties and other stuff needed to serve has been nothing short of a miracle. Thie members here have all donated money and time and talents--to purchase shirts, make pants, get what "their boys" need to serve the Lord. All the foreign missionaries who left Guyana left shirts and ties for those who would be coming to take their place. We had over 40 shirts and 80 ties donated by those missionaries who were forced to depart.

While those who were approved for calls have been getting ready to serve 15 other young men have been living and working with our missionaries so that the work will keep the moving forward in each of the areas.

A you drive around you see our "new companionships" --one white guy and one Guyanese. We are still out in the streets on the Lord's errand! It is profound to see the local young men taking over for their "brothers" who had to leave. It is the Lord's work and as the scriptures poignantly remind us "...it is the work of men that are frustrated, not the work of God that is frustrated..." It is quite a testimony to be a part of such faithful young men and young women who have willing left jobs, family, friends to alleviate the crisis in the missionary effort in Guyana.

In addition, in three of four of the cases the young men who have answered the call to serve are the primary breadwinner in the family so their departure to serve means their family will take a 30 to 70 percent redution in income. The sacrifice is huge!"

So this is what I am thinking.

Can you imagine what will happen to the Church in Guyana in a few years with 30-40 returned missionaries??? They will bring incredible strength and begin a cycle of temple marriages and righteous families that will make a huge difference!

These young Guyanese Saints are wonderful. Every time we did a zone conference I was amazed at the number and personal strength of the young prospective missionaries who attended. One young man came to a zone conference just a few days after he was baptized. I remember the look of excitement on his face when he received his own copy of Preach my Gospel.

Now I am beginning to see why so many strong young people were led to join the Church in Guyana.

It was - for such a time as this."

November 2, 2009

Howdy folks!

So this week I was put with Elder Narine. He is 18, going into the MTC in the Dominican Republic on November 27th. He is a great companion. It was wierd at first, but we're gonna work hard. It'll be good. I'll only be with him 2 more weeks. Then I'll get someone else. This morning he swept out the WHOLE apartment. He spent an hour cleaning while I was writing letters, etc. that stuff. He's pretty sweet. He can't read very well at all, has a hard time teaching, but dangit he tries with all his heart. It's a great thing to see.

Well this week was great. It really was. It was a test but it turned out to be amazing. One experience I'd like to share. We were tracting in a place called Whim. We ran into this Christian family, Tony, Baby, and Rihanna, their 8 year old daughter. We asked if we could come in and share a message. They listened, understood, and the spirit was so, so strong. We learned at Zone Conference to invite people to baptism when the spirit is in the room the strongest. This way, it makes it hard for them to deny what they feel and say no. After bearing my testimony about how the restored gospel has blessed me, the man started to cry. It was then when I knew they felt the Spirit. I invited them to follow Christ and be baptized. They all accepted and we're going to start working with them more this week. It was a great experience.

Our promising investigators we found the last two weeks fell through. I had to drop them. When they lie and lie about not drinking and not smoking, and then never keep the one commitment that really matters, coming to church, it's time to drop them. It's disheartening, but essential. It's especially hard to fill up your day with people to teach when you have to drop your investigators. We sill be focusing a lot on finding new ones.

Our new Zone leader, Elder Jones, was an assistant the past 3 transfers. He baptized 80 people in my area, so it's wierd to be with him. He is very strict, very serious, but a dang good missionary. It's going to be great to serve under him this next 5 weeks.

5 months!!!! I can't believe it's been 5 months. Just in a month and a half I'll be talkin to ya on the phone. I tell you what. It is always comforting to have Elder Prince out here with me. I love that kid. We call each other all the time and it's fun having him only just a 10 minute drive away. We've become pretty good friends.

My studies have gotten much better these past few weeks. President Gamiette showed us a new method to study. It's called the three column method. Left column is where you put the verses and a title for the line. Middle column is prophetic words used in the verses.
Right column is the meaning or principles learned. You do this every few verses or every main idea in the chapter. Then after you're done with the chapter you put the main idea, or what you learned at the bottom. Kind of a summary of principles taught. I'll send you a picture of what mine looks like next week. I have been learning a LOT. Even from the Ether chapters where it's just political insurrection and war.

I LOVE THIS WORK. My spirits are highter, my faith is growing, and my confidence, shall I say like the sons of Alma, is waxing strong. I can't believe all the tings I've learned. I haven't had too much success in the way of getting in the white clothes and baptizing lately but I've learned my lessons and success will come as I continue to learn and apply the things I learned.

I love you all,
Elder Morris

October 26, 2009

This past week was a good one, tough, but good. Our investigators fell through, which wasn't good, so we're back to square one. We went to Ayasammy's, and he was drinking rum with his friend, wasted. Not good at all. After 2 lessons on the word of wisdom he was doing well and quitting smoking but not everyone was ready to keep their commitments. He didn't come to church either. We taught with the spirit and testified but we'll see. I'll follow up on him this week. Our other investigators turned out to just like listening to us because we're white church men. We taught this family about how our church is the only church with the priesthood authority and God's true church. After they just said, "Well, all the churches are the same. It's one God. I have my church." The people don't understand!! It was tough. It happens so much in Rose Hall. I'm not saying the people are stupid they just don't understand us when we talk, don't comprehend church things, but they do comprehend Jesus died and God loves them. We should be having a lot of new investigators this week though so it's all good. I haven't baptized in a while. Actually, all of Berbice and Canje hasn't baptized much at all lately. The mission's numbers have plummeted. President Gamiette has raised the bar on baptisms. Only people that have a sincere testimony can get baptized.

Things are looking up though. We got transfer calls this last week. I'll be staying here in Rose Hall, with a local mini-missionary, Brother Narine. Elder Daines is going to St. Maarten to end his mission. Talk about lucky!! Sounds like an amazing place. Elder Duncan, our Zone leader is going to Tobago, an island off Trinidad. Things just keep changing. It'll be fun though. Next transfer will be a good one.

I don't really know what else to tell ya. Things are going fine here; it's just going to be a lot of hard work. Haha, it's not like missionary work is supposed to be easy.

Story time: Last night we slept over at the Zone leaders in New Amsterdam. They have A/C which is hard to find here, so yeah! It was nice. In the morning we went PIRHANA fishing. Haha! Never thought I'd ever do that. We got about 6. Pretty easy to catch. Put a line with a piece of fish on a hook and it'll just grab on and eat it. Haha. Pretty fun morning today. Haha.

Well, that's about it with me. I'm doing great. The Lord's there waiting to help me, so all I have to do is have the faith that He will. I am loving it here!

Elder Morris