You've gotta love Africa

You've gotta love Africa
Elder Chambers and Elder Kivaya in Oda

Going to Save the World

Going to Save the World
Elder Donovan Chambers

Monday, November 30, 2009

30 November 2009

Hey everyone! It was great to read your emails today. I'll do my best to answer all those questions you guys had. First of all sorry I didn't get to email you guys last week. We didn't get a chance to come to the cafe because we went to the market in Medina and then spent the day preparing food for the week. Ok before I forget I need you to talk to the orthodontist and ask him some questions for me. See there is no dairy food group here in Ghana so to get calcium the people here just eat the whole chicken. Well not the feathers, but the bones, cartilage, and everything else. So while I was eating some bones I broke the cement for my permanent retainer on the right side. So what I'd like to know are my teeth going to go all crooked again? Should I break the other side off and just take it out? Right now it's sitting in the exact position it was cemented and you can only tell it's not connected when I move it. Should I try to get it repaired at the dentist? So if you could just consult some orthodontist and let me know what they say that'd be great. So let me start with two weeks ago. Wednesday was the big day of the week. That evening we had baptisms! It was really cool. We had a recent convert who baptized his wife and nephew as well as the wife and son of another member. Unfortunately one of the people we were expecting, Seth Boateng, didn't show up despite us seeing him a half hour before. This was the second baptism he's skipped. He's facing a lot of strife from his boss (who we're pretty sure he also lives with) for investigating the church. He has a testimony though so we haven't given up on him and hopefully he'll be able to join the church someday. Anyway the rest of Wednesday was also pretty exciting. While we were out teaching a big rainstorm came in and our area got a bit flooded. Our apartments are pretty far away and uphill from our area so we struck out to get back for the baptism. The roads were literally rivers. We worked our way along but then we kind of found ourselves stuck and the water was rising as it ran downhill. So our best chance was to take off our shoes and roll up our pants. One of the locals led us through the flood along a path that avoided the biggest potholes. I only slipped and fell once! I heard that though it is the beginning of the dry season you still get a few big rainstorms to get ready for Hammatan. Don't worry I have been taking pictures of the flood and other things, but I'm not sure exactly when I'll be able to put them online. This cafe you can't really do it in. This week and last it's been a bit of a struggle for us to actually find our investigators at home to teach them. For one thing we spent two days in traffic going back and forth to Accra so Elder Ewudzie could get a root canal and fix his tooth ache. The investigators we were able to teach the lessons went really nice. This next week we are going to really follow up with our investigators because a few of the ones we have been teaching for awhile have stopped progressing. We need to see if they are serious or not so that we can know if we should drop them and find people who are more ready. It's kind of sad for me that we have to drop investigators who aren't serious, but there are probably 200,000 people in our area and our missions are only two years. So I got the Christmas present I think the 18th? The APs brought it to leadership training (Elder Ewudzie's our district leader). It was really awesome. I also got some letters from Dear Elder. For some reason the Dear Elder letters sent to the Ghana MTC I just got a few days ago so that was a little confusing. And mom I did get the email you sent today, so don't worry it worked fine. Also just to let you know I'm trying to write different things in emails from what I write in the letters. The letters are going to be like the small plates of Nephi. It's been great hearing from you, but I'm sorry you had all those funerals. I thought it was a little strange when Mom told me Aunt Violet died since I thought I'd already been to her funeral, but I guess it was Aunt Ethyl. I don't really need anything so that's why I haven't used my debit card, but if you do want to send something, Mom, I loved those chewy sweet tarts. Since it was Thanksgiving this last week I guess I'll mention a bit about the food here. First of all I'm pretty sure I'll be about 400 pounds when I get home because each night I eat like a mountain of rice. On the actual thanksgiving this was my dinner: rice with groundnut soup, mangos, sugarcane, sachet of water, and alvarro. I love alvarro, it's this pineapple malt soda that's delicious. It's kind of expensive though at like 80 pesewas. Also on Saturday I got to have "real" FuFu for the first time. An investigator, Sis. Comfort, invited us over for lunch, and I got to help pound the Fufu. Fufu is just plantains and either cassava or yams pounded into a doughy ball. We ate it with groundnut soup. I think after clam chowder groundnut (peanut) soup is my new favorite soup. Love you guys lots, and I have more to tell you, but our time is almost up. Pray that I'll get sick of eating rice, and let everyone know that I'm glad for their support. Love, Elder Chambers

10 November 2009

Pres. and Sister Smith And Elder Bradford Chambers as Bradford entered the Ghana Accra mission.

Monday, November 16, 2009

16 November 2009

Hey guys, this is my very first p-day of the mission. So far the mission has been awesome. This is about my fifth or sixth day out in the field. I'm not sure if you would have gotten any of my letters yet or not. When you do get them I was wondering if you could put all the letters from me into a shoebox or something for me. The letters I write to the mission president, my journal, and those letters home are apparently what will make up the record of my mission. Anyway you can read about the MTC from those letters so I won't really go into it here. It sufficeth me to say that it was great and I learned a ton. Out in the field--. Well Ghana sure isn't like home, but aside from everything being different the hardest changes have been hand washing and riding a bike all the time. This morning we did all of our laundry and my hands are scrubbed raw. My companion, Elder Ewudzie, and I are in a brand new area. Our branch/area is called New Legon and is only about a month and a half old. Last transfer Elder Ewudzie and Elder Darkon opened up the area, so that makes me the third missionary to the area. Also in our apartment are the zone leaders for the Adenta zone. Yesterday was stake conference so I still haven't met most of the members of our branch yet. We did meet the Branch President the other day though. He purifies water for satchels so our apartment gets all our pure water from him. Satchels are these bags of purified water that everyone sells. They are a half liter and only 5 pesewas. Which is good because our area is especially hot and dusty. The last few days we have been focusing on the investigators that are preparing to be baptized this Wednesday, and on finding investigators that we can progress to be baptized in a few weeks. If everything goes as planned we should have 5 baptisms this week. It's been really exciting working with so many people willing to hear the gospel. On Thursday Elder Ewudzie had me teach a lesson totally without his help. It turns out they were members, which was relieving to me because they didn't understand a word I said because of my accent. We aren't actually sure of our area boundaries but there are a ton of people in it, and probably as many chickens. Today we rode a tro-tro to the Madena market so we could buy some food to make stew to eat for this week. It was pretty awesome, and I can't wait to try it. I'm pretty sure the little tiny red peppers we put in it are way, way hot. As if I wasn't sweating enough already. Anyway I don't think I could ever get tired of eating rice so I should be good foodwise for the next two years. Missionary work is hard work, but so far I'm loving teaching the gospel to people. Love, Elder Bradford Chambers

Sunday, November 15, 2009

4 November 2009

(This letter and the one from Oct. 29th both arrived on Thursday Nov.12) Dear Family, I hope that all of you are doing really well. Here at the MTC we have been very busy all of the time. I've done a lot of personal study and wish I had time to do more. The teachers and classes have been great to learn about how to be the absolute most effective teacher you can be. We practice all of the time adjusting what we teach to meet the different investigators needs, concerns, interests, rate of learning, etc. Preach My Gosple is such a great resource. It is really easy for you to be able to teach whatever the Spirit directs rather than just teaching a memorized discussion. I wish I'd studdied it a lot more before coming. It is truly going to revolutionize the number of convert the church gets. Another thing I wished I'd done before coming is kept a journal. It's been great to put may doings, my thoughts, impressions, etc. into writing each night. There is something to be said for putting a thing into your own handwriting. It really crystallizes your thoughts and gives you new insights. I can tell I'm going to treasure my journals immenseky. I'd encourage all of you to start keeping them. I know you;ll love it. Let me know how everyone's doing, love you lots. Love, Elder Bradford Chambers

29 October 2009

Dear Family, How are you all doing? I am having a great time here at the MTC. We are being taught and learning so much. I can't wait to get out into the field and begin teaching. My companion and I have been working on a lesson that we are teaching tomorrow. We are going to teach about prophets and then mopve onto Joseph Smith. We'll be teaching the MTC manager and then the MTC President as they pretend to be the Mackey Family. Today we got to go to the Accra Temple. It is right on the main road in Accra. Inside it has the same basic floor plan as the Columbus Temple, but it is decoratedvery differently. There are vaulted ceilings and dark red room everywhere. There is a beautiful mural of an Afican forest too. On Sunday we watched some of general conference. It was really good to see again. Some of the talks seemed more powerful/important to me now then they did the forst time we watched them. For the most of each day we are studying and learning constantly. It should really pay off as we enter enter the field. I really like Alma 17:2-3. I hope that when all of us at the MTC enter the field that we will be able to teach with power and authority of God. I love all of you guys. Happ birthday Patrick!! Love, Elder Chambers