Saturday, 31 December 2011

Happy New Year Dec 31 still MTC Johannesberg

Hey! Happy New Year! Well I will definitely work on that quote some more! ( Adrian’s mom put a puzzle together using the scriptures) I just can't see why the word worms or the word excel would be in a quote... there are 17 words in it right? I just don't know if there has been some mistake somewhere... maybe I am just dumb haha! I'll keep working on it! Also my card doesn't work at stores... it only works at the ATM... So I will definitely take more out from now on and just keep it in my apartment if I ever need it. We get mission cards for our food and everything so I’ll try to use my money as little as possible.

 I'm so proud of Tristan! What a good kid!

And that is a huge looking elk!!! I don't know much about elk but that looks like a biggin! Good work Riley!  I love hearing about home! I've written a few letters now so you should be getting some soonish?

 I leave the MTC Tuesday early in the morning so I am in the field in 3 days! CRAZY! I'm super excited though! My P-day isn't till the Monday... so I can't email you until the Monday after I get into the field... Sorry... but I will definitely send some pictures with my emails! I have lame pictures though... haha!

The MTC has been great and I have learned so much but I am done with it! I can't wait to get out of here! We call it "Spirit Prison" and that is definitely the name that describes it! Just being stuck in here is killing me! I want to get out and experience Africa! The people are pretty sweet but I cannot pronounce anybody's names for the life of me! I am definitely going to struggle with that! The teaching has been going very well as of so far! Turns out that "real investigator" I talked about in the last email was just the ward mission leader and he was acting very well because he had me convinced! But being here at the MTC is actually pretty tough... I have had some tough times but I just keep my faith in Heavenly Father and he pulls me through every time!

 I really really miss snowboarding!!! It's killing me! Elder DeWitt (He's from Utah) talk about snowboarding all the time and it is killing me! I wish I could have gone once before I left... haha! Oh well I guess two years of missionary work is more important... But really it is so that helps me keep snowboarding off my mind! I just really hope Matt J. is snowboarding! Keep me proud Matt! So Marshall is in Calgary eh? Well I am sending him a letter today so he should have it in a few weeks...

Have I ever mentioned how amazing the weather is here?! It just doesn't stop amazing me! Also we had a health meeting this week, and I am so lucky to be going to Cape Town! All the elders in Kenya have to deal with crazy skin eating worms and maggots that bury into their skin and larvae on their laundry and malaria and everything like that! Whereas me in Cape Town, they said that Malaria isn't anywhere! They said South Africa is a malaria safe zone so I don't have to take those pills thank goodness! If I were going to any other mission in Africa I would have to take those pills! But if I go to Namibia I have to take them... I hate how I only have half an hour to read and type my emails but I will have an hour in the field so my next email will be better! I love you all! I really love the support from everybody! Let me know when Anona pops!

By the way the church is true! Just in case you were wondering! I'm so happy I’m on a mission and I couldn't have been blessed more than I have been! Oh and I am a professional ping pong player so when I get home I challenge anyone to a game of ping pong! I will PWN you all!!!! and I still want to face Kim in Fooseball! Till next time!
-Elder Jones
(P.S. I get real name tags today! So I don't have to be in the field with this terrible, taped together, name tag! WOOT!!!)

Sunday, 25 December 2011


MTC Missionaries on Christmas morning. Elder Jones right side back row.

I love you Oma and Opa! I'm sorry I cant respond to everyone cause I have such little time to write! But I will continue with just saying everything I can as fast as i can.

I love the Christmas package!!! It was amazing! Couldn’t have asked for a better gift really! It wasn’t hard to open the gifts after reading the scripture and writing down the word, but figuring out that riddle is killing me! I even asked other Elders if they could figure it out and nobody can! So I guess I made a mistake... I will have to get all the wrappings out of the garbage and try to figure it out again! I'll get it!

 By the way I had an amazing Christmas! After the gift and reading all the letters from home that were in them, I was feeling great! Then to make things better there was sacrament meeting at 10 and Elder Cook (The general authority who spoke last general conference with the talk called 'Look Up') was here with us! It was awesome! I shook his hand like ten times and he spoke to us and he wrote a little message in the back of my hymnbook that Grandma and Grandpa gave me! So awesome!

 I also spoke in sacrament meeting... I was given the topic "Christ’s arrival and ministry in the America's" and it went really well! I cried as usual.... can't help it... but I shared about Moroni's Quest and how I was able to experience the savior coming and being able to touch him and how real it was and I also told the story of dads mission about how him and his companion were glowing. It went really well. I sang in a quartet and we sang angels we have heard on high and it went really well... we actually got Elder and Sister Cook to cry so that was a bonus!

Then we had a big Christmas lunch with turkey and ham and mashed potatoes and everything! and i ate and spoke with Elder and Sister Cook the whole time! It was awesome! Such nice people! I really, really like it here! I always feel the spirit! I’m spoiled! Last night our MTC mission president and his wife gave us all stockings full of stuff! It was amazing!

This Christmas was great! Although I would have totally pummeled Kim in the foosball tournament! I miss you guys! I love you! I’m not home sick but I love seeing pictures and hearing about everything! It makes my day! I'm here serving the very person you and everyone at home are celebrating today! So even by celebrating Christmas you are supporting me! I have taken pictures and you will get them once I enter the field because I’m not allowed to email pictures here in the MTC for some reason... probably because it takes too long...

… mom I also noticed that everything in my gift was green! Nice choice! ha-ha! I was so confused! Half this stuff I’m probably going to get rid of... sorry but I’m pretty sure my bags are way over weight but I’m really happy you gave me that mini book of Mormon! It was well needed! I hope all of you have an amazing Christmas!

Africa is amazing so far! Every house has a tall fence with spikes onto or an electric fence... so that’s kind of scary! But that’s alright! I’m going to Cape Town anyways and I’ve been told that that is much better than Johannesburg! I love you all! Thanks for the support! Also I sent a letter with multiple letters in it... so mom can you give them to the people I say to... and also I was going to write Marshall but I didn’t have time and I wanted to write a longer one... so Marshall will haft a wait a bit longer for his letter... if you can try to get Marshall’s address for me so that I don’t need to have you always giving letters to my friends!


Thanks so much mom! Merry Christmas everyone!

-Elder Jones

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Post: Sat Dec 24th Elder Jones is still in the MTC in Johannesburg

I love hearing from everyone! It's amazing! Since I only have half an hour to read all the emails and then reply, I don't have enough time to reply to everything... I'm sorry... I really wish I could.. it kind of sucks... but I can't call home on Christmas... Its MTC rules... I wish I could... but I will be able to on mother’s day! I Love you guys! Tell Aaron that he is crazy!

 I'm grateful for the emails from anona and oma! Thanks so much! Made me smile! It's really nice to hear from home! I'm glad work is going well... I'm really excited to open my Christmas package you put in my suite case!! It's been hard not to! Everyone else opened their packages on the plane flight here and I’m the only one who has actually waited till Christmas! I'm glad I did though!

I'm sending you guys letters and I’m sorry if they don't have a reply to everything you just emailed me... I only have time to write them just before I come in to read my emails... it’s kind of set up poopily but that’s alright... and I can’t send pictures till I’m in the field... so patience on that! I was happy to see the picture Dad sent me of the family though! Made me smile! I don’t really have much time to write many people after I am done reading everything that people have sent to me...

So much has happened this week that I won’t be able to go through everything! The learning and teaching never changes but we were able to go to the Johannesburg Temple on Tuesday! It was so Awesome! It is a smaller temple so it was a different experience, but there were 7 Elders taking their own endowments out! It was an awesome experience! I bought a Zebra skin scripture case from the distribution center, and a mini book of Mormon made out of giraffe skin and giraffe hide! It's sweet! And all legit and real! I won't use them but I’ll just keep them in my suitcase till I come home! I'm excited haha! So the temple was awesome! I got some pictures so you'll get some of those up in a couple weeks!

I love it here at the MTC! I know I have said that before but I love it even more this week! My ping pong skills are sky rocketing! and my Teaching skills are too! I was actually able to teach a real investigator last night! It was scary but incredible! We have a thing every Friday called "TRC" I have no idea what it stands for but it is where we teach someone who we have never seen before! Usually it is just one of the teachers pretending to be an investigator. But for TRC on Fridays it is either a member acting like they are an investigator, or it is a legit investigator! Turns out Elder Kwapeng and I got a legit investigator! So we greeted him and got to know him a bit and were asking him questions and he was a happy guy, older, from the states, just working here, and his brother is a Bishop in our church, and the only reason he came to the missionaries was because his brother asked him if he would do that for his Christmas gift! so he did... and he wanted to know what it was about our church that we loved so much and what it was that we had such a strong desire to serve for 2 years! and he wanted to know what it was about our church that was different than the other churches! So we very boldly brought out the book of Mormon and testified of it and how it would help and bless him and how it was what made our church different from the other churches and so he said he would read it and pray about it to know if it was true!!! ahhh! so awesome!

 I know this is where I am supposed to be and I love it here so much! I wish I had more time but I don’t! I don’t know what dad should do with my car but I haft a go! I love all of you! Be safe!
-Elder Jones

Saturday, 17 December 2011

17th Dec 2011 Johannesburg (in the MTC)

Thank you so much oma and opa! I loved the email! 

I get to write you guys every Saturday until I enter the field and then it is every Monday I do believe. Also I get to email you on Christmas, which is a Sunday, so you get an email from me two days in a row! So please email me for both of those days!

My time here at the MTC has been incredible so far! I'm loving it! It is like a utopia! Everybody are friends with each other! Nobody speaks down to anyone! Only uplifting things! And funny things! I love it! I feel the spirit all day every day! I love how I can focus on studying and learning and growing and praying all day every day! Without any distractions! It's such a testimony builder and I've grown so much in only the two days I have been here! I love the people here too! These guys are the best! The Africans are awesome! So happy and funny all the time! They have awesome testimonies! They can be somewhat hard to understand sometimes and sometimes they just start speaking other languages but I don’t mind! So far so good! 

My companion is Elder Kwapeng (qua-peng)! He is awesome! I and he get along so well! It’s just me and him in a room and everyone else is in rooms of 4! Also we have a shower in our rooms for each of us and our laundry machines in our room as well! It’s amazing! Everyone else has to go and shower and wash their clothes in a public bathroom downstairs! Ha-ha! But Elder Kwapeng is awesome! He is African, from Johannesburg, is serving in Uganda, and is really funny! He can speak 5 different languages! But he is also very reserved and chill! I like it! And I learn lots from him!

So the weather here is pretty much the best thing ever!!! +27 during the day! Sunny! No wind! No bugs! How can it get better! Although I find myself always taking cold showers... ha-ha! I went running with Elder Kwapeng this morning and I was dead after 5mins! And he ran twice as far as I did! I am so out of shape!

I get to teach an "investigator" tonight! ahhh! It’s just practice so it’s not a real investigator but still! It is going to seem real and I want to do well! Although I know I am going to mess up... but me and Elder Kwapeng and going to try our best! 

Oh yeah! So the MTC, the chapel, the mission home, and the institute building are all within our little compound. Our little compound is surrounded by an 8 foot wall and enclosed with gates that are very pointy on top! Not to mention we have 24/7 security guards at the entrance... not scary at all! I think it is just so people don’t come to steal from us because our buildings are so nice. I'm so excited to get out into Cape Town though! The MTC really is amazing! 

There are like 20 or so missionaries here at the MTC and we are so comfortable with each other and we all share what we are thinking during classes and we all help each other grow and learn! Of course people are still immature. lol! What do you expect when they are all 19 eh? That’s alright though! 

My MTC mission president acts and looks so much like President Monson! It's kind of funny actually! He's pretty cool! So I actually don’t have any name tags... I was supposed to get my name tags in the mail but I didn’t and everyone else here did... The person that makes the name tags is on holidays and won’t be back till after I leave so I won't get any tags till I’m in the field! AHH! So right now I just have this makeshift name tag held together by tape! Ya I'm jealous of everyone else! I haven't really taken many pictures... My apologies... I have taken some though! Only like 10 or so haha! And I got one with Elder Kwapeng! I'll send pictures soon. So I had more things to say before I started typing this email out. I'll let you know next time! 

I love it out here! I really do! I miss you guys too but I've accepted that I won’t be back for two years so just get used to that idea. I have also gotten used to the idea of not seeing any snow for two years. It wasn't hard once I experienced this incredible weather! I just want to shout out to all my friends! I love you guys! Thanks for all your love and support! I needed it!

You guys are amazing and I highly suggest a mission for everyone! I hope I don't sound too much like a missionary... I’m definitely going to miss boggle! That’s alright though! Maybe Holly will be able to beat me when I come back! But I’ll just win with all the Afrikaans words I’ll know! ha-ha. I want to hear from Marshall! Is he moved to Calgary yet? It has only been 2 days I know... sorry! But keep me updated on these things! Alright well I haft a go. 

I love this gospel! It really is true! I know it with all my heart! I feel it every day! I am so grateful to be here serving a mission! I love you all! 

-Elder Jones

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Letter from Elder Jones, arrived at the Johannesburg MTC safely!

I made it! CRAZY! The travel went well. No problems and i managed to navigate my way through all the airports and terminals properly. I was all alone for the first 12-13 hours. I felt rather lonely but low and behold in the biggest airport in the world, when i went to sit down and study my scriptures, i looked to my right and saw a young man reading his set of scriptures! Man i was so excited to see that! I ran up and said, "Elder?" turns out it was Elder Schnieder! He is from Idaho Falls and is serving in Kenya! We were on the same flight to the MTC! he had been waiting around in the airport for 11 hours already and i had been there for 6.5 hours! Filled with new found hope we were off searching for more lost Elders! Tuns out we were the lost ones because during our scan of the terminal we spotted 6 elders in a group walking around! That was a nice site! We quickly joined the crew and greeted everybody! Elder Cook, Elder Jensen, Elder Lewis, Elder Brown, Elder Tukuafu, and Elder Dewitt were all from parts of the states and Elder Tukuafu is half Tongan! pretty sweet! We then found some food and waited around for our flight. On the flight i sat beside a South African from Johannesburg who worked in London. Pretty cool! He was of some kind of Christian Faith, i couldn't understand the name he told me, but i ended up sharing a very rough, very brief version of the first lesson, which i don't think he took to fondly too, but he had the attitude that "I'll believe in my thing, and you believe in yours." so I don't think i did very much but i t was worth a shot. He was really nice though!
After a very long, 10.5 hour, flight, we finally arrived in the hot, sunny land of South Africa! What a relief! No more airplanes! for a few weeks at least... no problems with customs so we grabbed our luggage and were on our way! We were promtly greeted at the entrance to the airport and taken, with 3 other elders, from various places in Africa (I appologize for my lack of specifics), who were already there, and packed our stuff in a van! Off we went through the city of Johannesburg, which is a metroplois of cities with a total population of about 8 million. 40 minutes later we arrived at the MTC and realized how small it is! Its awesome! I already know every elder in the whole place! 2 other elders on coming with me to Cape Town! The rest are serving in Kenya! It still hasn't really hit me that im here yet! I hope i adjust to missionary life quickly. When we got here we had to fill out some papers, have an interview, see the nurse and get a shot, and eat some food! I have yet to shower since tuesday morning, and i have only brushed my teeth once since! but i figured writing an email to my family was a bit more important. Well i am here! Safe and Sound!
The traffic is crazy here and there are people begging and selling stuff at every corner and robot (robot is what they call traffic lights). It is going to take a bit to get used to thats for sure! I also need to get used to the fact that all the African people speak quietly... Maybe i'm just deaf but i sure wish they would speak up a little :) I think i am going to like it here! It's exciting! It's hot! It's +27 degrees and this is a moderate day! I'm sweating and i am in an air conditioned building! but i like it so far! I feel very unprepared and rather overwhelmed but i think that will pass in a few months. There is 80% poverty here and the cost of living is high. There are taxes on everything! so the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.. corruption coats the land! Looks like I'm needed here for sure!
I'm still coming to grips with the fact that I won't be home for two years, but the Elders are great and the atmosphere is somewhat fun, so hopefully that keeps my mind off home. It's good to finally be here though! Oh ya! mom! you were right about the leaving the baggage un attended in Heathrow! There was an announcement like every 5 minutes that said, "Any unattended baggage will be promptly removed and destroyed!" Pretty much the funniest thing i've heard an english woman say over and over again! Too good! well my time is up! I love you all! I'm safe! I'm happy! Man i still can't believe im in South Africa right now! so crazy! How is the family coping? Are you ok mom? Anyone jumping for joy that im finally gone? I know i am! No cold! Woo!
Take care everybody! I love you so much! I'll send pictures whenever i find out how to! Till next time!
-Elder Jones

See you in Two years. Do your best!!

There he goes to the security doors. We Love you!!

 Calgary airport at 5:30pm with the last few minutes before the BIG good-bye

Monday, 12 December 2011

I'm An Elder Now!

So turns out I am a missionary now! I'm so excited and I can't wait to actually step out of the airport, after the torturously long trip, into the wonderful country of South Africa! WOOT!! I'm past being nervous I'm just excited now! Here are some pictures of me moments after being set apart!

I'm leaving on a jet plane.......

This is it! It is actually happening! I am actually heading to South Africa! CRAZY! My emails will be posted up on this Blog for you all to read and hopefully enjoy! I know I am totally copying everything Elder Palmer has done but what can I say? They are awesome ideas! So good bye to everyone! I love you all and I'll do my best!

 Cape Town South Africa! I can't wait!
 Just missing the name badge.
I'll be back carving it up in no time! I'm going to miss snowboarding...

My Address is:

Elder Adrian Glenn Jones
South Africa Cape Town Mission
PO Box 181
Observatory 7935
Cape Town, South Africa