Wednesday, 27 November 2013

25 Nov 2013, Distric Leader, Mdanstane South Africa

I'm glad they did a conference on member missionary work for stake conference. We just had a Missionary Fireside with our ward here yesterday. It was really nice. Hopefully it helps to start or ignite a fire for doing missionary work.

As for which day to do the Christmas/family/friends night it doesn't matter to me... Hopefully I get released Saturday morning... I want to be released before the family/friends night so that I can hug everyone!

Thanks for that quote mom! It's a good one. It makes you do a self introspection that's for sure!

Well from my side, I'm still doing great! I'm still in denial that I'm going home, and I definitely am not counting down the days... In fact I try to leave the amount of time I have left as shady as I can. Even when people tell me how many days I have left I put up a mental block and forget what they said moments later. I'm actually impressed with how well I'm able to mentally avoid the fact. It's not that I don't want to go home, but I want to stay focused till the end. So far so good!

Our area is on fire! We had 8 investigators at church. 6 of which have baptismal dates for next month. We have this incredible father led family we are working with that I think I told you about last time and the son came to church yesterday! They are doing so awesome and it seems like we get sucked into their home every visit and lessons go way over time because they are so interested and keep asking questions and want to know more! I love it!

  There are 4 other young men we are working with who are all friends and there is another young man we are teaching as well. We have a few other investigators we are working with and who keep us busy along with the 8 recent converts we need to see every week and the vast number of LA's we are trying to track down from the ward list. So we are busy buSY BUSY!! We honestly have too much to do for the time we get in the area.

 An Elder who I was with in the MTC who is serving in Uganda gets off his mission this Friday and he's from here. So he'll be flying to Cape Town and then hopefully flying to East London (Where I am now). If he flies here I'll get to meet up with him! That would be so sweet! I'm excited!

Well thanks for the emails! Thanks Aunt Terri for all you've done over the course of my mission! I wish I would have shown my appreciation more for all that you have done but know I love you and I'm grateful for your loving support of me!

Thanks for everyone else and everything you all do for me! I love you all so much! Time is flying by too fast! Take luck!


-Elder Jones

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

18 Nov 2013, District Leader, Mdanstane South Africa


Thanks a ton for the emails! I don't even know where to start! haha!

First off, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!! I don't even know what day it is though... but if you were to have spent that much money here on a meal that would be an insane meal!!! Here, if you spend over R50 ($5.00) on a meal at a restaurant, you are eating a nice meal! Most of the meals I get are usually around R30-R40. So to get a R800-R900 meal would be an incredible meal! You could probably feed 20 people with that!

 The transition from here to home is going to be so strange for me! I might just die from stinginess!

 Well just so you know I have had a really good week! There is too much work to do in our area and not enough time to do it... I honestly wish I could fit about 4-5 more appointments into the day! I would consider going on splits to accommodate all of the appointments, but Elder Warantino is still learning English and can't teach a full lesson in English yet... So we will stick together.

 We were supposed to be having 4 baptisms at the end of this month of 4 boys that we are teaching, but after a lesson with them yesterday, I don't think that these boys will be ready in time for the 30th... it might have to be pushed back another month... there is one boy though who is prepared, but for him to get baptized and not the other 3 might be a bad idea... so we are still figuring out what we will do... we'll see. The work here is great though! I like the ward a lot!

 It has been raining like crazy though! It makes it pretty fun because the drainage systems here are terrible, so the roads just get flooded, and it's very hilly here so some roads turn into rivers and everything! It's pretty fun to drive around in! I didn't take any pic’s though... my camera's battery is terrible and only lasts like a day, so It's always dead when I want to take pic’s. Haha!

 I don't really know what else to write! I'm working hard! I love the work! I love the gospel! I love growing and learning more and I'm still growing and learning each day! I'm getting to know the word "charity" more and more each day. Not only is it the Pure Love that Christ has for us, but it is also the Pure Love that we have for Christ. I love you all and I think you for your support of me! Take care!


-Elder Jones

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

11 Nov 2013, District Leader, Mdanstane South Africa

Hey Mom and Dad!

 So my time is running out faster than I thought... I was getting complacent with my emailing pace but I'll have to type a bit quicker! Thanks for the updates on everything. The sound of snow is ringing in my ears and I am rejoicing at the thought!

 That's a good idea about a fireside, and I even think that every year they usually hold a MTC thing where RM's and Full time Missionaries do a kind of MTC thing where for some hours they do workshops and classes and then give talks and they go out and visit people, then have a testimony meeting. Those sorts of things are awesome!

 As for investigators and our area, it's doing really well! It'll be picking up more I think over the next few weeks. We are now teaching a father led family! In fact there is a Father and 3 sons! Potential Priesthood home! Usually in South Africa you'll find a mother with a bunch of daughters. Actually that is really common, so what a blessing it is that we are teaching a father and his sons. Right now we are only teaching the father and one of his sons, but they are doing really great and said that they were going to come to church on Sunday! So I'm stoked about that!

My companion Elder Warantino and I are getting along great and I'm getting into shape with our morning exercises! He's a beast! I didn't realize how big of a boxer he really was. Like he is famous! He was undefeated for a long time at one point. He said that he was in the newspapers and on the television and everyone was scared to face him. He's sweet!

 Haha I showed another Elder the picture of dad's truck with 3 trailers and about dad he said, "He's Boss!" You wouldn't be able to drive that load around on these roads here! They are way too small for that many trailers. No room to turn. Well I need to go. We are washing our cars today and having a BBQ then going to a FHE tonight. I love you all! Take luck!

-Elder Jones

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

4th Nov 2013, Distric Leader, Mdanstane South Africa


 I like How the Christmas lights are up! I think that's a nice feature to add to the Halloween spirit!  275 kids, still isn't too bad... I like the decorations though, you did a good job! Even got the big pumpkin out too! It was too bad that I couldn't be there for Halloween. They don't celebrate Halloween here... probably for good reasons.

You wanted to know about my companion eh? He is from the Kiribati Islands, you might have to Google that... His English is decent right now. He's been out for 4.5 months now, so I'm getting him in the state where he understands most things I say, and he responds decently, but just needs a larger vocabulary and better pronunciations. So it's not too bad.

It's just kind of weird though because in lessons he isn't very comfortable teaching in English, so I find myself teaching pretty much all of the lessons, but it's ok. I'm working with him on that.

  I love him! He's so kind and loving and he serves me so much! He makes me food every day! Breakfast, lunch, and dinner he is cooking for me and making me big meals! I'll send you a pic of one meal. He said that in his culture, the men cook, not the women. I'm not complaining!

Also I'm exercising like a maniac every morning and Elder Warantino is my trainer. I'm going to be ripped! He is a professional boxer! He's been boxing since he was 8 yrs old! Also He loves to work hard and his last companion didn't like to work at all... so he's really happy to be with me so that we can both work really hard looking for those ready to hear the Gospel! I haven't been this happy and this full of the spirit in a long time, so I'm really enjoying myself!

 I made those pancakes from the mix you sent me for my birthday. That was glorious!!!! Especially the 100% pure maple syrup!!! SO AWESOME!!!

 I forgot what I was missing! Elder Warantino said he had never tasted something like that before! All they have for syrup here is corn syrup with different flavours... not so great... so the real maple syrup was really nice THANKS!

As for how my new area is doing right now... well the missionary I replaced was not that dedicated to the work, so the area needs a lot of work... so this week I have been going around meeting people and setting appointments and we are already pretty full. We are going to be focusing on working with members as much as possible to get the work just pumping here!  Also we have 4 young men we are teaching who should be ready for baptism at the end of this month, hopefully! So good things are happening!!!!!

Right now I am in a place where they speak predominantly Xhosa so I will try hard to learn it as best as I can so that when I come home I can share my testimony in that language.

 Haha! As for that missionary we picked up from the airport from Raymond, Kash Ellingson, his mom should know that there are predominantly 3 languages here that he will encounter... there are a lot more, but there are 3 main ones. Xhosa, Afrikaans, and English. Thankfully for the most part, everyone knows English... So he won't be fluent in any new language, but he will learn the greetings and basic things from a few languages.

 Well I'm having a hard time focusing in this email shop from all the noise around me so I’m sorry about this email being lame... I am doing great though and hopefully I'll be able to write a better letter next week. Thanks for all of the support!

 If there were any questions I didn't answer, just re-ask for next time...

  I love you all!

 -Elder Jones

26th Oct 2013, Assistant to the President, Cape Town, South Africa

Hi Mom and Dad,

We just got a phone call from president about 30 mins ago telling us that we are going to be getting elders coming in to our mission who were supposed to be going to the Kenya mission. Transfer day is on Wednesday and we are only finding out about these things today!
 I won't know all of the details until tomorrow night but there are some crazy things going on! I'm going to be super busy for the next few days! Then, relief...
My mission averages around 40-50 baptisms per month now-a-days. It used to be a lot lower but it has been picking up lately. We just had a baptism today. It went really well. I'll attach some photos! Love yah!

So some pretty crazy stuff is going on! We just got two new Elders who were supposed to be going to the Kenya Nairobi Mission, but some visa problems occurred so they have come to our mission.
  So yah turns out that one of the Elders coming to our mission is from Canada! Even better he's from Raymond!!! Elder Kash Ellingson is here! I was able to pick him up from the airport and I've been with him all day! It's been sweet! We've just been talking about Raymond a lot! It's pretty crazy!!! Anyways, here a picture!

-Elder Jones

24 Oct 2013, Assistant to the President, Cape Town, South Africa

Mom and Dad

Hey thanks for the update.

Things are going well here. Just did our last exchange with some zone leaders yesterday. Now we are just focusing on transfers.

Also, I don't think I told you, but we are going to be having a baptism this coming Sunday. It's the first baptism that the assistants have had in over 2 years in this mission.

President Wood has not seen his assistants have a baptism yet since he
has been here. So that's pretty cool. It's an eleven yr old girl. Her mother is an active member and she wasn't baptized because she didn't know English. But now she knows English very well and we've
taught her everything. She's been interviewed and she's getting

But I need to end this short for now.

I love you all!    

 -Elder Jones