Friday, October 24, 2014

Oct 20 Part of 88,000

So I've been on mission for 2 months now! Pretty awesome! and what a crazy experience it has been so far, I’m excited to see what the next 22 holds for me! haha

Alright so we had Zone Meeting on Tuesday where we talked about how to get people to actually attend church. We all decided that if they really do gain a testimony from the Holy Ghost that what we share with them is true, then they will come.  For us in Zingwangwa, it is pretty hard to explain where the church is to people so I thought maybe that would be scaring them off but nope I have seen that those people who really do pray and get that answer that these things are true, they come.  One girl got lost this last week and called us and we went looking for her haha. and then we have another young man, Louis, who sacrifices some of his class time at college to come to sacrament meeting! That's because this Church really is the true church. For those of you not of my faith, I invite you to attend The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on an upcoming Sunday and see! (If you take me up on this invite email me I want to hear about it!) So yep that meeting was great and also transfers were this week so Elder Barton, a missionary who has been in the same area for 13 months, finally got transferred so everyone was saying goodbye to him at the ZM.

Wednesday was Mother’s Day here in Malawi! Everyone was off from school and work so there was an excitement about the town! It was great going and visiting different amayis (mothers) and sharing messages about how great mothers are! We visited a recent convert family, the Ambalis,, who the mother is a widow and just amazing. She is my amayi (mom) right now on mission. She makes us great food and so we baked her banana muffins for Mother’s day! Her daughter, Patience is the cutest kid in Malawi too. When she first met me she was terrified. Never seen someone so scared to see an Azungu, but she’s grown to love me so much and even said she wants to move to America because she only likes white people haha.  Also here in Malawi (and all of Africa I think) they wear titenjis, which are just fabric you wrap around your waist like a towel and it acts as a skirt and all the women wear them and they made special Mother’s Day I bought one and just wait until I can send the picture of it would see them alll over and it was really funny to me.

Previewing General Conference in our apartment.
We got to see General Conference this weekend! They send DVDs of it to the district and branches here. So on Saturday we all met at the nice district building and watched both sessions. SO good. and many investigators came! It was great sitting in a real church building for once haha! and then on Sunday we watched both sessions back to back in church. Of course though since this is Africa we had technical difficulties and sat there for an hour waiting for them to go get a new DVD player haha...but we all sang hymns and such so it's fine! 

Conference was amazing watching it with a missionary badge on. Especially when they spoke of the EIGHTY EIGHT THOUSAND missionaries I am a part of!  (See Elder Bednar's talk below.) It's amazing that the work of the Lord is being carried out to the whole world by so many people.  That's a testament in itself of the truth of this could 88,000 young people be so willing to give 2 years to the Lord if they didn't know these things are true. I could never survive here and work as hard as I do if I was just doing it because my parents want me to or something. I know this Church is the same church Jesus Christ established when He was on earth and I’m grateful for the privilege to share that truth with the Malawians! Of course, many of our investigators had left by the end of 2nd session. 4 hours is a long time to sit I understand, but then Elder Bednar got up and shared such a powerful message!  The talk was titled “Come and See”.   (In this talk he answers the question "“Why are Latter-day Saints so eager to tell me about what they believe and to invite me to learn about their church?”).

It was also really powerful when Elder Holland spoke on poverty  "Are we not all Beggars" and I was sitting with all the Malawian members who know first hand what he was speaking about.. I'm so grateful for modern day revelation and leaders who guide us in these Latter-days! I know that the church is led by a living prophet and apostles today!

Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers! They helped make this week great and gave me strength to keep going!
Happy Mothers Day to my amazing Amayi!
Love you all!

Elder Grant Alan Hiltbrand