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Monday, April 27, 2015

April 27, 2015

Elder Truscott, Elder Kupka, Elder Pahulu, Elder Prisbrey, Elder Fonua and Elder Mendenhall
"The Panorama District"

Pahulu, Elder Truscott, the random asian lady that jumped in the pic, Prisbrey, and Ryno
The top of Signal Hill
Well I will get right into telling you about my week.
It was an alright week for me I guess. The work went great but I just felt eh. Transfer news came out Saturday so I was waiting for that (Elder Prisbrey and I are staying together, in fact our whole district is staying together).
We cancelled all our exchanges this week because Elder Prisbrey and I wanted to hit the 5-5-5 (the mission goal) together since it was possibly our last full week together. So we just went out and worked worked worked!
It was really good though in terms of work, cause we hit the 5-5-5 and people started progressing and it was just a great week in terms of work.
I guess the highlights of the week are the people that started progressing. We met this guy named Billy last Sunday, and we ended up seeing him twice this week and teaching him. He's super cool, 31 from Zimbabwe and smart. The second time we were there he was explaining the difference between the Aaronic and Melchezidek Priesthoods from the pamphlet that he read! So he is cool, and we are really excited to keep teaching him and seeing how he will progress!
Another family that just started progressing this week is the Pienaar family. We went there on Wednesday with the intention of kind of dropping them, we just wanted to explain our purpose and we thought that would make them see they didn’t want to sit with us. Well we got there, started talking, and the dad asks "so who is Joseph Smith?". The mom goes and grabs the pamphlet, and comes back with it opened to the page of the Restoration, and then reads it to him. He asked questions throughout, and we answered, and then committed them to baptism. They said they would have to think about being baptized again, but fully understand that if it’s true, then they need to be. It was a pretty cool lesson.
Patricia is doing really well too. She is the wife of a member, named Tony. We've been teaching her, and she will be baptized next month! She is really smart, and its easy cause she wants to be a member and she's praying and feeling good about the things that we teach. Phew, another girl that is progressing is a girl named Sam. We met her at a recent converts home, and at the end of our lesson she was like "how do I join the church?"...so we made a time and have been teaching her.
Like I said, this week was pretty much summed up in teaching and teaching and teaching.....from week 1, when we taught 4 lessons the whole week....to week 6, when we just taught 26....Bellville is looking up.
Oh, and on Sunday we had a miracle ;) We didn’t have time to eat lunch after church, cause we had an appt and no time to cook, so we just decided to go to our appt...and it dropped. We just said we'd work and forget about lunch cause it was too hard with the schedule we had. Well we went finding around this area called Brackenfell, and we were getting hard core rejected....and then we passed this  apartment building. Prisbrey was like "We should go in there" and I said ok, and right then a car drove in, and we followed it through the gate....well we ended up finding and teaching a couple lessons in there, and then on our way out I was like "let’s go to that end room" cause the door was open and I knew the lady had seen us walk up the stairs. Well we walk up to the door, knock, and its 2 couples who live there. They invited us right in, and were like "do you like pork?" and fed us pork sandwiches! It was awesome! As we ate, we chatted, and they were asking questions like why are there so many churches when there is only one God....and we taught the restoration, and have a return apt and it was a really good time in that apartment complex! haha. So our miracle is that we found and taught 3 lessons in there, got fed, and got return appts. with 2 of them :) It was cool!
I hope this is another good transfer here in Bellville. I'm sure it will be. I'm glad that I'm staying. Hopefully the people can keep progressing and we can keep working hard so they will!

Monday, April 20, 2015

April 20, 2015

The Mehana family with Elder Truscott

Elders having a car wash and Braai (BBQ)  for P-Day
Well where do I start with this week in Bellville....
Tuesday I was on exchanges with Elder Fonua. It was a super great day! I was in Panorama again, cause he's Kupka's companion. We had set the goal to teach 8 lessons that day, so we got straight to work! We did some street contacting and taught a few lessons that way, and our last lesson before lunch was really cool. We wanted 2 lessons before lunch, so we were deciding where to go, we chose a street to go down, and there was a dude named Shane there. He was a security guard and was working, but he called us and was like "are you Jehova's Witness or Book of Mormon?" and we were like, we teach about the Book of Mormon. He said he wanted a copy so we ran back to the car, grabbed one, and taught him about it. He told us missionaries had once visited him, but then he started asking strange questions, like "how does God speak to us today?" and so we explained the spirit and prophets, and explained how the spirit feels. He asked "what if there are voices and they aren’t making me feel like that?" And so I was kind of getting like what the heck man....so I was like "well do you have a problem with voices?" and he told us no...but his 10 year old son has voices telling him to kill people and won’t leave him, say that they've chosen him....so it’s pretty crazy! I want to help him.But we ended up teaching all 8 lessons to meet our goal, and we had a super great day! Elder Fonua was really happy about it, and Iwas pretty pumped as well. Panorama is a sweet area!
Wednesday I was on exchanges with Elder Mmotong. He's an Elder from Pretoria SA, and is working in Table View right now. He came with me to Bellville, and we again had the goal to teach teach teach. We wanted to teach 7 lessons that day, so we prayed, and of course we got the goal. It was a great day as well. Back to back exchanges make you kinda tired though if you are going hard both days. haha.
People have been dropping us like flies this week....it was no good. We had a super sweet dude named Thabang who was really promising! Super smart, and he did some research this week on the church and stuff, and when we showed up for our appt, he was like, "I don’t think the Mormon is for me." and we persuaded him to sit down and talk about it....turns out as he googled Mormon it auto completed it and said that mormonism is a cult. He read that and was turned off. shocker. Totally sucks. A bit of false doctrine and confusion and he wasn’t wanting to sit with us at all. It sucks. We told him to go to mormon.org though and research there from the source, and then to ask God....and when he does he'll come back to us. He said he would....we have faith. haha. Also an older family that we met on my  birthday dropped us. Sent an SMS that said he was cancelling this Wednesday and wouldn’t change churches. I called him, he said there was nothing wrong with us or the message, but he's been a  member of his church for 40 years and it’s not worth it to change now....flip. I told him to continue reading the Book of Mormon, he said it was his intention, so we just left it at that. hopefully he reads and feels something. We've been finding like crazy, and are teaching lots, just hoping and praying for some progressing people!
One cool thing though. The Mehana family, from gugs, moved to Bellville....so they are in the ward now and Iget to see them! It’s super awesome! They had us over on Sunday and we are teaching and seeing them again! It was super awesome!! It was a great week for the zone though! We are trying to get to the 5-5-5 as the zone. And this week we were pretty dang close!! We hit it as Bellville, which is awesome cause the area is picking up big time, and the zone is following! We are hoping for another good week here. It’s the last week of the transfer, so we will be working hard to reach that 5-5-5! But it should be a good week. We have scheduled time each day to find father led families and prayed that throughout the week we will find 3 that are ready to progress!

Monday, April 13, 2015

April 13, 2015

Elders Ice Skating with the Kruger's 

Elder Truscott with Bro. and Sis. Sibotoboto

Elder Kupka and Elder Truscott taught a record breaking "9" lessons on exchanges

Elder Prisbrey and Elder Truscott boarding the boat to Robben Island

Elder Fonua and Elder Truscott on the way to Robben Island

Elder Mendenhall and Elder Truscott on the way to Robben Island
My week was flipping packed and looong. Ha ha ha. I will tell you all about it. That is funny that dad loves that new horse...and I'm sure Katy is more than excited, and I'm sure when I read her email she I’ll tell me all about it. Ha ha. But hopefully the vet check goes well and she will be the proud owner of Petey and Surfs up.
Zions sounds like it was a super good time! I'm glad that you are still keeping a list of places to go when I get back home! I will tell you, it’s coming faster than I can even imagine. Today I have an email from the office that is to fill out for travel plans.
This morning we went to Robben Island! That is why I'm writing lots later than usual. Robben Island is the prison that Mandela was stuck in for 18 years. It was a cool little tour that we did! We did it as a district, so me, Prisbrey, Kupka, Fonua, Mendenhall, and Pahulu all went there this morning and took the ride over to the island! It was really fun. Dang, we got stuck in Cape Town traffic big time this morning and we literally ran from where we parked the car to the place that we were departing, cause we were later than they said to be there...hahaha, it was pretty funny. But it was a fun time this morning  Sheesh, there are lots of things to write home about this week I guess!
 Last Monday after we emailed we went to Grand West with Kari and Rayno Kruger and ice skated. It was pretty fun and it felt really good to skate again. It’s been a long time and it actually got me a bit excited to try and play hockey again!
Tuesday we had MLC in the morning, so we had a skype call with President and all the zone leaders and just talked about a bunch of random things that the mission needs....mainly budgeting our money and stuff like that, it was productive and we talked about lots of things. Then after that everything dropped, so it made for a really slow day.
Wednesday we had another incredibly slow day....flip. We sat in Cape Town for ages. We had to go there to get supplies for the zone, and Mendenhall and Pahulu came with us cause they wanted to talk to Sis. Halverson about health stuff, so they did, and then we ended up sitting at the doctors office for lots of the day with them (they don’t have a car so we had to, but I didn’t mind being there for them).  If it weren’t for the father led family that we taught that morning before going to cape town we would have shot 0's again. But we luckily had a nice lesson on the Book of Mormon with Bro. Laroux that morning.
Thursday we had a zone training and interviews! So Prisbrey and I had to prepare that this week as well. It was nice. We had 2 groups of Elders for training, cause our zone is bigger. So the first group we talked about our purpose and how it relates to the atonement, unlocking the gift of all the blessings of Jesus Christ comes through the ordinances that we bring and stuff like that, and then talked about and practiced the new way of teaching we learned about last zone conference. It went well, and then we had presidents training, then lunch and the second group came in. The second group we focused only on our purpose and gave Elder Kupka a part (it was his last zone training) and it was super powerful. He talked specifically about the ordinances and what we mean to people when we are doing our part. It was a powerful training and there were tears.....of power. But it was a great start to the morning, and then that day, you guessed it, really slow. Ha ha. We had a really slow week in Bellville up to that point!
Friday I was on exchanges with Elder Vanfleet. He usually works in Goodwood and came with me to Bellville. He's a cool Elder. I like him. And we had a great day! So we wanted to set a high goal and work for it of course cause exchanges are supposed to build faith and whatever, so we made the goal of teaching 7 lessons that day! Flip we worked so hard....but we got it! We taught like mad men, and the Lord definitely helped us accomplish our goals that day, cause people just came to us, and there were people that might not progress much, but they were there to help us accomplish what we asked for!
Back to back exchanges....cause on Saturday I was with Elder Kupka in Panorama! Man that was a great exchange!! We went hard. And of course it was great cause Elder Kupka is one of my favorites! So we started the morning thinking there was a spirit in his boarding. hahaha. Long story, but there wasn’t. And then we were setting the goal for the day, and we started with saying 6 lessons. Then I asked him about doing 7. Then I asked how many was the most lessons he had ever taught in a day on mission, and he said 8....so we set the goal to teach 9. hahaha. We're out to break records ;) And we prayed and covenanted to teach 9 discussions, which was more than I've ever taught either! But then we got straight to work and wow. First house we knocked on we taught a great Restoration lesson, then even when things dropped we found and taught a lesson! We ended up finding and teaching 4 new father led families in Panorama! Super sweet!! Man! So the night was great as well!! We needed one more lesson before going to the Sibotoboto's, so we were knocking doors, and we knocked and a guy came, told us he had just started something but made an appt for Wednesday (good, but not what we needed to get our goal) so we started walking down the road, and then he whistled and called us back!! He said he started feeling bad for turning away Jesus and his wife told him to let us in, so we taught him, his wife, and his daughter the restoration and it was great!! They will still go back Wednesday and bring the Book of Mormon cause the family wants it! It was a beautiful colored family. Then the best thing to end a great day, an appt. with the Sibotoboto's! Man it was great to spend the evening with them!! Sis. Eunice cooked for us and we taught her cousin who is a recent convert (reaching our 9 lesson goal!!) and had a great night. I love them tons! But dang, two days of going hard cause of exchanges left me exhausted. hahaha. It was great though and it made for some awesome experiences and faith building!
Sunday was just the normal church thing, we had Pauling and Patricia there for investigators, our trusty 2 that should have baptism dates soon! And we have been finding lots so hopefully some of these new people will materialize and turn into great families to teach! Bellville needs people to progress that is for dang sure! But we are working hard and we will have it. The zone is definitely following though. As  Prisbrey and I work our butt off, the zone had the best week I think it’s had in a looong time. So that is awesome. This place is hopefully turning around a bit! It was a slower beginning, but we did lots this week! dang!
I really love South Africa mom. Time is flying by! 12 weeks is nothing. It freaks me out!
Love,
Elder Truscott

Monday, April 6, 2015

Tuesday was the big 2-0! April 6, 2015

Tuesday was the big 2-0! 

Elder Prisbey, Elder Fonua, Elder Mendenhall, Elder Truscott

Elder Truscott, Elder Mchunu, Elder Prisbrey, and Elder Malpage


Well this week for me....there was lots I guess...it was a looong week this one. Dang.
Monday last week we ended up getting done with the emailing pretty late, so we just hung out at the chapel here and played ping pong at the chapel. I have grown to love ping pong....haha.
Tuesday was the big 2-0! hahaha. It was a nice day. I started the morning by opening the gifts :) the I-owe-you's are pretty funny and good :) I like them a lot, and don’t worry, that was the best possible thing to send me right now. Anything else I would only enjoy for about 3 months and then have to leave it. But I love all of them really. You already know I'll need new clothes and a new suit, I especially love the one with the I phone! I took a pic so you can see the evolution I'll be going through, Nokia to Iphone. hahaha. I also like the jeep one...but I didn’t know if you were being serious so I took a pic with a straight face cause I just told the other guys you were joking (but I kept all of them). haha. Then after that  Prisbrey took me to Cinnabon in Tigervalley mall! It was pretty nice in the morning :) The other guys were on exchanges, so it was Elder Mendenhall and Elder Fonua, and they came with us so it was a really nice morning :) The rest of the day we had no appointments, so we hit the streets. We had the goal to find a prepared father led family...and I figured the Lord would bless me more because it was my birthday. hahaha, I don’t know why I was kind of disappointed, I envisioned us sitting with this dad and mom and kids teaching them a solid discussion...that didn’t happen, but we did get 3 return appts. with father led families (we've taught one already) and it was pretty nice I guess. I figured I shouldn’t have been disappointed, cause we did find them....and hopefully something comes from one of them! I have faith. haha.
Then Wednesday this week we were on exchanges with the Assistants. I was with Elder Mchuhu, he's an Elder from Durban SA. It was a really good day. We had the goal to teach 6 lessons...which was way more than any I had taught in a day since I’ve been to Bellville. But we got right to work, and we did it! The first house we knocked on the woman invited us right  in, we taught the Restoration, and she  seemed super interested. Then we got caught up with a Chinese preacher from the Church of God who just wasted tons of our time, and then we needed to do some serious teaching if we were going to do it! We went into town to try and see people there, we ended up getting called over by a less active guy named Norman who wants to get back on his feet and asked for a Book of Mormon! We taught him and another guy in town, and then we went to a different area. There we had a sweet experience. We were driving, and we saw a younger looking dad and his little son, so we pulled over and walked up to them. On the way to them this family in a nearby house was just watching us....but we just went and talked to the guy, he was super cool and we gave him a pamphlet and talked to him a bit, then on the way back to our car, I saw that 2 of the guys from that other family were still watching us. I knew the other elders had been in that area earlier, so I thought maybe they had seen them, so right as I got in the car I just felt like talking to them. I was like "Hey, (and they were just looking right at me so it was easy) have you seen elders like us here today?" and they were just like "are you Jehova's?" hahaha. like Jehova's witnesses? And we said no and went over and talked to them. Turned out to be a retired dude named Leon and his son who's in his 30's probably, and they were SUPER interested! They invited us right in and we had one of the most powerful lessons I've had in Bellville with them. They totally understood what we were saying, and wanted a Book of Mormon, I have some high hopes! But it was cool! Then we needed 2 more lessons so we went to the mall cause it was kind of dark outside, and taught 2 lessons in the mall. haha. But in all Bellville had 10 lessons that day, it was super powerful! Definitely a highlight of the week!
I think because I've been working so hard and just going hard all the time, my body was kind of  dying....so I got pretty sick Saturday....I was really cold, my stomach hurt a lot, and I had a headache....it was bad. I didn’t feel good at all, so we did some service in the morning, we painted some members' garage with them, and then I kind of rested until our lunch appt, and then general conference. It was cool though, I haven’t been fed breakfast in a home since I got here....until Saturday ;) hahaha. it was really nice.
General conference was good though. There was some nice talks from what I saw....we only saw up to the Sunday morning session, cause past that it was really late here. haha. But there were some good talks and it was a nice time! Unfortunately though after conference it was late last night, so we didn’t go to the Krugers, to answer your question about that. For some reason this week seemed super long, but it was a good one I guess. It’s been up and down and really exhausting!
We are emailing and then the Krugers want to go to Grand West and go ice skating with us, so we will be doing that and it should be really fun :)
I love you and miss you!
Love,
Elder Truscott