Monday, July 8, 2013

Pineapple farms and blessings - July 8, 2013

Dear Mom,
  Well I think I have had some of the best days on my mission and the very best Sunday at least. We didn't baptize anyone this week( that won't come until next 2 weeks) but it was sure full of a lot powerful experiences.
  So last Monday when we finished emailing- Me, Lilo, Moyer, And Palentonga all went on a nice evening bike ride( because when you are with me you just can't get enough biking in the week.) We went riding in the bush and found ourselves going to the pineapple farm. By the time we got there they had closed, but the few workers that remained gave us each a pineapple and talked with us for a little while. A few questions about the church came up and they told us to come back this week and they would give us a tour of the facilities. So when I am finished emailing I'll be heading back up there.
  Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursdays were the average days of going tracking and finding in my area. I went a lot of places I have not been before with either Moyer or Osur and Hurley. It was some how productive and will be doing it again this week. Tuesday evening we went to Bro Larbies as we do every Tuesday and Friday night. Though he doesn't have much he always wants to feed us because he recognizes the blessings it brings. He has begun to gear up to become a rabbit farmer. It was an interesting idea, but he is moving along with the project pretty well. We have helped a little bit in building a rabbit hutch that is about 14 feet high with several levels for the rabbits. Crazy idea but he is excited and I hope it all goes well for him.
   Friday- We traveled to a place called Kaneshine, to the stake center for our first mission Conference as the Ghana Accra West Mission. Here we met everyone serving in the new mission( except for one zone that is far out in the bush, which included Bay.) Smeltzer and a few of my other buddies have stayed in this mission and I was glad to see them. I met for the first time President and Sister Hill. He is  taller and older man then Pres. Judd and is from Texas but back in the 1990s he lived in Nigeria for almost 5 years. So he is pretty familiar with West Africa. I really look forward to serving with him and Sister Hill. The new office couple Elder and Sister Wall are really cool as well.
Later when we got home we cooked a Mango pie in the Mtn man oven and it was delicious after which we then went to the normal dinner at Larbies. Saturday I went to teach this awesome family we found at the end of last transfer. The Mensiah family lives far away from the church but every week they make the sacrifice to pay for transport to church.  The father Sammy, his wife Mondy, and the 8 yr old daughter will hopefully be baptized at the end of the month. There are two other children one 2 and the other 10 months. I really love this family and we have really bonded with them. Saturday I spent most of the time there helping de-cobb corn so it could be ground into flour, acts of service like that really make the time we spend together even more meaningful.
  Sunday is the day that really hit me hard with a spiritual feeling. We were able to confirm not only the 2 girls baptized last week but just before the sacrament meeting closed we had a boy baptized a while ago show up and get confirmed. His aunt hates the church and always keeps him from coming but this week he either snuck out or finally broke her and made it. I was asked to do the confirmations and the first one I missed up on because I was called on spot, never having done a confirmation before. Then we all 4 missionaries bore our testimonies and I really felt the ward as my family. Even some of the members mentioned me in their testimonies. The best part was that we finally had a couple members bring us referrals to church, it was beautiful.
   We had a few Fms after church because the ward loves me! :) One was at our recently called mission leaders house were we watched the story of the church coming to Ghana, mostly by the work of J.W. Billy Johnson. I think it was called Our testimony or something so if you can you should watch it. Anyways I know I have complained a lot about my area and its true this area is hard, but I will be so heart-broken when I'm transferred because I love the members so much and they really have made my mission a lot easier. I know my purpose here now and I hope to continue working in this place for the rest of my mission - haha :) Thanks for the love and support, I miss my family back home, but the family here is helping.
Loving the work in Ghana, Your Son,
    Elder Steven T. Ray
If you are planning to send a large box anytime soon it might be wise to send me a new camera. I'm doing my best with this one, but its fading fast and I'll soon have it die on me completely. Also new Mission address is
                                           Ghana Accra West Mission
                                           PO Box 12741
                                           Accra North
                                           Accra Ghana
So I think that is all for this week.

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