Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Totally Stoked 04/26/11 Back to Cape Town

Elder Balmforth, Yvonne, Elder Folzard
If I look stressed it's because we just taught
in front of President and Sister Probst

Hello All,
So, I did not email yesterday because it was a holiday and we could not get on any computers because everything was closed.  So I got my transfer news a little early from President Probst.  Oh, my goodness a crazy couple of days!!!!  So, yes I am South Africa, Cape Town's  newest office elder!!  There are three of us Elder Marler and Elder Winager both Americans, hallelujah and Elder Winager is from Utah, I haven't met them yet. I fly out at 6 pm tomorrow ugh, I hate late evening transfers! I am way excited but nervous and a little stressed out, but it will be nice I will have my own computer and maybe I can keep my email up all day I dunno!  So the basics that I do know is that Ii will be in the office from morning till 5pm then I will go to my area (all white again:( till about 8 or 9.  Its in the heart of Cape Town so a little more dangerous. I know that I'll drive a nicer car, (not that those things really matter) and I will get to work with the Herberts,  ALOT!!!!  Until they leave in July.  I love the Herberts!  So, I guess the reason they are bringing a few elders into the office is because most of the senior couples are going home and we are not getting more as far as I know, also my new P day will be Wednesday, that's the day the office is closed. I have no idea about anything else and now my whole skype for mothers day plan is ruined. but I'll let you know!

So I just sent a package today let me know when or if you get it!!  MOM THANK YOU FOR THE PICTURES, and Katee thanks for the picture of Kelsee's rock.  Kelsee its a little pathetic that the missionaries have to do all the communicating! JK

So this week has beem a crazy one and I am SOOO excited for this transfer!  I'm not even going to beat around the bush.  So earlier this week a crazy white member gave us this "talk" from forever ago.  So Elder Fozard read it and it was all about why the blacks are cursed and crap like that!  It just made him more racist!  I was just annoyed and not very nice about it!  We also had THREE baptisms!  In the river!!!  I baptized Clive and Jennifer and a member baptized John.  It was an amazing experience!

So we met this lady in the dark walking home from work ha she was so nice but a little crazy!  We got talking to her and she said she was a Wicka?  I said A whata?  And she said basically that shes a witch......but she believes in god and we gave her a book of mormon and she is reading it!  She was way funny!  When we said goodbye we said "be careful walking home, and she said oh I will I've got god......and my knife.  Hahaha guess you just would have had to been there!

We have done tons of tracking!  And it was way cool after the first three doors we both looked at each other and said "have you noticed that all those people spoke full Afrikaans and no English?  The point is we understood them.....sure they were all rejections but we understood!!!   My Afrikaans is coming along well, I wont speak it because I'm to scared but I understand it!!!

Yesterday we went to Knysna for our p day visit!  I saw the Stephenson's there doing well!  And then we saw Elder Nzuki and he is doing great!  He is going to be a zone leader in East London!  He's a really good missionary and he will be great!

So it was a really weird Easter!  But no offence because I really did miss you all but it was probably my favorite Easter!  I had a lot of time to focus on the Savior and his life and the atonement.  I always love to be able to focus on him and I know that he knows me and all that he went through was for each of us personally!  I know that he truly is the Son of God and that he lives!  I am so lucky to be able to share my testimony of the Savior every day!  I hope every ones Easter was as good as mine.
I haven't really gotten attached to George!  I will miss some families, but I'm excited to serve in the office!  So I will email again whenever!  Probably next Wednesday but i have no idea??  Have a great week!  Love ya all!!!

Elder Balmforth

Monday, April 18, 2011

A week of ups and downs

Well well well!!!!!  I'm only doing one email because of time!  Sorry!  Thanks for the pictures of Brayden!!!  He's freaking cute!  He looks like Calee and Dave too a little!  I wish you could send him in a package but its probably not the best idea!  I love the picture of Parker and Brayden, its cool! Brayden looks like a little G in one of them! hmmmmmm.  Well I wish I could be there but I'm doing fine here!  I LOVED GENERAL CONFRENCE!!!!!!!!!!!  I'll give you some insights later!

So sorry my email was a little hostile last week I feel the same this week but I'll try to be nicer hah. I really don't try to sound mean.  So Calee and Dave thank you for your emails I will email you both back next week when I have more time, it really means lot that you thought of me.  I've been thinking about you guys all week!  I did get the call from sister Herbert so thanks dad for calling, I was jealous she spoke to you!!  I'm also glad you all sent pictures because if I didn't have then I was going to go on email strike!

Well, we have THREE baptisms on Saturday!  I'm not counting but that will be seven for Elder Balmforth but there just blessings to be able to be apart of their amazing decisions to follow our Savior!
1st is Clive and Jennifer a great couple from Zimbabwe!  Yes they are black in my white area!  They live in a white families shed, there the house keepers.  Sad. but they are great people and they have two little kids one can be baptized in about a year!!  They are so excepting to the gospel and what our father in heaven expects of them!  The kids also love sweet tart jelly beans haha and Elder Balmforth!

Then there is John a 13 year old boy, his dad was a less active but the spirit reactivated him hahah, cheesy and then John got interested!  He's great to teach!  Even the law of chastity he liked to learn about haha.  It got a little awkward though when freaking Elder Fozard starts saying "how do you say $#%^&@# in Afrikaans, ugh Law of Chastity got awkward involving hand actions from Johns dad.

We also taught an awesome lesson on Monday to a nice white couple Ben and Maudy.  It went awesome we started teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ but at the exact same time we both got really strong impressions to teach the restoration!  I LOVE teaching with the spirit!  What would missionaries do with out it?.........twiddle there thumbs.

So we also see this recent convert named Cecilia, shes a very nice colored lady!  I love her she's my favorite in George!   She reminds me of Kath, just a little short lady who would do anything for anyone!  She feeds us all the time and her daughter lives with her and just treats her terrible!  Cecilia cooks and cleans and caters to her 35 year old daughter so the other day we watched Mormon messages with her and they really helped her ALOT thanks mom and dad!

Also! You know Elder Henrico who I serve around, yeah I'm pretty sure Laura Walkers brother baptized him.  I'm not exactly sure because his English is very broken, so conversations involve alot of nodding the head but I'm pretty sure!

General Conference!!!!  Now I know why Kelsee is getting married!  She got rebuked through conference! haha just kidding!  But it was great!  I loved what Lynn G Robbins said, the child who takes the most patients is the bigger blessing but I think my parents got a lot of blessings because I can see how all four of us took tons of patients! (but I know I'm the most blessed child) I love how they talked about the welfare program so much and charity.  I always try to think "have I done any good in the world today" and its hard when we live in a world full of selfishness that I get caught up in way too much.  I also love the talks on the temple!  I don't think any one from Utah understands how spoiled we are! GO AND DO TEMPLE WORK.  Our responsibility is greater because were more privileged!  Take advantage of temple work!  I wish I could haha!  Our branch just scrimped and saved all year so they could drive in an old beat up bus to the temple in Jo burg !^  Eight or more hours aways!  And I didn't hear one complaint before they left or when they came back!!

I love this gospel, I love our Savior.  I KNOW that this gospel is the only way back to our father in heaven and that its available to every one!!!!!  In conference they said its not easy being a latter day saint but its the only way!

Well this week has been FULL of UPS and DOWNS!  I really miss my family a lot and wish I could just go home for an hour to see Brayden but  know I'm here for a purpose and I can help people to be together forever I love you family friends and Nephew!  Have a great week!

Elder Balmforth

Sorry, I have been busy.

I have been a little slow at blogging this week because this happened.  Brayden John Van Cott was born on April 11, 2011.  He is the cutest thing ever.  Being a grandma is the best.  Colton is very happy he is here and healthy.  Just had to share.  I think he looks a lot like Colton, lucky kid.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Busy Week 04/11/11

Hello All,

I got the package first of all and I loved it thank you all so much!  Mom, the only thing else you could send is that other shirt that is a thin grey hoodie with blue thick stripes on the front.  But, I loved all the stuff in there! And the Cd's are GREAT Janelly thank you!

My companion is okay I just have no patients, but hes cool I need to not be so serious all the time.  He's just a spoiled English guy.  But I can deal with it.

First of all I wanna talk about Peter.  I feel so bad for him I hope he is doing okay!  Its NOT easy and I DO NOT blame him one bit even if others do!  Everyone is different and I think another mission would be good for him or whatever he thinks!  Just tell him your proud of him he gave what he could and he still has a desire to serve.  No one will know what this experience is like for others because every one handles it so differently. Other missionaries just are fine and others really struggle!  Just encourage him to keep his testimony strong and I know he will be an amazing missionary.

Judd, I cant imagine what you have been through,  I'm so freaked out and to be honest I wish I wouldn't have known about Kim!  I'm way worried about her and I hope shes okay!  Please don't tell me about stuff like that unless some one dies then I expect a phone call!  I know I told you I could handle it but I can't and I just need to be focused.  Now I'm just 10000000% more worried about Calee and Kim!  I'm not mad you told me just future reference I don't want to know.  There's nothing I can do and I can't focus on two things.  Kim, I love you and Judd and your family have been in my prayers day and night and will be for a while now!

(With all this freaking news this Internet cafe needs a tissue box at the computers, I'm a hot mess.)

With Kelsee getting married as far as I'm concerned that's just one big headache I don't have to have.  I mean its a little harder then I thought but I'm okay.   Congrats Riley and Kelsee!  Just no babies though then I'll be mad.

This week has just been crazy with ups and downs!  Miracles do happen we had a white woman in church on Sunday!  We have just been praying and praying for her to come!  Her name is Zontie and she is very nice but talks ALOT!!!

We also went teaching with President and Sister Probst.  We took them to everyone, she rocks, they called her a GOLDEN investigator!  She is great!  We just have to work with some issues before she is baptized, but the lesson went amazing and the spirit was so strong.  It was one of my favorite lessons so far.

Okay with those tape recorders......dad take my card and GO BUY A NEW RECORDER!!!  One side of it was so bad I couldn't even here anything.  I'm still very grateful for the tape but please!  Or give Katee the jacked up one. hahaha

I can't believe Calee's little belly its soooo cool!  I wanna poke it!  Well I'm sure there will be a baby soon?  Hopefully!  I'm excited for Kim and Judd and I want  pictures sooner or later plz!

We get to watch conference this weekend, I am sooo stoked.  It will be awesome, I'm a little bitter you have already seen it, but that's okay.  I know it will be great.

Well,  Its been a weird week I'm just so thankful for all that I have and how blessed I am.  This is hard but worth it and I know that its true!  Its hard to except for some people but its eternal life and happiness.  I'm so thankful for our savior and repentance, we would all be lost with out him!  I met a nice lady who let us in!  We asked her what she would say if the savior was at her door.  She said with a tear in her eye "thank you" it was a great experience.  She then gave me a jar of mayo and sent us on our way.  They like mayo.  Well I hope every one has a great week!  Thanks for all the love and support from everyone.  Love you all.

Elder Balmforth

Monday, April 4, 2011

Cold in Africa 04/04/11

Hello Family!
  Guess what I'm emailing you from a nice cold AFRICA!!!!!!!!!!  This week winter/heaven has begun they said this is how cold it gets but......its not that cold hahah.  The older elders are wearing long sleeved shirts, sweaters, and there jackets!!!!!!!!  I am wearing a short sleeved shirt and I wish I could take more off!  I love my life!!

So lets talk missionary work........this week we had Zone Conference on Tuesday and I had exchanges with Elder Dillon our DL on Friday.  Zone Conference was great!  I'm really going to miss the Probst's,  they are amazing teachers! The four hour drive wasn't to bad because I didn't have to drive the whole time!  Elder Cowey in my transfer is in my zone now and so it was cool to see him.  I also saw Elder Nzuki.
Exchanges were a blast we tracted alot and people are just mean sometimes.  We went up to this house and the door was open with two men and a woman inside so I said hello how are you (in Afrikaans) and they answered in Afrikaans "fine in you" I said I'\m good then in English I said well were missionaries from the church and he interrupted and said GOODBYE.....so I said,  well we just share a.......he said do you know what goodbye means, and elder Dillon said um yes?  And he said well get off my door step then haha rejection sucks!
Then we had an appointment with a man who seemed desperate to meet with us.  So we went and he kindly invited us in and we sat down and we asked if we could start with a prayer and he said "only if I can say it", so we said okay, even though that's usually a bad thing!  So he prayed exactly how we do and after he immediately began talking.......seriously for an hour we could NOT get a word in!  We try ed so hard!  So an hour later he said "so in conclusion I wanted to bring you here to tell you that your serving SATAN" .....ouch! So we try ed to use scriptures to fix his problems and we basically won but we didn't argue so we just left!  I was so annoyed that he knew the sacrifice missionaries make and he had the nerve to tell us we were wasting our time and we were serving SATAN, oh I could have  slapped his bald Afrikaner head to the floor!  So when we left Elder Dillon was fine but I was so annoyed!  He told me that he was always so offended when that happened to him but one of his companions told him that Christ was spit on, slapped in the face, mocked and much more.  So when that happens to us were only one step closer to the savior!  It really helped and honestly I felt closer to him.

We also tracted into a man who claims to be a white wizard.........don't ask all I know is I'm not going back it was creepy he looked like a serial killer!
We also tracted into a man the other day when we felt really impressed to knock at his door when we started talking about the love god has for us he just broke down and cryed!  He believes that god sent us for him and I also know without a doubt that that is true and that this gospel can truly help people so much!  When we went back he made us curry!  It was lekker!

So just a question do you fly a SA flag? I sure hope so!!
So with letters I am just putting all my letters in a package I'm sending home to save on stamps so my family will need to deliver them!  Sorry I'm so cheap!  Anyway,  I'm doing really well and I love it in George!  The transfer is already more then half over!  I cant believe how fast its going!!  On mothers day I can for sure 100% skype if I'm still in George but I'm sure I will be!  I'm excited for that!  When you send a new package will you send my white shirt with black sleeves.  I plan on taking some of Elder Dillon's nice shirts because he's going home in July!! hehe anyways.

Ive have had a great week, together the mission fasted for more senior couples and the spirit was very strong with us all day I'm so thankful for the power of fasting and prayer.  I know that our father in heaven knows and loves us individually and he does answer our prayers.  I've never prayed so much and so hard in my whole life and with out it I would be messed over!  Well I love you all and I'm so thankful for such amazing family and friends, being so far away I can see who my true family and friends are and I think I have the best! I love you all and hope you have a great week!

Love Elder Balmforth