Monday, August 27, 2012

Long Lost Miracle!!! 08/27/12

Hello Everyone,
At the beginning of 2011 I was serving in Knysna with Elder Nzuki.  I remember one of my last days in Knysna.  I had already received the call that I was going to George.  On one of my last days we were doing some finding.  I remember Elder Nzuki asked me, "where do you feel we should go finding?"   So, I remember thinking and driving to a certain area in the Knysna township.  I parked the car and we got out and began tracting.  We didn't have any immediate success until we saw a lady siting under a tree in the shade.  She was holding a really new baby.  We began talking to her and then she invited us in her home. Her name was Yoliswa.  We asked if we could share a message with her and she said, "yes" and so we opened with a prayer and taught what I remember to be a pretty good lesson.  We set a return appointment that would happen only after I left Knysna.
This week I went on exchanges in Knysna with Elder Andriamenentena.  He was taking me around and then told me we could go visit a sister who was in the relief society presidency.  So we pulled up to the house and I recognized it as the same house as Yoliswa.  Elder Andriamenentena then told me how she and her family were baptized and they are powerful members!  So, we walked in and I saw Yoliswa and her two kids.  She shook my had and looked at my tag and said hello......then she paused and yelled, "ELDER BALMFORTH", I thought I would never see you again!  She just was so happy and said thank you.  She said that day we came she never thought that she would be this far, this close to her heavenly father and this happy.  Its not like it was anything I did.  I met the woman once.  It was so awesome to see how much the gospel and heavenly father has helped this awesome family!
So my exchanges in George and Knysna were awesome!  I was able to see a lot of great people that I love! The drive was really tiring but it was fun.  Sister Botha and Carey and Shaun from Bellville came all the way to George to visit me!  Man, they are the best!  It was awesome to have lunch with them!  So we got back on Friday night.  This week is going to be another really busy one!  We have Zone Conference with Elder Carl B. Cook of the seventy.  So we are organizing that, it will be on Friday.  George and Knysna are coming up the day before.  Oh on our way to George we get a call that An Elder is in the hospital ready to have his appendix out.  So he had it out while we were there.  So it was good that we were going down he is doing well and living it up with the senior couple haha. 
Oh and last week we were looking for some members and when we found the address we met a different family who had just moved in.  So we asked if we could come back on Sunday.  So last night we went there and met the coolest family.  A mom and a dad and three kids.  It was a way spiritual lesson where they told us about alot of challenges they were facing and the father said he was always so confused about why there are so many churches.  He also said he was praying for someone to come and help strengthen his family!!!!!!!!!!  It was so cool!  So its been a great week with lots of miracle's.  I love missionary work! I love you all thanks for everything.

Elder Balmforth and Elder Cowey with the elder who just got his appendix out.

The tree where Elder Balmforthand Elder Nzuki first found Yoliswa in Knysna.

Elder Balmforth and Yoliswa and two of her children.

Elder Balmforth in the middle of a bunch of signs pointing to different churches.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Great Week in PE 08/20/12

Well its been a great week.  Things are definitely looking up in PE!  We found a lot of new people which was really needed because there was NO one!  So we focused on referrals and we got seven!  That's pretty good here!  So we have had some awesome first lessons.  We have also been teaching the Sanadyo Family. They are recent converts and there doing great.  We taught a lot about the priesthood.  We committed Brother Sanadyo to pass the sacrament.  He was so nervous but understood the importance of magnifying his calling and exercising the priesthood.  It was a really cool experience to see him pass the sacrament on Sunday.  He did awesome. T hose are some of the best moments in missionary work!
We also went to Knysna for a partial Zone meeting.  George elders met us there and it was a great meeting. We have really been focusing on obedience and how we all need to be obedient.  I really don't get how its so hard I mean, yeah I'm not perfect but there are reasons were obedient and its not because we don't want to get caught it should be out of love.  A love for God and the Savior.  Again I'm really not perfect or anything close to it, but that is what has helped me to be better.  Within the next 2 months we will have over 40 new missionaries and they will pretty much follow what ever we do (except I won't be here) but the training has helped every one step it up.  Going to Knysna was a blast its about a 3.5 hour drive and George is 4.5 hours. We are going to their District meetings and having exchanges down there this week.
This week we also had a cool service project.  We planted three good size gardens at an orphanage that will help them become more self reliant.  It was fun and the whole PE ward was in on it.  We also committed a girl named Lithi to baptism.  So now we have one person haha.  But its all good.  We will find more and help them progress. 
We are all getting excited for the next Zone conference,  Elder Carl B. Cook will be coming so it should be good.  Our stake is also getting a new stake president and maybe some boundary changes so every one is speculating about that.  We live in a flat behind some awesome members named the Fourie family.  They fed us yesterday and it was really good.  Sister Fouries' cake is awesome it was granadilla cake!  I will miss all the fruits and vegetables here.  Anyways I'm doing great and loving it here in PE.  Elder Cowey is fetchin awesome and were having a blast and working hard.  I hope every one is doing well.  OH, I have been bad at birthdays_ so Happy Birthday to, Marianne, Janet, Mer, and next week Lydia and Jen!  I hope I didn't forget anyone.  I love you all, have a good week.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Great Week at Zone Conference 08/13/2012

WOW, what a week!  On Monday we flew to Cape Town for Zone Leader Council and it was a ton of fun and the trainings were really good.  Most the missionaries are really old on mission time so we talked a lot about example because there are over 40 new elders coming within 12 weeks to replace us.  It was a nice couple of days.  We came home on Wednesday evening.  Elder Acton left this morning and so now its just me and good old Elder Cowey.  We are so excited to work!  There is a lot of work to do.  We need to find more people to teach and really want to work with the inactive members.  We have a lot of ideas to work with the Ward and  are working with the ward mission leader to put together a fire side.  So there is a lot to do!
Yesterday we went on exchanges with Elder Byers, so all three of us from the same transfer.  It was a good day.  Then the Vansickles fed us!!!!  It was awesome.  Imported turkey and stuffing because they don't have either of that here.  Haha it was sooooo nice and the Taylor's were also there.  They go home at the end of September!  They were brand new when I came out!   Time seriously flies.
We have a recent convert family named the Sanadyoes.  Half our area is township and the other town.  We work mostly in town though.  Anyways this family is really cool.  We have been teaching them some great lessons and excited to set some goals for them to go to the temple.
We are also working with a family named the Clarke's, they have not been active for 26ish years and they are coming back and the change you see in them is awesome!  Sister Clarke just said "it felt good to be back".  She made us some bed socks as well and they are real warm haha.  It's been cold at night but pretty warm during the day.  Summer is coming.
Well my letter next week should and will be better.  I hope everything at home is going good.  Its awesome the La Vitas are at my house.  I hope they are enjoying it.  I am glad Grandma is doing well.  I love all of you and thanks for all you do.