Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Week 14

Hello everyone,

Tuesday
Because of the lack of people at church Sunday, we spent the day visiting members and less actives who didn't come to church.

Wednesday
Because one of the bikes was broken, we walked to all of our appointments. However, they kept crashing (not there). We probably walked 10 miles but we got some great contacting in. At midweek we talked about how families can be together forever, so for the closing hymn I wanted to sing that song, but no one knew it. So we just sang I am a Child of God.

Thursday
So today we visited with some members going through a hard time. We talked, then I shared with them D&C 58:1-6. This is one of my favorite scriptures for when I am having a hard time. It really brought up their spirits.  As we were about to go to our next appointment it started to rain hard so we had to retreat to the apartment. We then met with a couple of people and then we ended the day with fufu at Brother Prospers house, I love that family they are so eager to learn the gospel.

Friday
Our apartment was fumigated, so we had to leave early. We went to teach Paul, but after there was a guy who wanted to bible bash, so we started using scriptures that are missing in his bible (there only is a dash for those scriptures in his bible) so that ended it really quick. More appointments crash and we found ourselves in a Muslim community but at the end of the road we found this Christian family and they are awesome! The grandmother probably can read English better than me. I know that as we teach them they will accept it.

Saturday
So in the afternoon evening time it rained and we had nowhere to go. I felt like we should go down this road and before we knew it, we were in the bush with very little people around. We got a phone call so we stopped biking and we took the call, but then this guy comes out of one of the houses and invites us to meet his family of 7 and they totally loved our message. So we hope to continue to teach them.

Sunday
Everyone was filled with excuses as to why they didn't want to come to church, members and nonmembers. I played the piano again, but this was amazing, for the closing hymn I chose Choose the Right and all of the talks where on choosing the right. Yeah definitely a week guided by the spirit!!!!

Love
Elder Marcusen

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Week 13

Hello Everyone,

Monday
I have been in Ghana for two months!!!! So today I traveled to HO to get my new companion Elder Kalombodza from Zimbabwe, however he didn't arrive in Ho until late so we stayed the night.

Tuesday
We arrived in HoHoe and got some food. As soon as we got to the apartment a huge storm hit knocking the power out for 24 hours again.

Wednesday
Today the real work begins. Our first appointment was with sister Ella and Melody, and it was wonderful because there were absolutely no distractions in the lesson. Then we went to sister Kafri who is a less active that we want to work with. We then went to visit brother Prosper and his wife sister Diana. Today was the happiest I have ever seen them. So picture this, two missionaries, one American and one African, and an African couple sitting under a palm tree drinking a coke in a glass bottle and talking about the gospel. It was really cool and it makes me think about how lucky I am to be able to serve the lord for two years and give it my all. This week at mid-week no one showed up except for about 10 people. I had to teach, so I taught about faith, but no one participated. So for one hour no matter what I asked they gave simple answers and nothing to produce a discussion.

Thursday
We started off by visiting sister Grace, it was the first time that I have seen her with that big of a smile. Afterwards we did some great contacting. Then we visited Paul, but before we could start teaching him someone came up to us and started preaching and trying to tell us weird things. One thing was very interesting is that he said the fifth book of john (there is no thing) and everyone that was listening completely lost it. Afterward we went to sister Regina and had a great lesson. She had questions about the Book of Mormon and she knows it to be true. Then we went to visit a part member family and the husband, a non-member was visiting with a preacher, but we didn't know he was a preacher. Very quickly he started preaching to us weird things. Ah you just have to laugh on the inside

Friday
So we found a really cool guy, we contacted him and he is learning so much. Then we visited a couple of members and one person who is 18 we contacted. It again turns in to someone preaching to us.
So here is what it takes to fill an American missionary who is in Ghana. Two packs of indomy (top roman), 3 eggs, and one loaf of bread. That is just dinner for me when we don't have a member feed us.

Saturday
So today started off with teaching sister Regina and the lesson was going really well.  We extended a Baptismal date and she accepted. Then we met a less active member who is awesome and invited him to come to church. Today we went around teaching and inviting people to church.

Sunday
So for all you back home, who remembers how much I can play the piano? Well, I couldn't play at all. I didn't even know which keys where what or anything.  So today I became the pianist at church. I have been teaching myself because we have a keyboard in the apartment. Now I will be teaching my companion. The thing is, at church no one knows the hymns so I chose “Because I have been given much”, and they didn’t even know it. So with only 29 people at church and I being the only one knowing the hymn it was really rough. There are about 10 hymns that are not Christmas hymns that they know, so I know what we will be doing at mid-week from now on, teaching hymns.

This week was interesting, we were almost taught to more than we taught people. So yeah its very interesting here in Ghana.

Love, Elder Marcusen 

Elder Marcusen on exchanges with Elder Black in Kpando
(Picture courtesy of Elder Black)

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Week 12

Hello everyone,

Hope everything back in the states is going great. Sorry this email is later, we had transfers on Monday and the power also went out.

Monday
Since the entire zone was in Hohoe last night my MTC comp and I slept in hammocks under the African stars.  The apartment was so full of missionaries.

Tuesday
After district counsel we returned to HoHoe and had to clean up the apartment because 20 elders in one apartment can really make it messy. After we then went to a couple of appointments

Wednesday
So most of our investigators farm and its farming season. We were able to convince Sister Ella and Melody to let us come join them.  Their farm is in the bush so when we got there we had to clear the land with Cutlasses (Machetes). They were so surprised by how well I could work the machete. After clearing then we planted maze. Afterwards, we visited brother Samuel whose apartment is being removed because the government wants to widen the road so he has to move.

Thursday
We returned to the farm again. It’s so fun to clear the African bush with a Machete! After we went to brother Prosper who is giving a talk on Sunday and helped him prepare for it by telling him to pray and study.

Friday
This was the last day on the farm so we finish clearing and planting the maze. So in total it probably was about the size of a football field that was dense African bush. Then we met a guy who is from up north who says there is people who want to learn but it’s too far north. We think this guy is trying to build his own church. In the evening transfer news came, I am staying in HoHoe but am getting a new companion who is from Zimbabwe.

Saturday
We spent the day visiting people my companion wanted to see before he goes. We then met with brother Thomas and started doing family scripture study with him and we hope they will continue to do it every day, not just when we come.

Sunday
So a storm came in the morning and knocked out the power but it returned exactly at 9:00 when church started. However, we only had 32 people at church which is really low. Oh and I finished reading the book of Mormon that I started reading when I got to Ghana. I love to read and study it. I have marked it all up and cross referenced it a lot.

I hope you all enjoy conference this weekend for me. I don't get to watch it until they send it out on a cd to all the missionary’s in the bush because the internet isn't good enough.

Love
Elder Marcusen   

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Week 11

Hello Everyone,

Sorry for the short email this week.

So this week we had a very busy week.  Tuesday we taught a lesson then Wednesday we traveled to Ho for the multi Zone Conference in Kpong on Thursday with Elder Kacher of the 70.  It was so spiritually refreshing. He taught about how important the Book of Mormon is in teaching and it can be used to answer any question. We should use it more because it’s one of the things that we have that no other church has and the Spirit is so strong when it is used to testify of Christ. I also was able to buy more Reese's which are sooooo good. Then on Sunday we had the conformation for Sampson and Pamela because last week the branch President was traveling. A cool experience we had was at brother Prospers home. His wife told us whenever she feeds us, that her sales the next day sky rocket. So today Monday we had a zone activity and we went back to the waterfalls, but this time we went to the upper falls. To get there it is straight up! It’s even worst then Angles Landing in Zions National Park, but there is no rope and the pictures don't do it justice, but it was awesome.

Love,
Elder Marcusen

Wli Upper Falls

Monday, September 11, 2017

Week 10

Hello everyone,

Monday
We taught a lesson to brother Felix's family.  They are new investigators who have good potential. From what I could tell in the lesson, they have a true desire to learn. In the middle of the lesson a member, who is on vacation visiting family, saw us and came and said she wanted us to teach her family. So we took her number to call after the lesson. We called her and set up a time to come Tuesday and visit.

Tuesday
We went to Kpando for district counsel. It’s so nice to see other missionaries. We went to Samson and Pamela's home and finished up all of the lessons, so they are good to go for their baptismal interviews. After we went to that person’s family home who contacted us yesterday and we asked if we could do service for them and they said yes, which was a real surprise. So we went and fetched water from the well and filled up their water storage. Because of our service, they said they wanted to learn. Then we went to brother Thomas's home and we did something different. We did an activity to help build their family. I think that as we keep working with them they can continue on the path to the gospel. Oh, and the grandson told us that he wants to be baptized so we will keep working with them.

Wednesday
Not much happened, just a couple of lessons. I taught mid-week on how we need to stand as a witness of God because people are looking to us, and how we are like a city on a hill. However, this week only 5 people showed up so I had to change it a little because I was expecting the usual 20 people that show up. But, it was still a great lesson.

Thursday
The District leader came to interview Samson and Pamela, so his companion Elder Black (one of my mtc group members) and I went contacting. I figured out that you contact people doing work like laundry or dishes and ask to help. They always will say no but then you can share a message and talk with them and they will always listen to you. In the evening we went to one of our investigators, Sister Melody and she let us help her take the corn off the cob. I probably did a hundred ears of corn and it really hurts the thumb after 50.

Friday
We had a lesson in the morning where we had to use an interpreter to teach, which made it go really slow. You can only say one sentence then you have to wait.  However, the children are amazing, they already are coming to church.

Saturday
It was the absolute best!  We had Samson’s and Pamela’s baptism. It has been wonderful to see them grow from the very beginning. I had the opportunity to be the one to baptize them. You could just see the joy in their face after they were baptized. I know that they will continue to grow and become strong members.

Sunday
It was wonderful, we got a call to come open the church early because there were people waiting which never happens. At church we had 50 and they almost all were early or on time. It also was fast and testimony meeting because of the meeting last week. It was probably the best Sunday I have had here in Africa.  

Love,
Elder Marcusen


Samson and Pamela's Baptism


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Week 9

Hello Everyone,

Thank you for the emails.  I wish I had enough time to write back each person.

Monday
After emailing I was reminded how loving the people here in Ghana are. On the taxi ride back to HoHoe, the two people next to me were eating bananas and said your invited, but at the time I was eating a loaf of bread so it was cool. It’s so amazing the love people have for a complete stranger here.

Tuesday
It was the best. After District counsel, we had splits for 24 hours so I was with Elder Gamil, the District leader. Our first appointment was with Samson and Pamela. I taught the rest of the plan of salvation which was incredible. The Spirit was so strong in the lesson. After I finished the plan of salvation I started the Gospel of Jesus Christ and about faith, which is probably my most favorite lesson to teach. So after the lesson we were on our way to the next one and a huge storm came so we retreated to our apartment. The storm knocked the power out for a couple of hours. After it passed we went to Brother Thomas’ home and we were able to get the entire family to come. We answered their questions and I taught about how you know the church is true, you have told us. Now you should experiment by coming to church and see your faith grow. I could tell that they really felt the spirit in the lesson. I also cut my own hair with a little help.

Wednesday
In the morning, we went to Kpando to meet back up with our companions. When we returned to HoHoe, we set up an appointment with Samson’s mother so we can get her permission to baptize them. When we met with her she said she was happy for her children because she saw the joy and happiness that the gospel is bringing in to their lives.

Thursday
President and Sister Keyes came to our apartment to meet and interview us. I absolutely love them they are so awesome. Afterwards we went to a member’s shop to meet a new investigator, but we ended up waiting two hours for her to come. In the lesson, she really loved our message. Afterwards we met with a recent convert and she gave us a referral for a family of 3 that we talked to and set up an appointment for next week.

Friday
We met with brother Emanuel who contacted us saying he had just moved here and had been meeting with missionaries in another mission. After we went to a recent convert who is having a hard time so I gave him a blessing and you could see that it brought peace to him. Then we visited a member who is sick with malaria and also gave her a blessing. Before she was not smiling and down, but after she was smiling and had more energy.

Saturday
We went to brother Thomas and found out why he is struggling to commit to leave his church. We are helping him. Then we went to meet with sister Patience and the investigator we met with at the shop. This time we met at her home and her family of 3 children joined. They really loved the message we shared with them and you could tell they really felt the Spirit. Then we traveled to HO and met with the zone and our mission president and wife. We played games and ate pizza!!!!! It was so nice to have pizza. I ate so much of it!

Sunday
We had district conference and President Keyes spoke about faith and hope, which was really powerful. The down side to the conference was that the AC broke and it got really hot.  However, the messages shared where great. In the evening, we traveled back to HoHoe.

So Ghana is just a little bigger than Utah, but the roads are not good. So to travel short distances it takes so long and its really bumpy.

Love Elder Marcusen

Sunday, September 3, 2017

A Little Mission Fun


These videos were posted on the Ghana Accra private mission page this week by Sister Keyes.  Our family sure had a good laugh watching the videos.

Sister Keyes described the game as followed:
A certain amount of people have to leave the room if they do not know the game. Each one then gets a turn to be under the blanket after being called in. He lays under the blanket with 'the actual bopper'! The bopper 'gently'.. bops the unsuspecting person on the head .. he has to be fast in sitting up - saying 'Brother - I've been bopped!' and then he then has to guess who bopped him. He thinks its one of the people standing around them with their hands behind their back. The actual bopper is the other person under the blanket with him. Its a great game for bonding and releasing pent up stress etc.

video
President Keyes, Mission President

video
Elder Marcusen

video
Elder Marcusen