11 August 2014

I'll go where He wants me to go

Hey, Family!!!

Ay! I'm glad to hear the homecoming was good! I love the Hezseltines. :) And it's sweet that you talked to Elder Widdison! His accent is basically how I've been talking. I spent those last few days in the apartment with him, and his accent seems fine to me. ;) My accent has gotten way thicker since Mother's day, but it'll probably reduce now that I'm in Ghana. More on that later. Those pictures with Elder Humpherys are hilarious! Elder Humpherys, as you know, was my first zone leader. So that's cool to see you with him! He likes to have fun, so it sounds just like him. I've seen that scripture case before, too! It sounds like you guys had a party with that homecoming. 

I'm glad you liked the videos. :)  [he sent his camera card home with the Hezseltines, on it were a few short videos, one from mid-May with him talking in the background. His accent was thick.]  I still talk in some kind of Coloqwa with the Ghanaians, but not as much. Definitely not deep Coloqwa. The accent here is more British, but mostly.. well, mostly people speak Fantee. An entire language, not just something that I can sit back and gradually adapt to. I'm learning it already! I'm taking notes from tons of members as they teach me. They love teaching me!

So, this week was crazy. I already emailed you halfway through it, so here's just the last half. :)
Somewhere in Ghana. Where will this path take him?
Thursday was the day I was interviewed and called to serve with Elder Hinckley in Agona! I showed up to their apartment that night. The apartment's pretty nice, I don't really know what to say about that. There's a shower! Not many mosquitoes. Looks like a nuclear shelter. I cleaned it a ton this morning. On Friday I had my first day proselyting in Ghana! Only a few lessons, but a great time meeting people and.. being in shock from the language. I got kissed on the cheek by a drunk man that day too.. Ew. What a crazy day. The area is BEAUTIFUL, too. Another note that I wrote down.. There are fireflies on the pathway back to our apartment (after all the long car rides to our area)! My first time seeing fireflies that I really remember. Anyway, Friday was another day of trying my best to be a missionary! I'm learning a lot from Elder Hinckley. He's the district leader right now! We were MTC mates! So we have a good time talking to each other. Sunday was cool, we went to church and all. The building is so nice, and the classes are being taught in English and Fantee at the same time! The teacher just talks in both as he teaches. It's really interesting to sit through. We took a "tro-tro" to Agona after church (after taking some photos with my district at the castle), and we proselyted for the rest of the day. That was an amazing day. Members were going with us, we got so many referrals, everybody was so happy and missionary work was so wonderful. Elder Hinckley made a comment: "I've never tasted this fruit before.." both of us with smiles on our faces being surrounded by Ghanaians in this village. That's what they call Agona. A village. But don't think of those African villages that are made out of mud and sticks, it's better than that. There are cement regular African buildings, though there are tons of hills. I can't describe how beautiful this place is.
Agona Village
Elmina Castle
View from Elmina Castle to the bay
You asked how it is to serve in a ward. Well, I'm not in one! I worship with them at this point, but we're hoping to move buildings into Agona soon. We're an unorganized unit right now. Hopefully we'll be an official unit soon. :)  Great food! Just different. They don't eat pepper. (pepay..) At all. It's really different, not as spicy. Very little rice, too. Mostly banku and fufu. "swallow" foods. Another note that I found: people dress so nice to church here! I mean, it's nothing crazy, but it's nicer than where I'm coming from. It's interesting! Just much more consistency in the standard of dress. Also, another note, if I could get a fantee/fanti to english dictionary or grammar book that'd be WONDERFUL. :) I'm trying to learn as best as I can. Also, they don't take free rides very much. The cab system here is very very organized. You go to a "station" which is where you can very calmly get in a car that's heading to a certain place. No real flagging down of cabs here, to be honest. I got Elder Hinckley his first free ride from flagging down on the roadside that he's had on mission! Nobody was going to where we were going, so I told him, "let's flag down a free ride!" Instead of taking a roundabout way, more expensive, to where we were going. So we went to a less crowded place and were walking, and I flagged a truck down to give us a ride. Nothing new for me, something new for him and here. :)

Things are good here in Ghana. It's definitely different here, but I'm slowly getting the confirmation that this is where I'm supposed to be. I miss Liberia and all my many friends there. I miss them a ton. But it's okay because this is the Lord's work, not mine, and I'll go where He wants me to go. The refiner's fire is taking me somewhere else, apparently, and that means I'll do my very best here.

Love you all so much,
Elder Price

From his letter to his new mission president:

Dear President,

These few days here in Ghana have been very exciting for me, and I feel that I have been learning a lot, not just about Ghana, but about missionary work, too. Coming to Agona with Elder Hinckley has provided a challenge of its own, but I’m excited to see the Lord’s hand in the work as we continue doing our best in this area. Agona is a very great place, and the people are receptive and ready to receive the gospel. The biggest challenge they face, however, is coming to church. The unit is not yet organized, but the members are ready, and many of them take a "tro-tro" to come to church all the way to Elmina. The building in Agona is not yet prepared for us to worship there yet, but many of the members are eagerly awaiting the church's arrival there.

My biggest difficulty over this past week has been communication. My English communicates pretty well with most Ghanaians, but many of them in Agona speak mainly Fantee. I've been working on learning Fantee, and I've been praying for help in my learning. I've seen His hand helping me to pick up Fantee; though I have not had one of those miraculous experiences of speaking in tongues, I’m seeing divine help as I’m trying to learn.

Elder Hinckley and I have been praying for miracles each and every day, and we've seen miracles in our proselyting. Starting in this (basically) untouched area, we have been trying to do the best we can to use the Lord’s time wisely. Putting faith in the Lord, we asked some of our members to show us to their friends that they have already talked to about the missionaries so that we could teach their friends. In doing so, I had one of the best days of my mission. I felt God guiding us so much, and we were able to meet a lot of new people for us to teach. The members are working with us a ton, and things are looking up for this area. I'm looking forward to a full week in this area.

Thank you for all your support,

Elder Price


Other Q&A:

How is it to work until 9pm? Is it a relief to be able to stay out longer? [they had a very strict 7pm curfew in Liberia, for safety reasons]
We have a hard time staying out until then because car business gets hard at night... It is awesome to stay out past dark, though. I love it.

Any bicycle missionaries in your mission? 
There's a few, but not many. If we ever moved apartments into agona, I would definitely campaign for a bike. We need one, but we can't take car and bike at the same time.

No more motorbike rides? 
no more... :(

Do the missionaries just take tro-tro’s like everybody else?
Yep! We all take cabs and everything like everyone else.

Any riding in back of trucks?
Probably not...

More details about the apartment?
um... no oven now, but apparently there's some funky way to make an oven out of a stovetop. 
toilets flush! :)

Is Agona considered a “new” area then? Have missionaries been there recently before you two?
a new area. No missionaries have been there full time, but missionaries have gone there for one day out of the week in the past.

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