Alrighty, well it's been another wonderful week! I really can't complain. As you guys know, I have been moved to Mandalay which is in Khayelitsha, and my new companion is Elder Mashigo. (Ma-she-ho) He is from Johannesburg and is one funny black kid.
In the other area we have an emeritus AP ;] (Elder Olsen) and Elder Bohn, who will probably be an AP or something someday. They are two really hard-working and good Elders, but in our area.. it is going to take a lot of work.
So basically I decided, on our first day, and as junior companion, that we should go tracting. We hit the pavement at 1 PM and tracted until 5. The issue with that was neither of us had ever been taught how to do it... but we started figuring it out by the end of that time. :] Straight up I said a prayer with my companion that we would find those who are ready. On probably our fifth house (which I had the distinct impression to go towards) we found a Father in his home sweeping the floor with his little son and playing with him. BAM. Eternal family maybe? No, eternal family DEFINITELY. So we told him that we shared a unique message about how through faith in Jesus Christ families can be together forever and that relationships with our loved ones don't have to end at death. The guy was really classy about the whole thing and had us sit down and talk to him for a bit. We left him with a pamphlet about the plan of Salvation and we are going to visit him and his WIFE (he is actually married with two kids. We couldn't believe it.) hopefully this coming week. I don't know why, but I absolutely love that guy. And his little 3 year old son was one of the happiest kids in all of Africa. SO CUTE. The guy's name is Xolani. SO PLEASE PRAY FOR HIM. If you guys saw him and felt the love God has for him like I did, you would know why I want them to have the gospel so badly. So pray for them to accept our message.
We kept tracting and found another father-led family. Him and his wife are also a young couple that has one kid though. They are MARRIED! I cannot tell you how crazy that is. Anyways, they had been taught by missionaries before and are wanting to learn more about the gospel and have a forever family. So that's another amazing story.
We then followed up on a family where only one 16 year old kid was a member. The mother, two sisters (mid twenties) and younger brother (13) had all been taught and dropped by the missionaries being lazy I think... So we talked to them and recommitted them to following in Christs footsteps and being baptized. It. Was. Amazing. Their name is the Ncuba family.
Then last of all in the tale of a hardworking weekend we went to see a lady named Thandi. Now, Thandi started dating a powerful member of the church and moved in with him. When that happened the members sort of rejected them both and he went less active. She had been investigating the church for a couple years, but the lack of love from the members turned her off. So basically we went over their to talk about their concerns. (This is something that should have been done a LONG time ago... Like a year or more ago. But the Elders were lazy and dropped her.) Anyways, we talked to them and heard their story. After hearing the story I asked her a few questions. "So Thandi, do you believe that this church God's church once again restored on the earth?" She said, "I KNOW that it is his church, and I want to follow him, but the people treated us bad and it made me loose interest." So I responded, "It's sad that you are going to give up eternal salvation, everlasting happiness, an eternity with your loved ones and a life in the presence of God all because someone treated you bad at the Lords church." She just sat there quiet for a moment and then said, "You're right. I just need to let go of this anger, but I don't know how." I testified that only in and through Christ will she be able to let go of that anger and find that forgiveness. I reminded her of God's love for her and her responsibility to act on the knowledge she has obtained. My companion whipped out Mosiah 18:10 and told her she needs to push forward and prepare to join His fold. It was POWERFUL. The less active "husband" (they still aren't married.) Zolani bore his testimony about his desire to go back and to have an eternal family. We all teared up and felt the spirit so strong. Thandi said she missed having the Elders in her home (which is nothing more than tin slates held together with some wood and a sand floor.) We are going back on Wednesday to start helping them progress and hopefully come back to church.
So yes, the area was dead... and still is pretty dead. We only taught five lessons in like four days, but it'll get better. It is just going to take lots of effort and time, but the Lord has prepared people who are SO ready to receive his word. We just need to sacrifice and work to bring it to them. I have seen and felt the Lord have an active hand in the work we are doing here. My companion on Sunday told me he has never been happier on mission and those lessons we taught together are the best lessons he has had his entire mission. I understand why that is the case though, it's because he really now is working and striving, through prayer and study, to have the spirit in the companionship so that we can help those who so desperately want to change.
Attatched below are a couple pictures from the baptism we had on the 25th. (Last Sunday)
The picture shows everyone who was baptizing and being baptized. We baptized Phelisa, Lamla and Abigale. The other Elders baptized Nkosinati and Wocumisa. So yeahh, I cannot wait for that day when we baptized FAMILIES here in Khayelitsha.
Cape Town itself is SUPER cold compared to Mdantsane. I am now in the Western Cape Province. It's really sweet here, the people are a bit more worldly and proud, but the Lord works with all kinds of people. So it'll be a good transfer.
I love you all! Thank you for the love and support that you guys give me! I miss you all loads!
Elder Mitchell Ryan Thayne