Saturday, January 18, 2014

A Year has gone by.....

     We have been here a year now and we have seen so much progress with the growth of the Church.  When we came there were 98 missionaries here, now there are 138.  Many new areas have been opened up, new groups, branches and districts organized.  The Stake was divided and there are plans to divide some of the wards and branches in the Stakes.  In Nkawkaw a new area was opened and a new branch organized.  The 3 branches now have their own district.  We have been a part of the Nkawkaw progress.  It has been fun to see how excited the members are to have this all take place.  The boundaries were changed and last Sunday was the first Sunday that they met in their new branches.  Some members that were in Nkawkaw 1 are now in Nkawkaw 2.  They were at their meetings without complaint.   It was really for the best.
     We had a quiet Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Of course they don't acknowledge Thanksgiving here, so it was just a regular mission day.  We did go to a restaurant and eat Thursday evening.  We had chicken and rice!  Christmas is celebrated to the fullest.  They don't really know much about Santa Clause, but there were pictures of Santa Clause on the windows and in the stores.  There were Christmas trees and decorations in the two stores that we have here to purchase.  People were buying gifts and having lots of parties.  Lots of shops were closed for the whole week.  Some celebrated until the Monday after New Years.  New Years Eve was filled with very loud fireworks all night and lots of parties.  A few Christmas hymns were sung at church.  We had a Christmas party at the Bantama Chapel for the missionaries.  Everyone came and they had a good time visiting with one another and getting caught up.  Sister Holmes prepared the chicken for the elders to barbeque and made bean salad, Elder Reiss and I made potato salad.  We used 55 lbs. of potatoes and 1 1/2 gallons of mayo among other things.  Sister Preator made the green salad and Sister Olson made the cabbage salad. Veronica cooked some rice.  We found a lady that has bakes bread and rolls close by our apartment.  We got the rolls from her and of course we had FanIce for dessert.  We decorated the tables with tinsel, ornament and candy.  Everyone had plenty to eat and had a fun time.
     The last transfer we had another 15 missionaries come and 7 went home.  It went o.k.  We are just getting the hang of handling the big groups and now our groups will be much smaller.  Cooper has been busy acquiring new apartment and getting them set up.  Seems like he is never caught up.  We have been busy trying to help in any way we can.  Time is going so fast that now it seems like we have to hurry to get some things done here before it is time for us to go home.

The Cooper Family

Missionaries going home

Some of our Christmas-Some came later

Christmas Day activity

Elder Slade and Taylor heading to the airport

New Domeabra chapel and missionary apartment

Cocoa beans drying

Asokwa District

Downtown close to Central Market

Getting ready to barbeque

Waiting for the party to start

Sisters in their new Christmas dresses

Serving up the food

Bread oven next to Nkawkaw Chapel

Nkawkaw members and missionaries

Missionaries going home

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