I apologize to those following our blog. There’s been a lot going on since our last post and we haven’t had time to sit down and give an update. I guess that’s to be expected while serving the Lord. I do have some time now so I’ll give an update now.
From here on out, our post titles will be the week number that we are serving in the mission. This is not so much as to what happened this week, rather the week number that we are able to write in the blog. I’ll start out by reporting by the name of the area as we have worked in them.
The first area is Sada. We are starting to make some progress with understanding the language a little more than at first; we have picked up some Xhosa words here and there, and the English that the people speak is a little easier to understand. I guess that we are slowly being blessed in our efforts. Sister Farnsworth is teaching keyboard lessons to 7 students in this area, 4 of them are brothers or cousins who all live in the same home with their grandmother and aunt. They are all showing great progress.
In the Sada Ward, Sister Farnsworth is helping to teach in the Young Women’s, and I have been asked to home teach with the High Priest Group leader. Those in the ward who speak in Sacrament meeting and teach in the classes speak in Xhosa and use very little English. It seems to help us understand the lessons better if we can study the lessons during the week; at least it brings the spirit into our hearts and helps.
On Saturday, June 13, the young women in Sada had an activity on self-reliance. Sister Farnsworth helped with this activity. The young women were taught how to knit a scarf.
In the Illinge Ward, Sister Farnsworth is still teaching keyboard lessons. At the lesson this past week, two of her students finished all their lessons and will receive a certificates of completion. She also had a new student begin last week; so, keyboard will continue in Illinge.
I have begun teaching an English-speaking class to three members in Illinge. I have taught only two classes so far, but I see the joy in the faces of the students and the determination they have in their hearts to learn. I also can feel the Lord's spirit in the classroom. This is an experience that I didn't expect with this class. Like it has been said, “The Lord works in mysterious ways.
Both the Sada and Illinge Wards have continued to have baptisms. The gospel is growing in these areas, and I can feel the Spirit of the Lord working daily and continuing to bless the lives of the members here in South Africa.
On May 31st, we attended the Queenstown Ward. In the months which have 5 Sundays, the Queenstown Ward has the missionaries take charge of the Sacrament meeting. As a result, Sister Farnsworth gave the opening prayer and I gave a talk. It centered on Member Missionary work. I also issued a challenge to the ward members to become involved in finding referrals for the missionaries to teach. It was very well received.
Another activity we had with the Queenstown Ward was during a family home evening to which we were invited with the Elder missionaries. The family fed us dinner; then built a fire in their backyard. We allowed the fire to die down and, along with the Elders, we introduced everyone there to the art of making S’mores. They were really excited to learn this American art.
The winter weather is settling in now. We experienced a solid week of very cold temperatures. We would awaken in the mornings to Temps of 28 to 30 degrees F. The highs were ranging around 49 to 55 degrees F. This past Sunday, driving to Sada, we noticed ice had formed around the edge of some of the farm ponds near the road. Needless to say, Elder and Sister Farnsworth now have new coats.
Please remember us in your prayers and thank you for your support. Elder and Sister Farnsworth.