Monday, May 29, 2017

"Ik houd niet van 'Frozen' in het Nederlands."


Hello everyone! This week was just fantastic as well. It was quite a bit different because we had to fly to Trinidad for a meeting but it was amazing! For MLC (missionary leadership conference) we talked about how our individual zones were doing; typically these reports are kind of boring but this time they gave us the topic to focus on finding, teaching and baptizing.  The difference it had on us was very prevalent. When it was time for Elder Lewis and I to go up, we started to talk and I just felt a wave come over me. We started to talk and it turned into testifying about the experiences that we as a zone have all seen in the past few weeks. It was a wonderful experience, it was made even better in that everyone felt the difference from last time.

We wrapped up MLC with President Egbert closing us with a prayer, we all knelt down and as he prayed for us, we all kept feeling as if there were angels in the room, I resisted the temptation to look but I certainly felt it.

The next day, we were sitting in the mission home while we were waiting for our flight. We got kind of bored so we decided to sing and play the piano (Elder Hunt played it). It was really cool because we don't typically sing in English so it was really cool being able to sing the words and allowing them to have a deeper meaning. I love Dutch hymns but English is awesome.

Something funny, we were biking home one day when we realized that Elder White's tire had a slow leak. We had to keep jumping on and off the bikes to fill up his tire. We stopped at a fruit stand to buy some bananas, biked a bit further and then stopped to pump up his tire. A homeless man walked across the street to help us. He started to pump up Elder White's tire and then asked for some bananas, I thought it was kind of funny (we gave him some bananas).

We also got a new branch mission leader this week. A branch mission leader is essentially someone from the branch who helps the missionaries do missionary work! Before President Linger ordained him, he explained a little bit about what he'd have to do and he explained that we do all the hard work. He also said, "Ze zijn je zware bois." Bois is boys in sranan tongo.

Well, that was my week and I hope you have a fabulous rest of yours, thanks for reading!

Elder Hardy

Attached: Elder White and I in the rain (that time we actually grabbed our coats), the Ritfeld boys and their family from last week, missionary lunch and the banana happening.

Title Translation: "I do not like 'Frozen' in Dutch."

Monday, May 22, 2017

"Kunnen wij het wifi uitdoen tijdens het avondmaals dienst?" (Broeder Aikman)

Good morning everyone!

I don't why but this morning I feel super cheerful! This morning was interesting though, we had to go pick up some clothes from a tailor for another missionary and on our way to the cyber, my bike crank was being kind of weird. It was loose so we stopped, talked about it a bit and kept going and then at the point it fell off. Wonderfully enough, we were right in front of a Hindu version of a Home Depot when my crank came off! We walked inside, told them our problem (with the crank and bolt in hand) and they brought us to the back. A duo was busy working but after checking their tools real quick, they found an Alan-wrench big enough for the bolt! I tightened it with the help of Elder White and returned the tool. Surinamers are so kind!

The week was good too: Justin, Fabian and Randy got baptized on Friday and confirmed on Sunday! I would show pictures but this computer's usb ports don't work, sorry. It was awesome, after they dried off, they shared really good testimonies. They testified about God, Jesus Christ, baptism, the Book of Mormon and they talked about grateful they are. Justin said his family had been investigating for 5 years! It was awesome though, we talked to them afterwards and they just talked about how it felt as if there was a light inside of them. On Sunday, after they received the laying on of hands to receive the Holy Ghost, they had great big smiles on their faces. They were all dressed up in white shirts and ties and a ton of their family members came!

On Sunday, it was raining a lot on our way to church. I felt a little bad walking in because I was drenched and covered in mud. As I sat down I felt good, even though I was sopping wet. I glanced at the boys passing the sacrament and I thought about what the sacrament does: it cleanses us on the inside. I was very grateful that I was able to partake of it. Eventually I was able to clean off since I dried off but I remembered a verse in 1 Samuel 16:7, "for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart." I realized that we, as people, can clean "the outward vessel" but only Christ can cleanse "the inward vessel".

We also had a cool lesson with the Ritfeld family and Jerome, we started to talk about their online classes and they're taking classes from BYU. It was cool because they talked about how whenever they struggle with math or what not, they get reminded that Christ can help. Brother Ritfeld talked about the conversation with one of his teachers, "Math is just really hard." "Do you believe in Jesus Christ?" "Of course." "Do you believe Jesus knows math?" "I suppose, I don't see why not." "Exactly, he can help you." Maybe there is hope for me when I get back into school after all!

Well sorry about the lack of pictures this email, I took some but I'll send them next week!

Elder Hardy

Title Translation:

"Can we wifi out during the evening meal?" (Brother Aikman)

Monday, May 15, 2017

"Je ben aan het praat zo maar!"

Good morning everyone!

Happy (be-lated) mother's day!

I hope you were all able to do something nice for your moms but if not, you can always do something nice anyway.

This was a very interesting week for sure! Big rainy season is in full swing, it's been raining everyday off and on since Monday (at least). We've met some really cool people this week: we met a guy named Glif, he's a late night radio DJ and it was funny because he told us he saw us earlier and said to himself that he wouldn't talk to us! He was really cool, he talked to missionaries in the Netherlands when he was going through a hard time and he really liked the way we saw life on other worlds as also being God's children. We gave a Book of Mormon and a chapter to read.

Another guy we met was a Hindu man named Narine, after normal introductions, the first thing he said to us was, "Oh, Jesus has a church now? I guess it makes sense, the Catholic has a church, the EBG has a church and why not Jesus?" It was cool because even though he didn't know much about our message, he realized who's church it was.

We also had a really cool lesson with the Ritveld boys, we brought our branch president with us, President Linger. It was awesome, we talked about the Plan of Salvation and he started to go off in Sarramaccans (like Sranan Tongo). It was really cool because we were able to understand and keep the lesson flowing really well. We talked about the Pre-Earth life and about our agency (the freedom to choose) and how it was given to us as a gift from God.

We got home later and we saw our landlord and her family at their table, they then told us that their car died in the driveway! It turns out they were waiting for us to help them push it, it was pretty fun. The next day, as a reward, they gave us Roti!

Sunday was cool, aside from it being Mother's day, we had an awesome lesson in young men. Brother Aroeman was teaching about prophets and he had President Linger act as a prophet. He sent him outside to go receive his "message" from God and while he was outside, Brother Aroeman had us all pretend that we were fighting with each other and just going crazy! With a small room of young men, it was pretty hilarious. President Linger then walked in and (doing the role of a prophet) told us that he was sent of God: he then continued by stating that God wants us to love our neighbor as ourselves, not fight with each other, repent and be baptized. It was a really fun lesson but it was also a really good example of how prophets help. Brother Aroeman explained that even though there might be problems in the world, we know our purpose on earth and what we need to do and who we need to follow. President Linger then shared a scripture,
Proverbs 29:18 18 Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.

Well, that was my week, I hope you had a fantastic one as well. Have a lovely day!
Elder Hardy

Title Translation: "Je ben aan het praat zo maar!"  "You're talking like that!"

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

"Zij is echt een stille baby." *na een beetje snoepjes* "Ivy, niet op de bank en muur climben!"

Good morning everyone!

Yet another fantastic week here in good ol' Nam (Suriname). 

This week started off with Elder Fleming saying goodbye to some members so that's what spurred the title of the email. Ivy, the Aikman Family's toddler, is usually pretty chill and quiet but after she ate some kaneel stengels, (cinnamon sticks, pretty much) she was bouncing off the walls, quite literally. It was fun watching her mom try to wrangle her. 

On Wednesday, Elder White and I got put together. On our way to a meeting at the church, Elder White hit a patch of sand right in front of the church and biffed it a little bit. Right after he fell, an angry man yelled out of his car, "Go back to the Netherlands!" I turned to him, gave a thumbs up and smiled. I didn't want to burst his bubble and tell him we were actually Americans but I had a laugh about it. 

We had some awesome lessons this week; we had a lesson with the Ritveld family and it went really well. We were talking more about the Book of Mormon and the father had a questions as to why we always leave verses out of the Book of Mormon and never out of the Bible. So I asked him, if he believed the Bible was true, he said yes. I asked him how he knew it was true and he explained that it was because he had read it. I then asked him if he knew that the Book of Mormon was true, he replied that he didn't know yet. I then explained that the reason why we leave verses is because the only way to learn if it's true is by reading it. If the Book of Mormon is true then that means everything else we share is true too, it's new and that means there's more to learn about Christ, that's why we share it with everyone!  

We also had the chance to go to a baptism this week, we brought our investigator Justin. We got a ride from his uncle and it was pretty cool, his uncle has been a member for a long time so it was nice being with him. I had to give a talk about the Holy Ghost and it was really cool because as I talked, I could feel God's love for her (Kaylee, she's 8). It was a really cool experience. 

The next day was fast and testimony meeting at church and it was pretty cool. Brother Aroeman, Kaylee's uncle, bore his testimony about the baptism. At first the doors to the baptismal font were locked so when someone finally opened the doors, everyone was relieved. He liked the doors being unlocked by keys to the restoration of the priesthood authority. I thought it was really cool because they were waiting and willing to be baptized but because of outside forces, they had to wait. After that though, the baptism went fine. 

That was my week but it was awesome! I wish you all a great week too!
Elder Hardy

Title Translation: "She's usually pretty chill and quiet, *after she ate some sweets*  she was bouncing off the walls, quite literally. 

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

"Grote regen tijd!" "Ik hou van die tijd." "Waarom?" "Soms, als ik aan het fietsen ben, voel ik me dat ik eigenlijk aan het zwemmen ben!"

Good morning everyone! Sorry about this week's email, I'll have to keep it short since I'm not the best at managing my time. This week was really good, we were able to go and see a lot of cool people, we got rained on a lot too. Not much to say this week but I did take some pictures! We did get to stop by Brother Liem as well, we gave him a blessing last week and on Sunday we stopped by and his pain had completely stopped in his shoulder. He then told us how the only time it hurts is when he tries to do work, "Brother Liem," we said, "you're 94 years old, you shouldn't be working anyway!" He just laughed and said, "Yes, but I get bored!"


Elder Hardy

Title Translation:
"Great rain time!" "I love that time." "Why?" "Sometimes, if I'm cycling, I feel like I'm actually swimming!"