Wednesday, September 30, 2015

E-mail dated 9/29/15

Family and Friends,
Helloo everyone! I'm sorry I don't have much time today so I'm skipping straight to your questions so that I can hopefully summarize my week! Please forgive me anyone whom I can't reply to today. I love you all.

1.  Does Elder Ibe speak English?  What is his native language?  
Yes, he speaks perfect English, but his native language is Ebo (I think that's how you spell that).

2.  What do you do in the evenings since you have to be in by 7:00 pm? It is against mission rules to have investigators come to your place to be taught?
Yes, it is strictly against mission rules to have anyone who is not a missionary in the apartments. Normally we have time to study and just hang out as an apartment! 
3.  Did the baptism take place on Saturday?  
Yes, Elder Ibe and I baptized 7 people and we baptized 15 as a branch on Saturday! It was amazing! Here are the names of the 7 that I taught and baptized:
Alice Quemie
Morris Goanue
Cecelia Goanue
Mama Gbayee
Rose Belleh
Yarkpazuo Moore
Mama Moore
I have grown close to all of them and I was so happy to see them progress in the gospel. We have another baptism planned for the 10th of October and then another one on the 17th! I will keep you posted on who we get prepared.

4.  With all the people who want/need to hear the lessons, can you do a lesson with more than one investigator?
Yes, we can! We are turning our focus to teaching families now that we have narrowed down some of those that have been waiting to be baptized who have been coming to church for months. Thankfully the branch missionaries proselyte with us everyday and help us with everything!

5.  Do you meet in a church-owned building or is it rented?  Is it bigger than the ones you met in in Ghana?
We meet in a rented building and it is much nicer than the buildings I had in Dunkwa and Axim, but not as nice as the one in Nketsiakrom because that was a standard chapel that the Church had built! Very soon this branch will have it's own building with the way that it's been growing. My mission president also suspects that within the next 6 months the first stake in Liberia will open in Monrovia. I'm praying that will come to pass!

6.  About how much rain did you get this week?  Does it rain every day all day or just part of the day?  Do you get to see the sun much?
It rains every single day and we proselyte with rainboots and umbrellas most days. The sun comes out for a few hours each day though!

7.  Any mission/district/zone activities coming up?  I would assume that this would be more challenging as there are not very many of you in the mission.
I think there might be a football match coming up with a few other Elders and the branch missionaries in my branch!! I will let you know if it ends up happening.

8.  Do you know what the plans are for growing the number of missionaries?  Will this be a gradual process or will all of a sudden you get a huge influx of missionaries?  
It will be a gradual process. I will probably never see the mission exceed over 100 missionaries, but I know that in the next few transfers President Carlson is planning to open a few more zones to accommodate the arrival of those that are doing their training in Cape Coast and Accra right now and the new missionaries. I think by the end of 2015 we should have around 50 missionaries or so. 

9.  Are you healthy? :)
Yes I am perfectly healthy! Before I forget though, about the address to the mission home. Anyone who wants to send me anything needs to follow the following guidelines if you want the package to make it safely to me!
-Write a very very general description of the items inside the package.
-Do NOT declare the items to be over $50 total. Lie if you have to.
-Put pictures of Jesus on the package.
-Write "Missionary Supplies" on the side.

This is what the Hezseltine's instructed us to do!
I hope that you all have a great week and I'm sorry for the short email!
Elder Degen

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