May the Year End Well

Afenhyiapa – which roughly translates as, “May the year end well.”

Well, I was lucky this week because I got to hear from all of you four times if I count the letters I received and the phone call. This week I have already told you about, for the most part, but I did forget to say a few things. One thing I wanted to mention was the candy you sent me in the package – the requested Pop Rocks. I don’t know if I ever told you why I wanted Pop Rocks. The biggest reason was to give out to kids. It is a nice treat and one of the most fun things to watch. The reactions to Pop Rocks we see are great.

On Christmas Elder Jorgensen and I went to see our investigators and recent converts. I took the Pop Rocks you sent with me. We ended up at Mary and Reuben’s home. Reuben has been gone for the past few weeks on a military assignment so when we got there it was just Mary and the kids. We gave them all a pack of Pop Rocks and a few other candies. They loved it. Mary was so grateful for the gifts and she asked where we got all of this candy. I told her that it was sent to me by my family. She looked at me and said, “God bless them.” She was very grateful that we helped her children have a good Christmas. Thank you for the packages they didn’t just help me. I also received a package of beef jerky from Brant & Robin Monson. I am really enjoying the good jerky.

President Heid allowed me to call a few of my converts in Liberia. It was expensive but worth it. I got to talk to three people. The calls lasted about 5 minutes and it was twice what it cost to phone you for an hour. They are doing well. The numbers contracting Ebola have gone way down but those who have Ebola are still dying. Around 7500 have died so far as of last Monday. It was a quick call but I was able to get a branch missionary’s email so I can contact him and get more information about the people I loved working with.

For New Year’s celebration, the Ghanaian people meet in various church services to pray for peace and prosperity in the upcoming year. The different churches go crazy over the New Year. They have posters all over the place about deliverance from this year to the next. It is hard to explain. Their celebration is used as a means to remember their ancestors who are gone and also be blessed with protection from them. They also see this celebration as a chance to purify the area to allow people to go into a new year with hope. After their meetings the older people go home and the younger people go party. A lot of the people will dress in white which is a celebration color for them. Our Mission President asked all of us to be in our apartments early on New Year’s so we won’t see that.

If you are able to send a birthday package can you send some of those little foam ear plugs? There are really loud churches all around us that go all night with prayers and speaking in tongues.

Happy New Year! – Elder Orton

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