Monday, September 30, 2013

Mission Tour - Accra Zones

On Friday, September 13, 2013, we had our second Mission Tour conference with our 3 Zones in Accra - Tesano, Kaneshie, and Kasoa -  at the Kaneshie Stake Center.  When we drove up with Elder and Sister Vinson our missionaries were gathered outside the building waiting to greet us.


Out of respect for Elder Vinson, two of our Elders wore their suits.

Assembling in the chapel, getting ready for the conference to start.

Music is ready.

President Hill instructs our missionaries.

President Hill and Elder Vinson with final instructions.

Among other things, Elder Vinson reminded the missionaries of the principle of obedience.  He shared the story of Joshua and Kaleb, of the Old Testament, who faithfully served the Lord "for they have wholly followed the Lord." (Numbers 33:12) and were allowed to inherit the promised land. He emphasized there are great blessing for those who "wholly follow the Lord."  He encouraged the missionaries, as well, to read the Bible dictionary definition of Prayer and ponder the meaning.  Thanks, Elder Vinson, for your inspiration!

Dr. Emmanuel Abu Kissi with President Hill (above) was a guest speaker at our conference.  Dr. Kissi, the author of the book "Walking in the Sand" which chronicles the history of the church in Ghana, shared his story of conversion and challenges as the church sought acceptance.  His brother, Stephen Abu, spoke at our conference in Asamankese.  Dr. Kissi, currently the Stake Patriarch in the Kasoa Stake, has been an influential leader of the church here, including acting as the Mission President during the freeze.   He shared, that he never planned to write a book but felt like he should keep track of events surrounding the church in Ghana as they happened.   His detailed notes became the written history of the church here.  As well as the generosity he shows in medically treating our missionaries, his faithful service is an inspiration to us all.

The back cover of Dr. Kissi's book reads:
"When the priesthood was extended to blacks in 1978, faithfull followers rejoiced and a new day dawned in Ghana, and within a year 400 people were baptized, many coming from congregations that were patterned after the Church and that had operated unofficially for more than a decade.
With Church growth came persecution.  In June 1989, the Ghanaian government instituted an eighteen-month "Freeze," forcing all Church activities to cease.  The Freeze ended in 1991.  Since then the Church has grown, and a temple was dedicated in 2004.,
"Walking in the sand" a Ghanaian expression meaning "alive and well," aptly describes the Latter-day Saints in Ghana."

Photo OPS.

Photo Ops with Sister Vinson. 


What a wonderful, inspiring day!   Thanks Elder and Sister Vinson for sharing 2 wonderful days with the Ghana Accra West Mission. We are so blessed to have you serving here with us!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Mission Tour - The Bush

I'm posting here about our Mission Tour with Elder and Sister Vinson which we had last week.  For those who paid attention, I promised to get pictures up of our Open Houses, which we've been doing all over the mission in every ward.  Our Open Houses are ongoing and I'm hoping to have a few more pictures from those out in the Bush before posting - hopefully next week.

President Hill and I drove to Asamankese with Elder and Sister Vinson last Thursday for our first day of the Mission tour with all of the Elders and Senior Couples from our 2 Bush Zones - Abomosu and Asamankese.

Driving to the Bush gives a whole new meaning to "Road Trip"! :)


Apparently, the word got out that great things were happening at the chapel in Asamankese as evidenced by the cattle rushing down the road to get there, too :)  We generally see goats on our drive, not cattle!

Elders waiting in the lobby of the Asamankese Chapel.  We also had to register all of our Bush Elders for the non-resident cards during the morning of our conference.


 Getting the chapel set up before our meetings start.
Elders gathering.


  Is our music ready?
Elder and Sister Vinson with our Asamonkese Senior Couple, the Nielsons.
   Our Assistants - ready to go!

 Almost ready to go!

 READY!  Abomosu and Asamankasie, first meeting as 2 Zones! 
 We begin!
 Part of the program, a discussion about working with ward leaders.
 Mission Accomplished?!?

Below: Ghana LDS Pioneers, President and Sister Abu, from Abomosu.  As President Hill shared with the missionaries, the history of the church in Ghana is now a heritage for all of us serving  in the Ghana Accra West mission.  President Abu shared his conversion story, which occurred shortly after the 1978 revelation of the Priesthood for all men, as well as his experiences since then as a church leader in Ghana. This wonderful couple joined the church in the early days and remained strong through serious persecution during the "Freeze" in Ghana.  For a period of 18 months beginning in mid 1989, the members of the church were not allowed to meet and especially in Abomosu, a small village where the church was strong.  This wonderful man was imprisoned several times and his wife said, "I never knew when the police took him away if I would see him again."  I said, " I guess, perhaps more than any of us, you can understand what Emma went through when the Prophet, Joseph, was taken from their home."  She smiled and said, "Yes, I can!"  They are a wonderful example of faith for our missionaries!

President Abu is now serving again as a Branch President in Asoum, in the Abomosu District. The Abu's with Elder and Sister Vinson.
 Add Sister Hill (not often out from behind the camera:)

Goodbyes, as Elders get ready to return to their areas. 

A wonderful, inspiring day together with each other and Elder and Sister Vinson.

I'm planning on posting the Mission Tour in Kaneshie (Accra) later today.  Sorry, this week has been a challenge with working on a new computer, slow/intermittent internet and last minute change of plans, including this morning.  Off to an Open House in Ofankor and then hopefully, back to the computer this afternoon.  I figure if I don't get this much up now who knows when?