"You will be an official representative of the Church. . . . Your purpose will be to invite others to come unto Christ . . . Greater blessings and more happiness than you have yet experienced await you as you humbly and prayerfully serve the Lord in this labor of love among His children. We place our confidence in you." Thomas S. Monson

Monday, February 10, 2014

Zone Conference and the Voodoo Market

with Elders Peterson and Kunz - Love these guys!
Bonsoir mes amis!  I'm writing a bit late today because we had some pretty crazy adventures today!  Anyways, it's been a great week, and  I'll start with the big news that's come in!

So this past Saturday, we got our transfer calls from the Assistants, and the missionaries in Baguida all received some big news!  Elder Rasolo (my companion) and Elder Kunz (the other American in the apartment) are both being transferred to Benin!  That means Elder Dih and I will be staying in the apartment together.  However, we found out that we will both be training!!!  My new companion (and I was made aware that this could change) that has been assigned to work with me is Elder Dakouri from Côte d'Ivoire!  Elder Dih will be training a new French missionary, which also means that I will be the only English speaking missionary in the apartment!  AND, I have also been called to serve as District Leader!  Wow.  Peeps weren't lyin when they said it was gonna be a big transfer.  Well, I honestly don't know what to say.  I'm humbled by the jump that I have to make from junior companion to trainer and DL.  I know the Lord will support me in my weaknesses so that I may fulfill my duties and pray that I can remain a humble servant of the Lord and all those around me.

On top of all that, we had Zone Conference last Friday, and it was amazing!  The Spirit that accompanied the conference with Elder Clayton and Elder Vinson transferred right on over to our Zone Conference.  

All of the birthdays at Zone Conference!  It was different having
it at Souza instead of Kégué, but I still loved it!
Oh!  Side note: the Assistants worked with us on Thursday and stayed with us over night.  As we were driving over to Souza-Netimé, a policeman blew his whistle and pointed at us, but didn't pursue us so we kept on going.  Then, a minute later, he was on his high-tech moto blaring his siren behind us.  One thing about Togo is that ALL of the taxis have at least 7 people in them, in cars for 5. (We do it at least once a week.  It was pretty uncomfortable at first, but I'm used to it now.)  So we thought we thought, like normal, we'd be fine with 6 of us.  Well, Benin plates in Togo + 3 white people in the car = yeaahh.  Well, we got to the conference in time despite that little delay.

Anyways, the conference was phenomenal.  Everything felt like it was directed at me, and my testimony was once again strengthened on how the Spirit can work in each of us individually.  I learned many, many lessons that I am very excited to apply with the new roles that are coming my way soon!  Afterwards, we got a ride back with President and Soeur Weed to Baguida, so transport for the day was FREE!

Yesterday, we had a little visit from President and Soeur Weed at Church, which helped fortify our branch a bit, and we were able to have a good discussion together about the changes being made, which helped me as well.

Finally, today.  Elder Kunz and I spent the whole day at the grand marché again with Elder Peterson and Elder Legbanon (from Benin).  We started by looking for a backpack, a new watch, and a washboard for me, all of which was decently easy.  I brought the backpack down from about 14 dollars (7,000 CFA) to 6 (3,000 CFA) and the watch from 11 dollars (5,500 CFA) to 2 (1,000 CFA).  We then got some charwamas for lunch at Akif's, and as we were finishing eating, this American guy walked in with his French translator.  The first thing that he said to us was, "Oh my goodness.  The Mormons followed me here!"  He then proceeded to take out his camera and film his conversation with each of us asking us where we're from, etc.  He was amazed to find out that the Church is out here, but he was a super nice and friendly.  His French translator was surprisingly friendly as well.  He complimented my accent.

Another view of the grand marché from today!
My new backpack
After lunch we all went to the Voodoo market in Akodessewa.  Since Benin is the Voodoo capital of the world, all of the vendors are Beninese, so Elder Legbanon was in heaven just being able to speak Fon with them.  The market was pretty cool!  They said we had to pay 3,000 CFA for the tour ($6) and an extra 2,000 CFA ($4) to take pictures.  I paid it, and it was worth it.  There was some way cool stuff there, and we got to play with some snakes and see some chameleons.  Elder Legbanon said there's way more things like this that are better in Benin, but it was still good!  I got some good pictures of lots of dried up animals.

SNAKE!  (It's alive)
Baboon hand/foot!
Well, this week has been another amazing one!  The people out here are amazing, and there are so many who are searching for the truth and who find it in this Church and in this message.  One aspect of the mission that I absolutely love is that I get to testify every single day that I KNOW that this is true, and what is even better is the Spirit that accompanies this message.  My work here is to bring others to Jesus Christ and to help them draw closer to Him every day.  I have been so blessed to be here, and there are too many experiences to share with you to testify of how I know that these things are true.  This Church really is the one message of the whole truth that can be found on the earth today.

I love you all so much.  Have an amazing week!
Avec amour,
Elder Jenkins

First of my two pagne outfits that came on Saturday!
Second one!
With Elder Kunz

Thought these clouds looked pretty cool!

(Note from mom:  Here's the link to the interview with the American Elder Jenkins mentions above: 

HoboTraveler.com Mormons in Lome Togo 


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