Akwaaba family! I think that means hi or something.! It feels really nice to email home right now. There have been tons of great stuff that I wanted to tell ya guys, but you have to wait! I'm still changing my mindset.
One of my favorite guys here. He is so cool and nice and humble. One african didn't know what the spots on my arms were. I explained they were freckles!
First of all, congrats to Joe and Mom for the new calling and the soccer team. Joe you're gonna love being with your friends again, that'll be sweet! Sounds like your back is getting better mom. Hope you guys had a safe flight and are enjoying Utah. Jacob have fun at college this week!
The MTC is way different here. I don't even think it is comparable to the Provo MTC. Very small, very basic. But it is good too. Lots of great guys around. I think it will help me adapt to the culture easier. This MTC is so unique .There are just shy of 100 missionaries, and 16 countries are represented, making this place have so many languages and cultures associated with it. There is arguably no other place on earth like this one, with so many languages and countries in such a little group. The food is pretty foreign. Mom, you'd be surprised by what I'm eating! I'm stuffing some stuff down here that'd I'd gag on at home I bet.
This was from Sunday. This is proof of how humid it is here! Brand new shirt when I put it on that morning! And I hardly went outside either. The MTC is air conditioned too. Lemme tell yah, that took some time to handwash that out of the collar.
We hand wash our clothes here too. There is only like one washer and dryer that can be used once a week, so the Africans taught us how to hand wash. Man is it a workout! Especially at night, cause it is really humid. The heat here is different too. I feel very close to the Sun. It is humid!!!
My companion is pretty good too. He's 22 and is from Kenya. We have our differences, probably due to age and culture, but we are doing good when we teach investigators. He's getting better at understanding american culture, and I'm doing better at understanding African culture.
Yesterday we went to the Temple! It was also suppose to be my P-day too. The temple was awesome. We drive through trash and poverty,, then turn a corner and BAM! we are on temple grounds. Very cool stuff. The temple is tiny! I was on the 8:30 temple session, so when I was going to leave afterwords, the van was full, so the MTC left like 5 of us there at the temple waiting for the 10:30 session to finish. In other words, I sat outside the temple for a few hours. Only bad part was that it was my P-day to do laundry and write, but I'm learning to go with the flow.
The view outside my window. Ghana is flat and jungley!
The african guys have sweet ties, so one night I went around and traded ties with a bunch of them. I only have a few ties I originally came out with. I felt bad trading with the guys who only had 3 or 4 ties, so I gave a bunch away too.
No joke the whitest guy here. My hair looks like gold in some group pictures!
Quick stats on the church around West Africa:
People dream of being a missionary here. West Africa is the fastest growing part of the church right now. On average around the world, missionaries get 1.2 baptisms. In West Africa, missionaries average over 10. Every week, a new unit is established. A unit is a bit smaller than a branch. The people are mega receptive around here, making the Gospel flourish. Can't wait to get out and teach.
The temple trip. Me and my companion Elder Mwetu
Thanks to everyone for the emails and encouragement. Have a blast in Utah! It's amazing being a missionary. I am learning a lot about the gospel and how to be a better teacher. Good luck in college Jacob! I'm stoked to see some pictures of you and your babes. Have a great week!!
Love Elder Nissinen.
Our district. A lot of fun guys! All of us except a few are going to Accra.
Probably the funniest thing I've seen yet. Guy carrying a straight up backpack on his head! Gotta love it.