Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Learning Twi

Hello Family!!

It has been a definite up and down week.  From Tuesday to Friday we have had something very interesting right by our appartment.  There was a Crusade.  Thousands and Thousands of people every one of those nights gathered in a park about a half mile from our appartment and there were preachers there and just a lot of screaming and yelling and hallelujah's... It was no bueno.  And a few of our investigators were going so that is definitely not good either.  But thankfully it got done Friday.  Unfortunately there is another one coming up the second week of November so that is going to stink..

Tuesday the AP's (assistants to the President) came to our zone and gave us a little motivational talk.  Apparently before and during the time I have been here there has been a lot of disappointment here in Techiman because the people here arent really serious about the gospel.  But their talk was amazing and they talked about a mormon message from President Hinkley's talk Titled 'You never know' So you all might want to go watch that and think about what it is talking about.  Apply what it is saying and teaching to your lives and it will make your lives better and bring more joy to your lives and eliminate some of the disappointment that will always come.  It has such a great message!

On Wednesday me and Elder Snow travelled to Kumasi to the mission home for a mid training counsel.  We took the trotro's.  Tros are like a really big van where they just cram as many people in as they can and it is not fun.  There is no leg room and it stinks and it is just a pain hahaha but it is the cheapest and fastest way around Ghana!

But if you want to know what a Ghanaian sounds like when they talk go look up Elder Edward Dube's talk.  He is from the Quorom of the 70. That is the closest to a Ghanaian I have heard.  The people here talk faster and are still harder to understand but I will tell you what, this is not a English speaking mission haha people here dont want to speak English.  They want to speak Twi.  So my Twi is coming small by small.  It has been a struggle because Twi is nothing at all like English and it is really hard to learn..

On Thursday I went on a companion exchange with one of our zone leaderss, Elder Zulu who is from South Africa!! He is so awesome!! and I had a great day teaching with him!! other than that day, this week was really really slow with teaching.. it seems like nobody we talk to is serious right now.. D and J are still progressing fine and I think they will be baptized sometime in November so I am excited for that!!
I hope everything is going good back home!! I pray for you all every day! I love you all so much!
Elder Porritt

Elder Zulu and I on our Exchange
 As you can see, our frying pan isn't doing so well.
 Pounding Fufu!!

Monday, October 19, 2015

More about Ghana

Hello from Ghana!!!
It was a quick week here. It feels like I just talked to everyone yesterday but sure enough its been a whole week.. Weird.
Anyway a little more about Ghana.
I am serving in the Dwumoh Branch and here in Techiman I think there are 5 or 6 branches but it is a huge city so me and Elder Snow have A LOT of area to cover.  The weather is basically the same every day here.  We wake up and its cloudy and smoggy, by the time we leave the appartment, its like 90 with 90-100 percent humidity so that is nice for me since i do so well in the heat... and by the time we get back to the appartment for the night the lightning and thunder is rolling in.  There hasn't been a night this whole week where we havent seen lightning so that is fun!! It makes for fun lightning watching.
There is hardly any laws for drivers here.  People drive wherever they want.  on the sidewalk, on the other side of the road if nobody else is coming, they do what they got to do.  it also seems like there is an infinite amount of taxi drivers here.  The traffic is unreal just because of how many taxis and trucks are on the road.  A lot of people also have bikes and mo-peds so they can get around all the cars.  So the taxis and the bikes riding wherever they want, you better watch out.  I have already been close to being hit by taxis twice but I am getting better at when to cross the street hahaha. 
A lot of people here have ping pong tables outside and the kids are outside all the time playing on them so Saturday I finally played ping pong again and I whooped this kid who was like 12 years old.  I was going easy on him before we started keeping score and then he said okay game to 21 so i was like okay you are on!! I beat him 21-9.  Gotta love a good game of ping pong.

Another interesting thing about Ghana is the amount of churches here.  On our road alone there is our church, and 5 others. Our road is only 1/4 mile long... If you walk down a normal street here you will most likely come across at least 5 or 6 churches.  sometimes up to 10 or so.  It seems like everyone we see is a pastor.
And OH BOY a good story about a pastor.  So Elder Snow and I were walking to a members house to have dinner and a guy in a nice truck pulled up to us and stopped us and his first words were, and I quote "You are the people who think Joseph Smith is the Savior right?"  Oh man when he said that I about fell on the ground and I didnt know how to respond because the question took me by such a surprise!!  But Elder Snow said No Jesus Christ is the Savior.  Elder Snow knows his bible very well and I believe he could bible bash with the best of them.  He was throwin out scriptures like a mad man with that pastor but eventually we just walked away.  It was quite the experience.
So the people who I am so excited about.  Our 3 new investigators.  D, J, and D.  The three of them are going to high school here in techiman.  They play basketball and they just happened to show up at Sacrament last week.  We have met with them twice but right now J has Malaria so we are hoping he gets better quickly but they are so awesome!!  They are seriously so prepared for the Gospel!!  They have accepted every challenge we have given them and they are keeping their commitments with us with reading and praying.  I really feel that they will be baptized . They are so prepared and they are accepting everything.  They love the lessons with us and want to meet all the time.  Their baptismal date is November 8th I believe and I really believe that all three of them will be ready by that time and they will be baptized!!  I love to see people who are eager to learn about the Gospel.

A highlight of this week:  2 people told me that they like the name Porritt so much that they are going to name their next son Porritt. When I heard that i laughed but Elder Snow said later that they are 100% Serious.  So hey I guess some kid in 5 years might be named Porritt!!
Well That is about it for me for the week. It was a good week and I hope all is going well for everybody back home!! I love this Gospel so much and I want you all to know that it is the Truth.  Joseph Smith restored it back onto the Earth and Thomas S. Monson is at the head right now.  He receives revelation from our Heavenly Father and We need to listen to our prophet's voice. he knows what we need!  I love you all.
Have an amazing Week!!
Elder Porritt

Elder Snow, Elder A from Ghana, me, Elder A from Ghana

A nice Ghanaian sunset with a bike-bus haha

Ping Pong

 Our Chapel

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Meet Elder Opolot from Uganda

I wanted to share this conversion story of this Young Elder in the Ghana MTC.  It's stories like this that help me understand the humble circumstances these young people grow up in.  It helps strengthen my testimony that our Heavenly Father loves every single person on earth, no matter who or where you are.  This Young Man inspires me to try to be a more loving person.

Emmanuel Opolot was born May 25, 1990 in Amuria, Uganda.  Before he was born his father died and when he was 13 his mother died.  The man she had married felt a connection to the children they had brought into this world together, but not to Emmanuel.  So he kicked Emmanuel out on the street to fend for himself.

At the time they were living in the costal village of Jinja.  For four long years, Emmanuel was homeless and foraged for food and shelter.  He would run errands for people and carry passengers from boats to the shore on his back to earn money.  By the age of 17, he had saved enough money to go to Primary school and to rent a small apartment. Of course at that age he was head and shoulders taller than all the students, but he wanted education.  At the age of 18 he finished primary school but did not have enough money to attend high school, so once again he went back to work carrying people on his shoulders.  Soon he was able to go to high school and during his 3rd year saw the missionaries, called out to them, and was taught the lessons.  He loved the message that he heard.  He said that no longer was he lonely or sad and now he had a family - his ward members.  He finished high school and a friend gave him the opportunity to learn a trade in electrical engineering where he earned a certificate.

Elder Emmanuel Opolot from Uganda, Called to Serve in the South Africa Johannesburg Mission

He was so grateful for this turn of events in his life that he wanted to pay the Lord back and so decided to serve a mission.  (He is 24 years old). Now his dream is to fulfill a honorable mission, return home and get married and raise a family.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Crazy weather in Ghana

Hello there everyone!!
One thing that has stuck out this week is the weather in Ghana.  Let me just tell you that if you think a thunderstorm in Utah is big, you need to just forget that.  Just forget it right now.  Utah thunderstorms or just normal rainstorms in general have absolutely nothing on Ghana ones.  Monday-Friday this past week I saw the 5 biggest thunderstorms of my life.  The lightning goes every 3-10 seconds for hours and hours.  It is unbelievable.  We saw the lightning strike a telephone pole a few miles away and the thunder was deafening.  And to top it all of with weather.... We were out about 5 miles away from our appartment on Friday and there was no possible way we could have made it back so we took cover but the rain just comes in sheets.  It'll drop 3 inches in 10 minutes easy.  The drain system is pretty good here luckily or else flooding would be massive.  But when we took cover from the rain, me and Elder Snow both saw it at the same time and we about died.  A funnel cloud.  I have never seen one in person so that was about the scariest thing of my life. But it was huge!!  So me and Elder Snow were panicking because to be honest a tornado would rip this whole city to shreds because nothing is built good.  Everything here is built like you would think in Africa, a tornado would destroy everything.  Thankfully when it was starting to get really really scary it started to go back up into the sky and disappeared.. So that was fun I guess haha!! Unfortunately the picture i took of the funnel was blurry...
Today has been a good P day because we went to Monkey Village which is about an hour and a half away from here in Techiman but it is just a big forest full of monkeys.  We went on the tour and i probably saw 200 monkeys.  It was the coolest thing ever!! They sold bananas and peanuts and the monkeys would come up and eat right out of your hand so I definitely was up for that!! It was a fun time.
The food here is getting better.  Fufu is theeeee best!!! I really love fufu and one of the members here makes it for us and we have been there twice already.  It is powerful food.  The soup they serve it with is basically a runny tummy creator.  But it tastes good so that is good haha!!  I dont like Wakkye though... (rice and beans)  that is pronounced wah-chay by the way.  It is another big thing here in Ghana.The food is doing okay for me.
This week I learned how important the New Testament is in missionary work and it makes total sense because what is the first four books about?? Its about the Ministry of the only perfect man to ever walk this earth.  Christ is the perfect example and he is who we need to pattern our lives after in all aspects of our life.  Also the example of the disciples is an amazing one.  They didnt know Christ but he came up to them and said "come follow me. I will make you fishers of men" and the new testament said that they 'straightway left their nets and followed him' .
We need to leave out nets and follow Christ.  Worry a little less about the worldly things that dont really matter in the grand scheme and come follow Him.  Be an example.  Do service. Love one another.  And go look at John 14:15.  That scripture is one of the best ways to pattern your life.  If you truly love Christ then it will be your priority to do as He says. 
The work has been slow this week.  Everyone here loves God and has some faith in Christ but they seem like they dont want to change the church that they go to.  They have one or two lessons with us and then we never hear from them again and wont answer their phones and that is super discouraging to me because I know that we have the truth and that we can help them gain salvation but they dont want it right now.. President Cosgrave told us that we are laying the foundation of the Gospel though which means that since the GKM (Ghana Kumasi Mission) is only 3 years old, its not a susprise that the newly opened area isnt accepting the gospel right now.  He says that most of our missions right now will be getting the word out of the gospel and leaving good impressions on the people here.  In about 10 years or maybe less, this mission will be baptizing more people than any other mission in the world.  I really believe that too.  There are 27 million people in this country.  When the fire of the gospel hits here, oh boy its gonna burn fast.  So that is how the missionary work went this week.. Hopefully this week we find the people who need the Gospel right now!!
I love you all so much and you are all in my prayers!!
Elder Porritt
Feeding the Monkeys
Laundry Day!!!  Need a pair of black socks?

Monday, October 5, 2015


3h t3 s3n?
Hola Fam!!
How are You??
Well it has been an eventful first week to say thee very least.
I have been assigned to the Techiman Zone.  Techiman is about 3 hours north of Kumasi.  And it is in the middle of nowhere because its just a bunch of bush up here but i will tell you Techiman is pretty huge.  We have done A LOT of walking because we are both new to this area and the Elders before us didnt leave a ton of discription so we are just learning it little by little.
My companion is Elder Snow from Syracuse, UT.  Gotta love the home town Utah boys roaming around.  We literally are the only white people in this city.  Its great haha!!  Anyway he is a really awesome trainer so far!  He likes sports a lot so we definitely get along.  He is going to try and walk on to USU's football team when he gets home!  He has been serving for 1 year and 1 month so he is on the downhill but he is an awesome guy and I have loved every second so far!!  He is a rubix cube master and he has taught me all the tricks and I am getting pretty good now!! 

We have walked so much that we had to stay at the appt after church because my feet were in bad shape from just getting used to my shoes.. My ankle and my arches in my feet are no bueno right now but im getting better!
We taught a few lessons but really not much has happened this week.. We had 3 people commit to come to church and 0 came.. We have committed a man named Salasi to baptism on October 1 so hopefully we can keep him going!!
We handwashed our laundry today... WOW... it was a different experience for sure.  I think im going to buy a cheap washing machine here and then use it and sell it at the end of my mission.  So that will be nice.  Elder Snow has one and it makes it easier for sure so Im getting one because even with one little washing machine we still did most the washing by hand because the machine is small and we have so much laundry haha.
Anyway I am off to see the Wizard.  We are going to go get some food.  Which reminds me... The food here isnt my fav so far.  Everything is like impossible to swallow and if you chew it it'll make you throw up sooooo haha not grand.  i have had a lot of Indomie (top ramen)
I hope you all have a great week!!
I Love you!!
Elder Porritt
Me and Elder Snow

"Laundry Day" Can you tell which one is mine?

Our DJ Piano. Looks like the power is out already.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Letter From Mission President

Dear Parent,
You son has arrived safely in the mission and has received his first assignment.  We enclose a picture of Elder Porritt with my wife and me. We are so pleased to have him in the Ghana Kumasi Mission and we appreciate your efforts in preparing him for this mission. 
His first assignment will be with Elder Snow in the Techiman zone.  We are grateful for his willingness to dedicate this time to the Lord and know he will come to love his service here.  We have taught him that he is literally the representative of Jesus Christ to the people in his area.  We have promised him that as he strives to do what the Savior would do each day, he will steadily become more like Him.
After the general training your son received in the Missionary Training Center (MTC), personal tutoring in the field begins.  The training of new missionaries is critical to the success of their mission.  Experienced missionaries are selected after much contemplation and prayer and assigned to be trainers. They are equipped with special resources to accomplish this important task.  
Thank you for sharing Elder Porritt with us.  We consider it a privilege to have the opportunity to serve with him and will delight to see him progress spiritually as he learns to love and serve our Heavenly Father's children here in Ghana.

Michael L. Cosgrave

Elder Snow & Elder Porritt 1st companionship in the Field.