Monday, March 25, 2013

We don't have carpet here!

Well Hello Everyone !

This week has been a long week!!! We have been trying to get back into the work after our long trip to Kumasi last week. Its been hard this week, I am not going to lie! 

 Ruth and Jannet have been gone all week they have not been at the school where we teach them because all the teachers here are on strike! So, we were not able to see them this week. But today we have a lesson planned with Ruth and Jannet and we have given them both baptismal dates and told them to pray about it. We have not talked to Ruth yet, she was going to ask her Dad (who is a pastor) if she can be baptized. Lets just say I have been praying all this week for Ruth. I just hope she herself had the faith that her Dad would say yes.

This week we found 3 new investigators, Emmanuel, Miry, and John. We have met with Emmanuel once and he wants to learn more about how he can find out what church is true. He is a sweet man. He is about 45 and has a sweet family. He said that next time he wants us to teach his family too. Miry is a sweet lady. She is a converted Muslim and loves the gospel now. She is going to the church of  Pentecost  right now and the only thing that is holding her back from visiting our church is that we don't dance. hahahah . John is a sweet guy he is a friend to Miry and he is the reason we found Miry. John is a teacher (that is on strike) he is a sweet guy. We did not have a very long lesson with him but we are planning on seeing him soon.

Nothing much has happened this week its just been a dull week. 

Lets see, what have I done today.... I washed my clothes, I swept and moped my room (yes swept and moped, we don't have carpet here), I got my hair cut (I hate hair cuts here), and now I am emailing. Not to much has or will happen today, but that is the beauty oh Ghana.

Don't worry, I am writing you all letters. It is just going to take a long time for them to get to you because I am in Tamale, and no on ever comes up to tamale or goes down from tamale (its like we are our own mission) Hopefully we will be going down to Kumasi (again) on April 11th so maybe you will get mail in 2 or 3 months hahahah GHANA!

Well I don't have anything else to say.....

From Ghana With Love 
Elder Riddle
ps. the pictures are of our hotel room that Elder Andersen and I stayed in last week.... nasty 

Transfer News!!!! Trainer???

Hello Family!!

How is everyone doing this week? 
This week has been a fast, but really long week. Its hard to explain...time is so different on a mission. Monday was just like any other Monday. We did not really do anything fun, it was a slow day. 

Tuesday we had a couple of lessons lined up. We met with Heather (recent convert.) She is doing great. She loves the church and she loves her calling a librarian. (I would love that calling too.) We also had a lesson with Brittany  our new investigator from the week before. Brittany is about 15 so we decided that we would take one of the young women with us to her lesson. We picked up Andrea and went to Brittany's  (she lives in an apartment.) Well when we got there we could hear a lot of yelling between her and her mom. At this point Brittany has now only been home from school for about 20 minuets. We stood in the hall for a few minuets not knowing what we should do. We decided we would go back to the car and give her a call to see if we could still come over. She told us that it was not a good time, but that she still wanted to learn. We took Andrea back home. After that we talked about how much we miss our own mothers and how grateful we are for them. 

Wednesday we went on exchanges. Sister Miehe (Mia) came to Saint John with me. She is a new sister she is only 19!! So crazy to be serving with the younger sisters. Tuesday night we had dinner with a member. On Wednesday  we got to go over to the Hurtado's!! (Ester, Rosa, and Cloudia) I just love them so much!! Our lesson was on tithing and fast offerings. I am really coming to realize the things that I have taken advantage of. Like primary!! These two young girls don't know anything about the church, but they love to learn and their knowledge is growing. I don't think I have ever really realized how much children learn in primary. I am so grateful to have been able to attend primary. As well as having parents teach me by example the principle of the gospel. PS how in the world did you teach me about tithing and fast offerings? That is the first time I have been able to teach that on my mission. It went very well. 

Thursday morning we had mission correlation with Brother Cosman (ward mission leader) He always cooks us breakfast when we go. One week we had raw salmon :S bleh!!! Last week was just normal eggs and fruit. Well after Mission Correlation we had a lesson with Holly. Holly is still doing really well. She has met with the Bishop in preparation for her patriarchal and temple recommend!! It is one of the most exciting things to see someone that you are teaching progress to that. The time when they can receive those blessings for themselves! Well after Holly we had a lunch appointment (yes only about and hour after we had breakfast. We went to Sister Crilley's. She is the new Relief Society President.
I don't know if I have told you about "Bird Finding"? haha well we go to this park to contact people. We feed the little birds and squirrel's and talk to everyone that is there. It is pretty fun!! Well thats what Sister Miehe and I decided to do on Thursday afternoon. We exchanged back that night. favorite day..not really...Fridays are the longest days of the week!! Weekly Planning!!! We lunch...plan...plan..oh and plan some more. It is really hard to sit in an office for that long...PS, I will never have a desk job. Planning is the most important part of this work. Without it we can not accomplish anything!! 

Saturday!! Just the day I could not wait to get to!!! TRANSFER NEWS!!!! Well President has called me to stay in Saint John and train a new sister that will be coming out this week. I am supper excited...supper scared/nervous. I have learned so much in the past couple of transfers!! I am excited to continue learning!!

Sunday came and went...the fastest day of the week!!! I wish it was the longest!! I love church! 

Well I had better get going!!! 


Hope you all have a great week!!!!!!


Monday, March 18, 2013

Saturday is a special (or scary) day!!

Again...another week come and gone....

What a crazy and exciting week this has been! We said goodbye to one of the dear Elder's we have been working with.  We found new investigators and now we are preparing for transfers this Saturday. 

This week had a goal set by our zone leader to have 4 new investigators, which I think to me I had a hard time expecting it to come to pass just because of the past three weeks... I know that i have been trying to build my faith in this area but it has been a bit difficult....It is hard to explain. I think I had the faith that it would happen but expecting it every single day was a bit difficult for me. 

Tuesday we had district meeting with the Elders and the Sister's in Hampton. We focused on finding and I think that that definitely helped us in many ways. Sadly we then had to say goodbye to Elder Moore.We were excited for the new adventure that he would be going on but hard to say goodbye and continue on at the same time. I think that is the worst part of the mission....Saying goodbye to the friends and family that you make on your mission. I have come to love everyone that I have worked with and have served around. Some are truly my best friends and nothing can or will change that because we have all gone through similar things that we are able to help each other through. What a blessing my mission has been to my life. 
I read a talk by President Utchdorf this morning and I loved what he said and now I would like to share it with you...              “Once upon a time” promises something: a story of adventure and romance, a story of princesses and princes. It may include tales of courage, hope, and everlasting love. In many of these stories, nice overcomes mean and good overcomes evil. But perhaps most of all, I love it when we turn to the last page and our eyes reach the final lines and we see the enchanting words “And they lived happily ever after.”

So this is what I would like to start my email with is Once upon a time..... Once upon a time I was preparing to go on a mission, not knowing what would come of my experience or how my life would go... As I have gone these 8 months away in this amazing place of Atlantic Canada....What an amazing place to build a relationship with my Heavenly Father and my Savior Jesus Christ....I have come closer to both of them as I have had to rely on them for everything, literally everything. Yes my family is always there for me but being in Newfoundland and New Brunswick I have had to come to understand and do things on my own. It is amazing that I am able to go and share the gospel with complete strangers and love my life, be called every name and love my life, feel totally alone and love my life. All of this is possible because I have a loving Heavenly Father and a Savior who love and watch out for each of us every single day. As we are on this journey of Once upon a time we come across trials but then we also come upon great blessings and experiences.... 

We had gone to Holly's and asked about her neighbors, we thought we could work in her area while we were there. She told us about her neighbor Rick. He is a dad of 3 and is married. Well when we went to contact him, he was the only one at home so we weren't able to go inside. As we talked with him we found out that his grandfather was in the hospital and wasn't doing the best. We started to teach the plan of salvation and about the Book of Mormon. He expressed that he is going through a difficult time and would like to learn more but would like us to come back when his family was home. We set up a return appointment for Sunday (yesterday). We went and once we had gotten there he had a bunch of company over and had a lot on his mind so he asked if we would be able to come back another time. We said yes but yes we are excited to start teaching him and his family. 

The weather has been up and down and all around this week! We have had beautiful sun shining days of 5-8 degrees, rain storms where you get soaked and then sunny but freezing -12 degree days! (we even went running in this cold freezing weather..I would not recommend it.) The snow is almost all the way gone now!! But we just found out that we are getting another storm tomorrow night...not sure what kind..rain or snow...either way I HATE IT!!

Friday we had gotten a call from  our district leader.... He had said that our mission president had asked that he work in our area to try and help us find new investigators and try to jump start our area... We did work with them. We each had asked to "receive a referral from God" aka picking a street to knock. As we did I tried to understand more of how this would help us when we really can't go with them to work. So we had our streets and we went. We decided that we weren't going to drive and we would knock to the street we picked so that we could be out of the car as much as possible talking to people along the way. We got to the street and had prayed right before we went. We saw an apartment building and we were going to skip it at the beginning but then I said "No, let's do it first." We decided to start at the top floor. We prayed that we would be led to those who were willing to receive the gospel. The first door we knocked on a teenage girl answered the door. Her name is Brittney. We asked if her mom was home because we knew that we couldn't teach her without her mother's permission. Her mom came to the door and we started to teach them about the gospel. We asked if we could come in and share more of this message with her, she said that she wasn't interested but then we see Brittney coming behind her and listening and she said "I want to learn more!" We asked her mother if we could teach she said sure... We taught the Restoration as we were standing at the door. She looked so excited and interested in the things that we were saying. As we finished we asked her "Why are you so interested in learning more?" She said "I know that there is more out there." Brittney is not baptized in any church but she goes to a youth group every Friday night to play games. We asked if we could come back and teach her more and Brittney asked her mom and she said "Whatever." So we are going to see her tomorrow. We left her with a Book of Mormon. She is so great and interested. Her face was just filled with excitement. As we left we could hear Brittney saying to her mom...."I really like them." We are concerned that her mother will hold her back but with faith in the Lord everything is possible. 

We saw Ester, Rosa and Claudia! It was a great lesson. We had planned to teach about repentance as we started teaching we just felt like we should continue so we finished the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Rosa expressed her desire to be baptized. She is turning 8 on Friday so she has reached the age that we can. Now we just have to help the family come to church more regularly and continue to work with the ward in helping this amazing family. 

Saturday night we went to visit a former investigator, but sadly they weren't home. We didn't have time to knock the whole street so we decided that we would pick a few houses that stood out to us and we would knock them. We picked about 3 and the last house we went to it was an lady named Lori. She has a degree in special education and also is a principle at a high school and is baptist. As we talked with her she expressed that she wasn't interested we asked if we could leave her a card to our website...As she looked at the card she said "Would it be okay if I share this website with my high school students... They are in that time of their lives when they aren't sure what to do and how to go through some things." We said of course you can we would love to give you a handful of cards that you can give to them. It was so great! Even though we didn't find anyone interested or prepared to receive the gospel at this time I know that one day, those high school students or even she will be ready. It was an amazing thing that had happened.

Sunday is just such a great day as a missionary. I love going to partake of the sacrament and renewing my covenants.  

Now back to our once upon a time story.....
You need to know that you will experience your own adversity. None is exempt. You will suffer, be tempted, and make mistakes. You will learn for yourself what every heroine has learned: through overcoming challenges come growth and strength.

It is your reaction to adversity, not the adversity itself, that determines how your life’s story will develop.

There are those among you who, although young, have already suffered a full measure of grief and sorrow. My heart is filled with compassion and love for you. How dear you are to the Church. How beloved you are of your Heavenly Father. Though it may seem that you are alone, angels attend you. Though you may feel that no one can understand the depth of your despair, our Savior, Jesus Christ, understands. He suffered more than we can possibly imagine, and He did it for us; He did it for you. You are not alone.

Enduring adversity is not the only thing you must do to experience a happy life. Let me repeat: how you react to adversity and temptation is a critical factor in whether or not you arrive at your own “happily ever after.”

We all search for happiness, and we all try to find our own “happily ever after.” The truth is, God knows how to get there! And He has created a map for you; He knows the way. He is your beloved Heavenly Father, who seeks your good, your happiness. He desires with all the love of a perfect and pure Father that you reach your supernal destination. The map is available to all. It gives explicit directions of what to do and where to go to everyone who is striving to come unto Christ and “stand as [a witness] of God at all times and in all things, and in all places.”  All you have to do is trust your Heavenly Father. Trust Him enough to follow His plan.

We all have a great deal to do in this life. A great plan that is before us but we don't have to do this alone. We have a loving Heavenly Father and Savior who have a plan and a road map for us.... May we strive to follow them in all that we do. 

This week we will be going on exchanges on Wednesday to Thursday! We also have transfer news on Saturday....It will be interesting to see what happens! I am getting a little nervous for that. 

I was telling mom earlier that I never thought that I would love this work the way that I do. There is nothing else that I would rather be doing. Sister Davis and I have been talking about where we would be if we chose not to serve. I know that I would not be (spiritually) where I am now. I know that there are good, better and best decisions to be made about everything, and this was the best decision I made!!

I hope you all have a great week!!!!!!



Ice in New Brunswick

Canadian Bowling

Sister Davis And Rachele


Elder Prince and Elder Moore

Sister Levitt taught them Tai Chi

New Brunswick

Spelling out "CHM" Canada Halifax Mission

Elder Moore and Elder Prince with a Big piece of ice!

Out Knocking on doors while skating!

Snow drift in fron of apartment

More New Brunswick

Sisters Conference shirt. It says "When all else fails,
send in the Sisters"

Stinky Pulp Mill

How you "Tan" In Canada

Rosa and Claudia Hurtado

The Trio!

Kumasi Trip

Hello everyone! How was everything this week? I hope what ever you are doing this week (work, school, being pregnant, learning in the mtc, hanging out in Canada or Hong Kong, or just hanging out at the house) whatever it may be I hope you enjoy it!!!!

This week has been long!!!  We only had Tuesday and Wednesday to teach people and even that was not good we only taught 3 lessons this week.... thats bad!!!  
On Thursday, Friday and Saturday we were in Kumasi for our Mission Tour which was great by the way. Elder Dickson talked to us about how we can strengthen the church both while on our missions and when we get home. He said the place it needs to start is family prayer. If we can get our converts to pray with there families they will be stronger in the gospel. And he said we need to have family prayer with our future families when we get home and have our own families... I thought it was a very good topic from him. 
Well, on Saturday as we were leaving Kumasi we got stuck in traffic. As we started heading thru traffic we got to a point where traffic was at a slow crawl, down a hill and as we were heading down this hill people on the side of the road started yelling at us and telling us to get off the road. As we are looking at the people we all noticed why the people were yelling at us... a semi truck (at the top of the hill) lost his brakes and was coming right at us. BUT, problem.... we are in traffic and can’t move! So, the semi hit us right in the back of the mission van.  Ha it was kind of scary and I thought Ii was going to die because of the speed at which the truck was coming at us, but when we finally pulled over off the road and looked at the damage there was only a small scratch and 2 broken tail lights. No one was hurt and the car was still drivable.  Miracle? I think so!   Anyway, everything turned out all right. The only real problem was it is now around 4:00 and we still have to take a 7 hour journey to Tamale. hmmmm....  so we start our long trek  and about half way Elder Dadzie Gets tired so he calls President Holmes. President Holmes tells him to stop driving and find a hotel....   hotel hahah right!!!  Well we found one.... some how..... it was a step below a hole in a wall. The first thing I said when I walked in to our room was "Crap I am Going to Die"   hahahah Think of the worst hotel you have ever been in and times it by 10 and you get our hotel... it was nasty. Needless to say, I got no sleep because I thought I was going to die!!!!!!

Well thats our Kumasi trip for you. I know it makes you want to come to Ghana doesn't it!!!

Well nothing really big planned this week, just a lot of teaching because we were not able to see our instigators last week. Although, one of the companion ships is having the first baptism in Tamale. I don’t know how they are going to do it because we don’t have a font. We might have to go find a lake or a swimming pool. That should be interesting!!!

hmmm I think that is everything that I can think of for this week 

Let me know what you guys are doing this week. 
From Ghana With Love 
Elder Riddle 
ps pictures of the hotel will come next week 

Monday, March 11, 2013

"Hot Tamale"

Well hello From Freaking Hot Tamale
This week has been a VERY long week. All but 5 of our lessons this
week failed. It was not a good week at all because the only thing Elder
Roach and I did was we walked around and talked to people about the
church (Mostly Muslims) This week it has been right around 40
degrees Cel.  (about 104 far.) that's HOT!  So it has been miserable
walking around contacting. Its painful sometimes. But, this week we have
contacted 5 people that might become new investigators so just like the
song says "sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven" its so

OK the best part of the email is going to be this part because of one
Today for our pday activity we went to a place called Mole National
Park. We got up around 5:30, left tamale around 6:00 AND traveled 
3 hours on a crappy road, paid 120 Cedis to get into the park, drove 
to the visitors information place where we HAD to hire a tour guide 
for 35 Cedis an hour (the tour guide had a gun just in case an animal 
attacked us), drove around for about 20 min found some
baboons and warthogs, drove about another 20 min and found a herd
of elephants swimming in a small pond!!!!!?????    
What??? Elephants??? So we did what any 20-25 year old men would 
do we got out of the car to take some pictures.....  so as 
we were taking pictures everything was fine... we were cool,
the elephants were cool, the guy with the gun was cool,
everything was going good. After taking pictures we saw another
herd of elephants so we started walking over to take pictures of
them as well. I guess when we started moving it startled one
of the elephants and he started running towards us. All 
our tour guide said was "run a way!!!!"  so all of us (except the 
tour guide) start running away, but the tour guide stands there with 
the gun pointed at the elephant and the elephant stopped running at us.  
It was the COOLEST thing that has ever happened to me!!! And the 
way the guide just stood his ground he was not scared of anything!!!
(I think he would have shot the elephant if it came any closer, but 
I also think he only had one bullet  ha) so ya thats my Elephant Story!!! 
I hope you can understand it, I can't remember how to write complete sentences!

We are also having a mission tour this week end. We will be traveling
down to Kumasi (by bus almost 8 hours) on Thursday morning having 
our meetings on Friday and coming home Saturday morning (by bus) 
its going to be a long trip. I am going to die!

Oh ya, I got my birthday package. Thank you so much. I am 
enjoying the sanuk's and the race cars!!!!

Well I think that is all I have this week. I love you all and I hope 
you have a great week!

From Ghana With Love
Elder Riddle

ps. ELEPHANTS!!!!!!

Another week gone.....

Hello everyone!!! What a week it has been! We have tried to spend most of this week finding people to teach. 
Last Monday we were able to spend the preparation day going bowling for one of Elder Moore's final p-days. It was fun. The sister's from Hampton came down to go with us. Today we are going for his last p-day...we aren't sure what we are going to do but we shall see. 

Tuesday we went tracting and the first door we knocked on was a Chinese family. Shirley was the mom and she has two kids. She was so excited to learn more about church because in China they aren't able to worship freely. It was really fun then on Tuesday night we went on Exchanges. Sister Davis went to Hampton with the new Sister. Sister Miehe, then Sister Rust and I were here in Saint John.  

We saw Crystal and Mike...We taught the Word of Wisdom it went really well. There wasn't ten kids there at the lesson so it was good....Not to much to say about that...

Friday President Leavitt came to visit and have interviews with each of us...It was good. The last time I had an interview was in August so that was good. He actually told me a bit about the next transfers which will happen at the end of March...That isn't for sure but I won't say what will actually happen. 

Sorry this email is short we really haven't had a exciting week again. I will send a longer email next week with pictures from the last couple of weeks.

I hope you all have a great week! 


Love, Rachele

Monday, March 4, 2013

8 Months in the Canada Halifax Mission !!

Hello everyone!!

I know I say it every week....where does the time go? Another week..gone! I have been out for 8 months this week?! weird!!! So I would like to write and tell you that the sun is out and there is no snow...but that would be a lie. How great it is to be living in this "snow globe" march!!! Who would have thought there would still be a winter snow storm here in march? I thought March was know jacket weather..not grass...soon to be flowers?! I cant wait to see that...If I ever see it!!!  

Wow! Sounds like so much is going on at home! That is so exciting that Jake got his call. And the new babies in the family!!! FUN!! 

This week has been a slow week. Last Monday we went on an adventure. We went to the closest "beach." Not sure if you can really call it that if there is no warm sun!! haha but we did have fun. We are going bowling again this week. Should be fun as well! I will send pictures when I have more time to upload them. 

Well the work is really slow. We still have no investigators here. We have a few potentials that we have to follow up with. We have been doing a lot of contacting referrals and visiting with less actives. I know that there are people here that are prepared to hear the gospel. Its my job to have the faith to find and teach them. President Leavitt is visiting all of the missionaries this week. He will be in Saint John on Friday. He has talked about how the work is hastening and we need to work harder. He is right. There is a greater urgency in the work that we do. I realize that I need to have more focus and more diligence.

This week we taught Ester, Rosa and Cloudia again. We taught the girls about faith. we gave them seeds to plant (I hope they grow!!) THEY CAME TO CHURCH! So fun! The girls loved it. Ester and her husband, Claudio, seemed to enjoy it as well. Now they just need to keep coming! 

We also saw Brendan and Heather again. Oh I dont even know what to say about them. Heather is a recent convert. She was baptized last fall I think. She is doing amazing. She just got a calling at church. She is the new librarian, she says she loves it. Brendan, is still Brendan. He has come a long way.He says he has a lot to learn. 

Like Bobby, I also got sick this week. Probably not as bad as he did. I got a cold on Friday and it hit me hard on Saturday so I was out for a couple of days. There is nothing that I hate more than being sick when there is so much work that I should be doing. 

I got the package that you sent me! Thank you!! And thank you in advance for the glasses!! :D I can not think of anything else that I need! THANK YOU!!

I can not think of anything else exciting to tell you about!


I want to thank you all for your prayers and support. It makes the work here a lot easier when I know I have family at home supporting what I do! Miss you.


YES!!!! No Malaria...

Hello Everyone!
Well it's been a long week. Last Monday I started feeling sick, the same
on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. For those 4 days I was not able
to go out and teach because I was so sick. And honestly, I thought it
was malaria which would have not been good at all, but it turned out
to be some bad food that I ate. Probably banku, fufu, or fried rice.
Friday I started feeling a lot better. (good thing to because it
was my birthday) I was able to go out and see some people. For my
birthday, I did not do much. The only good food that I ate was fan ice
which is like ice cream. But, when I got back to the house that evening
there were 6 elders waiting with 6 buckets of water. Yup, they soaked
me! Happy Birthday Elder Riddle! Saturday we taught Ruth we were going
to give her a baptismal date, but our lesson was interrupted by one of
the teachers at her school ( they go to boarding schools here and live
on school grounds) so we were not able to give her a date. Yesterday
nothing to much happened but while we were walking to the house last
night we got soaked again but this time it was rain (the first rain
storm of this year)  it was crazy but felt so good!!

hmm what else has happened... today I had something interesting happen
to me.... as we were walking thru town a little girl came up to me and
just held on to my hand and would not let go. I had seen this girl
about a week ago and she was begging for food/money. So today she saw
me again and just would not let me go, so I gave her the change in my
pocket, which was maybe 80 peswes (maybe 40 cents) and she
walked a way. It hurts me to see these street children, they are
everywhere in Ghana and there is no way anyone can help them all. It
its just sad to see them. There is also a story from last general
conference a talk by Elder Gay and he talks about one of these
children. (he was the Accra mission president about 9 or 10 years ago)
its just sad.

Well in about 2 weeks we are going down to kumasi for a mission tour,
Elder Dickson is coming to talk to all the missionaries. It should be
good, he is a powerful speaker.
Well thats all I have this week, I love you all hope everyone is doing well
From Ghana With Love
Elder Riddle