Monday, June 24, 2013

Head aches!

Hello everyone, 

This week has been a very long week. I saw a doctor on tuesday. He has come to the conclusion that I have been having migraines. He said that it keeps getting re stimulated by different things. Lack of sleep, food, stress, my work load.... He has put me on a medication that is suppose to slowly start to take away the headaches. He told me that the next little while is going to be hard on me because this medication makes me very tired. I am now getting to sleep at night. which is great news, but the effects of the medication last all day. I feel very tired all of the time, its almost like being numb to everything around me. I hate it!! I have a hard time talking to anyone because it is hard to get my thoughts together. I have talked to sister Leavitt about how it is making me feel. She told me to keep taking it while she consults the area medical advisor. They say that it is going to take a while for it to get into my bloodstream. meanwhile I have been told to be patient. 

Well on a better note....We taught Gabbie on Friday and last night. Remember we are teaching her using Skype. She has gone home for the summer, and is preparing for Baptism. Technology is one of the most amazing things. I dont remember what I told you about Gabbie last week, but she is amazing. She is 22 yrs old. her father was a Baptist youth councillor, he passed away a few years ago, but he is the reason why Gabbie is so interested in religion. She told us last night that she knows that this is the true church. We have taught her most of the commandments. She loves all of them. She is so ready to be baptized. Gabbie lives on a little island down by St Stephen New Brunswick. There are about 800 people that live member. She found this member (Sandra)..who happens to be a less active. She invited Sandra to go to church with her. Not even a member yet and she is already strengthening the ward. She attended a ward in Machias Main. It is not in our mission. She loved every minuet of it. she is planning on coming to saint John this weekend so we will be able to teach her in person. Oh she told us a neat experience that she had while on her way to church. She said that she was on her way to pick up Sandra. She found the house (she has never met this person before) She knocked on the house a couple of times but no one answered. She talked to a couple of men that were outside. The told her that it was the house that she was looking for. She tried again, but nothing. She decided to head for church. She said that she was about 10 min away when something told her to go back. She did not even think twice about it. she said that she knew that she needed to try one more time. She went back to Sandra's house...knocked...and Sandra opened the door ready to go. AMAZING! She is so prepared. She is already seeing the Holy Ghost guide her in her life. Gabbie told us that she has not been reading the Book of Mormon as much as she could have this week...we usually get nervous when investigators tell us this, but not with Gabbie. She said that she normally tries to read 15-20 chapters a if that does not make you feel guilty, I dont know what will. her week was so busy that she only got to read about 5 chapters a day.

We attended our Zone Training on Saturday. It is always so good. We have the best leaders in this mission. I never thought that I could ever look up to and learn so much from young men...most of which are 3 years younger than me. The Elders in this mission are honest priesthood holders. They have such a strong testimony, and love for the church. I am so grateful for their hard work. I am also so grateful for them being so willing to use their priesthood. Saturday was really hard for me, so I asked my District leader (Elder West) if he would give me a blessing. I again am so thankful for the priesthood in my life! 

Oh I dont even think that I mentioned that we had a ward activity on friday. The missionaries volunteered to organize a variety show. It was a lot of work, but it turned out so great! We had several less active members come out, and we even had a couple of non members come. it was a great success. The members really appreciated it. 

So we got to watch the World Wide Leadership Broadcast last night. it was so great! I would recommend that every member 
watches it!!  

This week is going to be a great week!!!


Sister Riddle

Hope you guys have a good week!! I know I will!!!

Hey everyone how are things going?? Sounds like you guys have been having fun with your summer!!! I am supper bummed that I missed Strawberry Days, but oh well! 

Well this week has been crazy. We had a total of 22 lessons and we gave 2 baptismal dates. One for next week, Sunday (the 30th) and one for 14 July.  Right now we have a total of 5 baptismal dates, one next week and 4 on the 14th. In our weekly planning we set a goal of having 8 baptisms for our next quarter goal!! That is a freaking high goal, but I think this area is ready to accept the gospel!!!!!

So this week has been good. Everything was going well, until Sunday. Sunday we were going to have 3 people given the Holy Ghost but we only had one show up!!! I found out that one of the people that was supposed to come(Grace) was sacked from living in her house!!!! I guess the MEMBER that Grace was living with did not want her to stay with her anymore so she kicked her out!!!  I dont know where she has gone to!!   When I found this out I was not a happy camper at all! How can a member just kick a 16 year old girl out of the house.  Just thinking about it right now is making me mad!!!
So thats how my week has been. Some how good, and some how bad, but thats mission right?   

Today has been long, this morning we washed our clothes, cleaned the apartment, wrote some letters, and then went to central market, mind you central market is one of the biggest markets in Ghana We went in search of cloth! (I am having a guy make me some sweet shirts) I am so glad that I asked a member to come with us. If I didn't, I would be lost in the market right now  and would never be able to find my way out!!!   I will take pictures next week of how massive this market is! Its crazy! 

This evening we are having FHE with the member that took me in to the market (the Solomons aka the solos)  We will be watching the Work and the  Glory. I have yet to watch them since you guys have sent them to me!!

What will you guys be doing for the 4th?.... boating?
Thats all from me! Hope you guys have a good week!!  I know I will!!!

From Ghana with Love 
Elder Riddle 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Halifax....Saint John.....

Hello Everyone,

This week has been interesting. I have spent the entire week in the mission home with Sister Leavitt as my companion. Being companions with the mission presidents wife is very different. On Tuesday after I got to the mission home all of the leadership council had a meeting. Not being on the leadership council I did not feel like sitting in on this meeting, but they did let me listen from the living room. Great things are about to happen in this mission. The work is moving forward. The force is getting larger. President Leavitt is truly called and inspired by God. The mission was just approved to receive 10 more sisters before the end of the year. When I came out Sister Rust and I put the total of sisters to 10. By December we will have 34!! It is so exciting. Wednesday we got up and (all of the leadership council) went to a nursing home and sang to the residents. It was great. There are many missionaries in the mission that are very musically talented. They have made a musical concert with these missionaries, they will be traveling through the mission to perform. They made a youtube video to advertise for it. you can look it up "Canada Halifax Mission". I think it is called the Orange Blossom Train or something like that. Well wednesday I also got to attend the temple....I have not been since January..It was amazing. We attended the French session. Very neat. I went out to dinner with President and Sister Leavitt that night. I think I have learned more about what is going on in the mission in the past week than I will ever again on my mission. Thursday and Friday kind of blur together for me. I saw a doctor on friday (Dr. Fox.) On Saturday I got to go to the temple again. :) The Saint John ward and all of the missionaries came to Halifax for the ward temple trip and I was able to attend with them. I also went to work with the Halifax Sisters that evening. It was good to get out and work!!! Sunday I attend church in sackville (I think) President goes around to all of the wards in the mission to speak and that is where he was speaking. It is really neat to live with the mission president and his wife. I always knew they were busy and always have a lot going on...but I never knew what really goes on...SO MUCH WORK!!! They are great.
ok well know for the update...the doctor (Dr. Fox) thinks that I have a Vascular Headache...not really sure what that means, but he did say that it can not be treated with normal Tylenol and Advil. He gave me a medication that he thought might help, but it did not. While I was in the hospital the week before the doctor told me to go see a neurologist...they set up an appointment for me for this week. Dr Fox also thinks it would be a good idea for me to go see the neurologist. I was suppose to see him this morning, but he was sick. I have an appointment with him tomorrow. President Leavitt and Elder Clark (his assistant) drove me back to saint john (4 hours away) last night. I will stay in Saint John until I see the doctor, and then I do not know what I will be doing. 
We are also having transfers this week. We have one new sister coming in on wednesday and he is not sure where we will all be serving. He wants to figure out what is going on with me before he makes any decisions. They are taking great care of me here..dont worry about me. :) 
The work in saint john is going great. Sister Sandberg is working with Sister Hodder. She is serving a mini mission right now. She is from Halifax. She is waiting to leave on her mission to France in a couple of weeks. They are doing great things in Saint John...I wish I could join them. I would not be surprised if President Leavitt either calls you or emails you after I see the doctor. But I have no idea! Well I think that is the update for now. I wish I had more exciting things to tell you. but that is about it. 


Sister Riddle

Weeks are looking like Days!

Hey Everyone
Another week is gone!!! What???  The weeks are starting to look like
days for me. The other day I was talking to the new missionary in our
apartment (Elder Bradley) and he asked me how many phone calls home I
have left and I told him 2.  But, then I was thinking about it and I only
have one phone call left!!! What?  When did that happen?  Time is
going fast and my time is getting far spent.

The work is going fast.  We have been focusing on a few people and have
been giving them baptismal dates.  So far, we have one baptism planned
for June 30th. We also have 3 baptisms planned for July 14.  We have been blessed
with prepared people in our area. This week we have also taught two
new investigators, Joyce and Florence. Both of them are already
progressing! We have taught them both the restoration and both
understand the need for the Book of Mormon. I feel happy whenever we
get to go and see them.   So, that is the success we have been having
in our area.  But, like I always say, with every good thing there is a bad
thing about to happen. This week the "bad thing" was my companion
(Elder Helgesen from Michigan) got sick and he was down for a day and
a half. Something interesting happened when my comp was sick. I got a
phone call from one of our investigators named Nana Ama. She too was
sick and wanted us to come and give her a blessing.... my mind stopped
and all I could think about is how I could go and give this faithful
investigator  a blessing, but also how I could stay with my
companion.... I could not think of how I could do it. Then I got a
phone call from one of our young men. He and one of our other young
men (who was just given the Melchizedek priesthood three weeks ago)
wanted to come and go teach with us.  This was an answer to my
prayers! I told them both to come to our apartment so we could go on a
small split with them. I went with JR. who just received the
Melchizedek Priesthood and the other young men (Richard) stayed with
Elder Helgesen. So, I was able to go and give a blessing to Nana Ama.
It was a very good experience and helped me understand that Nana Ama
is ready for baptism!!!!

Well I hope you can understand my story with my broken English!!!!!  (:

Thats my week, I hope you all had a good one just like I had
From Ghana With Love
Elder Riddle

ps i just went to a store and found peanut butter!!!!! thats right BOOOM

Monday, June 10, 2013


Hello everyone,
I got the package!!! Thank you! Yes the Oreo's and Peanut butter made it!! :D No i did not look at the small box yet. I am patiently waiting to open it. Brother Cosman also showed me the video that he fun to see al of you! 

Well this week has been a crazy week. We found a new investigator Gabbrielle this week. She is only 22. She is a nursing student here in saint john. She is a referral from a member. When we met her for the first time she asked us what course she needed to take to be baptized. She had already done a lot of research and wants to be baptized! I think we have another Lisa on our hands! It is so exciting to see people really prepared accept the gospel. Well we will be teaching Gabbie via skype..kind of different! She is going to be in and out of saint john all summer because of her summer job. We will teach her twice this weekend while she is here and then it will be via skype until she is back up in saint john. She is going to be baptized on July 27th. 

So President Leavitt has asked each area in the mission to make a giant map of the area! Well in order to do this we have to get a transparency of the map and project it onto the wall, and then draw (trace) everything onto the wall. Well we finally got to start this big project. As we were having trouble getting the transparency made I kept thinking that my dad could print a giant map and send it to me!! I was just about to ask if I could call you when we finally got the transparency! 

Well transfers are next week. I am not sure what will happen to me, but we found out last night that Elder Prince (our district leader) is going to be transferred tomorrow. He is going to be a zone leader in Nova Scotia. There is nothing I hate more than transfers!! Always saying goodbye. It is so hard to say goodbye to missionaries. It is like saying goodbye to family. Elder Prince is going to be a great Zone Leader! Elder West is going to be our new District leader. I dont know him very well but from what I do know he seems very nice and a great missionary. We are excited to work with him. 

So I have had a hard week this week. I have had lots of headaches. Sister Leavitt wants me to go to halifax and stay with them for a few days while I see a doctor that is a member there. I will be riding up with Elder Prince and Elder Gross, they are going to a Leadership training meeting tomorrow in Halifax. Maybe they will let me sit in and learn all of their secrets?! ;)

Well we have a lot things to do today...I have to pack for 5 days..and we are going to do something fun with the elders for Elder Prince's last preparation day here in Saint John. 


Sister Riddle

Real Busy...and Transfer News

Hello everyone 

How is your week going? Mine has gone by fast we have had a good week. Nothing much has been happening but just a lot of teaching! Had a ton of lessons this week and we have given 3 baptismal dates for some time in the next month or so. Most of the people we give baptismal dates to are member referrals not people we find on our own. In fact we had 3 baptisms yesterday and all 3 were referrals. But, still members don't understand the impact they can have on the missionary work. 

On Saturday we got our transfer news...and ... I am staying in Buokrom. but, I am getting a new companion his name is Elder Helgasen (not sure on the spelling) he is from some place in the USA, I dont know where, and he just finished his training so he is still excited about missionary work and I am excited to be with him.  The funny thing about this transfer is that my companion, Elder Sharma is going to my home town - my first area - Fiapre and there he will finish his mission. So its great!  Also one of the other Elders in our apartment is training, so I am excited to see who he trains.  

Well, I dont want to tell you all of my stories by email so I am going to write you guys some letters this evening and send them tomorrow. 

Well thats about it from me, I hope you all are having a good day and I hope you have a great week. Love you all!
From Ghana with love 
Elder Riddle 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Email is Bad today

hello everyone 
hey sorry but this email is going to be short because the email is bad today...  

this week has been an OK week we have had plenty of lessons and we found some new investigators it been good, but there is opposition in everything isn't there?  the opposition this week for me was that i fell sick on Wednesday and Thursday i guess i ate some bad food or something like that, but we were not able to go and teach for those two days but dont worry i am better now i am much healthier!!!

 time is going to fast... this is my 6Th week in buokrom and next week is transfers so maybe i will get a new comp next week, we will find out on Saturday. a lot is happening this week we are planning on having 30 or so lessons this week and we are having 3 baptisms on Sunday we are staying busy and working hard. the baptisms that we are having this week are all referrals from members so its good SOME members have seen that they can help our work and they have been a big help.
well this email has taken me about an hour to write so i cant take much longer sorry its short i will try and have some letters sent your way this week!!!!
love you all 
From Ghana With Love 
Elder Riddle


Hello Everyone,
What a great week it has been! It sounds like you all had a great week full of fun. Dad I can not believe that you broke a boys thumb and made a girl sick. haha I think you are a little out of practice. :D I am sure you all had a great time! We have been working hard getting ready for Lisa's baptism most of the week.

Oh before I forget. President Leavitt has come out and said "I realize that some parents have blogs for their missionaries and others also have your facebook passwords and are updating your facebook pages with pictures and comments. I very much discourage this as it just distracts from the sacred work that we are doing....Anything that reduces our focus on our true purpose and causes us to dwell on other things should be avoided." I know that there have been a few situations here in the mission where investigators and members are getting involved and it has caused problems for many of the missionaries. I hope you all will understand the council from my mission president and not put my letters on the blog. please forward my emails to everyone. I will try to send more pictures home you can share them with anyone. Sorry, I hope you understand my desire to follow the direction of President Leavitt.
Monday we had dinner with Bishop Ross and his family. I just love this family...they are great. Mondays are always crazy. We rush to have a relaxing preparation day, then we rush to work for the three hours that we have starting at 6. I never get anything (or everything) that I needed to get done during the day to prepare for the next week. OH, Lisa got engaged!!! What a great week!!

Tuesday we had our weekly district training. Elder Prince asked if I would give a training on patience. (something I much need to learn) It was great. I learned a lot. President Leavitt came to do interviews on Tuesday. He came to the last part of our district training. Meeting with President is always an uplifting experience. I truly have developed a testimony of our leaders being called by God. I know that President Leavitt was called by God to preside over this mission. And he has called other men and women to help him run the mission. I am so grateful for the many leaders that I have!

Wednesday we had "Exchanges" with Elder Prince. well as much of an exchange as we can get. Elder Prince and Elder Dubyk come and work in our area with us one day every month. We go to lessons together and go knocking together. It is a great way for us to learn more from our leaders. Nothing too exciting happened that day. We did teach Lisa (the elders taught) more about the priesthood. Sister Sandberg and I taught the Elders investigators Peter and Tarra. I love this family! I will have to get a picture with them and send it to you!
Thursday we had service at the hospital. We go every other week to help the dementia patients bowl. We set up foam pins and give them a foam ball that they push down a ramp. Last week they made Sister Sandber and I bowl! SO FUN!! It reminds me of all the good days of working in the nursing homes! This one guy that is there was singing to us. His name is Fred. He loves to sing all of the songs from when he was young (when he can remember them) Well he was singing to me, he paused and said "how much do you love me darling?" I said "So much Fred" then he chuckles and says "you're a doll" haha so cute! Jessica is the lady that we work with at the hospital. She has started to ask us questions about what it is that we do as missionaries. Hopefully one day soon we will be able to sit down and teach her. Thursday Night Lisa had her baptismal interview. I guess it went great! Elder Prince said that he loved interviewing her. She has such a great testimony. (even though she does not realize it)
Friday...Fridays are ALWAYS crazy! We are always going from lesson to lesson...and we have to do our weekly planning. And to make things worse...we went to a lesson where the kids were sent home from school because they had lice. Well that's just great. We also had to start filling the font. (only half way..the water is so cold they told us to fill it halfway the night before to reach room temp, then to boil water the next morning.  We also had dinner with the Clayton's. Brother Clayton is in the bishoprick. They are a great family. They love sharing the gospel with friends and family. and they are always looking for ways to continue doing missionary work. They have three girls Ada (6 or 7) Mia (4) and Emma (2). Little Emma came and sat next to me while we were teaching them. The one rule that is the hardest for me to keep as a missionary is not holding children. She wanted to sit on my lap but I had to make her sit next to me. I distracted her by doing Panabitten (not sure how to spell it) She loved it and she wanted me to do it over and over again. At the end of the day we went back to our apartment....planned for the day...and checked for lice...ALL CLEAR!! oh well that's a relief! 
SATURDAY!!!! Baptism Day!! We went to the church at 8..and started boiling water...4 large pots at a time. Elder Prince and Elder Dubyk were nice enough to come and help us. They took over the boiling while we set up chairs. (can I just say, I dont think they have ever had that warm of water here in saint john for a baptism! The service was great. Sister Joanne Hoffman spoke on baptism and Elder Prince Spoke on the Holy Ghost. Then the four missionaries sang "Nearer my God to Thee" and then the baptism was performed. After Lisa got up and boar her testimony. She said that Sister Sandberg and I are her candle holders..guiding her through everything. She said that she does not feel like she has a testimony, but knows it will come over time. but then she closed by saying that this path has brought her closer to God and "This is true" She is amazing!! After the service we had to clean up. That took most of the day.
Sunday...Fast Sunday. I love church!!! I always learn so much. This was a great week because Lisa was confirmed. Bishop did the confirmation. Lisa is officially a member of the true church! This is the best feeling ever!  
I am so glad that you got to meet The Cosman's. They are great!! Sister Sandberg and I are actually going to their house for dinner tonight...their kids are making dinner for us. Lisa's baptism was amazing! I know this was one of the reasons why I am here. Seeing one person being baptized and entering into the right path pays for all of the hard times that I have had on my mission. I would gladly go through another 11 months of hard work, joy, frustration, fun, anger, and happiness, (like the last 11 months) just to see one more person be baptized! This week is going to be a hard working week..well every week is a hard working week, but this week we are focusing on finding people to teach. It is going to be great!
I LOVE LOVE LOVE you all so much!!!
Thank you in advance for the package! :D 

Sister Riddle

Sister Riddle, Victor Woodruff (sharing umbrella..its not raining) Sister Sandberg

Sister Riddle, Lisa, Sister Sandberg

Brother Clayton and Lisa