Monday, October 27, 2014

October 27, 2014 - Bangalore Pictures

Sister Shoba taking the Elders to all-you-can-eat dinner.
Elder Bunga, Daniel, Elder Basil

Elder Ball, Stephen, Cedrick, Elder Bunga
Cedrick, Tresor, Stephen, the Congo boys 

October 27, 2014 - Bangalore

Hello everyone!
This week was a very good week for us.  We had a lot of teaching opportunities this week and had a good time.  We didn't have power for three days this week because i guess the financial office elder didn't pay the bill so we were roughing it for a few days;) 

This week we went to a member's house.  His name is Brother Suresh Chinnapa.  He has a sister whose husband is a non-member and while we were meeting with Suresh and his sisters, we learned that that husband wants to take lessons from us after he finishes his big project with his job and then wants to take, finish the lessons and get baptized in our church in December or January! So that was really cool for us and we didn't even do anything.  His family was just a great example to him so we are grateful for that.  

This week was also found out that a couple that some Elders in our zone are teaching are actually in our area and they have committed them to baptism, so we just have to continue/finish teaching them and set a date and then baptize! So that is really great also! It was nice to get a couple gifts from God after we have been working so hard but haven't had success in terms of baptism.  That is the thing with us though.  Our companionship keeps reminding ourselves not to get discouraged about not having baptisms because we are doing our part by inviting others to come unto christ and just introducing them to christ.  Plus others have their agency and as long as we work hard, we can be satisfied with the results.  

This week was Diwali festival in India.  It is a Hindu holiday and they celebrate it pretty much the way we celebrate the 4th of July.  They set of lots of fireworks and fire crackers but they do it for three+ days and they do it all night and it is so loud.  So because of this festival, we had to be in by 6 on wednesday and thursday.  

Our African investigators haven't been able to read the book of mormon much this week because they were all having exams so they didn't make much progress but they are still very much interested.  Except for Yona, sadly he has been bunking our appointments and making up excuses not to see us so we might leave him alone for a little while.  So that was a little disappointing.  As far as Vincent David goes, we aren't allowed to visit him for one month so we will probably visit him in his rehab after that time period, but we are still teaching his wife and daughter, and we may be able to baptize his wife in a couple weeks if she is still willing.  His daughter just had a baby boy this week so we are really looking forward to seeing this new born baby! 

This week a member named Sister Shoba took us out to eat at a really nice place called Barbecue Nation, and it is an all you can eat place so we ate so much! It was really fun and she is the one in the pictures at the restaurant that i uploaded.  The other Elders were with us and the other guy is Shoba's nephew who is one of our investigators named Daniel.  

On Sunday we had a really good day.  We only had one investigator at church though which sucked.  But we went to Cedrick's house and taught him and Stephen.  They are the Africans in the pictures.  Cedrick is the one right next to me.  We taught them about the Straight and Narrow path being through Jesus Christ and read some of Matthew 7.  It went really well and those guys are so awesome.  Sister Reshmi is still reading the Book of Mormon everyday which is so great!!!! 

So after our really good PEC meeting last week, and after Elder Bunga and I told them the members aren't reading the Book of Mormon and how that is a problem, the presidency agreed and is going to buy every family a big book of mormon and challenge everyone to read it by December 31! It is such a great plan and i think it will really increase the branch's faith and especially help us missionaries out.  

Please tell all of our family members how much i appreciate them and their prayers.  And give Tyler lots of hugs and kisses from me okay?  That is cool for Mrs. Kearns' husband! He is a really cool guy.  Yeah you better watch some BSU games!  I'm glad Asher and Josh and doing good! Speaking of my friends, please tell Beth to have Aaron email me sometime.  I want to know how he is doing.  I worry about him.  So the people like music, but to be quite honest, they are bad at singing and keeping tempo.  It is so hard to play the piano for them in sacrament haha. It is kind of funny.  

Dad i hope your trip was/is good and that you are safe.  It disappointed me to see such a weak email from you though;) haha and you better step up your game as far as SC updates go because all i got this week was that BYU got whooped haha.  jk i understand.  Yeah it has been three months! crazy! It is weird though because it seems like it has gone fast but also it seems like i still have so long... haha. 

Well this might be my last full week with Elder Bunga because transfer calls are happening this week and possibly today.  So we will see what happens. Anyways so last week i forgot the scripture so sorry! i will give multiple this week: Omni 1:26, Mosiah 3:17, Alma 5:14-16,19,27-28; Alma 7:11-12  Sorry about that!

Well great week for me! Hope you guys have a great week this week as well. I love you guys so much and appreciate all of your love, support and prayers. Until next week!

Elder Ball

Monday, October 20, 2014

October 20, 2014 - Bangalore

Well, a pretty decent week.  It was kind of a weird week because everyone in the apartment except for me got sick this week so our numbers were down this week but overall, it was still a pretty decent week.  

Tresor is really improving in his English so that is great because then we can take him more on some exchanges with us.  On Tuesday, we taught Christian and Stephen and it went really well.  If we could just get Christian to church, we could easily get him to accept baptism.  Stephen is a little harder to teach, but he is still a nice guy and we are still working on him.  

So a disappointing thing this week was Vincent David....So we didn't visit him for about four days and so on Friday we went to his house to visit him and found out that all four days he drank and smoked....It was so devastating and then he said the reason he did those things was because we didn't visit him.  So basically we found out that the only reason he doesn't do those things sometimes is for us.  So he isn't trying to change for himself.  So that was kind of upsetting...And then to top it off, on Saturday night, we called his daughter to see how he is doing and found out that his family admitted him in rehab for 5 that was a bummer.  But we will still visit his wife and daughter and occaisionally him in rehab.  

On Saturday we got a training from President Berrett...he was telling us that we have 192 more baptisms to go in Bangalore to make it a stake so that we need to work really hard and as obediently as possible to achieve that.  We also had a missionary/member fireside on saturday where we helped some members get excited about sharing the gospel and helping us missionaries.  We helped them learn how to introduce the gospel in simple, non-threatening ways.  It was a pretty good activity.  We did role plays with them just like we do as missionaries haha.  

On Sunday Brother Pidugu, who is a non-member came to church.  It was great and he said if we don't pressure him, he will take baptism when he is ready so that was great.  We also had a great lesson with him and his family that night.  Also a really good PEC meeting where Elder Bunga and I found that our hard work is paying off because the members and especially the aux leaders and branch president is on our side and willing to help and live with our results.  That was really comforting.  
So not much to tell this week sorry!

So are easily the best mom in the whole world and nobody can tell me otherwise...the package was way beyond anything i expected.  I cannot thank you enough! I have already broken into the candy and i gave Elder Bunga his bottle and bag.  He loves them.  I love the stress relievers and the pictures and book markers and the talks, oh and the socks with a picture of a crippled guy on them;) haha (KD) just kidding, the socks are so sick!  Thank you so much Mom!!! You are the best.  I definitely am blessed with parents far beyond that i deserve.  You both are so amazing.  So yes please try the biriyani.  It probably won't be as good there as in India but still good;) Sounds like Kiehl is awesome just as i expected...

Answers: Weather the last few weeks has been super hot in the day times and then pouring rain at night.  You guys have no clue what rain is until you come to india and find sheets of rain and floods every night haha.  It is crazy.  You take one step outside and immediately are drenched.  The most spiritual thing this week was probably just reading the book of mormon like always.  I read so many good things.  Since my call i have already read it twice and i am on pace to finish it again before the end of november.  it is sooooo dang good and the most important thing to read.  Most gross was probably seeing a bunch of guys who dress up in sarees (what girls wear) and they act like girls and are gay.  They are so weird and when they see a white guy, they all try to talk to me and flirt and stuff and it is so weird and freaks me out hahaha. The most fun was probably just being with Elder Bunga.

Dad: I hope you are safe this week in Cali. I'll be praying for you just like i always do.  And yeah we have 12 week training haha.  Play some ball with Kody and Carl, haha that would be them how to ball! I will ask about that book.  Great sports center update! BSU may be improving huh? Giants going downhill again? Who is really good in the NFL??? Go Mountain View! The experimental NBA thing is weird, but may work actually.  The ROYALS????? What the heck? who made the playoffs this year in the MLB? If D-rose is healthy, it will probably be the bulls and cavs in the east...and hopefully Westbrook can keep OKC afloat until mah boi returns.  I love you too dad. You are the best dad i can ask for.  And hopefully one day i can become as great of a dad and as faithful as you are.

Well love you and miss you all! Hope you have a great week! 
Elder Ball

Monday, October 13, 2014

October 13, 2014 - Bangalore Pictures

Bunny, Pidugu boy 

October 13, 2014 - Bangalore

Well a much better week this week.  I was so heart-broken about Vincent David and Kishore. A mission is super hard, especially a mission in India. By far the hardest thing i have ever done.  But i keep thinking that after doing this, other things will probably seem a lot easier. I am taking it one day at a time.  But I am actually doing really well this week.

So on Monday, we went to a family named Pidugu and we had family home evening there.  Because they have been struggling lately financially and have money for food, we made pasta and because they wanted veg things and we had no idea what else to bring, we brought Dominoes lol.  But we had so much fun at FHE playing games and eating and then having a lesson that i was able to give about the foundation of the church being on prophets and Christ as the chief cornerstone and how we get to listen to the prophet and church leaders talk about Christ this weekend.  It was such a great night.  On Tuesday after district meeting, for lunch, we went to Pizza Hut and had unlimited pizza and that was really good.  I ate so much though.  We were able to teach Cedrick's friend Christian again this week too and we taught him about 3 Nephi 11 and he understood really well and is making some good progress.

This week we also began teaching Tresor English. It is so hard to teach English haha.  It was funny too because we were going so basic that we were drawing pictures on the board and labeling them and asking him what they were and how to say them.  It was kind of funny and fun but very difficult.  He is already getting better though, so i think our classes are helping him.  We taught Yona this week but he seems to be slowing his progress but his interest is increasing a little bit more again.  So something funny also is this lady named Chantee texted us the other morning and told she wants us to come see her because she has been having bad dreams lately....and that someone did "Black Magic" on her so she was feeling sick and was scared.  So we went over to house and talked to her a little bit and then i gave her a blessing and while i was giving it, her head was shaking.  It was kind of a weird experience.  

We gave Simmy and Ferdinand a French Book of Mormon this week also and they were very excited to receive one so that they could understand better.  This week was a week of giving blessings i guess because on Saturday before conference, we went and Bunga gave one of Brother George's relatives who is having a baby soon a blessing and also last night, i gave a blessing to our Branch Mission Leader who has been really sick lately.  

So about conference.  On Saturday, we watched conference for 6 straight hours from 2-8.  Long, but it was very good.  Boyd K. Packer's talk awesome as were both of Uchtdorf's talks and Elder Robbins' talk.  So dad! How did you not see Josh Eastman?! He appeared 4 times in the choir man! I saw him in the front row.  I saw him in the first song, then in the medley they did, then in congregational song, and then the last song....I also saw twice Brandon Navarro! The kid from Vallivue that i played ball against.  Sunday we also watched conference and i really liked Hales' talk, Hamula's talk, Eyring's and also Scott's.  Chris, from Tanzania, Vincent David and Amuda, and also Cedrick's friend Stephen came to conference on sunday so that was really good.  

So basically that was my week this week.  I love the pictures of Tyler and Dad on the four wheeler! Answers to Qs: Funniest thing this week was probably either Sister Chantee's encounter with "Black Magic" or after we ate Pizza Hut, Elder Bunga and I were leaving to go to an appointment and so we were kind of going down the stairs real fast and Bunga was in front of me.  So doors in India are random.  You never know which way will be pull and which will be push.  So Bunga ran down the stairs and continues running forward thinking the door was push, so he runs right into the door and smacks into it and bounces back.  It was pretty funny.  The best thing i ate was probably the Pizza Hut.  Or the Chicken Biriyani i ate last night.  Or the cream buns which are a snack i am obsessed with now.  So i haven't had a ton of interactions with the kids but they all think my name is funny so all come up to me and say my name and then laugh and repeat my name a bunch haha.  The kids are so cute.  

Dad: KD is out?!?!?!? Crap.  Well until he comes back, the Thunder are really going to struggle.  Yeah without Hill i guess BYU will have a rough time.  Is their backup really bad or something? Sounds the Giants aren't doing too bad.  Mountain View doing well also eh? Very good.  Keep the updates comin;) they are awesome so thanks pa!

Scriptures of the week (there were three that i couldn't choose between): 2 Nephi 2:6-9, 2 Nephi 31:18-20, Jacob 4:7.  Oh and PS, i have lost about 10 pounds in India.  I was 183 when i left the MTC, and now i am somewhere between 170 and 174 haha.  Anyways, good week this week and hopefully another one to come this upcoming week for you all and i both!
Love you all!
Elder Ball

Monday, October 6, 2014

October 6, 2014 - Bangalore Pictures

Nice color coordination between clothes and bball; must have found a Nike store!

Elder Ball, Tresor, Elder Bunga

Elder Ball, Yona, Elder Bunga

October 6, 2014 - Bangalore

Hi Family,
Well another week come and gone.  On Tuesday we helped a branch member move their home all day, so that day went by super fast and we got a ton of stuff done helping them move.  So this week Vincent David took a major step backwards....He drank and smoked marijuana again...It was so upsetting.  Easily the most upsetting thing during my mission yet.  It killed us.  So then throughout the rest of the week he took marijuana a few times but he did come to church.  So right now, it doesn't look like any baptisms will happen on the 11th because Vincent David isn't ready, sister Amuda hasn't been to church enough times yet, and Kishore's uncle talked to Kishore this week and is interfering with Kishore's meeting us and so he sent him to Hyderabad....Very disappointing as far as that goes.
We made some good progress with John and Simmy and their brother Ferdinand as well so that was really good.  And we met with Chris yesterday and he is still very interested. This week we also met a member that just moved here from Congo named Tresor (He is the one in the pictures i uploaded with the white shirt).  He is a super cool guy but he doesn't speak or understand english very well at all.  But he is always available to go with us to appointments especially to Kothanur where he can talk to them in French.  He is awesome and likes basketball.  The picture with the other African guy and me and Bunga is Yona.  So we are still working really hard and we had pretty good numbers this week as a companionship.  Still trying to improve though every week.

I hope Tyler is doing great.  I loved seeing that picture of him on the couch with his adorable smile.  I'm glad conference was good! It always is though.  I'm excited for it.  I bet it was weird for Dad to not go with me to Priesthood session... It was good to see pics of my missionary friends too! 
Dang, BYU was doing so good! Taysom Hill must have been super valuable if they lost after he broke his leg...

Well the Scripture of the week is 1 Nephi 15: 24-25. Well I miss you all! I pray for you every morning and night.  Hopefully a good week ahead for both you and I!
With Love, 
Elder Ball

Sunday, October 5, 2014

September 29, 2014 - Bangalore Pictures

Wonder how he fits on this little bed!

He found some peanut butter!  (which looks better than whatever is cooking below)
Homemade Chicken Curry