Elder Keato's Address

Igreja de Jesus Cristo dos S.U.D.
Caixa Postal 18404
Luanda, Angola

Monday, June 24, 2013

New Adventure, New Challenges

Well it looks like my time here in Lubango is up, yesterday we got our transfer calls and I am going back up to Luanda. I don't really know what to think, I'm excited for a new adventure but sad to say goodbye to all of these amazing people. This place has been my home for  the past 8 months! It has been so amazing to see all of the changes happen in the branch and see all of the new members mature in the Gospel. It is such a testament of the truthfullness of the message that we have, seeing people's lives literally take a 180. Our Elders quorum president and sunday school president were baptized in December and the young mens president was baptized a month ago. This branch is growing so much and it is really thanks to the faithfulness of the recent converts. I love these people. I've already had to get a few goodbyes out of the way and it wasn't fun... My flight leaves on Wednesday so luckily I have time to see mostly everyone. I am so grateful for the time that I have had to serve here, I fell like I have personally grown so much, not only as a missionary but as a person. My testimony has completely evolved and I know my Savior so much better than I did before. I love this place, and I wish I could truly express what it is like, and what time here has been like, but I don't think it's possible through email. 

I had a great last week in the area, we saw some major progress with some of our investigators. As I think I've mentioned the Law of Chastity is such an issue here, well we have had an investigator named Francisco (he is part of the big family we're teaching) who is about 20 years old and really wanting to find some purpose in his life. He has been living with his girlfriend and when we taught the law of chastity he realized that he isn't even close to ready to be married, so we have been helping make the neccessary changes and this past week him and his girlfriend got separate places and he is going to be baptized in a few weeks! I'm so sad that I won't be able to be there, but I'm so excited for him! He'll be the first of the family to make it into the water, but he definitely won't be the last. 

Another one of our investigators, Julieta, has been doing really well also. She's had a pretty tough last few months. 3 Months ago her husband died, then with his death some other issue came up, and now the government is trying to kick her out of her house that she's lived in for 40 years becuase they want the land... It has been really impressive to see her come closer to Heavenly Father during this time rather than the opposite. She has put complete faith in him and has truly put everything in His hands. We started teaching her the week after her husband died and it has been so cool to see her faith develope. She has a testimony of everything and should be baptized here in a few weeks. She's such an inspiring lady! It's going to be good to hear the updates on all of my old investigators.

Once again, I wish I could truly express my love for this place and for these people. They're my family. There's no doubt that a few tears will fall as I fly away. But, it's time for a new adventure back in the concrete jungle of Luanda! New adventure, new challanges!

I hope that you all have an awesome week! Thanks for the support!


Elder Hyde

Monday, June 17, 2013

A More Excellent Way

The Gospel is such a powerful tool. It truly can repair any problem in anyone's life. This week we saw a few different testaments of that.

Last transfer we started teaching two men named Americo and Lito, they came to us looking for help with their drinking and smoking problems. Americo lives alone and because of that beer was his best friend. He started drinking and smoking when he was 16, because it was the cool thing to do, and hasn't been able to stop since. Over the past two months we have been working hard with him and telling him just how important it is that he says his prayers and reads his scriptures daily. For the first little while he didn't really have the desire or will power. But we never let up and kept pushing it on him. Yesterday Elder Yeanoplos and I stopped by just to see how he was doing (we like to suprise him). I talked to a totally different Americo, he held his composure, didn't slure his speach at all, and we actually had a real conversation. He said that he has gone a solid week now without even having a desire to drink. I won't lie, we just about gave up on this guy, after a few months of no progress at all, but we kept pushing him and kept testifying of the power of the Gospel in our lives and he is now starting to see it. Lito is a very similar story. He is part of that huge family that we are teaching, and he is really the only one that has problems with the Word of Wisdom. It has been so cool to see how everyone has been supporting him. He has gone a little more than a week without smoking or drinking. And yesterday he came to the church for the first time! It has been so cool to see his relationship with his "wife" change over the past little while. They are now talking marriage and hopefully will be baptized in the coming months. The Gospel is incredible. It has been such an incredible opportunity to introduce these people to the restored truth, and see the blessings manifested as they obey what we teach. I hate alchool!!! It is such a powerful thing! It is so sad to see it completely destroy lives here, every morning we see guys out in the street completly drunk, literally fallen on their faces... Satan is hard at work.. But the good thing is that God is working even harder. 

We had a great week! Hopefully this one will be even better. I hope that you all have the best week of your lives! 


Elder Hyde


Thursday, June 13, 2013

What A Week!

Wow. Onother great week in the books. Let me tell you about it.
We'll start with the highlight of the week. One of our long time
investigators named Eddy was baptized! It has been really cool to see
him go through the conversion process. He was introduced to the chuch
by his best friend Pedro who has been a member for about a year now.
Eddy is a really special kid, he's 17 years old and is probably one of
the humblest kids I've ever met. He lives in a small, energyless house
with 5 other brothers and sisters. He doesn't complain that all of his
friends have televisions and running water, he's just happy to have
the necessities of life. Saturday his best friend Pedro baptized him,
the look on his face was priceless as he left the water. I asked him
how he felt after the baptism and he gave the answer most people give.
Light. Eddy is going to be a huge example for his other family
members. We are hoping that here in a few weeks his mother will be
baptized, and the cool thing is that he will be able to baptize her.
The Gospel has really brought this kid out of his shell, I'm excited
to see his progress over the coming months and years!
This week we started teaching some really cool people. Last Sunday
night we got a call from a member in Luanda telling us that one of his
relatives here in Lubango was having a lot of problems and that she
really could use a visit from us.  Her name is Carla and we first sat
with her last Tuesday. Before we even sat down she was already crying
telling us what's going on in her life. Basically she is having some
problems with her husband because of some financial issues. We shared
a quick message with her and then marked for another time to go back
and meet with her and her husband. Last night we met with both of them
and it was incredible. We taught them the restoration and explained
how applying the principles of the restored Gospel in the home will
truly make everything better. The problems might not go away but they
won't have the same impact as before. Before we left they were already
talking and laughing together again. She said that it has been awhile
since they've done that.
We also started teaching new guy named Albindimas this week. It was
really cool how we met him. We were waiting outside of a new families
house that we are going to start teaching and he casually walked up to
us and started chatting. Then he was like, "Hey you can wait for him
in my house if you want..." We gladly accepted and taught him the
restoration on the spot. He expressed to us how he doesn't really have
direction in his life and that he doesn't really know Christ, but he
wants to. We were happy to offer our help. It funny how these people
open right up to the missionaries without any hesistation. We look
forward to helping him form a relationship with his Savior. I'll keep
you updated on him!
Life is good down here in Lubango! The work is going better than ever
and I am not complaining at all. Yesterday the chapel was full once
again. I got to talk once again, it was awesome! I was asked to speak
on spiritual gifts and how we all need to develope the ones we have
been blessed with. It went really well.
I hope all is well! I love you all so much and am so grateful for your
prayers! Keep on keepin' on!!!

Elder Hyde

Monday, June 3, 2013

Hey hey!

Keato hit his one year mark this week! 

Long time no talk! This last week was a little different with us having P-day on Wednesday, but it was still a good one!

Our area is doing really well lately, we have a lot of good, progressing investigators that should make their way to the water pretty soon. I think a few weeks ago I mentioned our investigator Julieta who lost her husband about 2 months ago. She has been doing so great lately, her whole demeaner has changed dramatically over the past month or so. The thing that she has treasured the most is prayer. When we taught her that prayed doesn't need to be decorated or memorized that it is just a conversation with God her mind was blown. She has expressed the many differences that she has seen and felt after learning about the Plan of Salvation, she has hope in her life now. We are so excited for! She should be getting baptized in the next few weeks. It is such an honor to be here to witness the Gospel change people's lives!

We had a really cool experience a few nights ago as we were heading to our last appointment. We finished up a lesson at about 7 o'clock and had to rush to the other side of our area for our last lesson.  Our are is huge so it's always fun rushing from appointment to appointment. We use taxis to get to appointments and usually they stop at around 6 o'clock. But we were pretty confident that we would get one. We got to the street where one of the routes passed by and all of these taxi drivers kept giving us the cold shoulder, for some reason they didn't want our money. We thought that was strange, but kept waiting. And then out of no where a little car taxi pulled up with out us even calling us over and let us in. Basically long story short. If we would have taken a normal taxi as planned we would have had to walk pretty far to our investigators house, because the taxi route doesnt' go all the way there, but this nice taxi man (probably the nicest I've ever met) for some reason wanted to take us right to the house. That has never happened before. Who knows if anything would have happened had we walked to our investigators house in the dark, but I am confiedent that the Lord sent that man to help us out. He was super cool, and we plan to start teaching him this week. I don't know if this story really makes sense... you had to be there... 

The mission is so full of tender mercies! I love it! I hope that you all have an awesome week! Thanks for the love and support!


Elder Hyde

Kiddies: Have a nice last week of school! You guys better party extra hard for me!