Monday, May 29, 2017

A Part of My Heart Will Always Remain in Ghana

Ghana Temple

Dear Family and Friends,

It has been another great week of laboring in the Lord's vineyard. I cannot express just how much I will miss being a missionary in the Ghana Accra Mission. I have still not fully come to terms with the idea that I will be going home soon. I don't think I will totally accept it until I am on the plane. A part of my heart will always remain in this blessed land with the people I have come to love so deeply. 

I love Danfa Ward. Our members are so kind and loving. They treat us like we are a part of their family. I guess that is how it should be among the followers of Christ. We must realize that everyone around us is a part of our heavenly family. We should love them as our brothers and sisters, regardless of their race, culture, or circumstances. That is one area I have been trying to improve on recently, and I reckon it is something I will have to keep working on throughout my life. 

I am loving the Book of Mormon right now. As a matter of fact, I need to confess some slight disobedience. Last night I decided to read a chapter or two in the beginning of Alma before going to bed. The next thing I knew it was almost 1 am and I was in chapter 36. It never ceases to amaze me that I can read from the same chapters a hundred times and still find something new each time. That is why I love reading the Book of Mormon so much. I can always learn more about my Savior and what I can do to follow in His footsteps. This week it is my resolve to invite as many people as I can to read that book that they too may know of the power it has to change their lives. 

On Friday I had the chance to attend the temple for my last time as a missionary. I will greatly miss the Ghana temple. It is beautiful and I have had many sacred experiences in there. 

This week we were blessed with a mighty miracle. Sis. Kadija, a member in our ward who works at the distribution center, invited us over. She loves watching cooking shows and watched one recently where they made macaroni and cheese. She decided she needed to try it. She bought everything she needed (including the ridiculously expensive cheese) and prepared Elder Scott and I some amazing mac and cheese. It was a little taste of home. 

That is about it for this week. The Lord's work continues to roll forth. Next week I will write my final letter. It is a humbling thought. I know as I have never known before that Jesus Christ lives. He is the son of God. He was chosen to come to earth as a great and last sacrifice for mankind. He has the power to change anyone who will come unto Him and keep His commandments. His love is perfect and His arms are always open to comfort those who will embrace Him. I love my Savior.
Elder Radmall

Questions from Mom:
Q.  What is your favorite thing about Elder Scott?
He is hilarious! We laugh together all day long.
Q. What meal do you want ready to eat when you get home?
I will eat anything, but I would love a double cheeseburger with a large order of fries and an XL mint oreo milkshake. 
Q. Funniest moment of the week?
Today we went to some awesome botanical gardens in Aburi. Elder Scott and I went down this dirt path into the jungle for like thirty minutes before realizing we weren't in the gardens anymore. Upon returning to the gardens we found a sign saying, "Warning, do not go beyond this point of the garden." We missed that sign. Haha we had a great adventure wandering through the jungle.
Q. Happiest moment of the week?
I think my happiest moment this week was when I took the sacrament on Sunday. I was overwhelmed with feelings of gratitude and joy as I thought of the Savior's sacrifice for me. 
Q. How have angels watched over you this week?
This week angels watched over me as I rode a trotro in heavy rain. They allowed us to make it home safely. 

Questions from TeriAnn:
Q. Abigail asked - are you going to miss Ghana?
Of course!
Q. What has surprised you the most while serving your mission in Ghana?
Everyone here does not live in a hut by the river. 
Q. How many companions have you had total? 
Q. If you could tell everyone you know one thing about your experience while in Ghana, 
what would it be?
I would share with them the love and the kindness of the people of Ghana. 

Questions from Kurt:
Q.Calvin graduated from preschool this week, just like you'll soon graduate from this stage of your life. He's moving on to grade school. What about you?
I'm moving on to live in my parents house and letting them feed me for the next 20 years. 
Q. What is the hardest thing you've witnessed this past month?
One of the hardest things I have witnessed is seeing people who are sick, both physically and mentally, but have nowhere to go for help. It is heartbreaking to see people in such painful circumstances. 
Q. What living condition adjustment will be the biggest for you (besides air conditioning)?
Always having electricity. I won't have to iron my shirt Saturday night because I can count on there being power when I wake up on Sunday! 
Q. What scripture story do you think relates best to the people of Ghana?
The Tree of Life. Many people here are holding fast to the iron rod and pressing forward despite the many people around them who point and laugh because of their devotion to the Gospel. 

Monday, May 22, 2017

Great New Investigators

Hello Everyone!

I hope that you are all just great. What a wonderful time to be alive upon the earth! How blessed we are to know that there is a living God who loves us and watches over us. How sweet to know that out of His love for us He sent His son, Jesus Christ, to ransom us from death and atone for the sins of mankind. How wonderful to have the Gospel on the earth today along with the priesthood that we might prepare ourselves to enter God's presence as eternal families. 

This week was great. We were able to start teaching a lot of great new investigators. One of them was Brother Asamoah who contacted us last Sunday to ask where our chapel was. We had an amazing lesson with him about the church Christ established and how that church was lost. We gave him the assignment to read about how it has been restored today. He seemed very interested and asked great questions. Another great new investigator was Bro. Francis. He lives in a town called Oyibi and he has learned with missionaries before. We gave him an assignment to read about the Plan of Salvation and when we returned he had not only read the pamphlet, but he had written down a list of wonderful questions to ask about it. He even invited his brother to come and join our lesson. It was a powerful lesson and we look forward to seeing him again this week.

One day as we were entering our apartment to eat some lunch, I saw something scurrying across the wall. It was a HUGE lizard. The biggest I have ever seen here. He looked so cool! He was trying to climb the wall, but he kept falling. Finally he stepped up the stairs and we loaded him into a box to release him outside. We named him Albert. 

Yesterday was our stake conference. It was so powerful. I heard so many messages that I needed to. An area seventy from Nigeria presided, and the newly called Elder Quaisie of the seventy was also in attendance. Almost every single speaker, including President and Sister Heid, bore powerful witness of the power of the Book of Mormon and the power it has as we read it each and every day. I will continue to read that book knowing that it will bring me closer to my Savior.

My time is up. The work rolls forth. God is at the helm. The church is true. I love you all! Have a great week. 

Editor's note:  Today in the Heid epistle we found out that Elder Bednar is in Africa.  He is dedicating Senegal and possibly Mali for the preaching of the gospel.  

Bryan was short on time today, but Elder Kallon, who Bryan trained months ago, sent some photos:

Monday, May 15, 2017

The Work Rolls On

Hello Family and Friends!

What a fantastic week! Happy late Mother's Day to all of you wonderful women out there who love and care for those around you. You are great! It was a delight to be able to talk to some of the fam yesterday. I wish I could have called everyone, but I was especially grateful to be able to wish mom a Happy Mother's Day. I have the best mom in the world. She has sacrificed all of her time and given all of her energy to being a mother and it has blessed me far more than words can say. Love you mom! 

The last couple of weeks in our area have been a little bit challenging. We have a lot of wonderful people we are teaching, and many of them have visited the church and love it. They believe it is true and that Joseph Smith is a prophet. The only problem is that they have stopped visiting church. We teach them each week and they make a firm commitment to come on Sunday, but when Sunday rolls around they are nowhere to be found. It is hard to see these brothers and sisters who have found the truth, but are not yet willing to fully commit themselves to it. But I have faith that at the right time they will act upon what they believe. I will continue to pray for them and to love them and teach them what I know to be true. I pray that I am sowing seeds which others will reap. 

This week we were able to go on an exchange with the Haatso elders! Elder Tolzmann, from Nevada, and Elder Ceboy, from Liberia. I worked with Elder Ceboy. We had an awesome day biking, talking, and teaching. He has only been a member for a few years, but his knowledge of the Gospel is great and he is a powerful teacher. 

Yesterday we had a great church service. All of the primary children shared their testimony about mothers. Then they sang a couple of songs. It was hilarious and adorable. I was just smiling the whole time. After church the Lord blessed us with a little miracle. While we were biking to our apartment to get some lunch a man waved us down. He told us he attended church once with a friend two years ago. He was trying to locate the church so that he can start attending. We quickly forgot about lunch and took him straight to the chapel. We gave him a little tour and introduced him to our bishop. This week we will meet with him. I am excited! 

I am still working my way through the Book of Mormon with the hope that I will finish it before returning home.  This morning as I was reading in chapter four of Mosiah a couple of verses struck my heart.  

2 And they had viewed themselves in their own carnal state, even less than the dust of the earth. And they all cried aloud with one voice, saying: O have mercy, and apply the atoning blood of Christ that we may receive forgiveness of our sins, and our hearts may be purified; for we believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who created heaven and earth, and all things; who shall come down among the children of men.

3 And it came to pass that after they had spoken these words the Spirit of the Lord came upon them, and they were filled with joy, having received a remission of their sins, and having peace of conscience, because of the exceeding faith which they had in Jesus Christ who should come, according to the words which king Benjamin had spoken unto them.
As I read these verses I started to reflect on the times when I have messed up and given in to the natural man.  I tried to think of my many shortcomings and my acts of disobedience.  But as I did so I realized that I could scarcely remember specific sins that I have committed, although they are many.  Instead, the Spirit brought to my remembrance the sweet feelings of peace that I experienced as I repented and applied "the atoning blood of Christ" in my own life.  How grateful I am for the healing and forgiveness and mercy I have experienced through applying the Gospel.  It is my prayer to help my brothers and sisters around me to feel that same joy that the Savior offers to all people.  He can blot out our transgressions and reconcile us to God.  In the words of Isaiah, "though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."

Sorry for the long letter. I know the church is true. The Gospel changes lives and I want to do all I can to share it in my last four weeks here! I love you all and I am grateful for your prayers and support. Have a great week.
Elder Radmall

Questions from Mom:
Q. How are your toes??  I have an appointment with a podiatrist for you!!
They are okay. I can still walk, so nothing to complain about. 
Q. What did you teach your children investigators this week?
This week we sadly weren't able to teach them. Hopefully this week we will pass by them. 
Q. Most spiritual moment of the week?
I think my most spiritual moment this week came in a less with a man named Godwin. We were teaching him the Restoration. While Elder Scott and I bore testimony that the Gospel has been restored and that the Lord has once again called a prophet in our days the Spirit testified to my heart of those things. It was a powerful testimony builder. 
Q. Funniest moment of the week?
While on my exchange with Elder Ceboy we stopped at a chop bar to get something to eat. I ordered my favorite food, rice balls and groundnut soup. With our bellies full we moved on to greet some members. I guess they were expecting us because they immediately brought out a meal for us. Two big bowls of rice balls and groundnut soup... I just about burst into laughter when I saw it. I managed to finish it all. 
Q. What person you have met in Ghana has had the most profound impact on you?
There is no way that I can answer that question. So many people have touched me and influenced me in ways that I can't put into words. 
Q. Tell us about another person in your ward….(loved hearing about your bishop)
The Aggrey family have been members of the church in Ghana far longer than I have been alive. They joined in the early 80's and were among the leading pioneers of the church in Ghana. Bro. Aggrey served in the bishopric of one of the first wards in Ghana. He was in that calling when the freeze came, insisting that all church activity stop. Several of the members in their ward continued holding sacrament meetings in the Aggrey's home. Now almost all of their children have served missions. They are an amazing family. 

Questions from TeriAnn:
Q. Do they celebrate Mother's Day in Ghana?
They sure do!
Q. Who has been the most important mother figure for you in Ghana?
Sis. Rosslyn in Koforidua, Sis. Adjei in Nungua, and now it is Sis. Antoinette here in Danfa. I have been blessed with great Ghanaian mothers! 

Sister Rosslyn and Sister Janet - Bryan's Koforidua moms.

Sister Howard, Bryan's Nungua Grandma.

Sister Antoinette, Bryan's Danfa Mom.
(I love these women who have cared for Elder Radmall while he has been far from home.  Sadly, I do not have a photo of Sister Adjei.)

Q. What is your favorite thing about your mother?
Everything. She is pretty much just perfect. I especially love her devotion to the Gospel and her love for the Savior. 
Q. What is one or two things you really hope to do with your last four weeks there? 
See a lion. 

News from the mission:
We received the news below in President Heid's weekly letter.  Bryan served in Koforidua for the first 9 months of his mission.  He loves the people there.  Sadly, he will be home when this conference takes place.  But what a great announcement and a great blessing for the city and the people that are the closest to his heart.  Here's the news:

We enjoyed a wonderful District Conference at Koforidua, where I presided for the last time on my mission.  Can you imagine my joy in being given permission to make this announcement as I bore my final testimony on Sunday?  This was a letter addressed to the Area Presidency and to me, from the office of the First Presidency:

Dear Brethren.
In a recent meeting of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, approval was given to create the Koforidua Ghana Stake from the Koforidua Ghana District, Ghana Accra Mission. This will take place at a conference to be held on June 24-25, 2017.  In addition to the creation of this new unit, approval was given to CREATE SEVEN WARDS.

Pretty fun, huh?  Many of you have worked in Koforidua Zone, and ALL of you have bloomed where you have been planted even if you have not yet been to Koforidua.  ALL of you have contributed in this tremendous achievement by the Ghana Accra Mission Family.
Three years ago when I arrived there were three units in Koforidua.  Now there are eleven!

We describe the above date as a tender mercy, as it will be in our last week of service.  You are welcome to rejoice with us.
Have a great week.  I am enjoying our interviews and Zone Conferences.  Keep on keeping on.

Love, President and Sister Heid

We received Bryan's travel plans this week, as well as this letter from his mission president:

Parents of Elder Radmall
13 West 560 South
Orem, UT  84058

Dear Parents of Elder Radmall:

We are pleased to inform you that Elder Radmall will be completing his missionary service in the Ghana Accra Mission on 13 June 2017.
Elder Radmall has served faithfully and worked diligently to share the message of Jesus Christ with others while strengthening his own testimony and knowledge of the restored gospel. He has also contributed as a leader in his service as a Senior Companion, Trainer, District Leader, and Zone Leader.   He carried out his assignments with diligence and dedication, a mark of a true disciple of Jesus Christ.

As Elder Radmall has served, he has acquired a deep understanding of the gospel and has been blessed with a great love for the people of Ghana.  He has been a wonderful example of all that the Savior taught.  He leaves the mission field with honor and distinction.

We will miss working with Elder Radmall and pray he will keep in touch with us and let us know of his accomplishments in the years ahead. Thank you for sharing your son with us. We pray for his continued success and for the happiness and health of your family.

President David L. Heid
Ghana Accra Mission

Monday, May 8, 2017

Power Outage (a common occurrence in Ghana)

Hello Everyone!!

We have had power outage most of the day, so I have very little time. This will be brief.

On Tuesday we had a zone conference with just our zone. President and Sister Heid came as well as the AP's. We received a lot of great instruction as a zone on how we can plan better to be more effective in this work and anything else we do in our lives. It was great! 

On Wednesday we went on an exchange with the Dodowa elders. I spent the day with Elder Simene in his area. Elder Simene has been out for 4 weeks. He is from the Philippines and has been a member almost his whole life. His favorite food is rice of any kind. He can eat rice for breakfast, lunch, and dinner! He is very funny and has a great love for the Gospel. Both of his brothers should be joining him in the mission field by next year! It was great to spend a day with him. 

Thursday we had MLC (Mission Leader Conference) at the area office. It was a great meeting and the spirit showed me many areas in which I can improve and do better as a missionary and as a disciple of Christ. Then we got to eat some pizza!!!

Time is up! Sorry I couldn't respond to everyone today or answer your questions. I love you all. The church is true and Jesus is the Christ. Have a great week!

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The Book of Mormon - Another Testament of Jesus Christ

Some of my favorite investigators.
We are teaching some people around where those children stay, and they said they wanted to learn. We have taught them about the Godhead and about prophets so far. 

Hello Family and Friends!

I hope you all had a fantastic week! This email should be pretty short and sweet. This week I decided to read The Book of Mormon all the way through one more time before I complete my mission. So I started in 1 Nephi and am currently into 2 Nephi. It has been so great to refresh my mind with the story of Lehi and his family. I learn so much from their faith, perseverance, and obedience every time I read about them. It was no coincidence that The Book of Mormon was also a central part of most of our lessons this week. I love teaching people that there is another testament of Jesus Christ. That book is the keystone of my own testimony of the Savior and of His church. It was through the Book of Mormon that I became truly converted unto the Gospel and decided to serve a mission. Each time we use it to teach, I realize that our lessons run more smoothly. The Spirit is stronger. Our investigators want to read and learn more. I love that book and know that studying it daily will bring anyone closer to their Savior. It will bring peace and hope in a troubled and increasingly dangerous world. 

We are teaching an investigator named Prince right now. He is a single school teacher. He loves the teachings and is currently reading the Book of Mormon. On Sunday he even came to church. We had him meet with our bishop and he practically bore his testimony that he knows God will answer his prayers and show him the truth. I look forward to seeing him continue to grow!

This week I started cooking again! We made fried rice and chicken. On Sunday we went all out and made cheeseburgers! It was expensive, but worth it.

That is about all I have time for this week. I love you all and hope that you have a great week. I can never thank you enough for all of you love and prayers. 
Elder Radmall

Adente zone conference
President talked about planning and having integrity when it comes to the funds we receive. Sister Heid talked about complimenting people to build relationships with them. My companion talked about the importance of gratitude. The AP's talked about being selfless like the Savior.
I also got slightly chastised for not having wireless microphones ready to go. Oops. Whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth.  
We were short on time, so I didn't share most of my thoughts. But I talked about the importance of repenting and letting go of our sins. Then I shared a few helps the Lord has given us to aid us in the repentance process. 

Questions from Momma:
Q. How fast was the taxi going when you had the car accident?
I am not sure. Probably between 30-40 MPH. 
Q. Is Elder Scott related to Elder Richard G. Scott?
Q. How are your teeth doing? 
Hahaha I can't tell you. I still brush them every once in a while, but I haven't seen a dentist in two years! They seem fine though. 
Q. Funniest thing that happened to you this week?
Elder Scott and I got into a soccer war in front of our apartment. We spent about 45 minutes kicking a soccer ball at each other as hard as we could. It was hilarious, especially because we were still in our shirts and ties. 
Q. Tell us about one member of your ward…..
Our Bishop was baptized about 5 years ago when his wife introduced him to the church. About two years later He became a branch president and is now serving as our bishop. He was born and raised in the Methodist Church, but as the missionaries taught him he realized there were a lot of scriptures in the Bible only our church could explain. He has one daughter and one son. He is working for the church right now to translate the hymnbook into Twi. 

Elder Scott (Bryan's companion) with pink eye.

Questions from TeriAnn:
Q. If there is one word you would use to describe your experience in Ghana what would it be?
Q. What is your favorite thing that you have acquired while in Ghana?
An amazing tan line. 
Q. What has brought you the most joy while in Ghana?
Becoming friends with so many of the wonderful people here. It is hard to be unhappy around people who are always smiling. 
Q. What has changed you the most on your mission and in Ghana? 
On my mission what has changed me the most is coming to truly know my Savior. Through studying, praying, and testifying I have gained a deeper understanding of His mission and His love. I can think of nothing more changing. 
Q. What summer experience are you looking forward to the most when you come home? 
I am looking forward to jumping on the trampoline with my nieces and nephews! 

Questions from Kurt:
Q. How are your garments holding up at this point? Not quite as white as they used to be? Nice, yellow pits that are slightly hardened if you wear anti-perspirant?
Q. My garments have done surprisingly well. Most missionaries do have hardened yellow pits, but I wash my pits extra well so they are stain free! 
Q. Have you worn out your scriptures? Bindings holding up?
Yeah. The pages came unglued from the leather binding a while ago, so they constantly slide around. Overall they are still in pretty good condition though. 
Q. Are there any young men serving missions from your ward? If so, wear are they?
We have one young man who just received his call to Nigeria. We should be taking him to proselyte with us a lot this week.