Monday, April 29, 2013


Area- Vosloorus, South Africa
Companion- Elder Kelebogile
Letter #77

WAHOOOOO!!! Gonna have two full time missionaries in the fam bam! Crazy, neh? I am super excited for Nate! I was only one country away from guessing that one right! Did anybody guess it correctly? He is gonna be a great missionary. Just make sure he reads the Book of Mormon! Bummer he is going before I get home. It's alright though, imagine how happy we are gonna be to see each other again! Dad, did you not see any of your brothers and sisters for longer than 2 years when you went on mission? Has Jaren put in his mission papers yet?

WAHOOOOO!!! again! We had 2 baptisms this Sunday for Vusi and Nqobile and also the district had 4 more all at the same time! I got to baptize Vusi, Nqobile and Musa which was really cool and I was the one who interviewed all but one investigator before they got baptized. Conducting the baptism interviews is such a cool experience! Sometimes people don't talk a lot and just give you the answers but other people really tell you about their testimonies and it is such a spiritual experience. When I was interviewing Musa he told me that his goal is to go to the temple and to be sealed and he is going to keep all of the commandments to do it. He is only 16 and a brand new convert but he has already caught part of the bigger vision of everything which is powerful!

Yesterday in priesthood class we had a lesson about the temple and it wasn't very clear so Vusi and Kgaugelo were a bit confused so we went to teach them more about it and help them understand. They were amazed at it all when they actually got it. In the priesthood class the teacher was referring to the talk from last conference where Elder Whiting talks about the construction of the temple and cleaning even the smallest grit or fixing the smallest cracks before completion. Kgaugelo, after we got done teaching him last night, says "Wow, now I understand why they had to be so perfect and precise building the temple. And now it makes so much sense why we have to keep ourselves clean, not just to go to Heaven but so that we can go the temple now." He and Vusi want to go so bad. They were scared that their families would not accept the gospel and be able to be sealed to them for eternity. We are gonna have a family home evening with Kgaugelo tonight and just try to slowly get his family into the gospel. I love it when we get to teach people like these guys and they have such a huge desire to learn more and to share it with their families. It shows that they are truly converted and that they understand the purpose of the gospel. Every time we go visit them we end up just answering all of the questions that they have and they understand cause they let the spirit teach them. They have become humble through their conversion and the spirit can now touch their hearts. Sometimes we take them to teach with us and they love to talk and answer the investigators questions cause they can relate. They will say things like "Yep, I also used to think that when the missionaries first came to teach me but..." They both want to be missionaries but they have to work on raising money. I hope they can make it!

It's funny that we have these baptisms for a lot of young people and in the next couple months its gonna be more families and parents that are getting baptized. WE are currently teaching 3 or 4 families that could be baptized within the next 3 months! So exciting!

It has been a great week and I am enjoying being with my new companion Elder Kelebogile! He is way mature compared to me cause he is almost 24. I don't know about mature but I guess more serious and less joking. Having a great time though! I still haven't got a bad companion! They are all excellent! :D Sorry, Elder Foote is still the only one of my companions that has a blog.

Love you all! Till next time,
Nkosi Sikileli Africa!
-Elder Bobby Dirkmaat :D

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

New Companion!!

Area- Vosloorus, South Africa
Companion- Elder Kelebogile
Letter #76

Cannot wait for Nate's mission call! What are everybody else's guesses for where he is going to go? Anybody guess Africa this time around? Haha.

Everybody is changing and growing so much, it's crazy! it's gonna be a whole new world when I get back! I have come to decide that it is a long time to be away from loved ones but it is soooo worth it! I am loving everything about being a missionary! Seeing people change and become new people when they see the light of the truth of the restored gospel is amazing! There is a man that we are teaching who has been "investigating" since 1995. His wife is a member and his daughter as well. He went to church twice for both of their baptisms. We decided to just start reading the Book of Mormon with him one chapter at a time. He has started to read it on his own when we are not there. Every time we go to his house there is brighter light about him. Last time we went he told us that he doesn't like to read cause it is boring and he would rather do other things like watch soccer. 10 minutes later he told he was just joking. He is a really funny guy and will keep a joke going for a really long time. We were so worried and then of course so relieved when he told us that he is actually really enjoying reading and will even turn soccer off to w\read and watch the recorded game later. He says that he is starting to understand why it is so important and is learning many new things. We've been able to have really great conversations with him in relation to the chapters we red that are usually started by the questions and thoughts that he shares with us. I am super excited for this man and even if it takes him a long time to transition, i know that we are doing a great work now and the fruits will be made manifest in whole is some time when he gets baptized and takes his wife to the temple to be sealed for all time and eternity!

My new companion, Elder Kelebogile is from South Africa! He was companions with Elder martin in the MTC so that's cool. W are having a great time together so far. He is a convert of 3 years but he used to go with the missionaries for weeks at a time so he has been able to develop much knowledge and a very strong testimony. he is kinda like Kgaugelo. Baptized and 20 and preparing to go on mission now. This is going to be great transfer with him!

It is starting to be winter now and it is getting really cold! Well maybe just a little chilly, but still. We are having 2 baptisms this Sunday again! Woot woot! Kgaugelo's friend Vusi and also a members ex-girlfriend, Nqobile. Can you say that one? We are baptizing a lot of YSA age people now and then in the next coming months it's gonna be pure families!

They are getting ready to split the Botswana mission, do you think that i will get to go back? I think it would be awesome to go back and broaden the missionary work there and help prepare the land for a few stakes and a temple! It is ripe and ready to harvest!

Well have a fabtastic week family. Do missionary work!
Love you all!
-Elder Dirkmaat :D

Monday, April 15, 2013

24 Lessons!

Area- Vosloorus, South Africa
Companion- Elder Martin
Letter #75

Zone activity dinner at The Harvard!  Pizza is 1/2 off which means we get a large gourmet pizza for 35 rand, that's like $4!
Here comes the rain dun no dun no here comes the rain and I say...
Baptism of Kgaugelo

Chez Dirkmaat ;) Chef du jour!
Foti vode Taufi (picture from the baptism of Swiss!)
Baptism for Ofentse!

WOOOO! That means Nate's call is probs coming this week! 6 more weeks haha. You should ask bishop what the status is so you know if it's still in process, ready for assignment, or what. I'm so excited! That means I have to guess! Alright let me think... Stateside: Massachusetts Foreign: Paraguay - Nate is powerful! Now Ollie is gonna get the Stripling Warrior award before he is even 17! haha. Have they thought of a reward like that for the young women? What did Nate do for his Eagle Project?

Where did Pres. Crickmore go to become Mission President? Has he already started or does he start in July?

Alright so here's the theme song of the weekend: "Yesterday" by The Beatles. Why? Because Elder Martin is leaving. :( Another one transfer companion. I'm scared that if I get too many companions my luck is gonna run out and one of these times I'm gonna get a companion that I don't like! Having a baptism still made the weekend super! Ofentse is the daughter of Carl who was baptized in February. Elder Martin is sad that he is leaving cause we are planning to have many baptisms these coming months. One of our baptisms for Sinothemba didn't happen cause his mom went to Nigeria and so we have to wait until she gets home. Another guy that we are teaching, Daniel, told us when we went to visit for Elder Martin to say goodbye that I'll probably be the one baptizing him. Bittersweet. He's been investigating since July and his wife has been a member for a very long time.

This week was crazy good for some reason. Usually it is hard to have 20 lessons in a week but we had 12 by the end of Wednesday and finished with 24! We are teaching tons of families which is awesome. All the families we are teaching are on date for baptism in June so I hope I will still be here! Since Elder Martin is leaving now it is possible that I won't... The time is getting shorter and I don't like it at all! Too many things to learn, people to teach, things to organize etc etc. There are always days that there is hardly anything to do and then other days where you are struggling to get everything done that you are supposed to. For example, families can usually only meet in the evening after 5 and before 8 and we gotta visit each family at least twice in the week. Between the times of 11 and 3 there are very few people that we can visit. I wish there was a way to just have public sermons like the early latter day saint missionaries and teach everybody at the same time and be able to get the gospel to tons of people quickly!

Kgaugelo received the priesthood yesterday so now he is a Priest! This guy loves the gospel. You can tell by the questions they ask and how they tell you how excited they were to learn blah blah in Sunday school when we go visit them later in the day. Ever since we had the lesson where Lorenzo Snow teaches us that we can become like God, every singe prayer he says he includes something about asking to help us be more like Him. He is really trying his best! All of his friends that we are teaching all of the sudden got really busy with work and school and family things and so we haven't been able to visit them as much. It's a bummer but I am sure that even if we don't get to teach them, Kgaugelo is still gonna be great example to them and they will eventually learn the fullness of the gospel and follow through.

There's not much else to say but let me share a quote I heard:

"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better, it's not." - Dr. Seuss

Have a great week! LOve you!

-Elder Dirkmaat :D

Monday, April 8, 2013

Missionary Work is Grrrreat!

Area- Vosloorus, South Africa
Companion- Elder Martin
Letter #74


Is this the week that Nate and Dad are in Mexico? Did you watch General Conference this weekend? How was it? Sara did and she said it was awesome! I don't get to watch it until the 20th and 21st and I cannot wait! Elder Martin and I have been trying to watch one speaker a night from the last Conference. We are gonna have to double up on some nights cause we are falling behind!

The missionary work here is going grrrreat like always! We got to being Kgaugelo to teach with us. One day we went to teach his friend Jackson and then afterwards we had a lesson with a sister and we were gong to teach the law of chastity. Jackson said that he also wanted to come with us so we said okay and brought him! Kgaugelo and Jackson could have taught that lesson alone and didn't even need us there! Jackson, who is not even a member yet answered one of her question with power. She asked if financial problems constitute grounds for divorce. Jackson started talking about the eternities and heaven and how we are not going to have material things when we get there so why should we let material things tear apart a marriage that is supposed to last forever and where those material things will not be. BOOM! Spoken like an apostle ha. It was funny cause I was about to answer and he says, "Can I try to answer this one?" and we said sure.

We are hoping to have 2 baptisms this coming Sunday again! A recent convert, Bro. Carl, has a daughter, Offentse, who is now ready and also a boy, Sinothemba, who has been coming to church with the bishops sons for the past few months. Kgaugelo's friends, Vusi, Jackson, and Sipho (cipopodnis! hahaha) are all preparing for the 28th. Kgaugelo is going to receive the priesthood next Sunday and maybe even he will be able to baptize his friends which would be awesome! The Ndimane family is still preparing for June 09. All the kids came to church and even the oldest brought his girlfriend with him. The parents didn't come but we got to see the oldest sjamboc his mom for it ha.

This week we also ran into another family that we tracted a few weeks ago. We found this guy and he told us to come back so we kept coming back and he was never there so we were tracting in the area again and decided to go try one more time. He was home! It turns out that he had lost his job and that is why he was home. His 2 daughters were also there so we got to teach them the message of the restoration. he was asking super questions and event he daughters were really interested even thought they are only 11 and 14. The spirit was so string and I could tell that they had a strong desire to learn more that we even got to give them a baptismal date for June 09 and they accepted! They are the kind of people that when they recognize a little but of the truth they are willing to find out more about it. Kind of like when we taught Wilson and he just had this crazy look on his face, it was the same with the Nkosi family. They had these looks of wonder and amazement. he told us how he stopped going to church a long time ago and then later on he said "Oh! So you're saying that the truth was lost. That must be why I stopped going to church back then. Cause my church didn't have the fullness. I need to come to yours and find this truth now!" YES YOU DO! I love it when people recognize that and actually understand that that is exactly what we are trying to teach them. We also found out that when we had given them the restoration pamphlet when we tracted there the first time the 14 yr old daughter had taken it into her room and was reading and studying it. We are finding some great families and it feels so great!

One other thing is that I also got to learn how to play Rugby. i always thought it was boring but now that I know how to play, it is super fun! Don't worry we were just playing touch, not tackle. ha.

I hope all is well! Have a super week and always listen to the promptings of the spirit to direct our paths for good!

-Elder Dirkmaat :D

Monday, April 1, 2013

Happy Easter!

Area- Vosloorus, South Africa
Companion- Elder Martin
Letter #73


Sounds like a nice Easter Weekend for you! Can't say that ours was that good haha. We only taught 1 lesson total on Saturday and Sunday combined :( Kind of a bummer. We should be having more lessons on the days that are holidays related to Christ but instead we are just walking through the town a midst drunkards and the sort. It's sad and I really wish that people understood the reason that Easter is so important. Everybody went to church on Good Friday but on Saturday and Sunday it was just party central and even today there are more shops closed than there were yesterday. I am so grateful that we do have a knowledge of the restored gospel and that we have a living prophet to day to "prick [us] in the heart, stirring [us] up continually" in the remembrance of our Savior and the things that he has done for us! What a beautiful gift that we have and how great the importance to share it with everybody that we can! It made me so happy to hear that you had invited that family over for dinner and showed them that movie to remind them of what Easter is all about and even given them a chance to see and hear the prophet of God bear his testimony. I'm so glad that I can be a missionary full-time right now and that Easter weekend is not the only opportunity I have to share the gospel. We are not Christian only on Easter and Christmas; we are Christians full-time! I'm not a missionary only when I feel like it; I am a missionary full-time!

We met a really cool family this week, the Molefe family. We were tracting for a few minutes before we had an appointment. We knocked on their gate and waited for a loooong time and were about to leave and then their little boy came running around the corner followed by his father. Last time it was Elder Martin that said something dumb when the Ndimane family let us in(by the way they are doing awesome and they have a baptism date for June 09) and this time it was me who said something dumb and he said okay come in! Don't know why but he was excited. We met his wife and his 2 kids. Shared a very brief message of the restoration and told them where the church was and they said they would come. Guess what? They actually came! They left after the second hour, don't know why. They left so fast that we couldn't even get through all the people before they were in the car and gone. BUT they came and I think they enjoyed. We shall see on Weds when we have an appointment with them. I really hope that we get to teach them cause they are a perfect family to come into the church! They are looking for a family church right now cause they just moved to the area and the father isn't really religious, he goes to church cause his wife wants to. They need it so bad! Heavenly Father knows it too cause we could have just sat on the curb and waited 15 mins for our appointment and not have found the Molefe family.

We got to go to an Easter devotional after church where the bishop showed that movie that you watched, "He is Risen". I liked it a lot! Have you seen the DVD's, Mormon Messages? If not I bet you could get them at Deseret Book. They are super cool and have tons of short messages that you could share when you invite people for dinner or for FHE or whatever. Thanks for being a great example of member missionary work! Did you find out what the missionaries do to organize the member missionary work in the ward? -I wanna know! Can you show me?- can you guess the Phil Collins song and the movie?

This week Elder Martin got 2 packages for Easter that were sent on Mar 09 and I still didn't get the one that you sent for Valentines...I don't think I'm getting that one :( There was a post strike for like a month that I didn't even know about and I think it was during the time that you sent it.

Have a super week! Nate and Dad, be safe and shred the gnar!!

Love y'all!
-Elder Dirkmaat :D