Tuesday, November 30, 2010

THE END- the last email- THE BEGINNING

Check out the collar- only my boy!

Monday, November 29, 2010
well, BSU lost there first and last games they played while i was on my mission. Bummer! But that news about dallin briner was very sad. And it really does put things into perspective.
But i am very excited to see you all this week! thursday night is goingt to be hectic! we'll have to pray for the weather to co-operate from what i've heard there has been some crazy storms. i'll be on the plane. just make sure the runways ready!
I will take your advice for the flight dad! I'm hoping that i won't be too out of it when i get home!
the bad news this week is that i've had a cold and a terrible headache the last few days.... it's been pretty lame. THE BEST NEWS is that Sibahle got baptized! and that she is so powerful! i'm so happy i got to baptize on my last sunday! I'll send a picture! But you'll see it either way on friday!
But i will just bear a short testimony today.... because you'll be hearing my testimony non-stop for the next month. But i know that god lives, that christ is his son. that he lives as well. That Joseph Smith was a true prophet and that thomas s monson is a prophet today. The Church is true I have no doubt of that!
Have a great week!
-Elder Michael forrest johnson

On Mon, Nov 29, 2010 at 8:43 AM, Johnson, George (ACSO-Boise) wrote:
Hi Michael:

Well, you will be going to the Boise State game, but I regret to inform you that they will not be undefeated. We lost to University of Nevada in OT Friday night. So it was definitely a Black Friday! I’m not going to attach an article and pictures because I don’t want you to dwell on anything negative as you end your mission today.

It has been a long day of Bishoping, as I spent 4 hours with a couple who are having some struggles. So it is late and I need to be brief. I suspect your time is short as well. Tell us really quick what you have to do in order to get to the mission home and then make your flight home.

I hope everything went well this last week of your mission. I’m so proud (in the Uchtdorf way J) of your diligent service in South Africa & Botswana! I know Heavenly Father is please with you and that you will reap blessings from your missionary service for the rest of your life. We are looking forward so much to welcoming you home and I couldn’t help but think as I was meeting with the Priests today how awesome it will be to have you teach them next Sunday!

I hope you will use your experience serving the Lord this past two years as a pattern for your entire life, serving with diligence, obedience, faith, enthusiasm and love. I promise if you always do that your life will be blessed, your service meaningful and fruitful, and your joy great.

Son, thank you for returning with honor!


P.S. – Let us know if there is anything you need last minute. I can transfer cash to your account.

SEE YOU THURSDAY NIGHT – Oh and by the way, I’d recommend sleeping on your flight from Johannesburg to London as soon as you finish your first meal. Stay awake while you are in London Heathrow, then sleep after your first meal on the London to Seattle flight. Once on U.S. soil, do your best to stay awake as that will get your body clock on U.S. time. Once you are home, I’ll set you up on some Melatonin to help you get your sleep cycles on track.

Dear Michael,
I can hardly believe that this is the last email I will be writing you as a missionary. I remember when you left. Dad and I came home from the airport and stood in front of the fireplace and held each other and cried. We then looked at each other and got on with our day. Like Jeff, I was so pleased to have you serving the Lord, and being obedient. It was hard to have you gone, I missed you, but I was always sustained by the knowledge that the Lord would protect you and that you were in His hands.
As the time went by I could see the growth that was taking place spiritually and emotionally. I am indebted to the Lord for what missions do for my boys. I know that the last two years that you gave in service to your Father in Heaven will bless your life everyday, FOREVER. I know that as difficult as it can be to leave behind family and friends, music, etc, it will be even more difficult to leave those whom you have grown to love, and the land that has become your home. But the Lord has a plan for you and knows that it is now time for you to move forward. To begin preparations for the most important time of your life. Becoming a husband and father, beginning your schooling and career, and serving the Lord for the rest of your life. Not necessarily in that order! I know that you are overwhelmed with emotions, that the transition can be intimidating, but you will be fine. You will find that you are still the same Mikey with a twist! I cannot wait to meet you!
I am so proud to your mother, you are such a joy to me. I marvel at your ability to love, your positive attitude, your willingness to be obedient, and the joy you get from life. So many others have been touched by these things, and I know you will have many more opportunities to share your talents with others. The Lord has given you these traits to serve him and others and you have done a wonderful job. Thank you for the example you have set for Kevin. You have no idea the impact you have had on him. He loves and admires you so much. He is so excited to go his mission and I know that your positive attitude and efforts you have given have influenced him so much. He loves you! We all do.
I have tried to bear my testimony to you over time. But I have to say that I am just beginning to realize what my testimony really is and let it guide me. I am not making much sense but I have grown spiritually so much just these last few months. I LOVE the temple, I love the Book of Mormon, I love the Prophet and know that he is the mouthpiece of the Lord. I love our family and am so grateful that we can be together forever as we live the gospel. I am so grateful for the knowledge that the Lord knows us. And because He knows us can protect, guide, and provide what is best for us. I am so thankful for the atonement. That it not only makes up for my sins and shortcomings but allows a way to overcome my sorrows and pains. I love the Lord Jesus Christ and know He lives. He is the Savior and Redeemer of ALL mankind. And He loves us.
And so my son, I write this last email to you and hope you know the love I have for you. My heart is overflowing at the thoughts of seeing you again. I hope that you will leave knowing that you gave your best, that the Lord is pleased and that you will return with honor.
I pray your trip goes smoothly, that you will be able to rest- I know Dad will give you some good tips- and that you will be safe. I am 0-2 on my missionaries getting home on the day they were supposed too- so PLEASE don't miss your flights and GET BACK TO YO MOMMA!!!!
I love you,

I want to say that BSU's loss has made such an impact on me. Rather the perspective of it has. It was sad, frustrating and nauseating. BUT, today we received news that Dallin Briner was killed in an auto accident, we will share more when you get home, we will know more, but it has made it all seem so trivial. Life goes on, time will heal, that is for BSU but a young man has been called home for a greater purpose. I am humbled by life's fraility and can only pray that I am ready when I am called home. Love ya!

I will post pictures of his return as soon as possible.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Getting Down to the End!

I won't hold him to crying but with a little "JEFFREY" magic, the "little boys" will get to go to the last BSU game!Can't wait for that!

Monday, November 22, 2010
if i get to go to that game I will cry. i will be so happy. PLEASE IF YOU CAN WORK SOMETHING OUT!
Yes i will do a musical number.... i actually have arranged quite the version of o holy night.... but either way it's fine.
Well this week was crazy!! we had stake conference. but it was just a broadcast from SLC and Elder Oaks gave a talk and just went off about unrighteous traditional practices such as Lebola and others. IT WAS SWEET! and then sister ann m. dibb spoke and gave a nice talk and then Boyd k. Packer spoke. it was super. they even enjoyed elder packers talk even though he isn't quite as vibrant these days. then later on in the day we went to an investigators house and he was watching T.B. Joshua on the tv. he's a crazy nigerian pastor who commiting priestcraft to the highest extent possible. And it was pretty funny. He sent out "wise men" do go into the crowd and "pray for people" he would touch their heads with his hands and some would just sit down other's would flail around. then the man asked me "is this magic?" hoping for me to say "Oh no this is a man of god" but i was just like. "No, it just looks like their sitting down." he wasn't too enthused with my answer eventually we got him to turn it off so we could share a message. the whole point of this story is to point out how blessed we are not to be going to a crazy Nigerian money making prosperity church.
But aside from that the week was great! i'm looking forward to a great final week of missionary work! seeings that next week will be P-day(packing day) on monday and then driving to joburg on tuesday and then leaving on wednesday! so we're just gonna work super hard and make it happen! I don't know if i ever told you about our investigator Sibahle?? well she's getting baptized this sunday! so i'll get to have one last hurrah my last sunday! and then in december they will get to clean up the rest of the ones we have on date! But i'll tell you some sweet stories about her and other sweet investigators next week!
By the way, the orange jerseys for BSU ARE AWESOME! that's what i think anyways. i still can't figure out why you wouldn't want to be putting up decorations next week on thursday evening?? haha
ok well i guess we can just have a chat about my classes when i get back!
But i've been debating just leaving a super short email next week. but maybe i can stretch and leave a mushy sweet awesome one. haha
I can't wait to preach some blood and thunder doctrine to the young men. they will won't even look at girls or alcohol or drugs ever again, they won't even think of looking!!!....... or i'll just talk about the glories of mission and build them spiritually. i guess i can decide when i get to that point. i'm just in a joking mood today, i guess.
well have a great week!
i hope all is well!
i'll try to keep the trunky bugs away this week. but next week..... eish.
the church is true!
-elder johnson

Monday, November 01, 2010

Hello hello hello family!
wow it sounded like a great week in the sports world. aside from us
getting jumped by other teams! Don't worry all things will work
together for our good.
ya that 12 year gap until the michigan state games is a little long. i
think there might be a kevin curtis jr. by then.
So everything is still cool here. We are having a great time teaching
and preaching and working as missionaries do! We have 15 people on
date for baptism now!
We finally saw conference this week! it was awesoem. the priesthood
session was incredible! Uchtdorf is the man and Pres. monson was great
as well.
I heard there was a big stir about president packer's talk. but.... i
don't really see why. What he taught was in harmony with the gospel.
sometimes people like to find reasons to be offended. "he who takes
offence when none is intended is a fool"
unfortunately we only had 4 investigators attend! And sometimes the
talks go right over their heads.... it's hard for me to really enjoy
the talks because the whole time i'm worried about how my
investigators are understanding them!
So i look forward to being able to watch and read them again later
when i can really focus on it!
But time is flying! so i guess i'm doing something right!
We are currently moving and it is hectic! the people who are in our
new place ar not leaving in time! so we are stranded at other
missionaries flats. and i haven't had a clean shirt for like 2 days
now! so hopefully by tonight we'll be in our new place!
We also had some great lessons this week, but norman and mogorosi went
out of town again!! he works for the military and they are keeping him
busy!! EISH!
So i'm very happy and life is good. the weather is getting a bit more
interesting it rains once a week now which is a pretty nice change
from the usual 40 degree celsius heat. But i hope everything goes
well! this week! have a good one!
the church is true!
-elder johnson

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Down to 2 more Emails

Today marks the 2nd to last Sunday that we will be needing to send emails to our missionary. At least for 6 more months!!! Kevin is hoping to have his papers in the weekend Michael comes home. He will put his availability date as April 30th! His call could come while he is home for Christmas break! CrAzY!!! But for now we are down to 11 days and 50 or so minutes til Michael comes home.

Monday, November 15, 2010

gee wizz. that was lots of birthday happiness. THANKS.
Ya Pres. and Sister Morgan are the senior couple in Gabs i see them almost everyday! they're sweet.
Well this week we had 11 at church! and a totally awesome solid new investigator named Sylvester! he brought his whole family to church! so that boosted our numbers! he's getting baptized in December.... so i miss it. but it's ok. WE had a crazy week! We drove to Mochudi to help the missionaries up there move flats and on the way up our Truck died! so we were stuck there all day that's why i didn't email until monday. but because of that the other missionaries who use the truck are dependant on us for lifts, one of them is Elder Hatch my former companion and his son Elder Bangerter. So it's been pretty fun. so the work is suffering a bit in our area because of it but it's keeping their area alive. and as ZONE leaders the Zone is our area so we have to sacrifice a bit!
Yes i got my package it was lekker!
The new companionship is great. except that it's almost over. elder rod is just a super chill awesome guy.
as far as school goes.... I like choir and the other classes i'm not sure about theatre though.... but i'll take a look at whats available and figure somethign out!!
Ugh.. the leadership council and zone conference were hectic. we had to make 2 30-45 minute workshops. 1 for each meeting. then book the chapel, book the food, provide the missionaries coming in from far away a place to stay. and just crazy stuff that ensues.
The job sounds sweet! I'll TAKE IT!
Well to be honest about my feelings about what lies ahead.... I'm scared... a little. I'll miss africa a bunch. But it's definately a new chapter that i'm looking forward to! There is a season for all things. I don't know if i will remember how to be sociable with women or if i'll be able to hug anyone. and i'll only listen to motab and watch BYU TV and the sabbath will start on saturday at sundown. and.... HAHA jk
and the college football world is in chaos. what else is new? gotta love the BCS.
I would love to teach the priests quorum i will whip them into shape!! even little tychster!
well the church is true! i'm loving these last few weeks! i'll definately keep up the pace!
-elder johnson

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Robbery? Are You Kidding Me???

Well, this is the FIRST "bad" thing Michael has told us about. I am certain there will be others that we will find out about when he gets home. I never worry about my missionaries while they are serving the Lord. I feel that they are in His hands and will be protected. Jeffrey had some wild stories that he told us once he was home and I am sure Michael will have a few. Keeping it quiet is the best thing for this momma!!
Tomorrow marks 3 weeks til he is home. I am so excited! With Thanksgiving right around the corner and all the preparations for the holidays, it will be here before I know it. Enough for now!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Well... I am PROUD TO BE A BRONCO. where at least i know i'm free. And i won't forget the BYU students who can't let their faces get hairy! haha
well just to get the foreshadowing to a great homecoming story out of the way.... I had to buy a new bag and scriptures this week and we are missing a window in our car! :) So... hopefully my home funds can keep me afloat at the end of the month!
but that's enough on that, i'll tell you the rest in a few weeks!
So what's new this week? well we had a great lesson with Uyapho this week! we are still working with him it's gonna be a long hard road but we're gonna get him even if i'm not there for it! We also have had some great new investigators who are progressing wonderfully. We finally found out some of the concerns that are keeping norman from being baptized. So hopefully we can iron some of those out before the 28th. We're still hoping for that to be a VERY BIG DAY!
Wow, i hope that my room will be in good shape still. I can't believe it will be the same?!?!
It sounds like boise state continues to dominate! i can't wait to get involved with the school and sporting events and all that jazz! speaking of jazz, i was even thinking about doing choir there. but we'll see.
Eish... it was a crazy week. definately one to remember. And this week we have SO MANY meetings. zone conference and leadership councils. and we pretty much have to set up everything. it's good to be busy it gives you little time to think about anything else.
I'm glad to hear that jeff is loving arizona. I would love to go there again. hopefully we'll be blessed with a BCS game there.
And yes the big b-day is coming. i can finally say i'm 21 and i'll be an official adult in the countries i'm serving in. Over here you're not a legal major until your 21.
I loved hearing dad's story from his mission about crazy land lords. At least people over there only hate you because you're a "mormon" Here people hate me because i'm white. but they love me because i'm a missionary. And police don't help here, they hinder. :)
I realized i never really heard to many stories about dad's mission. But i guess we'll be talking a lot about missions in a few weeks so that will be a good time to hear some.
well i hope all is well! it was raining like crazy today. i hope it continues! its a good change!
the church is true
-elder johnson

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Work is Going Strong!

Monday, November 01, 2010

Hello hello hello family!
wow it sounded like a great week in the sports world. aside from us
getting jumped by other teams! Don't worry all things will work
together for our good.
ya that 12 year gap until the michigan state games is a little long. i
think there might be a kevin curtis jr. by then.
So everything is still cool here. We are having a great time teaching
and preaching and working as missionaries do! We have 15 people on
date for baptism now!
We finally saw conference this week! it was awesoem. the priesthood
session was incredible! Uchtdorf is the man and Pres. monson was great
as well.
I heard there was a big stir about president packer's talk. but.... i
don't really see why. What he taught was in harmony with the gospel.
sometimes people like to find reasons to be offended. "he who takes
offence when none is intended is a fool"
unfortunately we only had 4 investigators attend! And sometimes the
talks go right over their heads.... it's hard for me to really enjoy
the talks because the whole time i'm worried about how my
investigators are understanding them!
So i look forward to being able to watch and read them again later
when i can really focus on it!
But time is flying! so i guess i'm doing something right!
We are currently moving and it is hectic! the people who are in our
new place ar not leaving in time! so we are stranded at other
missionaries flats. and i haven't had a clean shirt for like 2 days
now! so hopefully by tonight we'll be in our new place!
We also had some great lessons this week, but norman and mogorosi went
out of town again!! he works for the military and they are keeping him
busy!! EISH!
So i'm very happy and life is good. the weather is getting a bit more
interesting it rains once a week now which is a pretty nice change
from the usual 40 degree celsius heat. But i hope everything goes
well! this week! have a good one!
the church is true!
-elder johnson
The pictures are just a random ones that I found online. But they show the beauty of the land that Michael has been serving in. I know the next few weeks will be very full of service, teaching and goodbyes. It will not be easy. But I know Michael will finish strong and do his best to the very end.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Elder "MUSIC" Johnson

After this last email, I am now officially TRUNKY and can hardly wait for Michael to get home. He appears to have a healthy attitude about coming home. Some missionaries are so depressed and scared to return to "normal" life, but I think Mikey has a hand on it! I can't wrap my head around the fact that we only have FIVE more emails to write...with a 6month reprieve before Kevin leaves!But I won't complain. In the next few weeks I hope to get this blog in shape and add some things of interest. Then lastly add my testimony and feelings of the last 2 years. AmAzInG...the end is near!

Monday, October 25, 2010
well hopefully we can stick it to L-Tech! JARED SUPER STUD HUBER. i can't wait to see that kid!
Well... unfortunately norman and mogorosi went out of town this weekend so they couldn't be baptized yet.... so that put a wrench into the plans but we're hoping for this super plan to work where we'll have baptisms in between sessions of conference this week! i'm not too concerned about the AP magazine. you can just leave it for now and if i still want it when i get home i'll just extend it then.
they are preparing for the primary program in our ward as well. it's pretty sweet. the kids are singing so loud! it's awesome. they sound better than their parents do! people don't know how to sing the hymns here because half of the wards are recent converts! haha
I'm glad you enjoy my haircuts... i always think they look terrible! but i guess they look alright! As i always tell my companions "the shorter my hair is, the more my mom will love it" :)
I am planning on leaving a lot of things behind! i'll probably bring my suits and most shoes. but leave behind some pants and a lot of shirts. there are some people here who could use them much more than i could. my g's are ok. but maybe i could use some new ones when i get home.
that's awesome news about capital! and how are the bears i remember hearing that they are 4-1? that's awesome!
OH and my new companion is Elder Rodrigues. He's from San Jose California! he's pretty awesome. I am glad he's the one to kill the "legend" "music" johnson. there are two johnsons in our mission so they have Big johnson and music johnson. l am music johnson. haha
I SAW MY FLIGHT ITINERARY! UGHH... trunky letter! but it says i'm landing late on thursday the 2nd of december. if i could be released early friday morning that would be choice. i don't know if you guys have to arrange that or not??
Oh and how is the stuff for boise state going?
And my driver's lisence expires next month on the 16th is there anyway that you can extend it while i'm still here so that my companion doesn't have to drive everyday? haha if not it's ok.
Well everything is still great i'm loving it still. we're teaching some great people. I can't believe i only have 5 emails left. eish. well talk to you next week!
the church is true!
-elder johnson

Mon, Oct 18, 2010
JARELL ROOT! he's HUGE now! and that one kid that played wide-out when kevin was at capital!
OK OK OK I'm SENDING A PICTURE THIS WEEK!! it's from the baptism with maidah and refilwe! The bad news about them is that they moved to francistown this week. i was kinda sad. they were great! But we're still teaching maidah's cousin and her family so that's exciting. and Norman and Mogorosi are on track for baptism this week! We're very excited!
The boise state news is nice. We just need to keep winning big and have some teams lose. If we go undefeated and don't get in than people are going to MURDER the BCS.
Ya the goats were great. that part of Tlokweng is amazing! we're finding people all the time out there now. we just walk around and people flock to us! it's amazing. we're teaching this guy named Thapelo out there right now who is awesome. We put him on date for the 28th of november (my last sunday)
so that will be an exciting day. :)
New years road trip would be great! L.A. sounds like a blast. I have friends down that side now because of mission!
And as you can see i'm not too concerned about byu. I need to go to a school where we can actually win football games. :)
it just sounds like life is just rolling along back there!
And it is here as well... we have transfer meeting this week elder sicotte is leaving and the elder that will "kill me" will be known on wednesday! so be ready for that. I can't believe it's already here. when your a young missionary you never think it will come but then.... it does. it's pretty scary. but i'll be ok.
That's great that audrey came by. I know that she really loves talking to mom!
welp have a great week!
the church is true!
-elder johnson

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The Latest from JoBurg!

Oct. 4th
WOO! BSU WINS ANOTHER ONE. and byu slips further into the great apostasy. I believe that if all the student body will grow out moustaches then they can end it. Otherwise they need to lift the ban on beards. they just need to do something. I can't go to a school that loses to utah state like that.
As far as arizona goes... that could be a fun trip! either way it's cool.
It sounds like things are busy in boise. I hope the job thing goes ok for mom! i'm sorry about the video clip. i meant to send a picture!
i will get to watch conference in a few weeks! they are postponing it now so that the wards and branches can watch it at times that will be more convenient for the congregations.
and i hope that all those investigators will get baptized! i definately wanna help out those missionaries with some member present work with those ones! People just need to get baptized.... stop waiting.... just do it. like nike.
Norman and his son are on date! and we are going to playing a little bit of catch up to get them ready for this month... norman went outta town for the week so we are gonna be teaching like crazy this week!
I'm still trying to figure out what i'll do as far as rooming goes... kev has first dibs cause he's the little bro. but it would be sweet to room with marcus and kevin.
Ya just send the package. whatever is in there will be fine! if you don't send it now i might never get it!!! haha
BTW... I KNOW WHAT 65 DAYS IS!!!! But i didn't know until then. BUSTED! Mom, you are TRUNKY! Don't sleep in and start skipping study ok? haha
Things are definately sweet here. It's getting hotter and hotter every day. By the time i leave i will be as dark as the people i teach!
the church is true!!
-elder johnson
p.s. tell jeff congrats on the job! that's very exciting! I love AZ. i will definatly be excited to go visit him down there!

Sept. 27th
WOW!! that is so sweet! well i'm glad that we won our game regardless of slip ups!
it seemed like quite the event! go bsu!
and things are pretty sweet here as well! Norman is still doing well! his son asked us again when they can be baptized... next month i say!! haha
I saw that all of my byu stuff is done! that's very exciting! i think the atm card will suffice for the last few weeks of my mission and i'll pick up my debit when i'm at home! i'm glad that jack is paying his rent! he's doing some good things. I also heard that we have some apostasy in the other side of the family and trevor is now blessing and passing the sacrament without priesthood authority. i don't know maybe they do that kinda stuff in texas. hahaha that was quite hilarious.
the work is still sweet here! i have a picture from the baptism last week that i will send!
As far as new investigators go there isn't too much exciting things happening. i went to mochudi this week. we were going to slaughter a chicken for lunch but their chicken ran away! it was pretty crazy!
I am in a car! and i only have to ride bikes if i go on exchanges! oh the blessings of being a zone leader.
and i'm glad to here that kevin did the sensible thing and supported a team that actually wins. way to go! haha
But i will definately try to come home and give dad a run for his money in biking! i just rode the other day though and i've already lost some skill!
Welp, i hope everything goes well this week! the church is true! good luck with the daily grind. i was just telling someone the other day... i don't look forward to having to multi-task work school friends, everything again. mission is nice cause you can have a one track mind on the lord adn his work. which has blessings that the other thigns don't have!
-elder johnson

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Some Updates/Emails

I really feel the countdown is on! We are working on getting Michael's admission papers into BYU and BSU, and there is a lot of excitement for George and I as we think about how quickly December will be here. With school, football and life in full swing, the days go by so fast that I barely get a breather from emails and such and it is time to do it all again. Michael is doing very well and is working hard. I can tell he is determined to finish strong! I am so grateful for that. I wouldn't want him counting down the days like his mother is doing!! But I figure I am entitled to that. I hadn't added a counter to the blogs until we received his release date information. Such a model of restraint!

Sent: Monday, September 13, 2010

Well as long as we win, that's all we can ask for. I'm very pleased!
I wont discuss my feelings towards VT at the moment as that will cause me to lose the spirit for a month. haha
I LOVE THE CALLINGS FOR JEFF AND LAURA. I wish the church was well established enough for those here. We still struggle with having a functioning elders quorum presidency. haha
It's sad to hear that matt had to come home. i too hope he will be out again soon!
And oh my goodness.... jack looks like jeff and luke looks a but more like laura! that's cool.
The hammy is ok. i played today. so it was sharp.
sorry... i forgot to clarify elder sicotte is going home at the end of this transfer... sorry i didn't explain very well! :/
This week was a bit difficult.... Uyapho and Keneilwe ditched us! it was bad. but the bishop let us come over and do some missionary work with him!
This week was hectic. lots of ups and downs. we've been struggling getting people to come to church but it was a bit better this week we had 4. which is much better than 1. which is what we had for like 2 weeks straight.
it keeps getting hotter and hotter here. it's ridiculous. it's still just spring!
BTW i would still love to see some more pictures of the rest of the family.... the neices and nephews are great but... mom and dad and bros and sisters and others are ok too!
well i hope the byu thing goes ok!
Well i don't know if i have too much to talk about this week. My mind is kinda scrambled right now... our p-days are always crazy... no time for anything these days!!
hopefully maidah will be baptized this week! we're having a hard time with the daughters though! so we'll see what we can do, we've been fasting like crazy lately so we'll see what happens!!
the package will be sweet! and tell laura thanks for the email and pictures! she's the best sister in law that i have!
but ya have a great week!
the church is true!!
-elder johnson

Monday, September 06, 2010

ya the week has been crazy awesome galore! we had another powerful lesson with uyapho. he's definately becoming one of my favorites and will for sure be "my big project" before i leave! on thursday the bishop of the singles ward who stays just nearby is going to come with us to teach, it should be awesome. Remember the name Matswagotata(if you can) he's definately going to be a General Authority someday.
As well maidah is still on track for the 19th of september. her daughter should be home this week so we'll get her caught up and ready for interview by the end of this week! but we're racing against the clock. she's gonna be transfered up to francistown for work in a couple of weeks so we gotta have her ready before this month is over!
Ya soccer was rough.... i pulled a hammy today. and didn't play well but i got one goal.
ya the jerseys are a bit iffy.... we got hosed. but if we keep winning i guess it's just more money in our pockets!
i haven't heard from sydney very much at all actually! noone really writes me too much.... i'm just an old lonely sad sack these days! I didn't know anything about my bank card expiring but my card has been giving me troubles lately! definately find out about that one!
Oh and the greatest news is that our zone is improving a lot. that's one thing i had to adjust recently was to realize that it's not only my area that i'm in charge of but also the zone! and all of the districts are doing much better! so we're really happy about that!
faith and tendai are still doing well! yes they can and probably will do baptisms for the dead pretty soon! the only problem is getting down to jo'burg it's 4 hours away and with people tight on money this side it becomes a bit of a problem. but they'll be there a year from now for sure!
We are currently working on rebuilding our teaching pool again, that's kinda how it goes on mission i guess... so we'll see which new prospects we find!
college football sounds crazy as usual! i hope everything works out ok with the broncos. i am nervous as well!
but ya everything is sharp here. I got jerseys for the brothers and brother in laws.... but it sounds like kevin really wants a springbok jersey. so i'll try to get one for him.
But the church is true, for sure this time. I'm reading the book of mormon... and it continues to blow my mind. I think this will be the 3rd time on my mission. I've hit most of the standard works as well. all but the old testament.... apparently its not as relevant to missionary work. :)
-elder johnson

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Uncle "Monkey's" Monkeys!

Monday, August 30, 2010
alright alright alright! what a week!
WE had monkeys all over at our church on saturday! it was awesome!! i'll try to attach a picture if it doesn't take too long! Faith got confirmed. and both her and tendai are so pumped about the gospel and tendai wants to get to the temple! so we're stoked about that!
And i scored 2 goals today in soccer including the game winner which i scored on a header! it was epic!!
So i am pretty happy in other news... it's about 90 degrees today! summer is here and the girls are letting us know it. IMMODEST DRESS!! BAGOO! So i just put my blinders on and carry right on ahead.
The work is great Sister Maidah is doing awesome! she'll baptized with her daughters on Sept. 19! we're excited for that. WE found a few new father led families this week! one of them is very promising. as well i'm coming out of a kind of sleepy slump that i was in for a bit last week, but i'm starting to wake up, i swear if you have one bad night of sleep as a missionary it will haunt you for the rest of the week!
the package will be nice i'll still get it. jerky is always a winner. but you don't have to if you don't want to.
so i was just wondering if you guys want any souveneir type things i got the scarfs.... do you still want flags, african paintings, jerseys, botswana and South africa flag neck ties and what not. i just want to make sure that people will be pleased!
ya memorization is key.... we often start our sentences with quotes by Bruce, Mark E. Petersen, and especially our all time fav.... ELDER HOLLAND!
Speaking of quotes...."Amongst the general ranks of our family there is no brother/son more beloved than President Kevin Curtis Johnson, we praise him for the service he will render as an EQP."
Kevin is a stud and so is Jeff. Sometimes i get so pumped thinking about how sweet those guys are and the awesome example both of them are to me!
I'm glad mom talked to audrey, that's super. Tell her i never hear from her! i don't know what she's talking about! but nonetheless i will send her a nice little something soon.
How are jeff and laura doing? and when is the season opener for the broncos? soon i presume?
Well, i hope that everything goes well with school. I'm going to send the pictures this week but unfortunately it will cause me to cut my email short because it takes forever to send them, but i think you'll enjoy them!! :)
The church is true!
-elder johnson

Monday, August 23, 2010
WIND STORMS, CONFERENCE JUMPING?!?! things are getting out of hand back there!
I CANNOT BELIEVE THAT BSU IS NUMBER 3!! that's awesome. we still gotta do it though. :)
wow i'm glad that the young men are doing well. well i had pictures from the baptism but the computers at this place are being lame again. so i'll work on sending them next week! everything went well, faith is gonna be powerful. And once tendai gets back into the swing of things they'll be an awesome family in the ward.
The restoration Dvd is great. I've memorized the whole thing. "How will we know if we are saved" " well joseph, i don't reckon that god intends to save just some of his children but i do believe you can know where you stand" we quote them but then replace them with mission stuff. so instead it's " how will we know if we are transfered?" well elder, i don't reckon president will keep you here for more than two years but i do believe you can know where you stand. Remember what the transfer news says "pack and you will receive" "if you pack with faith president will book your flight."
sorry that was random and a lot of mission humour but i had to share. :)
But the work here is awesome. I will tell you of my most recent super spiritual moment. we're teaching a recent convert and her family her husband has been raised with traditional beliefs and doesn't believe in god. For 11 months missionaries have taught the family and had no success with getting him to pray. He loves to listen to us and everything but not to pray. But last night we had our part time missionary elder lebang who is a disabled guy in a wheelchair... but he's powerful. anyways.... as usual brother Ouyapho declined to pray as usual and chose elder lebang but elder lebang said ONLY if you close. and we say that all the time but it never works!
anyways the time came for the closing prayer we had just read in the book of mormon with the family and studies 3 nephi 11. but it was a nice lesson. Anyways this time ouyapho looked up and said that he would pray! AND IT WAS AWESOME!! he sounded like a member. At the end he was smiling and laughing and the whole family was so happy. it was so great and i was backing out the car as we left i had a manly crying moment. but oh, it was great.
We're hoping that this will be a big turning point and we'll be able to put him on date soon!
The pastor is kinda AWOL now. He's hard to work with and kinda crazy! but we had a fun time for a couple of weeks.
so this week has been awesome. don't worry i'm planning on having those Essays finished by the end of this week!
have a great week!! :)
-elder johnson

Monday, August 16, 2010

New Companion, great Emails and YES! He is coming home!!!

Michael is doing very well. The work is going strong and he is determined to finish strong. I would think nothing else of this young man.
Here are two new emails, a picture of him and his companion Elder Sciotte and the best news so far- HIS RETURN ITINERARY!! UnBeLiEvEaBlE!!!

August 9, 2010
ok here is the rundown for bots!
we speak english but... some people are better than others! But setswana is a bit tought but i learn little by little.
2.Gabs is small small small compared to jo'burg! There are no stakes as of yet. Botswana is still under the roodepoort stake in jo'burg which is 4 hours away! broadhurst is a part of the town. church membership is 95% black. with a few coloureds and asians and whites in the mix!
the make up of our zone is 6 sisters and 10 elders and a senior couple!
elder sicotte is from draper utah!
he's one transfer ahead of me!
But the work is awesome here!
Faith is one of the ladies we are teaching her husband tendai is a less active member! But she should be getting baptized next week sunday the 22nd!
And we're gonna try to have tendai baptize her!
Also we started teaching the mother and sister to one of our recent converts this week and they both came to church! which was exciting. so we're hoping to put them on baptism date this week. We also had the chance to go to visit another church on Saturday, The Gethsemane Healing Church. the pastor is one of our investigators. it was the funniest thing ever. it was just a choir practice but he was still dancing everywhere and giving mini sermons and everything. it was entertaining. i thank the lord that im a member of this church. especially when i see things like that. :)
i can already tell it's gonna be hotter than hades here in a few weeks! i can already feel the heat!
Botswana is awesome! it definatly is wild here! i saw a warthog and monkeys the other day in my area! And we play soccer on dirt fields there are very few grassy soccer pitches here. very african style!
Unfortunately it's proven hard to get pictures loaded up. so i'll keep working on that.
Yes mom, i love the closing quotes! don't worry! i enjoy hearing it every week! at the end of the email you told me to Go-Well and Stay Well. and i shall!
Dumela is hello, legai is how are you!
and i'm already working on the app stuff. it will hopefully be finished in a few weeks!
probably by the end of august i'll send it to you!
It's going to be a lot of fun, i plan on plunging ahead in the work for sure! we found 14 new investigators last week! which is very exciting. so as always i'm working hard... which is really the least that you can do. if you're not working hard as a missionary than there is something wrong.
But that's about all from me this week!
stay well!
the church is true!
-elder johnson

August 16, 2010
RAPELLA NAKO!(prayer time!)
i don't know how to say too much in setswana it's still a work in progress. Ya Pastor Ulthwang came to another fireside this week! but he can't come to church because of his church. He's gonna be a tough nut to crack. but we'll see what we can do! :)
Wow high adventure sounded awesome, who went? How are Tanner and Corbin and those kids doing?
The new "digs" are still sweet! responsibilities are managable! i being a zone leader and in most things in life i always keep the following story about Harold B. Lee in mind it goes kinda like this " a man came into President Lees office one day and boldly pronounced that the church was wrong to make members wait a year after baptism to go to the temple and that he had received a revelation that said that it needed to be done away with, President Lee's response on it was this " 'any man who takes himself that seriously is not fit to receive revelation from the lord' "
So i always keep that in mind. Take your calling seriously and but never take yourself to seriously lest we become prideful :)
Faith passed her interview! and will be baptized this week! so we're excited for that! as well keleboga's mom and sister are both on date for baptism! and they are doing very well.
We're still workin hard on building up the teaching pool we have some great new investigators the great thing about The wards here is that they are all fired up about missionary work and we have 2 or 3 activities a month to which we can invite investigators too! In my last areas we usually never had any....
But we talked with the bishop the other night and chatted about the work here! and he hinted that there will probably be a stake here before dec. 1! so that will be great! i look forward to that!
We had some new training this past week they've kinda expanded on PMG and made it more effective. it was really great we're going to be having training meetings every wednesday for the next week. it will be great the first one was awesome. brought back some greeny fire into me. lots of new things to try and apply. so i enjoyed that a lot!
i've attached a picture of elder sicotte and i that we took this morning so we can send you pictures of how great we look! haha
to finish off, we had that fireside on saturday and it was a musical fireside. a bunch of members of the stake from roodepoort came and put it on. but it was truly a great experience the singing wasn't too amazing but the spirit that was felt as the testified of the restoration was definately amazing! i loved it a lot. the church is true!
have a great week!
-elder johnson

Return Travel Itinerary For JOHNSON/MICHAEL FORREST - 01Dec - YAC5LO

FAX : 801-240-5115

Because this was so long, I just gave you all a tease. But it really is happening!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

The picture is of Mochudi, the village he references in his email.
"Travellers with a taste for the wild side will relish Botswana."
This is Michael's new area! Need I say more. Sounds like the perfect place for him to finish out is mission. Here are few more descriptions of Botswana,
"Beyond the narrow eastern corridor where the majority of the population is concentrated, Botswana is a largely roadless wilderness of savannas, deserts, wetlands and salt pans. Skinflints and softies beware: this remains a destination for the intrepid, well-heeled traveller."
Gaborone, estimated population 186,000 (2001), is the capital of Botswana. Gaborone is located at 24°40' South, 25°55' East.
The old Gaberones became a suburb of the new Gaborone, and is now known as "the Village". The abbreviation "Gabs" has survived as the abbreviation for Gaborone and is sometimes used in speech.
So Elder Gabs now lives in the "GABS"- PERFECT!!!
We gave him a hard time about not telling us where he was going and along he didn't know. I am anxious to hear what it is like and how the work is going. From his email, it sounds like it will be WORK. He has been rather spoiled his whole mission. The members have really taken the responsibilty of "finding" and the Elders then do the "teaching". Now it sounds like he may be doing more finding and organizing. I think he has more responsibility as a zone leader too, which will make things interesting.
Enjoy the email.

Monday, August 02, 2010
OH boy oh boy. That was a great email! lot's of stuff is happening. well at this moment i feel like Pahoran answering in response to captain moroni's letter. So, after much assumption of my negligence to tell you where i was going i will tell this unto thee. We don't find out where we are going until the day of transfers now. So i couldn't have told you unless i attempted to prophesy. but i will tell you this i went to the one area that i almost thought would be impossible for me to go!! the language is Setswana, the people are motswana's and the place is botswana!!! So i have now officially served my mission in two different countries!! it's kinda like starting mission all over again!! The reason why i wasn't going to go was because of my visa extension stuff my passport wasn't in the mission office so i was on the "do not transfer to bots" list. But i am serving in the capital of botswana in Gaborone in a place called broadhurst! we also have the only sister in the Jo'Burg mission in our zone! so that's pretty crazy. But this area is definately going a bit slower than my last one. So hopefully that can change in the next 4 months! We've already worked had i actually had big gaps in my schedule for the first time in a long time. it was..... weird! haha
But i am having a lot of fun aside from trying to cross the border, we were stuck at the border for 4 hours on wednesday night. and had no money to pay customs for any of the stuff we were transporting it was very difficult so we left our trailer at the border and came back for it the next morning once we got some much needed pula from the senior couple. Unfortunately my rands are worthless now.
My companion is Elder Sicotte from Utah. And like me he plays a little guitar so we should be creating some great musical numbers in the coming months!! :)
I'm excited for the boise state news in the coming months if we can beat V-Tech i think we'll be ok!
Additional info: There are 3 wards in Gaborone. Including the only singles ward in the entire continent of africa! We are aside to the family ward in Broadhurst though. We live in a house not a flat. it's awesome, lots of room. As far as the investigators go i think we'll have a baptism by the end of this month. and i don't know very many of the other inv's or members!
It's definately going to be a great next few months. lots of work to be done.
I can't believe that kevin will be on mission in may! if the stars are aligned and he gets to come to my mission! he'll know all the missionaries i served with!! :0
I don't know if there is too much more to tell you! i'll let you know more about the work here when i find out about it. The big moment will definately be when i go to mochudi for exchanges. its a small village outside of gaborone. the elders stay in a shack! haha so i'll let you know about that. T.I.A!!
your lesson in setswana today is: Dumela-Hello, Legai-how are you?, Riteng(roll that R!!!)-Fine!, Salasinhle-Stay Well. Tsmiyasinhle-go well.
have a great week!
Die Kerk is Waar!
-elder johnson
p.s. i was gonna send pictures but our email shop is not the best! so i'll try another time!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Last Transfer to... WHERE???!!!!

In true Mikey style he writes to tell us he is being transferred BUT doesn't tell us where!
I can tell he is very excited not to have to ride a bike anymore and that being Zone Leader wasn't necessarily in his plans, but he will do a great job at whatever he is asked to do. That is just how he works. It is hard to believe that we are down to his last area and that his next transfer will be HOME!!! George and I are both trying not to be too "TRUNKY" but it is very exciting. We have loved seeing the growth that has taken place in Michael and are eternally grateful for the protection and safety that he has been blessed with. BUT it is time for that boy to come home!! Four months...I can do this! The closer it gets the more "out of my body" I will be, so I will do my best to contain myself...for now!
Thank goodness for football season! It will be a great distraction and help. Can I just say... GO BRONCOS! I hope they give Michael the opportunity to see them play in the post season. I know they will.
So now we wait. Hopefully it will occur to him to let us know where he is and I know that wherever that is they are in for a ride. Elder Michael F. Johnson will take that place by storm!
(Just ran across a site for his mission and found quite a few pictures of him. I will randomly choose a few over the next few weeks OR put them in a slideshow. I think he is playing the guitar a man gave him, while visiting him in a rest home. I believe he still has the guitar and will be able to bring it home!)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Elder Johnson givin some TOUGH LOVE

This is possibly Michael's last week in his current area. Hard to believe that this could be his LAST transfer. I wonder where he will end up?!
Great email and amazing that he is baptizing so wildly!! One thing for sure, he LOVES the work, and LOVES the people.

Monday, July 19, 2010
YEBO WE HAD 4 BAPTISMS!! Not all the ones that we expected! The shipilanes had to go to a funeral so angie couldn't be baptized but Nomsa, Nkululeko, Lehlogonolo, and Thandiwe! now.... thandiwe is an interesting case... we almost dropped her two weeks ago because she was being very difficult and just didn't seem interested, we'd been teaching her for like 3 months and we seemed to be stalling. So a couple of weeks ago i just said.... " we'll schedule another appointment with you when you come to church. and as well let us know when you want to be baptized" to which she responded " well i won't be coming to church" then i said "k then i guess we'll miss you next week then" Anyways.... she came to church two weeks in a row and last week on tuesday said she wanted to be baptized on sunday! i was skeptikal but when i asked her about keeping the commandments she said she was. So she was interviewed the next day and passed and was baptized yesterday! so that was a pleasant suprise. I was always super hard on her but she needed it. and it worked!! :)
And the water heater is still broken in the chapel so the baptisms were freezing!! The ladies both screamed!
But it was an awesome day! i was so happy! if these are gonna be my last baptisms then I'll be proud and happy about it!
We get transfer news on saturday! so i'll let you know what's happening on monday!!
As far as school goes BSU and BYU are the tops.... but if i have to do night classes or weird stuff like that i'm ok with just accepting my fate as a bronco. haha
But mission life is legit! we've had to walk so much lately.... it's ridiculous the brakes are broken on the bikes and it hasn't been too ayoba!
Well hopefully you guys enjoy the pictures! have a great week!
the church is true!
-elder johnson
p.s. we're going to the temple this week! i'm pumped!

He titled his pictures "PAIN" and "SMILE"- fitting. And oh so adorable!

Friday, July 16, 2010

4 1/2 Months to Sexy Plan- is that Mission Approved?

So the great debate amongst the family now is how long it will take Michael to find his "eternal companion", as he likes to put it. Some think it will take him 2 years, others think it will be within 2 years. All I ask is that it is NOT 2 weeks!!!! It is hard to believe that we are even at the point of talking about these sort of things. By the time school starts and BSU has played their first game, I will be able to say he has only 90 days!! That is incredible! I love hearing about his progress with investigators and the experiences he is having. I LOVE having a missionary out, as it blesses our family so very much. But I have to admit that I am getting very excited to welcome him home.
He will have plenty of new adventures awaiting him and I know the Lord is pleased with the efforts he has put forth to serve in the Kingdom and that he will undoubtly RETURN WITH HONOR!
I honestly think he may have a future in developing a new "weight loss program"! Maybe his will be the new Weight Watchers.
I guess we will have to "weight" and see!!!

July 12,2010

CURRENT SITUATION: Mission Gut, Improving facial hair, overall physically unfit.

IMPERATIVES (what needs to happen):
1.Lose my awesome man belly. And become a total hunk of a stud.
2. start to look good and be able to grow some awesome stubble upon my face.

3.get good at soccer!
1. Play Soccer at least twice a week
2. Breakfast= eat like a king
3.Lunch=eat like a prince
4.Dinner = eat like a slave
5. Ride bikes a lot!
6. Shave everyday (I pretty much have to now)


It's all about planning and then executing.... executing is the key. I only played soccer once last week and I ate way too much kota! So I’m getting back on track. Of course the plan can be adjusted to whatever the desired results... mom may not want a beard. haha
But silliness aside, THIS WEEK IS GONNA BE HECTIC! We were informed by the bishopric that we need to move all of our baptism for the 25th up to the 18th of July…. So we have to get all of the people interviewed this week! So we’re going to be scrambling getting all of them ready! We’re hoping for 4 baptisms! So it will be a great day! As well we had an amazing lesson with siphiwe’s family! BABA WANTS TO GET BAPTIZED AND MAMA WILL as well! It was awesome Jackie just told everyone in the house to stop what they were doing and then he talked about how he knows his children have made the right choice. That there is no other church like this one on earth, it was awesome! We are both so pumped so they’ll hopefully be getting baptized in august!
Nomsa passed her interview on Friday! So that was great! She reminds me so much of Siyanda, the girl that we taught last year in bedfordview who got baptized. She’s just been a super humble person who is ready for the blessings of repentance and baptism.
As well I did the package I just forgot to tell you! It’s been awesome. The jolly ranchers are sweet. And most of all….. RESES PUFFS!
As far as transfers go…. I think I might be getting transferred soon… the next one is two weeks from Wednesday. We’ll see I’m definitely going to miss hospital view. It’s been great!
Oh the other awesome thing that happened was that we went to the temple for baptisms! It was great we went with our recent converts! I have pictures I’ll send them next time!!
As far as post mission plans go it will happen as follows: 1. Go to School… I’m starting to like the idea of studying a bit of IT and then getting a business degree as well…. You can’t go wrong with business and technology! 2. MAKE MUSIC. 3. Begin the Wife Hunt.
That’s kind of all I got. Right now.
But life is good here! The work is moving forward we ahd another great week I think we had 12 investigators at church! Which is sweet.
I’m glad to hear that the ward is having sweet activities! WE need to have more here in our ward in h.view!
Well that’s all for this week folks!!
The church is true!
-elder johnson

July 5, 2010
Wow it sounds like you guys are having a lot of fun over there!!
As far as The SLC temple goes... i'm up for it! I want to see a live session because it is true that's how it has been done from the beginning before they had fancy projectors and screens. that would be legit!
It's always sweet to see pictures of the family! you guys all look awesome!
I'll be sending some pictures this week i believe! so be ready for that!! :)
My 4 1/2 months to sexy plan is working out marvelously. Unfortunately though it causes extra attention from the township girls.... BA GOO! Luckily though, it's not a temptation just a little annoying. haha
If you stay focused on the work and your purpose those type of things don't give you too much trouble. That's something that every future missionary needs to know....KEVIN! haha
as our dear leader of the past Ezra T. Benson said "THE SECRET OF MISSIONARY WORK is.... WORK!" I'll quote the whole thing for you another time!!
Luckily i was able to get the office to refund me!! it was nice.
As far as Soccer stuff goes world cup is almost over and all the memorabilia is on the streets! so i'll be able to score some scarves and jerseys and flags easily! just remind me who wants what!!
The work is awesome.... Nomsa is getting baptized in a couple of weeks! Angie (siphiwe's sister) is getting baptized on the 25th! And she bore her testimony in sacrament meeting Siphiwe burst into tears. he was so happy. That family is going to be great in the gospel... now we got the kids so it's time for the parents!!!
I'm kind of excited for world cup to be over... it's been alot of fun catching bits and pieces of games and the atmosphere but it's a big distraction for my companion so once it goes things should be a bit better!
but this area is getting better and better all the time.... If there is one thing that i have to be proud of on my mission it's that i've generally left area's better that i found them. I could care less about leadership or anything thing else if the work is happening!
The scariest thing that happened this week was at Zone Conference when president poulsen asked me in our interview " so elder what are your plans for after mission??" That made me realize that i am an OLD OLD MISSIONARY MAN! my whole mission i've said " I've got 20 months to think about that.... I've got a year..... i've got 8 months.... but now.... yikes!!
Just keep working. It's funny every missionary goes into denial of his trunkiness and then over compensates for it.... i'm kinda doing it a bit now.... i just talk about work work work work all the time. if i work then i keep trunkiness at bay! haha
well that's about all for this week! THE CHURCH IS TRUE! have a great WARM july week!
-elder johnson

June 28, 2010
Ya my illness was just a little bit of bronchitis type stuff! but i'm doing much better my only concern is that i had to spend 160 rand on medication! i don't know if the mission can refund me or not, so if not a bit of money would be nice! But aside from that everything is great!
Charmaine got baptized!! once again i got to baptize! But i'm pretty sure this will be my last one i do personally. As far as the work goes Our new stellar investigator Nomsa came to church yesterday! and her brother sifiso came as well! we actually had 13 at church which is pretty great! Siphiwe's whole family came it sounds like his sister wants to be baptized next month so that will be exciting! from there we just need to center the work on his parents. they're pretty tough.
World cup is still crazy! i've got the fever! and i'm not talking about jungle fever. We've played so much soccer lately! i love it!
As far as our investigators go.... we a lot of people on date now! But we still need to get them in the water! It's crazy every time we teach nomsa we give her a commitment with a promise and it's crazy how whenever she keeps the commitment the promise comes true. haha
We told her to pray about being baptized, we came back to teach her and she said " When i prayed i felt that feeling... i can't explain it but i knew it was the right thing, i didn't know if i was supposed to keep praying or if i should stop..."
it was great! So she's totally pumped about everything! charmaine's baptism has also been great because her mother lungile has been a bit less active in the past but since we started teaching lungile has been much more excited about church and she was definatley touched at the baptism! she said it reminded her of her own! So that's been great to see the gospel blessing their family! Charmaine was so excited and happy to be baptized, it was super.
But it's great to hear that the girls are still a handful! I'm glad to hear they still talk about me.
How is the ward doing are we still rolling along? How are the youth doing? OH and how is trevor fike doing?? If you can find a way for me to get into contact with him i'd be very pleased!
but have a great week!

the church is true!!
-elder johnson

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Vuvuzelas, Baptisms, Soccer, and Teaching

These are the scriptures Michael mentions in his email. Thought it would be nice to know what he was referencing.

Jacob 1:19 And we did amagnify our office unto the Lord, taking upon us the bresponsibility, answering the sins of the people upon our own heads if we did not cteach them the word of God with all diligence; wherefore, by laboring with our might their dblood might not come upon our garments; otherwise their blood would come upon our garments, and we would not be found spotless at the last day.

Moroni 9:6 And now, my beloved son, notwithstanding their hardness, let us labor adiligently; for if we should cease to blabor, we should be brought under condemnation; for we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the kingdom of God.

Sent: Tuesday, June 22, 2010 2:02 AM

That's awesome i'm proud of him! his roomates sound..... interesting... it sounds like someone needs the RMTC..... Cough. BROTHER MISSIONARY RAZOR COUGH
Some missionaries don't get the concept that there is life after mission....
But as far as my life on mission is going now... it's great! we're going to have a baptism this week! and july as i have said before is going to be stellar! We taught the nene's on wednesday! it was awesome! they are a great! family we are going to see them again this Wednesday!
Norman and Jermina are good. Norman came to church but jermina didn't... they'll get there for sure though!
My new companion is from UGANDA his name is Elder Higenyi! He's an interesting guy. Ugandans are renowned for their stubborness. But so far he's been great. He's very bold. which is good. He has knee problems though which makes it hard to ride bikes so we're gonna be doing a lot of splits throughout the weeks we're together!
We've had some awesome lessons the past few days though we finally had a breakthrough with one of our families... aptly named the Smiths! They go to a church that was founded by the baba's family but he's now starting to see that things are wrong with the church and that there is contention and false doctrine.... elder higenyi then jumped on that and powerfully (and boldly testified) that such things are not part of the church of christ. it was awesome i gave a 15 minute discourse about the restoration of the priesthood and then boom! elder higenyi dropped the spirit bomb! It was an awesome lesson!
It's crazy though, mission does start to take a toll on you.... i've been sick for the last week and haven't had time to rest, i'm quite sick of being tired and tired of being sick, But if i have strength to work...i must work. if i stay at home i will have Moroni 9:6 and jacob 1:19 haunting me. but it's been amazing to see the hand of the lord in all these things cause with out him i wouldn't have made it anywhere close to where i am now.
World cup is crazy... when possible we do ask investigators and member to turn off the games but if not possible we'll do what the brazillians do and teach between breaks!
Elder Higenyi loves soccer! too much. It's quite a distraction so i'm working on helping him with that!
But i hope that everything is great back there! The family sounds awesome...as always!
the church is true!
-elder johnson
p.s. i cannot for the life of me, remember my password.... i tried to see if i could get it sent to me from Byu.edu but the question that i left for myself to answer to get it, i cant remember the answer to!!

Sent: Monday, June 14, 2010 4:21 AM

Once again... kevin looks so awesome in his rugby uni. Just make sure there is no ketchup around..... haha And the neices and nephews.... i am so pumped to see those kids!!
Yes world cup is officially here.... it's crazy!!! Oh my word... VUVUZELAS(THE HORNS) EVERYWHERE!!
And yes it is quite hard to teach i'm pretty sure i've seen parts of everygame so far generall you get to the appointment have a friendly chat for a minute then when its time to teach they say "Ah, we'll watch first then we'll teach...." so usually we can convince them that they can watch later but other times...not so much. We're working the best we can around games so we'll see how it goes over the next week!
But we got to see the bafana game! it was awesome! we had an activity with some of the members in the ward!
AND THE USA.... what can i say... we looked pretty good from what i saw and heard!
But ya i can get lots of memorbilia! it's all on the streets! i can get a scarf and jerseys and flags and vuvuzelas and whatever! So i'll pick up a flag this week and i'll work on the scarfs later!
I haven't seen too many tourists but i know that they are here. Noone really comes to the township... except the people who live there and.... us.
I can't wait for kevin to be on mission he's gonna be an awesome missionary!
But yes...i'll definately be home before he goes! I would lose it otherwise i'd miss that kid too much!
As far as the work goes.... Norman and Jermina are still doing well however we missed them at church because one of norman's friends got attacked and was in the hospital.... so that wasn't too great. But we're gonna see him tonight!
As well we had a random father and mother and two kids just come to church! it was sweet! so we're gonna start teaching them on Wednesday!
We had a good lesson with Rachel last night... she's a cool lady we teach she's the sister to a member in the ward!
This other guy named sibusiso tracked me down two weeks ago before email in Kempton. and Asked me where the church was in tembisa! and i told him and he didn't come to church that week.... so we forgot about him but then he came this sunday and was super pumped!!!
so that was really cool. I'm thinking july is gonna be a sweet month for us here! oh and elder van vuuren is being transfered this week! So i'll have a new companion! i don't know who it is yet though so you'll find out next monday!! :)
Ohh and charmaine the girl who we met last week who hasn't been baptized will be baptized on the 27th of june! :)
That's awesome that mr. simmonds is coaching football.... freshman team??? eish! haha
Well hopefully this email was sweet for you guys! a bit longer than last week eh??
Things are great! i'm very well aside from a nice bit of flu last week!
-elder johnson
ps. music that is needed... motab..... classical! NO EFY! I CANNOT STAND EFY MUSIC!! if i hear one more efy song i will end my hearing abilities for life! THANKS!

Sunday, June 6, 2010


May 31,2010
Jeffrey Got Baptised! it was awesome! (picture attached)
I'm pretty sure his favorite person from the scriptures is the apostle paul....because every time he makes any public statements in church he starts by saying "Greetings in the name of the lord jesus" it's awesome as well.
We have some awesome new families that we're teaching! We're teaching this guy Norman and his wife Jermina. Norman is friends with this dude in our ward and he was invited to church the past two weeks and then came this last week as well anyways when we had our first visit with him last week wednesday he said " I've come to church the last two weeks, so far, so good. I'll probably get baptized in a few weeks" So all we did was give him a date and now we're gonna work on having his wife ready as well! it's gonna be sweet!
We also did an acoustic guitar duet of "Lead Kindly Light" for the baptismal service and the chapel burst into applause.... At first i was taken back but then i realized....T.I.A. (this is africa) it was great!
It's been really crazy being in township the last few months and just seeing how many people can be prepared for the gospel in humble circumstances.... it's amazing.
So it's been a very great week! Oh man i'm pumped for that package! usually stuff takes 3-4 weeks to get here!
Well not too much else to say we're keeping busy and working hard! i'm loving it here!
The Church is True!
-elder johnson!

May 24,2010
Wow... i really hope that i won't be called as a bishop for a long long long while. It sounds so hectic!!! Every week i either get "It's been a long day, or i am very tired" Maybe i'll just get called as a door greeter, Ward Aerobics Instructor or 3rd counselor in the ym's presidency or some other awesome calling that we get to have in the states due to our large membership numbers! Maybe i'll be ready for it in the millenium, i'll be bishop of the Boise 1,679th ward!
Eish it sounds like the ward is changing dramatically! I'm glad Kevin loves and respects me! I knew that if i "bore with patience mine afflictions" that he would come around! he's a stud. i love that kid.
Well Jeffrey passed his baptism interview! so we'll be having another baptism this week! which will complete our may goal of 3! June we're going for 4. so hopefully we'll get there!!
Siphiwe's little sister came to church on sunday and she loved it! the young women fellowshipped like mad and it sounds like she's gonna come back next week. As well Brother & Sister Shipilane (siphiwe's parents) both say that they know that what we're teaching is true! so now comes the process of separating them from their church and bringing them into christ's! So we're definately excited for that family!
Church is still getting awesome!! right now we are functioning with only a bishop and first counselour they released the second counselor because he was effectively less active. :/
But the bishop is really putting forth his best effort and it's making a huge difference! The ward is slowly coming alive!
But i'm definately loving it here! and i'm looking forward to that package!
Keep up the good work!
Have a Baie lekker week!
-elder johnson

"When i go home i'm going to adopt 10 kids and make them work on the farm, we just really need people to work on the farm."
-elder sande
Just as the Sande family needs help on the farm so does the lord need help in building his kingdom. hopefully as members we can put forth the effort that the effort that the lord expects of us in all aspects of our membership. let us not only magnify our calling but also magnify our membership!

May 17,2010
Well....what can i tell ya???
the work continues to press forward!! Our recent convert siphiwe is killer right now and is a missionary machine! He came out teaching with us twice this week and we taught so many sweet new people! We did splits which is awesome because we can do twice as much work in the same amount of time!
Oh man, once again. the neices and nephews sound awesome!
I'm glad to hear that stake conference was powerful!
WE had a cool sacrament meeting. i was asked about 5 minutes before sacrament meeing to give a talk about the aaronic priesthood... so i a.s.d'd(as the spirit directs) a sweet talk! it was great. there were also some leaders from the stake there both of which are from Bedfordview and Edenvale wards so that was interesting! it was crazy hearing other white people give talks in sacrament meeting. I heard the first 5 syllable words that i have heard in a long long time!
But the ward here is improving so much the chapel is actually starting to look full. This is really an area where i've been feeling that we've been making a difference. most area's i just teach and baptize some people but here we're are seriously building the lord's kingdom! it's been awesome! We've set a lot of goals and have been able to achieve many of them. it's been great!
WEll i'm going to attach some pictures on this one! from last weeks baptisms!
We're hoping to have one more in the month of may on the 30th! so we're very excited about that!
I have also continued to have some amazing expereinces as i have begun reading the book of mormon again! it's been awesome! i love that book!
Well the church is true!
have a good week!
-elder johnson
p.s. here is my elder sande quote of the week! elder sande is this hilarious elder from Zimbabwe in our flat.
" I remember when i was at home and i was a loser, i was always hiding my identity. When i go home i will never be a loser again i will never hide my identity as a member of the church." -elder sande

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Last three emails! Mother's Day talk

We ended up having to wait til late Sunday night to talk to Michael. It was actually early Monday morning for him. He had only been up for about 20 minutes when we got through. But we had a wonderful talk and he sounded so good! A little funcky accent that made me smile!!! Same old Mikey! It was SOO good to hear his voise. I have often said throughout his mission that I wished time would slow down a bit and that he could stay out a little longer just so he could keep having the experiences he is having. WELL... I have changed my mind. I am ready for the boy to come home! December 1st can't come soon enough. I want him to enjoy every minute, but I really do miss him and it will be wonderful to have him home. He is so happy, loving the work and is doing a wonderful job. He was able to actually baptize a week or so ago. TWO!!! He was pretty stoked about that. He said they work from like 10am to 8:30pm. everyday!!! I couldn't believe it was our last time to talk to him. It was HEAVENLY!!!
Enjoy the emails.
Elder Johnson-yo momma loves you.

May 10th
Wow... well it was nice talking to you all!!
Thanks for the pictures i love them!! especially kevins! he is such a stud!!
Pictures are always welcome and appreciated!
Well... I don't know if there is too much to tell about!
Here are somethings that i would like:
1. Jerky
2. Breath Mints
3.Reses Pops. if possible
4. Pictures.
5. Music,
6. Other sweet delicous american goodies! (JOLLY RANCHERS PLEASE!)
7. any other nice suprises!

-Elder Johnson

May 3rd-
EMERGENCY!!! I'm supposed to call home this week! so what im gonna try to do is to call on sunday night here, which will be sunday morning around 9 or 10. if that doesn't work then your gonna have to be troopers and i'll call monday morning here which will be around 9:30 at night over there! :/
Aside from that bit of intense news! things are good here!
we're for sure going to have 2 baptisms this week! :)
as well both me and my companion are staying here. But they are whitewashing the other elders in our flat. so we have to help out a lot with the new elders cause they are going to have no idea whats happening in their area and who is who and everything. Some missionaries have a hard time realizing they aren't in high school anymore. They don't realize that young women are now inadament objects that you say hello to and thats the end of the relationship. hence the whitewashing. bleh.
Anywho... me and elder van vurren are having a killer time! working hard and doing the work. It's been sweet.
I'm so excited for my new nephew! Luke is gonna be a stud just like his dad! (and uncles and grandpa)
Does this mean an HDTV is in the works?!? haha i tell stories about dad and the tv all the time to people here because people in the township prefer having a nice tv to a nice house and so you go into these little shacks and they have bigger tv's than we do!
Oh man i miss gandalfos!
WE haven't heard too much news from the stake yet. it sounds like the changes will be another month or so. WE got a new ward mission leader! it's a kid from Zimbabwe named stanton! he is a stud! he doesn't speak zulu or very good english! so he has a hard time communicating with anyone! but he loves the work and loves the gospel! so he's gonna be great!
Aside from that there isnt too much news to tell about!
have a good week! talk to you on SUNDAY!!
the church is true!
-elder johnson

April 26th-
Hello!! YES WE FINALLY SAW CONFERENCE! it was sweet! :)
Dieter F. Uchtdorf is now tied with jeffrey r. Holland as "my boy". Uchtdorf had some awesome talks and Holland laid down the law! LUST IS SHAMEFUL AND STEALTHY! good stuff! The minute he said " it grieveth me" i was like "oh boy here it comes!!"
It was definately a power conference!
As far as the work is going! we're going to have two people interviewed for baptism this week! So we're pumped for that! and then we're hoping for a couple of more baptisms the week of the 30th! so may should be a good month! june should be even better! And who knows....July could be intense! I went on exchanges and was stuck in the rain on bikes in super cold weather in a muddy township with a young Kenyan Elder...... it was a rough night. but we had a good time!
The pictures i'm sending you are one of me with my son in our final minutes as a companionship! The other is with samuel and tankie! WE had just a family home evening with them my 2nd week here! She is a member and were working n getting him bapped! He's draggin his feet though!
The last one is me with my sweet glasses and suspenders pretty much "the look"
and yes the guy in the picture is my companion! the two white guys!
well we just heard from the stake high council that there are gonna be some big changes in our ward in the coming weeks! pretty scary eh? So we'll see what happens!
Don't worry mom... the food is ok. It sounds sketchy but it's safe!
What else is there to tell about??
This week was pretty chill! WE're just working hard! Even on weekends! haha jk
welp have a great! week! enjoy yourselves!
-elder johnson

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Way Behind in Posting!

I have been behind since my computer hasn't been working very well. I hope to get some current pictures and information about his new area soon. Enjoy the emails!

April 5th WOO!! Oh man.... life sounds so awesome, hectic, fun, crazy. Kevin is going to university! i'm glad he got my b-day card! i sent it a week before leaving selcourt! it got there quick! wow thanks for calling president! i'll be having an interview with him this week! so i'll ask him about it and apologise for you! haha Things are great! we're still keeping super busy i'm over the stomach adjustment phase of township.... let me put it this way i was eating a lot and still lost weight my first few days here. stuff goes right through you! So that was awesome! And i am now speaking more tsotsi talk than english with people on the street! ACHTARE! LAMANJYE! EITA HOLA! SHO SHO MFYWETU! it's pretty awesome! The guys around the township love us! which is crazy cause usually they hate the mulungus riding around township! But we're teaching some pretty sweet people! some of our investigators are being interviewed for baptisms this week! so that will be great it sounds like they'll be baptized a week from sunday! :) The people in the pics i'm pretty sure it was norbert and tariro! was it the wife and the husband?!?! Or was it the family home evening?! the FHE was with Norbert tariro and obert and sabina! it was fun! Those families are gonna be so powerful! I'm excited to continue to hear about what they will be doing over the following year! o and conference has been pushed back a few weeks for africa! so i won't be seeing it until the 24th or something like that! bummer eh? anyways! have a great week! i'm just about outta email time! the church is true! -elder johnson

April 12th Yup... Tsotsi isn't a real language.... it's pretty much just a bunch of slang that all the "gangsta's" and taxi drivers speak! Achtare is afrikaans for "behind you" Lamanjye means "right now" in zulu, eita hola means absolutely nothing and sho sho imfweytu is i'm good brother! Pretty much you use these words in no particular order and communicate nothing intelligible and the guys LOVE IT! In bigger news we are in the ward choir and i'm in a quartet that will do a musical number in sacrament this week! as well we are learning african traditional songs! it's pleasing! We are most likely going to be having 5 baptisms this week! We're very excited!! 2 of which are future priesthood holders! YES! It is a ward! Its entirely run by members in the township.... which is nice and sometimes not too nice! But we love it anyways even when it's not as organized as usual.... for instance the ward is run on Africa Time. So sacrament starts at 9:10 every sunday! and most of the ward shows up around 9:30. And the bishop is only at church every other week. sometimes less! so it's pretty great. The good news is that we're actually rejuvenating the ward a bit..... wow... i just used a 5 syllable word. The best township food is KOTA!!!! It's the diet of the missionary... let me put it this way it's about 8 rands which is about a dollar. and it's a quarter loaf of bread emptied out and stuffed with fries, cheese, meats, and sauce. It will probably give me a heart attack someday.... but yo! it's good and filling you can eat one and be full for the whole day! I'm going to send you guys some pictures of me and my son (elder matunya)and me with a family here in hospital view that we're teaching (tanki and samuel!) Tanki is a member but samuel isn't. he likes to drink too much but we're gonna change that. Don't worry mom. i did cut my hair when we got back to the flat that night and my hair is now incredibly short and missionary like. Pretty much a #4 all around my dome! OH and we're going to the temple this friday! i'm so stoked! I love the temple. i listen to a lot of talks about the temple. i'm pretty sure it's my favorite place in the whole world and my favorite thing to think and ponder upon! it's so sweet! THE CHURCH IS TRUE! _elder johnson

April 19th WOO! 5 BAPTISMS! It happened for sure! It tied the record for my mission thus far! :) We have some very solid people in that group as well! Siphiwe is already talking about going on mission and all that. So that would probably make me happier than anything else! As well Lucky is the man and our others bore awesome testimonies following their baptisms! Sister hilda didn't go down without a fight elder van vuuren had to baptise her like 8 times before she finally got under! haha But it was definately a spiritual experience. it's always the best. As well we had the rubbish collectors all over Gauteng go on strike this week! There is trash and junk all over the streets everywhere! today we drove down the street and there was a dumpster in the middle of the street! sweet. as well i ate chicken head and chicken feet yesterday at siphiwe's after the baptism! The juice inside of a chickens eye is not pleasant in case you ever have the urge to try it. haha The temple was sweet! as usual! it continues to blow my mind! Jo burg has the best temple grounds in the world! What else is there to tell about...... oh ya we're on bikes 5 out of 7 days. we get the car for two days of the week! And bishop came to church again! sweet, The vibe in the ward has been awesome the last two weeks. lots of smiling, jokes, and just a sweet vibe. Aside from that... not much else. Just working hard. And doing the work that the lord wants us to do! it's great! But i hope everyone has a good week! i'll hope to hear from y'all soon! the church is true! -elder johnson

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Spoonin' and...transfers are coming!

March 15,2010
The baptism was a smashing success! as well we had double digit investigators at sacrament for the first time ever in selcourt! it was great! :)
And guess what?? we're gonna try to have another one this week.
so that will be sweet!
Unfortunately obert had an emergency and wasn't able to baptize them, But he'll be ready soon!
Obert was baptized like 3 months ago. he should've had the aaronic priesthood a long long time ago but..... ya. the ward takes time to get on top of things.
I've attached some pics of the baptism and the FHE we did the night before with norbert,tariro, obert and sabina!
It was so fun! we played some intense games of spoons! I apparently was the best spooner but jeff dad and kevin already know that. haha just spoonin ya.
Ya elder maisonueve is from around there. He was the AP for awhile in our mission, He was a cool dude.
Well i'll try to work the poor man's copywrite. I'm not too concerned most of the songs i was worried about being taken already have been. But it's ok there's more where that came from...
ya member missionary work is the best. You guys should have them over for a braai or dinner or something nice. That way the family can "meet the bishop" as well have some friends in the ward.
Member missionary work is more than just saying hello at sacrament meeting! I'm glad to hear you went skiing with steph that's awesome! Just start with baby steps and work your way up. That's the way it's done!
We get transfer news on saturday so my next email will contain my destiny for the next 4 1/2 to 6 months! I'm hoping to go to Lebotse( a village in botswana) and be the branch president and just stay up there the rest of my mission....but thats a pretty high aspiration! haha
I'm still having a bunch of fun here in selcourt though. It is gonna be tough to leave, it is the land of my inheritance.
But aside from that there isn't too much going on! We're just working hard!
Have a great week!
the church is true!
-elder johnson

Mon, Mar 8, 2010
Well, i come before you this day repentant! My last email was a bit dreary and down. But this week all is well! don't worry obert is getting the priesthood this week just in time so that he can baptise norbert and tariro! it's gonna be sweet. we are pumped!
Ya as far as the oscars go.... All i know is that Avatar is like the biggest thing since sliced bread or something.... i've seen stuff for it everywhere.
We put our white investigator (dirk) on date yesterday!! He's engaged to a member in the ward and he is going to baptized in may! Unfortunately i won't be here when it happens.... but it's all good!
As well Sis. Zwane is on date. I don't know if we told you about here but she is the mother of a convert in the township and we got her as a refferal and she is awesome. We teach powerful lessons every time! it's awesome!!
Oh man, i can't believe that biking is a hobby to some people.... ugh. i'm tired of it!!! haha
What else is good news?!?! One of our new investigators Jeffrey... is a stud He's just rocking the lessons. I'm thinking of even having him baptized in a few weeks. maybe before i leave. it's a bit selfish but i would baptize him before just about anyone but Norbert and Tariro! He's power.
So tomorrow night when we teach obert our lesson is gonna be "how to baptize" i'm pumped!
I also had the chance to play for a missionary fireside we had with Marlin K. Jensen. I played "come thou fount" it was awesome! i was going to send a video of me practicing it but it wont fit.... sorry. Well when i send a dvd of pictures home i'll include it!
Ya i just finished the book of mormon... so i started D&C.... i'm kinda pumped already it's been blowing my mind.... the first section is nuts.... lots of sweet stuff in there. It's nice when scripture study becomes exciting!
But the lord has definately been answering my prayers this week as i fasted this sunday i asked to be able to enjoy the work and to love the people... even if their stressing me out a bit, and oh boy did i get answered! it was awesome!
-elder johnson