Tag Archives: Durban South Africa Mission

2015 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,400 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 23 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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Every Member a Missionary

Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2015 11:01:03 +0200
Subject: Re: Nov. 29, 2015
From: kendall.payne
To: cardstonmomma

Hey family

Haha so this morning i was a little bit depressed, because the thought came to mind “Hey Elder Payne! you go home next week baba! this means today is your last email!” I was sad because that means i no longer will be sending inspirational emails home every week, I will no longer be having moments to teach the gospel Every day and i wont be surrounded by Great wonderful missionaries every day. But i took comfort in the words of David o. Mckay. “Remember… Every Member a missionary!” I realized as well just because i cant teach the gospel to investigators every day, doesnt mean i have to stop teaching the gospel to all who i see including family members and church members. And just because i wont be around full time missionaries every day, doesnt mean i wont be around the part time missionaries our church had to offer. Those thoughts made me glad. And i well i can continue sharing the gospel each week through the internet just like i have been doing for the past two years. While some opportunities come to an end, many more wonderful opportunities will come. I look forward to those, as well as the multitude of blessings that are in store for those who seek to fulfill gods words.

This past week i have become more aware of many of the blessings which god has given me. They are to many to mention but i am grateful for all of them. I will mention just a few however that always stick out to me.

I am grateful for a Loving Father in heaven who has broken me down, but as well has built me up to be something more than i could have become myself.

I am grateful for serving a mission and the skills i have learned, such as patience, diligence and many others.

I am grateful for church leaders who are inspired by God and for scriptures written by prophets ancient and modern. These have become a pillar of strength to me in so many ways.

While there are many other things i could say, i feel like saying anymore would be a little bit boastful. But i know that God can bless your lives as richly as he has blessed mine.

As well i have pondered upon whether or not i should wear my suit on the plane ride home or not. I have come to the conclusion that i will wear my traditional zulu wear that i have acquired and can be seen in the picture below. So i look forward to seeing all of you who are family at the airport in calgary, all who are friends at some other point during the course of my life. But i hope to be able to see everyone of you in the celestial Kingdom of our heavenly father.

Till We meet!!

Elder Payne

Final Testimony

Date: Mon, 30 Nov 2015 10:42:07 +0200
Subject: Re: Nov. 29, 2015
From: kendall.payne
To: cardstonmomma

Hey family!

So as you know my mission is coming to a close. On monday right after emailing we drove four hours to Durban so that we would be able to attend our zone conference the next day. So tuesday we enjoyed getting taught from president and understanding how we can be better missionaries. I was happy that i was able to learn and apply some things that president was sharing with us. The week prior to the conference our zone got asked to perform a musical number, so we chose to sing “I Love the Lord” to the tune of “Be Still My Soul”. It was great. We didnt quite sound like the mormon tabernacle Choir, but it really was a close second haha. Also all the missionaries who were going home were asked to bear their final testimonies with those present. It was a wonderful experience. For those who havent had opportunity to hear the final remarks of a missionary you honestly are missing out, because it was so spiritually powerful. It seemed like the spirit kept getting stronger with each young man who stood and testified as well. Finally it came to be my turn. I sort of wanted to make the excuse that i was crying so i had to go wipe my eyes and blow my nose, but it would have been very lame of me and probably would have affected the spirit of the meeting.

I bore my testimony on how church leaders are inspired and how in the Kingdom of God there are no wrong calls. I know because i received two mission calls haha. I told the missionaries how our church leaders are inspired in their callings. I mentioned how the Lord Humbled me on my mission, the gratitude i had for each companion and how we need to depend on the Lord in all that we do. I felt a little bit overcome at some points (meaning i cried again) but i regained control and finished with my love of the gospel, The love i feel for Joseph Smith, Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father.

After finishing what i felt i needed to say i stepped down from the stand, having the feeling that i was able to bear my testimony as powerfully as i could. Prior to the meeting i had said many prayers that God wold bless me so i would know what to say. Immediately after ward i prayed again but offering thanks to the Lord for helping me fulfill another purpose in his kingdom.

My companion and i had a very good week as well. We were invited to celebrate American thanksgiving with our seniour couple and chowed turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy and buns like nobodies business. I was so full the next morning i skipped breakfast to avoid feeling sick. It really was a glorious feast and although i may not be an american, i will certainly celebrate any holiday from any country, because most national holidays involve some sort of feasting period and i enjoy that.

Then this morning we woke up at three so i could drive one of my dear missionary friends to a bus station two hours away so he could receive some training provided from the mission for the benefit of elders going home so they have a foot in the door so to speak. As we were teaching throughout the week i heard something that impressed me. It was said by a young man who turned from the streets to become a successful artist and he said “A journey never ends, its only the heel that finishes.” I liked that thought and how it pertained to mortality and what all of us do. I would like to say his statement with a little twist though. “Our missions never end, the work of the Lord never ends. The only thing that does end is the time frame in which we have to work in.” So even though my two year time frame has now been shrunk to two weeks i will forever remain a missionary at heart, because i want to continue to see lives change the way that mine has.

I know this church is true. I know God lives. I bear testimony to that fact and so do thousands and millions of others upon the face of this earth. If you havent started on your journey of discipleship, put the armour of God about you and embark. He will protect you. He loves you and so do I.

Elder Payne

Give me a Brick

On Tue, Apr 14, 2015 at 1:00 PM, Kendall Payne wrote:
Hey family!!

From the picture you sent me with shaelyns car it looks like you took out the garden fence. And yes i do know Elder Webb and he has mentioned to me as well that he has relatives back home who are Payne’s so we get excited when we have the chance to speak one with another. Plus… who is alexandra again? haha im really not sure.

So this past week was transfers, but i will be staying and finishing the training with Elder Agabu so i will be in Thaba ‘Nchu for 7 and 1/2 months and in the Bloemfontein zone for thirteen months. Im actually really glad i get to be here for such a long time though, because it means the people who we started teaching last year are either baptized or not. This weekend we have a baptism coming up of probably one of the most powerful investigators i have ever taught. Then in another few weeks we have more baptisms lined up, so there is a lot of progress happening in the ward.

It was funny as well when i found out i was staying, because that means i will be having my birthday here haha. I told some of the members in the ward “i dont want any thing special this year. I would appreciate every member giving me a brick. I have been in this area for so long that i may as well start building a house so i have some place to come back to after im done with mission.” They all get a laugh at that but at the same time im a little serious. This place has become my second home haha.

Bricks for Elder Payne's dream house
Bricks for Elder Payne’s dream house!

Well… im not sure what else to say. The week was great and i loved it. I hope all of you are safe in your many adventures this coming week!

Love
Elder Payne

Exchanges with the Zone

From: Kendall Payne
Date: 2015-04-06 6:20 AM
To: Luana Payne;
Subject:Re:

Dear family

Thank you for honoring my wish about conference. I really am looking forward to it a lot.

(In response to a light-hearted question by a family member) I have not as yet killed a lion or a python, but i have not yet had the opportunity to.

This past week was very great and i loved it alot. We were able to go on exchanges within our district and zone and they were both wonderful. For the exchanges with our zone leaders, i was with elder brimhall, who is a very tall elder from missisipi. We had a great day finding new people to teach and teaching new people. We actually met a man who had been living in St.George Utah for the past 30 years and wanted to come back into contact with the church as badly as possible. As we talked he told us about all the experiences that he has had with the church and some of them include being able to meet with and talk to President Hinckley on two separate occasions which sounded awesome.

Our exchange within our district were great. I was with elder smith who is from johannesburg here in SA. We met some very prepared people and i was able to go back into my old area in Botsabelo which is always a nice experience as well. Its a little weird because when i see people from the branch their they say”Elder Payne??!! You haven’t left Thaba ‘Nchu yet?! You are going to finish your mission there! just know you are going no where else!!” its kind of funny haha but i dont think ill be in Thaba ‘Nchu for much longer.

As well this past weekend was a weird experience for me because of Easter weekend. Like it was the first time in my life where i have seen churches been open from thursday morning, until sunday evening. Haha now i can see why some people only come to church once per year. If i did close to 72 hours of being in a church service, with no breaks in between, then i wouldnt want to attend very often either. I like how our church does it with conference. Its very pleasant to me now.

I think that is about it for this week, but i hope you guys continue to be amazing. I love you all!!

Elder Payne

New Companion from Zimbabwe

Date: Mon, 16 Mar 2015 12:05:41 +0200
Subject: Re:
From: kendall.payne
To: cardstonmomma

Hey family!!

My new companion is from Zimbabwe and he is a very hard worker which is fantastic. And i never did motag. what is it?

(personal notes to family) …

But this past week was great. My companion and i found 42 potential investigators this past week, so this week we will be teaching alot more people than i think we ever have my whole mission. We will be extremely busy haha which is good. I would rather be to busy, than not busy enough. At times it doesnt even feel like we have time enough to eat, but i know its important, so we continue to try and find time to chow something.

In a few weeks we have some baptisms coming up and the people who are getting baptised are very powerful investigators. Our bishop told us that he would be okay baptizing them like tomorrow, But i still feel like we need to be a little more patient and watch the roots of their knowledge in the gospel grow alot deeper.

… (more personal notes to family)

I hope your next week continues to be amazing!!

Elder Payne

Zone Conference… surprise!

Date: Mon, 23 Mar 2015 12:39:26 +0200
Subject: Re:
From: kendall.payne
To: cardstonmomma

hey family!!

This past week was a little crazy. We came to Bloem on monday so that we could email and to our surprise we find the assistants in the email shop. When we asked them why they were in bloem they said “well zone conference is tomorrow… Didnt you get the message?” apparently we didnt because to that moment we didnt know when it was haha it was a pretty great surprise.

The Zone conference was again amazing. Our President told us that the church has this big easter initiative that they are doing to help us find more people to teach. So on April 5 the church has paid youtube for all the advertising that will be happening that day. So on april 5 tell people about the youtube takeover that will be happening and to watch the video #becausehelives. Its absolute power and i hope that we are able to find alot more people through this way.

The rest of the week was awesome. And yes mom as of now i have opened all the letters and have found all the money. The only problem i have is continuing to open a letter every day. I generally just forget haha but i will do better. I really like all the little quotes and every thing that you sent. Thanks so much for the letters. They are awesome.

Well just know i love you and that i hope for the very best for the four of you at home. Im sending a picture of my greenie as well.

Have a good week all!!

Elder Seth Payne