Sunday, February 26, 2012

Jacks  First written Letter Home with a memory card of pictures! Soon to be posted.
February 18th, 2012

Dear Mom, Dad and Family,

I'm in Africa! What an adventure. We first landed in South Africa around 10:00 am and the flight was a lot better than the one to London, England, mainly because I slept the entire flight. When we started up the ramp of the terminal I instantly felt how hot and humid it is down here, luckily I had airport air conditioning to cool off.

I was a lucky one. As we collected are bags two elders were missing their luggage and a lot of it was still in England. We pressed on and met Brother Mocke who is the MTC Manager and trainer. We also met up with first native companions, mine was one of them.

We drove to the MTC and it was even hard just to watch us drive on the left side of the road and having the driver on the “wrong side”. It's not bad being the minority here, everyone is really nice and pleasant. As we pulled up to the MTC it was like we approached a castle, because of the high walls and video cameras , also guards walking about

It all happened so fast that first day and it was hard to stay awake from the jet lag. The trick with that was just trying to stay awake fro the full day, so I could get normal habit of the days. I also had interviews, check-ups, and was able to e-mail you. More into the day a cool thing was assigned to my companion and I, we were called to be district leaders over two elder companionship’s and three sister companions. What an awesome responsibility to have and make people feel happy and welcome.

I must confess that the next day was really hard for me. I felt sick from the food I had on the plane. I was so nervous, I just didn't know if I was ready to be a missionary. The words of the Stake President Johnson rang in my head. “ If you are not worthy, the words would choke in your mouth.” It got so bad that when we were practicing I froze up and I thought, I choked. I thought that I needed to leave to come back home, but It was the feeling I need to kneel down and pray. So my companion and I left the classroom to pray together. I gave a powerful prayer from my heart that humbled me enough and cleared my fears. I told the lord I knew I was nothing and I was giving him all my feelings of fear and nerves.

That prayer helped me so much to place my heart where it needed to be. I now feel more at peace and calm, but I still feel the intensity of this great work on my shoulders. I know without God there is no way I can make it.

Now more on a happier note we've been getting more along here and I'm sure by the end of it all we will be like a great family. Today, we even went out around the town to shop down the roads. I had to use my card at the ATM to get rand, I need to use it, because there is no where I can exchange it until I leave the MTC. I didn't spend any money so I still have a lot of the $250. I was wondering if you might e-mail me how it affected my account until I can switch it. Sorry:(.

You know I had to stop writing, so I could finish up my day. Now, that I’m a missionary I feel like I have no time to finish all I want to do. There is so much good to get finished that it's a struggle to keep up.

Today, I was able to teach for the first time with my companion. We taught an “investigator” the first lesson. In the time we were given before to prepare I found that my companions strengths and weaknesses, with mine as well. His strength was his testimony and inviting the spirit, but he lacks the ability to talk to and give a lesson in away that flows. My strength lies in the complete opposite. Not saying I can't invite the spirit, just not with such faith as him.

Our lesson went perfect with minor errors that I know as we pray together we will be able to overcome. It's funny how this companionship helps you understand how a marriage might need to function. One praying for the other, always together, and in total communication with everything.

Please thank Sister Jones for the book of Mormon's and testimonies. Please ask Anika if she would send me a picture of her so I can show others that this is the kind of young women that supports me and also tell her I need it because I do miss her:).

Mom and Dad thank you for preparing me for this task. I know just like Ne phi, “I was born of goodly parents”. Your love and Memory is what gives me the foundation to continue everyday. You and Heavenly Father are like the platform that holds the bridge of my drive out here.

Jacob and Jillian, you two are beautiful and I love you with all my heart. Be smart and kind to all. I need you to send me pictures of home and letters from you. Even though I'm half way around the world away, I can still be your big brother. Write to me about everything like questions/cons urns. I love you.

Keeping a record and keeping in contact is hard to do, but I know from Ether 12:12 that if I show faith, I might have the miracle of remembering it all.

I'm doing well for I'm in the service of my God. I know that if we have faith in Christ, repent, are Baptized, receive the holy Ghost and endure to the end: we will be blessed beyond measure. I know god lives and his son Jesus Christ. I know the book of Mormon is true and by that knowledge I know that this church and leaders are true. Amen.

P.S. Have people write to me and let them know I will do my best to respond. Also let me know how home is going and what events take place. Even the funny moments include them.

Always forward South Africa

Elder Jack Forrest Dalton :)

Helaman's District Rules!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

February 25th,2012

Hello from the other side of the world!

I'm so happy to hear that all is well back in Utah. I feel the love from all the pictures and letters. Mom thank you for the blog it looks amazing and I know people will laugh at what I have to say.

This week has been amazing in the MTC. I have been to the Johannesburg temple, which is really small, taught my first two real Investigators, and have had my testimony assured time and time again that the church is true.

Dad like said THE GOSPEL IS AMAZING! My companion took out his endowments when we went to the temple which was a cool thing to see; he also got his patriarchal blessing that morning. I'm so blessed to have those so close to my house.

My companion and I have hit a few bumps on our road to unity. We have had a few fights and worked them out, we came to the conclusion that we are from two different cultures and we have many different ideas on how we should work. I pray for patience and charity everyday so I don't kill him :) Just kidding!

Every Friday the MTC holds a open house for investigators and we teach. My first one was a kid named Preston from the states go figure! The lesson went awesome and you could cut out the spirit with a knife it was so thick. I know know the joy there is in bringing souls unto the father, I rubbed my eyes a lot after:) We even got his number and gave him a book of Mormon that he was excited to read. My second went okay, but there needs to be opposition in all things, ha ha ha! I love my mission and all that I serve with.

Now, I only have five minutes. So I’ll answer some questions. My P day is Saturday, I've sent my first letter to you so it should be there soon; they say it takes ten days to get back home. I'm District leader over the Helaman District which is the only district that has sister missionaries. They love us so much, there making cookies for us now. I will give more detail in my letters. I need to use my card to get ran, sorry. Love you.

Always forward South Africa

Elder Jack Dalton

Jack with his first companion during flight Elder Palmer/ The missionary’s gathered in England airport.

ElderNyanidoro and Elder Dalton are District leaders of Helaman's District compiled of three male & three female companionship's in the Johannesburg MTC.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Monday February 13,2013 Jack before he was set apart as a full-time Missionary. Hung his Mission flag he has worked out under for the past 7 months at Sister Austins home. It will now represent Jack while he is gone.
Valentines Day February 14th,2012  off to the airport we go!!! But first Breakfast!
Gormandise Bakery (SLC 300 North, 300 south). A family favorite.

Jacks MTC

Johannesburg MTC

Second letter between Mom and Jack

February 18th 2012 Day Five

I’m going to ask lots of questions so you can cut and pastes this email and write a quick response. Well Mom I love you very much and will try to answer the best I can.

  1. Did I pack to much? I feel like I have a lot, but it will help when I get out.
  2. Did you have to pay overage on any baggage? NO
  3. Is the city as large as salt lake or bigger? It's a lot bigger and is really green and hot. Also it's very humid. It's not very different, except every house is surrounded by a five foot wall and electric fence.
  4. What was the largest "wow"factor that made you realize you were in a different country? The way the people speak and act down here. They are very proper and for me as a cowboy it's different.
  5. Have you met you mission President? Yes, he is Pres. Reber.
  6. How Long has Elder Nyanidoro been a member? Since 2006.
  7. Can you tell me About him, family? His father was called to be a bishop the same time as dad was and we both have two siblings.
  8. Are you getting comfortable? Yes, my body felt really sick for a while and I was so nervous. The lord definitely humbles his servants. Pride is something I feel I need to break down. At least I didn't get food poisoning like Elder Parks from the plane food, just sick. Thanks for the Meds.
  9. Did you find all the pictures? I placed them in your books/ journals. Most of them.
  10. What are your sleeping arrangement is it like a dorm at EFY? Yes.
  11. Can you e-mail any pictures? I can, but I don't have the time to figure it out, I will send my first memory card with my letter today.
  12. Will you be able to Skype? Nope.
  13. How was the first day? Like a wave crashing into the beach, a little of me was lost, but I still stand.
  14. Do you see Elder Parks? Often, the MTC is small like a house. He is very nice.
  15. How is the food? It is really simple, but good. There isn't a lot of sugar, sodium, or flavor in them. Just very basic and more healthy.
  16. How is your acne? Good .
  17. Is your cold sore resolved? Yes.
Everyone is asking about you at work, at home, all checking on us to make sure all are surviving. We are and I'm glad to here you are having the time of your life! I hope you jumped off the high dive and are fully saturated in the decision you made 5 years ago. How sweet the reward. I loved your letter and had a huge confirmation of there truthfulness of those words. You truly know the desires of my heart. I'm very pleased for you and am not worried. You are on the lords errand with god to protect you. Your flag is so cool and many have commented how neat it is.

Today, at lunch I bought two new chairs and two mirrors for 45$ next door to Eisenstein bagels for lunch. The chairs look perfect next to the piano. I will have to send you a picture.

I loveove you a great deal! The Heaton kids come over tomorrow and I am going to Parker's wedding to take pictures for them.

Elder Parks mother and I are keeping in touch he called her in London she was pleased he said the 2nd flight was better that the first also. Make sure you are drinking! I love you!

Mom I'm sorry my emails are quick but I fight troubles on the computer with the time clock racing. I love you all very much. Please thank Jacob, and Jill for their pictures.
Please write to me. I'm doing very well at learning how I teach after my companion and I went off alone to pray for me. I was having a hard time with my nerves and not wanting to fail .I kind of psyched myself out. Now I’m settled down I feel better and more clear. Please have everyone e-mail even if I can't respond, just to hear them in the message helps me to move forward. I love to hang with the Africans and feel more like them than the others. They are simple and very accepting. The lord has blessed me so much with my companion here. He makes me feel like I'm home in Africa. Tell everyone at work I love them and to keep going, Remind Samara to go to school. I love you and Dad, Jacob, and Jill. My time is almost out. Tell Parker good luck and I love him.

Always forward South Africa, Elder Jack Dalton :)

First letter from Jack

Letters from Jack
 I need to catch up on a few thing to post but these are something I can't wait on.

February 16th 2012 Day Three

Dear Dad and Family,

I have officially made it to South Africa! It's so hot and humid, kinda like Navuoo when we went. The flight was easy, because I was so tired i just slept the whole way.

We where picked up like we where promised and the ride over was awesome. Sorry this one will be a short email, I feel I’m in a hurry. The MTC is small like a house and there are about 21 or so in here. This reminds me of EFY and how it runs.

My first companion is a Native of Africa. He is Elder Nyanidoro from "Zim" which is Zimbabwe. I'm already in culture shock down here. Even the way they speak in different, so much for an English speaking :). Luckily the gospel is the same where ever I go.

I love the lord and his gospel. I'm just trying to get over my many feelings and trying to settle them all down. I'm writing in my journal often and doing my best to document all my doings, " To be a record keeping people". I know there is a lot to do but in the words of the president's councilor " You eat an Elephant one bite and a time".

Mom, thanks for all the packing and letters it's a lot, but thank you. I love you all very much and know I'm where I need to be.

Always Forward South Africa
Elder Dalton :)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

A few days before Jack's departure.

A family tradition to visit Temples and take a family picture to make a memory. On Saturday February 4th, 2011 was no different except, we headed to our last temple visit in Idaho Falls. This would be the 14th Temple we have visited in only two years! We were able to have an opportunity to go see some family friends the Rose's. We brought Katelyn Rose with us on our timple trip. We had a great time. We ate lunch in the cafeteria. Then Jack assisted several youth perform baptism's for the dead. Kirk and I enjoyed watching our children and enjoying the peace of the Temple.

We then went to Tegan & Michael's eagle court of honor. We had a great time and enjoyed the best chocolate milk ever. I mean Ever!!! We stopped at the dairy that's like one block from their house and loaded up. Seriously made with who would guess? Potato flakes. Only 200 cal. per 1 cup. Yep the best! The Jen & Dave Diaz and the kids, the Roses and the Dalton's all got  together for a night of pizza, wow good ice cream (Yep from the dairy!) and Words with Friends + a good movie! Just fun hanging out.

O a few things to remember next trip. Jacob bring undershirts, Jack take church shoes, Jill make sure your tights fit.