I am currently serving as a full-time missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Johannesburg, South Africa Mission! I plan to serve for two years before returning home to finish my education.

I am serving a mission because I know that God is our loving Father in Heaven. I have a testimony that he knows each of us personally and wants us to succeed. The gospel Jesus Christ leads to lasting happiness. The fullness of his Gospel exists on the Earth today and I want to help spread the joyous news!

If you are reading this and don't know for yourself I plead with you to learn more. You can gain a personal witness that the Gospel has been restored! Visiting http://mormon.org is a great way to start!

I miss you all and would love to hear from you! See you in two years!

Letter 4/19/10


This week was a little slow. I've been doing really well.

Unfortunately Elder Pidun hasn't, he's been sick the last few days.

We've tried to keep working, but it's been difficult for him, especially since we're on bikes. Yet, even with his sickness, quite a few things happened this week.

The other day I went on Exchanges with Elder Van Der Swan, he's from Holland. He came out just six weeks before I did. I really enjoyed teaching with him. He's been a member of the church for 18 months and is the only member in his family. He knows the scriptures inside and out, it's probably because he spends every free minute reading them.

Right now I'm studying "Recognize the Spirit" in Preach My Gospel.

It's a fantastic manual. Every sentence seems so perfectly constructed.

I learn so much as I read.

You'll do wonders if you really study preach my gospel before your mission. It can greatly benefit even those who aren't planning to be missionaries in the near future.

I've been thinking a lot about inactive members. We have quite a few in this branch. The home and visiting teaching programs were just organized and we are praying that many less active members will return to church. I've never seen a Brach where the members have so many problems. In addition to personal problems, most of the members seem to have problems with each other. It was Joseph Smith that said, widespread criticism of our leaders is the only thing that could bring this church into apostasy.

Anyway, recently I was reading about spiritual gifts. I read the several accounts of the in the scriptures and was surprised to see how well those chapters relate to the problems of our branch. As I was reading Paul's account he talks about how everyone is given different gifts so that we can uplift and support each other. He describes the members as a body. He explains that the eye can’t tell the ear that it is of no need, similarly the head can't tell the foot to depart. When even one member of the body is lost we become crippled. At church we need everyone's unique talents gifts and abilities. We are really working to unify the branch. We are trying to hold monthly activities where members can serve together, invite their friends, and involve the less active members to return.

Next Sunday we are planning to have two baptisms. A mother and her 13 year old son. It's almost not even fair how much they have to go through. Many people in Klerksdorp are struggling with money.

Klerksdorp used to be a huge mining community, as the mines have shut down the town has suffered. Tsidi has a private business training nurses, the hospitals she works for are struggling and haven't been able to pay. On Sunday night she ran out of petrol coming to a member's home for one of the lessons before her baptism. Of course it was raining. Ourselves and Brother Jubber bought some petrol and went to bring it to her. She's been having some problems with her husband as well -they’ve been separated for a while.

Johan and his son (two recent converts) are moving. Johan found a job in Johannesburg. It was bitter sweet, he won't have to struggle for money anymore, but he's a big loss for our branch.

Currently we have about 40 at church. We're aiming to have 75 active members by the end of the year. If we're able to make 70 they'll begin building us a Chapel.

By the way, do you know how Ben Smith is doing? I heard there was an earthquake in Chile last month. Apparently in one of the Santiago missions the Mission President's wife had a vision about it and was able to help prepare everyone for it.

Well I'm about out of time again. I love being a missionary. In just these last few weeks I feel like I have grown so much. Thanks for your prayers!


Elder Keith Halterman

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