Monday, October 22, 2012

October 22, 2012

*for those who do not know, one of Riley's cousins, David van Bruggen, passed away this week in a work accident. It is with a great love that we remember him.


this week and the months following will truely be ones of solemnity as we expirience this heartbreaking death of our beloved brother, son, father, companion and friend David Van Bruggen. and i pray that we may all take the time to ponder his greatness and humility and the example of kindness he was to all of us. But we as latter day saints have the privillage of knowing that this life has no power over us. that trails and tribulations fall apon all men that they might be built into a giant. ready for the eternal progression that awaits us in the kingdom celestial. and that some day God will call every one of us back to his presence. i know with all the bounds of my heart that that is true and that death has no power among men. i pray with all my heart for Tanya and her 4 beautiful children that they might remember god and his love for us in this time of sorrow. and that they are never alone in there sufferings. i remember david as he was. a humble hardworking father who loved his kids and wife with all his heart. and who always worked for them. those are things i have observed from the privillage i had to know him in this life. and i know that he continues that even now as he prepares a place for his family in heaven. along with many other great men who are counted in our family line. though i am far from you in person my heart is with Tanya and her children in this time. i pray that the spirit will comfort all in this time.

i am so glad for the grace of God that prevails among us at this time. we have always been a very blessed family on both sides and god will continue as we continue in faith and charity. i am sure that Madysens birthday was very nice to be able to attend. its hard for me to believe she is already a year old! haha it truely seems like just months ago i was telling the other missionaries that i was an uncle again. but really i was still in ambohimanarina back then. still so new to things. and now as time gos here in madagascar i guess it seems to freeze for me back at home. but really its moving along there as well.

haha whenever emily gets together with any of her siblings she seems to be able to find herself in a happy joking silly mood. wich is something i greatly miss. and i am sure that her and robyn were having alot of fun in subway together. and i am glad that there wasnt another bathroom incident...... hahahahahah i am sure you dont remember because you dont want to remember but for me, i hold them in great fondness.

it is so good to hear a little about dallin and his life in lethbridge. how well he is doing and still preparing to go on a mission. it has been so long since he has writen me. wich is fine. i am sure he is busy. and about school. it has been an issue somewhat playing on my mind a little. because i want to get right into education after my mission and not take any breaks but i also want to be around home soo much. but the school i thought i wanted to attend is byu wich is so far away. but after little contemplation and pondering and prayer i have decided that i would not mind going to school somewhere around home. maybe grant mac or u of a or something where i can still further my education and be around my family. still apply to get me into byu but if it does not work out dont push it. i know god will provide for me no matter where i am as long as i am dilligent and faithfull. and i would love to go to school in alberta. my priorities have come to me in a very clear way on my mission. and my family is second on the list.

i will continue to pray for granpi. it comforts me to know that its a pretty regular proceedure. i guess nani servived it and she is only a little bit tougher than grampi so i think he will do alright ;)

i am doing very well personaly. your letter certainly did find me in health and good spirits. me and my companion got a week where we worked with eachother the whole week and nobody was ill wich proved to be a great blessing. three weeks ago we tracted into a man named luciano. he is a young man who works for a beer company as an advertiser. our first time with him proved to be very unique and especially full of the spirit. me and my companion came out of it filled with joy and wonderment. undoubtable the spirit had consumed us. then last week we went to him again and discussed with him the book of mormon in great detail. the holy ghost especially consumed our conversation. he then bore testimony of that holy ghost and how it is so important in his life. how he was told by the holy ghost that his job was not good and not something he wanted to do for a long time. again after leaving the time my companion and i were full of the spirit of god. thanking him for such a great opportunity to teach a man clearly prepared for our message. knowing that if it were our word it would have no power over him we praise our lord almighty that he has trusted us with such responisbility. and that was the highlight of our week. though our week was truely full of highlights i will leave you with that one for now. thank you for all your love for me and support. i will continue to thrust in my sickle doing the work of god even as my fathers and forfathers have done and are still doing in this life or the one to come.

be fitiavana mandrakizay
elder bates

1. PACKAGES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


3.these are the two people who got baptised. i baptised the girl, elder ludwig baptised the boy.

4. the awesome braccelett my sister sent me!!!! thanks ems!!

5.a horned beatle. about 2 inches long. and very clingy.... haha

6. my studdly haircut

7.byu in madagascar. he was a totally random dude on the street. not a member haha

8.our delicious water filter. mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

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