Bonjour tout le monde!!
So this week was long (like all the first weeks after a transfer), but it was a great week! We have a lot of work to do here in Avera so I’m excited to work with Soeur Falesii. My companion is so great and we laugh a whole lot in our little house with "Mamie Bobo" (That’s our Mamie that lives with us). Mamie literally makes me laugh so hard and I am convinced that I found Jordan's (my best friend) 70 year old Tahitian twin. She's always hungry, she always has something funny to say, she does random things, and she is very easy going. She is one reason that this transfer was a lot easier than if she wasn’t there :)
We don’t have a lot of new investigators so we did a lot of contacting and we're planning different activities so that we can find new investigators. Overall, the ward is in good shape but I’m excited for what we are going to do in the ward for the future.
Life here in Raiatea is a lot more chill and easy going than Tahiti and I love that there are not a whole lot of cars on the road and that EVERYBODY is family. The sun is a little stronger here and it is a whole lot more humid here than in Tahiti. There is always wind though so that’s nice and we sleep outside on our porch pretty much every night! Sometimes I feel like I’m at girls camp. It will definitely be weird to go back to life with AC because it is very rare to see AC here, ha ha.
This past week, I met a whole lot of investigators and I really enjoyed learning everyone’s stories and how much the gospel has changed their lives. One story I loved was with one mother who shared that the gospel has changed her life more than she could’ve imagined. She said that before, if she had fights with her sisters, they could last years before they forgave each other. Now that she has known the gospel, she said that one bad argument that they had resolved itself within a few days and that was really touching for her because she saw that when she prayed and read her scriptures, she found answers. This story really struck me because for something as small as an argument between siblings had such a big impact on her and because she did even the smallest things, her life was blessed and the conflicts were resolved.
Sometimes I wonder if we complicate things too much sometimes. The gospel is simple. Applying the gospel to our lives is simple. The only thing that complicates things is ourselves! Because we are imperfect, that makes it harder but it’s always possible to apply these principles in our lives.
There are a lot of investigators and former investigators here but a whole lot of them haven’t made the choice to advance and be baptized because they don’t feel ready to apply the principles of the gospel. It’s really too bad because it’s so simple, but they haven’t been able to find this confidence and courage to do it. I think that’s why they need us :)
Missionary work really is like shining a ray of positivity and sunlight on these people’s lives. I love it :)
This morning, we did something super Tahitian with two of these eternal investigators, Vahinetua and Moe. We got up super early and went into the mountains to do "Cobra" where we collect and cut open coconuts to harvest the white part of the coconuts. We have to chop the coconuts in half, rip them apart, and cut under the coconut so that it comes out. After that, they lay them out to dry during a couple of days or weeks and then go and sell it to make different oils and soaps. Its hard work and they don’t earn as much as they deserve, that’s for sure! We left all clean and ready to go and when we came back we were COVERED in mud and soaking wet. We went and waited at the chapel for Mamie to come and pick us up and we were laughing so hard because as we were eating sandwiches in the rain sitting on the ground, we literally looked like homeless, dirty missionaries. Ha ha ha ha, what a good experience.
Last Monday two Elders put on a show with their burning sticks. I'm not sure what it is called in English but look, IT WAS COOL!
Look at all the coconuts.
Before our adventure into the mountains.
A coconut farm.
COBRA. We had fun but I got a mean blister on my hand that I hope won't get bigger.
Well anyways, that’s it for me this week! Love yall!!