Monday, June 20, 2016

10 Months!!!

Selfie at emails with Elder R and a picture of Bora Bora on his computer haha.
Hike from last week!
Dear Family,

The update for transfers: I am staying another six weeks in Papeete 2! Woot woot! That means I will have spent over 1/4th of my mission here! But I am happy because it is the best sector ever. Between the assistants and us we have 5 baptisms on plan for this weekend, we're totally leading the mission and feeling the spirit and it's cool. Elder P has finished as assistant and will go finish his mission in the islands. The new guy in our house will be Elder F, the new assistant. He's Tahitian, so I will be the only English speaker in the house! Good bye to English for a while... Also, Elder R finishes his mission in 6 weeks, so I get to witness his "death" on the mission. Haha.

Highlights of the week: remember last week I was in a hurry to email because we had to go to a family night? Well, the family night was in Fautaua Val, a quartier in our sector. And pretty much the whole neighborhood was there! We watched Meet the Mormons on a big projector screen, then ate barbecued chicken afterwards! A ton of potential investigators were there, and they said they really felt the spirit. So all week we were working in Fautaua Val contacting people who were at the "soirée" (family night). We have lots of potential and new amis and it was so great! Our ward is really the best ever.

Another highlight: Elder Pearson of the seventy came with Sister Carol F. McConkie and Linda S. Reeves and their spouses (young women's presidency and relief society presidency). They spoke to all the mission on Friday morning and that was awesome. We sang "I'll go where you want me to go" for them and Elder Pearson was really touched. He said he loves that song. He mentioned that as a seventy he has learned that he "belongs to the church." Think of the word "belongs." The church doesn't belong to us, we belong to the church. We really need to commit our lives to serving the Lord. It was a great talk, I felt the spirit. Also, we got to talk with each of them and shake their hands. For the first time in 10 months, when I said I was from Washington, they asked "Oh, where in Washington?" So refreshing. The normal response from people here in Tahiti is "Oh, do you know Obama?!" Elder Pearson was the mission president in Tacoma in 2005, so he knew where Moses Lake is. Cool! Also, I was reading his bio on the program for our meeting, and he happens to have an MBA from Harvard Business School. Seeing things like that continues to inspire me to dream big and go after my goals.

Another highlight: since our ward is awesome and happens to be right next to the temple, this Sunday for church Sister Reeves came to our ward. She and her husband spoke in sacrament. After, during the third hour I was outside priesthood opening exercises. The way our chapel is, is that there is a big courtyard in the middle, and all the classes open into the courtyard. So I could see into the relief society classroom. What do you know? I saw Sister Reeves up front with her arm around one of my investigators and smiling and talking with her (via an interpreter). Yes, my investigators were being taken care of by a member of the relief society general presidency, no big deal. I found out after that a bunch of my investigators had a chance to bear their testimony and everyone felt the spirit. It was a testimony to me that we are led by people chosen and inspired by God. Anyways, remember the couple who just got baptized and married two weeks ago? They came to church yesterday with one of their daughters, who is 19 years old. Apparently her mom (new convert) bore her testimony in relief society, and after the daughter (named) bore her testimony too! What?! We haven't even taught her yet! She said she felt many "deep emotions" at church, aka the spirit! So we fixed a lesson with her and yesterday afternoon after the chapel, we taught her the plan of salvation and engaged her to be baptized in 13 days, the 2 of July, by her father who happened to receive the Aaronic Priesthood last week! Miracles are happening here! She was so excited and touched and said yes right away! Bam! The Lord is preparing people for the gospel, this family is gold. I am so grateful and humbled to be able to be the instrument the Lord uses to bring his children into the truth and light of the Gospel.

Another highlight: today is P Day.

Haha it is so fun to hear from everyone. I have been out for 10 months as of yesterday! What?!
That's about it for this week. I am doing well.  K
eep praying for me, I need it!

Also, the girl we tracted into who is getting baptized on Tuesday gave me an awesome mother of pearl shell with Elder Barlow engraved on it, and mountains and palm trees and "Tahiti" and their family's name engraved on it. It is a huge beautiful shell, what a treasure! Cool, huh? Today is raining really hard, so we will probably end up playing basketball or something. No hiking this week;(

Love you all and miss you tons! Keep me updated on the comings and goings of everyone at home!


Elder Barlow

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