|First Day Together|
It is my first week back in the Visitor Center in Laie, and it has definitely been an adventure. There were so many changes made while I was gone, including getting 10 new Sisters in the VC. It's been an adjustment big time, and it has definitely been hard trying not to think about my investigators back in Honolulu and Maui, but I am already seeing why I am needed back here in Laie =)
My companion, Sister Toleafoa, is AMAZING. She is a big ball of energy and a heart of gold! She was born and raised in Western Samoa, so she is teaching me a lot about hard work as well as teaching me the language. We're trying our best by posting notes in our pad on various objects labeled in Samoan. My favorite one being, "tagata seilili," prounounced tah-ngah-tah say-eelee-eelee....meaning: New Investigator =)
After S. Toleafoa and I did our week plan, we decided to go see an investigator that Sister Sekona and I had taught when we were in this ward. We went to go see her (Lua), and she wasn't home. As we were driving out of the driveway and down the street, we see her walking home!! I was so excited to see her again. We had taught her and her brother for baptism, but were waiting for the okay by both parents for baptism; and that still being the case. We pulled beside her and her face just lit up!! I told her that I was back in the Samoan ward, and we want to prepare her for baptism! She just jumps up and says, "Like, right now!!!!?" I'm pretty sure if we had said yes she would have made sure she was ready in less than two minutes, haha. But we told her of course not right now, but, hopefully, soon! We set an appointment with her and said goodbye! Sister Sekona and I were so sad when we found out that they would not be able to be baptized quite yet, and so I am praying that now is the right time, and that I will be able to witness her and her brother's baptism before I ever (if ever) leave this ward. At that moment, I knew that I was meant to be back here and especially in this ward.
I had another moment helping me to feel reassured that I am supposed to be back here in the Visitor Center. We had run into multiple Samoan families coming in to the VC from Honolulu!!! I, of course, having been in that ward, tell them about where our chapel is and the time of the services. One particular family left us with their contact information so that the missionaries (Sister Saena and her companion) can teach them. It was perfect, I don't know how else we would have been able to connect with them. We even made the connection of some friends that they have, that attend that Samoan ward, my previous ward,. But, if I hadn't served in that ward, and if I wasn't back in the VC to tell them more about the ward, who knows how long it would have taken them to find the missionaries. I called Sister Saena immediately so that they can teach their family!
Sister Toleafoa and I were attending Sunday school in our YSA 2nd ward and a member walks in with a friend (obviously not a member) and sits right next to us. It was all too perfect. After Sunday School, the member turns to us and introduces Shane to us. We immediately get to know him, finding out that he is from Japan. The second those words came out of his mouth another member comes over and asks, "Wait, who said they're from Japan?" And Shane admitted that he did. The member (Dillan) then starts speaking fluent Japanese to him, having just gotten home from his mission in Japan. Once again, perfect!! We were able to set up an appointment right then and there, and have a 'fellowshipper' for Shane as well. There have been so many times this week that are constant reminders of Heavenly Father's perfect plan, and I am so grateful that I get to be a part of this missionary work.
|"Elder Bernal" from the PMG The District DVDs was on our tram!!|
In General Conference, Elder Nelson talked about "catching the wave of missionary work," Of course, we missionaries in Hawaii, loved the theme of the talk, but it means even more to us as we have seen the difference it is making in our wards. Our wards are beginning to truly focus on "catch the wave" of missionary work. I know that without the members there to help us and support us, to be fellowshippers, to smile and say hello to a stranger at church, to reach out to the less-active, this work would not continue on. We must build the kingdom of God, and focus on gathering ALL of God's children together as one. I know that when we all catch the wave of missionary work lives are changed and forever families are made. I am so grateful to be a part of this great work. I know it is true, and I know it will bless our lives!! I love you all, and love getting your e-mails and letters!
Sending all our sunshine,