Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Mixed Bag - MTC Week #8

Ia ora na!

This week was, well, a mixed bag! There were some great moments, and some pretty gnarly ones as well for us as a whole district.

I just want to start off by saying that yesterday, June 23, was absolutely amazing! It was the worldwide leadership broadcast for missionary work, and it was such a privilege to sing in that huge choir. I felt the Spirit so strongly throughout the broadcast, and having the opportunity to hear and see the Quorum of the Twelve speak was such a fantastic experience. It makes me so stoked for missionary work! It was definitely a historic moment for missionaries, with new announcements such as a wider utilization of technology and tours of our chapels, as well as a large emphasis on member missionary duty. Such a great experience!

At the broadcast

The Tahitian is just getting better and better. The more I study it, the more I truly love it! I'm pretty sure I like it better than French at this point, and it will hopefully be the language that I can use the most out in the mission field. I definitely have a lot to still learn, but that's the great part about it. We had our first Tahitian Training Resource Center this week, which is where we basically practice teaching to members who volunteer to come in and be taught. This guy, Brother Parsons, comes all the way down from Ogden to have us teach him. He served in Tahiti like 50 years ago, and back then no one spoke French, so he spoke Tahitian on his mission. He was also one of those guys who was just thrown onto the island, didn't even know how to say hello, and still served and learned the language. He's an inspiring guy, and he's also picked up Samoan and Maori over the course of his life.When we taught him, he practically taught us much at the same time, just through his responses to our questions and his own great insights. I love the TRC, its one of my favorite parts of the week for sure.

Lessons are still going great. Definitely remembered to leave commitments this time! The Tahitian lessons are so awesome, because I truly realized during those lessons that the Spirit can still be so prominent, even if we have a hard time communicating. Our Tahitian investigator "Nohoaru" is pretty sweet, just our teacher Frere Asay role playing of course, but we still feel a love for him even if he's not a real investigator! I'm pretty excited to actually teach real investigators in Tahiti, because I can imagine the love for them being so much greater.

So on to why it was a mixed back. This week, one of those 24 hour stomach flu viruses has been sweeping the MTC once again. And I will say that I was lucky to dodge it, so far! Sister Chytraus, Sister Taylor and my companion Elder Lovelock were all stricken, in addition to tons of others in our zone. It was pretty scary, not gonna lie! Especially when we had the broadcast coming up on Sunday. I was praying so hard that I wouldn't get sick, and most of all get sick on that Sunday. My prayers seemed to have been heard, so I'm super grateful! But honestly, since Wednesday my stomach hasn't been sitting quite right. This food really isn't that appealing to me anymore I suppose. Either that or I am getting sick, just nothing's come up yet (and by up, I mean literally... "up"). We'll see what happens! All that matters is that I went to the broadcast on Sunday, so I'll be happy at this point, whether sick or healthy!

Elder Herring left for France this morning, along with about 15 others. I'm gonna miss that guy, and I was so lucky to have him in the same zone. He's gonna do so great out there, and France couldn't be luckier to have him. A faaitoito, to'u taetae!

Also a shout out to those who sent me packages! I would write you all back if I had your addresses, but since I don't I'll just say thank you! No kidding, those packages are so rad and always awesome for missionaries to get, and I totally love and appreciate you guys. Thanks so much!

So along the lines of the broadcast yesterday, I just want to stress the role of the member in missionary work. Without the members' help, work would be so much harder for the full-time missionaries. We count on you all so much for referrals and for your guidance. For one thing, don't be scared to share the gospel! Feel free to casually bring it up in conversation if you find appropriate, and never feel shy about inviting someone to a ward activity or to Church or to read a Book of Mormon. I look back and I feel so lame because I was totally shy to share the gospel before the mission! This gospel is a great thing, and is only good news, and the chances of sincerely offending somebody because of inviting them to do something is not very big. So, take a chance, it wouldn't hurt! Also, don't be afraid of the missionaries! Don't think that we don't need your help or anything, because we really do. Talk to us, go teach with us, go on splits, give us news, anything! We wanna be your friends, and your help is much needed. This is a golden age for missionary work, bigger than ever before, so like Russell M. Nelson said, catch the wave! Join in the effort to share this magnificent gospel, and bring others closer to Christ and bring them to the knowledge of the true plan of happiness for this life. Blessings are in store for those who do, and such work brings true happiness. I testify of this!

Anyway, I want to say I love you all, and I appreciate your love, prayers and letters. Don't forget me, especially because once I get to Tahiti post will be tough to receive. Keep on living well, mauruuru ia outou!

Ua here au ia outou,
Orometua Popo

Elder Ball

Please start writing Casey in Tahiti now.  It takes 3 weeks for letters to get to Tahiti.  It would be great if he got letters that first week supporting and encouraging him.  The address is:

Tahiti Papeete Mission
Elder Ball, Casey 
B.P. 93
Papeete, Tahiti 98713
French Polynesia

Write it like a regular letter/envelope but put on 3 stamps.

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