Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Me and the Missionaries at Santo Zone Conference

Tanna (Look it's green again!)
 Port Vila Week 8

 Dia Famle Blong Mi!

It was so good to talk to you for mother's day, I'm glad to hear that everything's great!  I think I let you know most of what happened last week but I will give you a little rundown.  So last Tuesday my
good friend Katum Benry from Saet Siwi flew from Tanna to Port Vila so he could fly to the New Zealand MTC.  He taught Avock and Rose with us and Moses and Norman and we did some shopping with him to prepare him to go on his mission.  I'm so proud of him, Katum is one of the first
people I met in Saet Siwi, he talked with me in English and taught me a little of his language while I served there and now he's ready to serve.  He will be serving here in Vanuatu.  That night we came to his setting apart and President Brewer set him apart.  Then Katum stayed at our house for the night.

Wednesday morning we checked in Katum at the airport at 5am  He flew at 7am and then at 9am me, Elder Smiler, President, and Sister Brewer checked in the airport to fly to Santo.  We arrived and it was soooooo green!  I forgot how green these islands actually are.  The Cyclone really changed how efate and tanna looks.  We arrived there and I saw Elder Child, Elder Siaka (from inapkasu), and many other missionary friends.  Then we went on exchanges with the Zone Leaders. The Zone Leader there are Elder Brooks and Elder Lomu.  I went with Elder Brooks and we walked through the bush to a village called Teproma.  We passed other member's houses who weren't there but a mama
named Tesi and Papa named Malachi were home and we taught mama Tesi about the book of mormon.  Then we went home and we had 10 missionaries staying at the ZL's house (because there's nowhere else to keep them).

Thursday morning we had our Zone Conference and it was like the one we had in Port Vila, focused on preparing investigators to be baptized.  President also told some stories about the Cyclone to help
them know what was going on at that time.  After conference we had a big lunch at the Santo Hotel.  We ate there last year in January when I went to conference while I was in Gaua.  Wow, I can't believe that was more than a year ago!  Well we ate and then me and Elder Smiler had to check in the airport to fly back to Port Vila so we could go to Tanna the next day.

Friday morning we checked in with the Zone Leaders Elder Dakunimata and Elder Killpack at the airport at 5am and boarded a small plane to fly to Tanna.  I slept most of the way because I had been waking up before 5am the last few days and I was eager to see how the island was.  To my surprise, leaves were growing and the island was a lot greener than before.  I was very happy.  The roads were very muddy due to a week of heavy rain and the lord has blessed the island with water.  President Brewer sent us for a few objectives 1; clean and prepare the ZL's house for future missionaries to come, 2; attend the Whitegrass Chapel Dedication on Saturday, and 3; go to church with
the members in whitegrass on Sunday

Our good old friend Moses Kapalu picked us up and took us to Lenakel in his small bus.  We had a small delay because a nail got in the tire and we had to change it.  We got to Isangel and checked our house and to our surprise it was completely remodeled and it looked beautiful!  Better than before the Cyclone.  But we saw some clothes and bags inside that didn't belong to us.  We talked to the home-owner and they said that some people from Port Vila came to fix some of their buildings in Lenakel but had no where to stay so they had to force themselves in the house.  They said that they would leave on Saturday.  It was alright, we changed plans to stay at the Whitegrass house right behind the Church there.

We stayed there and helped the members load food on trucks to bring the food to their branches.  That was another big blessing I saw, people were eating!  There was no hunger and the lord had blessed
everyone with food.  The people in Tanna and some in Port Vila have been very amazed.  After the Cyclone just about every house and church was blown down, except for ours, and ours is the only one that has been sending and sharing the food with the people.   We basically camped out at the Whitegrass house (the solar power didn't work) but it was alright, my whole mission has been camping out!  I love it!

Saturday morning I woke up and saw a few kids planting little palm trees around the church grounds, I helped them out and planted with them and members of the Whitegrass Branch, Middlebush Unit, and Lenakel Unit all met for the Whitegrass dedication.  I saw many friends who came.  Tiffany and Ken, President Isaac from greenpoint, and many others, and everybody was glad to see us missionaries!  They really want the missionaries to come back.  There are so many people interested in hearing the gospel!  Tanna will prosper much in the future I know it!

Well we had the Dedication Program and we opened with a hymn and prayer and a member gave a talk about the history of the branch and the District President, President Nalawas dedicated the
building.  Then afterwards we all ate, everyone and we all just socialized and hung out.  I put on a little magic show for the kids and played with them for most of the day.  You know how I am with
kids.  One of them had a parrot that we played with, it was cool, so much fun to be with the people in Tanna again.  We decided to stay in whitegrass another night and go to Lenakel Sunday night.

Sunday morning we went to church and had priesthood class and Sunday School and then Sacrament meeting.   They asked me and Elder Killpack to talk and everyone forgot that it was mother's day and we chose to talk about the love of Papa God.  I gave the talk and gave my last testimony, it was a little hard, I had to cry because I haven't been able to say goodbye to the people yet.  We were forced out after the cyclone.  It was good for me so now I can focus on the work ahead of me in my new areas in Vila.  After church we attended some ordinations of some Elders with the District President and then I said goodbye and we followed a truck to Lenakel. 

We got there to our house but people were still staying there.  Apparently their flight got changed to
another day so we tried to work something out.  There were already 4 staying there at the moment but we had nowhere else to stay and the people came and we talked with them and we decided that they would sleep in the 2 bedrooms in the house and that we'd sleep in our study room and dining room.  And everything was fine.  That's another thing I love about this place.  There was no complaining, no argument, we just said "we'll all share the house tonight" and they said "i gud" (sounds good) and we stayed there for the night.

This morning we walked around in Lenakel to find a member to transport us to the airport at the time in which my family called.  After talking to my family we flew to Port Vila, we had a little delay and
we got back and at 3pm had our office meeting.  Then we dropped the ZL's back to their house and then had a good hamburger for dinner and just found time now to email you. All is going well here and I've been so blessed to be here.

Mi lavem yufala tumas!


Elder Beynon

Planting palm trees with some kids

Doing magic tricks for the people

Going to Lanakel

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