Thursday, February 23, 2017

TUESDAY - February 21, Surprise...emailing one day early this week!

 Beautiful Savai'i

Emailing early this week because we have to go to Apia later today and the boat leaves at 4pm.

This week was good.

Thursday was pretty funny. Our fafaga was an older couple, probably late 60s. We sat down and the wife is half blind, and she says, "That's a good looking white guy in front of me." My companion and I couldn't stop laughing.

Friday we did two baptismal interviews for missionaries. We got home around 8pm. The culture here in Savai'i is very strong and each night they have 30 minutes where you're supposed to sing a hymn and say a family prayer.  No one is allowed to be out on the streets. A bunch of elderly men in the village come out on the street and patrol.  Cars are not allowed to pull in or out of anywhere and they have to keep going straight or stop and pull off to the side and then wait for it to be over.  So we pulled into the chapel without realizing it was the "sa" (the prayer time). We got in trouble, but thankfully he just let us off with a warning.

Another example of the culture in Savai'i happens on Sundays. In one village, if you aren't at church you get fined $10. Even if you're on the chapel grounds but not inside the chapel, you get fined. Pretty different, but I'm sure that would help us at home.

Tomorrow we have a meeting with all the zone leaders in the mission in Apia so that should be interesting...

My laundry

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

An unexpected transfer and now a zone leader in Savaii...Tuesday, February 14th

"Just thinking about how cool Samoa is..."

From mom:  Yeah!!!  We finally heard from Justin again.  He was transferred to Savai'i and now has his "p-day" (personal day) on Wednesday, which is Tuesday for us.  It was great to get so many photos and read about how happy he is in his new area.

Since this last week has been so crazy, I'm just gonna start from last  Wednesday....

So we got the transfer calls last Sunday and I was going to stay in my area and train a new missionary. Wednesday we had the training meeting and things were going really well. Then, president called me and another Samoan elder who I'm familiar with and he sat us down. The first thing he did was invite Elder Sa'u (the elder next to me in the photo of the two of us) to say a prayer. When that happens, hearts usually start pounding...After the prayer,  president says, "We're gonna make a change. We need zone leaders in Savai'i. Savai'i West Zone. Faiaai is your area."  We were so excited!   Elder Sa'u (now my companion) is from my first area which I served in for 8 months. Then later, we were together again in Tutuila for 4 months. 

After that happened, we rushed to my house and cleaned up my clothes and got things ready to pack up and leave.  We had to hurry to get to the last boat that goes to Savaii. Luckily, it's only an hour boat ride.

"How we do transfers in Samoa"

We got there and found out that the zone leaders who were there before us and were getting transferred crashed the car pretty badly.  Our area is super far away from the wharf so we took the other zone leaders' car and did transfers for two zones.  It was a very long day.

The next day we had to get up at three in the morning to take elders to the boat that leaves at 6 in the morning.  That's just one example of how far away from everything we are.  Then we had to wait for the elders coming to Savai'i from Upolu.  The boat was supposed to get to the wharf around 1p but didn't arrive until 4.  So we were stuck at the wharf all day which was pretty boring.  Then we finally dropped the missionaries off, got home, and slept.

Friday we once again had to get up at three in the morning to take two elders to the wharf who were finishing up their missions.  Then we had to go do baptismal interviews for the zone.  We ended up setting up a marriage to take place the next day on top of the baptism.

Saturday we did more interviews, got the wedding done, and attended the baptism all of which were really great.  A very productive day!

Sunday was church and I got the opportunity to introduce myself to the ward.  We are currently covering 5 wards which is over half the stake.  So I'll be introducing myself a lot more this upcoming month...
Monday, before we were able to go do some lessons, we had to do another transfer that ended up taking us around all of Savaii.  It was super sweet and incredibly beautiful, but pretty long and took us about 4 hours.  Then we finally had the opportunity to get out and do some visits.

 "Our Zone"
 "Me and the Prez"

Tuesday we had a zone meeting with president which was awesome. We talked about the Book of Mormon and how all those we teach have to be reading it.

Wednesday, today, P-day, we had to once again get up at three to take reports and baptismal papers to missionaries going to Upolu.  Then we did some shopping. 

So as you can is super busy but I LOVE IT!!!

 Me and Elder Sa'u