Saturday, April 28, 2012

Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. ~ John 3:5

We have 10 baptisms planned for Saturday, from three branches so we’re “super excited” as the Elders would say. We can only attend 1 branch at a time and there are 7 active branches with two other inactive branches, (by inactive I mean there are no missionaries working there right now).
From our Branch we have Elder Butler with investigator Augustine & his wife. President Joseph, Sister Joseph and daughter Bailee.
Every member of the Church, upon accepting the baptismal covenant, becomes a disciple who has promised to stand as a witness of Jesus Christ at all times in any place he or she may be in.  The purpose of our witness is to invite people to come unto Him.
"Behold I say unto you, that as these things are true, and as the Lord God liveth, there is non other name given under heaven save it be this Jesus Christ, of which I have spoken, whereby man can be saved."

Today authority, keys, and ordinances have been restored to the earth. There are also scriptures and special witnesses. Those who seek God may receive baptism for the remission of sins and confirmation “by the laying on of hands for the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost” (D&C 20:41). With these precious restored gifts, our divine encounters will mostly involve the third member of the Godhead, the Holy Ghost.
“Remember that that which cometh from above is sacred” (D&C 63:64). His statement is more than a reminder; it is also a definition and an explanation. Light and knowledge from heaven is sacred.  It is sacred because heaven is its source.  
Sacred means worthy of veneration and respect.  By designating something as sacred, the Lord signals that it is of higher value and priority than other things.  Sacred things are to be treated with more care, given greater deference, and regarded with deeper reverence.  Sacred ranks high in the hierarchy of heavenly values.

May the Lord Bless us to ever and always recognize, remember, and hold sacred that which we have received from above. We testify that as we do, we will have power to endure the trials and overcome the challenges of our day. 

Friday, April 27, 2012

Little Girls are simply the BEST...

As we sit and wait for our Chuukese teacher to arrive, we hang out with the little girls and they teach us Chuukese.  They are adorable some of them speak really great English and look at them smiles.  Simply beautiful :) Oh that is a cute little boy in the back with the black and white wig on.  He was just happy to be hanging out teaching us Chuukese with the girls.
Look @ face is he darling or what :)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

An attitude of love

Isaac Ford from our Centerville home ward, donated glasses to our island. Isaac must have planned, developed, and lead this great service project. "The Eagle Project".  It demonstrates both leadership and a commitment to duty just like the handbook says.  Isaac was one of Sister Tiffany's Boy Scouts back in the day, and she says he was always a dedicated Scout.  
It was our District Conference weekend here so everyone was in from the outer islands. We had a special broadcast just for the Pacific Islands.  This was a perfect time for passing out glasses, so now all can read the scriptures.  They began to lineup right after the broadcast and by the time we arrived, it was a pretty long line.  We could only have 3 in the room at a time because we needed to make sure they were getting the correct lenses.  We used the Articles of Faith for a reading test, which was perfect since that is what the broadcast also talked about.  The left over glasses will be donated to the local Womens Center "CWC" here on the island.  They are working on getting an optometrist here this summer to help these people.  

 In Doctrine and Covenants 115:4–6, the Lord invites us to “arise and shine forth” so that our “light may be a standard for the nations.” He asks us to join together to support one another and become a “refuge from the storm.”

Elders Quorum President Mark from the Wichap Branch
“When ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God.”

 Merina and Useless "The newlyweds"
"Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, 
ye have done it unto me.
So much in life depends on our Attitude, it is the difference maker.
Believe—in yourself, in those around you, and in eternal principles.                          
Courage becomes a worthwhile and meaningful virtue when it is regarded not so much as a willingness to die manfully but as a determination to live decently.
 I want a pair of glasses, PLeAse LeT Me iN....

Even the Elder's came in for a pair.  This is Elder Robertson, he says he now looks cool :-)
That service to which all of us have been called, is the service of the Lord Jesus Christ.  If we truly listen, we may hear that voice from far away say to us, as it spoke to another, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.”  That each may qualify for this blessing from our Lord is our prayer. 
Our Savior teaches us to follow Him by making the sacrifices necessary to lose ourselves in unselfish service to others. If we do, He promises us eternal life, “the greatest of all the gifts of God”, the glory and joy of living in the presence of God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.  We thank you Centerville Canyon view Ward for your love and support with this project.  

Monday, April 23, 2012

We'll all pull together

Waiting for our boat ride to Tonoas.  Zone leaders, Oriko and Elder Tiffany...
We invited the Mwan Branch Seminary/Institute teacher, Oriko, to go with us.  Her family is from this outer island.  Sister Tiffany had a good feeling about having Oriko join us. Here's a little about Oriko, she speaks English, a loving mother and friend to all.  She loves the gospel and is devoted to her callings.  She took out her endowments in the Hawaii temple last October and had her husband sealed to her.  He has passed away and left her with 7 children. 
It was a pretty smooth boat ride over, the three of us with our boat driver Roger and his helper, Ranson.  We gathered up Elders Jones and Allen and Branch President Naka, then went on the back side of the island from where the Elders live to locate members.  Elders Jones and Valinotti had just baptized 2 men last month and we wanted to see how they were doing and meet the families plus get GPS reading. 
This is a picture of a new members wife, Oriko and myself.  What this beautiful investigator needed was some interaction with the women in the gospel.  As sisters in Zion, we'll all pull together and the blessings of God on our labors we'll seek: We'll build up His kingdom with earnest endeavor; We'll comfort the weary, and strengthen the weak.
Oriko speaks the language and knows the culture so she did all the talking.  She shared with this beautiful sister The Plan of Salvation and then bore her testimony.  We all just sat there listening ... It was very spiritual. 
How vast are our labors; how broad is our mission, If we only fulfill it in spirit and deed; Oh! naught but the Spirit's divinest tuition— Can give us the wisdom to truly succeed.
Oh! shall we not hasten to soothe the condition. Of the humble, the needy, the honest and pure? Oh! let us remember, whate'er our ambition—'Tis our duty, our mission, to comfort the poor. 'Tis the office of angels, conferred upon woman; And this is a right that, as women, we claim; To do whatsoever is gentle and human; To cheer and to bless in humanity's name.  Until this special time we didn't really know why Oriko needed to come with us, but after this lesson it was made clear.  This sister apologized to the Elder Jones for not feeling the spirit with them before and told him she felt the spirit testify to her and that she knew it was true.  
As sisters in Zion, we'll all pull together; The blessing of God on our labors we'll seek; We'll build up the kingdom with earnest endeavor;  We'll comfort the weary and strengthen the weak.  
Our Heavenly Father is mindful of each of us and our needs.  Each can be enlightened and uplifted and comforted as the Spirit of the Lord is felt. May we be filled with His Spirit each and every day.

The group listening and learning 
Husband and wife they were preparing food when we arrived.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Too wet for us two in the Tutu (shower)

When the rain comes, the best place not to be, is in the boat. Wet to the bone is the feelin. It's not cold though so you just let the rain fall and settle where it may. There is no where to get out of it so you just have to let it be a good soaking. The good news is that if you can get home in time before the sun comes out again, you don't have to take a shower that day. - - not.
This was just before the rain came down and here I am with the masked marauder. Our asst. boatman, Ranson. He does not seem to like the wind in his face. Sorry there were no pictures taken of us after we arrived back at the dock. Funny hair and all we just wanted to get home. Thank you very much.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Articles of Faith 8

We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.

"For the Children"

We are very excited about the New Public Children's Library in Chuuk.  This is "Chitimaye" she is the women in charge.  Everything here is donated including time putting it all together.  The Educational heads were in attendance of the grand opening and also were impressed by the efforts in putting this together.

If anyone would like to donate books to the library they will go to good use and be much appreciated.
DVD station they could also use educational DVD's
Things can be mailed to us @ 
PO Box 861, Moen, 
Chuuk FSM 96942
We will see that they get them...

Monday, April 16, 2012

More goodbye's

Many things about serving a mission are hard. One of the hardest is saying goodbye. Today Dr. and Sister Archibald left us to return to the States. We will surely miss them. It has been so wonderful having a doctor on call that does house calls. The Doctor helped the staff at the hospital get up to speed on many of the things they needed help with and he was always available to help. We have been truly blessed having them here in Chuuk. His wife is a sports nut which Elder Tiffany loved talking with her. And what a sweetheart, she brought so much love to this mission. What a blessing these two were able to serve in this mission.

Elder & Sister Eakin, Elder & Sister Archibald,
Elder & Sister Tiffany

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Baptism's and BBQ

It was an especially lovely afternoon when our District President had the opportunity to baptize his mother :) She is a lovely lady and what a beautiful place to get baptized. He was overjoyed to be able to perform the ordination. This was a very spiritual moment for all involved and the feeling was warm and wonderful.
The other young lady has been taught by the Zone leaders and lives a few houses away. She is the niece of the counselor to the Branch President. Her mother said she was not interested in joining the church but that she had her own church. She did however come to church Sunday to see her daughter confirmed. She attended all the classes and even attended our English class. We try to teach English using gospel principles to help them understand the gospel better. (The Chuukese don't have some of the words we have in English)
He lives right on the water so the baptism took place in the backyard.
After the baptism we had a program in the house with family and friends.
We spent time playing with the kids, ate chicken, rice, breadfruit and cinnamon bread. We left with a special feeling and we were very happy that we were able to attend this function.

I never dreamed I would EVER have to include "Dog"

We teach a temple prep class on Friday afternoons each week, helping couples prepare to go to the temple. It has been quite interesting to say the least. First, to clue you in, most of the people here don't have clocks so needless to say they never know what the time is and that means nothing starts on time. They walk wherever they go and depending on where they live it can be easy or extremely difficult. Our class is in a village that is mostly mountain and jungle terrain with one dirt road in and out. Next, we teach people that speak a different language and they don't have many of our words in English. One of the Elders in our class knows a little English and he helps translate for us, so sometimes it gets lost in translation .....
We must frequently use the gift of the Holy Ghost and we must be willing to rely on this divine gift and always keep it in good repair.
Truly we need the guidance of the Spirit, and we must be diligent to do those things necessary to have the companionship of that Spirit to help us. Specifically, we must keep the commandments, pray, study the scriptures, and repent weekly as we partake of the Sacrament.
This past week we were talking about the "Word of Wisdom", trying to explain what it is and what it means. Now remember they don't know what certain words mean and they also don't have some animals here like we have at home, namely cows. They do have Pigs & Chickens. I realize that I have to do it....say eat meat pork, chicken and DOG. Elder Tiffany just looked at me with a blank stare. Of course it was no big deal to the class. BTW we have been told by those who have tried it, dog tastes a lot like beef. I know what your thinking now...BEEF? Not Chicken, everything tastes like chicken. Not so my friend.
We are learning that we must “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto our own understanding. We are learning, in all ways to acknowledge him, and he will direct our paths. Grateful for that.
We will continue with our classes and help these people get ready to go to the Lord's Temple.
We have culture differences for sure, but we truly love the Chuukese people.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

"We are not perfect. The people around us are not perfect. People do things that annoy, disappoint, and anger. In this mortal life it will always be that way. Nevertheless, we must let go of our grievances. Part of the purpose of mortality is to learn how to let go of such things. That is the Lord’s way. Remember, heaven is filled with those who have this in common: They are forgiven. And they forgive."—President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Friday, April 13, 2012

Finally some "Super happy news"

Yes we are super super exceedingly happy that Elder Meldrum is back with us in Chuuk. It is awesome for him to come back to where his heart is and finish out his mission. He will serve on an outer island called Romanum, all the Elders love this island. It is beautiful out there.
This picture has Elder Meldrum's new companion Elder Sofele... then his buddy Elder Robertson...then him...then his other buddy Zone Leader Elder Butler.
Of course, Sister Tiffany broke the rules and had to give our Elder a hug when he returned. (She knows she is not suppose to give him a hug), But she too was happy to see him. Look at the face :0 He is always pulling some kind of funny face :)
We are all happy to be able to spend sometime with him before he leaves us and goes back to the states with his family.
This is Romanum.....
We feel the Lord is breaking us in on "goodbye's" and we don't like them. No one ever told us that goodbye would be this hard.
The Chuuk Zone is a tight group, you have to trust and depend on each other. The closest outside civilization is over 600 miles away. For the Elders this is a camping trip of a lifetime. This isn't your regular missionary experience. Here in Chuuk, everyday is an adventure :) You learn to roll with them...and be Pwapwa (happy) and trust fully on the Lord.
We are very proud of these young men, they all do amazing work here.

"God be with you till we meet again"

This has been a tough week for all of us here on Chuuk. It has been transfer week and those of you that don't know what that is > it means that every 6 weeks the Mission President may or may not be inspired to move the Missionaries from one area to another within the mission. In the Chuuk Zone we will lose 12 Elders who will be going home to the States within the next 6 months.
That means a lot of changes :(

This week started with us finding out that one of our Zone Leaders was going to be transferred to Guam and become the new AP. Elder Johnson has become dear to us and we have grown to love him. We have done a lot of work with him and his companion(s) while doing the GPS locating. He always turned it into real missionary moments.
Elder Johnson finally earned the right to wear the magic sunglasses...
Then Tuesday came and after study time and a prayer, we headed to the airport. Sister Tiffany made a candy lei out of tootsie rolls (thank you Brady & Kim). Elder Johnson loves tootsie rolls and you can't get them here on the island.
The other Elders put flowers on his head and a flower lei around his neck.
We pulled ourselves together to be strong and say our goodbye's. We don't know if we will see him before he goes home to the states. That is something only the Lord knows.
Saying our goodbye was very tender, we have grown to love this young Elder dearly.
He is from Idaho and a salt of the earth young man. He has been our surrogate son, our friend and Chuukese teacher.
These are our main island Elders, the outer island Elders couldn't come to say goodbye.

Elder Johnson boarded the plane with two other Elders, Jones and Lavitis, who were also going to Guam to be trainers for two new Elders when they bring them back.

Next day (Wednesday), we pulled in ALL the outer island Missionaries for transfers. No one knew what was going to happen except we knew Elder Malit would be going home, back to the states, so they wanted to give him time to go around the island and tell everyone Goodbye.
Us with the other two Elders that left us today.
Elder Valinotti and Elder Lapeyrouse. We pray they will be able to return with us before they go home to the states.

These young men are truly amazing and full of love for one another. We all met down at the airport and the outer island Branch Presidency was there and some branch members.
This was very, very hard to say our final goodbye's. A lot of tears were shed, they have become truly family with one another.
The Elders all stood together and sang "God be with you til we meet again" Very touching and tearful.