Monday, January 30, 2017


Monday, January 23, 2017

Working in Sharpi

Gwendaline is our newest miracle.  She is all set for baptism this Saturday at 10 a.m. She came to church yesterday with two of her nephews and they loved Primary.  Our branch has been having quite a few problems lately, but the Primary is the one program that seems to always stay strong.  The mamas that teach are phenomenal and are some of the strongest members in our branch.  Gwendaline has also learned to love the gospel principles class that just started and is taught by one of the returned missionaries in our branch, Dax.  He recently returned home from serving a mission in France and is also our district clerk.  He has been wonderful at taking care of the responsibilities of our branch president as President Granger tries to find a new one.

Sista Norton went back to Mango on Friday with her new companion, Sista Welter, from Micronesia.  We cleaned out their house the day before Sista Welter came.  We walked into an awful smelling house and came to find that the neighbors had turned off the fridge.  All the meat, fruit and veggies had been rotting in the fridge for over a month.  There was mold everywhere!!  We did a thorough clean but the house still smells awful.

We also filled out the papers for Andre and Annie's wedding yesterday.  Apparently you have to announce the wedding for three weeks in a row at a public setting so we have to push the wedding back to 18 February as well as Andre's baptism.  Both of them were understandably upset but, as stated in the 12th article of faith: "We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers and magistrates.  In obeying, honoring and sustaining the law".  Therefore, we will just have to push it back to the 18th.  The thing that makes all of this tricky is that the municipal posts a paper announcing the marriage during those three weeks.  There is a place for comments and if anyone puts a comment against the marriage, the marriage is blocked.  Please keep them in your prayers that no one will get upset and make a comment.

We continue to visit Etna, Jinette, Latrisha and Anerose and all are doing well.  Nicolas continues to face a lot of doubt, but we are working with him a lot to help him see where the doubt is coming from and where he can find truth and answers to his questions.

I think that's a wrap for this week!  Love  you all and have a wonderful week!

Monday, January 16, 2017

Miracles and More Miracles!

This week was an eventful week.  Anerose was baptized on Thursday.  She requested a quiet, small baptism and that is just what we did.  She has already been such a blessing to us.  This past week she has given us three referrals, brought her friend to the baptism on Saturday, and has taught with us as well.  She is just so happy to help as well as involve her two little boys.

Sunday after church, Etna, Jinette and Latrisha were baptized.  They are our miracles!  We had scheduled for Amina's baptism this week, but because of complications she wasn't able to be baptized.  We taught Lisa earlier this week and she told us that she was no longer interested in storying with us.  As we were leaving her house Etna ran up to us and said that even if Lisa didn't want to get baptized she wanted to.  The baptism was one of the most amazing and spiritual baptisms I have attended on my mission.  God really has prepared them and has prepared their families as well.  We will continue to teach Papa Nicolas and Joseph with their children and wives.

Saturday my LAST TRANSFER CALL came!!!  I will be staying in Sharpi with Sista Betero and I could not be happier!  We set goals at the beginning of our first transfer together and we accomplished all of them.  Now we have six more weeks to do even more.

We also followed up with Andre and Annie this week and they are cleared to get married on February third and then Andre will be baptized on the fourth.   Just another testimony of how powerful prayer combined with fasting can be. Now we just have to go through the fun process of paper work to make it happen! 

I know this church is true and I love sharing it with others!  Nothing beats missionary work!!

Monday, January 9, 2017


John was baptized this past Saturday!  He was baptized along with the
branch president's little 8-year-old boy.  It was a great experience and he had
lots of his friends show up to support him.  One of his best friends,
Betero, was there to help him the whole time.  Betero will be a great
support for him.

We've continued to work with Annerose and she is set for baptism on
Thursday.  She doesn't want a lot of people there and so we
coordinated with the branch president to make her baptism small and
quiet.  I am so excited for her!  She has been working for this for
almost 6 months now.  She will be a solid member and the gospel will
continue to bless her and her two little boys more than ever.
Lisa is also set for baptism this Saturday.  She has been great!  She
continues to help Julie and without fail has a new person for us to
teach every time we go to her house.  We started teaching her Uncle
yesterday and he was very interested.  He actually already had a Book
of Mormon
and has read a little of it.

We met with Annie and Andre yesterday as well and set a marriage date
with them.  They will be married on February 3 if all goes as planned.
We fasted with them this past week and then went and spoke with
Annie's Dad to ask for permission, which was granted.  It was a
miracle and we are so thankful for God's hand in this whole process.

We made up a game this week called "mi save yu no wantem" or 'I know
you don't want it" when we contact.  We introduce ourselves and if
they say they are interested we teach them, but if they say they aren't
we take turns teaching a principle of the gospel before we go.  Like
this:  "I know you aren't interested and we're about to go, but before
we go I just want you to know that God is our Heavenly Father and he
loves each of us."  Then the next sista says, "We know you aren't
interested and we're just about to go, but before we go we want you to
know that this gospel will bless your family." back and forth, back
and forth and we see how much we can teach them.  Most people just
start laughing and it it's fun for everyone.  Even if we don't end up
teaching them it helps us make new friends with people that we pass on
a regular basis.

I love the work out here!  It is wonderful and God has so much in
store for the wonderful people here in Sharpi.  This really is the
true gospel and does hold so much truth and happiness!

Monday, January 2, 2017

Christmas and New Year's Celebrations

Sister Norton and I with native dancers just home from a performing trip on a cruise ship.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!  Since it's been two weeks since I have been able to email I'll give you a quick summary of what has been going on over here in Santo.

Christmas:  Christmas week we had the chance to share the message of Christmas with many, many new people in our area.  We taught using the church's picture/art book and it really seemed to bring the story to life for our investigators.  Our branch Christmas party took place on Christmas Eve. We loaded up a bunch of our investigators into a transport and drove to the church around 5 p.m. The program didn't end up starting until about 7:30 p.m. The definition of “prompt” is lost on many people here!  The Primary children acted out the Nativity for all the parents and then the missionaries performed.  The missionaries from the Philippines sang Christmas carols in Tagalog and then the Americans sang in English and the sistas from the Pacific danced.  The program was followed by a yummy giant plate of rice and soup. J  It was really enjoyable and our investigators loved every minute.

 Christmas day we went to church with a few investigators and enjoyed a wonderful program about enduring to the end.  Later that night we had a small devotional with all the missionaries in Santo, ate dinner and watched a movie.  The highlight was definitely skyping the family!!  

On the 27th we found out that Sista Norton from Vancouver, Washington would be joining our companionship.  She was serving with a sista who was waiting to go to Tahiti and when her visa came Sista Norton was left without a companion.  We are happy to have her and to learn from her.

Freshly cut pineapples
We've continued to work in our area like crazy.  Amina was doing wonderful and following the word of wisdom so well, but this past weekend she fell to temptation.  We'll have to continue to work with her.  She is working so hard but is having a really hard time.  She wants to do better, and I know that she will eventually become clean.  

John is set for baptism this Saturday.  He has been coming to church for months and months all by himself some weeks, and at other times with Annerose and her little boys.  While we were doing our planning we both had John pop into our minds and knew he needed to get baptized.  We talked to his dad and he agreed to let him get baptized.  We also hope for the chance to teach John's dad in the near future.  

Well, that's about it for this week.  The sun is shining and life is good over here in Vanuatu.  Thank you again for all your emails and letters and packages this Christmas.  It means so very much!