malo lelei Dec 21, 2015

malo lelei

 

so i walk into the meeting for trainers and new missionaries. there are 3 english elders. 2 white. 1 poly. first thought that comes to my mind, “i want him!” go over, introduce myself to them. hmm the poly is from tonga. okay okay. we get to the transfer meeting and Elder Tu’ifua is called up to the front. all my friends around me start patting my back and saying dude i hope thats your boy! and president say, “elder tu’ifua will be serving the elder Larose’s district…” and thats when i knew. it was true, i do have brown blood! hahaha so my boy is elder Tu’ifua, from Tonga! he is so awesome. so humble so willing to serve, and so out here for the right reasons. english is his 2nd language but hes picking it up pretty well. and hes teaching me tongan! so the subject means hello! i can say hello, how are you, im good, thank you, i love you, and son, but dont know how to spell em yet. haha its so cool to be his trainer and im so glad hes the one i get to train! he plays rugby and is one tough dude.

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its so funny to teach him about things they dont have. the food has been fun for starters. we took him to walmart the night he got here and he had no idea what to do. haha he was just like “what do you get?” so ive made some foods for him to try so we know what he likes. wednesday, the churchills came and picked us up and took us up to castle rock, where elder hunter is now, and we met him at costa vida. were waiting in line and i said do you know what you want? taco? burrito? he just looked at me with innocent eyes and said, elder what you get i get. hahaha hes had a burrito, fajitas, filipino curry. i made him chicken alfredo, and quesadillas. hes liked it all but the best was when i made a quesadilla for him, he pointed at the bag of torillas and said “we buy a lot of those” hahaha.

 

so tuesday when he got here, we had dinner, went to bishops for a little while, and then had a lesson with a couple in the ward that is technically “less active” although they attend church every sunday. long story there. but theyre super nice. shes just a little cookoo sometimes. but she said, oh youre new? youre teaching :). haha i had warned him she might do this. but he did awesome. we were teaching the plan of salvation – which i think is the hardest lesson – and he just rocked it. and we were switchin off super well even though we didnt have a chance to plan for it.

 

wednesday we taught the third lesson, the gospel of jesus christ, to emma, an 8 year old weve been teaching. her baptism was saturday and luckily we got to go. there is a couple, phil and alicia that we taught the restoration when we taught it to emma, becuase they had them over for dinner when we came. but we hadnt gotten a return appointment. we had stopped by once but they werent home. so we finnaly got to see em at the baptism. i had a copy of the picture book book of mormon for alicia because i told her about that and she seemed interested in it. so we talked, i gave her that, and we set up an apt, for tomorrow! super excited. so that was 2 new investigators by technicality because we needed the return appointment.

 

thursday we visited with michael and i got real with him for a minute. he came to church last sunday to hear ryan call give his farewell talk. and said he could feel the love there. i addressed that and talked about the spirit. found out he had never received any formal lessons so i taught the restoration on the spot, and told him he was feeling the holy ghost. and i could tell that he was. but my thoughts are that he is too scared to act upon the promptings. its sad because i can see that it affects him, but he wont act on it. he quickly tries to change the subject and when i invited him to come to church again, he said lets calm down a minute. the holidays aare crazy times talk to me after the holidays.

 

after meeting with him we tracted for a bit to show elder tu’ifua how to do that. i talked to like 3 people and he said. i think im ready to try. i found out that he was expecting the people that turn us down to chase us away yelling at us, because thats what they do in tonga. haha we had some good laughs, and it was freezing cold, but we hadnt prepped for it too well. haha once i realized i was having troubles talking cause my face was so numb i decided wed go thaw out at the calls around the corner for a minute. and our dinner was just down the road form them. after dinner we met with a family, the m’s. just set up ant apt. with them to share a message with the family, but it turned out they have a 7 year old turning 8 in march, so we decided we’ll just get a head start on the baptism lessons. haha that was cool.

 

so friday was cool becuase we got 2 new investigators! we went tracting, found a young guy named jordan, shared a bit about the book of mormon and went back sunday! he commented feeling a difference when reading the book of mormon! we taught the first lesson. and set up for this saturday! so cool. then friday night we got to meet with a 15 year old kid named kailan. his dad is less active, and his step mom had her records removed a long time ago. he randomly decided he wants to get baptized! so we met with him and set up a timeline, and answered some questions because he’ll be out of town for 2 weeks. we gave him the pamphlets and a book of mormon to study from while hes gone. hes a good kid. and he came to church sunday!

 

its been a good week for sure! love my boy and am looking forward to christmas. as for details, we arent sure yet. i was thinking about doing google hangouts if i can. we’ll either do it at bishops or the calls. the calls plan is to have us over on christmas and do all that but theyre taking ryan to idaho saturday to see family, and if the weather is gonna be bad they might leave christmas day, in which case the teeples will have us over. we are allowed to use the mission phone so worse comes to worse we do that but we should be able to video chat.

 

‘ofa atu!

(i love you)

 

elder stark

December 14, 2015

highlight of this week. THE TEMPLE. so that family that sent a picture was the calls, and it was after we went to the temple with them. their son ryan is leaving on his mission at the end of the month and went through the temple on friday. we got permission from president to go with him and it was so awesome! we went with ryan and his dad early. they had to go to distribution center, and deseret book. so we just went into the temple and did a session and some initiatories before his session. so awesome. i loved it.

 

wednesday we had our zone conference. thats the big one from 9 am to 4 pm. and there were like 75 missionaries at this one. it was pretty cool to be with that many and to learn so much. they talked less about the need to be obedient, and more about how if we develop more love for the savior we will want to be more obedient. we watched a video about the saviors crucifixion and the spirit just dumped all over the room. such a cool feeling. one of the APs shared his testimony about the atonement in his life, and that was awesome too. really cool for sure.

 

thursday was the train the trainers meeting. there are 7 missionaries coming in. 2 spanish, 2 sisters, and three english elders. it was pretty funny, cause there is one sister that is being a trainer right out of training, then theres me who went from being trained, to half way training, to ful training. and one other trainer has only trained half way cause his guy went home early. but the other 4 have already trained before. it was a pretty interesting group of trainers. the meeting was really cool though and i think i learned quite a bit.

 

so tomorrow is when it all goes down! so i know i am staying here through christmas for sure and it should even be through like february. but i am super excited and kinda anxious to meet my new guy. i wonder what he will be like! haha i wonder how he’ll like being in a biking area for winter? haha all will tell in due time.

 

our investigator lisbeth has been pretty hard to get in contact with. shes really busy and usually gives us a window of time to come by but ends up being busy. or last week she told us 3 oclock saturday but when we got there she was at work. such a bummer. especially since it was snowing super hard on saturday so we walked the whole way. but elder villaneda and i were singing walking in a winter wonderland with our own twist to it. it was really funny and we were laughing pretty good.

 

sunday morning it was all super icy, but our new ward mission leader – brother terry – picked us up to go to church. hes pretty awesome. super organized and on top of things. hes a lawyer. very professional dude… haha but nice guy for sure. seems to be excited about missionary work too. so thats awesome.

 

oh on sunday they pretty much completed redid the ward as far as callings. we had high councilman and the entire stake presidency there and the eq presidency got completely rearranged, the hp leadership got completely redone. and we got a new counselor in the bishopric. and a bunch of other random stuff. haha

 

so we had ward council sunday morning, and were sitting in the chapel waiting for sacrament to start like 30 minutes before it started. there was a lady in the pews and i couldnt tell if she was a member or not. but we went over and talked to her. and she was a nonmemeber visiting cause her church was closed for the day. i explained how the meeting would work and a little about the church when our relief society president mustve been listening to the spirit because she came over introduced herself and and invited her to sit with them.

 

she stayed for sunday school and loved both of the meetings. that was awesome. she lives in 3rd ward area so we got her info for them and passed the info to them. theyre welcome for the investigator! hahah so crazy.

 

what are you guys doing for christmas? im not sure what exactly well be doing. all i know is that the calls are having us for dinner. so thatll be sweet. well figure out details eventually. ahah

 

love you guys so much. check out the churchs new chrstmas videos at christmas.mormon.org. theyre awesome.

 

hope things are awesome this week!

 

elder stark

November 30, 2105

so this week was really good. except for that tuesday and wednesday we didnt leave the apartment. monday elder villaneda woke up not feeling too hot. we had a missionary turkey bowl that day though, and he played football in high school so he couldnt resist playing. i was super excited to play. elder larose and i bought the same football gloves at ross. and i found those headbands i love at dicks a little bit ago. so we were decked out and ready to go. it was super intense and a ton of fun. it was flag but at the same time it was missionaries. you know how that can go. it actually wasnt bad excpet for one of the polys that played. i gave him a run for his money though and the best was when he was barreling at me full speed but i didnt see him. somehow he ricocheted off me and fell down hard and i stayed up. everyone was like how did that happen? i had the breath taken out of me pretty bad but that was all.

 

he took me out a couple times though. it was a good game and i did pretty good at outsmarting the other team and getting a few good catches. i did almost level a sister on accident because i spun and as i straightened back out i hadnt known she was there but i was able to not take her out luckily. haha

 

but after we were done elder villaneda said he felt like death. so we stayed in monday night, tuesday and wednesday. for thanksgiving we went to the churchills. that was awesome. we played some games and had their homegrown turkeys that were amazing. we were down thre from about 1 to like 8. haha they had some other people over too and were really excited to have me again.  it was nice to see them. and always a good time. haha

 

that morning though our ward had a turkey bowl. that was a good game too. it was snowing lightly. so i had my ski mask on and sweatshirt hood cinched down. people didnt know who i was at first. haha but i stayed warm. the only thing that wouldve helped was cleats. haha i strained my groin muscle. probably partially because it was like 10 degrees. but i couldnt run very well the last half of the game. but its feeling way better now, luckily.

 

friday we had our district meeting and we got a call asking if we could help them move today. we said sure but realized after we hung up that they werent in our ward and they thought they were calling the third ward elders. so we called and said we could still come, and even come with the third ward elders. but we didnt have time to go back to our apartment betweeen district meeting and them picking us up. so we jsut borrowd clothes from them. jeans, tennis shoes, and a coat. in like 10 degree weather while it was snowing. these are the days a mission is about! haha it was pretty cold and wed go inside to thaw out every so often but they really appreciated our help.

 

friday night we had a dinner appointment with the schlosser family. they have a 7 year old, and we set it up so we could teach her the lessons. they invited over their nonmember neighbors for dinner, and they stayed for the lesson. after, we chatted with them for awhile about stuff and hopefully we can set up another appointment with them because theyre great and seemed open to hearing more.

 

saturday we helped with another move for a little bit. but we had our own clothes. that was cool because it was a guy thats parents live in our ward but hes moved doiwn to fountain. so us, the third ward elders, and the fountain elders helped them load up some big things they needed moved down there. and then his wife made us burritos. that was yummy. and cool to be in fountain again. haha

 

we met with the less active kid, terrance jones. hes not really leass active buty officially theyre considered less active until they get their temple recommend again. so we had a lesson with him and got his dad to sit in, who hasnt been very supportive. he sat in and said hed be there for the next one too. the whole family came to church sunday because terrance got the teacher office of the priesthood and got his temple recommend. so that was pretty awesome. im hopeful for his family.

 

yestrerday we tried to vist our 2 investigators to no avail. tim had company over and elizabeth wasnt home so were gonna try again today.

 

the wedding sounds like it was awesome. the fish picture is great. sounds like it was a good time. sad i missed it but definitely doing the right thing. im so happy for nate and ashley and look forward to meeting her!

 

oh, so i thought of something yesterday. and i dont really want you guys to do much for me for christmas, id rather that money go to helping someone in the ward or something to that extent. our ward here is known for helping out others at christmas time and theyre supplyng a christmas for 3 families this years. so i thought itd be nice if you guys could use whatever youd spend on me to help another family back there.

 

but i do want you to send me some toffee 🙂 haha

 

i wore the wedding stuff to my district meeting and thought id take a pic for ya.

 

love you guys

 

Elder Stark

December 7, 2015

DSCF5023imageDSCF5012so mom i think youll be proud of me, i got my masters degree! okay maybe not quite an actual degree. so theres this place called master drive, in springs, and the mission decided to send 6 missionaries to take a class on slick condition driving. and elder villaneda and i, both got to take the class. we actually found out a couple weeks we would get to do it but i kept forgetting to tell you about it. but because we needed a car for it we got to go pick up a car on monday and keep it until thursday. that was pretty sweet. the class was on wednesday and they taught about some stuff in the classroom then we got to go out to their “skid plate” and practice braking, turning, and skid control/recovery. it was pretty sweet and they gave us all a “master drive masters degree” lol. since we all needed our own car for the course, and everyone else taking the course was the only one in their companionship, we picked up a second car on wednesday morning from some sisters that had a meeting, and just followed eachother there. a pretty fun course for sure.

oh and friday we had our zone training, that was pretty cool, talking about the things elder nash asked us to do. but elder villaneda started feeling sick again during the training. so we werent doing much of anything friday night. we had our christmas party, but he wasnt feeling well enough to go, which totally bummed me out for a minute. haha but the third ward elders drove us to get him some antibiotics prescribed by the mission doc. so we stopped by the christmas party to grab some food. so elder larsoe and i ran in to get some food so we had dinner. then around 10 oclock we got a phone call from president and i was like dude youre gonna train. so elder v is talking to president for awhile talking about being sick and stuff, then goes “yeah hes right here” and hands me the phone. president has asked me to be a trainer – from day 1 this time. lol. so im training! haha and probably gonna be staying here. but then again i thought id be staying in fountain too. so stay tuned to find out next week! haha
as for our investigators, Tim dropped us. said hes not interesting in the church, i think he was just kinda being nice by letting us come over. that was a bummer for sure. but we saw lisbeth twice this week. we went by earlier in the week and shared a quick thought cause she was busy, but she said to come on sunday. then sunday she said to come next saturday. so we shall see.
its awesome to hear about the reception and such, especially the cardboard cutout and its hiding abilities. hahaha sounds like fun! missing the family for sure. but christmas is coming quick. i cant beleive the choir concert is this week. thats so awesome that nana and grandpa are staying for it though. love ans miss them for sure.
oh and we did get to watch the christmas devotional, we watched it last night at a members house. that was really cool i thought. i love christmas and christmas time. all so great.
hope all is well there this week!
elder stark