Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Week 23: Tearful farewell in Fa'aripo, and the adventure begins in Bora Bora

This week was a crazy one! I knew that I would be transferring soon but I did not know exactly when or where I would go.  So I was a little stressed over that and the whole time I was thinking that I really didn't want to leave Fa'aripo! I mean sure, it's not the most beautiful part of Tahiti but it is still very nice and definitely my favorite part of Tahiti.  The people here are unbelievable, and I'm gonna miss them so much!

Monday we went to the store to get our PDay stuff and then went to the church in Papeete and played basketball with a bunch of other missionaries. Then we had FHE with Yanki's family and let me tell you that is always sooo much freakin' fun...haha! We shared a message about the forgiving of sins and it was really good! It was a great night!

Tuesday was kinda a downer (hahaha literally) because I fell off of my bike and destroyed my hand! Yeah, so they made me go to the doctor and it pretty much wasted my day.  It was kinda lame.

Wednesday: THIS WAS A SUPER SUCCESSFUL DAY! We decided to go on splits so we called Papi Tera and Yanki. I went with Yanki and Elder Elledge went with Papi. It was literally the most successful day that I have had so far! We had 16 lessons that day! I was really happy because my goal was to get better at contacting people and turning that into a little lesson, and I have really been working on that. I had this cool thought that day,  it is kinda hard and uncomfortable for me to just go up and talk to people without having any kind of connection, but yeah I just thought I really have nothing to lose and I will probably never see them again since I knew a transfer was coming.  So I just put it out there and wow! And then wouldn't you know it at the end of the day I got a call from the Assistant saying that I was going to transfer to Bora Bora, the Vaitape Sector!  I was really excited! 

Thursday: Elder Elledge and I were super tired because of all of the contacting the day before but it was ok, we did our best and worked hard through the day. We went to bed like an hour early that night!  Haha!

Friday: was another busy day full of contacting and lessons!

Saturday was sad because I had lessons with a lot of my favorite investigators and it was my last lesson with them.  I was kinda bummed, especially with Noel. In that lesson I shared my favorite scriptures like Alma 26:12 Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boastof my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever.

During that lesson he decided that he wanted to be baptized for real this time!  We set up a date for him on the 23rd of February and I really hope this happens for him! So yeah, I was happy with that it was hard to say goodbye to him! 

The Orbecks took all the Elders to dinner that night for steak and frittes (shouldn't they call them French fries here? This IS French Polynesia).

Sunday was my last day in Fa'aripo because my flight was scheduled for later that day.  At church I said goodbye to everyone and it was sad, especially with all the little kids.  I honestly cried saying goodbye to them! Then I made sure that everything was good in the house and then we left for the airport; I made sure I said goodbye to Aito (the dog haha) and even that was sad!  At the airport I checked in and all of my friends came with me! 

The Orbeck family and Sister Vatiani and her daughter Emelie were all there too. Ahhhh...it was so sad. And then I had to say goodbye to Elder Elledge and Duncan and Dalton...they were all amazing and I will miss them all so much.

Bro and Sis Orbeck seeing me off at the airport along with Vehia and Emilie

My Fa-aripo roomies saying get outta here: Elders Duncan, Dalton, Boyd, and Elledge

I arrived in Bora Bora and met my new companion. He is from New Caledonia and his name in Elder Puluiuvea. He has been here on his mission for 6 weeks so I am officially in charge of finishing his training! I hope I don't mess anything up! He is an awesome guy! I'm pretty happy because my old buddy from the MTC, Elder Sovereign, is here in Bora Bora so that is really awesome. Today we went on splits and Elder Sovereign and I rode our bikes around the entire island to show me all that is here.  It was pretty awesome! 

First Day in Bora Bora

This week was kind of sad because I felt like I left for my mission all over again! I left people that I love and now and it's like I just added more people on the list that I miss sooo much! But I have never regretted my decision to go on this mission. There are certainly hard times and many ups and downs, but when you put your head down and work, you remember that this is the most meaningful thing I can be doing right now!  It's crazy how that works!

Love you all and have a great week...I can't wait to meet the people of Bora Bora!

Elder Boyd 

Sisters and Elders from Utah in our last Zone Conference on Pape'ete

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Week 22: Dehydration take down, L's sincere prayer, and transfer week is coming

Hi everyone! 

So this week was pretty eventful!

Monday: After we emailed we went to Papeete for some bike stuff (and yeah that was expensive) and then after that we drove to the Mahina Beach and played beach soccer and chilled with everyone from our zone and the Arue zone..that was pretty fun!

Tuesday: Just a normal, good, busy day!

Wednesday: We had a Multi-Zone Conference and it was so good! I learned a lot about finding new people which is exactly what I want and need to do!

Thursday: We had a whole bunch of lessons and work to do it was just non-stop on the go haha! We did a bunch of service work too, so yeah it was crazy. I hadn't had anything to drink that day, so when I was in the doorway of my house and I was talking to Papi about our investigators, my back started cramping. I'm guessing it was because of the lack of water, and next thing I know I am on the ground and Papi is helping me up haha! So after that they called Sister Bize and I had to rest in the house the rest of the day...haha...lame!

Friday: We went to Arue and to have an interview with President Bize. I was really nervous at the beginning after passing out the day before...haha, but it was a really good interview and he showed me my numbers and how I've been doing so far; I kinda hate the numbers game; but I like how President looks at the numbers. He looks at them like they are people and not stats; he just gets what we are doing here. I was happy with my numbers and I'm even doing better than I thought was doing so yeah, that that was good.

Saturday was great...just a lot of lessons and stuff. There is this guy that I have been trying to get a lesson with for so long, but he always says "no". However, this time he came up to us and asked if he could do a lesson with us! So we planned it for the following day and that was cool, his name is Ludovic. 

Sunday: We had church and then ate at this "after church party" thing then we had the lesson with Ludovic.  During the lesson he just started bawling; I felt really bad for him because he is in a really tough situation.  We asked him to pray at the end of the lesson and it was the most sincere and powerful prayer I have ever heard...that spirit was so strong. He is a good kid and the gospel will help him turn his life around...I just know it.

Elders Boyd and Elledge being well fed (again) by the Orbeck family

Well, I feel my time is getting short in Fa'aripo and I'm really sad that I'll be leaving soon. I'm excited to see where I go next and what happens next. My time has gone so fast here, and I have developed a love for the people of this sector that I could have never expected...it will be so hard to say goodbye. 

Love you all...have an awesome week and I hope you guys are doing great!  

Stay strong and faithful!


Elder Boyd

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Week 21: Fafaru is smelly and you eat it with your fingers, but investigators are making strides

Iaorana! Maita'i oe? (Hello! How are you?) Another good week in Tahiti!

Monday: After we emailed we went back to the house and took care of Elder Dalton because he was so dang sick! (He had that Dengue fever...nasty!)  and then Elder Elledge and I went hiking with our zone and that was soo cool! I literally felt like Bear Grylls because it was a tiny trail on the side of a mountain cliff and it was all tropical and it was amazing! I am in such a beautiful part of the world! After that we went to FHE with Yanki and his family and that was awesome.

Study Time

Tuesday: We went on splits with Yanki and Papi...always a good experience. I went with Yanki and Elledge went with Papi and we got a bunch done that day. We taught 10 lessons! I also went contacting with Yanki because he thought of a person we could go to see and it was a man who is in a wheelchair and his name is Vaniva and he has one amputated leg and the other is like not good and I think it's kind of rotting or something (it's sad) but anyway I taught a little about the grace of Jesus Christ and we set up a time to come back so that was great...he seemed really interested.

Wednesday: Dalton was still pretty sick so I went and taught a lesson with his companion,  Elder Duncan, in Papenoo and during the lesson I got this wicked headache and I thought oh geez, I'm getting the "Dalton fever"  and I was like shoot! By the time we got back to the house I was getting worse so the rest of the day I stayed and slept and Dalton and I looked gross. So Elledge and Duncan went out and taught lessons! I was angry I was sick. But don't worry, whatever it was I was feeling a little better by the next day...I wasn't down for long!

Thursday: I was still a little sick but I still went out to teach and that was a good day.  I was a little tired but glad I was out!

Gun fight in the rough streets of Fa'aripo

Video Link: https://vimeo.com/151524167

Friday: We had zone meeting (like always, ha) and that was good. Then after that we taught Herenui and Heipua. Elledge and I have developed a pretty great teaching plan and teaching strategy for them (we work really well together) but anyway our lessons are going so great with them and I see great things in their future! It makes me happy...they go in and out of staying on the path but I just know they can do it!

Saturday: It was great as well...just a normal day of contacting and teaching. 

Sunday: After church we went and ate ma'a Tahiti with Tamatoa and some other people. Ma'a Tahiti is like REAL Tahitian food. It's like fish and all this weird stuff! They cook it down in a fire like all day...it's crazy! I thought it would be gross at first but then I got used to it and thought heck this is sooo good! Then I had Marquesan Fafaru (this stuff is fish that is marinated in fermented seawater or something for three days...boy does this stuff smell!) I just kept eating and I'm really not sure what everything was...hahaha! It's considered rude if you eat ma'a Tahiti with a fork...they eat it straight with their hands...so there I was eating crazy good Tahitian food with no manners...it was awesome! 

So the best experience this week...you know how I had been getting frustrated with Herenui because he just would not progress? He would tell us that he couldn't stop smoking; he wasn't reading the Book of Mormon or praying and we tried everything to keep him trying. With some investigators when they just don't progress after a long time and you have done everything you can think of; it's better to tell them you can't teach them consistently anymore and just stop the lessons for a bit...it's in their hands at some point.  So when we went over there this week I was ready to go over the lesson plan explaining why we can't teach him and before I said all that stuff I asked him one more time; "Herenui have you prayed...yes; have you read....a little bit, how's it going with the Word of Wisdom...... good, I am progressing." Holy smokes!  

I hadn't heard answers like that from him in weeks! So I was shocked and  we kept on teaching him! I know now that God did not want me to let that kid go, and I am so glad I didn't start in on the lesson that I had planned to give, because right now his attitude has totally changed! Herenui and Heipua are progressing and I am so happy for them!

Pray for my investigators! Have a great week and love you all!

Elder Boyd

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Week 20: New Companion: Elder Elledge, Papi Tera is Zac Hales, and tracting out the ex-Bishop

Bonjour la famille! 

So I'm writing this email while I'm listening to Kennedi's "tonsils" video haha!  I'm dying right now! She was hysterical coming out of the surgery!  Hahaha! Elder Elledge and I are dying right now!  Haha!

OK...so this week was kinda long but still really good..."toujours fatigue mais ne jamais fiu"...always tired but never sick of it! :)

Monday we woke up and I ran and exercised and stuff and then we went to the mission home and I got to talk to President Bize for a little bit before we went to exchange companions...it was great to visit!  We went to the temple and then we waited for Elder Dalton's new companion, Elder Duncan, and then we drove back (just the three of us because I had to wait for my companion to get here from Takaroa..he came on Thursday) and then I went to FHE with Dalton and Duncan in Papenoo.

Tuesday was good!  We scheduled Papi to get here at 10:30 and as soon as he got here he and I just hit the pavement/jungle/beautiful scenery and went nuts! We visited everyone we could think of and we did absolutely everything that we could to share messages!  We ended up sharing like 5 that day which wasn't too bad.  I love Papitera, that guy is so awesome; I just realized last week that he is just like an older version of Zac Hales; he is just short and funny and has so much energy and he just loves to serve God!

Wednesday our investigator Imiura called and she is sick in the hospital. Papi went to the hospital to give her a blessing; so Dalton asked me to come work in his sector until Papi got back; so I went with Duncan and Dalton and we picked up Charles from Papenoo.  Charles and I started our contacting and then I thought of something I wanted to try so I talked to Charles and told him I thought we should pray specifically for guidance of where we needed to be right at that very minute. So we did that and we immediately thought to go to this green house.  We shared a little thought with a 30 year old girl and she wanted to listen. It was awesome. After that we prayed and thanked God for leading us to her and we found 2 more people in one hour so we shared 3 messages right after our prayer!  It was fantastic! After that I got back with Papi and we headed right out again. We went to see Herenui and Heipua but Heipua was the only one home.  She just lost her unborn baby.  Heipua was five months pregnant and then she had a miscarriage; so this made me sad; but when I was talking to her she was smiling and had a good attitude.  I can tell that she is trying really hard. I've been doing a lot of praying for her; it makes me so sad, I want the two of them to pull everything together and get baptized.  They are such good people.

Elders Elledge and Boyd enjoying a welcome dinner and Choosing the SpRITE

Thursday we went to pick up my new companion, Elder Elledge (he is from Boise, Idaho), and he was all decked out in leis and stuff...haha...that's what happens when you leave another island that you have been serving on for a while. But anyway, we picked him up and I showed him around the sector so he could meet all the great members and stuff.  We did that all day on Friday too...we have a lot of great members obviously!!

Saturday we got right back to work and taught lessons and stuff.  I had heard a couple weeks back that there was this house at the very top of the mountain that we had never seen or been to. We had some time so I found the road to go to the house and we hiked for a while to go see it.  We finally got there and it was a crazy nice house! It turns out that there was a family up there and we talked with the man (Daniel) and we were sharing stuff about the gospel and he already new the exact verses that we were going to share.  Then he told us that he was inactive and that he had held big callings in the church (but he wouldn't tell us his callings) he was a little reserved but very nice. Later that night we asked the Bishop if he knew him and we said his name and he was like wowee! (People act like he is a legend or something...haha it's interesting).  I guess he was a Bishop at one time..so I guess that makes him an inactive Bishop...so we are just gonna keep visiting him and try to help him back!

Sunday Elder Dalton got crazy sick and so after church we just stayed in the house and took care of him. I guess he's got the Dengue fever...it doesn't look fun. Dang You, Fever!

Elder Elledge and I are going to get along great...we are off and working already and excited about the work! 

The canyon in the sector/area

Love you all, I'm bummed that I missed seeing "crazy tonsil Kennedi" in full force, but I love being a missionary out here!  

Until next week...

Elder Boyd