Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Week 41: Say nope to dope and Taia's baptism

It was a crazy week guys!

Monday after emailing we went to this store called "Saltwater Family". It's a store that is only here, it's crazy popular and stuff, so I went and ordered a hat that l'll go and pick up later today! After that we went and chilled at Boule's house and played ping pong and talked about the NBA playoffs, he is giving me updates on the playoffs!

On Tuesday I had a split with Elder Brunet in my sector, it was cool. We had a ton of lessons. We had a lesson with Sylvain, a French guy from Toulouse who moved here to marry Sister Commings! He is taking the lessons, but the only problem with him is he won't pray...that is super hard for him for some reason, but he will get there. We had a good lesson with him, you could tell that he felt the spirit! It was awesome! 

After the split Elder Brunet, Vairea Commings, and I were evaluating the split; talking about our strengths and weaknesses, and this guy came over to just say hi because he knows Sister Commings. When he said "hi" to us, we could  totally tell that he was higher than Wiz Khalifa on a Tuesday night, and we were like, "oh boy." So he was just chillin' there listening to our conversation, and when it was my turn to talk I mentioned some of Sister Comming's strengths, and then the guy was like, "Hey, do you even understand French?" 

For those who know me, you can probably guess that I saw my chance to mess with him a little! I said, "No... I can't understand or speak a word of French!" (I'm not very proud of it but it was still pretty funny!) So, then the guy said "Then don't speak French if you don't know how to speak French." I said "Ok, I'm sorry I won't speak French since I don't know how to speak French." (by the way, this entire conversation WAS IN FRENCH... haha)! So then the guy left (confused) and Elder Brunet and I were laughing for like 10 minutes, haha! Kids, stay away from drugs!

On Thursday, Averii, the 8 year old girl who wants to be baptized, told us that her grandpa said that if she gets baptized then she will be kicked out of their house! So we will need to figure something out with her! Poor kid...it's so hard when that happens. A child shouldn't ever have to face a scenario like that.  

On Saturday we had lessons early in the morning and then we had our baptism! His name is Taia, and he is this 50 year old guy that is so funny! He was another referral from the Atiu family. We taught him and he gained a testimony so fast, and literally left everything behind to follow Christ! In his testimony after the baptism he said, "je vais servir le seigneur toute ma vie!" (I will serve the Lord for the rest of my life!) He is awesome! 

Missions are just so cool! Having the chance to watch people completely change is honestly a once in a lifetime opportunity. This mission is something so precious to me. I could have never understood that before, but now I truly understand. I encourage everyone to go on a mission! We all have the power to change a life, and in that process, your life will be changed as well. 

This week we really started working hard on learning Tahitian. It's starting to come along. While I like French, Tahitian is the language I was called to teach in and it's the language I want to get really fluent in! I'm learning some cool phrases like, "God loves us.", and I can say a simple prayer in Tahitian! I also learned phrases that I can yell at my kids someday when I'm mad at them because it sounds super scary in Tahitian! Haha!

I also really studied King Benjamin this week...man, Mosiah 2-5 is a crazy good sermon, I love really studying that stuff!

Have a good week everyone! Off to work!

Elder Boyd

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Week 40: Teaching, testifying, and practice for Heiva

Happy Monday! How is everyone doing?  Here is my update from last week:

Monday was a pretty fun day! We went to a motu with the Atiu family...'twas dope!! It was beautiful out there as usual. I got super............"tan"! Haha! (If my forearms and the 12 inches between my shorts and the top of my socks can count as being tan)! 

Tuesday we went to work, heading out on our bikes and just taught a bunch of lessons; it was a pretty busy day which is a normal day haha! We had a lesson with Heitapu who is going to get married and baptized on the 23rd of June! So happy about that! Then we had a lesson with my homie, Inasio. I always love talking to that guy.  Then we had soiree milo which basically means family night with hot chocolate and tons of nutella with Taurahiti and his family.  They introduced us to a girl named Georgie and she is 22 years old and is the nanny for their kids. We had a good family night with them and Georgie was super interested when we started talking to her, but she lives in the other sector so we passed her over to Elders Ruff and Lewis.

On Wednesday we got to work and had more lessons to do.  We had another lesson with Taurahiti and it was great like always, but Taurahiti was flipping because he lost his phone, so he was trying to find it and was a little distracted! We fixed a day to go and see him again on Friday!

Thursday was awesome. We just had a load of lessons, like always, but at the end of the day we had a lesson with Hearii and his girlfriend and it was such an uplifting lesson! We talked about the Sabbath Day and then about baptism and marriage. They are going to set a date this week...it's exciting!

Friday was a good day as well, we had our meeting in the morning with the district. We discussed how to get our district more unified, because the four of us in the house are super tight and it is really great to share ideas and stuff, but the other two haven't really come to chill with us like we used to when Sovereign was here. It is good to get together on P-day Mondays to recharge for the week. So yeah, it was a good meeting! 

After we had some more lessons and then we went and ate with Taurahiti and he told us that Georgie (the nanny) stole his phone on Wednesday! I thought that that was so funny! I guess the other Elders will have to start their lessons with "Thou shalt not steal"! Ha, we just laughed about it! But truly she is now taking the lessons with the missionaries and stuff so she will be on her way. 

After that a member invited us to watch a practice for the "Heiva". The Heiva is a big event that goes on for the whole month of July and it's basically Tahitian dancing and awesome competitions for all that stuff. I'm pumped for that...these people know how to throw a party! We watched some of the practice and it's sooo cool! I saw Mateata (who got baptised in December and we teach her right now) and she is super good! Then I saw my homie Tainui dance, and he is amazing as well! It's so cool because they just have these massive drums and a choir and tons of dancers and it looks great. It's like a "Haka" sort of but different and honestly I think it's cooler!

Sunday was a good day.  I gave a talk in church and it was pretty darned good!

I love the verse in D&C 6:36: "Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not".  I love it because it's a verse so simple, but complete. That's what I love about this gospel, it is simple and complete.  When we talk with the Jehovah's witnesses here on Bora it is strange because they study the gospel and treat it with such complexity, and they just don't get it! We are simple in our teachings, and we get it! The gospel is simple, it is easy to apply, and it is a representation of the Lord's love for us.

Goodbye until next time...

Elder Boyd

Monday, May 16, 2016

Week 39: Elder Rybin joins Elder Boyd in Bora

Sup les gars? (Sup guys?)

Well you know me... like every week, this one was also great! Here are a few of the highlights.

We woke up super early on Wednesday and got on the boat to say goodbye to Elder Puluiuveia. We worked really hard together and he was a great companion. We have had a ton of success together, and I am really going to miss him.

Elders Boyd and Pulu playing a song at a baptism

But, then I picked up my new companion, Elder Rybin, from American Fork, UT and he is super awesome! He is actually super good friends with our cousin, Jason Nelson, and he has been in the mission for about 6 months. He's really funny too, so I'm quite excited about the next few months! We returned from the boat docks and we headed right out for more lessons.

On Thursday, we, along with Sister Commings, ward misionary, headed out to teach and it was just a normal busy awesome day. We had to work in the two sectors, Vaitape and Fa'anui, because Elder Ivie's companion still hadn't shown up, so it was a super busy day. Then afterward, we ate with some kind-hearted members and went home. I passed out on the couch for the night, I was so tired ...  t'was great!

Friday we went out and worked a long hard day again, and the best thing happened: Sister Moevai, who lives right next to us, asked me to schedule an interview with the bishop so she can start becoming active in the church again!! Wooooo!! It made me so happy to hear that and I wondered if maybe we were in some way a good influence on her living so close to her. 

Later that day we were pedaling on the street and the Jehovah's Witness man that I have come to know called us over to talk to us (his name is Emmett) and he said, "Elder Boyd, I did some research on your Prophet Joseph Smith and did you know that he had 40 wives and they were all minors?" 

I was like oh geeeezzzz here we go again!! But before I could say anything, Elder Ivie said something I can't even put in print here. But, had you heard it, those who know me can probably guess what happened next. Yes I BURST out laughing ... and, yes, I was the only one laughing and it was kinda embarrassing haha. I just thought that out of all the ways you can respond to that question, he says THAT, haha. I think I laughed most of the rest of the day.

Saturday after working all day, we had a lesson planned with Steve. That man is so good, BUT he didn't show up to the lesson at the church, and he didn't answer his phone, so we went to his house on the other side of the island and found him just chilling there. He explained to me that he had a pretty bad week and he just didn't have the desire to do the lesson, so we just talked to him awhile and discussed how we all have our trials and how we need to continue progressing forward even when life gets difficult and tiring.

Sunday, church was great, then we went to pick up Elder Ivie's new companion, and he is a really great guy as well.  His name is Elder Brunet (yet he's blonde) and he comes from the Alps mountains, so he likes all the stuff I like: skiing and snowboarding, biking, motocross and stuff like that. He's funny too!

Today, we went out to the motu with the Atiu family like always. I love doing that. It's always a great change of pace and beautiful scenery of paradise.

This week I read and marked a verse that was cool to me. It's D&C 25:10 "And verily I say unto thee that thou shalt lay aside the things of this world, and seek for the things of a better." Even as a missionary there are still things that I can let go of. There are always things that we can let go, like a bad attitude or maybe a bad eating habit ya know, and switch that with something better, and that is how we PROGRESS!!

Shout out to my Lone Peak Knights baseball brothers. I'm "representing" out here with my Knights Baseball P-Day shirt and wishing you Good luck in the State Playoffs this week! Last year's Seniors are with you in spirit!

Okay, peace, out!!

Elder Connor Boyd

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Week 38: Mother's Day Call Home and More

Hi Fam!

It was another great mission week on Bora Bora! It was so awesome to talk to everyone on Saturday night and I really told you most of what there was to say from this week, but here is just a quick list of a few good things I think I missed:

Monday night through Thursday we just really scheduled lesson after lesson after lesson...we are staying busy almost all of the time and it feels awesome to be teaching such good people. I gave my hat to Inasio (he loves hats) so he was super pumped. Yes Mom, I gave away another hat...I'm not really sure why the guys over here love my hats so much, but they do!

On Friday we had a lot of lessons to do and then we went to visit a guy that we have been trying to catch for like 12 weeks. He has just never been there (or he ignored us hahaha), but we just knew we needed to connect with him.  We caught him right as he was walking to his car haha...it was funny! He didn't seem very happy to see us haha, but we just started talking about random stuff, like about his kids, work, his hobbies and stuff  like that. Then he asked us what we do on our missions each day... he was actually super interested in us and why we are here and how old we are and stuff. So now we have a lesson with him this coming week and I'm super pumped!!

After that we had a lesson with Tehea, who is a nut, and I'll tell you why!! She knows it's time to be baptized and that she can be baptized by her husband. We have tried to set up a date for her but she still wants us to give her time.  It has been about one month since we said we would give her some space but time is up! So yeah, she admitted to us that she was scared of her family's possible negative reaction to her baptism. One of my best friends would always tell me to "suck it up" when I was dragging my feet or worried about something, and I really wanted to say that to her because I know she is ready but I can't..haha! We just explained that if she does her part for the Lord, He will do His part and fill in the rest for her!! After that she calmed down a bit and I believe we will be able to set her baptism date really soon!

Saturday was a busy day with lessons, and then we Skyped the family, twas dope!  Haha! Loved seeing everyone!!

Here's a short Video Recap of some of the highlights of the call: 

On Sunday, Elder Escoffre (Mr. Bean) left early in the morning to head home to France.  It was weird to see him go because I will probably never see him again. It's kinda sad when you think about it, but it's the mission...missionaries get really good at saying goodbyes because we do it all of the time! It was such a pleasure to get to know Mr. Bean!! It's always cool to watch a missionary leave to go home after two years of great service, I bet it's a weird feeling!

The Assistants called this weekend and informed us that my companion, Elder Puluiuveia, is leaving and I'm getting a new companion. His name is Elder Rybin. He is American and is fairly new.  I'm excited to get working with this new missionary, continue his training and show him the ropes ... haha! 

Ok...love you all...gotta go...there's work to do!

Elder Connor Boyd

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Week 37: Sunsets, Sickness, and So-long Mr. Bean

Hi guys! Sorry it's so late today...I'll write super quick!

Visitors vacationing here from Highland, UT

On Monday we did a little shopping and then we watched the most amazing sunset I have ever seen in my life! 

Package from home for the opening day of Baseball season ... not sure why, but it was a great package!

Tuesday we had a bunch of lessons, and it was a super successful day. We ended up getting like 8 lessons done! I was really tired, but it was a good tired! The next day we  had our lesson with Sylvain (one of the guys we baptized last week) and we learned that when he came home from church after he was confirmed on Sunday, his wife was waiting for him in the house... she totally came back! Oh we were so happy...I had been so worried about him all week. She insists that she still doesn't want any part of the church...but we just smiled at her and thought....one day!! Hehehe! Thursday we were busy with more lessons and teaching...we are progressing with more investigators all of the time.  It is so great to be teaching these people.

Friday started off with district meeting and after district meeting I was starting to feel a little sick, like hot (we always feel hot and sweaty but this was a new level of hot and sweaty)...but we had a bunch of lessons planned so we got our lessons done and then I went straight to bed when I got home. I woke up the next morning super sick.  So basically Saturday was a bust for me.  I stayed at the house all day and slept... it was really lame.  Sister Orbeck from my first area called to talk to me and when she found out from the other Elders that I was sick and sleeping she gave them a long list of everything that she wanted them to do for me. And she kept calling back to make sure that they were doing everything on her list! Hahaha!  She is like my little Tahitian mom! It felt like a long day since I couldn't really do much.  I hate not being on the go all the time.

I was still pretty sick on Sunday so I couldn't go to church. It was weird. So we did splits all day again and I slept as much as I could. That night I felt good enough to go to a family night thing at Sister Cumming's house, it was good... then we went home and I fell asleep on the couch!

I felt much better today finally. The reason I am writing so late is because it was Mr. Bean's last P-day ever!! I can't believe he is leaving! So a member took us shark feeding and ray feeding and we went to a motu and ate food and chilled there for a little bit. It was a good day but I got fried haha! So I went from a fever to a sunburn...great!  It was pretty awesome because an old missionary who served here came and chilled with us too. His name is Elder Ball and he finished his mission about a year ago...it seems like the time just goes so fast!

I'm so glad to be serving a mission. I realize exactly why God needs so many young men and young women to go on missions... this is such a short time period that will change our lives for eternity and the lives of all that we teach for eternity.  It is worth every minute.

Love you all

Elder Boyd