Monday, March 27, 2017

Marriage Master

Man, I feel like I'm less of a missionary and more of a counselor. Every day we teach several lessons where we don't really actually teach. We just listen to people tell us about there problems. That's the problem with being a missionary. Everyone thinks that because you have a plaque you're some magical being that can solve any problem that is thrown at them. We're dealing with some pretty crazy stuff, and as you might guess from the title, a lot of this crazy stuff is marriage. We have about fifteen investigators that have a desire to be baptised or are at least really potential, and eleven of those are blocked because of marriage problems. So that's my life right now. 

It's killing me. Hamuera and Sefina are so close for baptism and marriage, but they won't pick a date. I talked last week about how they got the number fifteen. Well, this week they got another vision where they saw a big piece of paper and someone rwriting on it. A...O...U...T. Noooooo! They want to get baptised August 15th. Well, we talked some more, and they think they want to do it sooner, but they still haven't chosen a date. So far Hamuera has fasted a second time, and Sefina fasted too. And she's stopped smoking now, too. They are so spiritual and they rely on the Lord for everything. It's so cool to see that. I know that they will be powerful members.

We've been kind of teaching this guy whose wife is a member. He's never taken seriously the lessons and we don't even do them very often. We did this lesson and shared Alma 34:33. That kind of scared him, so I gave him Alma 5:38, 39 to go with it. He was really freaked out, and as a result he started reading the LdM. We've started dong somewhat more regular visits and he's actually progressing now. I guess some people need different forms of motivation. I certainly don't want to be a son of the devil.

There was an inactive that we visited this week. It's been a while since we last came and we just talked and it ended with her asking us to bless her house. So we invited her nonmember copain to come over. She was hesitant to invite him because he usually wants nothing to do with our church but he was really nice and loved that we wanted to bless there house. I did the blessing, That was the first time that I ever blessed a house. You would think it would be easy, but it was definitely a weird experience. At the end, her copain asked when we would come back. Sweet! So we'll start teaching them together.

There are two little kids about to turn nine who have baptisms fixed for the twentieth. It's a long story but we haven't even taught them, but a member has been teaching them and set up their baptsim. That's for the 20th of April, so that'll be exciting. Those kids are pretty cute!

We taught the person that said why not to baptism. This time it was with his copine. They want to get baptised, but after she gives birth. In august. We're trying to push for earlier with them too. But at least they have the desire.

So, a lot of stuff is happening. We have a lot of people that are progressing, we just need to help them take that leap of faith and get on the path that leads to Eternal Life. I'm pretty excited. Oh, and by the way, I'm not taking credit for being the Marriage Master. It's definitely God who is softening the hearts of these people and helping them realise that the family is sacred and the man and woman have very important roles. Marriage is ordained of God. I was just an instrument, a messager proclaiming God's message. I was actually really impressed with some of this counsel that I've given people. I have no experience with this stuff, yet somehow I manage to help people with their complicated problems. It's definitely not thanks to me that these people are changing. That's right, God's a Marriage Master. 

Orometua Lewis

Monday, March 20, 2017


Yeah, the mission's pretty cool. Here are a couple experiences:

We finally got a lesson in with this guy that we found two months ago, but the lessons just keep getting cancelled. It's ridiculous. So we got the second lesson in on tuesday. We were discussing the church and talking about his cousin who is a bishop here in Faaa and how he and his family are happy. 

Elder Fareata: Tu sais, si tu veux, tu peux te faire baptiser mormon.

Ami: Je peux me faire baptiser deux fois?

Elder Fareata: Oui.

Ami: Okay. Pourquoi pas? Oui, je pense que je veux que ma fille soit dans votre église. Et il faudra que ma femme nous suive aussi. 

Yeah, why not? haha. It was a little weird and we didn't end up fixing a date, we're not entirely sure if it will work out or anything, but we'll keep teaching and see if he really wants to get baptised. 

The couple that our bishop found are really progressing! We had a lesson with them, and taught the plan of Salvation. The mother of Ari'i* (the investigator) just passed away, and that lesson really helped him to get some relief. At the end of the lesson, they just talked about how they felt peace and relief. And Elder Fareata engaged him for the baptism. So far, we've engaged him every lesson, and then afterwards he talks to bishop, who says immediately: Et le baptême? C'est quand?

So Elder Fareata engaged him and as usual he said that he wants to think about it after the marriage. And After the lesson, bishop talked to him, and posed the same question: C'est quand le baptême? Le 12? And Ari'i said that we had just discussed that and that he wasn't sure. Then bishop said: Et le 15? Ari'iresponded: Okay, je suis prêt. Wow. Little did we know that all we needed to do was fix the date for AFTER the marriage and not the same day as the marriage as we've been doing. So Ari'i and Kalea* are getting married the 12 and Ari'i is getting baptised the 15. It's really cool to see how different principles of the gospel touch different people in different ways. For Ari'i it was the fact that he would be with his mother again. That hope lead him to building faith and acting on his faith so he could get those blessings. 

Hamuera and Sefina are doing really well. They always surprise me with the amount of doctrine that they know. We started teaching them the improtance of commandments and on friday we taught them the Word of Wisdom. Hamuera has already been prepared. It's been two months that he's stopped drinking, and seven since he's stopped smoking and drinking coffee. He's well off. It's was a little harder for Sefina. She doesn't even know how many cigarettes she smokes a day-thirty or forty, and she drinks coffee. So we engaged her to stop drinking coffee that day, and to stop smoking cigarettes by the next week, at our next lesson with them. She agreed. Oh, and Hamuera started a fast to help him with his repentance process and to help Sefina to stop smoking. We didn't even teach them how to fast!

The next day we had a Soirée Familiale as a missionary activity and they came. We asked them how they were progressing and Sefina told us that she had gone down to three cigarettes already. They had also been praying to know what date was good for their marriage and baptism and while pondering, Hamuera had a little vision where the number fifteen popped into his head. So they're okay with that being the date, but they don't know which month yet (it's going to be april). So they are going to keep praying until they get more revelation. We should know by Saturday. There are just so many little miracles happening with this couple. I'm looking back a few weeks ago when Hamuera was on standby saying that he wouldn't get baptised any time soon. They've definitely felt the sprit testify to them that this is the truth and that this is the path that they should take in their lives. So cool!

I just thought I would share a couple really cool experiences this week. We did so much but I can't write it all. My testimony definitely srengthens each week. Honestly, there is no doubt that the restored gospel of Jesus Christ will change a person's life for the better. 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Adventures With Elder Lewis (part two)

This week was a little less crazy than last week, what a blessing!

Last monday we had a soirée familiale at our DMP's house. He invited his nonmember family and several people from the quartier, so there were about twenty amis there. It was really good, and it touched the hearts of a few of our amis. It was about Jesus being le chemin, la vérité et la vie. Let me just take a minute and testify of the reality of Jesus Christ's Atonement. It is real. Jesus suffered so much, and he did it because he loves us. There is no other name by which we can be saved. He really is the intermediator for us. I'm so grateful for His sacrifice for each one of us.

Right before or lesson with Guy, Paea, and La'ei, Guy called us and cancelled because they're going on a family reunion in Tautira for the week. He said that he would call us when he gets back. Uh-oh. Well, they missed out on a lot of stuff they had to do, and it looks like they won't be making their objective. They still haven't called back, I'm hoping they'll be back by tomorrow.

Also, it's been hard to contact Jules. It's not looking good for his date either. Satan's trying really hard to fight against us right now. But we're not going to give in, we're going to keep fighting him until he loses.
Also this week, bishop has been working on a couple for years and years. She is a member and he is catholique. They've decided to follow our missionary lessons and they are getting married the 12 of April. Exciting! I love seeing people make these choices that will bring them closer to each other and, overall, God. If only everyone had the desire to keep all of God's commandments.

Oh, here's a cool little story. Back right before Elder Fawson left, we found this guy who asked us for the lessons. His name is David*. He asked a lot of questions, he had us ask him a lot of questions, and it was really good. We found him again this week and mentioned that we had taught Paul (back from one of my first few weeks here in Tavararo). Our next lesson he brought Paul along and we taught them together. It's going good now, they're both progressing. They also made us uru puaatoro, one of my favorite tahitian foods. Amazing. So many blessings! haha

We taught Hemuera and Sefina again and got Sefina to pray for the first time. At the end, Hemuera had tears in his eyes and said " I was waiting for only that." Apparently he had been trying to get his copine to pray, but she never would. They are definiltely progressing. And they came to the chapelle for the first time this sunday. So cool!

One last experience for the week:

We've been in a certain quartier a lot this week, trying to find old references and other people. One day we were talking to someone and this nine year old kid on a bike came up to us and just kind of smiled, he didn't say anything. So we talked a bit, and the next day we were there again, and he found us again, and we talked. So I asked if we could come talk to his family, and he led us to his house and got his dad to come out. At first he seemed a little angry, like he didn't want to talk to us, but suddenly opened up and we talked for a long time. At one point he picked up the Plan of Salvation brochure that we had given him and said "We need this in our family again". I don't know how all of that happened, but I'm grateful to the Lord for helping us find and teach this little family.

Okay, that's it for this week. Bonne semaine!

Elder Lewis

Monday, March 6, 2017

Adventures With Elder Lewis

Wow, the transfers are crazy. They're messing things up a bit. Elder Fawson left last sunday after church and I was left in a trio for the rest of the day with some other elders. We had mexican food for dinner with them, so good! It's been way too long that I haven't had mexican food. Anyway, On tuesday we had three elders come stay with us waiting for their planes, so they went with me that day. That's the problem with living right next to the airport. The thing is, we could do splits and go off two by two, but I was the only one to know that secteur, so we were basically a group of four elders walking around everywhere (we had no bikes either). We taught Sebastien, Paea, and La'ei*. It was a really good lesson and we fixed a goal for their baptism. They still have a lot to do before they get there, but we're hoping it will all work out.

On Tuesday the other three elders left and Elder Frazer came from Bora waiting for his plane for Makemo so he was my companion for the rest of the week. That was really cool. We got hold of Jules and had a really good lesson on the example of Jesus Christ and at the end he was in tears and we were able to fix a date for the 25th. He's almost ready.

We sarted the lessons with the brother of some recent converts and his copine-Hamuera* and Sefina*. Hamuera had already followed the lessons a little, but Sefina didn't want him to take them anymore so he stopped. Now she is interested, and they both take the lessons together. We just answered all the questions that they had. We talked about a lot of things, but especially the temple and the gospel of Jesus Christ. Hamuera says he knows the church is true, but doesn't want to engage himself just yet. They are really spiritual, actually, and I think that pretty soon they will be ready. We had a faatamaaraa with the family afterwards so we stayed there from about four until nine. Wow!

Elder Frazer left for Makemo Sunday morning so now I'm with Elder Madsen for a week who just came from Takaroa. Fun stuff!

It's been a really good week, we've seen lots of blessings. It's been a little hard with the transfers, but we're hastening the work, and that's all that matters.

Elder Lewis