Sunday, February 15, 2015

2/15/2015 Hello from the isles of the sea!

This has been another great week. I am loving my time here in Abaiang with Elder Miller. We work very hard and feel so fulfilled at the end of every day. 
This is our basic schedule. Wake up at 6:30, we've got three alarms so I usually get up pretty close to then. Then we have two jobs that we rotate randomly who does. One person walks 50yd to the well and draws a bucket of water for washing dishes (and flushing the toilet). The well is 6-9ft deep and we use a large corned beef can on a string to fill our bucket. The other job is to climb the rain tank for our shower and drinking water. It is about 6 feet tall, so we just jump and scramble up. It rains a bunch so it is easy to scoop out water with a small can. We usually finish the dishes shortly after 7 if we've cooked anything, and go out to get food if we forgot to the night before. Usually we eat weetbix (think shredded wheat but bigger and not frosted) with Milo (unsweetened hot chocolate without the hot) or peanut butter and jam on bread or crackers. 
Then I try to be showering by 7:30. I go into an american looking shower with a bucket of water and a cup and pour the water myself. It is sorta inconvenient, but at the same time really cool. You can control the area, speed, intensity, everything (and it is literally really cool, the water gets 'refrigerated' over night). It is really refreshing especially since I usually listen to a conference talk as I do it. Then at almost exactly 8 I am studying. I have just started a more intense study of the Kiribati Book of Mormon (Ana Boki Moomon). I understand all of the verses, but I have a notebook for all of the words that I don't know. This has replaced my english BoM study, but my language is progressing lots. I do that until almost exactly 8:30 then switch to studying concepts for the lessons, writing lessons, memorizing scriptures, or anything else that will help me in my day.
 At 9 we start Companion study where we read in the Missionary Handbook, run over our plan for each investigator, talk about our personal study, study the scriptures, role play, etc. Then is Language study where we read Ana Boki Moomon together, practice language things, run through lessons in Kiribati, or do what ever else which will help us the most. We try to be out of the house and working by 11. Then everyday is different after that. P-days (today) are all around different, and the only constant thing is the wash. We get well water, powdered soap, and bleach and scrub for a few hours. It's a great time...
Tiiwini is getting baptized this week! He is the most solid person I have ever seen. A lot of people just passively accept lessons and usually get baptized afterwards. But Tiiwini and a few other investigators that we have right now are actively coming to the truth. It is so wonderful to see and be involved with. He gave up most of the things that aren't allowed in the Word of Wisdom before we taught him about it. He struggled for a bit with tea and smoking. He said that once he knew it was against a commandment, tea was easy but smoking shouldn't be a problem because all of the bad stuff just gets breathed away (he was joking). The next week we asked him and asked if there was anything we could do to help (we were going to give him a calendar). He said that there was no problem and that he gave all of his things for smoking to 'that lady over there.' I thought it was funny how casually he made giving up this 40 year addiction sound. In the baptismal interview one of the questions asks if you feel that you are ready to make a covenant and be baptized. He said, "I am so ready" and my companion who was conducting the interview just had to agree. He is so excited to be baptized this Thursday.
This week we had one baptism, another girl, Maria, that was just so ready and is now converting the rest of her family. The only problem with this baptism is that it was on Kiribati time, which means an hour late. By that time everyone was ready,  the tide went out so she was dunked in knee deep water. She was very surprised, but every one laughed about it afterwards. The spirit was still very strong and the ward is a big fan of her so was very supportive. 
Basically the work is progressing and is a lot of fun. We try our best and even though we make more mistakes that we would prefer the Lord helps us and blesses us. Life is great and beautiful in the small forgotten isles of the sea!
Elder Morley

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