Sunday, March 29, 2015


Hey Everybody!
How's life up north? It has been really rainy here. Nothing like a cyclone, but still wet. The rain and our constant bike problems has made the work hard, but it is still going strong. This week I ate some Mantis Shrimp, which was tastey. Kinda like lobster, but sweeter and easier to get at the meat. Right now Elder Davis and I are a bit swamped with work. We have 4 areas that all need our help and work, but only 6 days to do it all in. Plus travel time is hard to be able to go everywhere and meet with all of our people. It is a really cool situation. We have so much to do that it can't all get done, it is hard, but we are so blessed here. 
Right now Arenteiti and Tirawa are really close to being ready for baptism. Both of them started out really strong and then started to falter for a while. But after much prayer and effort we can see that they are almost ready. I have noticed something interesting with Arenteiti. I have heard that once people hear the gospel their countenance changes. I have seen this a little, it happened with Tiwini and with some other investigators, but never as clear as with Arenteiti. When she first started she hated missionaries and the church and her face was dark. It naturally fell into a frown. But then she heard and accepted our message. She started reading and praying and her face lightened. It literally changed to be smiling all the time. But then she faced some persecution and had a hard time at home, and I could see that there was a problem before she told us. It turns out she had stopped praying and reading. But then we helped her and challenged her and she started again. Immediately her face was back. She laughs and smiles all the time again. It is so incredible to me that this gospel is so true it even can change how you look to the better. I have already seen this change in her husband. He went from normal to having Santa Claus eyes that twinkle with a grin. It's a silly explanation but it is as close as I could find. The gospel is True.

Recently we have started teaching Tiwini's wife and youngest son. They used to be anti-mormon but have had their hearts softened so much. Every time we teach them we get the feeling that they know everything we say before we teach them. I think that Tiiwini has taught them everything that he learned as he learned it.Also in our first lesson we asked them to pray to get their own testimony. Then when we followed up they both said that they knew that this church was true. They have already accepted the truth we just need to teach them the doctrine so that they can be baptized. I love seeing how one man can make such a huge difference in his family.

I am now working with Elder Davis. He has been out for over a year now. It is so nice to be with someone so experienced and ready to answer and deal with all of the problems and situations that we are put into. He is really big on all of the missionary things that I have been excited for all of my life. He wants to be exactly obedient. We follow the culture and do a lot of the things that people want us to do, but obedience is the first priority. Elder Miller and I tried to make it like that, but got too scared of people. Now my focus is better. 
He also refuses to let a lesson fall into routine. Teaching lessons the same way every time is so easy here, but he doesn't want that to happen. So we teach by the spirit constantly switching back and forth in our lessons. It is so hard, but so fun. We also actively try to receive revelation for our investigators to best help them to improve and progress. Also he is a super hard worker. we set really high goals but they are still achievable because he is willing to work for them. From him I am learning how to teach by and follow the spirit, how to be more afraid of God than Man, and how to work. It is so fun, but a challenge everyday. I love this work and these people.
Have a great week preparing for Easter and General Conference!
Elder Morley

Monday, March 23, 2015


Howdy Folks!
Subject says 'Hello from the people from Abaiang' roughly
This has been a great couple of weeks. Sorry I didn't write last week,
the internet worked but the power cable didn't so no power for the
computer (and it's Kiribati so it takes a bit to get a new one). Then
same problem today, but we found out we could email somewhere else in
the evening. Quick update before crazy adventure time. Transfers
happened on the 12th, Elder Miller went to another outer island,
Aranuka. And Elder Davis came as his replacement. He is from Cache
Valley UT, but unfortunately he went to Mountain Crest...well it's
better than Logan High! He has been out for just over a year. It is
cool to be with someone that is so experienced and knows what to do in
new situations (Elder Miller was just 6 week older than me). Also he
is big on exact obedience, so we work hard every day and do our best
to follolw all rules, big and small.

The week before and a little bit after he got here we had really bad
weather. I just figured it was a bad storm, but mom tells me that it
was a Cyclone. Apparently those do happen. I was rather sick at the
time so we spent a lot of time in the house and were only mildy
affected. It was super windy and rainy and the ocean was really rough,
but it didn't bother us much at all. Fun side note, the word for
bad/rough ocean is the same as the word for war. Which pretty well
describes how it looked. Tarawa had a lot of dammage and so did a
little islet called Ribono but it didn't bother me!

Speaking of Ribono I went there last week. If you look at a map of
Abaiang there are a bunch of tiny little islands in a string just off
of it. Ribono is the first inhabited island to the North of Abaiang
(it is the 6th off the coast). About a month ago we got a refferal for
an investigator that lives in Ribono. We thought it was really cool,
and found out if we had permission to go from President. When we got
approval we made planse with someone in our branch that is from that
islet to go there. We were going to go on Tuesday the 10th, but then
we found out a bout transfers and felt it best to wait a week. That
sunday the refferal came to Church! Somehow he found out about the
location and time and found a boat to get there, but he is really
interested. His name is Tawaia (Te-why-uh). So we set up a day with
him to come for the 17. Then Elder Davis came and we got it all set
up. We planned to bike to the northernmost town on Abaiang, meet our
guide there on a motorcycle, then walk on the ocean at low tide to
Ribono. Unfortunately the low tide was at 7:30 and the town is a 2
hour bikeride away. So we woke up at 4:30 and biked there. We ended up
taking a boat out to the island and walking back. They were expecting
us there and SOOOO excited to see us.

Tawaia and his wife Tokarei (Toe-kah-ray) were really strong catholics
(He studied in Fiji for 4 years to be a catholic Brother), but then
their oldest daughter went to Moroni, the LDS HighSchool on Tarawa,
and converted. She sent them a letter saying how she has gotten a
testimony in this church and how happy it has made here and that they
should take lessons with the missionaries. Off of that one letter they
declared themselves Mormon to their Catholic friends (the island is
95% catholic) and got missionaries to come. There muct have been more
because they were so receptive and open to our lessons. They have
definitely been prepared and make it into the Golden Investigator
Status. They accepted and retained everything they told us. They were
excited to hear the docterine that we could pray to gain a testimony
and that it is just between us and God. They are very well educated so
we were able to teach all of the Restoration (my first time ever doing
that) and then after a break the Book of Mormon. Unfortunatey Kiribati
has run out of Kiribati Book of Mormons, so we gave them mine, but it
was so worth it. They are so excited for this gospel.

The island is super small with only 200 or so people on it. We walked
around the entire outer edge twice and if we didn't stop it would've
taken us 20-30 minutes. We walked the whole edge once to follow
culture (super cool) then to tract (even cooler). My goal was to tract
to every house on the island, which was totally doable, but we only
went to those were people weren't busy so would accept our message
better. In the process we make a good impression with lots of people
and got two new investigators. We were also able to find that there
are at least 2 families that have been LDS for a lo0ng time, but then
moved to this island and haven't been able to have contact with the
church in years. However both of them had stayed firm and not drifted
to other churches. One asked us if we could start having sacrement
meeting there and that they would be willing to switch between houses
to make it work. The other family was even stronger. The dad's name is
Autin (say Austin). He has been a member of the church for years and
was even a high councilman for a while. But then he got sick with a
problem in his foot so he couldn't work, so they moved to Ribono. His
wife is from there. He said that they were super said to leve the
church, but felt it was right for their family. 

We went to his house,
talked for a while, then he asked us to give a spiritual thought,
because they hadn't heard any kind of thing from the church in a year.
After wards he and his wife couldn't stop expressing their gratitude
that we came. They were in tears that someone from the church came to
visit them on their catholic island. Their gratitude and faith to stay
strong was the most beautiful thing. The spirit was so strong. I wish
I had words to express it, but it was definitely one of my favorite
experiences on my mission. He holds the Melchezidek priesthood, so we
think that he could become a Unit Leader there so that they could hold
church there every week. At first it would be only 3 families, but
there is so much potential there for growth. We will go back as soon
as we can. The only problem is that now we have 4 areas to work in. It
used to be 2 days a week on each of our three areas, but now we have a
fourth, so we don't know how it will work. Also it takes so long to
get there. If we take a boat from our town it will be ridiculously
expensive, but if we bike and take a boat it will take hours with the
biking plus the waiting for a boat time. Walking takes over 2 hours
and the tide has to be just right. It is a problem, but one worth
solving because the faith of the people there. I love this church that
we are willing to go just for 1 family, and now there is 3 so we need
to go even more.
I love this work so much. Elder Davis and I are working as hard as we
can and are seeing great results.
I love you all and hope you have a great week!
Elder Morley

Monday, March 9, 2015

I'm Alive 3/9/2015

I'm sorry I didn't write last week. Just as I was starting my mass email the power shut off for the entire building a half hour before our time ran out. It was really disapointing. I didn't write yesterday because it was a national holiday, Women's Day. All of the schools and the council office were closed (the only places on the island with internet). So now I will give a quick update.

It has been a great couple of weeks. I have eaten worms (nothing new, but still weird), stingray, dog and cat. Always good times in the islands!

My favorite experience in the past couple of weeks was teaching Tiiwini about temples and family history work. He is the first person I have ever taught that has understood how cool and how big a blessing the temple is. Before he was baptized we taught him the Plan of Salvation and how people that weren't baptized in this world will go to spirit prison. He was the only person to every ask, 'Well how will they get baptized?" I wanted to answer his question then, but his mind was pretty blown after the lesson, so we said that we would teach him later. So last week was finally the time. As soon as he found out what the temple was and what happens inside a light came into his eyes and he gave us 100% of his rapt attention. He almost hungrily asked us questions about how he would do work for his ancestors so that he could meet them in heaven. The spirit was so strong and he soaked in everything we told him. Families can be together forever. People who died without knowing to gospel or being baptized can be baptized after they die through the temple. God loves all of his children and wants all of them to receive salvation. The temple is Gods House so it is clean and pure and the spirit is so strong inside. And lastly he if he keeps God's commandment and stays clean he can go to the temple in a year and the Church will pay for him and his family's plane ticket to the nearest temple. This Gospel is so amazing. I fell so blessed to be able to share it with Tiiwini and all of my Brothers and Sisters on this island.

My next favorite event happened to also be with Tiiwini. A couple of weeks ago he told us about a small plot of land he had back in the woods and how he basically wanted to make it into a garden paradise. So we offered to do service with him to help it get started. Much to our surprise, it wasn't anywhere close to a garden yet, still just an uncleaned plot of forest full of trees. So he gave both of us Machetes and had us start cleaning as much ground as we could. It was so much fun. Most of the trees were small and kind of hollow (no idea what they are called in English) so we could cut down a swath of them with one blow. Others took a fair bit of hacking to get them to fall, but it was always worth it. Not only were we bonding and helping a man that we love so much, we were using Machetes! (Seriously one of the only tools that you can find here). Most services that we do here consist of sitting and chatting for an hour, doing a medial task for 30-45 minutes, then chatting for another hour. This was the first time we got to work, get dirty, sweat, and we had so much fun doing it. Unfortunately I had huge blisters on every single one of my fingers afterwards...But it was worth it!

One last bit of news: My Companion, Elder Miller, is getting transferred. We have had a great 2 months together, but I know that I will learn and grow with my upcoming companion.  (Elder Morley will now be companions with Elder Davis, also from UT.)

I love this work so much. It truly is the Lords work and His true gospel.
I Love you all so much!
Elder Morley