Sunday, November 24, 2013

Pictures from Whitesands Tanna

This picture was taken yesterday (Sunday) at our unit.  Oh man, my heart is so full.  We had 67 people come to our small unit.  The spirit was so strong.  Last time we held church in our new unit the attendance was 45.  My companion and I have been working hard to get people to come to church.  A few of the priesthood men have been building a small shelter for us to meet in.  The work is moving at a rapid pace in our area.  We have 7 souls getting interviewed for baptize this Saturday.  With faith in every footstep the work is moving! 
We had a baptism on Saturday.  This is a picture of  Mama Dorkis with her two pikininis and Joyce one small girl.  Mama Dorkis had been meeting with the missionaries for years and years.  Her heart finally softened and she decided to be baptized.  We have no water in my area besides the sol water (ocean), so we baptize there every time.
This picture is in the kitchen...oweii oh man... this was taken on one of the hardest days in my mission this far.  If you cant tell I am absolutely SOAKED from the rain and seet seet is on my face.  All of my clothes are drenched in this photo because we had just finished our three hour hike in the rain.  We got to our last appointment and one mama's hands was burned really bad (she couldnt even lift the pot to cook).  I told her that I would cook her and her family their dinner.  I tried my best to find a few things around the kitchen and in her garden to put into a soup and it actually turned out pretty well! They call me chief chef Braon now! haha. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Almost Thanksgiving

I can no belief that it is almost Thanksgiving! It seems like it was just yesterday that it was the beginning of summer and I was getting everything ready to come out here! Christmas is just around the corner...can you belief it? I cant! No one here celebrates Thanksgiving, I think that is an American thing, but I bet that the food will be great and there will be lots of cutesty things because you are in  charge.  I hope that at least one of your two remaining children will help you clean and prepare for the feast! (Good luck!!)  Oh man..Turkey cookies....cookies..haha.  Please eat at least 20 in memory of me! And pumpkin pie too! ;) haha maybe I will try to make a fake thanksgiving here...probably not! ;)  It sounds like every something is going well at the house, I hope that Ben and Liz are helping you a lot.  What was Mason sick with? I am glad that he is getting better!!  I LOVE the pictures! Thank you too much for all of them!!
This week has been great! We have been working really hard in the farther villages in our area so it has been an exhausting week to say the least! Since standing up that unit, we have received a lot of referrals so that means we have had to walk far far far beating far almost every day this week.  On Tuesday and Wednesday this week we left our house at 5:30 AM to go to area and got back to the house around 7 in the afternoon.  On Wednesday a member took us around and showed us three different villages that had never been visited by missionaries before.  They were all so excited to see us, and this gave us a lot of opportunities to teach! Wednesday afternoon we were walking and the volcanic ash was raining so bad that our skin was completely covered. (the ash has been made our hair start to fall out! My hair is thin now!)  We had been walking for three hours and we were exhausted. When we were walking up the last creek of the day it started pouring rain. We had one more person to try to see at the top of the creek.  My companion and me did look at each other about to cry.  For a small second we both wondered why in the world Papa God was doing this to us.. we were trying so hard to make good work.  But then I remembered a quote I had found during personal study.  "The help of heaven requires working past the point of fatigue."  I knew that we needed to show Papa God that we were willing to work past our point of fatigue.  That we were willing to do whatever we could to see his children. We both prayed and prayed that we would be able to make it to the village.  We knew that we were only going to be able to make it with the help of Papa God. When we arrived at the village the people were excited too much to look us and we were able to teach over ten people.  I know without any doubt that Papa God helped us that day and every single day out here in the field.  Without the help of him there is no way that us missionaries could do what we do every single day.  I have seen the hand of Papa God every single day on my mission and I know that as we take time to appreciate his hand in our lives we will see it even more.  Missionary work is amazing.  I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to be a part of it! I love it here!! :)
I hope you have an amazing week!! :) :) 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Where We Worship Now


Time flies out here in the islands, I cannot believe it is already November. This week has been amazing! Everything over here is going really well! My companion and I have been making full up progress in the area, and Papa God has been helping us every step of the way.  Yesterday we were able to hold our first sacrament meeting with our unit in Lapangtawa.  Yesterday was probably one of the most amazing days on my mission this far.  We had been working hard to get every something figured out for our unit.  We planned to hold the first meeting at the  house of a member.  We left our house with 1 Melkezidick priesthood leader at 6:30 to make sacrament at 9.  When we arrived to the village there was full up people already there.  They had made a small house for sacrament and they were all waiting for us to start.  We had classes first: I taught all the pikininis for primary, Lutui taught women class and a papa taught priesthood.  After we all gathered into the small house for sacrament meeting. As we sung the first song the spirit was so strong.  Almost every papa and mama in the place had tears in their eyes.  We didn't have sacrament cups so that was interesting, but none the less it was just another testimony to me that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is not a church of any man, it is not the church of America, it is the church of Christ.  It does not matter where you worship, but it is about who we worship.  I have never felt the spirit so strong in my entire life.  People got up to share testimonies who had prayed for years that they would have a church in this place.  Papa God is aware of each and every one of His children.  He will always provide a way for us as we keep the faith.  I am so grateful for the opportunity to be a servant of Him in this place. Missionary work is amazing.  Needless to say this week was nothing short of a miracle. 

Thank you too much again for that package! It looks like packages are doing really well here.  They get here really fast, and I haven't heard of anything getting stolen yet.  I will keep you posted though.  Thank you too much for every something that you guys do. 


Sunday, November 3, 2013

Lost In The Bush


First of all can I just tell you all that I love too much all the photos you have been sending! I cannot belief that mason is getting so big! I cannot wait to hear him talk! Teach him the name of me will you? It sounds like Halloween was a blast.  Here in Vanuatu we don't celebrate Halloween, so I missed out on all the lollies this year. The chicken noodle soup and the cookies look amazing! Owiee, I miss meals like that! But belief it or not I can literally eat anything now.  Picky eater no more.  I just eat whatever the people give me, and since I have been sick that has been pretty interesting. It sounds like things at our home are going really well. I love too much to hear about everything! Mom, thank you too much for sending those packages! My family here will love it, and I am sure they will share with me!  I will let you know when I receive it, I thinks that it will take a little longer since the months now are busy sort of. 

So yes, my companion is gone, she went to Vila to rest.  I think that there comes a time for every person where they physically, mentally, and emotionally break down, and that was the time for her.  I am glad so much that she will be able to rest for a small time and then be transferred to a more developed area.  I was sad to watch her go, but oh has Papa God blessed me with one amazing companion! We work well too much together and I love her so much.  My previous companion Sister Natto was quiet small, but my new companion Sister Lutui and I are both so loud and outgoing.  It has been such a blessing to our work in our area.  This week we have been waking up every day before 5 to sketch out plans for our new "group"/unit and we have been walking, walking, go, go. We have been going to areas that missionaries haven't gone in years because they are too far away.  Papa God has been blessing us so much as we have tried the best of us to labor in his vineyard.  We were able to teach over 40 lessons this week and we have a bunch of people ready to receive baptism close up now.  I am so blessed! I love it too much here! Papa God has been working hard hard hard in making these people ready to recieve his gospel and I am lucky too much to be a part of it!

This week Sister Lutui and I decided that we would cover 5 areas in one day.  We left the house at 8 and took a member with us to help us show us the right road because I had never been to Loono village before.  Well..we walked for 3 hours down and up 2 huge creeks and it was raining like crazy when our member we had been taking with us kept stopping and thinking.  Finally I asked her if she knew where we were, she said, "Sister, I have never been on this road before. I don't know how to get to Loono or back to the house of you."  Oh great...we are lost in the bush and my energy is about at 0! It was then and there that my old bossy self came out to shine. We kept walking and the next man we saw I asked him how to get to Loono.  He laughed and laughed and told us that we had missed the road 2 hours ago and would have to go down 2 more creeks to get to our house before dark.  That was my first experience being completely lost in the bush, and from now on I ask the member we take about 8 times if they know where they are going.  

I am so grateful for the chance I have to be serving as a missionary here.  My testimony of the power of faith has grown too much.  I know that with faith in Papa God and His divine power, anything is possible.  He never forgets us his children.  No matter where we are, he is aware of every fasin and action that we make.  He knows what is best for us, and he will show us always the path we need to take.  But this is only possible through righteousness and faith in Him.  I know that sometimes He lets us struggle for a small time to make us stronger. Papa God needs strong soldiers in this last days. Every experience that we receive in this life will build us up and make us stronger.  As long as we do everything we can to follow the Savior in this life, we will reap our rewards: some in this life, and many more in the life after.  

I hope you all have a great week!! Thank you too much for every something that you all do for me.  Pray hard and work harder!! Yolkokakaeek! 
Sister Braon