How are you guys doing? This week has been super fun and was filled with a baptism which requires a lot of effort. Happy 4th of July! and Sarah - Happy Early Birthday! So for my last week here in Butaritari we wrapped a few things gave some people the Aaronic Priesthood so that they could help us out while we are gone. I will explain the baptism that happened this week: I was blessed to interview and baptize Ekeuea, Tiita, and Ruitiera. We received a referral from Motimoa, a friend of Ekeuea who lives right across from each other. We didn’t actually contact them until the start of June. We sat down with them the first time and it kind of just felt natural to be there and they were very interested to hear the gospel. At first it seemed way too easy to teach them because they would keep the commitments, but after a little bit of time, I noticed their true conversion and the desire to change and follow Jesus Christ. When we extended a baptismal date they accepted and held true to it and changed behaviors such as drinking tea.
How are your converts? Our converts are doing great! We just gave Tibiriano the Aaronic priesthood yesterday and that family is staying active and we have dinner with them frequently.
How was your week? My week this week was short and full of stuff as we had to plan around a bootakin te mate (funeral service) and Mwakuri iaon te aba (government work that is required by the village). We prepared Ekeuea’s family for baptism. Also we enjoyed a nice Sunday service in Kuma as we took a car and gathered together as one.
What new adventures are you having? This Wednesday we will be starting a new adventure as we are going to Makin and seeing how the church is there.
I've been watching the weather and feeling bad for you. It looks like rain all this week and the "real feel temperatures" are in the 100's. Are you hanging in there? I haven’t noticed a difference it feels normal and the rain has been nice as we just had a huge rain shower with thunder and lightning last Saturday Night but cleared out for a nice car ride on Sunday.
Taking good care of yourself? I believe so. No sicknesses yet. Showering twice a day.
Something I've never asked you is how you get your monthly money allotment. How does that work? On outer islands it is sent as a Telamo which is money that you go and pick up from the Treasurer. If you are on Tarawa, your card is loaded and you can withdraw the money from it. Do you ever run out? It is always just about the right amount for the month. Do you use it to buy stuff other than renting cars for people for church? Yes like food for the mornings, moon tigers for the mosquitos, and snacks for the hunger. Just curious. Are months that have 5 weeks in them harder than other months for budgeting? They are about the same just the big expense is car and internet.
Hi Son! I was hoping to catch you before your left the internet today. I've been asked to speak next Sunday in church on our religious freedom and liberty. Will you share with me what this means to you especially now that you have lived in a foreign land and seen the differences there and here? I'm interested to know what you think and what it is like there?
I'm glad for religious freedom as I have seen it here society is mainly built on religious practices. But something that I have noticed the difference between here and there is if you change your religion in America you are not laughed at made fun of by others. However, if you change your religion here especially if you are older into the religion you are made fun, hated by the community which I know is not right but that is what happens here sometimes when people change their religion. I'm thankful for religious freedom or else we could not really work here because people can't change their religion. Religious freedom allows Missionary work to happen. Well that is my thought. It is important to me because it allows me to express my thanks to my Heavenly Father. It allows me to worship with no problems from state.
My spiritual thought comes from a hymn in Kiribati the title is I Kainanoiko Ngai (I Need Thee Every Hour)
I really like this song in Kiribati as it is simple, but teaches a very valuable principle. That through our Savior Jesus Christ we can stand in front of the Judgment of our Heavenly father clean. I have relied more on my Savior’s Strength to help get through the week. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ Amen.
Elder Samuel Haycock
I am called to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This blog is about my adventures in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ for the next two years in the Republic of Kiribati.
Rachel Haycock - I am the mother of 6 amazing children and the lucky wife of a dear, sweet man. I love to write, read, cook, teach and sew. I hope you feel the Spirit of the Lord as you read about Elder Haycock's adventures in sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.