Monday, April 25, 2016

Kai ke Mate (Eat till you Die)

One year ago on the 27th I opened my mission call to serve in the Tonga Nukualofa Mission. I remember the joy I felt on that day. I couldn't stop smiling. The Spirit filled my whole soul. I often reflect on that was such a powerful day. The Spirit confirmed to my heart that God is sending me to do a special work in Tonga, even though I am so inadequate. I'm so grateful for the decision I made to go on a mission. One of the hardest things I have EVER done, but it's blessing my life now and I know it's going to bless my life throughout eternity. I love my mission.

This past week was Stake Conference. On Saturday, there was a Priesthood adult session at 3 and adult session at 6 and then on Sunday there was the two hour block of Stake Conference and then a fireside that night. And during the course of those three days, we had 3 BIG FEASTS! Seriously, I ate so much. And during each of the feasts, whoever wants to, can get up and share their gratitude, etc. So people just go on forever about how grateful they are for everyone there and Tongans definitely know how to talk...haha they're so great! Then at the end of their little speech, they ask for forgiveness for if they've ever done anything that isn't right to anyone else, and they apologize for if they forgot to say something in their speech, and apologize for if they've ever behaved in a way that wasn't respectful, etc. haha they're so wonderful and humble. I learn things from the Tongan people every single day. 

These past week couple weeks, we picked up quite a few new investigators! So I'll just give a quick summary of some of them:

Pulotu--married with a couple young kids. We met her at her neighbors house who attend the Church of Tonga. The couple at the house got up and left to the store but we taught the first lesson to her. We've taught her a couple of other times and she's so sweet. She asked us in one of our lessons, "you know people don't really like your church, right?" It was so cute. She then explained that a lot of people have shared there opinion with her but she's gonna just investigate to know for herself. We set a baptismal date with her, but she's scared that her husband (he lives in Tongatapu) might not approve.

Dion's not a Tongan name. But we randomly found her one day (it was kinda a miracle how everything had worked out for us to end up at her house) and she invited us in and told us she was going to Tongatapu to get baptized...she had been talking with her cousin who's Mormon and decided to change her life around. She used to be in a gang in Australia and drink and smoke but she's stopped all of this to join the church. The funny thing was that she hadn't ever met the missionaries before. So we started teaching her and it was amazing. Light bulbs were going off in her head the whole time. She was so excited to start reading the Book of Mormon. She went to Tongatapu and met with the missionaries there and got baptized this past week..but she's coming back, so we'll be doing the follow-up lessons with her.

Paea & Nio--they are a couple that are a part of the Wesylian church and Paea is a less active member of the Church but now she preaches in the Wesylian church. She's SO open minded. Like she believes everything from every church is's very interesting. And when we're talking she's listens very carefully and will say things like "Amen" "Hallelujah" and during my prayer she would kinda make sounds...there were a couple times when it was hard not to laugh, just cause I'm not used to it. But I think it's so amazing that she pays attention so much to everything! 

There is so much more to say but I'm about out of time! So I'll update you more next week!
Sister Reid <3

Monday, April 18, 2016

A Visit to Ha'atu'a

I love the work. There is honestly not a more rewarding feeling in the world. This past week we got to vilo hoa (go on splits) with the Sisters in Ha'atu'a (Sister Medina and Pohahau--in my old area!). It was a lot of fun being able to go back and visit with the people brought back a lot of memories.

This past week during language study, I was reading a random Ensign in Tongan and I read an article from Henry B Eyring about asking questions (directed towards Sunday School and Relief Society teachers in the church). He talked about the importance of asking questions. It's something I've been thinking about a lot--but here are a couple things he brought up. Good questions: they don't have an exact right answer (like what's the first principle of the gospel?'s not a bad question, but there are better ones) and it takes a minute for the class to think of an answer, but when they answer it's heartfelt. When he formulates his questions he thinks about the response he will get from his class--maybe one question would be good for one class, but not in another. Questions trigger discussions. And those discussions can inspire change. He also said he uses this when he needs to talk to his children about a serious issue or about an attitude problem. He thinks of questions that will open their hearts and allow them to talk, and then desire to change and be better.

So this week was transfers. Last transfer was only 4 weeks cause they changed something with the MTC dates...I'm not really sure. Buuut I'm staying here in Pangai with Sister Betteridge and I'm very happy about that!! Everyone else in 'Eua is staying too expect for the District Leader (Elder Erickson)--which is really sad for all of us! He's been my District Leader since I've got here so it's going to be a really weird change. But I just realized that because I'm staying here this transfer, half of my mission will be here in the island of 'Eua! I'm so grateful to be serving here!

A couple random things:
-Once a cockroach gets flipped onto its' back, it usually stays that way for a couple days, moving its' legs around, until it dies. I have learned this because of the many cockroaches we find when we come home from work..haha got to love it!
-I ate dove last week! It was pretty good.

Hope you all have a wonderful week!
Sister Reid

Monday, April 11, 2016

Conference, Conference, and CONFERENCE

This week was uplifting and I learned so much. We went to Tonga on Tuesday and did a temple session. It was so beautiful. I love sitting in the Celestial Room with all the other missionaries that will be in the Mission Leadership Conference and with President Tupou and his wife. It is so special. 

Wednesday, was Mission Leadership Conference (Conference #1). We role played lessons 1 and 2 as a group (each companionship would take one principle and role play, then we would evaluate, etc.). We were focused on teaching with the Spirit of Truth and evaluated our role plays on three elements from D&C 50:22 (which Henry B Eyring shared in his talk during General Conference) 1.) Understanding 2.) Edified 3.) Rejoice 

When we teach our investigators, these three things should be there and when we leave they will be rejoicing and will want us to come back. We had a Zone Conference (Conference #2) of the same thing on Friday (the APs came to 'Eua) and so that was awesome to practice again. 

We came back on Thursday because there was a cyclone warning, but luckily it just rained super hard for like 20 minutes and then it was canceled. But it was still super windy so President told all the missionaries to stay inside. Quinton L Cook talked about the Cyclone that happened in Fiji a few weeks back and as we (the missionaries) were listening to this talk this past weekend, we thought about what a blessing it was that it didn't hit very strong where we were (it was the same Cyclone that had caused the little earthquake here). Satan really does try to stop the Lord's work in all kinds of ways.

I was SO grateful for the wonderful opportunity we had to watch General Conference (Conference #3) this past weekend. We got to listen to it in English in another room, so that was kinda nice. I love our dear prophet, Thomas S Monson. Although he only got to speak a few minutes his message is powerful! How important it is for us to use our Agency wisely! I loved like all the talks in conference so it's hard to just choose a few to talk about. I really liked the talk by Steven E. Snow that our Genuine concern should be the success of others and the importance of humility. This life isn't about us and it's so important to rely on the Lord consistently and recognize that we are dependent on him. And Ronald A. Rasband's talk was so good. It's so important to continue gospel study through asking questions and remain cheerful and faithful, always.

Hope you all have a wonderful week and fill your life with those things that will help the Spirit be more fully in your day to day!

Ofa Lahi Atu!
Sister Reid

Monday, April 4, 2016

We Thank Thee Oh God For a Prophet

I'm a little bit jealous that you all get to listen to General Conference right now..but I get to watch it this coming Saturday and Sunday and we're downloading the sessions in English so we can listen to it in English. I'm so grateful for the opportunity we have to listen to a living day prophet and apostles. My testimony and appreciation for our prophet has grown so much stronger. As we talk to many other people from other churches, it's definitely something that sets us apart. Earlier this week we taught a couple named Mamata and Malakai. We started teaching lesson one and it was a bit rough at first cause they weren't really talking and we were trying to follow the Spirit to have them open up but they didn't seem very interested, especially Malakai. When we got to talking about prophets we felt impressed right then to talk about the living prophet on the Earth today. Malakai, who had been looking down most of the lesson, looked up. I pulled out a picture of the prophet and as we explained how there is a prophet on the Earth that leads the church of Christ, they couldn't help but stare in amazement. We invited them to General Conference and they agreed to come! I'm so blessed to be a part of this gospel. I know this church is lead by God through our prophet, Thomas S Monson. 

Sister Betteridge and I get to travel to Tonga tomorrow for Missionary Leadership Conference! Sister Tupou called us last week to be Sister Training Leaders. Again, humbled by the opportunity. I'm so excited cause that means I get to go to the temple again! I'm so looking forward to it :) 

Mateaki, our investigator (12 years old) came to church on Sunday! His sister, Ofa, has been a strong member ever since she was little. We've talked to the mom a lot (less active) and she has expressed her desire in coming back to church, but the dad is a bit stubborn. So we're working on their family. I'm excited to see the miracles that I know are going to happen in this area! 

Ofa Lahi Atu! <3 Hope you all have a fantastic week!
Sister Reid