Monday, April 22, 2013

A guy from Rotterdam, NY - What?

We got a great letter from Jared today.  It's always fun to hear from him.

He said that he was fully recovered from the food poisoning he had the previous week and was feeling MUCH better.  He said that everyone in the congregation where he is serving heard he had been sick and was asking him how he was doing.  He said he just wanted to stand at the pulpit and say:   "It was bad Laulau everyone.  Bad Laulau."  He said that then they'd all understand what he meant.  I looked up laulau in the Pidgin English dictionary and it said that laulau meant traditional Hawaiian dish that consists of salted pork, chicken or fish wrapped in ti or banana leaves and steamed or baked.

Jared said that his week was pretty interesting as a whole.  He said P-day was spent driving around.  They had to go to Honolulu West stake to pick up an air mattress, then they went to Honolulu to pick up some commissary (not sure what that means - maybe they got some stuff from a member at the military base), and then went back to Kapolei.  He said the zone was supposed to go bowling but after following an elder (who swore he knew where the bowling alley was) for 30 minutes, they decided just to go to the stake center and play basketball.  

On Tuesday he had a district meeting in Waianae, which is a 40 minute drive away from where Jared lives. Since is was the last district meeting of the transfer they played the traditional game of jeopardy.  He said it was fun, and that he found out that he really knows his Old Testament and Doctrine & Covenants material.  After the meeting he and his companion had a baptismal interview for the Kalaeloa ward missionaries in Nanakuli.  When they got there only one of the kids was there for the interview.  So Jared's companion interviewed him while the other elders went to find the other kid.  Along the way the other elder's car broke down and Jared had to go wait there until a tow truck came.  Then they ended up driving the other elders to an appointment they had in Kapolei and were lucky enough to have dinner with a very nice family.

Jared said that he's been able to spend time with their bishop's son, who recently returned from a mission and that that was enjoyable.  He said they spent a lot of time contacting part-member families and tracting.

Being a zone leader involves a lot of paperwork and administrative things which tend to keep Jared and his companion busy.  He said they spent quite awhile doing some paperwork for the stake about names and numbers and that it took a long time.  But that the stake leaders really appreciate it.

Jared said that he's really trying to "finish strong" and trying to do as much good as he can for the zone so that when he leaves it will be a good zone for someone else to take over.  He said that two talks have been really motivating to him.  One entitled "Jesus the Perfect Leader" by Spencer W. Kimball and the other entitled "My Mission" by Jeffrey R. Holland.  He said that they've probably changed his life and his outlook on things.  With that kind of recommendation I guess I'll have to read them both.

He has eight new investigators, two of whom have dates to be baptized.  And he told about a great experience he had. He said:  "And then a miracle happened.  A girl that just moved into the ward brought her boyfriend with her and he had been meeting with the missionaries in Hon-west, received 3 lessons and had a baptismal date set.  He said that he wanted to finish the lessons and get baptized! BLEW MY FREAKING MIND!  Heavenly Father certainly blessed us with that one.  And guess where he's from?  NY!  Guess where in NY?  ROTTERDAM!  So cool!  I'm hoping that my last convert in the mission will be someone from my home-stake:)"

It's always great to hear from Jared!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Food Poisoning

Sadly Jared said that he and his companion got food poisoning and spent several days this past week just trying to recover. He had the same problem he had when he was in Kona, throwing up blood when vomiting. But this time he knew what was happening and wasn't so freaked out by it. Sadly it happened three times - no fun!

He did tell a couple of experiences he had this week. One was where he went tracting and was preached at by two girls for half an hour. They told he and his companion that they didn't know what they believe and that they don't preach about Christ. Then after that experience they got yelled at by some random guy. He said they were really tempted to just go home, that it was 8:00 o'clock already and people start getting grumpy about them knocking at that time, and they'd had a really long day/week so they really just wanted to go home, plan, and sleep. But instead they decided to stay out and wound up contacting a part member less active family they had been trying to get a hold of for a long time. The man set up an appointment for them to teach his wife and child. Jared said they got back in the car, started driving and were so happy they'd knocked on that door in the last 40 minutes of their Friday night.

Here's a picture of Jared's zone p-day hike last week which was on a steep ridge right off of Lahilahi street in Waianae. He said it was actually a tricky climb, but fun.

Monday, April 8, 2013

General Conference

Jared had a busy week.  On his p-day he got to play basketball. 

On Tuesday he got to go to Honolulu.  His companion had lost his wallet and had to get new identification. 

On Wednesday they tracted and visited part member families the whole day. 

He said Thursday was more of the same. 

On Friday they had a great district leader training meeting. 

On Saturday Jared and his companion were able to watch General Conference, which he thought was awesome.  He said the first session starts at 6:00am until 8:00am.  Then the afternoon session for they is from 10:00am through noon.  He said after conference they went to an awesome meeting with a man.  He said it was the most spiritual lesson he'd had in a long time.  They went to the Priesthood session of conference Saturday night. 

Then they attended conference again on Sunday.  After conference on Sunday he said they had bookend meetings with members of the stake presidency and the high counselor over missionary work in the stake.  He said it was an awesome meeting, but that they were really tired when they finally got home.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Happy Easter

Howzit Everyone!  Happy Easter:)

It sounds like everything was good over the past weekend, although it might've gone down a little when Dad totaled the Van... that's a pretty big bummer, but I guess Lauren has all the info on that so if you have questions then just ask her...  Anyways, on to other things on my end.

Hey Dad could you check the tracking info on my license again, Sister Smiley said that she got an envelope for me and shipped it out of the office to my address but I still haven't gotten it yet.  I'm going pretty stir crazy without that thing...

Mom, I waited till easter to open my package and everything was trounced on the inside!  All the boxes had glue on them so I knew they were like last year in their box design, but all the candy was out of the packages and had gotten a little Hawaiianized... but thanks for the thought Mom!

April fools.  

I got my license earlier this week.  I'm pretty sure angels sang when I opened that package (you all know how much I like to drive haha)  and I got the Easter package the box was intact and the candy has been delicious:)  Thanks for everything Mom, and Dad!  Was that a rude trick to do?

Well My Easter was OK (all joking aside now).  It was a really spiritual meeting in church, two missionary farewell talks and then sacrament, then gospel doctrine.  We talked about scriptures in modern revelation referring to the resurrection   Then because it was 5th sunday we had a combined meeting where we watched Finding Faith in Christ.  I think that was my favorite time ever watching that movie.  Then the Bishop got up and was talking about the atonement and missionary work and I started to get emotional.  Then he started getting emotional about his two sons on missions and his daughter who leaves for hers today and how he could literally feel their love for the Savior on Easter, and I almost lost it.  I just got thinking about you all and how much I missed you guys, but how much I love the mission and how long I've been out.  It was just a weird mix of emotions that just totally overcame me.  It would've been the first time I had flat out cried in public in a long time.  It was a pretty close call.  Luckily I carry a handkerchief so that kinda helped the situation a bit.  So a great day of church, and then we airballed in missionary work.  It was so frustrating. 

 Nothing productive happened from the hours of 3:00 to 8:30pm. We tried to see people but they we dodging us, or just weren't receptive in general.  Mom said that she loved proselyting on Easter cause the people were more receptive... but that just wasn't the case in Kapolei.  People are more interested in their riotous living to be concerned with the Savior I guess.  Oh and did I tell you that we got dropped by our last investigator last week?  So yeah now we've got zip.  Soooo.... pray for member referrals?  Haha that'd be amazing.

Well I think that's about it!  I Love you all, thanks for all your love, support and prayers, I feel them all the time:)
Ofa Lahi Atu, and Mahalo Nui Loa,

Elder Brooksby