We started working with a really great Tongan family, Faiva is their name, and they are really awesome! They are less active, but Brother Faiva really wants to get the priesthood and so we've been working with Sister Faiva because she's super less active and they aren't married and they have to be married before he can get the priesthood. Their littlest girl, Lona, got baptized on Friday, but I'll tell more about that later. (: The first time we met with them, Brother Faiva made us a traditional Tongan dish, Raw Fish and Capsicums (they call peppers capsicums here). I was actually pretty excited to try it! What is was goes as follows: raw fish, like...completely raw, in coconut cream, with tomatoes and green peppers. It was actually pretty tasty. Then I found a bone and it kind of just turned me off to the whole raw fish scene. Luckily, Elders Hester and Dellaca were "full" so Sister Holmes and I followed in their footsteps. Sister Holmes despises sea food and I was really impressed that she tried it. (:
This week was super as rainy! Every day this week, we got at least a little bit of rain, but mostly a heap of it. I was soggy and wet the majority of the time this week, but guess what?! It was super awesome. (: The humidity does wonderful things for my hair and it just looks awesome all of the time. (:
So, this week Sister Holmes and I started Quote of the Day! So, basically we just look for hilarious things that happen in the day and then at the end of the day we write them down on our Quote of the Day Calendar! A couple of the funniest quotes the week come from Elder Hester. He is just a cheeky as Kiwi and everything that comes out of his mouth is so hilarious! We were talking about food the other day and he goes, "I like bananas on my cereal, with yogurt, and honey. (Then he paused) It's a natural sweetener!" It was so funny! Another one is, we took one of our investigators to the Faith in God activity and Sister Tangi was having the kids do this activity where they would suck in a straw to pick a carrot up and take it over to the table and Sister Tangi demonstrated it and she was like sucking in hard out and Waimaria, one of the primary girls goes, "(GASP) She can't breathe!" And she was all panicked. It was really cute and funny at the same time. (: Oh! So, Elder Dellaca is a special soul and thinks that it's okay to listen to Disney music in the car and Elder Hester does not like that. So, we were driving somewhere the other day and every time a song came on Elder Hester would ask Elder Dellaca, "Does this song remind you of Jesus Christ? Is it conducive to the Spirit?" Oh, man. It was super hilarious! Pretty much every time Sister Holmes and I are with the Elders we have to refrain from laughing because when we do laugh Elder Hester asks, "What for ye laugh?" They are both really awesome elders and Elder Hester is funny in a more mature way than Elder Dellaca, but we love them both!
The other day, Sister Holmes and I were walking up Tasman Street and Tasman connects with Helvetia. They're perpendicular. (I remember a few things from school!) But anyway, I look in the road and just sitting there, in the middle of the road it a bird with it's mouth open and it's just sitting there. A car drove past and the bird didn't even flinch, so Sister Holmes and I decided to stand there like idiots and watch this bird. Cars kept driving past just missing it and it STILL WASN'T MOVING. So, I decided to do the humane thing and throw a rock at it. I hit is full on with the rock and it still didn't move. Don't worry, I didn't touch it, but I was sorely tempted to kick it. (; Anyway, so every time a car would pass it would flutter it's wings a little. Sister Holmes and I were just kind of paralyzed watching this bird commit suicide. Alas, a car turning from Helvetia onto Tasman ended this poor, stupid bird's life. It was fluttering and it's wings were going all spastic and then it gave up the ghost. I don't think I've ever watched anything die before, so it was kind of traumatizing. We went back to the fateful spot a couple hours later and to keep it G rated, he was as flat as a pancake...maybe even flatter. Bleh, it was supa supa gross and sad and depressing.
So, Lona Faiva's baptism. Sister Holmes and I got to fill up the font, which in turn allowed me a chance to play the piano! Oh, how I miss sitting and playing the piano. But yeah, that was a fun adventure, trying to figure it out. There are heaps of different things you have to do. Plug, turn on the pump, oh, guess what, the pump leaks, so put a bucket under it, turn on the heater, don't let the heater door close while in the heating process, oh and the controls are all in different rooms. (: But I got to hang out in the boys bathroom...for a heap load amount of time. Haha, then the Tongan elders showed up at the church so, I quickly and in my awkward self way, exited the bathroom for males. (: Anyway, I guess there was a horrible lack of communication between all of the people and it turns out Sister Holmes and I were supposed to come up with a program. Well, fun story short, we came up with the program and wrote talks all in about 5 minutes. (; It was awesome! Oh, and our Elders didn't show up, so we had to scramble to find someone to baptize her! But the service was really good and they had good food afterwards, so it was nice. (:
I got myself a mini hymnal this week because I was dying without it. So, I ordered one from the mission office and it got here this week! (: They don't really have hymn books here and so, it's nice to have one that I can use in sacrament. (:
So, the most frightening thing of my entire life happened this week. Sister Holmes and I were in companionship study on Friday, I think, and there was all of this banging going on outside of our window. So, me being the Nosy Nelly that I am, I went over to the window to look out. The next sequence of events happened all in about 10 seconds. I opened the curtains, looked out, saw a can of something, nek minit, bald man right in my face, scream, shut the curtains, turn around, Sister Holmes is laughing on the floor, I fall on the floor laughing my head off. It was the scariest moment of my life. But it was so hilarious. (: (Nek Minit is just next minute, but here they say it funny because there's a video, anyway, long story, they say Nek Minit. (: ) But yeah, I think that from now on, I'll be a little more cautious looking out the window. (:
We have a meal roster!! Haha, Sister Kwan-Wing went around on Sunday and hunted down people to feed us! So, we have feeds almost everyday for the next two weeks. (: And we have somewhere to go on Christmas!!!!!!(: The Coopers are kind enough to let us invade their home on Christmas Day and feed us. They fed us last night, Sunday, and it was SO GOOD. There was heaps of food and we were stuffed like turkeys after, but it was good as food. (: So, we're excited for that! I can't wait for Christmas! We have heaps of service lined up for the next couple of days and I am just really excited that #1:I'm not in the -4 degree weather like ya'll back home and #2 that people are finally allowing us to serve them! Elder Hester and Elder Dellaca are serving in Waiuku, which is where an area of our ward is and there is a bridge that we get to clean up this week! I cannot wait! And then at the high school, Wesley College, the teachers are letting Sister Holmes and I come and help with some stuff that they need. (: I am so excited!
So, this is our shaming missionary moment of the week.......we met someone on the street and set up a time to go and meet with them, but all we know about this person is that their name is Taylor. We don't remember their address or whether it's a male or a female...we could swear that we wrote all of ... it's ... info down, but we can't find it anywhere! I like to think there's a reason, but mostly it's probably just lack of something on our part. (:
We had a zone meeting this week and it was really awesome. (: We talked heaps about how we pray and about how we can pray better. I've really been trying to implement their advice and counsel into my daily and nightly prayers. It has made a world of difference!
During personal study this week I found this scripture that I'd like to share with yous.
2 Corinthians 8:9 "For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, thought he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich." I've been studying a lot about grace and the atonement lately and this scripture made everything kind of click into place. The Savior made such a huge sacrifice for us. He, the Only Begotten of the Father, the Savior and Redeemer of the world, left His throne on high and came to the earth to suffer for everything that we'll ever feel in this life, to atone for us, to die for us because He loves us. And because He was willing. Not only because of that, but because He was exactly obedient to His Father in Heaven. "Not as I will, but what thou wilt." It just blows my mind to think that He suffered for our sins, our sicknesses, our sorrow, our loneliness, or pain, everything and all that He asks of us is to repent and believe on His name. Why is it so hard for people to see that?! But no matter what, we are going to teach them, and they can use their agency to either accept or reject our message.
I've noticed that whenever I'm negative, I don't have as good of a day. But when I'm happy and positive, Sister Holmes and I see heaps of miracles! And I've also noticed that when my prayers are lacking, so is my day. That's why our prayers as missionaries are so important! And I love praying, it's not something that I feel like I have to do anymore, it's something I look forward to doing.
My address for now and forever on my mission will be
Sister Rachel Pearce
131 Ward Street
All of the letter go to the mission office and then the zone leaders distribute them. (:
Oh, my goodness, I love you all so much!! And my love for you grows stronger every day, but I miss you less and less each day as well. (: You are in my prayers every day and every night. (:
Sister Holmes and I before we left our house in the morning. (: So we still look all pretty. (:
Sister Holmes and I after a long walk in the wet rain. It was pretty awesome. (:
Me standing next to a sign that we thought was super hilarious! Such a sassy little shoveling man. (:
The picture of New Zealand as we're landing in our huge as airplane. (: That was the first I ever saw of this beautiful land that I'm serving in. (:
This picture is my awesome watch tan line. (:
This one is my awesome shoe tan line. (: