Sunday, May 25, 2014

It's a Hard Knock Life

Holy Llamas. This is was the craziest week of my life. Not only my life. It started out last Monday. Sister Amituanai and I finished off our P-day with a much needed nap. (: Then at 6 o'clock, we rode our bikes to our appointment. We had FHE with a less active lady in our ward. (: Her name is Sonia and she is so awesome. She has been on and off active for her whole life and she is just starting back into activity once again. We had an awesome lesson with her and we watched some Mormon Messages that really touched her. (:We finished up FHE with her and left. Well, we got onto the road and we were riding down the hill when the front tire of my bike hit a pothole and sent me flying over the handlebars. I knew right then that I was probably going to die...the next series of unfortunate events happened all in a matter of seconds,but I'm going to try and describe them to yous all: my hands went smashing into the footpath and then because of the angle of my 'dive,' my forehead then smashed into the footpath. Looking back, I think I might've blacked out, but I can't remember. Then I remember my arm/elbow hitting the ground and assuming that it was broken. But fearing my bike was going to flip over onto me, I rolled to the left, which affirmed to me that my arm was broken. I got up as fast as I could, but I'm not really sure how fast that actually was. I stood up and by this time Sister Amituanai realized that I had fallen and she was running to help me. All of a sudden I had this burning anger towards my bike/helmet, so I took my helmet off and chucked it at the ground. I was crying at this point, but surprisingly, I wasn't in too much pain. I think the adrenaline was saving me, but I was standing there crying, angry at my bike. Sister Ami, who had her senses about her, decided that we would go back to Sonia's house. In my head, I told myself to man up and stop crying and be tough. We got back to Sonia's house, Sister Ami carrying all the things because my head and my hands were bleeding profusely. Sonia opened the door and for some reason seeing her just made me start bawling all over again! Well, Sonia and her non-member husband helped me clean out my wounds and dress them. Man, washing out my hands was one of the most painful things I've every had to go through. Rocks were coming out of both my head and my hands and my legs were shaking like little leaves. Sister Ami called Elder Sharma and Elder Tautu, our zone leaders, to come and pick us up. By this time my arm started hurting again, and Sonia's husband said that I should probably go to A&E to get my arm x-rayed. The zone leaders came and picked us up and took us to A&E, but the wait was three hours and I just wanted to go home and sleep. So, I slept, with a broken arm and concussion. (: Probably not smart,but I'm alive. The next morning we ended up back at A&E and my arm is indeed broken and I suffered from a minor concussion.

It's made for an interesting week...especially because winter is coming and it is super windy, rainy, and cold. But all good!! I love working and being a missionary! Even the setbacks make it totally awesome! The work is never boring! That's for sure! Here are some pictures of my injuries...(:

I hope that you are all sensing the urgency for missionary work!! Because the time is now! We can't procrastinate anymore. So, share the gospel, talk to your friends, be BOLD!!(: The gospel is true, and the Savior lives! There is no doubt in my mind that we are placed where we are because there are people that can benefit from our presence and from the gospel. (:

"Go forward with a twinkle in your eye and smile on your face, but with great purpose in heart!" -President Hinkley

Sunday, May 18, 2014

cold, Cold, COLD! (Email Dated 18 May 2014)

Not too much of an exciting week this week. Actually, it was rather slow and slower, but it was still good!

It started out on Monday, Skyping my Whanau!!! (: I was so good to see them and talk to them face to face. (:

Tuesday we had District Meeting, which was really good. I struggle to enjoy the presence of my district leader, but he made up for it at District Meeting! It was his first time conducting one and he actually did alright! We talked about Finding People to Teach and it was really good for Sister Amituanai and I. We are struggling to find people to teach right now, so it was a really good training for us! Then we did some really awesome role plays!! We lined up in the hall and had two lines and just rotated teaching the restoration in a minute! They were so effecting! I loved them! I don't normally like role plays, but these were really good and I learned HEAPS! I love the Spirit! He is teaching me so much out here in New Zealand! (:

Wednesday, we visited with a cute little old lady called Sister Keen and while we were getting ready to leave, it started POURING rain. And I am neither exaggerating, nor lying when I say pouring with rain. In New Zealand, no one wears shoes in houses, except for slippers or what have you, and so our shoes were outside and so we got them inside and Sister Keen wouldn't let us leave. Even though we wanted to, she just wouldn't let us leave while it was raining. While we appreciated her concern for us, it was a little...not effective. (: But it was good, she opened up to us and we helped her with some concerns. (:

On Friday night we had our sports night at the chapel! I love sports night! I love of less actives come and it is just a less scary than coming to sacrament cold turkey. (: This ward is seriously so awesome. (: The Lake Ward is known as the "Happy Ward." And it is so true! All the people in this ward are so happy and friendly. (: I love this area! Hamilton is awesome. (:

Our miracle for the week: We texted one of our less actives during planning one night to see if we could come and visit her the next day and she never texted us back. The following night she called and asked us to come and do Family Home Evening with her and her family! Fun Fact: Her husband is a non member and has been coming to church for the past couple of weeks! It's awesome. (:

Well, this week was awesome, as unexciting and slow as it was! I'm so grateful to be a missionary. (: I love the work and I love mission life!!(: I've been out for almost 7 months, and I seriously don't know where the time has gone. It's insane!! I love New Zealand. I can't imagine being anywhere else in the world and I can't imagine not being a missionary. The longer I am here, the more I realize that the Lord knows us and he knows what we need in our lives. (: THE GOSPEL IS TRUE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Go share the gospel with your friends and family! Be a MEMBER MISSIONARY!!!!!!(:

Love, Sister Pearce

4945 -> Skyping the Whanau. (: (Fanoh is how you pronounce it because 'wh' is 'f' here (: )

What A Wonderful Week! (Email Dated May 11, 2014)

This week has probably been one of the coldest on my mission! Sister Amituanai and I have been SO cold. You should see us at night! We literally look like little marshmallows. IMG 4935, 4936. We aren't allowed to sleep with our heaters on, so we just bundle up and try to stay warm in our blankets. (: It is such a fun adventure!! Every night after dinner, when we go back out to work, we have scarves and gloves and coats and jackets and the works. It's quite a sight. (: When they say this cold is different from Utah cold, they mean it. This kind of cold gets into your bones and no matter how many layers you put on, you can still feel the bitter cold. BUT it's so fun! I wouldn't trade this for anything in the world. (:

We had zone meeting this week and one of the sister and I dressed in almost the exact same colours, so we just had to take a picture. (: IMG 4932.

On Friday, our ward put on a Mother's Day Activity and it was such a blast!! The Elder's Quorum fed us and I'm telling was the best feed that I have every had in my life. It even trump those that we have in America. Holy Cow, it was so good!! IMG The Gang. From left to right it goes Cemiel, she's an investigator; Vivid, our recent convert; Sister Amituanai, the best companion ever; and me. (: It was such a blast and I was full as after, it's not even funny how full I was...(:

On Saturday, during Personal Study, I was studying the conference ensign from October, a talk from Ulisses Soares called Be Meek and Lowly of Heart. Holy cow, this talk was definitely an answer to my prayers! "Meekness is the quality of those who are 'god fearing, righteous, humble, teachable, and patient under suffering.' Those who posses this attribute are WILLING to follow Jesus Christ, and their temperament is calm, docile, tolerant and submissive." I had been praying about what attribute I need to work on and this talk stuck out to me! Well, I now know what it is that I need to work on. (: In Zone Conference a couple of weeks ago, Elder Pearson said, "The Spirit knows how you learn, what you know and what you need to know." How true that is!! I love the Holy Ghost and I love learning by it! (:

Vivid is doing really well!! She went to the temple to do Baptisms for the Dead and she loved it!! I love watching her continue to progress in the gospel. It is absolutely beautiful!! (:

I am so good and my area is continuing to grow and get better! I love New Zealand! I love my companion and the New Zealanders, and most importantly, I love the Lord. (:

I hope you are all well and I just want yous to know that I love you!! (:

With Much Aroha,
Sister Pearce. (:

IMG 4931 -> This is a little snail that I captured and put on my bike. I thought it was so cute, smoochie, if you will. (:

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Behold! I am a Disciple of Jesus Christ!! - April 14-20

This week was awesome!! The longer I'm out, the more it becomes surreal that I'm in New Zealand!! (: I absolutely love it here and I wouldn't trade this time for all the money in the world. (: The things I am learning, the skills I am acquiring, the people that I am meeting, I wouldn't trade it for anything. I love getting to spend all of this time absolutely immersed in the Spirit. It is completely 100% true that the Spirit is the greatest teacher!

My companion continues to be awesome!! I am so grateful to be companions with her! She is teaching me so much about the world and about being patient! (: I absolutely love her.

This week has been unbelievably rainy! I can't even believe how rainy it has been. And I don't have ANY rain you can imagine how wet this week has been for me.(:

On Saturday, we went and took Vivid to the Visitor's Centre! It was absolutely amazing!! We taught her about the Plan of Salvation, but it turned out, she taught us more than we taught her! She is so great!! Oh, her baptism is this Saturday, April 26th, at 7:00're all welcome to come!! (: Haha, just kidding!! (:

I don't really have any AWESOME as stories from this week, it was just an average week, but there was one day when Sister Amituanai's bike kept breaking!! The chain kept falling off and getting stuck!! There were two times that this happened and both times made us late for appointments! See IMG 4843. So, at the end of the day, we took her bike to our Bishop's house and he ended up fixing it!! Her chain was bent, so he took out one of the bent links..(:

I've been trying (and succeeding) at eating healthier! (: And I've been forcing Sister Ami to eat healthier too. She doesn't like any fruits or veggies!! So, one of our companionship goals was to both start to like veggies and fruits more...this is our attempt to eat carrots.. 4836 and 4837.(:

I love you!!! You are really so great and just keep truckin' on!! The gospel is so true!! (: I love the Saviour!! Have an amazing week!! (:

Alofa atu, Arohanui,
Sister Pearce

4850->We got bored one rainy night and decided to take a picture of our badges.(:

4839->This is our FHE with Vivid, our investigator and the Halbert Family. Sister Halbert is on the end and Vivid is next to her.(:

4848->This is Sister Amituanai and I at the Visitor's Centre!

We lose NOTHING by trying!! - April 29-May 4

This week was really awesome. (: But first, I'd like to start off by saying how grateful I am to be on a mission. I have never learned so much, grown so much, cried so much, prayed so much, or loved so much in my life. It's safe to say that I have grown up in the 6 months I've been serving the Lord. All in all, I have become someone that I am proud to say I am. I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. I know that this Church is true. I know how powerful prayer is and I know how revalatory it can be. I know, more now than ever, that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is powerful and that it is real. I know that Jesus Christ died for ME and he rose again for ME! And because of His Atonement, I can repent, you can repent, and we all can repent and become clean! I know that Heavenly Father loves me. He loves me and His love for me is deeper than the ocean! How grateful I am for his love.

Okay, well, this week has been a little slow, but Sister Amituanai and I have stayed healthy laughing at one another and with one another. (: We have so much fun!! I think my favorite experience this week happened so randomly that we laughed for probably 10 minutes before we could carry on. We were just leaving our flat and had taken our bikes outside and put on our helmets when we decided that we would just walk to our appointments. Well, I took off my helmet and we put our bikes inside the flat. We were walking down the driveway when I looked over at my companion and SHE WAS STILL WEARING HER HELMET. I think the initial shock of seeing her with her helmet still on and the fact that she had no idea, well let's just say I doubled over laughing and she was so oblivious! She was like "What?!" I mean, she thought something was wrong with me. Anyway, I was laughing so hard that I couldn't speak and all I could do was point at her head. At this point I had tears streaming down my face and my lungs were struggling for air. Then we figured it out and we laughed even harder. Man, it was CRACK UP!!

The shower in our flat has been pooling up when we shower, so I took the liberty of cleaning out the drain. Well, a project I thought would take a couple of minutes, ended up taking 4 hours. It was terrible!! Let's just say that my hands have ventured into parts of a drain that should never be explored. It was so disgusting. But at the same time it was so fun!! Haha, we had to find a wire hanger and bend it and shape it and stick it down there and then we had a toothbrush and eventually we stuck the shower head down there and blew it out. Thankfully it worked and we were able to shower again!! (:

Well, we are struggling to find people to teach right now, but our 2 progressing investigators came as a referral from a member!! Angela and Marisha are mother and daughter and they are both so keen to learn more! They are keeping commitments and it is so awesome seeing their faces as we teach them! We are going to ask them to be baptized tonight and I am so excited!!

In Alma 56:47 it says, "Now they never had fought, yet they did not fear death; and they did think more upon the liberty of their fathers than they did upon their lives; yea, they had been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them." I'd like to take a second and thank my mum for all that she has done for me. The knowledge that I have, the love I have from the gospel I gained because of the example of my mum! She always showed me the example and even though I was an egg and didn't follow her example until a little bit later in life, I know now that she has had probably the biggest influence on me! I love my mum and I am so grateful for all that she does! I didn't quite realize how much I loved her cooking until I came on a mission! (: I love you, Mom and I hope that you know that!! Happy Mother's Day! I can't wait to Skype you and the family!! (:

I hope you all have a fantastic week and I LOVE YOU!!!!!!! (:

Sister Pearce

4919 -> This is Sister Amituanai and I and the Elders that we double cover our ward with, Elder Daugherty and Elder Au. Elder Daugherty is from Brigham City and Elder Au is from Hong Kong.

4920 -> This is me in the process of bending the wire hanger and

4922 -> This is me with my hand in the unexplored regions of the drain. (:

4923 -> One of the Less Actives in our ward served a mission back in '92-'93 and she showed us her badge! Oh, how the times have changed! (:

Started from the Bottom and Now I'm Here - April 21-28

WHOOOOO!!!!!!!! This week was pivotal for me and this week probably reaped more growth from within than any other week on my mission. Something changed, clicked, this week that made me realize a couple of things
      #1- I have really strong faith
      #2- I CAN DO THIS!!
      #3- I Want to do this

I had, technically, my first baptism this week. Vivid Huang got baptized!! What a beautiful service it was too, I absolutely loved it. Something that our mission is trying to incorporate is a missionary presentation while the convert is getting changed and Sister Amituanai and I planned to show the new message "Because of Him." And our ward mission leader prepared something, too. Well, we didn't coordinate and both of the videos were centered on the Saviour. It was so cool! And the Spirit was so strong. I couldn't believe it. (:

This week we had zone conference and it was singlehandedly the most spiritually uplifting experience of my mission. Elder Pearsen from the Quorum of the Seventy came and spoke to us for about 4 1/2 hours about all different aspects of missionary work. But before he started to speak to us, he told us that he could only go as far as we would let him go. And the second he said that the Spirit literally flooded into the room. He then told us that we needed to write down, not only what he said, but what we felt. I seriously could not write fast enough. The Spirit taught me so many things yesterday and it was absolutely life changing. I am so excited to apply what I learned and truly become a consecrated missionary!! I have always been half consecrated, but I am going to be completely consecrated. I am going to give literally all I have to the work. I am not going to hold anything back and I am going to become the best missionary that Heavenly Father knows I can be!! I love being a missionary!!

This month, I hit my 6 month mark. I also hit my year left mark and I honestly cannot believe how fast the time has flown and it motivates me even further to give my all because I cannot get this time back. And I am going to live with no regrets! (:

Something that I'd like to leave with all of yous is this, study the scriptures. Notice that I didn't say read the scriptures. Study, feast, ponder the scriptures. And be where you are when you're there. Give your attention. If you're studying the scriptures, STUDY THE SCRIPTURES, don't have your phone nearby, put it away. Don't be distracted, the Lord deserves your time. Do you deserve to be taught by the Lord?

Sister Pearce (:

4902,3 -> We were filling up the font for Vivid's baptism and there was this MASSIVE cricket swimming around and so I made Sister Amituanai get it out. (:

4905 -> Sister Ami and I baked!! I made Maori bread, Paratihi Bread, and Sister Amituanai made cookies. It was the first time that she had ever cooked anything in her life!! She did a great job. (:

4909,13 -> This is us and Vivid and Bishop Thomsen. (: WHOO!!

4859 -> This is Elder Sharma, Elder Tautu, and Elder Tomorono. (:

I SAW THE ROYAL COUPLE!!!! - April 7-13

This week was absolutely amazing!! It started out a little rough, but the finale was STUNNING!! So, it started on Tuesday with a visit to one of sort of keen investigators. His name is Shayne and we had been teaching him on his porch because his partner was in Christchurch. So, we were teaching him on his porch on this breezy Tuesday afternoon and he mentioned in passing that his partner was back from Christchurch, which was good because he was worried about her. Anyway, so we are having a PERFECTLY HARMLESS lesson with him and all of a sudden, his partner comes tearing through the house, swearing her face off, grabs Shayne by his neck, yanks him into the house, through some pretty evil words told us to leave, and then proceeded to slam the door so hard that #1-I thought I would go deaf and #2-I thought the door/glass in the door would break. Sister Amituanai and I just stood there looking at one another shaking our heads and trying to recuperate. As we're getting back on our bikes to leave, she continues to yell vile, evil things about us through the door and so we just hurried on our way! I'm still not entirely sure what I'm meant to learn from that, but I have a feeling that we'll continue to have experiences like that. It's all character building and I'm loving it!! (:

Well, we're going through our ward list and trying to visit all of the less actives and we chose a family called the Howards. So, we rock up to their house and the door is open and the cars are there, so there are obviously people home. Well, Sister Ami knocks on the door and I'm looking inside and I notice this gigantic water bowl on the floor. I knew that I a huge as animal had to accompany said dog bowl, but nothing had barked or anything when she had knocked. (Fun Fact: Sister Amituanai probably has the biggest fear of dogs on the planet.) Well, she knocks again and then we go to walk around to see if there's another door. And I started walking back to our bikes and Sister Amituanai was walking in front of the window. All of a sudden Sister Ami's face goes ghostly white, and she's brown so that's saying something, and her eyes went as big as saucers and she kind of whispers, "Oh, my gosh." Then a couple things happened at once...I heard this bone jarring growl and then this bark that could only belong to something huge. I panicked a little, but I mean, I was pretty calm.
Sister Ami on the other hand bolted, then I saw this HUGE AS DOG come out of the door. I didn't know what to do and I was a little more than scared at this point. I sort of hid behind the car and accepted the fact that I was probably going to die. (Dramatic, I know) As this dog is coming out of the door, Sister Howard's son came and got it and so I calmed down a little bit. Sister Howard came out and I came out from my hiding place and then remembered that I'm a missionary and I have a companion and I started frantically looking for Sister Ami. From the time she had seen the dog to the time that it got retained she had leaped over a hedge and hid in the next door neighbor's yard. Man, we were all cracking up. It took us a moment to recover, but then we started talking. 4833->is him behind a gate...the pictures don't do him justice...4832-> he's over half the height of Sister Howard...SITTING DOWN...on the porch. He's a South African bred dog and they are bred to protect their families from Lions. So, it makes a little bit more sense why he's so big, but he's not even two yet...

Whoo!! I got to go to the temple this week!! It was absolutely amazing and I feel so blessed to have been able to go to the New Zealand Hamilton Temple!! I got some amazing personal revelation and I felt so close to Heavenly Father! (: BUT as full-time missionaries, we are here to do work for the living and not for the dead, thus only 2 times a year do we go to the temple. (:

Okay, okay, conference was absolutely stunning. I'm not entirely sure if I'll ever be able to comprehend the awesomeness that encompasses the general authorities!! But one thing that stuck out with a resounding triumph to me, was Bishop Stevensens's talk about running the race set before us. It made me realize so many things and helped me to see the importance of running the race that Heavenly Father gives to me. I also, really enjoyed President Uchtdorf's talk!! Holy slap in the face, Batman. (: And Elder Holland's. He was bold and direct and awesome!! I just loved conference. (:

On our way to conference on Saturday morning, we saw the Royal Couple entourage driving down the that was actually really cool. (:

Anyway, it was an absolutely amazing week!! I am having such an amazing experience here on my mission. (: Something that I learned from personal study this morning was that in order to be a consecrated missionary, we need to not only change our behaviours, we need to change our nature. And I started to reflect on what of my nature has changed since I've been on my mission are there are really too many things to count. I love being a missionary and I am loving to see Heavenly Father lead and guide me to become the best person that I can be!

Love you all!! Alofa, Arohanui,
Sister Pearce (:

4815-> This is me and little Eva...she's so cute!!(:

4827-> This is Sister Brown, Sister QaQa, and I. (:

4828-> Sister QaQa and I are pukana buddies. (: