Eh, Bonjour! Ia ora na! Salut!
Let's get down to business!
Oh my goodness, I love Tahiti! I love it!!!
My trainer is Soeur Teinauri from Tubuai and she only speaks French... (she knows how to speak some English too but we pretend to not know that).. Alors... We only speak French all day, everyday and it is the best! Sister Teinauri has been serving for 15 months, so I am her last companion before she goes home and we really want to work hard to find people to teach before she is finished. For now, she mostly teaches the lessons and then I get to bear my testimony at the end, and slowly for the next twelve weeks, teach more and more of the lesson with her.
Our secteur is Tuauru in Mahina, Tahiti. I feel like I'm in the jungle... It is awesome! We have bikes for our secteur which is kind of shaped like a comb... There is a main street and then the teeth of the comb are more little streets that branch off the main one.. I can't see the ocean unless we ride to the top of the hill.
Sister Teinauri says it's the second smallest secteur in the mission, which is great because then I can hopefully get to know everybody in it.
It rains everyday for about 15 minutes to an hour and then is beautiful for the rest of the day! There are a lot of members here so, en fait, we are fed every night which is so so generous of the ward, alors... Je vais grossir :)
We are lucky too because we have a good amount of investigators who love to follow the lessons and keep inviting us back... The only hard thing is... We don't have tons of investigators keeping their commitments or can't get baptized yet because they have Word of Wisdom difficulties or are living in concubinage with children and their concubins don't want to get married yet. Un jour, nous èsperons. :)
We love our area.. It is a hard area, but we have so much hope and faith that the Lord is softening the hearts of His children and preparing them. En fait, yesterday, there was a grande miracle a la chapelle! We invited an investigator to come to church, Mami Micheline... And she came!! And in Relief Society, there was a lesson about genealogy and she said that she wants to start doing it to find out which island her family is from... Also, our ami, Maina, came to church with her children and her concubin, who is an inactive member, and stayed for all three hours and also other inactive members came with amis of their own... We still can't believe it... Heavenly Father is truly preparing His children to receive the gospel.
Also, we had a lesson with Franck. He is an old old man who is going deaf, is blind in one eye, and only speaks Tahitian, but he is so so so stinkin' cute. We had never sung a hymn with him before during a lesson but this past time we tried it... The cutest thing! Because he is going deaf and also because we had never sung with him before, the hymn ended up being a monotone chant with no rhythm and all in Tahitian. After we tried to teach him how to pray too but he didn't want to by himself, so we took turns saying a prayer, eaching saying things we were grateful for and then asking for blessings. Also the cutest thing ever... Hopefully he can understand some of what we teach him.
It's super funny because a lot of people here don't wear tons of clothing and sometimes you have to be careful when you drop in on the investigators to fix an appointment... You end up looking at the ceiling a lot.. Haha.
I want to bear my testimony of how important is missionary work. Without the gospel, without baptism, without the temple, we cannot live with God again. I would give anything to have all of my family living with God again. So I hope that through this work, members and missionaries alike, can bring their family and the families of others home again. I'm so grateful to be a missionary and I'm grateful that we have the opportunity to always be missionaries to those around us, at home and abroad.
XOXO Soeur Spackman
Sister Hayley Rae Spackman
Papeete Tahiti Mission