March 30, 2015

Baptisms and Becoming

Baptism of Timiona
Baptism of Hiro
Baptism of Marciano
Members do the missionary work, not the missionaries. We teach. The investigators that have members there for lessons, to invite to activities, to sit with them at church. Members we need you!

Thank you for your prayers of faith and fasting and your efforts in sharing the gospel. Even asking people if they are interested helps to hasten the work. Let's keep opening our mouths and offering the good message of the gospel, and as we hasten the Lord's work in the world, He hastens His work in us. We become more faithful, more converted, and more like Him. We become His.

Soeur Spackman


Sometimes Mom and Dad, I miss you a lot. I miss being able to talk to you everyday about the little things that happen, times of weakness, times of overcoming temptation and submitting to Heavenly Father and His will, times of feeling purely Christlike through my words and actions. And I've learned it's okay to miss you, you're my best friends, and it's only natural that I want to share everything with you. And sometimes Mom and Dad, it's okay to miss me too. We both know that our faith and dependence on Jesus Christ and His Atonement is increasing as we are far apart. And we know that all of this is for our learning.

I love you Mom and Dad and I miss you. Sending a big, silky soft, "I'm glued" squeeze your way!

March 16, 2015

Hearts and MIracles

My mom asked me today why missionaries talk so much about miracles. I hadn't ever really thought about it before, but it's true, when missionaries write home, we write about miracles. I don't know if this is a conscious action or if it naturally happens because we are surrounded by so many each day.

When we talk about miracles, however, they are rarely grand acts that most people associate with the word miracle. For us, in all simplicity, a miracle is a change of heart.

This week, we saw a miracle in Keanu, our 15 year old young man who has been following the lessons for about six months. He told us that he prayed during school when he had a problem with his teachers and was disrespectful. He then said he was going to apologize... Can you see the miracle?... Six months ago, he didn't know how to pray, but this week, he not only said the words, but he prayed in faith to Heavenly Father for help.... He also opened up during the lesson and asked for advice on how he can better express his feelings and concerns to his parents. Later, during the closing prayer, he prayed for the courage to talk to his parents... Can you see the miracle?

Or we could tell you about Clarissa (name changed), a single mother of three children, who lived a rough life for many years with an abusive husband. She lives in a "home of welcoming" that belongs to a member in our secteur. The member set up a lesson with the missionaries and on March 28, Clarissa is going to be baptized because she has seen that a life with Jesus Christ at the center is a life of peace and happiness and she wants that life.

The least often recounted miracles, however, are those that missionaries experience within themselves.

It's not easy spending 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with a companion, but as missionaries, that is something we accept to do as part of our call. As you can imagine, habits and behaviors start to grate on nerves and tension can build. For a few weeks, I have the opportunity to spend almost all hours of every day with three companions. For the most part, it's a lot of fun and life is joyful. There are only some hard moments when I (pridefully stubborn and stubbornly prideful) want to do things my way, or not do them at all. This impedes the Spirit and the work does not progress forward... This week, I've felt the Lord working in my heart, to make it meek and lowly. It's hard and oh boy, does my pride put up a fight, but I am so grateful as He breaks it down, because as my nature is being changed to be more like Him, we are then able to go help others change their lives, through Him.

I would like to bear my testimony of the miracle of missionary work. Heavenly Father's hand works in the life of each one of His children, if we only could see how much. He loves His children and because He loves us, He gave His Son to die for us, so that through Him, we might live again. And it's possible for all of us, so let's let the Lord work mighty miracles in us. Today.

March 9, 2015

Missionary Work is the Lord's Work

This week has been absolutely great! Our investigators are making progress and the members are participating more in missionary work. Heavenly Father is blessing the secteur of Pirae 2!

The great miracle of the week is that we had 6 investigators at church yesterday... That is the first time in my entire mission! We are seeing families come together in the gospel and single mothers are finding spiritual stability for themselves and their children. We loved a lesson the other day with Claire, who was awestruck by the fact that we have a prophet on Earth. Today! And that he lives and that he leads and guides us to follow Jesus Christ. I love when people accept and love the truth. Their countenance changes and the light of Christ within them grows brighter.

Keanu and Makeli and Hiro are all making progress as well. I love teaching these young boys. They have sincere desires to keep the commandments and learn the gospel. The other day Makeli said a prayer, asking for help to stop drinking coffee, smoking cigarettes and drugs. It was cute because he doesn't smoke cigarettes or drugs... Haha. But now he has help in denying those things when the temptation is given.

We also contacted Papi Barff, an inactive, recent convert, who is the cutest old man. I don't know why I love old men so much... I blame it on my Grandpa Darwin... Anyways, Papi and I are comrades in arms now. He is teaching me how to correctly pronounce Tahitian words through reading the Book of Mormon.

Another happy thing in my missionary life is the missionary couple, Elder and Sister Jones. They are from the Great Britain and I have to be careful or I try to copy their cheerio, quite proper British accents with their ''Hello, my ducks'' and cheeky jokes. (If you want to imagine Elder Jones, it's Mike Letts with an English accent...) I rather enjoy them.

Missionary Work is the Lord's Work, therefore, it is the Best Work! Let us all take part.

Soeur Spackman

March 2, 2015

Sharing Faith

First, I just want to say thank you to all for your prayers. Miracles happen in missionary work each day because of heartfelt, mighty prayers of faith.

We were able to teach Hiro and Tihoni again this week (they are the cutest). In one of the lessons they asked if we could buy them scriptures and a hymnbook so they can participate at church. Our grand miracle of the week was in teaching their mother, Tetua. She came to the visitor's center to watch a presentation on the plan of salvation, and to meet the missionaries who are teaching her sons. The presentation covers a lot of information, but at the end, we testified that all we wanted her to take away was that she is a daughter of God and that because He loves her, He gave her beautiful children and a chance to learn the gospel. We then committed her to be baptized and she said yes, because she knows that all this (meaning what the church teaches) is true.

Please pray for her. She isn't able to come to church for the moment because she works and she is also a single mother. But we know that the Lord will help her and she will be able to find a way to provide for her family and give herself to the gospel.

We were also able to commit Timiona and Romina to baptism this week and they accepted! Romina is the mother of Keanu and Makuli and the big sister of Oceane (young men and a young woman we have been teaching for a few months). We are praying that with the example of Romina, the others will come to church and desire to change and be baptized.

Another highlight of the week was today during a zone activity. We were playing beach ultimate frisbee when it started to rain so we ran for cover in a pavilion. There were already some people there, two among them some Papis (grandpas). We started talking to them because twenty something missionaries had just bombarded their ballad with their friends. They had a lot of questions. One of them, a non-practicing Catholic, down-to-earth, take-care-of-the-planet Frenchman was really interested in the differences between our church and the Catholic church. He was impressed by the moral standard that youth are taught to live and that we sacrifice eighteen to twenty-four months to serve others and the Lord. It turned into almost a two hour conversation and at the end, he wasn't interested to start following the lessons, but I hope a seed was planted and that it was an uplifting experience for him as it was for me.

Heavenly Father is working in the lives of His children. He knows what has happened in our lives and He knows what He's about to do. May we all trust His will and His timing.

Soeur Spackman.