Sunday, July 21, 2013

USS Pearl Harbor

Waiting in line
The island has been blessed to have the USS Pearl Harbor Humanitarian ship here this past week.  It anchored about a mile off shore and is using a transport to bring the sailors in each day.  They set up a medical clinic in Bariki to teach the people and provide a few services and goods. There were vets who provided information about diseases animals can get and carry, and they treated their dogs and pigs for worms and provided neutering services. There was also an ophthalmologist to check eyes as needed.  They gave out sunglasses to all and reading glasses to those older than 45 years.  They also had instruction on diet, diabetes, exercise, and washing their hands before preparing food and checked their blood pressure.  We were blessed to be able to hand out hygiene kits from LDS Charities to all of those who came through.  Although we were only there for one morning, the clinic lasted for four days with a constant line and many were turned away.  We enjoyed visiting with the officers and enlisted personnel who were there to help.  They were so pleased that the people wanted to learn how to better their lives.  The experience they’ve had in other islands is that the people just want the freebies but weren’t interested in learning.  One female soldier said she had never been to a place so hot and poor.   It was the spiritual uplift we needed for the week.  My heart was touched to see all of the good that was taking place.
Sister Tune translating

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Relief Society Stake Activity

June 23, 2013,
We have received our first transfer.  The only thing that has changed is that we have been assigned to attend a different ward, Eita 2nd.  It is also held here on campus and meets at 12:00.  I really liked out 8:00 meetings however they made the afternoons very long. The new meeting time will break up the day some but it will be much warmer that time of day.  Today after our three hour block we went to their Sacrament meeting just to introduce ourselves.  Of course the meeting is all in Kiribati which will be a challenge.  Hopefully we can sit by the missionaries or return missionaries to translate for us.  It must be time for more growth as we are starting to settle in and get the hang of our calling.  Just never enough time to get it all done.  We started the new class this week, Reading in the Content Area.  I think it went well.  Yesterday we had a Stake Relief Society activity where they had the Senior Sisters speak for a few minutes and then we broke into four workshop groups.  Sister Talitaina, the senior sister from Somoa spoke about Physical, Spiritual, Mental, and Social health.  She had the sisters exercising in place till we were all out of breath. 

She is very bold and is taking the direction to “Go to the rescue” seriously.  When her and Sister Ucunibarvi (from Fiji) went to visit one family, the dad was asleep.  She poked him and told him he needed to get up and get back to church, and he did.  These two sisters have only been here a month and they have several families returning to church. Not only are they bold but they are older (our age) and they are islanders, so the saints are responded.  The sisters also brought clothing they didn't want any more and it was spread out on the floor for other sisters to take.  It was all gone within minutes. 

We were asked to teach one of the rotations, on indexing.  The saints have never heard of it here.  For those that speak English and could get access to a computer and the internet it would be a great way to participate in Family History.  We had to use a translator in each group which was also a new experience.  I really couldn’t quite figure out why they wanted us to teach something that they have so little resources to do but when we went to the Eita 2nd ward today, two families came up to us and asked us if we could help them really learn how.  One couple will be going to the Fiji temple next month and they want to take some of their own family names with them.  The Lord works in mysterious ways.  Maybe this is one reason for our transfer.  We’ll have to find someone who can help us with the language though.