Thursday, March 23, 2017

Temaiku -The Land of Miracles Jan. 10, 2016

Whats up!!! That's so sick about Kipp no joke that kid is a G ahhahahaha! But I don't have much time so I’ll tell you about the miracle land called Temaiku. When I got there we had like 5 investigators that were ok and they were getting like 20ish lessons a week. I’m not trying to brag right now but this is to show how God will work through people if we just let him work through us. 6 weeks later: WE GOT 73 LESSONS THIS WEEK BABY WHOOOTTTT! It's like an all time record ever dang near. We have some of the sickest investigators.

So like this one family the mom and they dad we started teaching and I was only kinda hopeful for them because they were kinda interested and he was very heavy smoker. So we made a plan and he followed it, prayed for help, FASTED for help. So we go to him on Tuesday and we immediately notice he looks different... not sure what it is but like its a good different. Then he goes on to tell us how he is done smoking!!! He said he just doesn't want it anymore, like someone offered one to him and he just didn't want it. Then he said usually when he smelled smoke he loved the smell but he said he doesn't even like the smell. He has been going to church and we are just working on his marriage and he will be baptised.

We had 12 investigators at church this Sunday too. God is just throwing prepared people at us I feel like sometimes. Like just it's crazy!!! It's literally the land of miracles. Like this one lady we just found already knows it's true but her husband won't let her so we talked about Nephi 3:7 how God allows a way for us to accomplish and keep his commandments. AND we fasted with her yesterday and we are baptizing her daughter this Saturday but I know God will provide her a way to work it out. I would have to say the one frustrating thing is just people who know it's true who want the change and are so close but they just won't do that big action of stopping smoking or drinking or going to church. THAT’S ALL ITS TAKEs. like it's absolutely insane to see how just the gospel (not us) works a mighty change in people's hearts.

I’m honestly way glad to be where I am because it's just on fire right now. My next goal in a few weeks is to get 80 lessons. We will see how it goes but it's a goal in the next few weeks. Another miracle is this kid prayed about truthfulness and he had a dream we came to teach him and after we left two men in all white came and told him it was true. I can't understand how people can shut out miracles in today's time.

I love the quote from Joseph Smith when someone told him Mormons believe too much he said "yanno, (obviously Cody language injected here!)  I haven’t heard of people being damned for believing too much but I have heard of people being damned for not believing enough". IT's like people limit God's power when they don't believe he can work those miracles. We have a lot of people getting ready for baptism here soon, the fruit of the work the past 6 weeks I hope will be realized in the next 6 weeks. I'm literally living in a land of miracles. Also, I convinced my investigators to find me a sea turtle shell. Needless to say last night he had a tasty dinner and in a week I’m getting a sea turtle shell. I’m wondering if I should send it home in a package or just carry it for two years. Also, I got two packages WHOOT they are the ones in green sparkle tape with crocs and candy and medicine. I’m so grateful for the face wash my face feels so much cleaner. But just for you to know as for medicine and bandages of all kinds I can get from our nurse as well as sunscreen and soap. all those health products I just have so much I don't even use that if I leave I'll have to leave some behind anyways!! But the crocs are sweet!! And the candy. The nacho cheese doritos were incredibly unreal soooo tasty. Just a huge bag of those is all I need in my life. Lets see what else. My Kiribati homie Elder Kaakau who worked with us the part 3-4 weeks left to America today IN THE SAME MISSION AS JUSTIN MOORE WHAT!
But yeah the work is killer!!! I feel like I have a handle on the language. I start with my new companion tomorrow. He seems like a nice young man!!! On p day me and my friend play intense ping pong so I’m about to go do that. Transfers are fun because new elders come in or whatever. One of my homies from my intake came in from his outie because they were dying from lack of supplies or something so that was wayyyy fun seeing him. It was so crazy seeing my intake but it was the absolute best without a doubt!!! That is so fun about Kipp though and Sam sounds like his basketball is going good. How was Ella’s patriarchal blessing!!! They are real neat for sure!

Anyways gotta run love you all peace out till next week homies:)

Thursday, September 29, 2016

January 3, 2016 Happy New Year!

HAHAHA THAT'S SO CRAZY about Elder Stone!!! I totally know him I was there when he came in and it was the week elder Miller got a surgery done so we visited him in the hospital when we went 2-3 times!!! It is a small world indeed! I heard he is back and working with one of my intake homies now Elder Kitchens. He's a sweet dude though for real. I had no idea he is Tongan, he is very much white ahahaha.  (A member from Elder Stone’s ward was visiting my ward and we figured they were on the same island with Cody.  Elder Stone had to come back to the states for a cut that got infected.  He had to have a  skin graft on his leg that got ...bad.  They either couldn’t treat it properly and it got bad, the environment is so dirty it wouldn’t heal just got so bad he just had to come back. )

New Year's was fun! More frustrating honestly because everyone goes to parties and no one wanted to take lessons but what are you going to expect. There was a huge party all the missionaries went to in Eita for the Stake... but every time we go to those we get dropped off last way late, mostly bc people don't leave when they are supposed to and we have to catch a ride so we just went to a party with members. It's kinda funny because they bring out these HUGE speakers, put it like 3 inches from our faces and blast music and they did this thing where one person dances and they pass it to the next, and EVERYONE kept giving it back to us which was tiring. It's because at our Christmas party us and the 2 other Elders from Temwaiku danced and like 3 white boys and one Fiji guy. White kids were just doing whatever then Elder Vulavula just starts break dancing going CRAZY insane like that boy can DANCE it was so funny everyone went CRAZY. It was a good time.

It was way sweet yesterday 8 of our people went to church!!! It's so frustrating though when these people are so sick in lessons but no show at church. This one family is sooooo killer. Like so 3 of their kids have already been baptised and we started with the parents and last kid and they just soak in the lessons like in priesthood they taught about the priesthood and he like meekly was like "how do i get it if i haven't been baptised" and in our lesson about temples the dad got so pumped like "we are going to go to church every Sunday and always pray and read so our family can go there" Sweet stuff like that.

Pictures of Figi temple


What else one guy we found out his kid died as a baby so it was a beautiful thing to teach him eternal truths about how he can meet with his family after this life and that his child isn't lost and yada yada yada. it's basically like that with all of our people. One lady we just started was way hardcore in Protestant but now she saw how she needs the gospel with her family so like she's sooo prepared had a sick lesson with her too.

(ok...these first two videos are super good...but I don't know how to get them highlighted...maybe you copy and paste it on the google line?>?)

Indianapolis IN, Louisville, KY, St. Louis, MO, Nashville, TN, Chicago, IL, and Philadelphia, PA temples




OH and we found out transfers. I’m staying in Temwaiku AND IM TRAINING AGAIN WHOOT.... I’m excited and I’m not. Like I’m exciting because it's fun training kinda except I was looking forward to not teaching EVERYTHING, but thats whats best for me so I’m excited. His name is Elder Hillard from Utah. He went to one of the sickest outies for 4 days and died, emergency came back in and didn't eat anything but juice and vitamins for a month ahahahahaha I’m way excited though he seems like a sweet guy. I just feel bad I don't feel qualified to teach people how to speak when my own speaking is flawed, even if I can honestly communicate and understand most everything sometimes I still get lost.

But what I can give him is the important stuff, how to work hard how to do the action work of it praying yada yada, I’m not the best speaker or teacher but I hope I can give him and start him on the way that he can know how important the extra mile is or yada yada. Not that I’m good at it but I know that I always strive for it at least.

ALSO VERY IMPORTANT THERE ARE THINGS I NEED CRUCIAL TO MY SUCCESS IN LIFE; CTR wristbands I can give out, like to help people remember to keep  commandments of whatever (someone gave me one and I gave it to one of my kids who is trying to stop smoking and it way helps him remember, he said once he was about to smoke but he saw the wristband, and then he took off his wristband before he smoked but I’m glad he gets the idea hahahaha) a good multi tool with lots of tools, a large knife for just I can carry, a new journal, smallish pictures of the temple I can give out, and I think that's it.


I'll have you know I always think about you and what you would be proud of me for doing in almost all situations, it's very helpful in decision making because I know you always would want me to do a little more, or whatever else!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY MAMA! But yup same old same old here, work hard and we don't play very much but it's all good it's rewarding work and I love it!!

December 27, 2017 Moving on...the Lord's work continues



Hi mom! (Answering my question about back and forth emailing) No I haven't heard it's against the rules. It doesn't say that anywhere, I could ask but the answer would be "do what you think the Spirit wants you to do." For me, I don't see any problem because the reason it's against the rules for them (meaning our mission here in Louisville Kentucky mission) is probably the mission president doesn't want them to get unfocused on the work, and I don't have too much of a problem with being distracted because go go go and I don't have any separation issues:) So don't worry it's allowed if we email back and forth, if it wasn't I would tell you because really I can't afford to be disobedient in the slightest yanno what I mean-- not worth it!

So this week was fun because we broke 50 lessons! Which is crazy seeing we only worked 4 1/2ish days due to Christmas and the day after Christmas our Christmas party and baptism! But other than that it was a pretty average week! It was fun talking to you guys and Christmas was fun too!!!!
I sent a big email about whatever else in the week to dad, but I told him my request for a waterproof backpack so my stuff doesn't get soaked in my bag when it pours. And boy did it pour yesterday, all day. I was actually freezing cold for the first time in a long time it was an interesting experience. And I was looking and 2-3 more pants and white shirts would be awesome as well and another belt! No hurry but at some point it'd be nice:)

One cool thing the Kiribati elder who is working with us right now is actually serving in New Mexico.. THE SAME MISSION AS JUSTIN MOORE. I KNOW!!! It's actually way cool I just emailed him about it so we will see if it pans out to be the same or what but it's fun!

Well I’ma going to bounce.  love yall I find out transfers on Wednesday so that's fun.  I'll letcha know peace out!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Christmas Day Skype!

Christmas Day was exciting since today was the day we could skype Elder Kennedy.
He went to the church run Moroni High School.  It is a dormitory school for all the islands to send their child for schooling.  They go home for summers and breaks as you have or will read.

He looks good.  He sounds good.  He is happy and when we finished talking we were all good.  I thought the kids might be a bit quiet but nope!  The banter is alive and well.  Although, it was really apparent that he isn't interested in media and social stuff that our family talked about.  The more an Elder focuses on the gospel he doesn't really care about it too much.  Although, Cody does have great listening and conversation skills I could tell it wasn't the same.

One thing we noticed is Cody's rice belly.  If you know Cody he is very lean, muscular yet lean.  He said that he had a rice belly earlier and I couldn't believe it but even through Skype I could see it is TRUE!!!! So so very weird!!!!!  I figure he will probably need it when he goes to an island that runs out of food for 8 days. (true story- they flew some missionaries back into Tarawa for a while since the island ran out of food.)

His arms look pretty strong so I asked him what work out does he do every day.  He said they find the heaviest rock they can find and lift it.  Haaaaahhahahahaha!

Since it is now ..May 18, 2016 I can't remember much more about our conversation.  We love him and don't really miss that much.  Oh, there are plenty of times when I watch a movie and it's a goodbye scene and I start to cry but other than that we are very accepting of what he is doing and how long he will be doing it.  I am not counting the months down until he returns.  I want him to keep developing himself and his testimony.  He should never come home!!! I talked with his friend who recently came home from a mission and he told me "that is a typical response for a mom at this point of a mission.  When it gets to three month until he returns you will definitely be anxious for him to be home NOW!" I'll remember this advice.  As of Christmas, Elder Kennedy is doing great! Thank you all for emailing him or keeping him in your prayers or even asking me about him.  When you do, it helps keep him near to me.  So thank you.

And now for you entertainment!!! These are Cody's last pictures from a flashdrive he had sent home in January 2016.  So from now on you will have to use your imagination with his letters.  He is on the island of Nonouti and I don't think he will be able to send anything for a couple of months....I could be wrong.  But for now...enjoy!

Christmas pancakes

Christmas ties from Elder Johnson's family

 Following pictures I assume are a photo op for Christmas cards...I think he only uses his camera on preparation days.

 Tarawa Christmas Party 2015

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Dr. Kennedy's prescription: Positivity, positivity. Positivity! December 20, 2015

Dang (waiting for) Santa for 3 hours? I can only imagine how many times the kids went to buy candy from that store hahahhaha! Let's see what else cool happened?

This past Tuesday we were going out and this person ran out and was like "we need a blessing ASAP" we like run through this swamp and on this booya this little girl who we know who is so nice and sweet is having this seizure so we give here a blessing and she goes on for like an hour we help these people try to care for her until the ambulance comes and we carry her in the ambulance (which turned out to be a bus apparently the ambulance was busy so they called a bus) so we climb in and bring her to the hospital and I totally had a moment like dad where his friend in band had a seizure and he wanted to be a doctor, then like as I had that experience I thought about how I wouldn't mind being a doctor too!

The hospital was a mess. I don't even know much and it was the most unsanitary thing I've ever seen. so they pull this sweaty just-dying lady off her cot which is still wet from her drool and everything.  We put the girl on it and after that they start taking blood.  No gloves and as the nurse is squeezing in the stuff she double checks it's the right one. Then she had me help her draw the blood, like I held the tubes and I dropped one of the caps on the ground. She picked it up, looked at it, put it back on. Just like the most unsanitary unsafe environment ever. So that was a different experience this week.

(Responding about how long a package takes to get there)
I think it only takes a month or more to get it. I bet if you just sent it I’ll get it towards the end of Feb. My companion got a HUGE christmas package it was actually insane (not saying I need a huge Christmas package to feel loved or anything I don't need much and if you do a flashlight and food pls)
Hahahaha which ones did he send. He really wants to send pics home it just takes a long time and is really inconvenient so I don't but I told him to send all the ones he sends home to you guys too:)

IT'S SO GREAT MY FEET ARE AWESOME IM IAON KAWAINA IBUKIN BAINA KIRIBTi.   I’m on my way to Kiribati feet) they look bad because I have HUGE calluses all over my feet, which are the most useful things ever like I can pretty much throw my foot at a door and feel nothing:) It was sick sometimes like I'll need something so like I can walk decently comfortably on most any terrain!! I really want Kiribati feet because they seem so handy for all terrain events! My companion says I look wayyyyy different from when I was in MTC, from pictures, idk about it. I have a lot of acne now so that's the change for me, and I have a little rice belly. It’s really funny everyone gets these rice bellies where it's just a little fat patch on the tummy. right on the lip of the tummy it's funny. and don't worry I work out every morning. It's a nice motivation because like you have to work out every morning if you want to be exactly obedient so it's a motivating factor.

Gross- I know!
And as for about everything being easy, like there are a ton of hard things, but like I don't dwell on anything bad that happens or is frustrating. If I keep my mind positive and don't see the struggles ever then how much better is life!!!

If you want to know hard things I could identify tons but like everything hard about Kiribati I absolutely love. Like one hard part about the work would be people nako nako n tai nako. (leave all the time). Like because everyone just always chills if they hear about a party or just feel like going somewhere they just go because like nothing matters and a lot of lessons fall through every day so it's just a process of planning for it I suppose. It's not that bad though I like it. 

OH HERE'S A HARD THING THIS WEEK. So I had my first interaction with a boil this week. Right on my bum. very much extremely painful n tai nako (all the time) and I couldn't sit on my left side for a few days while I treated it (I exploded it and you just squeeze out the juice until you dig out the seed) so that was kinda hard! Kinda funny though because like it’s a normal conversation to talk about stuff like that so people thought it was so funny by the way I was sitting. 

But no, I don't have any real challenges because nothing really bothers me. Like my only problem is myself and my human weaknesses. Isn't how it is for everyone though like external influences affect you but you choose how to respond. That's a skill I've really began to developed like in really intense situations we have had I can take control of myself pretty easily I feel like idk maybe I’m cocky which is something I’m working on anyways! I just don't think I have any problems I love all the crazy things about this place! To me I have no problems. Like I’m not a good enough teacher or language or good enough anything but like as I continue to push forward and progress while relying on the Lord, if I’m doing everything I can and try to change constantly I have faith the Lord will make up what I lack after I give everything I got first yanno! Life is good! too good! I’m living in the calm before the storm probably. And like I know for fact I’m living in the calm before the storm so all I can do now is enjoy it and prepare for anything the Lord sees fit to deal me right! All challenges are in the Lord's hands for my benefit so with that attitude in mind it's all good!
So it's been an interesting week. Once again we have the best neighbors ever. This huge super strong Mormon family last p day we went and hung out with them and learned a dance for the ward christmas party this Saturday 

(AND BEFORE I FORGET SO WE SKYPE ON CHRISTMAS DAY(like your guys’ Christmas the day after Christmas for me) AND SINCE ELDER MILLER IS ZONE LEADER NOW HE HOOKED ME UP I GET TO GO FIRST SO EXPECT A CALL ON SKYPE AT 12 O'CLOCK IN UTAH time) Whatever time that is in Indiana idk. Yeah I'll catch y'all. If you guys have a different plan or something email me and I can probably change my time with someone for later or whatever but yeah. Later in the week just email me the skype name and I'll hitcha all up)) (

ALSO BEFORE I FORGET) So like the best thing ever is hearing about the people I left in Bikenibeu that I didn't get to finish are all getting finished up now and like everything is just like exploded since we left. Like so our neighbor in Bikenibeu is this YSA girl who just got baptized 8 months ago SOOOO SOLID! She did member lessons alllll the time she was our homie but like once we left she didn't want to let all the good things that were happening in Bikenibeu die so she like full on took all of the investigators we left hardcore under her wing. Brought all them to their family home evening, brings them all to activities, just like our YSA completely enveloped 4-5 of my favorite people and like now they are just killin it.  Two girls we taught, Veronica and Pre Tinta, just got baptized on Saturday and apparently they are just killing it so strong. Like they are they ones who live in the Kiribati casino they are 18 ish and they just stopped doing all bad things and just so good now. Its funny me and Miller wrote our names on the wall of their house, it's a Kiribati thing. And then our other killer convert we baptized Tammara is way helpful with our guy Tipi, who is getting baptized in a week.  Tipi is this like Lebron sized 19 year old. The kid is MASSIVE just huge and jacked in all ways, but he's way funny. Lots of good things are happening in Bikenibeu. It's amazing how the lord works because like it was the perfect time for us to leave because it made the ward work and the work got stronger as they acted to bring in people. So cool. The elders there now are way solid too, our old people are in good hands.
But anyways, about Temwaiku!!! So it was honestly like a just slow kinda hard week, it rained a ton and just no one was ever home, but it was a super good week nonetheless. Like I can't really say it was a hard week, it just seemed, like trudging through mud kinda idk how to explain it. We got another visa waiter!!! Elder Kaakau is working with us now soooo SPLITS EVERYDAY!!! We met a kid who had a dream that Jesus called him to be a prophet. He is like 100% with all his heart believes it and it's crazy because like the dream is patterned exactly after the Restoration, Satan is one tricky son of a gun. But yeah so Elder Johnson and Kaakau went to teach him yesterday and apparently like a ton of people were there and when they sat down both got a crazy prompting to leave now and not go back so they left so i missed that:/ BBBUUUTTT. Let's see.

We are marrying like 6 couples who are all wayyyy fun and super solid. This one couple we are teaching are soooo funny we are way buds with them plus they are our neighbors so I see them all the time. IT's so fun like I can have conversations and actually do things now it's so sick like I actually just can communicate I love it. BUT what else. I’m pumped about these people we started yesterday. So we have been teaching this super super sweet 14 year old girl and we meet her parents and turns out they are less actives so we taught them and they are way on board to get reactivated they just needed someone to reach out and they are SO funny. So like I’m excited to see but I hope that we baptize the daughter, get the parents reactivated, and then one by one pick at the 3 other kids til the family is complete:) long term goals. WE went on exchanges with Elders on Wednesday so that was fun. Heartbreak of the week: So two of my favorite investigators Korieta and Katiotio they are somehow in the same family idk the relation Katiotio is 25 with a baby and wife and Korieta is 13 and way a stunner. BUT so we went to teach them like every lesson has been so powerful because they are both so prepared. Like first lesson Katiotio said" I've been Catholic but I want to try Mormon because in Catholic there is no change and you guys promise me change in my life se we will see" SO good just like asks great questions and it’s sweet. ANYWAYS. but so we go to teach them and their Dad runs out starts yelling how we can never come back stop teaching his family yada yada yada idk. So we don't know if we can teach Korieata which is way sad but Katiotio is over 18 so we teach him at a different house. For a few days I thought we lost them though. But we bumped into both of them and they were both so ticked we stopped coming and like begged us to start lessons again and all that. SO PUMPED.

What else. It rained BUCKETS this week, which slowed the work down a ton because when it rains the entire country shuts down and like sleeps or whatever. BUT I wore my black rain jacket we got and I thought about when you and I bought it,  it was SUCH a good decision.  No joke that thing saved my life. Also I need a new watch. It doesn't matter what it looks like just waterproof. No hurry though just next time you send a package. No hurry really though.

First stop in new area....dig a well.

What else. I’m an expert well maintenance person now. I’ve dug a well, cleaned a well, all things well maintenance I’m pretty good at. Also I help some members cook this thing and like when you do it fire shoots everywhere it was so neat. It was a good week over all for sure. After sacrament we were informed we are teaching the youth class and young men, so we (by we I mean I) whipped together a lesson in like 5 minutes it was a crazy time but fun.

I can't believe the Star Wars movie came out!! So crazy! Thats sick that its awesome. N te bong teyana (one day).
I was thinking a fun thought yesterday. So like why is it a commandment to have a lot of babies?  And the answer:  God wants people to be born in the covenant and everyone wants to be born into the church and such, but there are only so many slots based on how many babies Mormon people have. So the more babies, the more slots open up for people born into the covenant and the more spirits born into the gospel and the more the church grow when all those people have babies and just slots open up everywhere!!!

Also I have not burned since I got here:) not once! Fine-- one day like two weeks ago I got my first burn aka I was like a little pink. It wasn't even bad. But I'll start wearing sunscreen better for you.
Yeah like 45 minutes! Yeah I’m so happy about Bikenibeu.  I  always ask about our old people. I’m so jealous they get to see them finished. Like with Pretinta the first lesson she had this total bad girl like thought it was all so funny that they were listening and yada yada and like as it went she TOTALLY changed and they said now they just are like bouncing off the walls happy all the time it's very neat.

Responses to questions:
Yeah, that's what we did with the dude.  We just told him if he wants to know, act. But idk what his intentions are anymore honestly, like we taught him a couple of days ago and now he says he knows God is real and he prays a lot. We aren't sure his true intentions but I think he is testing the valor of the church through us idk. We will see.
It was the funniest thing, we got a ride from ZLs (zone leaders)and stopped by Bikenibeu and saw the mom of our neighbors she got so hyped!  Like this lady is a SAINT so so nice and good to us, like so good to so many youth for real a great example to all of them. But I saw her and she got so pumped and ran out to the car and it was so cool because like we actually talked in Kiribati.  The whole time I  was there I would just give them a dead confused stare  when we tried to talk because I would get so lost due to language, but I could totally communicate with her now it was awesome!  Hahaha.

Oh yeah and I think I misplaced the flashlight so if you send a package someday no hurry but my requests: a flashlight, a watch, and .38 G2 blue red purple pens. All colors expected except for black or ugly colors. probably mostly red blue purple nice colors. Make sure the G2 pen that writes thin .38 or point 05 works too honestly.
One funny thing that's been happening is Elder Johnson got a TON of little dollar item little tiny trinkets for kids and he's  been the Kiribati Santa Claus kids legit flock to us everywhere looking for toys. It's a little out of hand but it's pretty funny and a fun Christmas thing.


Elder ? and  Elder Johnson

Elder Kennedy and Elder Johnson