Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Becoming More Organized... We Hope!

I have been having a really good week this week. Here is a little about it.

So this Sunday was our ward conference for the Teaoraereke 2nd Ward.  I honestly love this ward so much.  I worked here when I came in from Tabiteuea to wait for Elder Pratt and now I am starting my 4th transfer here and I still love it.  We are working on trying to split the ward by the end of the year.  We had about 250 people at church on Sunday and we had about 30 Melchizedek Priesthood holders with 16 or 17 potential Melchizedek Priesthood holders.  So that was way sick.  We are really working with the list of people in the ward to try and fix all the stuff that is messed up.  I just want to help this ward split so much.  It would help tons of stuff I think.  We had 10 investigators show up as well to church so that was awesome!  One of the issues all the time here is with divorce.  We have 2 super solid couples but they can't get married because of marriages before with other people.  Many people move from island to island and without internet it’s hard to find the spouse so they can get divorces.   But we keep working on it.

Nei Natia is doing really good! She is doing well and they should be getting married and she should get baptized in a couple weeks.  Her husband has just been having a hard time with drinking.  She keeps saying she is feeling the church is true, but she has a hard time thinking about joining it when her husband (long time member) keeps drinking.  Yesterday we talked to him about it so let’s hope he is going to get that figured out.

Tematang (a lady that got baptized a couple weeks ago) just had her baby we think.  We haven't seen her yet but we are excited to see the new baby.  We have this couple Tourakai and Renute that we have been teaching and they both came to church on Sunday!  He came a couple Sundays ago but this is their first time as a couple.  It seems like they really liked it.  We gave them an old gospel art book and they hung up a ton of pictures all around their house so that was cool.  She
(Renute) has been doing a preschool at her house and I have been giving them a bunch of random stuff (stickers’ etc.) that you guys have been sending to help with their preschool so that is pretty fun.

You said Tia and Ryan are having a baby?  That is way sweet!  Honestly the joy of having family is better than anything I feel like in the world.  In God's plan that is also very important so that all his children can come down to the earth.

You asked about some of the people here.  Well, the people here in Kiribati have seen like cows, but only in movies. I think most of the time when people see animals or other things they just see movies where they are in.  I know here in Tarawa and a couple other places people can access the internet, but most people only do so for email or facebook.

Thanks for sending the talk that Dr. Riddle gave. I honestly have always wanted in life to have enough money that I don't have to worry.  But I feel like I will try and have it for righteous desires such as taking care of my family and helping people and the church and stuff.  But I completely agree with what he said.  One thing that is crazy but true is that as we teach these people in Kiribati, it seems like they just become wealthier over time.  As they focus on the needs of their families it seems like they just grow in many different ways.

One thing that I have noticed about myself is that I have been getting a lot more organized out here on my mission.  I have been really clean throughout most of my mission but organization is something I am just working on. So that should help me later in life. I think anyone could live in a stick hut here in Kiribati, but it is really hot.

I just love being a missionary.  I am so glad to be out here serving the Lord. I have 3 SD cards full of pictures that I am pretty sure you guys haven't seen yet so I will think about sending them home with the Jenks as they come home in like 6 weeks.

Yeah pretty much things are just way sweet out here. No problems or anything, just trying to do all I can to help establish the church. 

I hope you all have an awesome week!

Elder Dinsdale

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Remember the Lord in all you do.

Things are going really good here.  I have had another great week!!  Transfers did come and they will start next week but I am not being transferred.  So it looks like I will be here probably till the end of April or the beginning of May.  My companion is named Elder Benjamin Bonney.  He is from Maryland but goes to school at the U of U. His family moves around a bunch so he has lived in Europe, Africa, and random places in the states. His dad is in the military.  He has 14 kids in his family and he is the 4th oldest. 2 of them are adopted from Africa and there are 2 sets of twins.  He has been out a little over a year now.  When I flew in from Kiritimati Island they flew in from America.  So they are exactly 6 months after me. He is chill so that is good.

This week we have been working with families and that is the best. Nothing is better than seeing a family that used to be angry all the time or they just don't have a good feeling about them, to seeing them just be super happy and to just have a good feeling when you walk into their house.

This last week for service we made a sandbox for this family.   The house that we made it at does a preschool type thing that they do for kids in the community that can't pay for people to go to preschool.  So that was fun for the kids.

Another great thing that happened this week is we have been teaching a girl named Natia.  Her husband is a less active RM.  They are going to be married soon and she will be baptized the week after that!!  This week we have been teaching her the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  She really just understood faith and repentance and is just doing really well.  She was talking about how she went to another village one day and came back and everyone at the house was mad at her because she was supposed to have prepared food for everyone while the rest of them had been out working or at school and stuff.  She said when they were all mad and such she said the Holy Ghost just told her that she should apologize to them.  So instead of getting angry back or something else she just apologized.  Then when we taught repentance and we talked about apologizing to people and confessing our sins to people we have sinned against and confessing our sins to our Heavenly Father she said she felt the Holy Ghost was helping her do that.   That isn't that big of a story but I thought it was pretty cool.  She said before she always just felt like a bad person and she felt like she had no real good thing that was going on in here life, but now she feel like there are so many good things that go on and she is feeling a lot better about life.  Honestly this Gospel changes people.  Our investigator Rubi came to church this Sunday for the first time.  He stood up and talked about how he had gone to school to become a Catholic Father for 2 years until he got together with his wife, but he said he is happy to be at church.  So that is pretty sweet!!

You asked if I had a funny story for the week.  I am not sure. Lots of funny stuff happens but I don't ever really remember.

Many people are just doing so well in this gospel.  Lots of people coming into the waters of baptism and lots are working towards it.   Missionary work is really good.

 I hope you guys have an amazing week, keep remembering the Lord in all the things you do.

Elder Dinsdale
 Zone Conference:  Tarawa

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Another great week!!!

Things are going really good this week in Kiribati! Here are the highlights. 

Last night we taught a lesson with a guy.  We also had a member bring the guys wife to the lesson.  It was sweet because his wife didn’t want to have lessons but decided to come.  Most people that say they aren't too interested in lessons but if they come and continue to learn they realize how blessed they can be from this gospel and things go really good for them.  So, I am pretty excited.

We have 2 couples that we have been teaching let us know how much different they feel having lessons and praying and reading scriptures and going to church then they did before in their old religions. One of those couples would always tell us they were not ready to come to church, but on Saturday after we asked them again they said they were ready to go since they had been feeling so much happier now than they were before. The wife got sick and didn't come but the husband came so we were super happy about that. So many people here are getting testimonies from their Father in Heaven and I am just super excited about it!

We have a guy that moved into our ward from Eita 2nd ward and he has been helping us missionaries a ton. He is constantly fellow shipping people and helping us out in any way we need. Last night we had dinner with him and his wife and one of their kids and you could just tell they were a super happy family. Neither of them have jobs.  They just make money by selling random stuff but even though they were poor, you could just tell they were so happy. He just got baptized a couple years ago in 2012.  Before that he said that he was a drunk and just lived a crappy life. But now he is so happy in the gospel.

People are so much happier and less angry or frustrated living the gospel of Jesus Christ. I am so glad that I can be a part of helping people receive those feelings.

You asked me about my feelings on Grace.... What I know is that people can be doing horrible things in life or make mistakes like all of us do and when we decide to change and turn to our Savior (even though we don't deserve to be let back into his fold) it is through the grace of Christ He will always welcome us back into his fold.  We just need to repent and turn to him with all our hearts, no matter how bad we were before.

Things are going great here. We have a family home evening tonight with our Bishops family and one of the families we are teaching are coming to it so I am pretty excited for that!

Keep having fun in life and always remember the Lord and all the many blessings He has blessed you with. I hope you have a great week back at home.
Love you!
Elder Dinsdale

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

You don't need a lot of stuff here to be happy!


Thanks for the email.  It was good to hear that Carrington (Scott’s companion that has since returned home) still wants to be an islander.  He is a good man. I really loved working with him out here.  It was good advice to let him know to bring food though.  That is always helpful on the outer islands. 

I appreciated the message you shared with me from your ward conference on sacrifice and if we value ourselves by the stuff we acquire.  One thing I have noticed in Kiribati is that you really don't need stuff to live. I have lived for months with just 1 plate, 1 spoon, 1 cup, 1 pan, and 1 grass mat to sleep on. Honestly though you can have a great life with very little stuff. The other thing I have noticed here in Kiribati though is how much good you can do if you do have a lot of stuff. There are so many people you can help and support if you use stuff wisely. God gives us stuff for a reason, so we can do good things with it. If you gain money or possessions for other reasons than to do good then we are not using the things God gives us in the way that we should.

This week has been really good!  All of us in our house got pretty sick throughout the week though but we are feeling better now! (Well I feel good so.. I guess that is good for me).

A cool experience about helping the church grow out here in Kiribati happened this last week when we went to our rescue.  This week for the rescue our Stake President assigned some people and families that they would go rescue and then become their home teachers. We had the opportunity to go lead Autin (a man just recently activated this year) and our recent convert Kianteiti to the house of a less active guy and his wife and kid which we are having lessons with. I just felt so good walking away from that house as their new home teachers.  I was so happy to have others with me as well that were now talking to that family.

Another cool thing happened last Saturday when Autin had the opportunity to baptize the mother and son of the less active father (who hasn't been to church in years). He came to church on Sunday and watched his wife and kid get confirmed. It was just super cool to watch.

In our mission we really are trying to focus on teaching families and helping people grow as families. Honestly family is one of the most important things ever. There is so much support that can be given in a family that cannot be given anywhere else.

Things are just going really good out here in Tarawa.  We had one of our investigators tell her parents about her having lessons and they told her they did not approve.  But she is older and living with a return missionary and she just told us she was going to be baptized anyways. 

The Gospel is the most important thing.  If we lose friends, family, things or anything for this lifetime because we choose to follow Jesus Christ we will receive much more in the life to come.

I will share a quote from Gordon B Hinckley that says something like life is not just meant to be endured, but it is meant to be enjoyed.  I hope you all have a great week!!

Elder Dinsdale