Sunday, March 23, 2014

In Loving Memory of Elda Ninja.

Because I live in a 30% Hindu nation.  We celebrated Holi (or however you spell it).

FIRST OF ALL SHOUTOUT TO MY LITTLE SPEED DEMON SISTER SOPHIE SOPHISTICATED WRIGHT, WHO HAS GOTTEN FIRST PLACE IN EVERY EVENT SHE HAS PARTICIPATED IN SINCE THE SEASON BEGAN TWO MEETS AGO. She is not only following in my footsteps, she is ABLOWING MY LEGACY OUT OF THE WATER if that makes sense. She is going places, ladies and gentlemen. I am so proud of her. ALSO MY BROTHER ADAM, AMWRI, whose choir got a billion first placements at their San Diego choir competition thing, way to go! 
ALSO SAM THE MAN WITH A PLAN IN A CAN, did an apparently fabulous job playing Jack Sparrow in the ward roadshow.
Wish I could have been there. To support all of these nuggets. 
Hot tamales, I have such ridiculously talented siblings. 
Then of course, there is me. Spreading the gospel like there's no tomorrow. NBD.
This week was a bittersweet one. FIRST we celebrated Holi or however it is spelled in what was most likely my favorite P-day ever. Elder Heath the ZL's idea. My hair is still a couple shades of blue and pink (what kind of missionary am I?). I looked like a punk rocker the day after. Then, we said goodbye to our beloved Elder Ninja (Elder Heninger) at what was probably my favorite district meeting ever. We had it in not the chapel but in the family history center, which has air conditioning! One of the few places in all of Fiji that has that particular blessing. I had baked a cake (BY STEAMING IT, a new technique that I have acquired) and Elder Kumar (Elda Ninja's comp) had made all kinds of Indian sweets and treaties. All for the love of our Dear Old Dad, Elder Heninger. Then we listened to him tell stories of the adventures he had had back at the Y. Then I had everyone write their names at the top of a sheet of paper, then pass them to the left. "Now write down one compliment and one point of advice," said I. Something we had done in my health class back in my freshman year of high school. Really set the tone for the rest of the meeting. Because what was Elder Ninja's training on? Charity and love. And he basically talked about how he had been able to develop charity over the course of his mission. And of course, we read 1 Corin 13. And it was simple, but profound and powerful. I was struck by how much these elders change on their missions. By how much I have changed. Christlike charity is not an easy thing to develop! But we all manage to develop it, at some point in our missions. And it changes us from just being goofy kids to being, well, adults. Ish. Elder Heninger is a very charitable man, and I have the utmost respect for him. At the end of his training, he expressed to us how much he loves us, and how much he's going to miss us. Man. We were all tearing up. AH I miss him. 
But Savusavu needs him. He'll be such a fabulous ZL. 
Now we have a new District Leader. His name is Elder Pence. I mentioned him once before, I believe, in connection to the Branch Presidency in Levuka, an outer island from whence Sister Bechu came. Found out he was never the Branch President out there. But that they still do that in at least Rotuma (having a missionary be the Branch President, I mean). Anywho, he is no Elder Ninja. At first I was weary of him, because of his sarcastic tendencies. Also because we had a good thing going, here in Lautoka 1st ward. A little family. Me and Elder Heninger were both training, so it was kind of like Mom and Dad and the two kids (Sister Eneri and Elder Kumar). So when he left, I told Sister Eneri, "Well, your dad has passed on to Savusavu, and I had to get remarried." So now she calls Elder Pence her step-dad. But anyway, since he has arrived, we have had to see him a lot, between ward activities and baptismal interviews and whatnot. And now I have come to respect the guy. One of our members who is a young guy and an RM always gives me a hard time and teases me, and it was really getting on my nerves. Elder Pence noticed. He asked me if I wanted him to talk to the guy. I said no, it's ok, I could take it. But then he said "No, he needs to treat you with more respect." Brownie points for him. He's a good elder, and he's here to work hard. I can appreciate that. 
Then he interviewed Mosa. His first ever baptismal interview as DL. I was worried, because we pretty much taught Mosa entirely in Fijian. My Fijian is super basic and Sister Eneri just testifies. If he learned anything, it was from the Spirit. But somehow, he passed! I called Elder Pence afterwards and said, "Look, if you don't think he's ready then don't pass him. This is eternity we are talking about here." And I told him about how I am super self conscious of my Fijian. And you know what? He told me that Mosa was definitely ready, and that I should be proud. I really appreciated that. SO yes, Elder Pence is in my good books. AND Mosa is getting baptized this Saturday at 6 pm. If any of you are in the neighborhood, you are welcome to attend. 
SISTER ENERI IS ON HER 11TH WEEK OF TRAINING. That means she gets to be the senior companion for the week. She leads all the planning and all the studies and all the lessons and she gets to be in charge of the phone and the keys and EVERYTHING. Stressful for me, but it could end up being really relaxing. We'll see. AH THEY GROW UP SO FAST. I hope I get to train again, I've really enjoyed it. And she has been such a blessing and light in my life. 
The center of my mission has been my favorite part. But now, EIGHT MORE MONTHS TO GO. I'm not trunky. 


MOSA IS ON THE FAR RIGHT. These are some of my favorites in the good ol' FJ.

Found this one going through a new crosscut. We love to find
crosscuts. (Shortcuts.) Because we walk probably twenty miles a day.

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