Fiji Suva Mission

Fiji Suva Mission

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Cabin Fever Unlocked (Matei/Qeleni Area, Week 15)

This was not my choice of title for this week. This was all Elder Jonutz. Though it does kind of describe our week - in several different ways.

-Jese and Taufa think they look like "kai valagi"(white people) after covering themselves with baby powder. Way funny!

This week was a lot better than the past few weeks! We got out and worked hard, it was so uplifting and fun! Tuesday was an extremely disappointing day - our "golden investigators" Tabale and Polonia would hardly let us talk and just preached to us about their beliefs as Pentecostals. That's fine that we can share about our beliefs - questions and discussion invite the Spirit of the Lord. But they just brought everything we said back to the same concept - their belief that God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are one being. I respect those that believe such, but as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I believe that God the Father, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are three separate beings. As a
missionary, we do our best to avoid confrontation and "bible bashes", and
the beautiful thing about the message of the Restoration is that all those questions and doubts can be answers if one just prays to know if Joseph Smith was a true prophet of God. But Tabale and Polonia weren't really listening to us - as Elder Jonutz and I bore our heartfelt testimonies of the truthfulness of our message, we felt the Spirit, but were still unsure if they would accept the message. I was so disappointed, but just like our Heavenly Father, I will not give up on anyone so quickly. I love them, how could I give up on them?

Elder Vermeeren came to inspect our flat - and we
passed inspection!!
Thursday and Friday were great days - Elder and Sister Vermeeren went visiting with us, but as we went, we passed right by our planned-out lessons. I didn't feel any moving need to go see those people. Instead, I felt prompted to visit two older sisters in the ward, Sister Mari and Sister Rosa. Turns out they needed a good visit, and they needed help getting a constant supply of fresh water, which Elder and Sister Vermeeren were happy to help out with. Every visit we had on Thursday was unplanned, and yet we were guided to the people that needed us the most. I love the Lord and His work.
This is Navakacoa village - a rugby field surrounded by houses. 
It's just up the street from the chapel in Qeleni.

Friday we were in Qeleni and it was way cool -

Elder Jonutz and I went to this little settlement called Pagai (which was originally settled by Tongans), and we were invited into the first house we saw. We had a great visit with some lovely Fijians, and then one of them pointed to the older man present and said, "He's the chief of the village". I almost peed myself, here I was, talking normally to this chief and I didn't even know it! In Fiji, culture is everything - as missionaries, we try to respect it as much as we possibly can, including using extremely proper, respectful Fijian when addressing a chief (known as a "Tui"). But it turned out all good, and they invited us back as we were leaving. Way cool day, we walked away very happy.

We had a picnic on a bridge in Qeleni, 
and we watched some Fijian kids having some fun.
By the end of that day, though, I had a massive headache, and we'd forgotten the ibuprofen at our flat in Matei. On Saturday it turned into a bit of a head-cold, which was then joined on Sunday by another fever. I can't seem to catch a break! But I asked Elder Jonutz for a priesthood blessing, and he said something very interesting as he pronounced the blessing. He felt prompted to bless me that I would
find answers in the scriptures. Afterwards, I read my scriptures. Right now, in addition to reading the Book of Mormon, I'm reading the New Testament. The chapter I read on Sunday was a direct answer to that blessing. Romans 5:3-5 taught me that these tribulations will teach me patience, which will in turn give me experience, and such experiences will give me faith and hope. I've said it before, I'll say it again and again: I love my Heavenly Father and the miracles he pours out on His children every single day. I testify that He and our Savior both live and love us all, so much.

Just as much as I love you all!

Elder Barnaby

***Some pictures provided by Elder and Sister Vermeeren***

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