Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Surprise!! I'm in Vanuatu now

Well last week I couldn't email cause I was on a plane to VANUATU!!! President decided I was time for me to go and he called me as a "travel elder" to work in the office. Let me explain a bit. So our mission covers a total of like 11 islands with missionaries on them (or something like that) so come transfers time someone has to figure out how in the world 125ish missionaries move around between 11 islands. To add on to that we have to figure out how president and his wife to zone conferences between islands and exchanges between missionaries and just tons of stressful stuff. I like the job cause we are really busy but we don't get to teach and do normally missionary work. It'll probably take me a bit to learn Bislama cause all office work is in English. The office jobs are stressful but it has its benefits. We have a huge house with AC that we like to call the hotel cause we host tons of missionaries all the time when they are moving around islands. Also being with President and the AP's all the time is a blessing. We get to know mission stuff before everybody else :)

Anyway as for the last 2 weeks its been insane. Elder Champoux and I did some awesome work in Vallee des Colons and Motorpool before I left! Believe it or not but Coralie got baptized! She decided 3 days before she moved to the Caribbean that she wanted to get baptized in New Cal!!! She told Elder Champoux and Elder Graf when they were on an exchange that she wanted to. Crazy miracle. That was a good good day. It was also a very stressful and chaotic weekend cause its a little hard to plan a baptism and a confirmation a day before it happens haha. We spent the whole day just planning and and warning the brand new bishop who was called the week before and it was just CRAZY. Also the mission as a whole just reached its year baptismal goal of 1017! That was a good day for president haha. 

Also leaving Coralie and leaving New Cal on a moments notice was hard!!! Its very likely that Ill never go back too. I feel like that where my mission call is and now I'm restarting my mission. New language new country new culture. It drive me crazy that I cant talk to locals now! Very few speak good french or English so I have to restart haha. Its humbling. Its also humbling to see how poor people here in Vanuatu are. I'm pretty sure this is one of the poorest countries in the world its nuts. Its also hard to leave Elder Champoux. I only trained him for like 5 weeks. The area was starting to pick up too. We found like 4 new super potential investigators and Motorpool should be having another baptism by the end of this year. 

Random highlights: 
So last night we were hosting all these new arrivers in the mission and we ate out at a waterfront restaurant (don't worry its cheap) and we met this half drunk sailor which wanted to talk philosophy with us. He's actually a super interesting dude and he's was hilarious apart from the fact that he swore like a sailor haha. He told us his website if you wanna see. He's a modern day hippy. Harold

So we followed up with that lady from Cameroon and she promised us she'd read the Book of Mormon and send us both an email when she finished it. We both left the area but she was super serious. Talk about a golden investigator. 

Rudi and Lucinda got married so Rudi should be getting baptized soon!!

I drive a suuuper beat up manual bus to move missionaries around for transfers. I love it. Also everyone here drives like a psychopath

That's it for this week! Here's some random pictures:
Coralie just after her confirmation
Mission pres house 

Leavers :(((((((((( (now RM's) and my new comp elder Lamont from Logan Utah (The short white kid). He's only been out for 3 months. 
Views from the house
Vanina and her family. Our last lesson
Goodbye magenta members
Bye bye mission daughters
Elder Gray the legend going home! The dude with the hat. 
Its rains ALOT. Casual flooding
An awesome tahitian family that does tons of missionary work. 
Mami Rose gave me a flower

Monday, December 11, 2017

The Turks and Caicos

So last Pday was a working day. We did shopping and emailing but then went straight to lessons. We saw Vladimir again but couldn't really teach much. His memory hasn't recovered enough since his near death experience and he doesn't really retain anything we teach. We also found a Futunian family who doesn't practice a religion because they have "too many kids" They invited us in to eat with them and we couldn't say no haha. They said they can't go to church because they can't control their 8 young kids! 

Thursday we had a strange little lesson with a dude named Ludovic. It was his first lesson and he decided to say a pray for us in the middle of the lesson and then he asked us to give him a blessing by the laying on of hands at the end and then he said: Once I take all your lessons I can get baptized? Do I have to go on a mission too? I really wasn't sure if he was serious or not but I was just strange all around. Thursday night we had a dinner with our investigator Ruddy who's getting married Saturday and hopefully baptized soon after. We had like 4 members there which was awesome including his soon to be member wife who is an awesome member missionary haha. 

Friday we had a little English class with Coralie and that evening was the ward Christmas party too! All went pretty well. Coralie actually speaks pretty good English already so it was just an "immersion" class. Unfortunately no other investigators came :( 

Saturday we had absolutely nothing already planned but it worked out alright! We felt like we needed to see Vanina again who hasn't really progressed in a long time and at the end of the lesson the husband who doesn't want her to get baptized came up to us and said he wants to start learning more about the church! We also taught a little lesson to an inactive at her work haha. She irons clothing for a living and we taught her while she was ironing. It was crazy how good she was at ironing haha. I was mesmerized.

Sunday we finally returned to the chapel broken by the cyclone! We also happened to get a new bishop! I did not see that coming but it was cool. Excited to have some fresh eyes on the ward. After church we just did some door to door. We are trying an approach where we bless peoples houses with a short little pray for the holidays. Its actually been working pretty well. One door a naked dude answered and asked for our book and then we gave it to em and left lol. 

Monday we happened to run into an inactive who hasn't seen a church member in 17 years apparently. When we knocked on the door she kinda freaked out a bit and was super happy to see missionaries. Funny thing was is that we were suppose to have a lesson with a dude that was suppose to have lived in that apartment but we think he gave us a false address. Nothing happens by chance though eh? We also continued to do alot of tracting. We met 2 super potential ladies that took as a sign cause they both need alot of help in their lives. One is from Vanuatu and the other from Cameroon Africa.

Tuesday Coralie dropped the bomb on us that she's moving to the Caribbean on MONDAY. That means she wont be getting baptized here but she is super excited to see the little branch in the Turks and Caicos islands. Kinda sad she's leaving but the work goes on. 

That's it for this week! 

Avec amour,
Elder Burbank

Just some random photos we took in the car.