Monday, October 27, 2014

No email this week but an unexpected message and picture

I just found this on Facebook today in my "other" messages folder:

July 27, 2014

Sister Pettingill, my husband, Trevar Daw served with your husband some 24 years ago in the Buenos Aires South Mission. Trevar was flying to Kiribati two weeks ago and had the pleasure of meeting your son on the flight there. I thought you might enjoy a picture!

Melanie Daw

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Beru-Week 14

Last week:
It was actually kinda rough. Matiare got sick with the fever/diarrhea that I had been having and then I got strept throat again.  Matiare was so sick Wednesday that we couldn't even go out and work and then the rest of the week was just well.  Funny thing is though that it didn't slow down like you'd think it would.  I spent Wednesday reading all of the old Liahonas I could find around the house and actually found one with a picture of the Boyces just married in front of the Sac temple.

Now that I say that, the week was also filled with more miracles than I can count. But let's wait on those for a sec.

a Kiribati crab
Remember the spider crabs? Well I was studying Saturday when boom I feel a pinch on my toe and then see the very nice sized crab run up the wall and take a defensive position. What did I do? I went for the blowgun.  Seconds later that crab had three darts run through it, the last being a killshot right between the eyes.  I was all like heck ya! Matiare was like "I bwati riki nakoim" (basically I could do better). So we taped a bunch of stuff to our door and went at it. Waste of time? Maybe but wayy fun.

Hahah of course right after I ran into a hermit crab that was bigger than the spider crab. so that was fun.  I haven't told you all about the swordfish have I?  Well there are tons here. We see little ones 
every day next to this one bridge. and a while ago this guy caught a big one and gave us some meat and gave me the nose and another one from previously. So yeah I'm gunna make some swordfish nose swords sometime.

Anyways spiritual experiences.  Despite all of the sickness that was hitting me, I kept on working and as a result many different prayers of ours were resolved in this last week. A couple concerning marriages that had different problems. Also at the time when for the first time I didn't think I could go on, I read Helaman 10:4 about how Nephi declared the gospel with unweariness. And then I remembered the old wrestle matches I had with Dad and how when I was younger I would get back from a workout and think I was so strong and then Dad would lay on top of me and instantly I would be 
powerless. All my strength, gone, useless because of Dad's, not so little, belly.  What could I do? Nothing, just call out for help. And who was always more than happy to help me to escape and pin Dad? Jacob, my older brother. Without him. I would lose every time. With him it didn't matter how heavy Dad was, we would win, every time.

I hope you all can see where I'm going spiritually with this.  Without Jesus we lose and Satan wins. With Jesus, we win, everytime and change what would be a bitter experience into a family bonding one full of happiness and laughter. Sorry Dad that you represent Satan here, or rather your belly ;)

If my testimony means anything from out here, then know that at the very moment when I thought it would break this last week, somehow calling out to my Savior has made it stronger, and so it is in life.

Hahaha love y'all and know that I'm safe and happy out here if not entirely healthy but if you wait for everything to be perfect before you get to work, you will be waiting at least another thousand years 

Ain't nobody got time for that.


Elder Pettingill (the younger)

PS tell Sister White muchos gracias or e beti nrabwa for the package 
the other week!


Tell us more about these phone interviews you have?  Are they every week?  Are they kind of a like a conference or just checking in to turn in numbers?  How long do they last? Radio. No phones. Every Tuesday morning for like half an hour...everyone chats till the zone leaders come and then they ask for all of our stats and if we need anything and then we leave. Not much.

When it rains there, does water get in your house?  What about the members?  Do their houses get wet?  No walls so yeah water gets in everybody's houses.

Does everyone have rats in their houses, or just you guys because you have more food?  lots of rats. They're sacred in the culture so people don't kill them but we do.

You said that there are some kids you are teaching who want to go to Moroni High?  Does that mean they pretend to be interested or do they really want to know about the church? Kids have some desire, but like most kids, they're just kids, but we're planting seeds and sending them off to an all Mormon school.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Beru-Week 13

So first off gotta share with you all that I'm being transferred!  I'm heading off to Onotoua this next week to finish training Elder Whitehead!  And yup that means no email until I come back. Haha weren't you just saying how it would be so hard to not be able to email your missionary Mom? haha looks like you jynxed yourself!

This past week was wayy fun. Btw, it helped that I forgot I was even missing general conference and the one conference talk I got in the most recent package (Sister White's package came last week!) was plenty for me.  As much as I would have loved general conference, don't any of you think that God doesn't talk just as much to missionaries out here as he does in other places cause he does!  Just uses different ways ;)

Anywho, week started out with probably one of the most fun/relaxing pdays since I've been here. We made ourselves some hand made fishing rods and tried those out for a bit. We'll see if we get more time next week!  Of course we had a kain utu (FHE) with a family in this one unit, turns out it was actually a bday party and they had speakers. So we had a dope lil dance party which of course I RoCked.  Unfortunately, it also meant we got home late and, while I got to bed on time, Matiare didn't.

Consequences: Matiare slept in, then after doing our call ins on the radio (Missionary party cause everyone gets on from the outies) Matiare took another 4 hour nap and we didn't get out till after 3 to teach, and we have to stop at 6 because of the whole "sun goes down early and no lights." We don't get to go home but no one will accept lessons after dark.  So this last week wasn't the most productive for sure but it was a lot of fun and I saw countless blessings for being obedient despite the circumstances.

I decided this last week that there are two blessings we get for every time we follow the spirit or are obedient. A physical one and a spiritual one.  The commandments are a moral code that keep us safe physically just because we are simply living a good life. Yet without fail there comes a spiritual blessing from every good choice we make. We just often times don't see them because they are frequently unattached physically to our choices.  Hence when we search for our spiritual blessings, we see "The happiness which has been prepared for the saints." 2 Nephi 9:43

I love y'all and I want you all to know that my whole life is one filled with spiritual blessings. I am shocked everytime I am having a deep conversation with someone in Kiribati or they share a long story and I understand and can respond almost as if I'm speaking English (maybe not that well haha). Or when I dream in Kiribati since that is becoming a more and more frequent occurrence haha.

Again, I love you all and you are all so lucky to be wherever you are, so be happy in it :) Good luck speaking English!


Elder Pettingill (the younger)

PS That whole thing about me being transferred was a joke. I'll be here for a couple more months. I'm pretty funny huh?  Don't worry bout me out here Mom. I'm doing swell!


Who are you teaching? We're teaching thje family of a girl I recently baptized. Another family who's pretty much estranged from society because of a previous drinking problem who's friends with one of our member families, a few different kids who would like to go to Moroni for school, a dude who is the last one in his family to get baptized but his dad is a bad example so he's having trouble stopping his smoking and then we have 
some other potentials...So yeah we're working.

PS This lady's gunna try and post a pic of me and her a fb and then tag me so we'll see or maybe Klatt
An internet picture I found of kids fishing in Kiribati. Amazing! Look at this link for more pictures of Kiribati.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Beru-Week 12

First off, I told a couple of our members in a discussion that you two were going to get meet one of the Apostles (Rich and I saw Elder Neil L. Andersen this week) and their response surprised me. Translated it went, "People in America are so lucky. They get to see their bodies all of the time and even meet them sometimes, yet most of us here have only seen a picture here or there and some of us have never seen them at all." Basically implying "How can anyone in America not believe?"

That exerience really kind of defined so many different things I saw this week. For one, the fact that recently there have been a whole lot of problems that have come up with our branch president and his relationship with members, they really hurt my heart.  Anger is such a powerful tool of Satan's and so many people don't see that. And then I was reading through my journal as I was feeling wayy sick (from this fever/diarrhea thing that's been going around) and I came upon a quote I liked from an Elder Holland video I saw in the MTC about how we know that, in this last age, we will win.

Wayy comforting to know that the church here will succeed and it was an answer to my prayers for a miracle here. I didn't get some big manifestation that changed everything, but I got some knowedgle that was a miracle of comfort for me in knowing the church will win here in Beru.

To end on a funny note: One funny thing about this last week that might make some uncomfortable would have to be about the gas that came as a lead up to the full sickness I have. Let's just say it was bad. And turns out there are two positions that affect the ting (fart, pronounced sing). One, if you are sitting cross-legged, it is almost impossible and extremely painful to hold in the need to let that air out and two, sitting on a bike makes it almost impossible and still painful to try and let that air out. Just think about that and my current situation for a moment... Oh and the fact that farting is one of the most tabuaki (forbidden) things in the culture...

Let's just say I was in quite a dilemma for a bit there since I was either riding my bide to lessons or sitting in lessons...and then I found the poppers (you know the little 4th of July white things that make a loud sound?)  Well anytime I needed to fart real bad I'd just let it out and then if it turned out to be heard, boom, blame it on the poppers and it was almost always lost in the fascination of the American thing. I say almost because I may or may not have gotten us kicked out a house for farting, but it's alll good now. We're friends again. haha

Anyways love y'all. Stay strong and it is wayy true that you all are way blessed in America so take advantage of it!

Elder Pettingill (the younger)

Ps Elder Matiare fully believes that I will be transferred in the next little bit to train someone in the new intake as they'll be coming soon! Haha we'll see?

Just one question answered this week:

If we mail you something to your island, what address would we use? I don't know.  The address Matiare has used is Beru, Nuka and then his name, but I guess that won't exactly fly in America. haha