Wednesday, August 26, 2015


No regular email from Elder Pettingill this week, but this very short note showed up today. 

Elder Buhler and I are going on a boat for awhile (so like this next week or two).  Email yall when I get back ;)

love you all!
Elder Pettingill

Elder Buhler told his mom that they are going to Fanning Island, which is about 200 miles from Kiritimati. From what I have read from other missionaries, they visit the members and do any work they can while they are on the island. Here are some pictures of Fanning Island (Tabuaeran):

Elder Buhler also told his mom they would be dropped off by a ship and then picked up whenever the ship made its way back around to get them. We believe the name of the ship they are taking is Kwai, which was the name of Daniel's email. Below is some information we found about the cargo ship Kwai that travels from Hawaii to Kiribati.  

fully loaded

Current crew for the voyage

From the website, FAQs:

Where does the ships name KWAI come from? 
KWAI was not built having this name. She was originally named Bayern, which is the name of the region in Germany where she was built. As far as we were told, she was renamed KWAI when her new owner was taken with the 1958 World war 2 movie , "Bridge over the river KWAI". We had originally intended to change her name to something more in keeping with the work we intended to do in the South Pacific, but we were so busy getting the operation set up and we discovered we had taken to long to change her name.  The name KWAI had "stuck". We later found out the KWAI has many meanings in various languages with a few small spelling alterations.  In Thailand for instance we are told  it means "hard working water buffalo". The online Urban dictionary defines KWAI as "Really cool; far out, neat and classy". We figure this is all good- KWAI is KWAI 
Where does the KWAI sail to? 
We sail from Honolulu to three Islands in the country of Kiribati. Kiritimati (or Christmas) Island, Tabuaeran (Fanning) Island, Teraina (Washington) Island. 
We sail to the following Islands in the Cooks: Penrhyn, Rakahanga, Manihiki, Palmerston, Nassau, PukaPuka and Rarotonga. 
Do you ever go anyplace else? 
At this time these are the only Islands we go to. 
How long are the voyages? 
If we sail round-trip from Honolulu to Kiribati and back, then the voyage is usually from 6 to 7 weeks. 
If we sail round-trip from Honolulu to Kiribati and the Cook Islands with a turn around in Rarotonga, then the voyage is usually 4+ months. 
How many years has the KWAI been working in the South Pacific? 
We've been operating in this area of the Pacific since 2006. 
How large is the ship? 
43 meters (140 ft), Beam 7 meters (23 ft), Draft 3 meters (10 ft) and Tonnage 179. 
How many people does it take to sail the ship?  
A minimum of 8 sailors and a max of 11. 
How do I ship cargo or place an order for you to buy things for me? 
Please refer to the page on this "How to Shop Cargo) for full details.
Do you ever charter the ship? 
We have on occasion chartered the ship but only if we can fit it into our scheduled cargo delivery service. If you are interested in discussing a charter, please contact us. 
Do you take passengers? 
On occasion we have taken passengers from Honolulu but on a very limited basis and it always depends if we have a bunk available which these days is not often.  Any person applying for passage must first  fill out an application which among other things will ask you about your overall health and physical ability to safely be on a working ship.  This application will then be reviewed by the Captain. Any persons applying for passage must take into consideration that we are a working cargo ship and not a cruising passenger ship nor a yacht and therefore do not have certain comforts that other ships that cater to passengers will most likely have. Consideration will also be determined by availability of bunk space. There is  a daily fee.
Do you do sail training? 
No, we are not set up to be a training ship. 
Can I work for passage to another Island? 
Usually not, but the Captain has the last say on this. 
Can I board the ship in a foreign country and sail on the ship into the United States ? 
You can only  come into the United States if you have an appropriate VISA issued in your country of origin. 
Can I board as a passenger in a USA port (for example Honolulu) and be dropped off on another Hawaiian Island or ship cargo from a USA port to another USA port?  
Not at this time. We are a foreign built vessel and due to  the Jones Act , a United States federal statute from 1920 that regulates maritime commerce in US waters prohibits  us from working between any US ports. We can not ship passengers nor cargo between any two US ports. 
Can I invest in the KWAI? 
At this time we do not have stock for sale in the company. 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Christmas Week 22

Oh hey guys. School Started huh? Dang.

Pretty chill last week. got home exhausted every night this past week
with so much going on.  We had a couple pretty cool miracles this past
week that not only turned out with new people for us to teach who just
seem way ready to accept the gospel but we were able to find some new
less actives who showed to church as well.

We have three families who went off to Tonga to attend the temple this
past week and they should be getting back this Wednesday I think. I
hope that all went way well for them. I wish I could've gone too so
bad...oh well later

a couple cool lessons we got reminded of this past week were BYU
devotionals we downloaded onto our phone. One is 2011 by Brad Wilcox
on how "his grace is sufficient" and another by Todd Parker on "true
doctrine, understanding change on behavior".  You all should
definitely listen to them.

We got some yogurts in the local store imported from Hawaii. Froze
them and have been eating them every night this past week. Soo good.

We met an independent Baptist minister at the hotel today who just
seemed like he wanted to argue and prove us wrong or something. We
just smiled and nodded since we didn't have a problem with any of the
things he believed. He's just missing more truths that we have really,
I'd have to say. He ended up giving up and just making fun of how I do
every thing with my eyebrows instead of pointing or nodding. haha I
guess you all will have to bear with that when I get back.

Love you all have a great week,
Elder Pettingill

Hey Mom!

That package sounds great! Maybe put some aa and aaa batteries in
there but don't feel in any rush to send me a package cause I'm doing
great;) I sleep great so I should be fine w/o a fan but thank you!

funny that you said Jacob is more like me because I feel like my
mission has made me more laid back if anything ...haha Idk you all can
be the judges of that when I get home in like a year.

Yes it's likely that I will transfer in September and that I will get
to go visit a nearby island called Fanning for a week or so end of
august/beginning of septemberish.. idk we'll see!

crazy marriages...

I love you!
Elder Pettingill

Below are the text links to talks he referenced above, in case you want to read rather than listen to them. (The links attached to the text above are for the youtube version of the talk.)

 His Grace is Sufficient by Brad Wilcox

True Doctrine, Understood, Changes Attitudes and Behavior by Todd Parker

Monday, August 10, 2015

Christmas Week 21 haha

The first email we received this week was a repeat of last week's email. I emailed back, asking why he was sending the same email twice. Then we received this second email, below:

So I guess last week's email finally sent today...I was thinking about just letting it go and calling it a week but I probably would be the only one that thought it was funny so I'm not...

Solid past week. Elder Whitehead and I are really working hard together. And we get along great too. You all mentioned that I don't get any zone conferences/meetings w/the president/exchanges, which is funny because I honestly don't even really know what that'd be like, although I did kind of get it in Tarawa for a bit but yeah can't miss what you can't remember ;)

Well I hit 5 months working Banana tomorrow. That's crazy. doesn't feel like I've been here that long, honestly it has just been flying by. We had branch conference this past week and a bunch of fun activities that we didn't get to go to cause we were doing missionary work but it was all good cause on Sunday we had 154 people show up to church and the district presidency announced that they are thinking of splitting Banana into two branches come next year. It was a pretty awesome meeting and although it ran late and we were tired, I got a lot from it. Ha one of our investigators was sincerely disappointed when we told him that they normally only last 3 hours and not the 4+ that this last one was...Kiribati time is really something haha.

This past week we have been teaching one family in particular who we have really been depending on the spirit to do the teaching.  The husband is very strong in the kuc religion and when teaching on the Book of Mormon I decided to show him the references between the Bible and the Book of Mormon...despite past success my attempt to convince, even though well put together, were questioned and not accepted. However when we have born testimony and taught how the spirit wants, there is a peace in the room that no one can deny.

Quick question to mom and dad: could y'all put a new watch in my next package. My old one died and kinda just refused to work even with a new battery. I put together a little make shift watch but a new one would be much appreciated but is not urgent along with new multivitamins ;)

Uhm I seriously love you all a ton and I'm glad you're all having such good times cause I am too!


Elder Pettingill

Daniel has not sent us any new pictures, but we did see these pictures from Elder McCormick, his district leader who is working on the other side of the island. It gives a good idea of what things are like there for all the missionaries.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Christmas Week 20

Haha sounds like a busy week...yeah Elder Stone left on Wednesday and I've been working with Elder Whitehead ever since!  It's actually been pretty fun to have a change and we are working pretty well together. Like 0 problems so that's good.   Plus we've had a good amount of success this past week which has been sweet.

This next week is our branch conference so today we are planning and going and doing the activities that they have planned out (public holiday today) and then having a branch FHE tonight.

One spiritual experience we had was even though tracting is not very effective we decided to try it and ended up finding a long time less active lady who was just waiting for us to come and teach her family/husband so that they could go to the temple and stuff. Well at the time that we were talking to her, her husband walks in, we end up talking with him and then teaching him and all of a sudden we were in a way spiritual lesson where it was definitely the spirit leading the whole thing. Like the spirit was there and everyone knew it. We ended up giving him a ABM (BofM) a challenge to read and pray about it and a baptismal date for the 29th if he gets a testimony. It was way cool.

Sorry don't really remember what else I said in the first email sorry (his first email never made it to us)...I bought some cloth for $19 for this lady to make you a Kiribati church out fit though. The only problem now is that I kinda used the rest of my personal money to pay for it. Worth it as long as it fits ;) I showed the lady my pictures of you and she seems like she knows what she's doing so it should be fine. but like in my Christmas package or something if you all could throw in a little bit of money that would be awesome!

I love you
Elder Pettingill

I am guessing the church outfit he is having made  means a mu-mu type dress like these sisters are wearing in the pictures below

or the skirt type thing some of these sisters are wearing