WEEK 7: Atheists+ Zone Conference+ Mermaids +Driving

 Hello Everyone!

Another good week here in Mt. Maunganui!
Some experiences this week:

We had zone conference this week with everyone in Tauranga. It was good to hear from President Cummings and learn a lot about how we are going to now have smartphones in this mission and what they will be used for. I hope that all of the missionaries will be able to use them wisely and just use them to enhance the work, not become the center of it. 

I am learning how to DRIVE! AHHHHHH haha. I am actually doing pretty well with it, even with being on the other side of the road! Except every time I use the blinker, I end up turning on the windshield wipers instead, because it's switched. I'll get it eventually :) 

We had an interesting experience while knocking on doors on a really flash (expensive, rich) street. We were almost done, and we were rejected at every single house. On one of the last few houses, we talked to a lady briefly about who we were and a little of the Gospel and she kindly said "Sorry girls, I'm not interested." I turned to walk away, but my companion said to her, "Wait! Do you believe in mermaids??" I couldn't believe what I had heard. She literally asked her if she believed in mermaids. She gave us a confused look and then shut the door. I started laughing and asked Sister Toi, "Where did that come from? now she is going to think that we believe in mermaids!!!" She said she had no idea why she had said that. So.... that was interesting.

A good experience that we had was we had an FHE with a member family. They had invited 3 families of nonmembers, but all of them canceled. The people who did show up was a chilean couple that Rongo met on the bus that morning and invited them to come. I think they thought it was going to be a party or something, because they looked very confused. Sister Toi and I started to teach a lesson about how we can strengthen our families, and the man cut us off and said, "I respect your beliefs, but we are atheists, so we will just listen." We were kind of shocked, but we continued in teaching. After the lesson we had dinner and were able to find out a lot more about them. They were just married and were really nice people. The conversation was really good and so was the food haha. The point of this is that at the end, they told us they felt peace and something they hadn't felt before. I knew they were feeling the spirit. the wife said, "My heart is all filled up, I appreciate what you said and the people you are" It was really cool to see the change they had within an hour. They told us they want to do something like FHE with their future children. I loved that.

I love you all!

-Sister Barker

-meeting at a surf club to have a lesson with denny, a nice catholic man but he talks wayyy too much
-driving with sis Toi
-Mama's donuts in New Zealand