WEEK 9 : Change + Penelope and the yogurt cup + Sister Meto

KIA ORA!!!

So!    There was so much CHANGE that happened this week!

A lot!! Ahhh!

The biggest change was that my dear, sweet, bubbly companion Sister Toi has been transferred to a new area. She and I have developed a very good friendship as we have served together, and I am definitely going to miss her. I was very blessed to have her as my first companion here in New Zealand. She will now be serving in Taupo, with another Sister from Australia. It was bittersweet to see her go, because she has been in the Mt. Maunganui area for about 4 months and there have been a lot of people that she has developed relationships with. I know she will do great work in Taupo :)

so... Introducing...
Sister Meto!! My new companion. She is Fijian/Kiribati. She came from serving in Rotorua. She tells me all about living in Fiji and the culture there and it just blows my mind. Her family literally takes a small boat to get from island to island on a weekly basis. She is not used to cold at all, so she is always wearing her coat. She can speak 5 different languages!! We have very different personalities, but we get along :) Sometimes I feel bad because I can't always understand her, her accent is thick and she talks fast. She and Sister Toi were companions in the MTC! And she likes to dance, hip hop and hula.

Something I have reflected a lot on this week is change. There are so many changes on a mission (and in life in general) that are evident. Changes in yourself, in others, in circumstances, in emotions, in attitudes. It is such a beautiful thing to watch someone slowly, SLOWLY, accept good principles from the Gospel and try to change their life. Ngawara and her two kids came to church for the first time this week and I just watched them and my heart wanted to burst. I look at all the members and their stories of conversion and I can't help but feel a deep love for anyone, anywhere in the world that makes an effort to be a good person, despite all the odds stacked against them. 
Scripture on change, Mosiah 5:2:

And they all cried with one voice, saying: Yea, we believe all the words which thou hast spoken unto us; 
and also, we know of their surety and truth, because of the Spirit of the Lord Omnipotent, 
which has wrought mighty change in us, or in our hearts, that we have no more dispositioto do evilbut to do good continually.  

The one thing that will not change is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The doctrines are eternal, and we know we can depend on them despite whatever change comes to us.  I love that.


Funny Story:
Sister Meto and I were trying to find a former investigator on a certain street, but when we knocked on the door, she wasn't home. So we decided to just make the most of our time there and knock the rest of the doors on the street. We turned away from the house and saw a little girl staring at us from the street. "What are you doing??" She asked us. She was on roller skates and had a yogurt cup in her hand that she was eating with just her fingers, no spoon. We explained that we were missionaries and we teach people about Jesus Christ. She asked us if she could help. Although it was entirely impractical that a child on roller skates could help us door knock, I knew that Jesus wouldn't turn away such a cute little soul and so I let her help us. She told us about the people who lived in each house and roller skated to each one. When we had finished the street, I asked her if we could sit on the grass with her and teach HER about Jesus Christ. So we did. And it was lovely. I gave her a picture of Christ.

I hope you all have a great week!!!

Aroha Nui,

Sister Barker


PS I am now a certified driver!!! AH! so I am driving everyday haha.


                                                          Penelope and Sister Meto


                                                    Saying Goodbye to Sister Toi   👋  Bitter sweet......

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