Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Language

Hey Mom and Dad!!!! Wow! hahaha, the pictures all look so great!!! i
can't believe how much everyone is changing! Even you guys, mom and
dad, I see you're clothes styles are changing a bit, dad's got new
glasses, and stuff like that!! Sharp! I can't believe how much we all
change. Even I myself, I know, have changed a lot too! Crazy..
Thanks for all the updates etc about the family! Nate's getting
married soon! Hope it all goes well!! Should be good!
That's cool about your guys marriage get away! Sounds like it went
good! Hopefully you guys learned a lot and had a great time!
Wow, I didn't know about Gazelem either! Interesting! Wait a minute,
brad wilcox..... did you guys already know him?
That's good to hear that Scott and melissa's dance went well. Yeah,
they're growing way fast. Wow, Scott ought to be able to send in his
papers soon, eh? I think it was march when I sent mine in, and I think
I got it at the first of april or something. Whenever we did that big
party at Loy Blake park with rotary and interact.
Well, yea. Kiribati's grammar is soooooo easy. But yeah, the
pronounciation is way different. To the point where you ask a person
to say a word slowly, and you hear the different sounds. Then they say
it normally, and you literally can't pick out certain sounds. Just
because of the nature of the way vowels are spoken. They kind of speak
out of a different part of their throat that you speak english in.
It's interesting. It's easier once you get the accent down though.
Gift of tongues is definitely a necessity. Especially in order to be
able to learn the language quickly enough in the short period of two
years that we have to serve in.
This week has been good! We've worked hard, seen lots of blessings!
Seen improvement! We've had a lot of good referrals lately. I think I
might have already mentioned Tebaakaro. But I'll explain his situation
a little bit. He randomly came back from Butaritari to live with his
parents here. His parents got baptized about a month ago. He's in a
really good situation to be taught. Elder Hanks is also growing a lot,
he taught pretty much the entire lesson to Tebaakaro the other day on
Plan of Salvation premortal life through till The Atonement. We got a
random referral for this one girl named Beiaa. She's very prepared,
she's been to church multiple times. She kind of lost contact with
missionaries somehow after having moved around a bit but got back with
em right before moving to our area. So, we contacted her on Saturday
and she came to church on Sunday, she's doing awesome, the ward
welcomed her in really good. She went into the chapel, sat down by no
one. We saw her a few minutes later and she had two other members of
the YSA sitting by her (she's 18). She said she really loved church
later that day. We're trying to get Nei Baroia to lesson with us with
her, Nei baroia is a member, 19 years old also. Elder Hanks and I have
been studying chapter 13 a bit this week as part of 12 week program.
It's so true, every new member needs a friend. Chapter 13 is awesome,
lots of good stuff in it. yeah we're trying to use a few more of the
ideas in that chapter right now in our work. It's so true, joining the
church is a big sacrifice. It's important that we support new members
and try to help join them into the social circle of the ward or
branch. Those were just a few of the things we learned from the
chapter.
We've also had many chances this week to search the scriptures for
more support on the doctrines of the Gospel. We've been teaching two
houses from the 7th day adventists. They always want multiple
scriptural support on the doctrines we teach. We've found a lot of way
good scriptures in peter, job, hebrews, alma and many other books.
It's been pretty cool, way fun too!
Well, I gotta go soon!! Love you all!! Thanks for everything!!! have a
good week!!! Love ya! - ELder SEffker

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

entire week 24/7 we didn't speak in english!

Hey!!!
So yeah the way we did our language fasting was that we chose a week
and for the entire week 24/7 we didn't speak in english!
Yeah it worked out pretty well! It was good!
Sorry I don't have a lot of time this week. My time is about to hit.
But, this week has been good!! Mauri means hello by the way. How are
you is ko uara.
I can send more on the language next week if you guys want hahaha. The
pronounciation is very simple, in theory.
Well, we've seen a lot of blessings this week! Love you all! Thanks
for the prayers! The church is true! Love yous! Ti a bO!- ELder
Seffker





Wednesday, January 24, 2018

growth in our missionary skill

Yeah the new missionary intake is pretty cool. They're all pretty
close, just as all intakes. Those are they who you started the mission
life with. Just like our earth life, we're all close to our earthly
families. You can always turn to a member of your intake for company.
It's funny how many similarities there are between our earthly lives
and a mission. Any way, this week has been great! We've been "language
fasting" all week, haha, Elder H and I, and the other missionaries
in our house as well. It's gone really great actually, we've got 4
missionaries in our house. One has been out for 7 months, the other 3,
and yeah Elder H just a week or so. Haha, I can't believe how fast
the time goes by, I'm like an old man. We've had the language fast
going on, I've seen a few miracles come with it as well! Ten Tamana
offered to teach us Kiribati. He's so funny, when my new comp came and
met Tamana, he was like (huge smile, in a very even paced and
articulate accent) "Mauri! Mauri Elder H. Ko uara? Ko na riai n
reireiniko te taetae n te tai ae e waekoa" (Hey how are you? You need
to teach yourself the language in a very quick fashion) "Teuana te
namakaina, ao ko bwati ne, ko kona n taetae. Uoua te namakaina, ao ko
fluent, completely. Ti na reireiniko bwa ko aonga n taetae n aron te I
Kiribati" (one month, you can speak, two, you're completely fluent.
I'm going to teach you how to speak like a gilbertesian).
Anyway, those lessons have been pretty good. The language fast has
definitely helped out.
We've seen a lot of growth in our missionary skill as well. We split
our little area between our 2 companionships. We've had a lot of time
to tract. Tracting is a great learning experience. I've learned more
about really focusing on the restoration. We visited this one lady who
told us that she wasn't allowed in her church to lesson with us on
anything that opposed her beliefs. We tried any way, because this lady
was kind of a referral, we lessoned on just a random verse in the
bible. yeah it didn't go way well. I learned just to focus on finding
those who are prepared, even if they've been referred to you. We were
able to find a house afterward where we lessoned on the restoration
and had success, he was a member of the 7th day Adventists. A way nice
guy. Apparently he had been a teacher in Makin where I used to be.
Anyway, Thanks for the update on the family! Ahh the bachelorette
party, that's awesome! Sounds like gold's gym is going great.  Yeah
that's a pretty good gym I've heard. Did you guys get a month pass or
a year pass? Well have a good week! Love you! - ELder Seffker

Monday, January 8, 2018

Baptism

Here's some pictures from the baptism!!
Touai asked me to baptize him that's why I'm in white, haha he's nice.
It's so awesome to see his getting baptized. His testimony is so
strong from reading and praying so fervently, he's an example to all
of us. He's changed so much in the past 4 months. Well, ti a bo!

definitely seen Heavenly Father's hand

So, this week has been pretty cool. So, we've definitely seen Heavenly
Father's hand in our lives recently. We had a few things go on this
week. We were trying to baptize K this Saturday, cause that's
what we told him his date was. Well, Saturday rolls around, turns out
his marriage still wasn't done... because the minister of justice or
something wasn't at the court to sign their paper haha. Well, we get
the word saturday morning. Change of plans! We head to Bwairiki, maybe
1 hour west by bus, with the plan that we'll track down the ministers
house and ask him if he could sign it then and then we'd pay him over
time(which is actually totally a culturally acceptable thing to do in
kiribati). Randomly zone leaders are in our area and offer to take us
there. So we go to bwairiki, we meet this lady in a store who tells us
where most of the workers live. We go to the place, first house, we
talk with a guy a bit, he kind of knows maybe how we can find him,
another neighbor walks in, and they two direct us to the ministers
house. We show up to his house, no one answers for a while, finally we
get an answer: "he's partying, come back later. Actually he has a
party tonight as well, come back monday". A car rolls up, it's him! As
we go to talk to him, we see his wife: she politely motions: "he's
drunk right now", we figure he was still able to drive, so we talk to
him a little bit any way. We talk with him a little bit we explain our
situation with him a little bit, ask if he'd be willing to sign it
(the court was like a five minute walk from his house) he seemed
really nice at first, but then randomly becomes angry and tells us he
won't. Then he goes into his house and goes to sleep. So, yeah we
tried a few other things after, see if any one else could sign the
paper or whatever. Not much could be done. Any way, we went to get
lunch, and we see this guy who's maybe touring or something in
kiribati, "Hey!" we say, we say hi to a guy from kiribati who seemed
to be guiding him around, he's way nice, shakes our hands. we offer
our hand to the other guy. "no thank" he says, "I don't shake my hand
with snakes". We talk with him a little bit, tried to resolve any
misconceptions he'd had about the LDS church, he didn't really seem to
want to listen though. Any way, we left bwairiki went on with our day.
Even though we weren't able to get the marriage done, I still felt
we'd had a really good day, we tried hard. Thinking back about it, had
we got the paper done, there was still a lot of stuff that we'd have
had to do. I'm not sure if we'd have enough time to finish it all
before the baptism would've started. So yeah, and it's not too big a
problem if he'd have to wait a week, everyone was happy and okay with
it. So yeah, it was probably Heavenly Father's plan that they wait.
There are actually a lot of pros to it being next week!
Any way, one more story. We meet this guy on the street, I can't
remember if I told you guys the first part of the story, but he told
us to visit him, he was gonna teach us "the ancient/old language". Any
way, we search around for him all this morning, finally find his
house, someone knows where he lives. We walk to the oceans edge, about
40 feet out there's another tiny little area of land, only big enough
for about one little house, that's his house. We weren't able to visit
him because the ocean was surrounding it. Apparently it has to be low
tide to visit him. I felt like I was in a zelda game or something.
We're gonna go back in a few hours when it's low tide so this guy can
teach us these ancient words. haha.
Well, thanks again for the prayers, they're way apprecitated!!!!!!
Love you guys all!!!! - Elder Seffker

drowning in work

So, yeah, man that sounds like some fun Sunday activities! Nice goals.
Those are way good. Seriously you're an awesome example of member
missionary work. And it's so true that the referral is always better
than tracting, pretty much always. I'd say probably one of the best
ways to prepare to become a missionary is to be a member missionary.
yeah some of my goals are to try to hand out more pamphlets on the
buses here when I travel. because yeah it's kind of hard to have like
a really long developed conversation on the generally short and
uncomfortable bus rides. But I figure that the best way to really show
love and help them progress to learning about the church is maybe to
just have a goal that whoever I sit by I'll try to have a little, real
conversation and then what ever gospel principle the conversation
tends toward I can give them a pamphlet and then maybe a mini
explanation of how the pamphlet is relative to their life and mine and
I can bear a short genuine testimony of how the principle explained
could help them and how it's helped me. And yeah then I'll just see
how far it goes. If they're willing to read it, if they're willing
that we give their names and cities to the Elders that are there. Any
way, yeah that's kind of one of mine. I'm also trying to apply PMG
more to my life here. I'm trying to learn at least 1 thing everyday
maybe out of PMG or a general conference talk that I can apply
throughout the day, and that I'll actually do and use and that I'm not
already doing. Right now we've got a few recent converts in our branch
and we did the math that even the few times we plan on visiting them
all each week would equate still to like 15 lessons a week just with
recent converts. PMG says to try to use recent converts for member
presents in lessons. So that's kind of our goal. To just combine as
many of the recent convert lessons as we can with investigators
lessons.
Anyway, this week has been awesome, we've been way blessed this week
that the baptism went through. There were many disappointments, but at
least three things worked out. All the baptizees came to church the
week before, they all passed their interviews, and they all got
baptized (and got the Holy Ghost at church the day after). Any way,
yeah we definitely saw lots of miracles this week. It's so nice to be
busy, we're literally like drowning in work. They had 4 Elders here,
and then they went to just us two last transfer. So we took all the
investigators of the entire area. Any way, yeah Elder B my
companion loves to plan, kind of like me, he's probably actually
better haha, so things have been really good that way, that's made
things a bit smoother.
Any ways, thank you all for the prayers. We've seen so many blessings,
even amidst some trials. There was this one specific miracle that me
and Elder B saw: all the people getting baptized were
getting dressed. This one girl comes up to us and says "that one
ladies outfit is way tight". "how tight?" we say.. see respondes, yeah
it was really too tight to be of use. Well, there really wasn't any
other way that we could've got baptismal clothes for her at that time.
Maybe simply to call zone leaders and wait for them to be free and
bring us clothes from 30 minutes car west. Not much time elapsed as we
kind of just wandered around thinking. We open up a random closet,
there are books, etc. On one shelf there's a bundle of white. We check
it out, it's a womens XXL baptismal outfit. All of us Elders were kind
of just in awe. Heavenly Father is so good, as mom always says. It was
a really special experience. I'm so grateful for Heavenly Father's
tender mercies toward us. It's all by grace. Well, yeah, prayer is
definitely real, I've definitely said tons of prayers this week, and
I'm sure my comp and other Elders and also you guys have been praying
for the cause of missionary work. His cause continues to move forward
because He's behind it.
Well, those aren't the only blessings we've seen this week, but I
don't have too much time to write any more. Tons of blessings in the
work, blessings to our investigators, blessings I've received
personally, etc.
Well, yeah, hope you guys all have a good week! Happy new years!!  Any way, ti a bo!!!! Love ya
all!! - ELder Seffker

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Coming unto Christ

This week has been good, we've had tons of stuff going on.
Elder M has been my companion for the last two transfers, then he
backup trained Elder B for three weeks, it's was us 4 in
the house. Now we're back down to 2 elders here, me and elder
b. I'm finishing up his 12 week training. We're way
excited. Anway, Elder M has been a way awesome companion. He
actually just got called as AP. It's really been good. He's been a way
good example and I've learned so much from him. Even though he doesn't
always include language study, or lunch in our daily schedule, haha,
we've had some good times, really grown close. I've really learned to
work On the time. Really learned to try hard. And to love the people,
and do all I can to help them in every way, and most crucially
important, coming unto Christ. Not that I nor Elder M are perfect,
but I feel I've grown a bit in those areas ever these past few months.
I've been with Elder H now for the last two weeks. It's been way
awesome as well. He's been out for 3 months. His language is doing
fantastic. He's already learned german, and italian anyway. He was in
the Navy for 1 or 2 years before he got on his mission. He's training
to become an officer. We've had some good times as well. We've learned
a lot from each other as well. I feel like I've grown a lot at being
my best self as I've been with him. We've had some really good lessons
with people as well. We had a new investigator, Kiteon, this week. He
seems pretty prepared. He accepted a book of mormon. Has started
praying, and is already in like 1 Nephi 9. Any way, we really felt the
Spirit in our last lesson on the Restoration. it was really powerful.
ANy way, sorry my time is almost up. Tia  bo!!!! - Elder Seffker Love
you all!!