Elder Kyle Shannon :)

Elder Kyle Shannon :)

Sunday, August 30, 2015

My First Haka!

This week was stake conference for us.  And when I say "week" I mean its a week full of different events!  Tuesday they did a thing called "Rescue Night".  The whole stake gets together and they put people into groups and than give them names of people or families who are less active and we go out to say “hi” and share a message!  It was awesome to see so many members out doing the work as well.  Wednesday was a huge stake youth mutual.  I'm not sure what they did exactly but all of the youth said it was fun!  

On Friday, which was so cool! Each ward was given a year that they had to come up with a dance for.  Each ward went all out on it!  All the performances were amazing!  Our stake President wanted the missionaries to be a part of it so we ended up doing the Haka!  I've never been more pumped up in my life. Doing the haka you just let everything out and the adrenaline gets pumping and it feels so good. It’s cool because one of the Elders made this haka and it’s based off the Book of Mormon and the stripling warriors. 
President Balli heard that we did this and we told him we want it to be something the whole mission can learn and we can make it for the mission.  He is considering doing it which would be so sick!  

Saturday we had a service project in the morning.  We then had a priesthood leadership meeting @ 3, which was very interesting on many different levels haha. Then we had the first session of stake conference at 6 which was mean! (sick) They had converts to the church bear there testimonies which were amazing! Its much different here, almost every member is a convert. You don't find a lot of people who grew up in the church. It just shows that people do need to hear this gospel no matter who they are, how old they are, or what they've done. On Sunday we just had our second session of stake conference.  Later that night they would finish the week off with a musical fireside.  The fireside was pretty freaking awesome!  They go all out on everything here!  You can tell how much the gospel means to them by the effort they put in for things like musical firesides and stuff.  

Our new investigator we have is awesome.  He's still wanting to be baptized and you can tell he's excited.  Our ward is doing a good job of helping us and making sure youth reach out to him so it makes our job much easier.  The food here just keeps getting better and better.  I can tell I’m putting on weight but that's good cause that motivates me to work out so it balances each other out.(: 

It’s hard to describe everything that happens cause there is just so much!  Everything is going great.  My two companions are awesome.  Everything feels good.  Oh I got food poisoning on Wednesday which sucked so we stayed home for most of the day, but other than that its good and I’m still learning a butt load of stuff.  I love you all!  Keep it real!

Elder Shannon

P.S.  E moni le ta lalelei (the church is true)  ☺

Monday, August 24, 2015

I'm in New Zealand and You're Not

Kia Ora
All week I was thinking about how you guys were in Lake Powell. My heart melted a little bit inside. But its alright because I'm in New Zealand and you guys aren't! ha...jokes on you!  I am the minority in my zone right now but its totally cool! South Auckland is where all the Samoan and Tongans are so when they see an American missionary they get excited because they aren't used to seeing white Americans so its kinda funny. It gets us in more houses! 

I'm getting along with all the other missionaries just fine, we are all like best friends. It's so awesome! I forgot to tell you im in a trio too haha, the other one is Elder Ratu, he is a Visa waiter to go to Vanuatu. I love both my companions and we have a ton of fun together. We get work done too. 

Because our area is small we walk everywhere and by the end of the day I want to cut my feet off. We are always out and about talking with everyone we see about the gospel. That's what I love about the area I'm in.  It's pretty poor here and a lot of these people need the gospel in there lives and you can tell they want to hear our message. When we meet someone new and we are trying to get to know them they will start telling us there problems they have and it makes me happy because that opens the door to share the gospel with them! 

I had a cool experience this last week.  My companions asked me what our goal should be for the week and I told them we need to find a new investigator. The next day we find a 15 year old boy who wanted to know about the gospel. We invited him to be baptized and he said he would love too! So he wants to get baptized on his birthday in September!! I'm so excited for this kid! We've only taught him one lesson so far and that was the restoration. But things are looking good and I'm so excited. 

The end of the week last week did get kinda slow with talking to people and we weren't having much success. It really got to me and I didn't know what to do. On the inside I felt down on my self, but on the outside I seemed to still have a smile on my face. I don't know how else to explain it. I know the Lord is watching over me and I can feel his love. Its so crazy all of the different emotions you can feel in such a short amount of time. 

Oh, on Saturday the zone leaders had a baptism for two of there investigators and it was cool to see that on my second Saturday here. Afterwards there was a massive Samoan dinner. My plate was almost a foot high in food. No joke!!! So many different types of meat! I ended up having Pig, Horse, 4 different types of chicken and 3 different kinds of fish! It was so freaking good! 

With being in a trio and living with the zone leaders I get to go on trade offs with the zone leaders sometimes so its cool because its more opportunities for me to teach. Man Its hard to describe everything thats happened in the past week. 

Sunday was sweet, after church and a few meetings we went over to a members house for an FHE activity and the dad is in a band thats pretty popular I forget their name but they are way good. Anyways...when we went over to his house he had a mixer, and so he taught me how to use it and it was so sick! We had a little jam session together. 

Thats' my week! Tell everyone I miss them a bunch and I love them! 

Elder Shannon      

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Kira Ora

Kia Ora
Wow. What a week! Wednesday morning at 8 am we left the MTC. President and his wife were there to pick us up along with the AP's. They brought a few vans for all of us to fit in. The first place we went to was One Tree Hill. Its a look out point that looks out over all of Auckland! It was beautiful. After which we went to the mission office and did a bunch of boring stuff there. 
Thursday was the day we got to meet our companions. There was a big mission conference that day where every missionary from the whole mission was there! 
My companions name is Elder Faamau, he's Samoaen and about 5'9 300 lbs. Everyone knows who he is, thats the kind of guy he is and super funny. But he is awesome and so chill. I love him! Like he is so sweet! 
After we met our companions Pres. Balli and his wife spoke and than he made me share my testimony in front of the whole mission!! Thats in front of 200 plus missionaries!!! But it went really well. 
Oh and this is scary. After they told me who my companion was I was told that I was going to have to drive!! like WTFreak!!! I was so scared! I had to drive about 30 miles to get to our area. It was hard. Trying to get used to driving on the other side of the road is weird but I'm used to it now. 
The area I'm in is Otara. Its the smallest zone in the whole mission. Its pretty ghetto here in this area. But when we got to our flat (home) the zone leaders got the whole zone together to welcome me. Thats when I found out I'm the only white guy out of the 10 Elders in my zone haha. But we all got together and had a bunch of food and than they made a haka about the Book of Mormon that they performed for me which was sick! 
All the Elders in the zone are so cool and when we aren't out proselyting we are all just hanging out! its awesome. Then on Friday me and my companion were able to go out and do the Lords work. That's all Saturday was too. But its awesome to share the gospel with these people cause some of these people need the gospel in there lives because they are struggling. The people are ready for it in my zone. 
Yesterday was Sunday for us and church was different.They have wards out here. I got to share my testimony again this time in front of the ward! After church we went to a members house to have lunch. It was a tongan meal and it was amazing! They fed us so much food but it was dang good! The ice cream down here is way better. By heeps too! its insane haha. 
Man this is all so weird. I'm really enjoying it so far. It is awesome out here. The elders out here know how to have fun but at the same time they work hard! My zone is the highest baptizing zone in the mission. But yeah, everything is good. I couldn't be happier right now! its awesome! I'm going to send some pics in a sec. But I miss all of you and love you! 
Elder Shannon

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Welcome to New Zealand Elder Shannon!

Elder Shannon and President and Sister Balli

 New Missionary's and President and Sister Balli

Monday, August 10, 2015

I Can't Wait to Get Out in the Field!!

Today is or last day at the MTC. We leave tomorrow on Wednesday, Tuesday for you guys. 
My companion is Elder Brown. He is from Utah, I'm still with everyone I flew out with which is awesome because we have all become great friends over the past few weeks. 
The flight here was super long. I got about a total of 7 hours of sleep on the plane. When we got to the MTC it was pretty relaxed. They let us go to bed 2 hours before everyone else who was here which was nice. 
My teachers have been awesome! They’ve helped me a lot throughout the past week. So everything right now is awesome! I struggled at first being away from home. I didn’t think it was possible to pray as many times I have throughout a day. Its crazy!!! I cant wait to go out in the field! Time flew by! 
My testimony has grown so much over the past 12 days and im excited to teach the gospel. I sent home a picture of everyone who is at the MTC so you will probably be getting it sometime this week! Man, I wish I could tell you guys everything that has happened so far but theres so much and I could go on forever! I'm short on time but I love you guys and I miss you! I can't wait to be out in the field to share this gospel with everyone in New Zealand! 
Oh duh I forgot to tell you, we went to the temple this week and it was awesome!! The drive down to Hamilton was beautiful! Everything is so green. Okay ha got to go!

Elder Shannon

Monday, August 3, 2015

MTC Life

Hey, so I'm on my 5th day so far in the MTC. Getting used to being away from home is hard but I know why I'm out here and I won't let it distract me. 

Everything is good though.  I'm learning a lot everyday. I didn't think it was gonna be this crazy. We sit in class for a good 14 hours a day and learn the same thing for the 14 hours. They really like to drill the material into our heads! I really wish I was just out in the field already.  The classroom gives you a lot of time to think about stuff like home. So I just try to keep myself busy. 

They feed us a lot here and the food is awesome.  In fact they feed us so much that we are required to get 1 hour of physical exercise a day, which means we get to play rugby everyday which is pretty cool. 

I'm pretty short on time today but when im out in the field I will have more time to write. Tell everyone I say hi and that I love them!

The Enos District

Everyone who reported to the MTC on July 30th