Elder Kyle Shannon :)

Elder Kyle Shannon :)

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Lunch with a Famous Person


This past week has been pretty crazy. We were really busy doing different things. On Tuesday we had a specialized training which is pretty much just like a zone conference but not as long. Thankfully :) But it was really intense. President expressed that he does not like who we are as missionaries. He gave an analogy using flashlights. One of the flash lights was big and heavy but the the light was dim and wasn't very bright. The other one was small and the light was really bright. He than went on to say that we might think that if we have the big flash light that we will be able to see more and that the light will be brighter. But that's not always the case. Then he asked "if there is any one that doesn't want to be here I will be more than happy to send you home " He is the kind of guy that will convince you to stay because he loves you and wants you to be successful but now it’s
changed. He brought the hammer down on us. He always addresses obedience and stuff but he has never been as bold as he was. It was one of the more intense meetings I have been in. So that was good I guess you could say. 
Friday was really cool. I don't know if you payed attention in the Olympics this year but New Zealand isn't very good at anything but they have one person who does shot put and she is the best in the world. Her name is Valerie Adams. She took silver in shot put this year. It shocked everyone that she did't take gold this year. But anyways, She is also a member and she joined the church just a few years ago and is married in the temple which is sick. She also had a brother who is pretty famous as well. His name is Steven Adams, plays in the NBA for OKC and is doing pretty good. They are both New Zealands Crowned jewels you could say. 
One of our members had us over for lunch on Friday and they are pretty casual with us. They gave us the pass code to enter their house whenever we want for lessons or if we are hungry. So when we go there we don't knock, we just walk in. So we walk in and the first person we see is this huge girl in the kitchen making food and it turned out to be Valerie Adams! My Comp and I were shocked when we saw her. We had lunch with her and she was super cool. She was so chill. She is like 10 times my size. She is massive. Her Olympic ring was massive and cool. I don't have any pictures because I didn't take my camera with me. Normally I take it with me but I decided not to for some reason. I was so angry with my self afterwards. So you will just have to take my word for it that I actually met her. I also hugged Gifford Nielson. Yeah the one that played for BYU and For Houston in the NFL. He is part of the area presidency here. His ward is just before ours and while we were greeting people he was walking out and gave us a big ol' hug. So I have connections now lol. Those were some of the famous encounters I have had this week. 
The YSA ward is fun. The ward is really cool and the work is going pretty sweet. The only thing that is slow for us at the moment is getting people to sacrament meeting. Most of our investigators work on Sundays so they can't come to church which is super frustrating. So we will be teaching about the sacrament this week to all of our investigators. 
We found a street that is named after Brigham Young which was strange. I will include the picture with this email, but what are the odds of that happening? Randomly just a street named after a prophet?! 
Things are really exciting right now as we get closer to Christmas. We are going to the temple next week. Finally! Everyone is excited for that than we are just planning some activities with the zone for the weekend of Christmas. I really love the month of December as a missionary because it's a good time to do service. We have done heaps of service this month which has been sweet. Its been so much fun! So that is pretty much it  for me. Hope the week goes well. Love you heaps!

Elder Shannon

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Weekly Update :)

Kia Ora,

I will start off by apologizing that my subject to this email is really boring. I couldn't think of anything else to name it. But this week has been good. What I love most about the YSA ward is how involved everyone gets with everything. It’s a decent size ward. On average there is about 150 people that come every week which is good. The missionary work in the ward is awesome! It kinda has to be as well because its hard to find YSA age people that want to learn about the gospel. Most of our investigators are member referrals. It makes things super easy when the members are doing there part. The fellowship is awesome as well. The crazy thing is, is that we are the only missionaries assigned to the ward. Our area is so massive. We are talking to President about adding sisters as well to work with the sisters in the ward. 

What I really like so far is how fun they make everything. every other week we have rescue night, but they call it "Oreo night" We meet up and go visit people. Once we finish we meet back up and talk about our visits with bishop and than have Oreos and milk for dessert. So it’s pretty mean. 

When it comes to feeding the missionaries, It’s a struggle. Heaps of people sign up to feed us but end up canceling last minute. It gets pretty annoying but they are just your typical young single adults. But we can visit any members we want in any area which is sweet! So when someone cancels, we will just go to a member that we previously knew and ask them if they want to feed us. So it ends up working out in the end. 

Ward councils are freaking awesome as well. Once a month we will go to bishops house Sunday morning at 9 and we have breakfast with the ward council. After we eat we have our meeting and than go to church after that. I just really love it! Everyone is so cool. I don't have to try really hard to connect with the YSA because they understand. So that is such a huge relief.

Later in the week on Wednesday we had trade off’s with the assistants and I went with Elder Bass in their area. We had a good time on trade offs. We came out together and so it was cool and we just made each other really trunky the whole time. It was fun haha. Thursday was a hectic day for us. We did heaps of driving that day. We went all the way down to South Auckland for mcm at lunch, after that we had to come all the way back to where we live to visit a few more people.   After that we then had to go all the way out to West Auckland Where we did service for a less active. One thing I love about service projects here is they are done island style. They don't use as many tools and some of the tools they use are way different from what we use. One of the ones the use is a machete. I was hacking at a massive pile of vines with it and it was a hoot. I felt like the freaking man. We also use more of our hands. No gloves, no little gardening tools. Just you and the garden. It makes it more fun though. 

Friday we had this awesome lesson with a girl named Georgia who after became our new investigator. She is friends with one of our members who is a recent convert. We taught her the Plan Of Salvation and she loved it. I have honestly never seen someone get so excited as she did. The spirit was so strong and she was just loving it. Next time we will teach the restoration and invite her to be baptized. We are so excited and hope everything works out for us. All is well from my end. Things are going great. 

I love you heaps!

Elder Shannon

Crazy Week

November 13, 2016

Kia Ora

Man this week has been crazy. First off I have been working on getting a tan because I am way to white. Its coming along nicely I must say.  That been a positive for me this week. we had interviews this week and that was good. I feel bad for our mission President because he just looks so tired. we were the second to last zone to have ours and just from looking at him he just looked beat. He was tired from sitting down so when he was interviewing me he stood up the whole time and it was weird and kinda awkward. But I really enjoyed interviews.
Elections here were crazy! It’s crazy to think how much this election has not only effected America, but the whole world!! Some of the people are pretty upset that Trump won. It’s just crazy. Now that’s all people talk about when I am with them. I thought it was pretty
annoying when people would ask me about it before but now it’s just too much. 
On the other hand we had an awesome week with the work! We pumped it out this week. A way I like to check our progress in our area is by how many less actives and investigators come to church. We had a combined 10 less actives and Investigators at church this last Sunday. We were so pumped when sacrament meeting started and we saw
the chapel full. It is such a good feeling. Elder Ateo and I had to speak in sacrament meeting as well about missionary work. It was Elder Ateo's first time speaking in church in English and he smashed it. Before he went up he kept telling me how scared he was and that he was really nervous. But he did awesome. It’s been cool being able to help him and to see him improve. I just love the dude. Oh funny story, while we were driving we saw this kid on the foot path walking and while he was walking he was practicing his dabbing skills. it was crack up. We wanted to film it so bad but it all happened so fast. But
we were dying  after wards. 
We had a sweet lesson with Maria and Julius who are our investigators. We haven't seen them almost all transfer because they have been busy and they haven't come to church in 3 months. They were happy to see us and that honestly is such a good feeling when your investigators love seeing you. it just shows that they love you and its awesome. lets see thats all that happened this week. 
Today we are having our zone p-day and we are going to a beach to have a BBQ and play some touch so it will be pretty chill. Transfers are this week as well so we will find out what is happening. It will be interesting. 
Everything is good over here. I’m sure the people in America are slowly going to start to tear the country apart. Good thing I’m not there. Nah jokes but it’s funny because there isn't a single thing to worry about here in NZ. Honestly. nothing is wrong with the country. No one is ever killed, the cops are gangsta here and are just the nicest people. I just love it here. I wouldn't  mind living here. If I were to marry someone from here I would consider living here. so yeah thats me for the week. Love you heaps!

Elder Shannon

Sunday, October 23, 2016

An All Blacks Win!

Kia ora!

What a crazy week it has been. Not only for us but other events going on around Auckland. I will start from the beginning of the week. 
On Monday we played touch for ages which was really fun. We played for about 3 hours straight. On Tuesday we had district meeting. District meeting was really cool. I decided to change it up a little bit because I was starting to sense a lack of motivation from the missionaries in my district. So for the accountability part I had everyone get up by them selves and tell us why they are on a mission and what they want to accomplish while they are on there mission.  It was basically a testimony meeting. It turned out way better than I thought. It was a real spiritual district meeting. I just wanted to have everyone remember why they are out here and it seemed to have got them going.  
After that we talked about balancing out the fun and the work. That was another problem I noticed and the zone leaders noticed as well. Everyone kinda turned into boring missionaries and we wanted them to know that you can have fun on the mission while you are working. Because everyone who has served a mission will tell you its not easy, and having the moments of fun or whatever it is can turn your day around. Everyone within the district had a good response. So it was really awesome. 
Wednesday was cool as well. We got to go sit in on a lesson with one of the sister companionships in my district. it was probably the most awkward lesson I have been apart of on the mission. It was boring and the transitions between gospel points were really bad. It was hard to watch. Both of them are still new. Neither of them have been out 6 months yet. But it was just really awkward. I had the opportunity to interview their investigator afterwards because she was getting baptised. That was a catastrophe. 
Thursday we had to take our car in to replace the bumper. The missionaries before us didn't take good care of the car and so we had to deal with everything they didn't do which is frustrating. We won't get it back till sometime this week and than once we get it back we have to take it in to get it serviced. I'm starting to get the feel of what it will be like to own my own car and stuff. It's annoying but good to learn.
Saturday was cool. Our ward mission leaders daughter turned 8 and was baptised Saturday morning. After the baptism they put on a feed for everyone. And the amount of food that was there was unreal. It took a trailer and 3 vans to get all the food to the chapel. It was unreal. And not only that, the pots they were using for the food were about twice the size of a regular car tire. So we had a nice feed that afternoon. 
Later that night the All Blacks Played Australia her in Auckland. I have talked about what it is like when an All Blacks game is on but this was different. The stadium is about 10 minutes away from where we live. There is no parking at all. Everything within a mile of the stadium they block of and every source of transportation is dedicated to getting people to and from the game. Not only that but they were playing the Wallabies (Australia). That is Like BYU and Utah playing each other. Imagine what the state of Utah is like when they play. It’s the same here for the All Blacks vs Australia. It’s nuts.
This morning we went to a baptism which was pretty good and that’s why this email is a bit latter. Thats my week. I still haven't got my garments. We should be getting mail next week so. yeah. I love you heaps!

Elder Shannon

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Ward Harvest


I don't have much time this week so I will try and squeeze in everything I can. This week was really frustrating for us. Trying to contact all the investigators that we are working with has become almost impossible. They are never home or they won't answer there
phone. It has really slowed the work down for us and its frustrating because when things were getting good it suddenly turns on us. 
There was a night this last week when I hardly slept because it was bothering me so bad and I felt like I wasn't doing everything I could.  But I had to remind my self that I can't control everything that happens. We are planning on doing a "Ward Harvest" where our ward will get together on a Saturday and tract out our whole area, or as much of it as we can. That will help us out heaps and we hope it works out. That’s how the work is going and stuff.

You wanna know what grinds my gears? Is when people ask me who I am voting for as if I am going to vote. I'm like bruh, I ain’t got time for that. And then they update me on what's happening. It gets kinda annoying. Like if I was back home I would love to watch it but some of the people have no idea what is really going on with the whole thing and they don't get it. That’s all people want to talk about when they find out I'm from America. 

We have interviews coming up in a few weeks which I am excited about. Honestly If our mission president isn't a member of the seventy when he gets back I might throw a huge fit. Not really, but he has the potential for sure.  Just the way he carries himself and how he does things. Everyone has a huge respect for him. 

For the rest of the day we will be playing touch with the other missionaries and some of our members. That’s all we really ever do. We don't have to worry about washing because we just do it at our flat whenever we want so it’s nice. Sorry for the lack of pictures as well.  I will improve on that this next week. That’s all I have time for today. Sorry it’s not the usual and that I didn't answer all of your questions. I love you heaps and hope you have a good week!

Elder Shannon

Monday, October 10, 2016

General Conference!!

Kia Ora!

This week has been pretty solid. There wasn't a whole lot of time for proselyting due to it being transfer week and General Conference. So yeah transfers… Elder Ateo and I are both staying which we are excited about. The more my companion talks the funnier he is. Missionaries or returned missionaries that have had comps from Tahiti say that they
are always funny. It is finally starting to show from my companion as well. So its been good for him to get more comfortable with his English. 
One of the missionaries in my district got called to be a District Leader. And when Elders go into leadership, they get a hiding from the other missionaries. Normally it’s a stick to the bum. It’s the way islanders do things. So we gave him 2 solid smacks on the bum with
a stick. I was honored to be able to give him a good ol' wack. So that was fun. The Zone leader one is bad, You get it from every Elder in the zone. 
Tuesday to Thursday I was helping out with transfers with in the zone. Helping people pack, clean, take them places, etc… About half our zone got transferred out which was pretty sad. We were a pretty close zone and super united. It effected everyone within the
zone, so yeah.  
The only day we had to proselyte was Friday. Because of the time difference we got conference a week later so we had that this weekend. I just really love General Conference. It was so nice to have it based around missionary work and the book of Mormon. Almost every talk nailed it for each member in NZ and what they should be
One of my favorite talks was from Carl B. Cook. Everything he covered was prefect! Just simply serving and helping each other with in the ward and outside. So I really enjoyed that. There were some things that I could also do better in as well as a missionary. Man
that's all that happened this week. Just really busy with transfers and General Conference. 
Ever since I was sick a few weeks ago I haven't been able to eat as much which is good. But I have been eating a lot lately so…
To answer your question mom - There have been several instances where I have been prompted to do something. Like if we aren't in the car and we are out walking, I will
be prompted to go knock on a house that we pass by and when we knock no one answers or they are not interested. I think it is the spirit testing me to see if I am paying attention. But there have been several instances where I have born testimony and stuff just comes out that I don't even know. It’s the strangest most weird feeling. So yeah. That’s all I have for this week. Sorry I don't have much more to say. 
I love you heaps!

Elder Shannon

Picture of the Tongan Crest -

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Spring Cleaning!


This week has been pretty crummy. I was sick for most of the week. I got some stomach virus and it caused my body to clean its self out. So that was fun ): …not. But it is just in time for spring. It’s almost spring here and I just want winter to end because I hate the rain. But yeah, my body did a spring cleaning. It caused me to miss a zone training which was a bummer. I'm doing a lot better now though.  

Nothing really happened this week with me being sick. I did how ever get to watch Ephraim's rescue. It’s cool to see him using the gifts God gave him to help and serve others. But what really stuck out to me is the way he treats his priesthood. Every time before he gave a blessing he would wash his hands to signify that the priesthood isn't something we should take lightly. You have to be worthy and clean to hold and even administer. I just really love that he washes his hands to show that.

This week is the last week of the transfer which is weird! It went by so fast. I will most likely be staying in this area with Elder Ateo.  It will be good to stay here with him again. I love when a new month starts and we get our meal roster for the month of who is feeding us.  This month will be good. The members that put there names down put on
massive feeds which is sweet. I'm doing really well at maintaining my weight. My body doesn't want to get any bigger which is sweet hahah. The weather is slowly starting to get warmer. It will get there eventually.

Here's a cool story. So there is this professional boxer named Joseph Parker. He is and active member of the church and is the freaking man at boxing. Only the people here in the Pacific really know about him but he is starting to get big. He is way more talented than everyone down here and is looking for competition for overseas. He has a fight coming up in November against Anthony Joshua who is from the UK and is really good. Joseph Parker is the underdog. But if he wins it will put him on the map! What I am getting at is it is cool that there are some really freaking cool members out in this world that do awesome things. He lives in our mission too. Hopefully I will get to serve in his
stake sometime because that would be really cool.

Elder Shannon

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Rain Rain Go Away!

Kia Ora

There is no better way to start a week than by seeing a miracle. So once P-day ended at 6 we went with some other missionaries Elder Kaese and Elder Shem to give a blessing to a less active family in there ward. We get there and the family is there. They are a pretty young family of four.  The Parents in there 30's and the kids are under the age of 10. The father starts telling us that they want to try to come back to church and want us to give them a blessing to help. Elder Ateo and Elder Shem don't have very good English and neither of them wanted to give a blessing because they were nervous about their English. So Elder Kaese did 2 of the blessings and I did another. At this point we still have to give the husband a blessing. For his blessing I thought I was going to give it. As he gets up he stands next to my companion and puts his arm around him and asked him to do it. Elder Ateo said that his English wasn't very good and he doesn't know how to give a blessing in English. The father shares his experience when he gave his first Priesthood blessing and tells him that the spirit has prompted him to have him give the blessing. It was really cool and he eventually got my companion to do it. And let me tell you, there wasn't a word that was miss pronounced or that wasn’t understood. It was honestly one of the coolest blessings I have ever been a part of. The gift of tongues is REAL! It was such an awesome experience to be a part of and to see the spirit work through my companion. The spirit was so strong. After  the blessing was over the father gets up and gives Elder Ateo the biggest hug. Tears were flowing. Freak it was just really cool. When we got back in the car we all started freaking out and going crazy because we were so pumped for my companion. So that was a cool experience from this past week.

Now to my week. We had some solid appointments this past week. It was one of our more busy weeks which was really satisfying. We still need to sort out the baptism of Jasmine because she didn't come to church this last week so we have to push it back. So that shouldn't be a problem. Once Sunday came around Elder Ateo and I were expecting 5 investigators to come to church. Church starts and none of our investigators have showed up. It was one of the most disappointing Sundays I have had on the mission. It was weird because all of them said they would come. We at least thought 3 of them would be there.
But none of them were there which was weird. So that is that. 

But let me tell you. I am getting so sick of the rain. I hate New Zealand winter. It’s not that it’s too cold but it just rains heaps and doesn’t stop. It was annoying all week long. I can't wait for summer to hit.  It’s so close. Oh and it was daylight savings for us this last weekend too. So that was alright. But that’s the week.

Elder Shannon

Sunday, September 18, 2016

The Book of Mormon

Kia Ora

This past week was really good. We had Zone Conference on Tuesday this last week and it was one of the more enjoyable ones that I have been in. We talked about the book of Mormon a lot which was really cool and we talked about how it has influenced our lives and related to us instead of just our investigators. It helped give a different perspective on it. 
We also have a baptism coming up and that end of the month which is sweet. It’s jasmine and Riley. I don't know if I have talked about them before but its a mother and her oldest son who is 15. Her other kids were baptized when they were in Niue. They are keen as to getting baptized so we are excite for that. 
We also found a new investigator in the strangest way. We were sitting in church yesterday and just after the sacrament was passed, this young Asian fella walks in. And when he walked in I looked towards the  bishopric to see what their reaction was to some random guy walking in. Their faces were
a crack up hahaha. They lit up so fast and were kinda confused at the same time. That was pretty funny, anyways to continue. After sacrament meeting we went up to talk to him and he told us that he is looking for a place to worship and he found our chapel. Now the reason this is so weird and strange is because if I were to be looking for a chapel to go worship at. Ours would probably be the last. Its pretty hidden behind a few houses and there's a long drive way you have to drive through to get there. So the fact that he saw it was incredible. But it was awesome because our members were on top of it. One of our
members grabbed him during the 3rd hour and took him to the primary and the youth and some of the other classes that were going on and it really intrigued him. So it was really cool. And the cool thing with this member is him and is wife have only been married for a year now and have no kids yet. But they had him over for lunch after church and had a talk with him  They gave him a book of Mormon and committed him
to read it and he accepted. So we haven't done jack and the dude already has a book of Mormon and wants to keep coming to our church. It’s freaking awesome. So that was like a miracle that, that happened. Oh and his name is Taeo. I forgot that haha. But things are going sweet right now. 
Elder Ateo and I had a pretty trunky moment this past week as well. Every week we go to see this old less active lady who is like 85. She is always giving us good words of wisdom. But this particular time she talked about finding a spouse and just always loving them and all this other stuff. It freaking killed me. My goodness. Elder Ateo and I talked about it afterwards and it made us both so trunky. Freak it was bad. It took us a few days to get over ha. But thats about all the happened this week. It was a good one. I love you heaps and hope you have a great week!

Elder Shannon

Me trying to feed a cow

Cake in the face

Just some good looking Elders

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Things Are Coming Together Nicely

Kia Ora

Things have been pretty solid this past week. The work is starting to progress a lot more right now which is good. Our members are slowly starting to get better. We were having lunch with one of our members on Saturday and they were telling us that a previous missionary who was in this ward was pretty rude and was just being a prideful American as we all are. He just took things to far in things he said and said that this ward isn't as good as others. It really killed it for most of the members and I am pretty sure that is why it is a struggle. But the good thing is is the member we had lunch with was the first time they had missionaries over since then and that was like a year ago. so we are establishing the trust between us and the members which is really good. So that’s kinda the situation with our members.

We have found 2 new investigators this past week. One is an Asian brotha and the other is an Indian lady. Auckland is a very diverse place. So that was really good for us. We are hoping to start teaching them this week. We have 2 people who we could potentially set for baptism this month and we are also hoping to do that this week as well. Things have started to go our way this past week. Elder Ateo is starting to open up a lot more which is really good. It’s helping him a lot with his English.

We had stake conference this weekend and I really just love stake conference on the mission. Our President Balli always comes to each stake conference and he gives talks like he's an apostle. Its so freaking awesome. I just love the man. I’m pretty sure everyone says
that about their mission president. Mission presidents are cool. 

We have zone conference this upcoming week. Zone conference is good. It just takes all day and you get so exhausted afterwards which is weird. Oh here is something interesting, well I think its interesting. You probably won’t. But it has been a while since I have cut the top of my hair. I normally just cut the sides and grow out the top. When I got out of the shower this morning I was playing with my hair while it was wet and I pulled it down to see how long it is and it goes to the bottom of my eyes which is pretty long haha. So I decided I need to get a haircut so I will be doing that today. I just thought you should know because thats like the longest my hair has ever been. 

That is pretty much my week. Here is a picture of us at a hidden beach we
found on a cloudy day (:

Elder Shannon

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Happy Father's Day!!

Kia ora

Well I don't really know where to start this email. Not much has been happening for us this past week. Its been pretty hard lately in our area. Trying to find new people to teach is been a struggle and all of the investigators we have aren't really progressing right now. So we have been trying really hard to work with the members in our ward but all they do is talk about missionary work and don't do it. It’s really frustrating. In our ward council I asked if we could go around to each auxiliary for 20 minutes on the 1st and 2nd Sunday of each month and talk to them and role play with them. 
Right now we have been really focusing with the young men and the primary because the young men like to help us and they know it will help them for when they go serve and the primary kids don't think about the things they do so if you ask them to do something they will do it and show no fear because that's how kids are haha. We are hoping this approach works because the adults just frustrate me. But it’s good for my companion to get to experience missionary work the hard way. My first area was pretty solid. South Auckland is booming with baptisms and really is the only thing that keeps our mission going. So missionary work started off pretty easy for me. With Elder Ateo it’s really good for him and he has a super positive attitude towards everything. He is so humble like any islander you will meet. And to be honest heaps of the white people just frustrate me especially some other missionaries because they can be pretty prideful sometimes. 
Being trained by someone from the Islands helped me realize how pride full Americans and white people really are. So I am really hoping to give him a good experience. To be honest he is better than my last son I trained.  Mainly because he is an islander. His English is coming along really well which is good. He can speak pretty good but has trouble understanding what people say. But it’s algood. I’m starting to get used
to it.

Also this last weekend was fathers day. At least it is in New Zealand ha, so there has been a lot of fathers day activities going on. Something cool I have started doing since I hit my year mark last month is that I have been reading my journal entries from the first half of my mission. I read 1 a day and the one I read is the same day a year ago. Its weird to see how much change has happened in me. The amount of knowledge I have received and all the miracles I have had. Thats been really cool to do.

The month of September is going to be challenging for me because our zone is trying to beat the record of 18 baptisms. That was set 5 years ago in 2011. Our zone leaders really want to try and accomplish that this month! They have put heaps of pressure on me and the other district leader to help make this happen. So it will be tough in trying to get my district to accomplish this. The good thing is that I got the Lord on my side. But thats pretty much all from this last week. I hope you have a good week and I will definitely pray that someone will buy our house. Love ya heaps!

Elder Shannon

Sunday, August 28, 2016

He is My Brother

Malo Lelei

Man this week has been super busy. It was transfer week and so much was going on. Because my companion was going home there was a lot of things that needed to get done and we had to drive every where. I did a lot of driving this last week, I am pretty sick of driving at this point. 
Tuesday night I said goodbye to my companion which was pretty sad. In my mission family he is my brother and that is what our relationship felt like. We talked to each other like we had no each other our while lives. It was so cool. He legit felt like an older brother to me. So I will miss him a lot. But the work must go on. 
This transfer I will be training again for the second time which I still don't know how I feel about. I was hoping to be with an experienced missionary. The ward we are in is kinda sick of new missionaries and it needs someone who is a little more experienced. But its algood. 
My companion is Elder Ateo. He is from Tahiti which is cool. He speaks French so you know I will be learning some French this transfer. He is the freaking man! He is awesome. He English isn't very good though so it makes difficult to communicate. I just have to talk slower and change the way I talk. I will be quite the test for me but I excited because once you know you are going to experience something hard, you will learn from it. It just comes down to my attitude. I am really excited because he is really cool and new  missionaries always have a good desire to go out and work which is a good remainder for me to remember to stay positive even when it can be hard. He is super funny too. He doesn't talk much but when he does its always something funny haha. 
We didn't have much time for proselyting this weak due to sorting out everything for transferrers and such. We can’t use our car this week because I have gone way over the K allotment and We have to wait till the start of the new month till the K's reset.  
Right now we are trying to work really close with the members in our ward to help us with finding and so every 1st and 2nd Sunday of the month we teach each auxiliary about missionary work and how they can help. We do role plays and give them different scenarios on how they can invite friends, family, work mates... and so on. 
Oh yeah I am back to district leader again which I am kinda bummed about because I like not having to worry about anyone else. I get to just do missionary work. But it’s algood. I will make it fun and enjoyable. 
Our zone is pretty cool. Everyone is really close with each other and it makes the work a lot more fun because we are all willing to help each other. Not much has happened this week. NO crazy stories or anything like that. Just pretty normal so I will leave it at that. 
I hope you have a great week. 

Love ya!

Elder Shannon

Sunday, August 21, 2016

It's About Time!

My oh my! What a great week it was. The highlight of our week was the baptisms we had on Saturday. It was such a good feeling just being able to be a part of the baptism and to teach these people. It honestly has felt so good. The hard work pays off. And to make it better its been a year and a half since this ward has had a baptism and our ward was just really excited. All we have been doing all week is just making sure everything is algood for the baptism. The cool thing is is that our zone has a total of 12 set for baptism this month which is super high for us and so we have all been helping each other out cleaning the baptismal font which haven't been used in ages. 
This last Saturday we just went to baptisms all day that were going on in the zone which was cool. All the missionaries in the zone are just buzzing right now because of all that has happened and that is coming up for us. 
On Sunday our ward mission leader put on a massive feed for us and our investigators that got baptised. He got like 3 pigs and roasted them which was mean. But freak there was so much food. The good thing is, is that my body doesn't want to get fat so I have been able to eat heaps and not have me grow out ward in size. That’s been a plus for me. 
We have transfers this week and I will find out who my new companion is tonight. I also got to see my mission parents last night! It was good to see them again. They were in my last area and I got pretty close with them. We got to catch up last night as well with my last companion and we talked about all the memories we had the 3 transfers we were together. 
I am running short on time today because it is our zone p day and we are doing the olympics today which will be pretty fun. I don't think there is anything else that I am missing from this past week. I am feeling truly blessed for all that I have experienced so far and the blessings I have been able to see from serving the Lord. 
Here are the pictures from this last week. 
Love ya heaps

Elder Shannon 

Sunday, August 14, 2016

It's Been a Good Week


Well this past week has been really good. This transfer has gone by really fast and it’s just been crazy! My companion Elder Chong-nee goes home next week and he is getting pretty trunky which makes me trunky and the cycle goes on haha. It’s a good trunky, not the lazy one. We have been working very hard. 
We had our “annual” FHE with Maria and Julius. That was alright, nothing interesting really happened, but we had another lesson with them on Wednesday and that was mean. We taught the Gospel of Jesus Christ to them. And was a really good lesson for Maria. We talked more about the blessings that come from baptism. She expressed to us that she didn't think she would be able to live up to the covenant that we make when we are baptised and I started thinking about what I could share with her. I couldn't think of anything so I decided to use the good ol' Book Of Mormon. We shared with her Ether 12:6, that’s talking about faith. We receive a witness after the trail of our faith. It really got her thinking and than her husband said she was ready to be baptised! She is just too scared to do it! But she has been thinking about it. Oh and this was pretty cool. The next morning she texted us "Alma 37:37 have a blessed day Elders, thanks for all you do." When my companion and I saw this we were like "what the heck?" It was cool that she is texting us scriptures from the Book Of Mormon. On sunday after church they invited us over for lunch and we got talking about there daughters baptism and Maria was asking if people have been baptised last minute and stuff like that. So she is legit just playing with our minds right now like every freaking girl on the planet earth does! But we really really think she will get baptised this week! We are just really holding out. 

Anyways, that is that. Eva and Ma'u are still algood for there baptism this Saturday and we are excited for that. We also had interviews with President this week. And my oh my it was awesome! I have had some questions that I have been waiting to ask him and it was good to finally get some answers. But I had a good time with President Balli. We had a few laughs. But what really made my week was when he started talking about my past companions and he asked "how many of my companions have been either from the islands or Australia?" And I said "I have only have had 1 comp from the states and the rest have been from the pacific." He later asked if I had kept in contact with any of them and I said no. (And by the way 5 of them have finished) So he went on to say that he wants me to contact them sand just see how they are doing and so he said I could get on facebook to do so! So I was shocked when he said that. He said he is slowly going to start letting some missionaries use facebook now and I am one of them so I am pumped. The only thing is we can't browse around. But this allows me to talk to my trainer who finished last November and so I am so happy. Our morning work out is still awesome. We had a solid boxing session this morning that just beat the crap out of our bodies. The dude just made us punch the bag as fast as we could. Its a good cardio work out for the upper body and I am so sore right now. Good thing it’s fun our else it would suck, it’s just hard. But that’s all from this week!

Elder Shannon

Why Don't You Understand?

Kia Ora 

Well This week was build ups. And what I mean by that is the week was a let down. So Last Monday we had that FHE with our investigators. It didn't go the way we hoped. We always take our ward mission leader with us to build the fellowship. Freak the dude just talked the whole time and didn't give us any time to share anything that would help them. It was so annoying. Like it was algood talking and stuff but he just talked to long. So when we set another appointment with them on Thursday. 
So we go on Thursday. We get there and we told them we were going to teach the Restoration. And they have been taught every lesson about 4 times in  the past few years. And they are very bible oriented people. So the first question that arises is about Joseph Smith. "Where is Joseph Smith in the bible? Why Joseph Smith? Isn't there someone else who new more about Jesus Christ?" They wanted proof other than the book of Mormon. But the answer to that question is the book of Mormon. So it was super tough and we didn't really know how to respond. They just kept asking question after question. We had some good discussions but it just wasn't getting through to them. So we didn't really accomplish anything with them. But when we got to our car we started talking about how it went and my companion and I both said we had other things we wanted to bring up but they went to fast for us. It was so frustrating. We wanted to tell them that in order to know the truth you have to read and pray about the Book of Mormon. And if it is true, than Joseph Smith is a prophet. But we didn't get the chance to say it. So using our 3 years of experience we came up with a plan for tonight when we go see them. They want to learn but just struggle gaining the faith and trust to do it. Maria is ready for baptism. She is very involved in Sunday school which is cool and really loves it! She would be such a good member. Its just her husband that can be kind of an egg. But they really like having us over. They are just scared to do anything. So hopefully tonight we can see some progress. So that's Maria & Julius. 
Ma'u our other investigator is the man. He is 9 years old and just loves having us over. He is super funny. He is getting baptised on the 20th so we are excited about that. Also this last week we went on trade off with the zone leaders because one of them was sick and they had some important appointments to go to so I went with One of them into there area. That was good. Friday we did a service project for like 4 hours. All the elders in the zone helped paint a house. It was pretty fun. It just took ages. 
Our morning workouts are so cool. I love it because I'm learning how to box and I feel like I'm jacked afterwards. It builds you upper body really fast. But if there is anyone to pray for its our investigators Maria & Julius. We really want them to get baptised because they really like coming to church and being with all the members. 
That’s about all this week though. I can’t think of anything else to say or talk about. Yeah thats all I got haha. 

Love ya heaps! 

Elder Shannon

Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Wait is Killing Me!

Kia Ora

I would first like to say happy birthday to you mom! I'm pretty sure it was on Saturday? I hope you had a good birthday. 

This past week has been killer. Like mentally. Last Monday we had an FHE with Maria & Julius. They our our investigators right now. They expressed to us a few weeks ago they would like there daughter to get baptised. So last Monday we wanted to try to get the parents on board as well. We had our bishop come with us. All we did for 2 and a half hours was talk about religion. They both have been a part of a few religions and said they liked them but some of the things they did didn't make sense or they found faults in the other churches. Then they started talking about our church and how everyone love each other. They like how it is all organized and they really appreciate when someone is falling away that we do something to help them get back on the path. They said other religions say they will do that but don't. So that stuck out to them about it. 
Towards the end of the night out of nowhere they asked us about what baptism was like and what happens after baptism. We were shocked and they were super excited to talk about it! So we explained it to them and they just said they really want there daughter to get baptised. Ha and Maria loved that you get a membership number after you are baptised haha it was pretty funny. We all laughed. Then we felt we should invite them to be baptised as well so we did. We encouraged them to pray and ponder about it. They were so interested in finding out if this is right for them. The spirit was so strong and it was honestly one of the happiest moments of my life. No, it was the happiest I have ever felt. I just want to see them in white so bad! They are such a cool family. We find out if they want to get baptised tonight and Elder Chong-nee and I were anxiously waiting for Monday to come for that very reason. It was awesome! So hopefully it goes well tonight. 
Ever since our ward conference last weekend there has been a huge increase in the ward with missionary work and it’s starting to really help us out more. Members really want to come out with us and do splits which is awesome. What I love about the members here, especially the real islanders that come straight from Samoa or Tonga is they will do anything for missionaries. We got back to our flat one night for dinner and realized we had no food and no money. So we called one of our members to see if they would get us food. (And no its not rude that we are doing this, It would be rude not to) Our member took us to KFC and bought us heaps of food haha. But I just really appreciated it because we were so flipping hungry and islanders are just really cool. 
We are also teaching our ward mission leaders nephew who never got baptised for some reason. He is 9 years old. He is the man! He is so fun to teach and he really wants to learn. He asked if we could help him with his testimony in the Duty to God booklet or something like that. But he really wanted to write it out. I love teaching kids. You just make the lesson really fun. So we have been busy with lessons and trade offs with our members. It has been an awesome week. The work is hastening in the Blockhouse Bay area! 
We also had a mission tour. It’s pretty much a zone conference but we had our new area president there with us which was pretty cool. It was super spiritual and he gave some great advice. So that was cool. I think you will think this is pretty cool. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday we go to our members house to do some boxing! He trains us. It’s so cool. We don't fight each other for obvious reasons but we do the type of training boxers do. Its super hard and it’s the quickest way to get big. So my comp and I will be massive hopefully ha. Ok not massive but there will be some increase in muscle. That’s pretty much my week.

To answer your questions, Heaps of islanders have family in the states. Especially Utah and California. There are more people who want to play football here and so I have come across a few that want to go play football at BYU. Anyways thats all I got. I love you heaps!

Elder Shannon