Elder Kyle Shannon :)

Elder Kyle Shannon :)

Monday, July 24, 2017

LAST EMAIL

Kia Ora

Oh my gosh! This is all so crazy. My last email. I honestly never thought this day would come. I honestly wish it hasn’t yet, but it is. I am so excited but at the same time I really don't want to go. I didn't ever think I would love these people so much to the point where I don't want to come back to white people haha. It’s true tho. I know I am going to miss this place like crazy. 
This past week has been full of goodbyes. And it still hasn't kicked in at all yet that I am leaving. Yesterday members were giving me gifts and stuff and it started to kick in a little bit then when that was happening. Tonight will be pretty mean. Our members are doing an FHE to send me out which will be pretty cool. I’m just going to miss the people hard out. 
Man I don't know how to put it into words how I feel right now. I would like to say how blessed I have been throughout these 2 years and all that I have been able to learn from the mission. Even just this past week we had miracles happen. That is one thing I am going to miss is seeing the miracles every single day. 
But I really don't have much else to say right now. I am Just excited to see the family again. Hahaha… I still feel like I have another year left. Tomorrow I go to the mission home and we have interviews with President and a little orientation about coming home and then we have lunch and then we go to the airport. So today I will just be packing and getting every thing ready for tomorrow. 
I love you heaps and I am so excited to see the fam’s again.


Elder Shannon





Tuesday, July 18, 2017

See you Next Week!

Kia Ora!

Holy heck this is all getting so weird. This is my second to last email! It still hasn't even come close to kicking in that I leave. It’s so weird. All the members in our ward always bring it up asking how long I have now and all that sort of stuff. But anyways thats enough of that. 
This week was a long week for lots of reasons. So many things went on. We had MLC on Wednesday with President Walker. It was very different from President Balli. It was good though, it’s just hard to adjust. But it’s good because this mission needs what he has to offer. It was cool tho during our MLC, he wanted to come up with 5 things that the NZAM (New Zealand Auckland Mission) will be known for. It took us about an hour and a half but we finally came up with it. We put the 5 things into sentences. It’s not quite finished yet but it was cool to be apart of that aspect of things because that will probably last the whole time he is here. 

We had a cool experience this week. Elder Chi and I were looking through our area book trying to find people who we could contact because we are struggling to find people to teach. We came across a former inv. Richard. He went and visited and through out this last week we have had a few lessons with him. He committed to come to church which was good. We contacted one of our members who knows him pretty well and our member was telling us that he always will tell missionaries that he will come to church but never does and our member is always stood up by him every time he goes to pick him up. Our member told us this but he said he will go try anyways because we had asked him too. To make a long story short he came to church and when we got to church our member apologized to us for doubting and he said it was a powerful experience for him. So it was really cool. We are hoping to get Richard set with a date for baptism. So that was pretty exciting for us. 
On Friday we planned a movie night with all the missionaries in the zone and there investigators. We got members to bring snacks while we watch. We just watched it at the chapel on a big tv. We watched Ephraim’s rescue. It was really good. We had a solid turn out as well and was a good experience for our investigators.

That’s all I have from this week and to be honest I don’t know if I will even write much next week but we will see. Cant wait to see everyone next week! It’s so weird saying that!!!!! hahah Have a great week! I love you heaps!


Elder Shannon




Monday, July 3, 2017

New Mission President!

Kia Ora,

Well things haven't changed much. Other than the fact that we have a new mission President now!!! Its so weird. he came in Saturday afternoon. I am actually glad I only have him for 3 weeks because it would be hard for me to adjust to a new president. Not that I have anything against him it's just that I love President Balli and his wife so much. So I don't have to really worry about it. We will get to meet him tomorrow. we are having zone conference and that is when we get to meet them which will be cool.

But for Elder Chi and I in our area has been a struggle. The work here just hit a wall. And it's frustrating because I leave in 3 weeks and it is so tempting for me to not do anything the rest of the way. I know this is Heavenly Father trying to test me. I will not give up quite yet because I know there is still some things I need to learn before I finish. 

We had a lesson with Saia. We went to follow up about his Book of Mormon and he told us that he didnt read it and we were pretty disappointed. He is just so annoying I love him and hate him at the same time haha. He is our only solid investigator at the moment. We are trying to 'find' hard at the moment because we are saving a lot of investigators for later because they aren't progressing. So it's been pretty frustrating especially now because the weather is not super great and it has been raining the past few days which makes it hard. But we keep pressing forward. 

So that is all that has really happened here in NZ. I hope yous have a great week! Love you heaps!

Elder Shannon

Sunday, June 25, 2017

I Love my Mission so MUCH!

Hello,

This week was pretty emotional. Wednesday we had a specialized training which is pretty much just a 2 hour long zone conference. It was our final meeting with President and his wife. It was is just so weird to be getting a new mission president. But they just talked to us about what is going to happen and how we should support President Walker when he comes in. 
We did a haka for president and his wife after the meeting and it was so freaking cool. There was about 30 Elders that did it. Every time I watch it I get the chills. It was weird because when we finished I still had some adrenaline left over and my body did not like that I wasn't moving very much. I was shaking afterwards. I got into it when we did the haka. 
After the meeting we had trade off with the Ap's. I was with Elder Cowley in our area and we had a solid day. We had a lesson with Saia and we addressed his concern about prophets and than we taught him about the book of Mormon. He is committed to reading it which we are hoping that he sees the importance of the book and the Knowledge it gives us. He is so close to being set with a baptismal date. We are just anxiously waiting for our next lesson with him on Wednesday. 
Things have been pretty good tho. Elder Chi and I are getting along great and I am happy that he is killing me because he is cool. The area is solid as well. I swear everyday just gets faster and faster. 
I am to the point now where I don't want to come home. I love the mission to much haha but that is all I am wanting to write because I just can't be bothered so sorry bout it. But I love you heaps and hope you have a good week!


Elder Shannon   

Monday, June 19, 2017

Last Transfer

Malo e lelei

This week was pretty freaking hectic. The start of the week was really good. We had zone P-day and Presidents wife came to it which was cool. It was really fun. We did a scavenger hunt and played Laser tag. 
We also got transfer news as well that night. My companion Elder Whalley got transferred which was sad because I was hoping he would kill me. But nah. My new companion is Elder Chi from Malaysia. He is pretty cool. He has about 4 months left so we will probably be making each other trunky the whole time lol. Nah I’m just playing. We gonna smash it out my last transfer. It’s weird saying that. But ya it’s happening. 
Transfers was pretty hectic its self. Everyone meets at our chapel in our zone so we are in charge of making sure everyone goes where they need to be and all that stuff. It was pretty stressful. But it was good fun. 
We had a mean lesson with our investigator Saia. We taught the gospel of Jesus Christ and it was intense. We had like a 2 hour long lesson with them. It was solid. It was pretty frustrating because he is just so stubborn. We talked a lot about baptism and he expressed to us why he doesn't want to get baptized (yet) hehe. When we were closing up we were trying to think of what we could say to him that would help him to come unto Christ. So  the spirit totally hit us and took over. We asked him if he has a sincere desire to follow Christ. We talked a little bit more and Elder Chi and I just bore our testimonies on the Saviour. It was the first time I have ever cried in a lesson my whole mission. We explained to them how important it is to follow our Saviour and the importance of his gospel. It was a good way to end our lesson. 
Another cool experience was at a Come and See fireside our mission holds once a month for investigators to come and to listen to musical items and to hear recent converts speak. It was President and Sister Balli’s last one and we surprised them by singing the EFY medley. They sat at the pulpit and all the missionaries walked up to the front and faced them and sang it. It was so freaking cool. There was like 130 of us singing it. It was super loud and powerful. They got super emotional and it was the first time we have seen President Balli cry. We will be doing a haka for them this week before they leave next week which will be super cool. We will be practicing the rest of p day for it. 
Other than that nothing else happened. And to be honest I can't be bothered doing long emails anymore haha. But things are going super well right now. I hope you have a great week this week. 
I love you heaps! 


Elder Shannon 






Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Days go by Faster and Faster

Hello

The days just go by faster and faster. This past week has been really good. We had a really good lesson with Siah, one of our investigators. His wife is less active wanting to come back to church. So we have been teaching them together which has been really good. We taught the Plan of Salvation. It was a mean lesson. I think we answered every question that he had about the plan of salvation which was really good. We have slowly seen him open up more to the gospel as well. His wife will joke with him about getting baptized and he will turn on his "Anti-conversion shield" as he calls it. But now when she does it he has this look on his face that he is some what considering it. So our next lesson is going to be crazy because we are teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. We will probs invite him to be baptized. So it will be hectic. 
Our newest investigator Lilly we had a good meeting with her. We talked about why we serve missions and all this stuff and had a really good conversation with her about it. The next lesson we will have with her she is going to invite her younger brother over who just returned home from his mission and have a lesson with her. So it will be nuts the next time we meet with her because we will be teaching the restoration. 
We had zone conference this week which was really good. It was our last zone conference with President and sister Balli. They leave on the 1st of July. It will be interesting when the change happens because no one will know what to expect. The change happens mid transfer for us so it will be weird. It is now starting to get colder and colder by the day which sucks. But its nothing like the winter we get in Utah. Not even close, but it’s still cold. 
We had stake conference this week and we had a member of the Seventy come which was awesome. Elder Benjamin Sinjoux from Tahiti. He talked for about 3 hours this weekend. It was hectic haha. We also heard from a member of the Temple presidency Brother and Sister Lavea. Brother Lavea shared an experience about this woman that came up to him in the temple saying that she never wanted to leave. He responded by asking "why not? Don't you want to go home and see your kids?" She than responded " I just feel peace and comfort every time I come here." Brother Lavea than responded "If you were to remain here you wouldn't be able to apply the things you have learned here in the temple. Thats why you have to leave at some point to apply what you have learned and see your faith increase." 
It was really cool how he put it. I tried my best to get it word for word but was not very good so hopefully you get what he was trying to say. But it was really cool. Often times we don't want to leave the temple because of what we feel and learn which is definitely a good thing. But we must have the courage to come out and be ready to take on whats out in the world. The temple helps us to combat with the tings of the world. I believe every time anyone walks out of the temple or even if they are just outside, you leave with a better feeling than you did before and you probably learned something new. That is why we must leave the temple so we can apply it. 
But that is all I am going to write for this week because I am honestly getting tired of emailing so ya. I love you so much and hope you and the rest of the fam is doing well!


Elder Shannon 








Sunday, June 4, 2017

We Get Fed WAY Too Much

Talofa
This week has been pretty hectic. I am just going to start off by saying we get fed way to much. This past week was probably the most filling week we have had with eating. Monday me and my companion had a late lunch at about 3. We weren't expecting to get fed in the evening. We than went to our members house where every second week they hold an FHE for whoever wants to come. No one showed up and it ended up just being Elder Whalley and I. We just talked with them for a little bit and than they took us out to eat to Carls Jr. We ordered what we wanted which wasn't that much because we weren't hungry. Oh… it’s important to know this family is Tongan, lol. 
When we finished they went and bought more food. And we can't say no because they don't have a lot of money so we had to eat it or they would be wasting their money. We had to other experiences like this through out the week when members just decide to feed us on the spot. Like I have never hated food so much. There were times through out the week where I felt like throwing up just by thinking of food. I think I might have went a whole day without eating because I was so full and that is no joke. haha.
On the other side of things, the work has been going really good. We had some solid lessons this week. We had one with our investigator Vinny. He is 19 and he has been taught everything and wants to get baptized. The only thing stopping is he got in trouble with the law. But he talked with our mission president and just has to wait for his parole to finish which should hopefully be at the beginning of July. We read Alma ch. 5 with him and talked about repentance, which was awesome. I love reading that chapter because there is so much to learn from it. I like in v.15 Alma pretty much asks the question "Would you be able to stand before God right now and tell him you have done good in this life?" It’s a good question to ask ourselves. Would you be able to stand before God right now and tell him you are worthy to return to him? 
We also had another good lesson with one of our new investigators Siah. His wife is a member and is trying to become active again and is wanting her husband to learn about the Gospel. We taught him the Restoration. It was a solid lesson. We also had a member with us which was good because Siah is a very stubborn guy. Every time we go over to their house he always tells us he has his anti ‘conversion shield’ on in a joking way. But we reckon we will be able to break through that. We know he felt the spirit during the lesson but he won’t admit it. So it will be tough but we think he will break soon. 
We had an awesome lesson in our Gospel Principals class on Sunday. We talked about the Holy Ghost and the main theme of it was being humble and submissive to the promptings of the Holy Ghost which was really good for him. We found this Tongan family this past week that we will start teaching this week. They are a young family. 4 kids and the oldest is 7 I think... The wife is a member she is less active at the moment and her husband is a non member. We had a good discussion about prayer and they opened up to us about it and how they pray as a family. They also said the church they go to now doesn't teach about the importance of family and they were saying they wish it was more family oriented. Right than we were like "oh snap" They are so ready for the Gospel because thats what they need. So hopefully it is what they are looking for and they will be able to see the blessings and the joy from the gospel. 
We had MLC this week as well and it was super good. It was President and Sister Balli's last MLC which was sad. No one wants them to go. They bore there testimonies at the end and it was just super awesome to see there love and dedication towards the work of the Lord. 
We have seen so many miracles and blessings this past week and it has been awesome to see. That is something I will miss about the mission is seeing miracles and feeling the spirit so strong all the time. It just all goes by way to fast. 
That’s all for this week though. I love you heaps and hope you have a great week!


Elder Shannon     



Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Boys II Elders

Hello, 

This week has just been absolutely crazy. So many events happened this week. So everyday for the week and a half during our lunch break we have been practicing a dance for our ward conference weekend and also the Samoan ward because they were having a missionary weekend which I will talk a little more about later. But ya we have been doing that every day for an hour. There are 6 of us missionaries in the dance. 
Thursday we went on trade off with the Samoan Elders that live with us. I went with Elder Salesa in there area. They get to cover the whole stake which is pretty cool. I wasn't able to do much because I can't really speak Samoan except for a few words but it was still fun. It was still really good though. We had a pretty good day. 
Friday came around and things just got crazy. We were in the middle of personal study and randomly my companion gets out of his desk super quick to go look in the mirror. 10 seconds later we just hear him scream and the Samoan Elders and I all rushed to him to see what was wrong and he just says "I think I have lice." We all started cracking up. He is freaking out about it. We went and got him some stuff to help get rid of it and it really through off our whole day because we were supposed to have weekly planning that day but we couldn't because he was busy getting rid of his lice. We all think its just dandruff and he has a dry scalp because non of us have it and he says he thinks he has had it for over a month. Its funny because he is just super paranoid all the time about it a we sometimes make fun of it for him lol. 
Later that night was when we performed our dance. Let me tell you now, it was freaking LIT! We first did it in our ward during our Aloha night that they were having for our ward conference weekend. It was super fun. After we performed at that on we had to go to the other ward to do it for them straight after. It was super fun because all of the members were pumped. Everyone heard that we were doing a dance but they didn't know how good it was actually going to be. The ward mission leader in the Samoan ward said that they were going to make us t-shirts for the dance. So we came up with a design and a group name. I will get a picture of the shirts next week. But they are dope! Our group name was "Boys II Elders". So that was really fun to do. 
Alright I should probs share a spiritual experience from this week because I haven't yet. Late Friday night at 10:30 we get a call from one of our members telling us that her 3 year old son was just recently rushed to the hospital in intensive care. I forgot what it is that he has but he has some sort of disease when he was born and its been pretty bad ever since than. She asked if we could come give her son a blessing. So at 10:30 pm we drove to the hospital in the city to give a blessing. It was a super cool experience because it was super late we were both tired and we just wanted to sleep but we were blessed for it. We felt the spirit super strong. The next morning we got a message from her telling us that her son is doing much better which was awesome because it wasn't looking super good at the start but he is doing better. 
Elder Whalley and I just felt really good after that. We still haven't made up the sleep from that night but still worth it because we felt we were fulfilling our callings not only as missionaries but as priesthood holders. That next morning we participated in the missionary weekend for the Samoan ward. We went on splits with there members and did some tracting and trying to get the members more involved. It was super fun. We had a massive feed afterwards which is always a plus. Sunday was really good. Church was awesome. 
In Gospel Principals class we talked and read about baptism. We have this investigator, Bro Taylor whose wife and kids are all members but him. He has been getting taught for ages and comes to church every week and participates he just won't get baptized. But the lesson was really good because he had some concerns about it that we didn't really know about and we were able to answer his questions. We are almost there with him we just have to keep praying. So that is pretty much my week.
 I hope you have a great week. I love ya heaps!


Elder Shannon     

Monday, May 22, 2017

Last Interview with President

Hello

Another week is in the books. This week has been an alright week. I hate to say it but it was just kind of a weird week. We had interviews with president for the final time before he goes home. So that was pretty sad. We spent all day giving training's to each companionship in the zone. We starter at 11 am and went all the way to 6 pm. It was so tiring for us and we had to give the same training like 6 times. It was good though. My interview with President was really good. He always has an answer for everything and knows exactly what to say. I am super grateful for him because he has helped me so much. He has a little over a month before he goes home. 
In my interview we, I, asked him how can we help someone develop trust again? And he gave me an equation that I really loved. Time + Experience = Trust. I thought about it more after the interview had finished and its the same with developing that faith we have in Jesus Christ. It takes time for one to have certain experiences that help us to gain a testimony of our Saviour Jesus Christ. It doesn't come at one moment, it takes time. So I thought that was really cool. 
Man I am trying to think of everything that happened this week and nothing to exciting. It was a down week for us. Appointments getting cancelled and pushed back. Something fun we have been doing lately is doing zone blitz's every Saturday. We go to one of the companionship area as a zone and tract in there area hoping that we can help increase there finding and giving them new people to teach. It has been super fun because we have been getting the YSA to come out with us and we are able to trade off with them and go knock some doors which as been really fun. Its always fun taking the YSA out and have them experience missionary work. 
I don't have a whole lot of time today so this will be a quick one. Nothing super exciting happened this week so there wasn't much to tell anyways. But I love you heaps and hoe you have a good week!


Elder Shannon

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Unexpected Are Transfer

Kia Ora

Man I don't even know where to begin for this past week. It was so hectic this past week. It was our transfer week this last week. And I wasn't really expecting to get transferred. I thought I would stay and finish up in this area. But that is not what happened at all. I ended up getting transferred back down to Auckland. Which I was pretty excited about because didn't want to finish up north. I was pumped about that. 
I am a Zone Leader again which I wasn't to excited about because I don't want to really have to worry about anyone else. But its all good. I can live with it (hahaha). My new area is in the Panmure Stake in the Stonefields Ward. There are heaps of islanders here which is mean because that means the food is going to be good. My new companion in Elder Whalley. He is from Australia. He is super cool. He laughs at all the stupid things I say which is a plus for me. 
So yeah, I spent all day Tuesday packing and saying goodbye to everyone there. It was a very stressful day because of having to pack and than having to drive to both areas to say goodbye. On Wednesday I left for Auckland. A few other missionaries and I took the bus back down to Auckland. When we got to the bus station down in Auckland no one was there to pick us up. We had to sit outside in the cold for about 30 minutes while we waited for the other missionaries to come pick us up. That sucked because it was cold. 
Our ward is awesome and so is the area. We have quite a few investigators who we are working with at the moment. We haven't really had much time to proselyte this week because we were so busy. 
Friday we had MLC which was really good. It was probably one of the best ones I have been to. It was just super spiritual. President got pretty emotional towards the end. So he showed up to MLC a little bit late and towards the end he explained to us why. He told us that he was taking a missionary to the airport to go home early and then he said that he was going to be taking another one home after the meeting was over. He went on to say how hard it is to call the parents of that missionary and tell them that there son or daughter is coming home early. He started to tear up and than he asked us how we can stop this from happening. We had a really good discussion as MLC group about it. It was probably one of the more spiritual meetings I have had on the mission. I feel super bad for President when he has to deal with a missionary like that who doesn't really care because he is just wasting everyone's time. As an MLC we came up that as leaders we need to step up and stop the problem before it gets worse or try to deal with it ourselves. And if we can't then we talk to President about it. So that was that. 
Saturday and Sunday we have just been going around and trying to meet everyone in the ward. We did have some really good lessons. We have the Taylor family who is all members except the husband. So we taught him the Plan of Salvation on Saturday night and it was a solid lesson. The only problem is that he will tell us when he wants to get baptized. He hates it when we ask so it sucks because we have know idea if and when he wants to get baptized. He comes to church every week and loves having the lessons and knows heaps about the church. There is also this couple Jane and Paula who was just recently baptized a week ago. They are super cool. Paula just received the Aaronic Priesthood yesterday during church which was super cool. We went over to there house towards the end of the night to talk a little bit more about the Priesthood and we had a solid lesson with him and his wife about the Priesthood. He was super into it. It was super awesome! 
Man this past week was just hectic for me but it’s all good. It’s weird to think that this will be my last area and probably my last companion. Its getting weird. Thats all I have for this week. 
Love ya heaps!


Elder Shannon





Sunday, April 30, 2017

Obedience and Testimony

Kia Ora,

I don't have a lot of time this week so I will have to make this one quick. This past week was a roller coaster kind of a week. It started off really good. Our new investigator Frank who came to church Easter weekend, we had a lesson with him. All we did was just ask him some questions and see what he knew and what he is wanting to take away from meeting with us. We didn't really teach anything, but we got to know him super well. He wants to get baptized really bad which is super cool. He is one of those golden investigators missionaries would kill to have them. We haven't set a date yet for him but we will the next time we go see him. If we baptize him then his wife will start coming back to church because she is a less active as well so it is quite the deal with them. We are super excited about that cause this branch hasn't had a baptism in a about 2 years. He will probably get baptized at the end of May or beginning of June. So that was one high we were on at the start of the week. 
In our other branch things aren't going so well.  We had an investigator Cassandra move about a month ago. We know they didn't move to far from where they used to live. Just a few minutes away. But the problem is that we don't know where they moved to and they aren't answering their phone. She was super close to baptism to but she just went off the grid. Sunday came around and we were driving to church and we saw Cassandra's partner walking on the main street and when we saw him we immediately turned the car around to go back and talk to him to see where they have been. But by the time we turned around and started looking for him we could not find him. We were super bummed about it. It's been a month and a half since we last saw them. It has been super frustrating. So we just had to accept the fact that we will have to wait for another time and hope we see them again.  So we are praying that we will see them again, its just on the Lord’s time and not ours. 
For church that Sunday in the Wellsford Branch it was Branch Conference and it was really good. We had a good lesson in priesthood about testimonies. One thing that someone mentioned that I really loved was that "Obedience is so crucial to having a strong testimony, you can be disobedient and still experience things and have your testimony grow, but it won't reach its full potential. being obedient increases our testimony so much more than we know." I started to ponder those words the rest of the day and had a good discussion with my companion about it. There is a significant difference in our testimonies depending on our commitment to being obedient. So that was really cool. The branch conference was really good! I loved it so much. 
That is all I have time for this week. I love you heaps! Have a great week!


Elder Shannon    





Sunday, April 23, 2017

Feeding the Spirit

Hello

This last week was a pretty solid week. On Monday we had our zone p day and we did an amazing race sorta thing which was pretty fun. Then we had a water balloon fight and we also played football as well. Almost everyone from our zone is from here in the pacific and they have never played so it was pretty fun to teach and play it. 
We also had interviews and zone conference as well. That was on Thursday and Friday back to back which was pretty tiring.  Interviews were really good. It's funny because I am pretty sure President Balli is trunky. Normally he is always asking about our obedience, planning and our area. But this was very different. We started making fun of the new missionaries who watch General Conference for the first time and they say its there first time watching all the sessions. And then he started making jokes about one of our branch Presidents who is just pretty crazy. It was interesting because he normally isn't like that. It was a super relaxed interview and just funny. 
My favorite one was with Sister Balli. She shared a video with me and than we talked about it. The video was entitled "Daily Bread: Pattern" It talks about us having to always feed our physical needs but how we also need to feed our spirituality. And I remember a talk I heard and I forget where I heard it but the person giving the talk stated that every time we get hungry we should also think to feed our spiritual side at the same time. It was an interesting comparison because there are times when it’s hard to tell when our spirit is hungry. That’s why it’s so important to always constantly feed it because it can be hard to tell when our spirit is hungry. And then when we do notice that it is, it’s hard to get our selves to feed our spirit. It just really hit me and was super good because I was really needing that at that time. 
On Friday we then had zone conference which was really good. They split us up and we had little work shops which was different because we normally just do the same format every time. We sit down and they give us training's for 6 hours so it was finally nice to mix it up. Yesterday was pretty interesting. 
We attended the Wellsford Branch and there was about 11 people that chowed up to church which was pretty sad but school is out for a few weeks here and so people are out on holidays but it was still sad. I got to pick the hymns for sacrament which was pretty fun and Elder Canoy and I got to be the first and second counselor for the day because both of them were gone. So it ended up being pretty fun. 
But Ya holidays here sucks because we school is out people always go out of town and it makes it super hard when you want to teach or visit less actives when they are all gone. It makes the week go by slow.  
That’s all I have from this last week. 
Love you! 


Elder Shannon

Sunday, April 16, 2017

The Miracle In Bream Bay

Kia Ora,

This past week has been nuts. The weather here has been crazy over the past week. Last week I talked about how it rained so much, well that was nothing compared to what we got this last week. We had what they call a cyclone which is pretty much just a mini hurricane. It rained all week. I don't think the sun came out once. Lots of rain and the wind was pretty bad too. 
The cyclone came in on Thursday and just went along the whole east coast of New Zealand. We were without power from Thursday night to Saturday night. It was terrible. Sister Balli sent out a text to all the missionaries to stay inside all day Friday. It was just hectic. There was water everywhere. Fields were flooded and so were some of the roads. Luckily where I am though that’s about all that happened. Auckland got it worse. They had flooding and mud slides and all that stuff. It was crazy! 
Sunday came around and it was such a beautiful day I couldn't have asked for a better day on Easter. It was sunny with a few clouds in the sky and the temp was around 60-70 degrees. It was awesome. So that was that. 
On Saturday we were on trade off with our zone leaders. I was with Elder Telleman in there area. it was my first time going into there area. There area consists of one long road and that is pretty much it. All we did was drive up and down that road. It was super annoying. But it was good. Elder Telleman and I go home at the same time so we just talked about home and made ourselves pretty trunky haha. It was fun. He is from Australia. 
Yesterday though was awesome. Yesterday was just a miracle itself. Like I was saying that the weather on Sunday was just awesome. Well it was much needed. Our chapel in Bream Bay is a house. For sacrament we meet in the garage. We had about 80 people attend our branch for Easter. It was packed. There wasn't enough room in the garage so we had to open up the garage and people had to sit outside. The Lord had blessed us with a great day for this occasion. At least that’s what I think. Now this is where you start to see the Lord work in mysterious ways. We weren't expecting this many people to show up to church. 
Every week that we attend the Bream Bay Branch we bless and pass the sacrament and I didn't even think to look at how much bread and water we had just until about 5 minutes before the sacrament song. We normally only have 2 bread trays and 2 water trays. So I looked under to see how much bread and water we had. We had 1 slice of bread on each tray and the water was filled up as normal. I looked up at the member next to me and across from me and we all just looked at each other with the same look like "oh my gosh, what are we going to do?" We didn't have any more bread to use. So we just went with it. We made it through with the bread but the water was my concern. No cups to refill either. I thought we would only get to half of the people with the water. But as they are passing they both finish up passing and come back with one cup left on each tray. One for both of them to whom were passing. We all just looked at each other and laughed about it because there was no way we were able to have done that. It was crazy. It may not seem like that big of a miracle to you but it was to us because of the situation we were in. It was crazy. 
We also got a new investigator after church as well. His name is Frank, he just married a member a few weeks ago and they just recently moved in. He told us that he wants to be taught and baptized so that was cool. We just hope he is not build ups about it. So that is our week. It was indeed a crazy one. 
I love you heaps! Have a great week!


Elder Shannon




Kai Iwe Lakes


 Waterfall


Maori structure 



Monday, April 10, 2017

4th and Final!

Kia Ora,
Just this last weekend we were able to watch the good ole' GC. And like usual, it is always great. It was crazy as I was watching it, I had the realization of how much I have actually changed over the past 2 years. The fact that I am willing to sit down and watch every session of conference. Before it was skip the Saturday session and do everything I can to make it through the Sunday sessions. But now I hate when my companion has to go to the bathroom in the middle of a talk and I have to miss out on it. Like that happened a few times during the sessions and it was starting to irritate me haha. I had a little laugh with myself after I had this happen. I just never would have thought I would enjoy conference so much. 
I don't have my note book on me at the moment so I won't be able to share as much as I would like to from GC. I forget the Elder’s name, but he talked about learning the language of the gospel and how we can make our homes a place to learn and apply the gospel principals. I did like all of the talks on the Holy Ghost and listening to the promptings. Elder Rasband gave a great talk about it. I liked that he focused on us needing to act when we get a prompting and not trying to second guess whether its the holy ghost or not. "You will get it right 9 times out of 10" I really liked that because we just need to have confidence in ourselves to listen and to act on the first prompting we get from the holy ghost. There were several more I liked but again I forgot my notebook. But overall it was really good. 
It was super weird to think that it was my last GC on the mission. The 4th one. It’s just weird to think about. The next one we will be sitting together as a family watching it. On Thursday this last week we went fishing with our investigators which was super fun. We were able to catch some fish and then take it back to their house and they cooked for us and we then had dinner with them. It was so cool and super fun. I wasn't able to catch anything which was super lame but I guess thats how fishing goes. The dinner was good so that was all that mattered. Our investigators that we went with are Erma and Lawrence. They are super cool. After we had dinner we had a really good lesson about the Book of Mormon.  Erma had a lot of questions which was awesome. That day was just super cool. So that was like the highlight of our week. 
The weather this past week was hectic. It rained so much. I have talked about the rain in previous letters before but this last week was crazy. The begging of the week was just non stop rain. Auckland got hit the worst but there were several areas that flooded and quiet a few land slides. Roads were flooded with water to the point where no one could drive on some of the roads. For us the main highway that goes up and down NZ was blocked in one area it was so bad. It was super crazy. Luckily we didn't get it as bad  as Auckland got it. It was a little scary because they started sounding the tsunami sirens as a drill just to make sure everything was working properly. Just the thought of that scared me because our area is along the ocean and we live 3 minutes away from the beach. So that was intense. 
Here is a funny story for ya, while we were driving "I Believe I Can Fly" came on and my companion said "I love this song" than he started trying to think of who sang it and I told him it was R Kelly. He then said "no he doesn't sing it" I was like bruh... For real. Then we got in a little argument about who sang the song and than I asked him if he had seen Space Jam, and he said no. And than that’s when I knew why he didn't know and understand. I don't understand how you listen to that song without first seeing Space Jam. I told him that is a must see and is a movie I will cherish as one of my all time favorite childhood movies. We had a good laugh about it afterwards so it was good. 
That’s All I have for this week though. 
I love ya heaps mom! 


Elder Shannon

Thursday, April 6, 2017

He is a Perfect Example

April 2 2017

Kia Ora! 

This last week was awesome. Some many things happened this week. To Start things off we found 3 new investigators this last week which we were ecstatic about. All of them are Filipino. My companion worked his Filipino magic on them and they were happy to have us over to there home. The first 2 names are Chi and Cha. They are not related, they just have similar names which is ironic. But all the Filipinos in our area all know each other. 
On Tuesday night we had a massive dinner with them and there was like 15 other Filipinos there. It was so awesome. So there is some other potential there as well we hope we can work with. But they were all willing to listen and they had some questions and were willing to share experiences with us. And after this experience I can see why the Philippines baptizes so much. They recognize that we are servants of God and love and respect us unlike most people. So it was super awesome. 
The other that we found is Erma. She married a man from New Zealand. He is white and when we first met him I was expecting him to brush us off and not want to have anything to do with us because thats how most of the white people are here. But not him, he was super nice. He is not super interested in religion but loves talking to us. Things just seemed to go our way this week. We are really wanting to get things going and especially me. I want to get a baptism in this area super bad because the branch deserves a baptism and they are so close to getting it. We just have to keep trying and trusting in the lord. 
I am super excited for conference. I will watch conference a last time on the mission this weekend for me which is weird to think about. The days are getting faster and so are the weeks. Everything is starting to become a blur. Its so strange. But I am still loving every moment of it. My studies have been super good lately. I have been studying Alma the younger super closely. I decided I wanted to study specific people and there accounts and stories they have. It has been so awesome because I can just focus on that one person and on there attributes and all the things they have done good at. I love Alma the younger so much because he is so sick! I like when he is telling his son Helaman his conversion he had when him and his brothers were trying to destroy the church. It’s in ch. 36 of Alma. I could only imagine what it was like for Helaman to here that from his dad. It is such a powerful experience. We are talking about Alma being not being able to move, talk, eat or drink for 3 days and 3 nights. No movement at all. And he offers up a prayer to Heavenly Father asking for forgiveness. Alma remembered what his dad had told him concerning the coming of the Saviour and the Atonement that he would perform. This gave him peace and comfort and it was able to change his heart and his behavior about everything he had done. It is such a great example of how our Saviour can give us that peace and comfort knowing that he has performed the Atonement for us. For me, for you, for everyone. Christ didn't do it to say that he was better than everyone else. He very well could have done that and been selfish enough to not even perform the Atonement for us. But he did it because he loves us. He is the perfect example. I am just lucky enough to have this knowledge in my life. It gives me the strength to keep going everyday knowing that the knowledge I have can change someones life forever! I love this Gospel. 
That’s all for this week. Have a great week!


Elder Shannon       

Monday, March 27, 2017

Things like that don't just happen...

Kia Ora,

This past week was a really good week. It was one of those weeks where you just feel super good about the work that you have done. It is awesome feeling even if you weren't super successful, you still enjoyed it and know that you did your best. We had a really cool experience earlier on in the week. When Elder Canoy and I got in the car and we were low on gas. So we went to fill up and when we get to the gas station none of the pumps were working. They were all out of service. We had no idea what to do and remember, we stay in a very small town so this is the only gas station in our town. The next one is 30 minutes away. So there is no way we could make it to another one that far away. We started to think about what we could do because the gas light was on so we could hardly do anything. So we went back to the flat and said a prayer. We prayed that Heavenly Father would give us direction and guidance on what we should do.We got the impression to knock some doors around our flat. We both were kinda like what the heck? These doors have been knocked on by missionaries several times over that past few years. But we did it anyway because thats what we felt like we needed to do. We started at our neighbors house just next door to us and we know them pretty well but they have never really been that interested. We knocked on there door and some one else came to the door. It ended up being on of there kids who was in town visiting and he was baptized a few years ago and has been less active since than. We started talking to him and he let us in. We asked him about his baptism and all of that stuff and asked why he had stopped going to church.  He told us and we were able to help him and just talk to him about it. I won't share what it was that was keeping him from going. So if we had been able to fill our car up on gas we would have gone to a completely different part of our area and never thought to have gone there. He was only there for a few days but we were able to catch him and talk to him. It was such a cool experience. It’s so cool how the Lord works, to the extent that he made sure that the gas pumps were broken haha. It’s kinda funny as well. Things like that don't just happen, they happen for a reason. It’s even funnier by the time we finished we went back to the gas station and the pumps worked. Crazy aye? 
Also this week we attended a funeral. That was good. I love the culture and tradition that the Maori's have for there funerals. It’s like a 3 day thing and heaps of food. It’s honestly one of the cooler things you could be apart of. It’s just so unique and different and very special and sacred. That’s all I have for this week though. I hope all is well. Love ya heaps! 

Elder Shannon


p.s. Also I got a tattoo this week as well. I really like it haha jokes its not real but lowkey I want to get a tattoo on my forearm   







Sunday, March 19, 2017

Kia Ora,

This week was pretty normal. We had Zone Conference and that was good. I also met Elder and Sister Bartlett. They said hi to me and knew my name and where I was from and it really freaked me out cause I had no idea who they were until they told me. It was funny. 
Nothing to new this week. We have quite a few potential investigators whom are members have referred to us which we think have some potential. Last night was really awesome. we went over to our Branch Presidents house for dinner and they always put on a nice dinner but they also had 3 non members there for us which was really cool. I think they were all 19. So we had dinner with them and had a good time and then we had a good lesson afterwards with them. One of them was super interested though and he came to church yesterday as well. He also came to stake conference last week as well so he seems really interested and insisted that he come to church as well. So he is really cool and showing some interest. 
Man… I just realized how boring this letter is haha. Our area is kinda boring at the moment. Not a lot is happening. We have transfers this upcoming week. I don't think anything will happen with Elder Canoy and I. It is weird cause when you think time can't speed up anymore it just keeps getting faster and faster. I basically have 4 and a half months left. After Elder Canoy I will probably only have one other companion and be in one other area. (im not trunky or anything) Tha’ts all I have for this week. 

Love ya! 


Elder Shannon