Sunday, April 2, 2017

Week 35: 03/27/17..."APRIL 3RD: SAVE THE DATE"


this week was a warm one for sure!!! 

Anyways, miracles are everywhere! Sister Fun and I have started working with the members in our missionary work and so we are excited to do that this week :) there's one sister, Sister Anderson, who's husband hadn't met with missionaries for over 6 YEARS! so imma change that and get him to the water real soon! (lol jk, ok not really)

Shameika came to church and brought all her kids except Kiko, her 8 year old son! he's so funny, he's always riding his bike around the neighborhood in just his underwear! He probrably didn't want to come because he knew he would have to wear clothes to church, lol! I was SO thankful for the members here in Sav because they welcomed Shameika and all her kids with open arms!! Sis Fun and I were worried that the kids would feel uncomfortable or Shameika would feel that way but everything went so smoothly! all of the kids that came want to get baptized so.... we shall see!

Another miracle that happened was a young man named Marvin came to church! Here's the story about him: He was taught by missionaries for a while and was close to being baptized many times! Each time he was gonna get baptized, he went A Wall! Anyways, while Sis Fun and I were on our way home one day, this woman stopped us and told her the missionaries used to come by and teach her son... Lo and behold, that woman was Marvin's mom! We told her how we've been trying to find him but we didn't know how! She told us that her and him will come to church on Sunday and they did! Joan, Marvin's mom, came for the first time and loved it! the relief society were very welcoming to her and I know she felt loved! I'm hoping that this will be our opportunity to teach the both of them!

Paulette, Shyann, and Cody are still amazing and I'm hoping they can come to church soon! They were meant to come yesterday but weren't able to because there was a man who had to fix the roof of their shop and home slice didn't wanna do it on Saturday! It's okay, I have faith that they will come this upcoming Sunday and watch our very own leaders of today speak to us! 

This past Friday, the sisters of the Sav branch put together a little celebration in honor of the 175th anniversary of the relief society and that was so much fun! I love this branch and all the members!

I can't tell you all how excited I am for General Conference..... but we ALL know that the most IMPORTANT day is that following Monday. Just saying.

Anyways, I hope you all have a great week and enjoy every minute of every moment you're given to do something awesome!

Love you all!

Sister Meli


Week 34: 03/20/17..."ello"


This week was a crazy one! not really, but I thought I'd say it anyways... living in Jamaica is crazy itself!

To start, transfer calls came and Sis Fun and I are staying together (big surprise lol)! I'm excited to serve with her more so that we can work together to find miracles! 

Shameika, our investigator on date to be baptized this week, will now be baptized on April 8th... she couldn't come to church yesterday because she had no money to come :-( darn. We shared with her Mark 4 about the parable of the sower and explained to her that unless we deepen our roots in the gospel, the adversary is going to try and take us further away from our Father in Heaven. She is such a sweet lady but she gets tried so much! We are praying that she may keep her  eyes focused on the glory of our Father so that He can show her the way! 

We were able to see Paulette again this week and it was awesome!!! Shyann and Cody remembered almost EVERYTHING we taught about the Restoration! I was thinking to myself "These kids are so BRIGHT!" I have a testimony of the love that our Savior has for little children! They work hand in hand with our Heavenly Father and they don't even realize it! When we introduced them to the Book of Mormon, they were so excited to read more scripture and learn about Jesus Christ! Paulette was happy as well, she told us she wants to keep meeting with us.

The more I rely on the Lord in all I do, the more I've recognized how hard the adversary is trying to bring me down! I've recognized all the ups and downs that have come from trying to do what He wants me to do and I know that as I continue to seek His guidance, then He will show me the way. 

I hope you all have a blessed week!!!

Aloha wau ia oukou a ofa lahi atu!

Sister Meli

Week 33: 03/13/17...I got sun burnt this week smh

Hello fam! This week was really hot in Sav but it was amazing nonetheless! 

For starters, Shameika, our investigator who's on date to be baptized on March 25th, came to church! She came a little late but we were happy she was there!! I am so excited to continue to prepare her to be baptized :-) agh, she's so awesome!

I was also able to have a trade off with my amazing sistah training leader, Sister Bowen! She served here in Sav not too long ago so she was able to show me a lot of the people she had known and met with when she was here! She is soo sweet and I was thankful to learn so much from her! I have a VERY bad craving for chocolate and I got that from her lol!!!

This past week, a lot of our original appointments Sis Fun and I had set would fall through but we were able to find a lot of nice people (Thank you Heavenly Father!). One lady I want to talk about is Paulette. While walking around our neighborhood, we met Paulette and her friend Marva and so we came back yesterday to see her and our first lesson with her went amazing! She has a little daughter named Shyann and a grandson named Cody and all three of them were very receptive in the lesson. She's very humble and really loves Jesus Christ and so I am excited to meet with her again tomorrow :D

We were able to witness a baptism for the elders this past Saturday and it was so great. The baptism was for a mother and daughter! They baptize by the sea here and so that was a great motivation for me to help the people we are teaching to progress towards baptism! The sea is so beautiful here. Being from Hawaii, you KNOW that I love the ocean more than anything (with genki sushi as an exception) and so it was awesome to see the sea!

This week is full of hope and promise... just like every week! I am on the search for a miracle each day and with the Lord's help, I hope to be able to find one. I'd like to invite you all to do the same as well!!!

Love you all, I hope this week is awesome!!!

Aloha wau ia oukou a ofa lahi atu,

Sister Meli

Week 32: 03/06/17...I sneezed on the beat and got sick (literally

Hello everyone!!!

This week was a little slow because my body was being dealt with physical limitations! I got sick but it was still awesome! Since I stayed inside for a couple days, I was able to prepare a lot more for this upcoming week.

I also finished the Book of Mormon!!! That was my second time reading it and it was even better this time :) I love the Book of Mormon so much!

We had an awesome lesson with one of our new investigators, Heather. We invited her to be baptized and she said yes!! The spirit was so strong and I am so excited to prepare her for baptism!!! She really wanted a change in her life and she felt it right away in our lesson :)

We also had interviews with our mission president on Friday (which was also my 7 month mark!!!!) and it went great! He is working with us in making goals for each transfer so that we can see success. This upcoming Sunday, the missionaries will be putting together a missionary fireside for our branch and I am excited for that! We are going to help our members teach the Plan of Salvation using the scriptures!

I hope you all have a great week!

Aloha wau ia 'oukou a ofa lahi atu!
Sister Meli

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Week 31: 02/27/17: I'm getting darker...

Hello everyone!!!
This week was awesome! We had zone conference where are zls, aps, and our mission president all talked about how we should teach more conversationally. It was a much needed conference, especially for a sister like me, who can be really awkward at times!!!! The north coast zone is cool and I finally got to go to Montego Bay, where my dear trainer (who hit her year mark on Friday!!!) is from!!! I also got to see Elder Burrell, who is getting ready to leave to the Dominican Republic this week! he was visa waiting and being trained by Elder Perkins, who came out with me!!!
Sis Van Der Leek and I are slowly getting the hang of Sav and we put two of our investigators on date!!! Shameika and Kia picked their own date and will be preparing themselves to be baptized on the 25th of March!! I'm excited!!! We are also going to be putting 3 more of our investigators on date this week and so I am excited to see that happen! We set a goal to have 5 baptisms this transfer and so I know that by faith and obedience, the Lord will help us to make it happen!
I will soon be hitting my 7 month mark, so you know what that means.... I go home in less than a year!!!! I've gotta work hard to make every moment count!!!
Well, that is all I really have for this email lol. Thank you for the support, love you all!!!!
Aloha wau ia oukou a ofa lahi atu!!!
Sister Meli

Monday, February 20, 2017

Week 30: 02/20/17...New Area, New Companion

Week 30: Savannah La Mar

My apologies for not writing last week, the internet was way slow!!!! I think I only responded to my dad's email, hahaha. 

Anyways, I am in a new area and I am currently serving with Sister Van Der Leek... and as I said before, she's from South Africa! She's a great teacher and so I have been learning a lot from her!!!

These past couple weeks have been awesome! We've been doing a lot of finding and through faith in the Lord, we have been able to find a lot of great people to teach! We are currently working on putting Shameika and Kia (a mother and daughter) on date to be baptized. We should be seeing them today and so I will let you know how that goes :) They were found by the previous sisters who served here. Shameika is married and has 4 kids, making Kia her oldest! They are so humble and so ready to accept the gospel and so I am excited to help them progress towards baptism.

We are also teaching a lady named Pricilla. Okay, so funny story, on our first day here, we walked past Pricilla's home and her dogs tried to attack us! No joke, I thought I was going to die lol. We started to talk to Pricilla and after thanking her for saving our lives, we got a returning appointment! It turns out that she was taught by missionaries a long time ago! She is currently in labor but when she gives birth to her baby boy, we will prepare her for baptism as well because she told us she wants to get baptized! she is so nice and I am excited for the next time I get to see her.

The last person I will talk about right now is an awesome lady named Allison. We met her while finding in Grotto, which I found out is not a super safe area... lol. While teaching her the Restoration, she cried and I know she had felt the spirit. She has a lot of regrets in her life but we shared with her that it is through the gospel of Jesus Christ that she can feel free and happy. She's got 7 kids and they are all so awesome!

I've been able to reflect a lot on eternal families and why that is so important to our Father in Heaven. One thing I am learning while being a missionary is that because Heavenly Father loves us so much as His children, He wants us to share that love with our brothers and sisters. My testimony of that continues to strengthen as I am given opportunities to share with my Jamaica brothers and sisters that same message. I am sure that my mom and brother wanted me to understand that as well. I did my best to honor them this week by doing all I can to teach others about the gospel.

I know this one was a long one but I hope you all have a great week! To my friends at home, eat some Genki Sushi for me lol. Thank you for all the love and support!!!!!

Aloha wau ia oukou a ofa lahi atu!

Sister Meli

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Week 28: 02/06/17...Yay, another short message!

Week 28: 02/06/17: Yay, another short message from the Sister!

Also, happy Bob Marley day!!!

Week 28: 02/06/17: Transfers...:(

Week 28: 02/06/17

SOOOOO transfer calls came the other day and sadly, the adventures of Sister Baker and Meli are coming to an end :-( 

I knew it was coming since I've been in Maypen for 6 months but I was hoping to stay another transfer, hahaha. I will be going to Savannah La Mar (the most western part of Jamaica) and will be white washing the area with my good friend, Sister Von Der Leek. She's from South Africa! Even though I am sad to be leaving the MOST promising and blessed area in all of Jamaica, I am thankful for this opportunity I am given to start fresh with Sister Von. She's a great missionary and so I have full faith that her and I will work well together!

Earlier this week, I was able to go on trade offs with my SISTAH, Sis Afemata! She is awesome and I got to spend the day with her in Portmore. One thing I learned from her was how to replace my irritation or frustration with sorrow; sorrow for when the people we meet reject the most precious gift that our Heavenly Father can give them: the Atonement!!! By replacing my frustration or anger with sorrow, I was able to truly see others as children of our Heavenly Father. It has opened my eyes IMMENSELY. I hope to be able to apply this throughout the rest of my mission.

I am soooooo sad that Sister Baker and I won't be serving together but I am so thankful for the time I was given to be her companion. She has taught me so much about hard work, diligence, humility! Her and I always reminded each other to SMILE :-) I know that her and Sister Pierre (her new companion) will do well together! I am excited to hear about our investigators on date, Mr. Barnes, Ms. Joy, Tj, and Shavanese get baptized! I said goodbye to so many people yesterday and just cried out of gratitude towards the people of Maypen. No one told me that leaving an area, especially your first, would be so hard!!! But I am excited to see miracles happen in Savannah La Mar.

As this week rolls up, I hope everyone finds a miracle or tender mercy!! Those are EVERYWHERE! Thank you to everyone for the support and love!!! Wish me luck in Sav!

Aloha wau ia oukou a ofa lahi atu,

Sister Meli

Week 27: 01/30/17

Week 27: 01/30/17

This week was a CRAZY WEEK........ so, as many of you may know, there has been a lot of changes in the missionary world! We have a change in schedule and in the key indicators we report every week. The leaders of the church want us to focus on teaching repentance and baptizing converts and so we will only be reporting on the things related to that.

Our daily schedule for sister missionaries here in Jamaica has changed too and I'm still trying to get more accommodated to it. We will be proselyting starting at 8am now and we have to be back inside by 6pm (due to how dangerous it is here....... I mean, I never got shot yet so idk). All things are from the Lord and so I am focusing on getting more used to the schedule, hopefully that happens soon, hahaha!

Anyways, Sister Baker and I are excited and also scared for this week (transfer calls are soon, that happened so fast!) but it will be great nonetheless. We are still trying to make our goal for seeing 4 baptisms together and so I have a good feeling about it!! We are working on putting Mr. Barnes and Ms. Beth on date to be baptized and we will see how that goes. We see them later today :D

Well, I hope everyone has a great week! I know it's weird that I'm emailing so early but I hope this one finds ya fine :-)

Aloha wau ia oukou a ofa lahi atu,

Sister Meli

Pic 1: @ Traci Aiwohi
Pic 2: The camel cows that patrol our streets everyday
Pic 3: THE BEST JAMAICA/MEXICAN BURRITO I HAVE EVER EATEN IN MY LIFE (shout out to Elder Palmer for telling Sis Baker and me about Chilitos)

Week 26: 01/23/17: Miracles in Maypen!

Week 26: 01/23/17: Miracles in Maypen!

This week was so awesome!!!! Sister Baker and I have been working on finding the "elect" in our area and so we have been walking and talking to everyone!! We currently have three investigators on date to be baptized, Ms. Joy, who runs a small shop near our house, Shavanese, a woman who works at a bike store, and TJ, the son of a recent convert. All of these people are very promising and Sister Baker and I are excited to get these people prepared for baptism!! 

We have two other investigators named Beth and Mr. Barnes and I wanted to talk about them a little. We met Beth while trying to find her son who we contacted the day before and we ended up getting an appointment with her. She is SO awesome. She told us about how confused she was about all the different churches and is very willing to listen to our message. I think she's elect :) Mr. Barns is a referal we received from the elders in the office and when we met him, he had already been reading the Book of Mormon and testified to us about how he knew it was true. It was awesome teaching him because he's very humble. He also had his mom and grandma sit in on our first lesson with him and the spirit was there!!! Sis Baker and I are working on getting them both on date to be baptized and so we will see how that goes this week :)

I have to give credit to my companion, Sister Baker, for the week that we've had together. Her and I get along SO well! I feel like I'm serving with a best friend, every day is so much fun!!! I love her a lot and I learn a lot from her as well. We are working really hard in meeting our goals and we know that as we both work together to help Maypen grow, we will be able to see miracles!!!

Saturday, Jamaica was blessed to have a General Authority visit us and help us and the members work to see the church grow!!! Elder Gamiette was able to teach us a lot about how the members and missionaries can work together to bring souls unto Christ. It was POWERFUL and I learned so much about the importance of talking to everyone and how we can ask inspired questions in each lesson. I hope to be able to apply those things as I continue to serve as a missionary.

This week, the missionaries will have a broadcast training on Wednesday and I'm very excited to watch and learn from that as well. As I continue my search for a miracle each day, my hope is that I will always find one!!!! 

Have a blessed week and I hope you all know how much I love you all!!!

Aloha wau ia oukou a ofa lahi atu,

Sister Meli

pic 4: Sis Baker and I went to the Bob Marley Museum today and it was AWESOME! 
pics 1, 2,3: pics from the training on saturday lol

Week 25: 01/16/17

Week 25: 01/16/17

hey hey so I promised pics for like the last 3 weeks so here ya go. I'll make this one short so you all can enjoy seeing pics of my life from the last month lol