Well this week was awesome. I got a lot of questions about our little annex. We have six official members right now: one is inactive and has not been to church in a long long time and one is a ten year old girl, so really we only have four adult members; three of which, are recent converts of about two months. We have one priest who is an Aaronic priesthood holder and is a recent convert, and one Melchezadik priesthood holder who is a return missionary. We the elders, are the branch leaders. We teach, conduct, preside, talk, and do literally everything in the annex; we're really hoping to start getting some callings and delegating responsibility to members. We have a large thriving primary of about 12 kids. A lot of them are baptismal age, but we really want to get their parents baptized before them so they don't just become less-actives.
Work this week was good. We did the Sevusevu in Natumua, which was cool. The chiefs were awesome and we had a lot of fun meeting them and talking with them. During the sevusevu, they did cool chanting and clapping and singing and things to accept our offering to the village. It was really cool to see. (An explanation of this ceremony was given in Jake's previous e-mail)
We have one family of four kids ages 15,11,10,8 who have been coming to church every week for a long time. We really believe their parents are getting close to accepting so we could baptize the whole family; that would be awesome. But they live very very far in the jungle, so it is hard to go see them more then once a week. We have some other investigators who show great potential, but really I think we just need someone to step up and take the first step to be the first member from that side of the island. After that, I am pretty sure lots will follow. We are praying hard to find the brave first soul.
We went crazy with contacting this week and met tons of good new people. Hopefully we can get some new members and enlarge our congregation. One thing we're very excited for is next week's combined FHE. Everyone is excited and it will be the first activity here.
We're also starting a weekly choir practice. Our hymn-singing on Sunday is pretty pathetic and as you all know, I don't help that out at all. My companion is a great singer and is musically talented, so he will be teaching them how to sing while I try to not make everything sound bad. Things are improving slowly but surely. It's good to see the excitement and commitment of our young members. They are truly converted and changed people.
Funny story from this week that I thought you might like: so I was preparing for bed and I went to use the bathroom. When I opened the door, there was a giant rat sitting on the floor, staring at me. We stared at each other for a minute, then the rat realized he was angry that I was in his house and I realized I was angry that he was in my house. So he decided to attack me. He ran at me and jumped on my leg and tried to climb up me. I then screamed and swatted it off and tried to stomp on it. It then tried again and again to climb up my leg. After about four or five times, it realized that I was eventually going to stomp on him and squish him between my toes, so he got scared and ran away...but by this time I had managed to grab the broom which I then swung, missed, and broke our broom. So it was an interesting experience. Ha ha! I know Grandma Thompson is gonna love that story.
That about covers my week. I hope all is well back in America. I am loving life here.
Have a great week.