Elder Swan is serving in the Tonga Nuku'alofa Mission from July 2013 to July 2015

Saturday, November 23, 2013

The world ain't all sunshine and rainbows 11/17/2013

My Companion, Siale, his brother and of course ME!

Siale's baptism 11/16/2013
     This week has been rough! We were only able to teach on Monday and the rest of the week we just visited people. I would say more on the subject but I won't. So these past few weeks I have been praying and fasting that Siale's dad would let him be baptized and so on Tuesday we went and talked to them and they said it was all good and Siale said "I want to baptized on Friday!" Man I was so pumped. We had to move the baptism to Saturday because we had a mission tour. Siale's brother baptized him, he is a convert about a year ago and is working on his mission papers now. He is really a nice guy. So other then the mission tour and the baptism not much happened this week.
     Thank you to those who have given me some good advice. I have decided to give my entire self to the Lord. To follow his ways and to be a leader and follow the spirit! I love this Gospel but I still struggle. Sorry this week was short but not a lot happened.
      Wait just kidding, we did have our mission tour and I was able to see all my friends! Man Elder Sheppard is Hilarious! I love him! So what I got from the meeting was that I need to change. I shouldn't look at other people and think of things that they need to do. I need to do it!  Become a better missionary myself!

Got my second package. I love the Chocolate!! Also mom, don't be mad at me but in a letter I asked the President to send me to Niua! No Internet, no food, just trials. I want to be put there that I will not only learn but will need to rely on the Lord! Who's knows if it will happen but if it does I need it and want it.
Send me the Rocky quote, "Life ain't all sunshine and rainbows"
 Here is the quote I sent him---

     "Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place and it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t how hard you hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit, and keep moving forward. How much you can take, and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done. Now, if you know what you’re worth, then go out and get what you’re worth. But you gotta be willing to take the hit, and not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you are because of him, or her, or anybody. Cowards do that and that ain’t you. You’re better than that!”

'Ofa atu kiate kimoutolu!
Elder Swan
Elder Swan and Siale

Friday, November 22, 2013

Pictures from Mission Tour and My District 11/17/2013

 Here are some pictures from the Mission tour with some of my best friends!
 I saw Elder Freer, Elder Diehl, Elder Grant, Elder Bunting, Elder Patey and Elder Fiefia  :)
Me and Elder Sheppard

My friends and great Elders

Sister Seilala and Sister Anitoni

Mom can I bring this home?

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Mate Ma'a Tonga 11/10/2013

Malo e lelei,

     This week was good. Silikas boyfriend who gave us Silikas referral leaves for New Zealand today so she wants to wait until he gets back to be baptized so she won't be alone at church. So he told me that when he gets back she really wants me to baptize her if I am still here. If not she wants me to come, and if I can't she will send pictures! I haven't seen Sophie this week, but we are getting a lot more people to teach. We have two baptismal commitments. Ones name is Siale and the other one is Viliame. Siale is 9 and Viliame is 15ish i think. Both of their dads are not members and we need the okay from them in order to baptize. So that's our problem! We are also teaching a 17 or 18 year old girl her name is Maiata. She is such a sweetheart, and she knows English!!! So I try in Tongan and if not I say it in English. She seems interested and we are teaching her and Siale again tonight!

     So I went on a Vilo Hoa with of the Zone Leaders for the 4th time. I got to go to his area and that was fun. He doesn't speak any English so it was a long day. When I got back my Companion and the other Zone Leader had two new investigators from knocking on doors! I tried to explain to my companion that knocking on doors works, but in Tonga missionaries don't like doing that! Every time we have done it we have gotten a new investigator. Tonight I am going on a Vilo Hoa with the ward missionaries and we are teaching Siale the 9 year old boy.
Oh this coming Friday is a mission tour and I get to see all my friends. EVERY SINGLE missionary on this island comes to one church and listens to a member of the 70's teach and talk. It should be fun! I am super stoked! And getting bit by dogs!? How! Haha just throw a rock. Man I almost get bit every day but my bag of rocks scare em. There are more dogs here than people I feel like. And they are all mean because they are abused! Sad :(  

     I got my first box with candy and my music! WOW!!! That's a nice I pod, what the heck! I was expecting an older one Haha. But I like it. Some of the country makes me homesick and sad. So I don't listen to it, but all the church music I LOVE!!! I still have a stuffy nose, ever since the MTC. I don't know what it is. I do get headaches from thinking all the time!

     Funny story- So there is a Big Rugby tournament going on and the Tongan team, Mate Ma'a Tonga (Die for Tonga) is doing really well in it. So whenever they win families get in their cars and dress up in all red and blast music and honk! Yelling "MATE MA"A TONGA"  haha it's super funny!

Love you all
Elder Swan


Thursday, November 7, 2013

No Halloween in Tonga :( 11/3/2013

~Halloween in Tonga~
My Costume
     Mom, thanks for all the updates! I like reading about back home. Riley is gonna go pro! At least after his mission of course. I miss Tanner making me laugh all the time. Sometimes Elder Kaumavae makes me think of Tanner. I'm glad Parker's birthday and Halloween were fun. My Halloween wasn't the same. I figured, but found out for sure that they don't celebrate it here. Kind of a bummer! I was really homesick on the 31st. No kids dressed up! Nothing! But i went to the store and bought $20 of candy Haha. Me and Elder Kaumavae somewhat dressed up and just laughed.
     The work here is really good. We have a baptism set for  Silika on the 9th and we have two other investigators that want to be baptized! The language is still picking on me, I think i am just thinking to much. I know it will come and have decided to focus on the Gospel and still study the language and it will come! I finished the Book of Mormon in English, but I am doing the whole "Kolipoki" thing and reading it in Tongan and English. I'm only halfway through Jacob. But it helps a lot and I can almost always understand it. I ran into a girl from Australia last week. Her name is Sophie and she is here for four weeks. I shared a little Testimony with her and asked if I could maybe share a message with her and her family. She said that would be really nice. So I'm still trying to set that up. Heavenly Father keeps putting her in my path it seems. I absolutely LOVE reading the scriptures and studying! I feel like that's all I do! I LOVE IT! Forgive me for being all over the place. 
     Oh, It is summer here as you know and I almost die everyday. Even when it rains I'm sweating way bad. It kills me but I have an important message to share and I am going to share It. Mom I miss you like crazy! Hey, I think I might have dog again tonight?? I'm not sure how I feel about it. It was good! But it is  a dog... Oh well.. I love you!

Elder Swan

Happy Halloween
Rainy Days
Cute Kids!!!

Still Raining

My District
Elder Kaumavae, Me and my District
What I want when I get home!!!