Monday, September 18, 2017

Hey fam,
It was another good week. It felt like this past week and the week before we were planting a lot of seeds for us to harvest this next week. The work has been progressing a lot and I think we are starting to work together well with the wards we work in. We have one baptism this week. His name is Sione. The missionaries have been teaching him for over a year and now that he has some problems sorted out he can proceed with his baptism. 

We had a Mission Leader's Conference and a temple session this past week which was good. It was a little unfortunate because we had two appointments and had to leave MLC early, but I learned  a lot about repentance and speaking up to other missionaries about obedience. It was really good to see other missionaries from my intake group who I haven't seen for a while. As usual, the Temple session was probably the best part. I know that each time we enter the Temple that we can learn something different. I love being in the Temple and feeling the spirit there.

The zone has been going well. I feel like the biggest difference in our zone is that now we are so, so busy. This week will be a good week for working in our area without any meetings to worry about. 

Sorry for my shortness. I love you all. Keep the commandments.

Elder Wilson

Monday, September 11, 2017

Hey Everybody.

This week has been a very good week with a lot of work to do. This transfer is going to be great. My companion Elder Vaisa and I have been getting along and work really well together. I have been able to learn a lot from him. We have set some really high goals for our area and zone this transfer. We are shooting for 10 baptisms in our area and 20 baptisms in the zone. (The last transfer we had 0 in our area and 9 in our zone.) This past week we spent time exploring leads from the last transfer and as of right now now have a list of 15 real potential investigators.

This next week we have MLC (Mission Leaders Conference) for 2 days. Then we are going to try to get out to Atata our island even though we are going to be pretty busy.  Something I liked this week in my personal study was the Parable in Luke 15. Jesus talked about a women who lost money and tried everything she could to find it. When the money was found the women was so happy she went and told everybody that they had found it. The fakatata to it is that when we repent our Father in Heaven is so happy and we should be too because we qualify to enter into his kingdom. I know we receive happiness when we repent.

Random things:
- I have taken over as driver.
- I played ping-pong at a less active house and took over their small wooden table for an hour.
- Apparently there was supposed to be a tsunami from the earthquake in Mexico but the wave died before it got to Tonga.

Ofa atu,
Elder Wilson

Monday, August 28, 2017

Hey guys, 

[HEFY - Humanitarian Experience for Youth - takes multiple 2 1/2 week service expeditions to 20 countries each summer to build homes. Levi went in 2015 where they built a home for a family with 10 children.] 

It's been another good week. This email is definitely mostly for the HEFY3 group, the group I came to Tonga with before my mission to build a house. I got to see my Tongan family again this week at a fireside and have some updates. Sorry if this doesn't make sense to anybody else .

The house:  The house is still holding up good. The boys live in the old house, and the girls live in the new house which also has a living room at the front of the house. I was able to go inside but didn't have my camera that day. They have extended the front of the house, using a tarp over the top, for a kitchen and eating area. There are about 3 cracks inside the house and they all blame me for it - haha. 
Viliami (father) is doing great. He still is a tokoni (counselor) in the bishopric and I actually get to see him quite a lot because we are in the same church building. He still is way funny and remembers when he called me out in front out everybody for getting a line in my head. Viliami still works on gravestones and with the church making the signs in front of the buildings.

Sela (mother) is still doing a great job with her responsibilities as a mother for 11 children. Yeah, she had another baby named Paula who is now ten months. They are also considering adopting another 2 kids. Crazy.
David is now preparing to serve his mission. His call has already been assigned and he is waiting for the letter now. He is working at a hotel making Chinese food. He is still insanely jacked and thinks he can take me. 
Nephi is now in form 6 at Liahona-which is equivalent to a senior in America. Cool thing in Tonga is they have started 4 football teams. He is on the team and I think he is playing tight end. He also is way jacked. 
Alisi and Beula- Both are form 5 (juniors in high school). The twins are doing good, juggling life, school, and church stuff.
Journey is doing great. She still remembers when Riley hit her in the head with a soccer ball (haha), She is currently studying at a hard school in Tonga and wants to become a solider when she grows up.
Sione is still pau'u, I remember being so confused when he would tell me his name was Sione and John, definitely the same name. 
Lupe and Rebecca are 8 and 10 and are so funny. When I went to their house they just started to try and tackle me.  
Daniela and Ana (the baby) are now grown up and super cute. 

In conclusion (this is the most I've written on my mission), the Hefa Family is till going strong. They wake up every morning 5:30 and have family scripture study. When I get to visit with them it makes me feel so blessed that God gave me the opportunity to get called back to Tonga. It was a blessing we (the hefy group) had to build their house. Every time I see somebody in their family I always remember the trip that changed my life. The Hefa family is still grateful to this day for our work even though I know we learned a lot more from them.

To all the HEFY group: Ofa atu (love y'all).  I grateful for all those on missions. I know that this is the true work. From Tonga to the rest of the world we have the amazing opportunity to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. For everyone else, get off of instagram and snapchat and go do service for somebody. The Church is true.

Ofa atu,

Elder Wilson

Monday, August 21, 2017

Forgive the short email this time. We had zone conference this past week and I really do hate teaching in front of other missionaries, but it went OK. We talked a lot about obedience and the Doctrine of Christ.

Last week I had a couple of cool experiences. I had the opportunity to go on a vilo hoa (exchange) with Elder Hansen, another missionary in Tofoa. We had a really good, productive day. Tofoa is where the  hospital is located, so the missionaries there get a lot of calls to go and give blessings. We got a call from my old companion in my old area, Elder Loto'aniu, asking us to go and give a blessing to one of my old member friends who had a stroke, and someone who I was really close with. It was a great opportunity to go see the member and give her a blessing.  Even though it was small, I know that the Lord blesses all of our lives and I count that as a blessing to be able to go see somebody I was very close with. 

Another experience happened when we went door knocking, without a whole bunch of success. We got to have one lesson with an older lady and her two sons. As the lesson went on, another man comes up, interrupts the lesson and starts speaking to us in English. Basically he just said everything Mormons preach is wrong. We were able to talk to him and the rest of the family and share our beliefs and bear testimony. The man's heart softened and he told us that he would never forget seeing us. Though I don't think anybody will get baptized from this experience, but I felt that we were able to change some attitudes about the church and plant some seeds. 

I love you all. Do good things. Reading the book of Mormon everyday brings blessings. 
Ofa atu
Elder Wilson

Baptism in last area.

Random picture of Tonga.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Hey Everybody! 

The past week has been good. Really, the main highlight was the Mission Leaders Conference we had on Tuesday and Wednesday. Since so many new leaders were called, President make it a really big thing. We started out by doing a tour of the island of Tonga and seeing all the sites. We went to see the Ha'amonga (2 big stones with a bigger one on top), a random place where the first Mormon missionaries in Tonga settled, and then some huge rock in the middle of nowhere that apparently Maui (the Tongan God) threw at some giant chicken.

After that we had the best part of MLC, the temple session. I think it has been about 7-8 months since I last got to go the Temple and it was incredible. I testify the Temple is a true house of God and we can learn so much and feel closer to Him in the Temple. I got some answers for some of the personal problems that I have been facing. It was also cool 'cause I got to do it all in Tongan and I understood it all, which was a lot different from the last time.

We then proceeded to do some activities at the Church High School and we ate really, really well. We slept in the church complex, woke up, exercised, ate breakfast then started our 7-hour meeting. We talked about our purpose and what things we can change in the Tonga mission. I learned quite a lot and it helped my testimony about exact obedience. I know that all blessings come from obedience and that if we missionaries can be obedient we can see miracles.

Besides that a HEFY group came and left. I got to see and talk to my good friend Greg from my HEFY experience and meet Sister See and her son from our new Pleas​​ant Grove ward. It's really cool to see the connections that can be made out here in Tonga.

Work has been going OK. We're struggling to work effectively but I think that my companion and I can tear up this area. Hopefully we can get out to our island this week.

Ofa lahi atu, 
Elder Wilson

Here are some pictures from the last few weeks:

Big rock that came in on a Tsunami, called the Maui rock.


Burning the shirt at the year mark.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Hey everybody,

Life has been good on this side of the world. This will probably be a very quick email today. The new area has been good and I'm looking forward to progressing the work in Puke and Hofoa. Hopefully we can also get out to [the island] Atata this next week.

In Sunday School the topic was Joseph Smith in Liberty Jail. D&C 121 is such a good chapter. We all have our challenges and trials, and some are longer and harder than others, but we all have somebody who descended below all of those challenges and trials for us. And, none of us are like Job who had his own friends reject him. I am grateful for an amazing family and friends and all of their support. 

Do good things, don't do bad things.

Love you!
Elder Wilson

Monday, July 24, 2017

Malo tau lava,

This week has been an up and down week and another transfer. We had three baptisms planned for this past week but unfortunately two of the investigator's parents didn't give them permission to get baptized which was a really big bummer. Neumai and Lui had such strong testimonies of the church and were very educated. Our other investigator Lavili was able to get baptized on Saturday. She is crazy smart, knows English almost perfectly and has an amazing voice. It was really fun to teach her and get to know her.

After 6 weeks in Longolongo I am getting transferred to... the next town over in the same Stake and same District. President called me yesterday and asked if I would serve as a zone leader in Hofoa and Puke. My new companion is Elder Teutau from Tonga. He's been out over a year and we already know each other really well cause we were in the same District. As a zone leader I get to cover the "Motu" (island) of Atata - the one I talked about last week. I think we are going to try to get out there once every week. 

I really am going to miss Longolongo and Halaovave. It was kind of a bummer that I was only there 6 weeks. I got pretty close to some people and the work was starting to get really good. But I'm in the same Stake so I'll get to see everybody again.

I love you all. The little things make the big differences, so read the scriptures.

Elder Wilson