Dear Family, June 26, 2011
My heart is full of overwhelming joy and happiness. These moments in life make life worth living and allow us to feel a little bit of what Heaven will feel like someday. I don’t know how to describe to you what I’m feeling. I know this powerful feeling of love comes only from one place....from God the Eternal Father. I know that this love was shown in one of the most extreme expressions of love when the Savior of the world, the Lord Jesus Christ performed the Atonement. I am forever grateful for the Atonement. I hope and pray that each of you will allow the Atonement to enter into your own lives. Let it purify, clean, and allow you to have the Holy Ghost into your heart. I know that God lives, that is Son Jesus Christ is my savior...I not only hope those things....I absolutely know them for a fact. I know that the Holy Ghost has made them manifest to me. I know that the Fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith. I know that the Book of Mormon is a sacred and holy record given to us in these last days to understand the teachings of the Savior. I have a solid Testimony of that book. I love reading its pages and learning from the holy prophets of old and the experiences they had with God. I can feel the power in the Book of Mormon confirm to me that the only true and living church on the face of the whole earth is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I love the knowledge of the Plan of Salvation which makes it possible for families to be together forever. I would love to say a lot more but because of time I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ Amen.
I just thought I’d share my testimony with you. I have a strong testimony and I wish I could write more of it. I just love all of you so very much. Thanks for everything you do for me! I am so glad to hear that everyone is back safely and that all of you had such wonderful and amazing experiences. Thanks for sharing them with me. I also have had so many incredible things happen this week.
Last P day we played sports for hours. It was so much fun to run around and play some sports. We played basketball, football, and some rugby. Wow I haven’t really said much about rugby...it’s so fun. I’m not that great at it....it gets confusing compared to football. But it’s a lot of fun. I’ve played it in Niue a lot and now a couple of times in New Zealand. Tuesday we had a wonderful District Meeting. The spirit was so strong and I could feel the power just lift all the missionaries. It’s such a blessing to work with such great missionaries. They are all some of my best friends and I love them all. That’s one of the hardest things about a mission...is saying goodbye to the people you love. Well we just went crazy talking to people of Tuesday. We talked to 50 people and it was great just to be urgent on sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. It rained and rained this week and we got really wet. The grass here is just so muddy. I was able to do some really good baptism interviews this week. Thursday was amazing. We went on a trade off with the zone leaders. Elder Naicker and Elder Haight stayed in our area and I went to the Zone Leaders area with Elder Aldridge. It was awesome. We worked so hard and had some miracles. Wow I learned a lot from him. He is a great missionary. We got to go to Hikurangi which is a beautiful place. We met one of the returned missionaries in their ward over by the shops. He just got back about a month ago. He bought us heaps of food and stuff. Later that day we went to Punuruku. It is a beautiful place on the coast of New Zealand. Wow its breath taking there....amazing views of the ocean. We did some really wonderful work there and one of the YSA preparing to serve a mission came with us. We had some great lessons. I interviewed one of the ZLs investigators for baptism. Then we drove out in the country more to go to one of our teaching appts. It was at this farm house in the country side of the coast. It was a kiwi family and they had a lot of kids at their house. They had a lot of young adults there from around the world working at this high adventure camp they run. There were a lot of people from Europe. It was so cool to meet all of them. Then the mom and the dad rounded up as many of their kids and their friends who wanted to listen to the missionaries. It ended up being 12 non-members above the age of 15 listening to our message!! That is the most people (investigators) I’ve taught all at one time. They are all Catholics. We taught a powerful Restoration Lesson. The spirit was very powerful and I could literally feel the Holy Ghost helping me know exactly what to say. They had a lot of questions but we were able to answer all of them. At the end of the lesson we gave them some Book of Mormon’s and committed them all to read and pray to know if the book was true. It was such a great experience I’ll never forget. After the lesson was over it was too late to drive all the way back to Whangarei so we stayed the night at a members home in Punuruku. (of course with permission from President Porter). They live right on the beach and its just incredible there. There is no road to get to where they live....so you just drive right on the beach. I took some really good photos. It was so fun and an experience
I’ll never forget. I just loved it.
Well guess what....we had an incredible miracle from the hand of the Lord happen to us this week. So, on Friday night we had a dinner with Hones aunty...Sister Kake. Well it was a miracle but guess what Hone came back to Whangarei!!! YAY! He decided he wanted to come back and continue to be taught by us. He told us he had an experience that just made me so happy. He said his grandma took him to buy a new coat. He saw two coats....one was a worldly (gangster sweater) or he saw a suit coat (church one). He said he prayed to know which one to get and he decided to get the suit coat....!!! This is a 14 year old kid (mind me he looks 18) Wow we were so happy. Well we invited him to come to the baptism of Destiney we would be having the next day. Well yup Destiney Rogers was baptized on Saturday!! YAY!! It was an incredible baptism, wow the spirit of the Lord was so strong. Her whole family came. The music was amazing. Everything went so good....Elder Naicker baptized her. Well after the baptism Hone said he felt the spirit and that he wanted to be baptized!! WOW!! So we took him into the room went over the things we've taught him. Asked him questions, prayed, and then we got confirmation from our leaders to baptize him the next day!!! The zone leaders came down to do his interview! He passed! So Yesterday an hour before church Hone was baptized. Then he and Destiney were confirmed and then Hone received the Aaronic priesthood in the 3rd hour! What a miracle from Heavenly Father. Hones baptism was great. Elder Naicker was blessed to do it. Wow I felt the spirit way strong...the Lord answered my prayers. Everything about that experience was an absolute miracle.
I am so glad to hear Ryan loved Heritage Tours. Wow I loved his letter so much. It brought back so many wonderful memories for me. I wish I could talk to him over the phone....or better in person. Haha....well I will have to e mail a letter to him next week because I have to go soon. I’m happy to hear Mandy Got married again! :) tell her congrats and that I love her very much. I’m so happy for them. I can’t wait to go to their sealing. Awwww I love this gospel so much. Mom I loved the experience you wrote about going to the mission zone conference. It touched my heart and I’m so glad you were able to have that experience....you know a little bit about the mission experience. That’s so cool you were able to meet that missionary....I think I remember him. Wow I’ll have to go meet him when I get back. Thanks for sharing that experience. Well I love you mom and have a great time down in Arizona! Tell everyone hello and that I love them all so much. I couldn’t ask for a better extended family!
Love Elder Kitchen