We had our first two baptisms this week! We were scrambling right before the baptism because we couldn't find any child baptismal suits anywhere. We ended up just putting white pants and a shirt on the 8 year old that was being baptized and rolling them up so it looked like he was wearing floaties. The other kid who was baptized had to be baptized 6 times because he never went fully under the water. But in the end everything worked out. After the baptism, there was a dove that somehow got into the gym, which the font room is connected to, and was flying around (the Holy Ghost anyone?) As we were taking pictures after, it landed on the basketball hoop right above us. It was pretty tight.
Our zone is really pushing to meet the goal we set of 20 baptisms back to back to back, so three months in a row. It's crazy how hard everyone's working, and we go home completely exhausted every night.
There's a missionary serving in the Marshall Islands here to get dental work done, and he's staying with my companion and I. Hopefully I'll be able to speak to him and learn more about the language!
We got a new ward mission leader this week, and he's younger than my companion, only 22! I give Elder Ukenio crap about it all the time.
I also found out this week that our ward has around 1,200 members, about 150 of which show up on a consistent basis. Because of this, we just got new couple missionaries assigned to work only with the less-actives in our ward. So now our ward has 5 sets of missionaries.
We don't have a ward council, and instead have a meeting with just the missionaries and bishop once a week. Something cool he shared with us this week is about the refiner's fire. There's a scripture, I think in Malachi that talks about it. He told us that in order to refine silver, you have to put it in extreme heat, in order to get all the impurities out. You know the silver's done when the refiner can see his reflection in the product. He then related this to Christ and said that sometimes Christ wills us to go through times of extreme heat and trial. He waits until we change, and He can see His reflection in our lives.
Everything's great in Hawaii! Hope everything's great back home as well!
Love, Elder Merrill