Monday, September 29, 2014

A Week in the Life of a Missionary . . .

September 28, 2014

Hello Everyone!!!

Well, this week was CRAZY!!!

Monday- PDay consisting of a barbecue and zone activity at Yigo. Had to wake up super early to go pick up trainers as this week is transfer week.

Tuesday- More meetings!! Took the trainers around with us and we did splits to cover as much of our area as possible. Met with tons of Philipinos and knocked on probably 100 different doors, and only got maybe 5 potential investigators. Such is the life!!
P-day in the Office

Wednesday- Dropped trainers off to meet with President and then ran missionaries around to the doctors and all that. Did more tracting again and hopefully find some more potential as a result.

Thursday- TRANSFERS!!! Found out that I'm still in Harmon and serving as Zone Leader with Elder Afualo, and after that, went and met the new trainees. Saw Sister Baum, who is going to be serving here in Guam. Took them around after and let them teach. Tried to go see Ethan and Demitrah but there wasn't enough time.

Guam Zone Elders with President Zarbock
Friday- Well, after a long week, finially able to get some real teaching in. Afualo and I have been doing splits so as to cover our whole area, and it's been paying off. We found tons of new investigators and taught tons of lessons. We also went and met with Jimmy and his family (Ethan and Demitrah) and had one of the most humbling experiences of my mission. We had a family home evening set up with them, but because of the trainers and transfers, we were not able to follow through with it and had no number to call and reschedule. When we met with them, they straight up told us that they thought that we had abandoned them. Darn right broke my heart, because I absolutely love this family, so we had a really good meeting about repentance and the spirit was so strong. We have another FHE set up for tonight.
Guam Zone with President and Sister Zarbock

Saturday- No baptisms for us, just went out teaching. Had some pretty good lessons, also came and attended the Family History Fair that the Church put on for the whole island of GUam, that was cool to come and learn about Family History.

Sunday-- Church, Afualo wasn't feeling too well, found out the schedule and agenda for Zone Conference this Tuesday, and tried to go find some "investigators" that say they want to meet, but are never weher they say they'll be when they say they'll be there. Zone did super good, taught a lot of lessons and had quite a few less actives reactivated.

That's my week!! Hopefully this finds everyone doing well and loving life!!

Ai tong ngenikemi meinisin!!

Elder McEwan

Monday, September 22, 2014

This Work is Everything . . .

September 21, 2014

Dear Family,

How have you been? We had a great and amazing week:)

As far as teaching right now, yes we have lots of investigators mostly Micronesian (Chuukese and Pohnpeian, which is one more language I'm trying to learn). My companion is great, his name is ELder Afualo, and he is from Samoa (ergo, another language I am currently trying to learn ;) ) and he is teaching me so much right now!! Man, I never thought that this would be so uplifting and spiritually fulfilling for me, it just blows my mind. So right now, I'm emailing at the chapel here in Barrigada, Guam with Elder Afualo, an elder from Kosrae and two of my brothers from Chuuk, one of which is my "son", Elder Fermanis. They're here to pick up new missionaries to train, and this is Elder Fermanis' second time training a new missionary. Cool thing, HIS trainee, Elder Garae (from Vanuatu) is also here training, so I get to meet my grandson AND my great-grandson (never thought I'd live to know what it feels like to be old as a missionary ;) ).

Dinner at President and Sister Zarbock's -- September 2014
Zone Conference
Dylan, that's so good about your game!! Pretty soon we're going to be seeing #3 up on big posters outside of Lavell Edwards Stadium. How'd that test go? Have they let you know yet? Continue to work out and stay active, it'll be a huge blessing later on in your mission (trust me ;) So good to hear that you are already thinking of college, but remember that you're barely 14, you've still got time to enjoy life, don't be in too big of a hurry to grow up. That's one thing that I'm learning a lot about right now, is that you need to enjoy the younger moments of your life. I'm super excited right now, and I just wanted to thank you for letting me a part of your life even if I'm a couple thousand miles away. I look at all the Deacons and Teachers and Priests and I think of you, and how excited I am to be able to "meet you" again in 5 months time. Keep praying, keep studying, keep being the awesome kid that I know that you are, and I love you so much!!

Parker, Hey there, so how was the dance? You didn't kiss her right? You look pretty good in your costume!! And good news to hear about your tour, that's awesome that you were actually able to sell some cookie dough and cinnamon rolls!! How is Mr. Bills? I know, random question, but I was just thinking of him the other day as we were singing hymns in Sacrament meeting and thought I'd ask; when is your tour? How are your classes? Any exciting news with sports? I love how much you are learning riht now, and I know that you will be glad taht you have learned at this time in your life. Never forget the small things, the "basics". That's one thing that I love about Tim Duncan, is he just does the basics and therefore is still able to be dominant at 30 some odd years old. Continue to read and studdy your books (both school and Church) and continue to go to seminary, how is that? You will be forever grateful tht you attended, of that I can promise you. Keep being fantastic and know that I love you so much!!

September 14, 2014 Baptism ~ Elder Afualo & Elder McEwan
Hey there Mom, that's so cool that you were able to spend some time with your Sisters, and that work is going well. How's the garden doing? You know, even though I live in pretty much America, I still get to use a machete and bush cut to take care of weeds, I've done that about 4 times this week. How were SEP's? Any cool/interesting stories from work? How's your calling treating you? Are you in the Primary still or Cub Scouts, I forget (sorry)? I'm doing good right now, just trying to stay busy and keep pushing forward. The ZOne is doing great right now and things are really looking up for us, right this week is transfers and there are A TON of missionaries here that will be training, the majority coming from Chuuk. Elder Fermanis is here, Elder Paulis, Elder Canakaivata, it's so fun!! I love you so much Mom, and I can't wait to see you!!

So Dad, it sounds like work is keeping you very busy. That's a bummer to hear about Brian, I feel like I'm going to have to get to know a lot of new faces when I get home. That's so cool about your YSA ward, how was the talent show? You know something, I wanted to thank you so much for helping me to understand the importance of hard manual labor, because if i didn't, I would be in sad shape right now. We just finished up helping with a huge island wide service project with all the missionaries attending, and through the whole thing, I was so grateful for you always coming in the house when you knew that I was in there just watching tv and telling me to come outside and help everyone, so thanks. I love you so much, I'm so grateful that you are my Dad, and I hope that this finds you doing well.

Hey, I love you Mom, but I need to go. Elder Afualo and I are throuwing a Zone Activity for the 3 sisters taht are leaving this week, so we need to go set up the barbeque!! Thank you!!

Anyway, things here are good for me, I'm just trying to learn as much as possible right now and stay obedient. This work is everything I thought it would be, and I'm

Some of the Elders in the Guam Zone
super glad to be where I am right now. I wouldn't have it any other way. I love you and miss you and look forward to seeing you again come Jan 30, 2015.

Well Family, that's it for this week. Not a whole lot of news, we mainly had to do lots of zone stuff this week (ie interviews, service projects, taking care of missionaries, etc.) But I want everyone to know that I love you all and I miss you so much!! Every time I go attend a FHE I feel so happy that I will get to come home and still be able to do that with my own family!! Keep being awesome and know that I pray for everyone everyday!!

With love,

Elder McEwan

Coastal Clean Up Project . . .

Guam has an annual International Coastal Clean Up event. This is the 20th year of the project and on September 20, 2014, we got to help  and "sweep" the beach! The government has this to clean up the coast and help people be aware of the need to keep Guam clean. We were all amazed at how much junk was on the beach! 
All the missionaries getting their "gear" -- yellow vests for service, buckets for junk, etc.

Elder McEwan and Sister Vave dig and pull to unbury the tire.
Then the others help to get it out of the sand.

Service with a smile :)

What a GREAT day!!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Loving Life in Guam . . .

September 14, 2014

Ngeni ai famini mi achengicheng---

Ifa usumi non ach kei ran?!! Ua men pwapwaitikemi pwe ami mi taweingaw jok!!!

Dylan, men och porausom na non ei wik!! Ua fen kuna om kana sasing, ka fakkun jaiwakawak!! :) Sopweino ne fori wisom na, pun men auchea kepwe kaeo, kepwe sinei. Ngang iei, ua pwal achocho ne keki toro nge inisi ese kon watte usum. Nge ina, kopwe jok anisi ei ika uwa niwino reom!!

Parker, uwa mochen pwe kopwe fofforuch non sikkun!! Mwa onnan!!! ;) Hahaha atakas, men och porausen BYU!! Sipwene jok anisir non iotek pwe repwe ne akufu tepetep team non ei jok ier!! Ke mi jok pwal football ika apw? Ngang ua men pwapwa pwe ke mi juwen fofforuch!! Congratulations ren omw na ke fos non ena mwichenap!! Ifa usun? Ajojo pwipwi, pun uwa mochen aipwe kunok sefan me kopwe fitiei ne kukkuno ekkis meinisin!!! Ami me Dylan!!

Mom, ai tong ngonuk mi anonnon!! Nge pwat ka fen eriaffoua ekkana student ren omw na offeni kana computer?! :D ahahah wakkakakak, just joking!! I 'm doing super well too, just trying to stay healthy and keep working hard and busy!! I'm glad that you were albe to listen to the General Authorities and learn from them!! What is your work schedule like right now? Is Christine still working at the Jr. High too? I'm doing great, just loving life!!

Dad, that's so cool that you got to see your Canadian friends again!! How was the meeting? Anything exciting going on with your ward? What'd you do for FHE? That's sad about Mike, I'm going to miss seeeing him when I get home :( That's so good that Carmelo didn't leave for LA, and we'll see if Peyton can pull someting out this year to make up for Super Bowl ;p :D

I love yo all, ai tong ngenikemi mi fakkun tekia nap seni ekkewe fuu ra masoueni nang!!

Elder McEwan

P.S. Dylan, that's super good your news this week!! I saw your picture, you're freaking jacked!! Continue to fulfill your calling, because it's super important to learn and know. Me, I'm trying to also lift weights but my body is not as big as yours. But that's okay, you'll just have to help me when I come home!!

Parker, I want you to start behaving in school!! DANG MAN!!!! :D hahahah just kidding, that's super good new about BYU!! We'll just pray that they can beat many teams this year!! Are you playing football this year or no? I'm super happy that you are doing good things!! Congratulations on your assignement to speak in that big meeting, how was it? Try hard, brother, because I want to see you again and have you come with me to hang out everywhere!! You and Dylan!!

Mom, my love to you is very deep!! But why did you make those kids suffer by turning off their computers?! hahahaha just kidding!!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Two Baptisms in Harmon . . .

September 8, 2014

Dear Family --

We also had a very good week!!! :D :D :D
Dinner at President and Sister Zarbock's
along with Leadership Council
First off, two baptisms happened in Harmon (my area). A brother and sister, Ethan and Demitrah Retuyan, entered into the waters of baptism on Saturday. Super exciting, I've been helping them for the 3 weeks or so, whenver I got here. I was so humbled because Ethan aksed me to baptise him, and now we are working with their family. Everything in Harmon is going well, Elder Afualo and I housed some of the Zone Leaders from Pohnpei and had to drive them around for shopping and such. They have gone back to Pohnpei so we will get back to "normal" now. Being a Zone Leader is rough, I'll be honest. But I love it and am learning so much. I know though, that I am being prepared for somehting in the future and I hope and pray that God will continue to support me.

Now Dylan, you are a lucky guy!! Send me some more pics of footballl please? You know that they play it here in Guam? Congrats on becoming a teacher little man, and continue studying Preach My Gospel!! :D You know what, I'm excited for us to go drivng too, I miss ya!!

Parker, make sure that you send me pics from Chicago!! Why'd Mr. Bills decide to go all the whay out there? How was the fireside? What was the topic and who all spoke? Make sure to keep reading from the scriptures and studying all those books, and cut your hair man!! :) Ya look like David Beckham!! ;D Hahah jokes!!

MGM Zone Leaders ~ What amazing Stripling Warriors
(Elders AND Sisters)
Momma, That's so awesome about your business!!! What was the project you just did, temple or just someone needing a tile? I see tiles with the "Missionary" quote, the one about missionaries leaving their families for two years so that others can be with theirs for eternity, and I always think of you!!! Anything exciting happening at the Jr. High? How about in the ward? I just looked at the pictures you sent me, and MAN!!!!! EVERYONE'S CHANGED!!!!!!! The little cousins aren't so little anymore :). I don't recognize anyone anymore, kind of like that Lonestar song, THAT USED TO BE US. I'm so grateful that you are my mom, even though that sounds super cliche and cheesy, but it's true. I love you!!

Dad, I'm so happy that you are doing well!!!! Semester just started? How many new students/ward members do you ahve? How about work? Anything new with your project/position? Anything new and exciting in the world of sports? Just want to know because I heard a rumor from the Young Men that Carmelo just signed or is thinking of signing with the Lakers? True or False? Please please PLEASE will you send me some mission stories, stuff that I can read? I don't know why I didn't talk to you about it more before I left, but I wish that I would've asked you more about your mission before I left.

Rainy P-day so we're all staying indoors ~ Still wearing
our missionary badges though :)
Family, life is good!! The Lord is good to those who keep His commandments and strive to teach others to do the same!! I ask all 4 of you, please continue choosing the right, please continue doing things that will bring you all closer to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, and I will continue to pray for you all the time!! I'm doing great, loving the atmosphere, and trying to do my very best. Sometimes it doesn't fell like it, but I know that if I do my best, the Lord will take care of the rest!!

I did have a question though. Are you guys able to send me a sweatshirt (the A/C is super BRUTAL!! especially after not having it for 19 months :)), basketball, some of the HYMNS cds (cause that's all we can listen to right now), pictures of family and friends, and some family history stories? :D

Love to all fiti ai pwos,
Elder McEwan

P.S. Thanks for checking on jobs and colleges for me, Mom, so I don't drop off the end when I get home :D

Monday, September 1, 2014

Pushing Forward and Working Hard . . .

September 1, 2014

Dear Family,

Yeah we do actually celebrate labor day. In about an hour, we are going to play softball for our pday/labor day. Every thing is going good, just trying to overcome some challenges with investigators and less actives (ie they don't want to meet with us, they'll hide from us, lie to us, etc.) but everything is good. Elder Afualo and I are doing well. This whole being a zone leader thing is a lot harder than I thought, but I absolutely love it. I love being here, because I've been able to learn so much and do so much for these people. As of right now, we are looking at 2 maybe 3 baptisms this upcoming saturday, and then september looks like a huge month for us!! We just got to keep pushing and keep working hard.

Activity with my Zone in Guam
Lately, I've been reading in the book of Alma, and my favorite chapter is chapter 5, when Alma is talking about how we all will stand before God and be judged for our works and our actions. It's just made me think a lot about who's side I'm really on. I feel like this is now more of a championship than anything I've ever played in before. THe decision needs to be now, and it needs to be clear cut: do we follow the good shepherd, Jesus Christ, or the adversary? We need to decide which team we want to suit up for, and then we need to play our hearts out. If we arent' as strong as we'd like to be, we need to start trusting GOd more. IF we are strong, we then need to help those who are not, and then encourage them to help others. I love this work, I love these people, and I can't imagine not doing this day in and day out. Sickness or none, injury or no, I am so glad that I was called to do this.

I hope this finds you all doing well, and OH!! Found out that I'll be coming home the end of January 2015!!!!!! :D :D :D

I love you!!

ELder McEwan