Who Chose This Photo? (Not Anna).

(Anna has quit sending pictures, so I have posted a photo I took on her 19th birthday, which happened to be the Sunday before she left for the MTC.  With so much going on, I forgot to buy her a cake, so we improvised with food we had for her open house.  The following are excerpts from letters she sent to her parents and her grandfather)

Bula Vinaka!

I have eaten a whole lifetime’s worth of Indian food already.  It’s really spicy the first twenty times, and delicious after that.  I am extremely grateful for my Southwestern taste buds.  It’s really tasty, no matter how they cook it, and I have yet to try an Indian dish I don’t like.

Oh, and there’s some good news.  The sister missionaries are all going to be in Suva for the temple open house in January.  We’re going to spend two weeks living and eating in the mission home and (hopefully) doing tours of the temple.  It’s a unique opportunity, probably one of the reasons I’m here.  I’m looking forward to it.

More about Fiji since I haven’t been good about writing general letters.  Diwali is coming up (it’s an Indian holiday) so everyone has been lighting fireworks at night.  We got to go to the beach last week.  We had a picnic there, and the elder from Arizona (Elder Sterr) tried to have us play capture the flag.  I enjoyed running more than I think I have in my whole life.

We had a district meeting on Tuesday, where we got to spend time talking about the work with Elder Singh (Fiji), Elder Halbert (New Zealand), Elder Sterr (Arizona), Elder Tui (Tonga).

Wednesday was a full proselyting day.  We got three baptismal dates set up, but we have a hard time getting people to church.  A couple the sisters have been working with expressed their desire to get baptized.  R___ is the other one, she’s getting baptized for sure.  Friday we had exchanges with the STL’s,. and Sister Kora (Papua New Guinea) got to spend some time in Nausori.  We watched conference at the chapel with just the Bishop (plus his family) and his counselors.

The new apostles did a great job of introducing themselves.  It’ll be fun to see how being a general authority shapes them into something new, kind of like missionary work.  Of course, they’ve been shaped throughout their lives already, as we all are.

Fiji is beautiful.  An island paradise with fruit and vegetables worth craving and a vibrant culture.  Still trying to figure out how to draw them to the beautiful simplicity of the gospel.

Still love animals.  Even all the animals here in Fiji.  Sometimes, it surprises my companions a bit because I’m always catching lizards and frogs and going on about how pretty the chickens are here and things like that.

Two and a half months till Christmas and I get to call home.

Sister Hawkins

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