Na Vale Tabu.

Ni Sa Bula Vinaka!

My eight month mark is on the twentieth.  I’ll be halfway in February.

I love being a missionary.  I love talking to people and figuring out what really matters to them.  I love helping them learn things that change them.  There are simple truths that help people change habits and attitudes forever.  It takes time and patience, but it’s worth seeing the smile on their faces and the light in their eyes.  The Hindi elders had a baptism this Saturday, and I remember watching her walking into church on Sunday.  She was absolutely glowing and looked so peaceful and happy.  I think that knowing that she has a family in the church and knowing that things will get better has brought her a lot of joy.

We had training this week for the temple open house.  We’ve been instructed to be “the world’s friendliest tour guides”.  We’re going to be trained again tomorrow by one of the General Authorities, and we get to move into the temple patron housing.  A lot of people, have been asking why the sisters are helping with the open houses as opposed to bringing in all the missionaries.  Our mission president’s wife asked one of the General Authorities, and his answer was simple and much appreciated.  “(Sisters) are quiet, peaceful messengers of the gospel.  They are a sweet element of loveliness.”  So, I’ll be spending the next twenty-four hours cultivating as much loveliness as I can.  (Which should be an easy task considering it’s P-day and I get to spend the next three weeks seeing the House of the Lord every day and I’ll have three meals provided a day.)  I’ve been waiting a long time for this open house.  When I heard that I was going to be lucky enough to be in a mission with a temple open house, I could hardly contain my excitement.  Now that it’s actually about to happen, I’m on cloud nine.  The temple is one of the most beautiful buildings in all of Fiji.  It’s certainly the most peaceful, and the workmanship is well beyond average.  It is the most special building on the whole island and we’re inviting everyone to come and see.

At the open house, we’ll be introducing a ten-minute video, answering questions in the reception area, and typing up the comment cards everyone turns in.  We get to be the second big group that goes inside the temple, (we’ll be heading inside tomorrow).  We have to memorize some bullet points and look as nice as we possibly can.  It’s going to be three of the best weeks of my whole mission.  I can’t wait to see how much interest in the church it will generate here in Fiji.  The church is actually not well-known amongst native Fijians.  The ex-pats who stay here all know about the LDS church, but the natives are more familiar with other churches.  The temple open house is going to bring a lot of people, probably by word of mouth.

I am playing piano again in the ward and for baptisms.

Just a heads up, we’re going to be emailing on days other than Monday these next two weeks because of the temple open house.

Loloma Bibi!!

Sister Hawkins

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