Samoa Apia Mission - March 2015 - 2017

Friday, April 24, 2015

Week 5

Its crazy how every week is better then the last one. This week has been really good. My companion and I have been able to help other elders in our zone work out problems in their companionships and have been able to come a lot closer to each other. My favorite thing here is seeing people grow spiritually and come closer to their Savior.

Well, I will be leaving for Samoa next Sunday. I am amazed how fast this is going by.

This week one of the 70 came and talked to us, I don't remember his name, but he talked about how to help people (including ourselves) become truly converted to the Gospel. He talked about 3 kinds of knowledge: head knowledge, heart knowledge, and soul knowledge. All three kinds of knowledge are essential to true conversion.

Head knowledge comes when we are taught about a doctrine or principle. When we understand something we have head knowledge.

Heart knowledge comes when the spirit testifies to us about what we have learned and creates desire to follow what we have learned.

Soul knowledge comes as we apply what we have learned and gain a testimony through experience.

Applying these steps has not only helped me in my personal development, but it has helped me teach my investigators and help them come unto Christ. I know that when we try our hardest to follow these steps and become converted to the Gospel then we will be blessed in our efforts.

Another important thing I've learned is that having a testimony is different then being converted. There have been people who have fallen away from the church but still have a testimony of some of the teachings. These people have head knowledge and maybe even heart knowledge, but they lack soul knowledge. They stopped acting on their testimony and so they lost their conversion.

Ou mulimau atu, Ou te iloa afai tatou te mana`o ina `ia maua se mulimou ma aeva moni converted e le talalelei a Iesu Keriso, E au one tatou mulimuli poloa`iga o le Atua, ma fa`asoa i le poto na maua i tatou.

Ou te alofa ia Outou!
-Elder Lamoreaux

Friday, April 17, 2015

Week 4

Lets see... Its crazy how fast time is going by here. Its hard to believe I'm in my 4th week. This week has been really good. My comp and I are getting along a lot better and we are seeing better obedience from our zone.
Samoan is also coming along nicely. I can speak in full sentences now so I'm quite pleased about that. Once you understand how Samoan is different from English its really not that hard. Spelling is so easy with Samoan because everything is spelled exactly as it sounds. I like that part. ;) 

I have been learning a lot about the atonement this week, its amazing because it seems that whenever I am starting to fully understand it the spirit gives me some new piece of knowledge that helps me understand the atonement even more and feel even more grateful and indebted to my Savior. I'd like to challenge all of you to study the atonement and the plan of salvation over this next week and look for the blessings that will come to each of you as you learn. 

Well ...the food here... Almost all of the elders in my zone have been gaining weight. I have gained about half a pound. Haha I now weigh 156 1/2lbs.  I have been exercising every day and also only eating salads and stuff so I haven`t gotten fat. There was one elder in my zone who just left to Fiji who gained 82 pounds while he was here. Crazy.
Well I am going to try to figure out how to send pictures so we'll see how that goes.

'Ou te Alofa ia te 'oe!
-Uso Lamoreaux

Friday, April 10, 2015

Week 3

Jace found one of his Idaho friends, Brunson, at the MTC (Brunson is going to Russia!)
Well, this week has been hard. We have some elders who don't like to keep some of the rules here and they get mad when they are corrected. I have learned a lot of humility this week as well as a lot of patience.

Samoan is coming along nicely. I know how to speak it now so its just a matter of learning vocabulary.

We got a new batch of missionaries in our zone this week. They are all going to Fiji. Our zone has missionaries going to Samoa, Fiji, Tonga, The Marshal islands, and Kiribati. Its pretty awesome. There are now only 3 Palagis (white people) in our entire zone. And 12 other elders.

A typical day here starts at 6:29 am  and has about 10 hours of classes/study time, an hour of gym time (I'm getting pretty good at volleyball) and 3 meals of cheap cafeteria food. ;)

Sorry, I'm really on a time crunch right now so I won't get to send a long email this week. Keep my zone in your prayers. :)

Ou te alofa ia oe!
 -Elder Lamoreaux

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Sending him off!

What a bittersweet day, to send a son off for two years.  But we wouldn't have it any other way.  I am so glad that he can serve a mission.

What a perfect time in life to ask a boy to dedicate 2 years to putting aside everything worldly, to focus on studying the gospel, serving others, learning to follow the spirit, and teaching the gospel. What could be a better way to help a boy become a man? I sure miss my boy, but I am so proud of him.

Driving to the MTC
Family picture by the Provo temple.

We're almost there!
Precious last hug.  I couldn't contain the tears. 
Last "goodbye"
And off he goes!
The words to this song keep running through my mind:

"Dear Lord who blesses us with love
Please send this day thy spirit from above
As this thy son, accepts a call from thee
Help him we pray, to learn humility

Direct his footsteps everyday
And keep him ever walking in thy ways
Inspire him as he spreads the gospel plan
Lord, hold him in the hollow of thy hand

In the hollow of thy hand, as he grows from boy to man
Help his understanding deepen and increase
In the hollow of thy hand, as he grows from boy to man
Let him know the special blessing of thy peace

Dear Lord, who hears and answers prayers
Please keep thy servant always in thy care
As he prepares to teach his fellow men
Oh keep him safe, and bring him home again

Protect him from all worldly ways
And always send thy spirit when he prays
Give him the courage of a righteous man
Just hold him in the hollow of thy hand

In the hollow of thy hand, as he grows from boy to man
Help his understanding deepen and increase
In the hollow of thy hand, as he grows from boy to man
Let him know the special blessing of thy peace

As he faces life's demands
May he take a valiant stand
Give him shelter... in the hollow of thy hand."

 - In the Hollow of Thy Hand, song by Janice Kapp Perry

Friday, April 3, 2015

Week 2

Well this last Tuesday Elder Nauer and I were assigned to be the zone leaders for our zone. Its a little bit scary since some of the elders have been here anywhere from 5 weeks to 4 months. Samoan is coming along. I have found that to simple questions I am in the habit of replying in Samoan and that makes me happy. I can also say prayers in Samoan and teach most of the restoration in Samoan. This week I learned the importance of Christ like love. I cannot lead and teach the people in my zone if I don't feel love for them. And also I have to love my companion if we are going to work together in leading the zone by example. As I have prayed and studied charity, the pure love of Christ, I have noticed an increase in love toward all the elders and sisters in my zone. Having the responsibility for them makes me want to be the best missionary I can be so that I can help them in any way the Lord wants me to.
Thanks so much for the package! Those cookies were amazing! ;) And the notes and oil guides were awesome as well. ;) I tried to get some pictures to send, but only some of the computers here will let me add pictures and I am on one of the dumb ones. ;) 
O te Alofa ia 'oe!
-Elder lamoreaux

[Note from Tasha: I sent him some cookies that he had made before he left on his mission.  We had put them in the freezer when he made them. I told him he'll probably get more in about 2 years. :)]

Letter to Jace from Bob:
I want to second everything that Mom said. Plus I have to say that you have an incredible Mom.
I got a little misty eyed when we dropped you off, but whenever I think of missing you I just feel so excited about what you are experiencing in the MTC. I loved my experience there and I envision you having similar experiences. It will be tough at times, it was for me, but just love your comp, the opportunity to learn, the spirit that you get to bask in. What a wonderful time...
Keep the wheels turning so God's Spirit can steer you, and run the wheels off.
Love you,