Saturday, August 29, 2015

Many "Until We Meet Again's"

We heard from our Heber 8th Ward Bishop back at home in Utah and we will be speaking in church at 9:00 am on September 20th (600 S 1200 W). That's the same day as Elder and Sister Roberts, my brother-in-law and sister will be speaking in Wales Utah, as they have been serving in the Urdaneta Philippines Mission.

Sister Martin and I had the opportunity to speak in the Barrigada ward last Sunday. It seems no mater how many times we speak in church, we're always a little nervous. Although I will admit, it wasn't as bad as previous talks, since we were speaking to so many new friends, about blessings of being on a mission.

When we arrived Sister BerlynTaiwerbei put leis on us just before the meeting started, it really sank in how soon we would leave them. She said, she wanted to set us off "island style."

We're definitely in that bitter/sweet sad to leave the mission, yet so happy to see family and start attending the temple again.

We will miss the many wonderful people we have worked with at the Guam Service Center. We didn't have the opportunity to say goodbye to some of them on our last day. They were great.

It's been quite the experience turning over the office reigns to the new office couple. Make sure to look at their blog.

Elder and Sister Hamilton's Blog

Some happy pics from the office.

Sister Martin, Sister Aviata, Sister Baum

Elder Gibb and Elder Striplin in the office

FYI...We Googled Elder Striplin's name (Dakota Striplin) and found he is quite a singer.

We had our final FHE dinner at the Mission Home and an opportunity to say goodbye to the wonderful Senior Couples. It was also a welcome to Elder and Sister Williams, the new Family History couple. They will do great.

Elder and Sister Guercio, Elder and Sister Thomas, President and Sister Zarbock

Elder Martin, Elder and Sister Williams, Elder and Sister Hamilton, Elder and Sister Guercio

We had the opportunity of greeting the Williams at the airport.

Elder and Sister Williams at the Airport

We've started to say a few goodbyes to some of the missionaries and ward members. We love them all. Here's a few pictures we took of the events.

They said they rarely use the kitchen since so many ask them over to dinner

Sister Martin with Sister Baum and Sister Aviata
We gave Elder Holmes some of my shirts and pants. He said they will get used more. Elder Canakaivata said he loaned one of his shirts to Elder Tafuna since his shirts were mostly worn out.
Elder Canakaivata, Elder White, Elder Kjar, Elder Beard, Elder Holmes, Elder Leota, Sister and Elder Martin

Brother and Sister Fee (Barrigada Ward) and Brother and Sister Goraty (from Kauai)

We had the Assistants over for dinner a couple of weeks ago. 

Elder Striplin looking at the Chicken pot pie Sister Martin made
 They are great missionaries and a great help to the mission.

Elder Striplin, Elder Gibb, Sister Martin, Elder Martin
Final Farewells at the Mission Office 

Sister Calder and Sister Misinale

Sister Taumuefalau and Sister Talakai

A few new missionaries had just arrived as we were heading off to the airport

We’ll end with a statement we made on our mission blog last November. “It's an amazing blessing to be around these great missionaries who have chosen to give their time and resources for 1 1/2 to 2 years for unselfish, unpaid service to the people of Micronesia and to the Lord Jesus Christ who we love and serve. All the glory and all the credit, goes to God for all the good works that may be accomplished here”.

We will post our talks in a few weeks.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

The Buzz of Missionary Work - Excitement & Enthusiasm

We're always excited to see the other missionaries.
Elder and Sister Martin and Sister Aviata
 We had the opportunity of attending a baptism for the Yigo ward area. This father baptized his wife and daughter. His other daughter sang a song at the baptism. Beautiful. She is a strong member with a testimony. She may serve a full time mission someday.

A great day for a baptismal service

Elder Tafuna gave the talk on baptism.

Sister Martin looking great as usual

These two sang a song during he baptism service - Awesome
There was a dinner after a funeral the other day. I took a few pictures of the missionaries. Always excited to have their pictures taken.

Elder Soriano, Brother Michael, Elder Roberts

Elder Canakaivata and Elder Holmes

The senior couples had a little game of bowling on the Navy base for Family Home Evening recently.

Elder Martin ready to get a strike. Ha ha, only got three.

Litttle adventures - Tank Farm, Museum, Asan Falls a Secret Beach and more

Tank Farm
We had another opportunity to have a break from the office and go on a little adventure with Bishop Davis. We drove over to Leo Palace Resort. After going through the main entrance, we turned right at the main road. Then just before entering the private housing, which has a guard posted, we turned right down a little one-lane road which takes you down to the scenic overlook. We parked on the grass, walked up the stairs, turned left until their was an opening in the fence.

view of our car from the top of the stairs

Sister Martin and Bishop Davis about to spot the tank
There were a lot of wild orchids blooming along the path.

We found it!

Sister Martin on the Tank

Bishop Davis and Elder Martin

Elder and Sister Martin by another armored vehicle with the tank in the background 

Heading back we decided to cross through the swamp. I crossed at a deep place but after seeing me, Sister Martin and Bishop Davis found a shallow spot to cross.

I forgot that our new smart phone was in my front pocket. Thankfully, a thought popped into my mind to take the battery out and put the phone in some rice when we got back. The phone is fine, but the red mud stained some of our clothes. Bishop Davis threw his socks and shoes away after this hike.

We went to the Pacific War Museum that we hadn't been to before.

Sister Martin

Elder Martin

Next we went to Asan Falls.

We followed the directions in our hiking book and found the place quickly. When we got close, there was a steep incline so Sister Martin stayed up above while Bishop Davis and I went down to Asan Falls. The First falls at the top had another name called Tony falls.

Tony Falls

All at once, Bishop Davis said, "It smells like rain, let's hurry back to the truck". I couldn't smell anything. Sure enough, as soon as we got back to the truck it started raining pretty hard.

While it was raining we drove by Masso Reservoir. Too rainy to explore that area.

Secret Beach (We couldn't find a name anywhere so that's what I'm calling it)

We drove down a few roads and found one road that took us all the way to a new beach. From Rt. 15 we drove down a road next to Eagles Mart. One road takes you down to the Guam Agriculture Development & Training Facility. Just before you get to that facility, there was a newly created road that doesn't show up on the maps.

Sister Martin on Secret Beach

Big Crabs on Secret Beach

Elder Martin sitting down to check out some big crabs running around.

Looking south towards Fadian Cove

Another great day to explore some of the great sites Guam has to offer.

After we finished we all went to a great Chinese restaurant called Spring Chinese Kitchen. Sister Fee from the Barrigada Ward recommended it. The secret is ordering off of the Chinese menu and not the one in English which only has the Americanized Chinese dishes.

Several days earlier, we went with Elder and Sister Thomas to a few places on Guam.

Gadao's Cave

Elder and Sister Thomas 

At Gadao's Cave

Talaifak Spanish Bridge

Fort Soledad - Built 1810

Elder and Sister Thomas and Elder Martin at Fort Soledad

    Looking back at the Umatac bridge.

 Leo Palace Resort and the Tank Farm

Sister Martin with Elder and Sister Thomas at Leo Palace - Tank Farm in the far distance

Tank in the distance
Several days later we went back with Bishop Davis to see the Tank Farm close up.

Here's another great restaurant on Guam that we tried with the Elder and Sister Hamilton. Asu Smokehouse at Chamorro Village. The beef brisket just fell apart and the flavor was excellent.

For all you who may be wanting to serve a Senior Couple LDS Mission,  Guam would be a great choice. The people are great, the little outings are great, the food is great, the work is true and definitely worth it.