This was quite an eventful week! We had our first Pohnpeian group meeting!! In my e-mail last week, I talked about the people that we are working with from the Island of Pohnpei and the struggles we’re having trying to get them to church. We found a solution, however . . . bring church to them!! While in discussions about this issue with our local leaders this past week, an idea was suggested that we just hold Sacrament Meeting where they live and allow missionaries to lead the group. We really liked that idea, so the next day my companion and I went out to Tarrant where this group of Pohnpeians live and introduced the idea to them. They loved the idea as well!! In fact, it was a non-member (emphasis on non-member!) that agreed to have the Sunday service in their living room! We called our stake leaders again and got approval to do this.
Sunday morning, we got up and loaded a minivan full of about 15 chairs, a table, Sacrament trays, a music stand and hymnal sheet music in the Pohnpeian language. We drove over to Tarrant and after waking up a few people, we moved some couches, set up the chairs and held Sacrament Meeting!! Thirteen people showed up and we were packed pretty tightly in this small living room. We sang some hymns, partook of the sacrament and had one Sister give a talk in Pohnpeian. The living room was packed and the meeting was packed full of the Spirit. We really hope that this is the start of something a lot bigger. We also hope that by having this meeting, the people that came will tell all of their friends and that we will see more and more people come each Sunday.
A few weeks ago at a missionary training meeting, I gave a presentation on “commitment.” I shared two quotes that have really pushed me to be more committed in all aspects of my life. The first quote is: “Most people who fail in their dreams fail not from a lack of ability but a lack of commitment” (Zig Ziglar). The second quote is: “Courage is the commitment to begin without any guarantee of success” (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe). I think that the latter quote applies really well to missionary work. It takes a lot of courage to be committed to a purpose when you aren’t guaranteed success. However, I love how the “Preach My Gospel” manual defines success: “Your success as a missionary is measured primarily by your commitment to find, teach, baptize, and confirm people and to help them become faithful members of the Church who enjoy the presence of the Holy Ghost.” So if you are committed, you are successful! Starting this group hasn’t been the easiest thing to this point and I have a feeling it isn’t going to get any easier, but we are committed to making it happen!! I am so grateful for the success we have seen so far and I am hungry for more! I love and miss everybody back home and hope you have a great week!