The Institute is going to have a garden! Bro Moses Magoon has designed a flower garden for us, and started by just raking topsoil over the grass and planting flowers. He told us that’s how it’s done here – wish that would work in Wyoming!
Pita came in to visit and told us all about the history of cannibalism in Fiji. Not great lunch conversation, but it sure was interesting, and we’re glad they don’t eat missionaries anymore.
Tuesday December 8th Sister Alldredge organized a “One-third Anniversary Party” to celebrate the first six months of our mission. The Alldredges and Martins entered the MTC the same day we did – June 8th. It was fun to remember how we felt in the MTC, and talk about what we have learned since we’ve been here.
Thursday was Sister Knight’s birthday, so we celebrated by going to dinner with them and the Alldredges, and then to a Christmas concert at the Civic Center. It was an absolutely beautiful night, and the concert was incredible!
Sosi Nawatu was in the choir and performed a duet that was so good the crowd went crazy. The choir was led by the father of another one of our wonderful YSAs, Savaira Veikoso. They performed everything from beautiful hymns in Fijian and English, fun songs like Jingle Bells, and the Hallelujah chorus – with a Meke (Fijian war dance) in the middle! Brother Veikoso sang with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir for two years, and now runs a music school here in Suva. His amazing choir is now on their way to perform in Australia.
Saturday our ward rented a bus, and we all went to the beach for our ward Christmas party. Seemed like everybody in Suva had the same idea, but it was fun to see so many people having fun. There were probably twelve volleyball games going on up and down the beach.
Sunday morning we visited the Nacinu ward. They have a great group of YSAs!
The Suva Fiji Stake Presidency just happened to also be visiting, and spoke in sacrament meeting. Pres. Varea commended us for all the good we do during the Christmas season, but then reminded us of how, after the Bread of Life sermon, there were many of Christ’s disciples who “walked no more with him” (John 6:66). He asked if our good deeds would continue after Christmas, or if, come January, we would “walk no more with him.” What a good question to contemplate.
Sunday was our FHE with the senior couples at the mission home. We sang, watched the First Presidency Christmas devotional (which was wonderful!), and passed out Christmas goodies Sister Knight and I made. It’s starting to feel a lot like Christmas! We are so thankful for this special, sacred time of year. We may not have snow, but we have beautiful palm trees waving.
What a blessing it is to have this time to remember Christ. Merry Christmas!