Total Pageviews

Sunday, August 28, 2016

August 21, 2016

August 21, 2016

Dear Friends and Family:

Like I reported last week, all is going well here in Buota. My Yong Single Adult (YSA) companion is legitimately an awesome guy. I'm glad that I get to work with him for a month. It's not like training at all because he's good at the language. We speak in Kiribati, but his English is decent with a really strong accent. We have some good spirit-filled lessons.

The work here is going well! We should have three baptisms in the next few weeks and are working on getting three marriages done. We also brought back a Melchizedek Priesthood holder yesterday who just came to church for the first time in about 10 years. We are super duper duper busy and we are just fasting and praying to find some really good families. It's pretty hard to find lasting converts, but if we can find families who are converted by the spirit then they have a better chance of staying active.

One of my FAVORITE members from Maiana called me this last week and she's coming to Tarawa. I legitimately think she is coming just to say hi to me.  She wrote me a letter when I left Maiana and asked if she could be my "Kiribati Mom."  It will be cool to see her!

I hope you all have a great week!


Elder Parrish

Sunday, August 21, 2016

August 14, 2016

August 14, 2016

Hey fam!!  I'm doing fine here in Buota! My new companion is Taam Teebeta. He's actually a way cool guy. Obviously he hasn't been the Temple and stuff, but he is a 21 year-old guy who just got his mission call to serve in the Philippines. He is going to work with me for about a month right up until he leaves for his mission. When he leaves they will find me another Young Single Adult companion until the new intake comes in October when I will be training.

When I think of how I was a year ago, I'm pretty impressed with my new YSA companion given the fact that he is leaving his family for two years in a month, but he's happy to be spending his last month doing full-time missionary work on Tarawa as my companion. I think it shows that he's a pretty cool kid. He's a hard worker and he's way more prepared for a mission than I was when I left a year ago. He's been out with missionaries before so this isn't his first time. This is just his first time becoming a full-time missionary. He actually held a calling in his ward as the clerk and I think he's pretty on top of things.

Elder Hoskins actually just left to Maiana yesterday. He was my companion this entire week. I was super jealous that he got to go back to Maiana, but I was able to write a couple of letters and stuff for some members in Maiana and he is going to deliver them. The hardest part about being on Tarawa is missing Maiana, the members, and the life on the outies. The lessons and teaching and stuff is the same wherever you go. Sometimes I really miss Maiana, but it's hard to be sad if I truly believe that the Lord needs me here in Buota. I think Buota has a lot of potential and some exciting things should be coming up pretty soon. 

We are going to have a Zone Conference this week which will be cool! My district is a district of six sisters.  We are working hard and we are going to be putting in a lot of work with part-member families and reactivation. There are 1030 baptized members in Buota and only 70 active members. This area has TONS of potential and we need to work hard so that our branch can be made a ward. I'm happy that I'll be here for a while so that I can see some things through.

I love you guys and I hope that you guys have a great week!

Elder Parrish


August 7, 2016

Dear Family:

This mission never surprises me anymore...

Last Tuesday a car came with the ZL's and I was SHOCKED when I saw that Elder Hoskins was in the car. He was back after a quick four days apart. There was an emergency transfer and he was back on Tarawa for a week.  I thought that there was a possibility that I would get to go back out to Maiana for another transfer, but they were super-duper set on having me stay in Buota. I said last week that I was going to be comps with a kid from New Zealand, but he's now going to be Elder Hoskin's comp on Maiana. A couple of Elders went home this week, so to make a long story short.... I don't have a companion. I am going to be working full-time with a Kiribati guy who's a member of the Young Single Adults who's leaving his home and stuff on Tarawa to be my companion. He hasn't yet been to the Temple and hasn't served a mission etc. He just barely received the Melchizedek Priesthood. Talk about training...

The work in this area should be good as we have more time to find and teach. It is basically like I'm white-washing because everything was done so fast that the missionaries who worked here before didn't even show me the area. I have seen some small miracles this week as we have found a couple of families that I'm way excited about. The Branch in Buota needs some work. Transportation is a huge problem here and there are tons of less actives. Our average church attendance is about 70 each week. 

Right now, I am the DL of a small district. There are very few missionaries on Tarawa at this time--most of them are sisters. I hope this gives you guys an update... It's been a crazy week. What a cool thing to be able to be comps with Elder Hoskins again this week before he heads back out to Maiana. I love you guys! 

Elder Parrish 

Tuesday, August 16, 2016


July 31, 2016

Dear Friends and Family:

Last Wednesday, I got a call from the ZL's and I was told that my Flight had been changed to this last Friday. I guess there were some problems with Elders on Tarawa. I was so upset and my heart just hurt. More than anything I wanted to cry. I think that two families are getting baptized this week and if they wouldn't have changed my flight then I would have been there to see those families get baptized. We had so many fun farewells and stuff planned with all the members this upcoming week, but we didn't get to do what we had planned because I left on such short notice.

After the initial shock, I was somehow able to say bye to everyone and leave last Friday. We hired a car and all the members jumped on and they gave me a flower crown. We headed to the airport where they saw me off. The flight from Maiana to Tarawa is only about 10 minutes but I don't think that my tears were quite done by the time I got to Tarawa. It was so ironic because it was exactly my one-year mark. My one-year mark of my mission was a lot like the first day of my mission-- leaving a family. And to be honest, I don't know if I'll EVER see my Maiana family again. It was honestly a lot harder than leaving you guys one year ago (lolz). I was overcome with emotion by the love and the support that they showed to me on my time on Maiana. As I prepared to leave I was showered with gifts and things showing their love and I couldn't give them anything but hard missionary service. I will never forget the five months that I spent on Maiana. Best five months of my life--no doubt about it.

Now that my sob story is over... I'm on Tarawa. I'm serving as District Leader in Buota, which is actually a big adjustment. I feel like a missionary on his first full week of missionary service in a lot of ways. I think that when I hit my one-year mark, I had been to two district meetings and maybe two zone meetings. Being in Tarawa is just different. You feel the poverty so much more and you miss the wind biking and the food and everything. I miss taking cold bucket showers and being in the open air 100% of the time.

The area that I work is actually really large, but it is only a branch and there are about 80 members who regularly come to church. We go to
church at a chapel. Sacrament is done in a Mwaneaba.

I love you guys.... I hope you have a great week.

Elder Parrish