Well, I'm here in Manado now. Sorry I didn't get to email last night, so I am a little late now. But at least we get to email!
Well, last week was awesome! We got over 21 lessons in with investigators and inactive members, which was super exciting! And we got to participate in the ordinance of Sister M. and her 2 kids, and I got to set apart and give the Holy Ghost to one of them, and that was a super cool experience! I also got to meet Elder P. a little bit before I left, which was cool!
So, yesterday was transfer day. Elder Giolas and I got up and left the house at 5:30 in the morning to go to the airport. Then we flew to Jakarta (1 hour flight), had about a 2 hour layover, so we went and ate some Krispy Kreme donuts and scones and stuff from Starbucks. It felt kinda weird eating there as a missionary...but it tasted so good to eat some good western sweets! Oh the joys of international airports, but they are mahal! (expensive!) After the layover, we got on our 3 hour flight to Manado! It was a pretty good flight--we got food! We had a meal of beef and potatoes and gravy, and it was awesome! Its pretty sad when the airplane meal is one of the best western meals you eat! Haha but it was a taste of home! But the flight was super tempting because we were on a pretty nice airline with tvs in every head rest, and they had some pretty good music and movies on them, but we stayed strong and didn't fall to the temptation!
When we got to Manado, we got picked up at the ariport by the mission couple, Elder and Sister Welch. They are awesome! They took us to their house, gave us some food, and talked to us for a while. And we met our new companions. I am with Elder Wijaya, who is pretty awesome! So I am excited! It is beautiful here! There are trees and beaches and all sorts of cool stuff! And the best part is that because we are close to the ocean, the air is clean! I can actually see the sky in this city! It feels so healthy! But there is a lot of good stuff going on here it sounds like, so I will fill you in as I find out more. But for now, things are awesome! The house is pretty nice, too, so that's good.
So we have been given several assignments by the mission president for here. First, we need to get the members more active and paying their tithing so that there can be a church building built here for the branch! The second is that there is an investigator that lives about 2 hours away, and he has a group of about 100+ people that he teaches every week, and has been teaching them out of the Liahona for a little while. We have been given permission to hold a Sacrament Meeting out there, so we are going to work to get that guy baptized and to receive the Priesthood, and then to work with his whole congregation and create a new branch out in that area, called TamRan. So that is super exciting! There is a lot going on here, but it is all in the very beginning stages, so we are hoping to strengthen things and get it going well and moving!
Oh, and there's some other cool stuff here. One, it is predominantly Christian, so that is nice! It makes it a lot easier to proselyte and stuff! The second is kinda funny. We don't have bikes here. It is all walking or riding angkots (ghetto vans with no door). But the angkots here are crazy--they have huge body kits and killer sound systems, and everyone here is always playing music. So that's kinda funny, but might get distracting! But it is awesome here, and I am super excited!
Well, I'm glad that you got all the pictures and letters and stuff, and that it all worked this time! And I am glad that things are going well at home! Thanks for the emails and pictures and everything! You guys are awesome! Sorry this is kinda short and lame, but I don't know too much about things here yet!
I love you all and can't wait to talk to you again next week! Have a great week!
Love Elder Wood