Thursday, December 21, 2017

12-17-17 This last week was incredible

Cola vinaqwa, na noqu matavuvale wananavu sara! 

Tamaqu, au sa set tu sara. Au sa marau sara na cakacaka oqo, sa taleitaka tiko na noqu veiqaravi kei na vanua oqo. Sa vakila tiko na veivuke ni Yalo Tabu kaukawa cake mai na noqu kaulotu taucoko. Kila ga au sa marau, au sa cakacaka kei masulaka vakakaukawa tiko ga. (Herb, kerekere correctaka mada na veikakece ca oqori!)

This last week was incredible, one of the more memorable weeks of my mission. I was finally able to see Elder Green for the first time in nearly 18 months, and the reunion was beautiful. He's grown so much as a man and as a missionary, it was SO nice being able to hang out with him and Elder Hunkin over Monday and Tuesday! I noticed that not many intake missionaries are very close to one another for one reason or another; maybe the intake was too big and thus the members weren't as unified, or the intake missionaries were just too different from another. I LOVE my intake elders, and I still consider every one of them brothers. I'm so grateful that the Lord had me wait for the time that I did to serve a mission. I know without a single doubt that I came to Fiji at exactly the time I was supposed to with exactly the people I was supposed to come with. I firmly believe that my mission would not have been nearly similar to what it has been if I were brought in any earlier or later, and though it hasn't been easy to the least bit, it's been exactly what I've needed. I love this work so much. I've been able to partake of the fruits of my labors and witness that fruit spring from home as well for my family to partake of. Surely you do reap what you sow, and the sowing thus far has proven worth every drop of sweat.

Zone conference on Tuesday was awesome. I left my notes home again so I don't remember exactly what the trainings were about, but it gave me a greater perspective on Christmas. Growing up, and for most kids I feel like, the highlights of Christmas include the decorations, the festive foods, the company, and especially, the presents. As I've grown to more fully know and appreciate the true meaning of Christmas, I've come to know that the greatest gift that anyone could ever receive has already been given to us, a long time ago. This gift isn't one that we can overuse or wear out; it isn't something that can be stolen or broken. This gift is eternal; this gift is Christ. Christmas is the time that we celebrate the greatest gift the world has ever received, wrapped in swaddling clothing rather than wrapping paper and humbly placed in a manger rather than a box, given to each and every single one of God's children rather than a few. As yous get together with the family and enjoy eachothers' company, remember the savior. 

We spent Tuesday night in Sigatoka and head out into Nasivikoso, where I'd be conducting my first baptismal interviews, first thing Wednesday morning. Along the way, we picked up Atu Sigadrodro, who would translate the interview for me. Surely enough, not only did the first young man whisper everything he said in a dialect I couldn't begin to decipher, he did not speak any English. Fortunately, the second young woman spoke a little bit of English and I was able to conduct most of the interview in very simple English. It was a nerve wracking experience, but a really spiritual one. Somehow, eventually, I was able to grasp a good majority of what was shared between Atu and the interviewees. Though I often got lost, the spirit was always there to put me back on track, and he ultimately told me that those two were indeed willing and ready to make the baptismal covenants with our father in heaven. It was incredible, and I really look forward to the opportunity where I get to do one of these interviews in English or even Hindi! Living in the islands, you get to experience what we call "island time", which is basically It'll happen when it happens. I was always under the impression that Fijian time and Hawaiian time were basically the same thing. However, when you're in an interior koro, you get to experience true Fiji, and thus TRUE island time. After taking us on a hike through the valley, Atu sat us down in front of some food a member prepared for us while we were away and said "Kana, vakacequ mada vakalailai, sa qai cakava na interview (Eat, rest a little bit, then we'll do the interviews)." So we ate, and Atu decided to take a three hour nap. We ended up finishing our business in Nasivikoso a lot later than we initially anticipated, and Elder Tui'one and I were able to get back into Sigatoka just in time to catch the last back heading back into Nadi. 

On a side note, Nasivikoso is one of the most beautiful places I've been to in Fiji. It's a nice little koro in the middle of Fiji, a little over an hour drive into the interior, and seemingly in the middle of nowhere. Such a humble group of people, too. 

Sorry if the email is all over the place already, it's hard to focus with this weird island Christmas techno blasting through the café.

We had our ward Christmas party on Friday night, where they asked the missionaries to perform our sasa from zone conference and then perform a separate number as companionships. We did the sasa as a district, the district elders did tika tonu, the STLs did a taualuga and a lakalaka and the other sisters sang a Maori song. It was way fun and we were able to talk to heaps of nonmember friends and family members of our members. 

Saturday was nice and busy, cleaned the chapel in the morning then was able to find a good amount of people before our lesson with Halamehi.

Halamehi is a cousin of one of our members and is staying with them for the holidays while her mom is working in Vanuatu. She said that while in Suva, she heard about the church and it interested her. She saw a great opportunity to learn more when she found out she'd be spending the holidays with her family that happened to be members. She came to church last week with them, we were introduced and asked to come over and teach Halamehi. It was such a beautiful lesson, and Halamehi is probably the most prepared person I've ever met. Her only issue is that her grandmother is a staunch catholic and she's unsure that her grandmother (who practically raised her) would accept her changing her denomination. We testified that this is what God wanted/needed her to do, and that He will prepare a way for her to be baptized on January 9th, 2018. She's SO ready already, and I'm SO excited for her baptism.

We had the Christmas cantata last night, which went really, really well! I honestly think that my solo went better than it has in any practices, which I saw as a tender mercy. I think the fact that I didn't know anybody in the crowd helped with my confidence, but tonight, the cantata will be in Nadi for the Nadi ward. Hope all goes well, haha.

Okay we have to head out now, but I'll keep in touch to finalize skype details! I love you all so much, 


Loloma sara yani, au lomani kemudou saraga. Kalougata tiko! 
Ham aaplogke bahut pyaar karta hei, khyaal rakna! 

Elder Ishibashi 

Sunday, December 3, 2017

12-3-2017 District Leadership

Kaise hei parivaar!!

Maika'i no, makuakane! Pehea 'oukou? 

Man, I'm so happy that Makana's finally out there! Too bad it'll be a solid 2 and a half years before I see him again, but I'm glad that he's granting my final request to him (don't be at my homecoming, be on a mission). Makana is gonna be a KILLER missionary in the DR, can't wait to hear his Spanish when he gets home. Glad yous returned home in safety! And thank you so much for the pictures, it's super nice to see everyone's faces! I love that picture of all the siblings together, it looks like such a sweet and humble reunion. I just realized it's winter there, maqe it must have been cold there aye?
Anyways, awesome to know yous had a great week!

SO yeah! Last week was transfer week and a very humbling one. 
So the Nadroga disctrict, of which I've been a part of for the last four and a half months, consists of five companionships (ten missionaries), making it the largest district in the mission.
All but one companionship in our district remained the same. I'm still here in Nadi with Elder Tui'one, which was a huge shock to both of us because trainers seldom follow-up their trainee. I've never been in an area for more than three transfers, so this will be my first six month area! 

So the Nadroga district was called so because the district leader, Elder Jackson, was stationed in Sigatoka in the Nadroga province. The area the district leader serves in determines the name of the district. Elder Jackson was transferred to Suva, and the Nadroga district became the Nadi district when the leadership position was passed on to me. 

I've held this position for about five days now, and man, it's tough haha. There's a lot more responsibility involved than I'm accustomed to; a lot more phone calls, setting time apart for exchanges with my district elders, and a lot of receiving and passing on instructions. I'm really grateful for the opportunity because it certainly does allow me to be more involved with my district members and help them on a broader scale. I actually really love my district members. I often catch myself doubting my ability to lead such an incredible group of missionaries, and my district members seem to catch the same vibe. They've only been super supportive and seem excited to be under my leadership, so I'm excited to lead and help them in any aspect of the work that I can. Tomorrow, I'll be conducting my first district meeting and going over all that district business I've only ever had to report in. I'm a little nervous but so excited at the same time, we're looking at a good transfer!

Looking at the upcoming weeks, Elder Tui'one and I have a really busy transfer ahead of us, too! 

This week, the Miss Pacific Islands Pageant will come to Fiji and there will be a huge festival held in Nadi. When I first got to Nadi, there was a huge fair going on and Elder Kioa arranged with a member for us to be able to have a booth set up. We had stacks on stacks of Book of Mormons and pamphlets for people to take freely and we were able to find a lot of people interested in the gospel. We'll be doing the same thing at the pageant festival, so I'm stoked for that. We also have a Missionary Christmas Cantata coming up for the stake, which I have a part in. Sister Harper (who's in charge of arranging the cantata) asked me to do a solo when she heard me sing for a musical number at a ward baptism. I couldn't promise anything until transfers were set and we knew I'd be staying. We were both about 90% sure I'd be leaving, so she gave the part to an elder that just came into the zone who she was about 90% sure would stay. He left. I stayed, and I have to sing With Wondering Awe in a key that's sliiightly too high for me, but I can hit the notes if I belt them. She's more willing for my voice to crack in front of the stake than to transpose the song to a lower key. We practice before qito today, we'll see how that goes haha. We have musical numbers and cultural items we need to practice as a district for our Christmas zone conference in a few weeks. 

OH also, I may be coming home speaking better Fijian than I initially anticipated! I found out that as a district leader, I don't NEED to pick up Fijian fluently, but it helps significantly when conducting baptismal interviews with people that don't have super good English and when a translator isn't available. Next week, I'm heading up into a village called Nasivikoso in the Sigatoka area to conduct a baptismal interview with someone that doesn't speak a single word of English (or Hindi, obviously). Not only that, but apparently a vast majority of the people in Nasivikoso don't even speak or understand vosa vakabau (the universal dialect). They have and speak only their village dialect, vosa vakanasivikoso. Elder Dempsey assures me that I'll have a translator there to assist me, but it'll definitely be interesting!

Anyways, that's what's coming up, and there's a lot more! Heaps of finding opportunities, I'm juiced. The last week was good, a lot of visiting families I told we would come by to say where I was being transferred and to say goodbye, only to tell them I'd see them on Sunday. We were able to see and meet with a lot of people. We're seeing a lot of referrals coming in from the members, which is awesome! WAY useful, if yous have friends that need/ that you reckon might accept the restored gospel, refer them to the missionaries!!

I woke up early this morning to be able to see Sister Otea and Sister Nawaiya off at the airport. I can't believe they're finished, I remember the first day we all met in the classroom in the MTC. Their English was wayyy limited and I could rarely understand what they were trying to say. It was pretty sweet being able to converse with them in perfect English before they boarded their plane back home to Kiribati. They've grown so much and come so far, I'm way proud of them.

President Higgins, to show the Hindi program that he cares about us and acknowledges our efforts, has arranged for every Hindi area to be able to hold a conference skype call every Wednesday. We hook up with the Nausori stake president, President Goundar, who trains us on the language and teaching methods for one hour. Last week's conference call was really cool, I'm excited for the next one! 

This next week is looking promising, we're about to find HEAPS of people. 

Herb, I met some of your friends in church yesterday! They said they were going back home to graduate before they came back to Fiji, so if I needed anything that I'd be able to ask you and you could send it back with them. Mom and dad, if you haven't already sent the package, I think you can send it with them. If yous have though and if it's possible, Herb, could you just send some more size 15 white shirts? Sorry I forgot to say that last week, mom, but I think that's all I really need. Vinaka sara vakalevu na tuakaqu wananavu, kemuni sa raica oti na yaloyalo o koya na nomu itokani a sendtaki vei kemuni? Vosoti au, au se bera ni matai na vosa vakaviti, sa vuli tiko ia! Kua ni leqa, kedaru na veitalanoa sara ena gauna ni noqu lesu tale mai. Au lomani kemuni vakalevu, loloma sara yani vei na matavuvale!

We're heading out now, have another incredible and blessed week! 
Ham aaplogke bahut pyaar karta hei, yaad karo: iis susumachaar sachei, himaat karo khali. Jab hamlog Ishu Masih ke vishwaas karo tab tagat milega taki hamlog sakta khoichiij kare. Bahut mushkil hei iila kam, aur dhir taklif hei, lekin ham iis saab chiij bahut julum lage. Dhanyavaad aaplogke saabchiij ke wastin, firse ham aaplogke bahut pyaar kare, khyaal rakna!

Elder Ishibashi 

The is the only picture I could manage for now. Sister Patane said that her family is really close to the Snows in Utah! I'm also not the only Hawaiian in the mission anymore! 

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

11-26-17 Last week was good!

Kasie hei??

Dad, thank you so much for your letter, I really liked it! SO glad to know the family is back together for the first time in so long and that everybody's enjoying each others' company. It was small kine mosi hearing about the food but it's alright, we had our own thanksgiving feast this week haha.

I'm SOOO happy that the church opened its arms and doors for Uncle Juney and Uncle Dan at this critical time in Uncle Juney's life. I'm even happier that because of this act of charity and love, Uncle Juney would again embrace the gospel. Though Uncle Dan's death certainly wasn't a good thing, I think it's such a great blessing that Uncle Juney was at least able to find a good man with a background in the gospel and through his partner's faith was able to have a stronger grounding in the church at his passing. Please continue to give my aloha to the family and Uncle Juney, especially. Also give my aloha to the Aloisio's, if can! SO sick that you were able to see them! 

I always heard about the live sessions in Utah and everybody who's attended one says they're really interesting. I'm way keen on attending one myself, some day! It's pretty weird but actually really cool to see pictures of yous in front of the Salt Lake Temple! STILL pretty salty that they didn't let me go to Temple Square when I was in the MTC because both my companion and I were both Americans, but I'm glad you were able to visit your old proselyting area, dad! How cool is that? Also liking the goatee, I haven't seen that in years haha. 

Does any of your siblings speak Samoan, mom? How much Samoan do you understand? I'm really looking forward to learning Samoan when I get home. At this point (after three Tongan companions in a row), I know more Tongan than Samoan haha. Still learning, though. 

Anyways, this last week was good! 
It was Elder Tui'one's week 11, which means that he was the senior companion for the last week. He lead every discussion, set every appointment, OYM'd every person, and made almost every phone call. I'm actually really proud of him for the way he handled and lead the work beautifully, and I have no doubt that he'll make a great leader in the mission some day. I was able to see his full potential and efforts as a senior missionary. I never had my week 11 due to my stubbornness as a junior companion and unwillingness to take responsibility over the companionship/area. I remember having really sour feelings toward my companions because they never let me teach or disregarded every idea I had concerning the work. I tried really hard to make sure I always gave Elder Tui'one opportunities to grow and mature so that when I time came for him to take initiative, it'd be something he was used to. He's a MUCH more humble and ready missionary right now than I was at that stage, and I only have the Lord to thank for giving me someone with such a drive and love of the restored gospel as him.
A big part of the training process is watching The District. As a trainee, I didn't like The District. As I watched, one of the only things running through my head was "We can't do that in Fiji, the people wouldn't react well to that", or "We can't apply that to our ward, things work differently here". Now, I LOVE the district. I've been glued to it for the last 11 weeks, studying and re-watching episode after episode and doing my best to apply the teachings. No, we can't apply a lot of the precise things they do and say in The District here in Fiji, but the principle is the same everywhere. As we've applied these principles, Elder Tui'one and I have been able to see a lot of success in the work! 

Elder Tui'one and I were blessed to witness the baptism of Charmaine yesterday! It was a really special experience because Charmaine was able to be baptized by her father, who hasn't been able to attend church in over a year. He received permission to baptize her, and my hope is that he and the rest of the family will be able to and have the courage to come back to church regularly again. It was a beautiful service, and I'll be happy if I leave the area with that having been my final baptism in Nadi.

This week is transfer week, so either Elder Tui'one or I will be emailing from a different area next week. Transfers within the Hindi program were pretty easy to predict before, but President Higgins does things a different way so I have NO clue where we could go. Something tells me that precisely because I don't want to train again, President mayyy feel inspired to have me do exactly that.

Very much like 'Io, I want so badly to finish my mission stronger than I've ever been. I'm praying very sincerely for Heavenly Father to give me a companion that can help me to become better and who is willing to support me in my efforts to finish strong spiritually, mentally, and physically as I near the conclusion of my full-time service. Six months is a long time but not enough. I'm more desperate than ever to herd in as many of His sheep as I can while in this service. 

We're heading out now, I'm glad everything/everyone is going well! 
Continue to be safe, I love you all so much! Have a blessed week! 

Khyaal rakna, 
Elder Ishibashi 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

11-19-17 Happiness greater than I ever thought possible


Sorry the letter's so late today! For P-day today, we hit up a beach in Sigatoka called Natadola. I'm trying to get somebody else's camera for pictures, it was heaps of fun and sooo beautiful! 

This last week was pretty awesome too. We had zone conference on Thursday. One thing that stuck out to me particularly was a training given by President Higgins at the opening of zone conference. He talked about how he and Sister Higgins were invited by the Korovou zone leaders to accompany them on a P-day hike up Mount korobaba a few weeks ago.When they agreed, they expected the hike to have a nice pathway winding up the side of the mountain and to be able to enjoy the cool breeze in the Fijian heat of the day, looking over Korovou from the face of Korobaba. When they gathered at the foot of the trail, however, they found that the reality of the hike would be something different than they initially anticipated. It had rained the day before, so the dirt trail had turned into ankle-deep mud that seeped and settles between the tree roots, leaving a frame of roots about six-inches off the ground all along the way. In addition, the entire hike up was wayyy steep and through thick jungle. There came a point where the entire zone had abandoned President and Sister Higgins (the west zone would never do that, President) and they fell behind on the trail. They talked about giving up and heading back down the mountain and just waiting for the zone to come back down, but decided to go up just a little higher before deciding again. They went higher and higher bit by bit until they heard the voices of the missionaries not far off. When they reached the peak and were reunited with the zone, they were able to witness the "fruit of their labors". The view from the peak of mount Korobaba, as well as the company of the missionaries, was incredible and very much "well worth the strenuous effort". He related it to the mission. Reflecting back on how I viewed the mission before I came out, I honestly thought the biggest obstacle that lay ahead would be casting devils out or being attacked by something/someone. I thought I had the confidence to talk to anybody I wanted to comfortably by the time I left, and that I'd be able to get along with any companion the mission put me with. Every trail has an ingrown root you may trip over, but that's just how trails are. I knew it wouldn't be a walk in the park, and I knew there would be heavy rain. However, I didn't anticipate the lightning, the hail, and the flooding. The mission is hard. People won't always want to hear the message or care that you have feelings too. I've had companions that pressed buttons I never knew I had and tested my patience in ways I've never been tested before. I've only ever wanted to come home once, but on the more difficult days, I catch myself just wishing the time I do have left would fly by. President's training reiterated something very important and relevant to me, and I know that it's true. When I reach the end of my mission and look back at the last two years of strenuous effort, I'll be able to do so and say "It was all worth it." Over the last 17 months, I've wallowed in what must have been among the deepest depths I've descended to in my life, but on the other hand, I've experienced happiness greater than I ever thought possible, for myself and for other people. A lot can happen in six months, so I'm interested to see what the Lord has in store for me as I progress through the remainder of the mission. It'll be hard, but it'll be worth it. 

The rest of conference was also really edifying, a lot of good insights about how to strengthen our relationship with and gain a relationship of trust with the ward counsel. We haven't been able to meet with our ward mission leader for about three months, so I was a little salty as we went about the insights on how important the ward mission leader is in the work, but I got a humbling little smack in the maka when I found out on Sunday that he holds three other callings in the ward. We're working on strengthening our relationship with the members. 

Tomorrow, Charmaine (James's sister) will be interviewed by Elder Jackson before her baptism on Sunday! We've been able to meet with the family three times a week, which has been wayy helpful. Charmaine is definitely opening up to us, which is really nice, and she seemed to have heaps of fun with the kids at church yesterday. I'm stoked for her baptism! 

We were able to find a good handful of people last week that I look forward to following up with this week. It's Elder Tui'one's week 11, which means that he's the senior companion! I'm excited to have this breather and to see him in action as a senior. It'll be a good week!

In other news, I goofed again. I forgot about thanksgiving for the second year in a row, but thanks for the reminder, dad! Man, I'll be missing yous too, but that's a cool opportunity for Nina to be able to fly over to Utah! Is that the youngest any of us have traveled to the mainland? Please give my love to Uncle Juney, I didn't even know if Uncle Dan was sick or anything. I only veeery very vaguely remember meeting Uncle Juney once, but it's so nice that he has that desire for all the siblings to be reunited for the first time in how-many years. You guys have safe travels and have a good time in Utah! Just a side note, I've been receiving some light promptings (that I've lowkey been trying to ignore) that I need to settle in Utah. Eat lots of Chick-fil-a and Krispy Kremes for me while yous are there, those are two very particular things from Utah that I miss a lot.

I'm SO happy to hear about the boys' passion for paddling and their progression! I'm so stoked to see my YAKKED little brothers. I'm seriously just trying to come home buff so I can blend in with the rest of my brothers for the first time ever. I've gained a lot of weight over the last few weeks due to kind members and stress-ice cream. We also found out that they recently made a rule where missionaries can't work out at the gym in the morning anymore, so we haven't been going. Know I'll definitely be hitting those push-ups and cinder-block dumbbells hard for the next six months, though. WAY sick that you're a stroker, though, Lehia! I didn't have the stamina for that, it takes a lot to stroke the crew, and how sick that you're in the same wa'a as Hoku! La'i, it's funny how something you love can motivate you to do something you're a little less-than excited about. Honestly, paddling is the only thing that motivated me to get good grades in school. Here's the problem, though: I did terrible in school, so I'm REALLY scared how my schooling is gonna go from here on out haha. Do well in school so you can be confident that you'll find a good place in life after your mission. What seat are you, btw?
I do highly recommend Judo as a follow-up sport for the season, though. SOO much fun and a really good sport to learn discipline and respect for your opponents. 

Thanks for all the pictures of the babies, glad everything is going well back home! I don't have much time left and I have heaps of emails I need to respond to, so I'll leave off here. I love you guys so much, have an incredible, blessed and SAFE week! 
Ham aaplogke bahut pyaar karta hei!

Khyaal rakna,
Elder Ishibashi 

-Natadola P-day!


-Nadroga district 

-team Fa'asamoa (feat. two Tongans)

-Lautoka Zone Conference

-Matthew, the sisters' investigator, got baptized yesterday!

Sunday, November 12, 2017


Kaise hei parivaar!

First things first, HAPPY BIRTHDAY NINA!! MAN It's actually really crazy to me thinking that it's been a year since you turned 8 and was baptized. Looking back, SO much has happened since I've been away... but isa, I hope you have an AWESOME day, Penina! I love and miss you so much, malama pono!

Dad, thank you for that story about Kaimi, that's actually sooo cool. I feel like that's missionary work at its finest, haha. Those have got to be the three luckiest young men in the Philippines. He payed them a small fee to hear and be involved in the gospel, and look at the blessings that came with that how-many pesos. Three lives were changed in one day, and as a result, countless more have been saved for eternity. This work is God's work, and I love it with every fiber of my being. 

This last week was a good one! Elder Tui'one and I were sick for the greater part of the beginning of the week, so we weren't able to get as much work done as we would've wanted. On Wednesday, we got a call from the Nawaka elders (the airport elders, who are responsible for transportation of packages and missionaries between Nadi, Suva, and overseas) saying they needed us to be with them for part of the day. There needs to be an odd number of elders and sisters in a car, and the Nawaka elders were told by the mission office to collect two sisters going home early for medical reasons from the airport, so we needed to be present. When we got to the airport, I was surprised and saddened to see Sister Pea and Sister Taetae. Sister pea was supposed to go home with my outtake, but she contracted a virus that required that she go home to recover. Being with them on their last day in Fiji and their seeing bittersweet attitudes, I couldn't help but get a liiiittle trunky haha. Don't worry, I've since recovered, but it was sad to see them off before we head into the appointments we had set for the day. After a few good lessons, we head into Sigatoka to blitz it with the elders. I was able to meet with and teach one of their recent investigating families, an Indian family. It was nice for them because the Ajii (grandma) doesn't speak a word of English, so I was able to explain to her what the elders are teaching her grandchildren, and it was good practice for me. Sigatoka is SOOO beautiful, it almost made me upset. There are heaps of Indians there as well, so I might kerekere President Higgins to consider opening a Hindi area there (and let me die opening it). When Elder Jackson gets to the internet cafe, I'll send you pictures. Saturday was busy. we were able to find and teach heaps of people! Unfortauntely, we weren't able to meet with Alisha at all, so we may have to postpone her baptism, which sucks because I'm most likely leaving in two weeks and I'd miss it. However, one of our YSA referred us to his 9 year old sister who hasn't been baptized yet. She's waayy keen and attended church regularly when the family lived in Suva, but since they moved to Nadi, the parents' work schedules don't allow them to go to church. The new bus system also makes transportation a lot more difficult for the family so the kids stay home with the grandma while James goes to church. She's set to be baptized on November 26th, all we really have to do with her is review the lessons and assure that she comes to church, which will be easy. She's really quiet and shy right now, but that's how all kids start. The point comes where they get so comfortable with the missionaries that they get annoying. I'm excited for that haha. 

As I approach the last quarter of my mission and likely my last area, I haven't been able to help but think a lot about home. A part of me wants the time to fly, but another screams that these last 18 months have gone by too ridiculously fast. I've started a little book, for when times get rough and I get a little trunky, called WHY. In it, I'm writing all the significant events that happened throughout my mission preparation and my mission that have shaped who I am today and have made me realize why I'm out on a mission. As I've gone about this process, I've become so appreciative of my God-given trials and how they shape us into the men and women God needs us to be. 

We're looking at another great week ahead! 

We'll be heading out now, glad everything is all well at home! Have an incredible and blessed week, I love yous so much!

Khyaal rakna, 
Elder Ishibashi 

BTW I heard Mali got her mission call!
Where's she going??

-When you have heaps of solid return appointments set for the coming week 

-When every single one falls through

-Up on the hills

-Sigatoka made me upset 

Sunday, November 5, 2017

11-5-17 the Plan of Salvation

Kaise hei hamaar julum parivaar! 

Short on time again today, so I'll be brief! 

It was a really good last week. On Tuesday we blitzed the area with Sigatoka again and found heaps of people! It was a humbling day because I went with Elder Dempsey while Elder Tui'one went with Elder Jackson. We had been rejected by about seven houses when we decided to stop at a store for an escape from the sun and a drink. Elder Dempsey and I were pretty discouraged when we got a call from the other elders that they were ready to meet up. When they heard what happened to us, and when we heard that they'd just gotten 7 new investigators in the last hour, Elder Jackson decided to take me for one more OYM before we moved onto a different area. We were able to get into a house and have an awesome lesson with a really sweet family. That, to me, was a lesson of perseverance; you never know what the next house will hold, despite a day full of rejections. That last lesson was a really nice refresher and motivator, we were able to move onto the next area with a new drive and found more people. 

On Friday night, we got a pretty late call from our bishop's second counselor. Though obviously a bit shaken over the phone and in need of assistance, I was not at all expecting to hear what he needed us to do. He and his wife had just delivered their still-born baby, and he needed help digging the grave the next morning for the service in the afternoon. For such a request, he actually seemed really strong. He seemed more uncomfortably just asking us for the assistance, but of course we were more than willing to help. I know it happens often, but I can't imagine the emotional scarring that would have on someone; especially the mother. When we met with Brother Singh at the grave site the next morning, as always, he was smiling and ready to tend to OUR needs as we dug. It was hard, digging such a small grave, and especially watching them pull the tiny casket out of the back of the van. Both he and his wife looked like they were holding up really well at the burial service. Though a bit broken, it spoke huge volumes to me how strong their testimony of the Plan of Salvation is. There was another service that night at their home, and I was asked to share a bit about the Plan of Salvation. I talked about eternal families and was able to share my testimony of the God's great plan for us in Hindi to non-member family members who were present. It was an excellent opportunity to teach, and afterwards, Brother Singh gave some excellent closing remarks. He talked about how blessed he was to know that his son was able to pass onto the next life without any temptation and imperfection, and how blessed we are as saints to know without doubt that he is in the highest degree of glory with our father in heaven. He went on to say that he and Sister Singh decided that their new solemn responsibility was to keep themselves faithful and worthy to reach the same degree of glory as their son that they might achieve eternity with him. To most people, death is probably one of the hardest things anybody can go through. It's incredible how blessed we as saints are to know God's plan for us, and that death is, by no means whatsoever, the end of family. Throughout my mission, I've seen people I've come close to pass on, I've been able to dress a body, and dig/ be a part of the dedication of a grave. As I prayed about all these things, I received a bit of a prompting that the Lord is preparing me to do a lot of work for those who have passed on. 

Okay everybody else is out of time, so I'll close here. I love this gospel so much and I love you all sooo much! Glad everything back home is going well, I love yous! Have a great and blessed week! 

Khyaal rakna, 
Elder Ishibashi 

10-29-17 Keep being that light and example of Christ's love

Kaise hei hamaar julum pariwaar!

This last week was awesome! Able to meet with a lot of people we met last week and find heaps as well. I'm guilty of a pretty bad habit missionaries tend to get into over the last few weeks: When they have a few solid baptisms coming up, they tend to slack a bit and put an excessive amount of focus on those baptismal candidates rather than finding new investigators. Though we were able to find a good handful of people, we could have done better, and none of them really progressed so we were left after the baptism with a shallow teaching pool. Over the last week, we've been able to find a lot people with very good potential, I'd say. We're looking at another really good week ahead!

The internet just went out for about an hour and we have some zone Christmas fireside practice after qito today so we have to be there early so we can have as much qito time as possible. 

Dad, I'm already having second thoughts about being a pilot to be honest haha. Though my vision is a bit clearer as to what the future may hold for me, I'm open to what the Lord is ready to prepare me for. I can't wait to actually be able to speak Hindi in front of yous! Where is Sister Dalton right now? If possible, I'd looove for her to be home when I return! I want to maintain my Hindi until I'm able to get to school or something, where it'll be easier. I'm also eager to try my Kiribati on Aunty Mere Shute or something, do we have any Kiribati in our ward??

That sounds exciting, giving a religious message to military veterans! I mean, it sounds exciting to me. I honestly don't reckon I'd have been near excited for something like that before the mission haha BUT every opportunity to share the word of God and lift our brothers and sisters is an opportunity to offer and receive blessings. It may be uncomfortable, and missionary work often is, but those veterans probably need a pick-me-up so dearly. I know that yous will touch the hearts of a lot of people there, they will appreciate your time and effort SO much, and yous will receive great blessings for your ministering to the needing. 

I'm so glad everything is going well back home, MAN I can't wait to see yous all on Christmas in two months! I love that dress, Nina! And Pierce is looking happy, healthy, and strong.

Sorry this one actually was way short, but I love you all so much! When I was in Nasinu, I was reading through the ensign and really liked the closing line of one of the addresses. I cut it out and taped it to the back of my Hindi badge. It reads "We are surrounded by strangers with wounded hearts who need a kind word of encouragement and who need to know what we as Latter-day Saints know." It's so true, keep being that light and example of Christ's love to everybody around yous. Missionary work extends far beyond  knocking on doors and ministering on the street. Stated very simply by King Benjamin, when you are in the service of your fellow beings, you are in the service of your God. From cutting grass to giving a needing man your extra burger; assuring/reminding veterans of war that there is a God who loves them, is aware of their physical/mental/social/familiar/spiritual struggles, and is ALWAYS there for them as they allow him to help. 

I love you all so much, have a blessed week! Aaplogke bahut pyaar karta hei! 
Khyaal rakna,

Elder Ishibashi 

Sunday, October 22, 2017

10-22-17 Kaise hei everyone!

Kaise hei everyone! 

MAN I'm so full of joy today. For one, today is Elder Tui'one's birthday, so we're looking at a good day with the zone. Also, I was able to baptize the first people I ever found AND taught to the point of baptism yesterday! That was wayyy exciting for me, I'll talk more about it later.

This last week was transfer week, as I shared last week(?), and this last transfer was THE craziest, unpredictable transfer I've ever seen in my mission. A LOT of things happened that have never been seen in the mission before, especially in the Hindi program! 

For the first time in the mission, THREE Hindi elders were welcomed into the program from the same intake (at the same time). One Hindi elder finished (I was able to see Elder Hariprasad off at the airport, that was nice), one went Zone Leader, and the last got his dying wish and was transferred to Rabi where he'll be finishing his mission. THAT made me really happy, because allegedly, this elder had a difficult time in the Hindi program his entire mission. He finally "made it out", and he gets to finish his mission in an area where he can teach in his mother tongue, Kiribati (Rabians speak Kiribati, which is cool because any elder assigned to serve there gets assigned to learn and speak it). Also, all three new Hindis were more than okay with their new assignment! Aside from all that, for the first time ever, a Hindi went senior companion STRAIGHT OUT of training! Elder Morgan received Elder Tavake, his own MTC companion, in Labasa to be his follow-up trainer. That means: he has a great drive, and his Hindi must be more than good enough to teach. Really happy for him as well! Throughout the rest of the mission there are a lot of intake-vatas together and new areas opened. Excited to meet the trainees in the zone at qito today! 

We spent a lot of time with the YSA this week, received heaps of calls for counsel and assistance in reactivating inactive / teaching non-member family members. It's a great blessing because we're meeting a lot of new people and getting heaps of referrals! We're looking forward to teaching a lot of people over the next week with the help of the YSA. 

Our YSA is awesome, there was a YSA activity after church last week. During church, Aggie never leaves Nasau's side to go to class or anything. She doesn't go anywhere or talk to anyone without Nasau, but the STLs were able to pry her away last week and take her to class. After church, Aggie was invited to the activity and decided to go. We got a call on Monday from Nasau saying how appreciative she was of the sisters and the YSA for making Aggie feel so welcome and for the awesome time she had. When we went over for their baptismal interviews on Tuesday, Nasau shared with us how overwhelmed she was to see Aggie so happy, and why. Nasau and Aggie are sisters by the same mother. When their mother passed away a few years ago, Aggie shut herself out and didn't associate with anybody of her age group. When Nasau saw what good a time Aggie had with friends, she wanted to cry and said she wished their mom was alive to see it. Since then, I've seen a huge change in Aggie. She's more willing to take part in the lessons and talks and smiles more. I think I've said it before, but there really is nothing like watching people's lives change as you teach them the restored gospel, and listening to them testify of its blessings as they live its teachings. Their baptism on Saturday was absolutely beautiful, and I have no doubt in my mind whatsoever that Nasau and her family will remain strong in the gospel for a very, very long time. I had the privilege of baptizing Nasau and Tusi, and Elder Tui'one was able to perform his first baptisms in the mission with Aggie and Vuki. They kind of gave us a scare when they weren't at church when church started, but they made it JUST in time to be confirmed and receive the Holy Ghost. We'll be seeing them again on Wednesday, way excited to follow-up on their baptism! 

Glad everything is going well back home! My love to each and every single one of yous, take care and work hard in everything yous are doing! One thing I've gained an unbreakable testimony of: Diligence spawns blessings, and hard work pays off in the end; no matter what.

It just occurred to me that Mother's Day next year is on May 13th, which is a week before my return. That'll be an interesting call haha, but until then, I CAN'T WAIT to see you all in December! Hopefully I'll be in an area with good connection, I feel really strongly that I'll finish my mission in the North, on Vanualevu. We'll see. Anyways, I have a few more emails I need to respond to before we head out to Elder Tui'one's birthday lunch. He LOVES McDonalds, he was overjoyed when he found out there was a McDonalds in our area. When he was being bussed through Utah on their way to Temple Square (I'm still salty I didn't get to go), rather than gawking at all the big buildings and structures, his eye was on the McDonalds on every corner. So, we're getting him McDonalds haha.
I love you all SO much, have an incredible and blessed week! 
Khyaal rakna! 

Elder Ishibashi 

OH please let grandma know I received her letter this last week, and that I love her! 
I don't think I received an update on Ketter and Kaimi's progress in the police academy, how's that going?

-We hit up the gym in the mornings, Elder Tui'one is very supportive of my six-months-to-sexy goal.

-Happy Diwali!


-Waiting for the gym to open this morning (it didn't)

Monday, October 16, 2017


Keeping this one short as well because we had a late start to the day, and today is Elder Jackson's birthday so we're going out to lunch before qito. 

The last week was awesome! A really bittersweet one, I'll say. Basically a lot of good things happened, especially over the last few days, and one really bad thing. 

We just did a lot of finding over the week and found a nice handful of people I reckon have good potential. 
Every Wednesday night we have dinner with the Stake President. President Kaumatotoya's son, Tukai, is a really close friend and a pilot student. He always talks about the flight tests and exams they take and how flying is so fun and this and that. I always thought Uncle Stan's job was way sick growing up, but I never thought of actually pursuing a career in aviation until I talked to Tukai about it and listened to him share his passion of it. It honestly hit me like a wall Wednesday night, and I'm not sure exactly what it was, but I think the spirit was telling me I needed to be a pilot. I've been absolutely lost since I graduated high school as to what I want to pursue in my life, except for those little "maybes" like a teacher or a therapist or a graphic designer or something. My vision has never been clearer than it is now, and I feel oddly strongly that the spirit confirmed that that's what I need to do. It's like a light came on in my head that I didn't know was there but it's so bright and helpful. There are several particular reasons why this hit me so hard I think. One, according to Tukai, the need for pilots in America will spike next year, so it'll be a liiittle easier than it initially would have been. And look at that, I come home to America next year! Where pilots will be needed! 

Another reason is that apparently, pilots are some of the highest payed people in any given nation. If I can pull this off, the airlines will pay for my house and I'll be able to support for my family nicely. Also, mom finally gets those flight benefits she always wanted! All this in addition to the fact that I and my family gets to travel for way as cheap. Flying also seems like sooo much fun, and I hear it's way easy. Of all the reasons, however, one stuck out to me particularly. I JUST looked up what I was about to say and I'm significantly less excited about it now, but here's what I found out anyway: To back track a bit, a thought as come into my head recently. I found out recently that I am the 2nd shortest Elder in the entire Fiji, Suva Mission, second only to Elder Albert (whom I served with in Suva). Don't get me wrong, I don't mean this in a hexing way at all, but the thought came into my head: Why did God make me short? Again, I'm absolutely positive that God did make me short for a reason and it can't be a bad reason, so I'm trying to figure out how being my height can/will benefit me as I pursue a career. This was my initial discovery: Short people make the best pilots because of the limited cockpit space and they tend to handle G-maneuvers better. However I just found out that short people make the best FIGHTER pilots because of the limited cockpit space and they tend to handle G-maneuvers better; plus they fill the cabin less and thus creates a lesser chance of a round from an enemy anti-aircraft weapon (or an enemy aircraft) actually hitting you. I'm not down to be a fighter pilot, but I don't think it's impossible for me to be a commercial pilot because of my height. It's definitely a course that requires a lot of money and attention, so on the downside of pursuing a career at the airlines: my social life goes down the drain as well as my need to attend BYU as they don't offer aviation courses, so I'll have to school at an aviation academy near Hickam Field. ANYWAYS this is the highest possibility for me right now, and I'm really excited! 

Nasau and her family came to church yesterday and are scheduled to be baptized on Saturday, WAY excited! Aggie, Nasau's sister, has always been a bit more shy and never really says anything during the lessons, but apparently she attended a YSA activity yesterday where she opened up to the members and questions about the gospel were answered for her. These will be the first people I found AND baptized in my mission, and I can't express how excited I am to be able to assist them into the waters of salvation on Saturday!

Those were my highlights for the week, looking at another great one! I might as well share the one really bad thing that happened before I go into the awesome things happening back home: my bag is broken right now, like the top has a gaping hole in it, and I think my camera fell out of it when my bag fell off the seat because the bus rammed a curb. Mom, I'm sooooo sorry. I am grateful that I was able to send yous the nicest pictures on that camera, but the camera really isn't lolo-proof. One of the YSA in the ward offered to give me his camera from his mission as he has a phone now and thus no use for a normal camera. My old SD works and I still have heaps of space on it, so I should be able to send pictures next week just maybe lower quality (depending on his camera). Still, sorry! 


It's actually pretty funny because I was in church yesterday when I received a call from an unfamiliar number. When I answered, it was a member from my last ward, Suva 3rd, saying "Congratulations, bro!" When I expressed my confusion, he explained that my brother's wife had their baby two hours previous. So I found out about Pierce yesterday haha and was WAYYY excited to see his pictures and find out his name! THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE PICTURES, HE LOOKS SO SKUXX!! Au lomani kemudrau sara valevu, kei au sa misstaki kemudou kece saraga! Au sega ni wawa rawa meu raici na luvemudrau vou ka totoka, o koya sa rairai vinaka saraga! Solia na noqu loloma vei na matavuvale, au na soti kemudou ena siga voleka! Loloma yani vei na tuakaqu wananavu, vinaka sara valevu na nomuni example vinaka, SOTA TALE! OI au na vosa vei kemudou i rua na vula, SA au sega ni wawa rawa meu raici kemudou kece taleiga!

Also, HAPPY BIRTHDAY 'IO!!! Have a wayyy as sick one, It's soooo crazy to me that I'll be able to hear your voice for the first time in almost two years in two months. Man, you don't even know how much I miss you. I can't wait to see you again, but anyways HAVE AN AWESOME BIRTHDAY, MAHAL NA MAHAL KITA KUYA, INGAT KAYO!

Glad everything else is going well back home, I love you all so much! Have an incredible and blessed week, ham aaplogke BAHUT pyaar karta hei! Khali jano ki ham abhi bahut kushii lage, iis kam nadi me julum chale. Hamaar sathii julum hei, iis kam bahut mushkil hei lekin uu hamme madat kare rojrojke saabchiij ki sange. Firse bahut dhanyavaad iis saabchiij aaplog hamar liye kare, ham abhi dhir ashivaad dekta hei aapan kam me. Ham aaplogke pyaar karta aur se ham sakta bole, khyaal rakna!!

Elder Ishibashi 

Monday, October 9, 2017

10-8-17 We're so quick to judge

Kaise hei, pairwaar!!

I'll keep the letter really short because I got HEAPS of emails last week that I have to respond to and I've got heaps of pictures to send from the last week. 

The last week was a pretty "red" (stressful) week for me, but everything is situated now haha. It was a really busy week because the zone leaders put me in charge of designing, ordering, and collecting the money for zone shirts because the embroidery place is in our area. The process was really hectic and time consuming, and the reason we weren't able to find many new people to teach. Today they decided it's too late in the transfer for the shirts to be done in time, so the shirts won't happen. Fortunately, we didn't pay the place yet so the money collected was distributed back to its owners. Despite not having been able to find heaps of people, we were able to have some awesome visits with those progressing. 

On Saturday we watched the first and second sessions of the Saturday segment of conference, and on Sunday, the first and second sessions of the Sunday segment. Nasau and her family came to the Sunday session and loved it! They seem to already have a strong testimony of the restored gospel, and I can't wait to be able to assist them into the waters of baptism soon! 

I left my notebook home again but to point out several things that really stuck out to me during conference: 

I really like Jeffery R. Holland's address about how we've been commanded to be perfect, as the savior was. I can't remember much of it right now, but truly nobody is perfect. I also really liked what he said about helping those who are also searching for the right path. It reminded me of the story of President Aniu, how he was spotted by the bishop one Sunday morning in the back of the chapel with dreads, a beard, and his motorcycle jacket. Easy as it would be to judge him based off his appearance, and difficult as it would be to approach him for the same reason, he was ultimately fellowshipped and called as a (remarkable) stake president. We're so quick to judge, but when we begin to put on our "spiritual glasses", we begin to see that we, like them, are imperfect; but more importantly, that they're trying. Something that struck me personally when I heard that is this impression: They, in their dire situation in life, are trying to follow Christ. They're exercising faith in Christ by attending church for the first time , either ever or in years. What am I doing? How am I trying? We begin to see those people not even as people trying to strengthen their spirituality and relationship with Christ, but as our brothers and sisters longing for the long-missed or unknown tender love of our savior and father in heaven. Help those who are trying, and we will receive help. 

Briefly, I also really liked Elder Ronald A. Rasband's address about divine design. There truly are no coincidences, everything and everyone who falls into our lives come in for a reason.
Conference was especially edifying to me, I REALLY enjoyed it! A lot I can apply personally. 

OKAY I'll close now. 

Mom, I feel so blessed knowing that you have a job that you love with awesome co-workers you enjoy! Elder Jackson was born and raised in Utah, but he's actually half Indian! Quick and funny story about Elder Jackson: Since I visa-waited, we were scheduled to meet up with the Fiji group at LAX. Elder Jackson is from the intake after me, so I met him at LAX on our way to Fiji. When we arrived in Fiji, we were told that ONE of us was would be going into the Hindi program. Everybody just KNEW that it was him, including him. I could have put money on it being Elder Jackson. However, the Lord had different plans. 

As for Elder Tui'one, he received his card and extra support from his family via one of President Tui'one's counselors who came to Fiji. What a blessing! But the last week was also hectic to the extra ,money did help a lot. We received a budgeting insight by one of the senior couples here in district meeting on Tuesday and I feel a lot more confident that I will be rich and successful in life.
Dad, congratulations on/I'm sorry about (???) your release! It must be really tough but I can't wait to be able to sit with the whole family when I get home! Try grow out your goatee again, that'd be sick. I know without a doubt that the ward was SO blessed and is SO grateful to have had such a faithful and diligent bishop over the ward for the last 5 years. Also, congratulations on/I'm sorry about (jokes haha???) your new calling, Uncle Rob! Give them my love!

Thank you so much for the pictures U'i, I love your fat, fat little Talia! And your skuxx as Jeremias and beauty-queen Fia!

KAY I'm out, I love you all so much! Have an incredible and blessed week! 

Khyaal rakna! 

Elder Ishibashi 

-Last P-day w/ Elder Hunkin! So happy to be serving around him, first time since we got here!

-Tusi, Esther, Nasau,Sana, and Vuki

Today, we went to the sand dunes in Sigatoka! HEAPS of fun! 
-The hike up

-Beach behind the dunes

-Elder Ishibashi, Elder Aisa, Elder Hunkin (Jersey and hat courtesy of Elder Jackson. I've determined I really like wearing yellow)

-"stingy sea balloon"

Monday, October 2, 2017

10-1-17 We are all the Lord's seles

Kaise hei, hamaar julum parivaar!

The all-day P-day activity was postponed to next week. I'll try to keep this one a little shorter so I have time to send all the photos I've been slacking on sending over the last few weeks. Sorry, small kine ma'a already for no send pictures haha. But yeah, this last week was good! 

We had the Sigatoka Elders in our area on Tuesday, which was a HUGE help. When you have two pairs of missionaries sweeping through an area at once, it's called a blitz. We blitzed the back-roads of a "gray" part of our area on Tuesday and were able to find HEAPS of people! We look forward to following up with them all tomorrow.

We visit Nasau them every Wednesday and Saturday. On Wednesday we had an awesome lesson on tithing and fast offering. They understood and accepted everything, saying it all made perfect sense. They like the whole unpaid-ministry thing. On Saturday, we had a bit more of a difficult visit. Teaching the Law of Chastity is always way awkward, especially when the audience is between the ages of 7 and 36. Something I did notice about teaching that particular commandment though, over the course of my mission, is that you eventually stop caring about trying to sugar coat important things. The Law of Chastity is SO important, so there needs to be a crystal clear understanding of what it entails and what blessings come with obeying it. In the end, we were able to explain everything clearly and boldly for all the age groups to understand. They really liked it and committed to living it! 

Unfortunately, and for a reason we haven't been able to address yet, Nasau and her family weren't in church yesterday. We'll be reiterating CPR (Church, Pray, Read) on Wednesday. Remember when I told yous about the family members Nasau invited to our first sit-down with them? We've been teaching them with Nasau, and they all agreed to be baptized with Nasau them on October 21st. GOLDEN family, SO excited to work with them! 

Set I'm running out of time, those were some highlights from the week! Before I close to post pictures I'll just share an insight from Elder Jackson (our district leader) from district meeting:
We're often told that we're to be instruments in the Lord's hand that we might be able to carry out his work effectively. Elder Jackson likened that analogy to a sele. We are all the Lord's seles, but we can't be dull seles, otherwise we won't be as productive as we could be. The sharpening process is a timely and often difficult one. One thing I was never ever a fan of when working with a sele was whacking through some thick bush and accidentally wrecking my blade on an unseen tangle of wire or metal bar sticking out of the ground. Things that like will happen every day, but we need to know how to A. be able to bounce back quickly  and B. Use those experiences as sharpening tools. Often times in the work we're kind of just grinding by, just frustratingly whacking at the ground; using our tools but not being productive with it. In which case, we need to change our "angle", or perspective. Have the idea of "Okay, this didn't go as planned/this is terrible, how will this benefit me?" As we keep in mind the fact that every trial is a growing opportunity, it'll be easier to adopt and use those experiences for our betterment; and as we use those experiences as sharpening tools, the work of the Lord will increase as will the ease by which we get it done. 

Thank yous SO MUCH for the extra support! It really did help significantly, Elder Tui'one is beyond grateful. 

You don't even know how hyped I am hearing about all the Chuukese members coming out of the shadows! I never even heard of Chuuk until I came here and met a sister missionary from Chuuk. She finished almost a year ago, and she was wayy funny, so I'm way excited to meet these Chuuk members! Being the teacher for the Hindi Sunday school class in our ward, I've been able to see firsthand how much a blessing it is for people to hear the gospel in their own tongue. Like I said, these things are all so important, and there needs to be as clear an understanding of the doctrine as possible in order for us to live it to the best of our ability. Keep finding those Chuukese and bringing them in, what an incredible blessing it is for our ward to be able to pioneer something like that! I see a great future for the LDS Chuukese community in Hawaii because of the hard work of our members. Tell them I said u tongeok! 

Also give my aloha and thanks to Elder Dushku and Elder Roberts for their great work! Number one in the Honolulu, Hawaii Mission! WOW!

I'm way excited for conference this weekend, I heard it's really good! 
I died seeing your pictures dad, I just see 'Io aye haha! They capture your personality as a young missionary so perfectly, and it looks like you killed the work and just had heaps of fun doing it. That's what I aspire for! 

Thank you so much for the pictures U'i! MAN Talia is getting huge! And Fia has so much teeth! I watched my letter opening earlier and almost cried watching Jeremias cover the camera and hearing his squeaky little baby voice. 

I miss yous all so much, OKAY I'll send the pictures now!
I love yous so much, have an incredible and blessed week!
Khyaal rakna,

Elder Ishibashi 

-Last district meeting with the "Nadisciples"

-Scraping coconuts for the otai (what they drink in heaven)

-Ratu Ishibashi, Ratu Jackson ka Ratu Kioa vata kei na otai maleka sara

-Oh, Fiji

- "Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men."

- "Don't be too critical of the barrier; it's the only thing keeping you from being devoured." 

-Spent the less-productive later hours of the day at a nearby beach

-No other mission...

-O Nadi Ko

-Sugar mill trains run on Saturdays

-Found these kids swimming in a river, this guy need a push through and the kids were way excited to help

-I wanna look back at my mission with the pride these boys have of the great service they just rendered

-Needed a quick feet-dip from the walking