December 28, 2009

LETTER #7 - SCHWARZENBERG/ANNABERG-BUCHHOLZ

Helllooo,
 
so because of new years this week our monday normal pday gets messed up. We are just supposed to do emails this week 
then get the groceries we need then get back to work. So I would have sent a regular email today but when we went to 
go do emails this morning, the place was closed. So we just went to work now were at schwester Zimmermanns doing our 
quick weekly email to President Pimentel and I thought I should let you know why there is not really an email this 
week. So. I will write next monday! It was fun talking to everyone, although elder killpack and I just found out we 
definitely broke the rule on how long your supposed to talk ha. It was really good talking to everyone though. Hope 
everybody has a good week, be safe over new years! love you all,
 
Elder Puriri

December 26, 2009

WE TALKED TO HIM

Christmas Day - 9:00am.  Isaac called!  SOOOO EXCITED!  We planned the whole morning around his phone call.  We love the technology of Skype.  Isaac called on my computer and Karamea called Rakai in New Zealand on her computer.  Then they talked to each other computer to computer and we all engaged in conversation.  It was 5:00am for Rakai and 5:00pm for Isaac.  We talked for exactly 2 hours 12 minutes and 19 seconds.  I am still feeling so elated - JOY is the best word I can think of. It was awesome!  We are grateful to Sister Zimmerman for allowing Elder Isaac to use the computer in her home.  We found out that Isaac's companion, Elder Killpack is from Sandy.  His family is actually in Grandpa and Grandma's stake and live close to my parents.  We will have to go visit them next time we are in Salt Lake.

Isaac is happy to be in Schwarzenberg for Christmas.  The area is in the mountains.  He says it feels like a scene right out of Narnia.  He says there are lights in the windows and the markets are filled with Christmas fun.  It is the envied area to be during the holidays.  He has been busy with holiday activity and P-Days are few and far between.  Which means letters and emails will be difficult.  I suppose this 2 hour conversation will have to keep us until we hear from him again.   

December 21, 2009

LETTER #6 - SCHWARZENBERG/ANNABERG-BUCHHOLZ

Family!!
 
Hamilton, happy birthday!! yea its late but obviously there isnothing I can do about that ha. Hi everyone! I'm in 
Germany now, and so excited. I got here tuesday afternoon at 12 so...tuesday morning 4am utah's time. So pretty much 
a 24 travel time since we left the mtc at 430am monday morning. Leaving the mtc was really weird. I made lot of really 
good friends there and it was harder to say bye then I thought it would be. That was only after 3 weeks or so, I can't 
imagine how its going to be after 23 months in germany. Good thing I don't have to do that for a really long time. 
 
Getting here was cool, the 2 other elders and 1 sister I traveled with were so in awe seeing germany, driving the the 
presidents house, and hearing german all around you instead of english. It was weird for me because...it wasn't new or 
weird being here. I didn't get that feeling you think you'd get arriving at your mission in another country. It was 
more like cool I'm back in germany, time to work. I guess thats lucky though. New missionaries here are called Goldens 
not greenies, and I didn't really go through that golden phase as they called it. Its really nice already being able 
to speak german. I remember how it was getting to hannover my little bit and how depressing it was not understanding 
or being able to speak. On a mission it would be way worse! So yea, I'm glad the lords blessed me in the ways he has to 
prepare me for my mission. 
 
My first night here we went to the Brandenburg gate and did some finding (talk to everyone about the church, try to 
get names; numbers, addresses and appointments). It was so weird!!! Our trainers were not there yet so we were just 
the presidents assistance and 2 sisters serving in that area. I went with Elder Loynes from England to find. It was 
crazy he would just walk up to people and go 'I know that god lives today and that his church is on the earth again. He 
calls prophets and they lead and guide us' or 'I know god loves you and that he wants to you to be happy in this life' 
and lots of other ways he did it. I was thinking you cant just walk up to people and blast them with all this stuff! 
Thats what we did though, and it was fun. We got everything from really interested people taking everything we said to 
really good, to people like thanks but no thanks, to get out of here but in different terms ha. It was funny seeing all 
the peoples different reactions. I was shocked by some of the things people would say to us ha but then shocked that 
people actaully do stop and really want to hear what you have to say. I was real nervous to go finding at first and 
still am a little bit but thats one of the biggest parts of this mission apparently. The mission presidents keeps 
saying 'we find, we teach, we baptize, we keep.' Everyday when you don't have something going on, we go finding! I'm 
starting to like it a lot. 
 
We got our companions on wednesday night at the presidents house. My companion is Elder Killpack from sandy, ut. He's 
from st. louis, missiouri mostly but lived in sandy the last couple years before his mission. He's way cool though. He 
has no fear when we go finding and is comfortable talking to everyone. His german is really good and he is a way good 
teacher, I'm learning tons from him. He has been out about 16 months now I think. I finally got to look at the blog 
mom is keeping which is way cool. In that picture with all us missionaries in Leipzig though, he is like the 3rd elder 
to my right I think. The one with the red hair. We got along really well and I'm excited to serve with him. Our area 
is the Schwarzenberg/Annaberg-Buchholz area. Its the most southern part of the mission I think, up in the mountains and 
right next to the czech border. Its beautiful here though, lots of little towns down in valleys, a few casltes, old 
catholic churches, pine trees everywhere, and lots of snow to top it all off. Its the best place to be over christmas, 
at least thats what everyones been telling me. I can see why too, the christmas atmosphere is really big and the 
christmas markets here and the best in the mission. Although its also the coldest place in the mission. The last two 
days it was -18 C...i'm not sure what that is converted but I thought I was going to die. I got a really good 
companion and a sweet area! The people here are really cool too, and the wards are awesome. This used to just be the 
Schwarzenberg area but the missionaries in Annaberg-Buchholz  got moved to a different area so now we have both cities. 
So we do have a car luckily. Two cities, to wards, twice the people. So we are pretty busy trying to do stuff in both 
cities. 
 
My first day here was last thursday. We were in Annaberg and members had written their testimonies in copies of the 
book of mormon, then we wrapped them up in wrapping paper, went to the christmas market and handed them out. We gave 
out 10 copies in about 30 minutes. It was so fun. We'd just tell people we wanted to give them a present since it was 
christmas time. Then we'd tell them a little bit about it and most would take it! We had 2 appointments right after 
that so we got the 2 memebers that came with us and split and went and taught. So my first lesson wasn't even with my 
companion ha. I had never taught in german before and was way nervous. It was really cool though, I could understand 
almost everything and I taught as much as I could. Then last night Elder Killpack and I were back in Annaberg to watch 
the rebroadcast of the First Presidency christmas message but we had some time before. So we got the last 2 wrapped 
books of mormon and went to hand them out. I said a quick prayer while getting out of the car hoping that we would be 
guided to 2 people that would need it most right now and that they would accept it. Then I caught up with elder 
killpack and we started down the street. We walked past a few people which was weird because usually killpack talks to 
everyone but then this girl came and he talked to her and she was way excited and took it. Then a girl came walking 
right after and I talked to her about it real quick and gave her the book. We gave out those books in like 20 seconds 
it was crazy. ELder Killpack said he had never seen anything like it. 
 
Everything is just going really good. I'm picking up the german again. Except here in the Erzgiberge they speak crazy 
german. Its a total different dialect and so hard to understand! They mumble and mix everything and pronouce things 
way different. I have to like keep myself from laughing when we talk to some people because it sounds so funny. The 
people here and nice and the members feed us lots which is always good. Elder Killpack and I were reading the 
christmas ensign this morning during study. We read Elder Eyrings talk and want you all to read it too. Our family is 
the most important thing to me. That longing we feel to be with family for christmas, we feel to be with them forever 
as well. Through Christ we have a way to make sure our family will be together forever. Its almost like one of those 
primary answers or things that I never really thought about. Realizing the significance of this is huge though. I can't 
imagine not being able to be with the our family for eternity. I don't know how it all works, but we all need to do our 
best to make sure we are all together. That alone is motivation for me to do my best to live the gospel. 
 
One of the members in the Schwarzenberg ward, Sister Zimmermann, is letting us call from her house on christmas day! 
Elder killpack is going to use her phone and she said I can use skype on her computer! I dont know if she has a camera 
or not but I'll be able to see you guys at least ha if she doesnt. Her email address is brigittezimmermann1@t-online.de 
so add her on skype by friday. We are going to call at 5 here so 9am friday utah time. 
 
I hope everybody is doing really good and I hope christmas week will be good. Remember to focus on Christ! I think its 
John 14:27 (if its not, im sorry. i dont have my scriptures here). The peace we get from christ should be the main 
focus and is the biggest gift. Like President Monson said in the christmas devotional. The spirit of christmas, is the 
spirit of Christ. Thats a feeling we should have the whole year and not just during the christmas season.
Have a good week everyone! be positive, be happy! I love you all, thanks for everything. I will talk to you on friday!
 
Elder Puriri

December 19, 2009

UNCONTROLLED TEARS

I am so anxious to hear from Isaac in Germany.  In my anticipation I checked on his mission blog.  I burst into uncontrollable tears when I saw him.  Oh how we miss him and oh how we love that he is where he is.

"Lift up your heart and rejoice, for the hour of your mission is come; and your tongue shall be loosed, and you shall declare glad tidings of great joy unto this generation."  (Doctrine and Covenants 31:3)

First photo taken in the mission


A fine looking missionary bundled up in the cold

December 15, 2009

ENCOURAGEMENT FROM HIS AUNTIE

What an Inspiration, this Elder Puriri is....We shall keep him & all the Missionaries in our hearts & Prayers while they go out to share the Gospel of our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ.
Thank you so much Lani, for sharing Isaac's beautiful email.  Informative & funny at the same time!!  He writes real good & we are so very proud of him.
God Bless Elder Puriri, on his Mission.
Auntie Ponti

ARRIVAL IN GERMANY

Thank you to President and Sister Pimentel for sending us an update on Isaac's arrival to Berlin.  We are desperatly waiting to hear from him.  He said, "as soon as I get to Germany I'm going to have a bratwurst."  We expect he did that at the Brandenberg Gate.

Hi Sister Puriri:

Just a quick note to tell you that we picked up Elder Puriri this afternoon.  At this very moment he is out doing some street contacting with the assistants and the other missionaries he arrived with.  This first 24 hrs. is a bit rough but they get through it.  Elder Puriri is doing great.  He will be an asset to the mission.  We look forward to working with him.

We were about 10 minutes late to the airport (that makes me sad because I like to watch them as they arrive).  We piled into the old mission van and went to the office for check-in.  After a few more stops they made it to the mission home for some lunch and a short nap...and interviews with the President.  We then had dinner (rotkohl was on the menu) and afterwards they all left for their first missionary activity - Brandenberg Gate - a tourist hot spot in downtown Berlin.  I am anxious to hear all about it.

The Elders will stay at a small hotel a couple of blocks from us.  Tomorrow they will meet their trainers, have an orientation meeting and another dinner.  (We are waiting for two to arrive from the Preston MTC).  They spend the night again at the hotel and then off to their cities.  At this point we still don't know where they will be assigned.  President wants to meet all of the missionaries before he makes the assignments.

That's all for now.  I will post photos on the blog in the next few days - I hope!!!

Have a wonderful day.

Sister Pimentel
Germany Berlin Mission

And from President Pimentel - 

Dear Sister Puriri: Just a quick note to let you know that Sister Pimentel and I had the privilege of picking up your son at the airport today and bringing him to our home for his first meal in Berlin. We’ll get him a good night’s sleep tonight, assign him a companion and an area tomorrow and have him out doing the work right after that. He looks good. He is healthy and happy. We are thrilled to meet him and to have him here. Vielen Dank und alles Gute. Pres. Pimentel, Germany Berlin Mission

December 11, 2009

LETTER #5 - MTC PROVO, UT

Hello family!
 
so this will be my last email from the mtc, I leave monday morning at 4am! We get to the airport around 5, my flight 
goes at 7 something. Its going to be a long trip but it will give me time to write more in my journal and read and 
stuff. I dont exactly have time to write in my journal a lot so I write once or twice a week, I'll do better out in 
the field though.
 
The mtc has been really good! I didn't like it at first but started focusing on the good points and now I really like 
it, it feels like...safe here ha. I'm nervous to leave and actually go and really do missionary work. Faith conquers 
fear though, and I'm really excited at the same time so it will be good. Its really cold here in provo though so not 
exaclty looking forward to the cold over in Berlin. 
 
Its been snowed for a couple days which was really cool. Most of the people in my branch have never even seen snow 
since the majority of them are from the pacific islands, so they were pretty excited about it. They had a big snowball 
fight after gym a couple nights ago and were so loud! all of them were yelling and laughing really loud it was pretty 
funny. although after a little bit some guy came out from the near by building and told them all to act like 
missionaries and that they can't be doing childish things like that. Elder Pome'e, one of the tongans was making a 
snowball at the time and asked me if he should throw it at the guy or not. I told him probably not, so he just threw 
it at another one of the tongans instead. Back in the residence halls that night they were all hyper after that and 
wanted to go have snowball fight. They've come to not really like the snow though now ha, they all say its really 
cold and they like the sun more. I got that work out thing out the other night that uncle paul sent because elder 
moimoi(tongan) wanted to use it. So we figured out how to use it and after a little all the polys were waiting for 
their turn. The schedule for the night is supposed to be: back to rooms at 930, prepare for the next day/bed, quiet 
time and in rooms by 1015, and lights out at 1030. OUR actual night schedule is: back to rooms at 930, everyone 
working out until 10 or 1015, walk around and see who has food until 1030, then all the polys go to one room and 
laugh and sing and do whatever until who knows how late. I'm usually in bed by 1045 or so, but you can hear them out 
in the halls until you fall asleep. The crazy thing is, when I get up and open my door to go shower at like 615, the 
tongans are already fully dressed and ready to go! They are the first ones ready everyday. I don't know how they do 
it. You think they always just joke around and slack but they really don't. They just like to be loud and stay up late 
ha. An elder from China was sick the last few days and somehow always had to be in the residence halls with him, the 
other night it was my turn. So I went back after dinner and changed and stuff while everyone else had class. and I 
just read and studied and stuff and kept checking up on elder Huang. Then like 30 minutes later all the tongans showed 
up, it was only 630 and we actually had class until 730 or something. They all came in my room and started joking that 
I was the one ditching out on class and slacking then they went to their rooms and everything got really quiet so I 
figured they were taking naps or something. Then I went to go check on elder Huang again and when I got to the door 
I could hear talking inside, so I just put my ear up to the door and was listening. It was a few of the tongans inside 
teaching elder Huang a lesson and keeping him company. It was really cool! They are really fun people but they know 
when to be serious and they all have a really strong testimony. 
 
Two of the tongan elders just came in and said they just barely woke up! its 1030 ha. i asked if they had done laundry 
already or anything and they said "yes, we wake up at 5 and do laundry then go back to sleep. then you wake up whenever 
you want and everything is good then you can do emails or what you want" pretty smart guys haha.
 
I've been reading Jesus the Christ, and its amazing. I'm only a few chapters in but I have already learned so much. 
One of the parts talks about fate kind of and you know how I feel about that. This is what it says though "Let not 
ingnorance and thoughtlessness lead us into the error of assuming that the Father's foreknowledge as to what would be, 
under given conditions, determined that such must be." so maybe i understood wrong but to me that means there is no 
such thing as fate or a set fate. We are given agency, and that means we determine the things that will happen for 
ourselves, otherwise what would be the point of going through life. Like I said maybe I just didn't understand the 
whole thing correctly but thats some of what I got out of it. Which makes me feel better anyway because I don't like 
"fate". Anyway, Jesus the Christ really is good. Rakai you should read it, it seems like the kind of reading you like 
to do. Its really deep and descriptive about everything and I think you would like it. I was thinking about just 
getting a copy from the book store here and mailing it to you but I dont have you address and I'm sure you can get 
it in new zealand anyway, then I don't have to spend the money to send it! Really though, read a little and see if 
you like it, then read the rest ha. Elder Tune from Kirtibati is reading it too so I'm helping him with parts he 
doesn't understand since James E Talmage uses such a big vocabulary, sometimes though I don't get it either so 
neither of us get it. Its ok though, we are both getting so much out of it and its good because we have someone to 
talk about what is being explained.
 
I've become really good friends with all the missionaries in my class/district, its wierd people are slowly leaving it 
doesn't feel right! Elder Ip from Hong Kong is the funniest person. His english sounds like ammons chinese accent but 
a lot more funny, i love talking to him. He is a bit distracted by all the sisters ha we have to always remind him we 
are supposed to have an eye single to the glory of God. He always keeps our class laughing so its nice to have him with 
us. I am the first to leave on monday, if Elder Bodhaine and Sister Clark get their visas they leave monday too so 
hopefully they get them. everyone else leaves tuesday and wednesday. Then we will all be out in our mission fields! 
Its pretty exciting. 
 
Thank you everybody for the packages I've been getting! I was going to write all you back but while I was gone with my 
companion this morning, the other elders in our room cleaned our room for room inspection today. So the boxes I had in 
the corner with everyones addresses on them are now gone out in the trash. They smashed them and put them in the garbage 
in the bathroom, so I went to get them out and someone had taken that garbage out to the dumpster...so I decided not to 
go look for them out there. Thanks a ton though, everyone loves the cookies and treats. I'm pretty sure we have like 
5-10 elders in our room everynight seeing what they can eat. Our room leaves by wednesday though so they need to find 
another food source.
 
Well I have to go do a few more things before lunch. I hope everybody is doing good! I've only been on my mission for a 
little over 3 weeks but it feels like months! which is a good thing, i love it. luckily I still have about 23 months. 
Its hard work but definitely rewarding when you get to feel the spirit around you all the time. Keep the missionaries 
in you prayers! Hope everyone has a really good week. 
Elder Puriri

December 10, 2009

LETTER #4 - MTC PROVO, UT

Dad, Mom, Rakai, Karamea, Ammon, Asa, Hamilton
My time here in the MTC has been really amazing.  I am staying here longer than expected at first but I'm actually grateful for that.  At first I didn't really like the MTC but when you focus on the right parts of it you really start to enjoy it.  I learn so much everyday and am strengthening my relationship with Christ.  I'm becoming more aware of the presence of the spirit and noticing it more in everything.  Twice a week we go and get to teach to teach mock investigators.  It's my favorite time of the week!  Even though they are already members, they still might need some kind of help in their lives.  It's the best feeling when you're teaching and the person you're teaching is really into it and you can see and feel they really are interested.  The spirit is there and you feel like you're helping in some way.  Sometimes you don't say what you had planned or you say something that you weren't even thinking.  And that's the spirit!  It's so cool to be able to teach by the spirit, you realize without the spirit you really won't be able to teach at all.  You can say all you want but if it's not sincere and with the spirit it won't teach the person and they won't really get what you want them to.  I've been really blessed being here.  From all the things I'm learning to my companions to the peole I'm meeting and making friends with.  I'm grateful I'm learning so many of these things in the MTC.  I feel like it's giving me a headstart for the stuff in the field.  So I won't have to go through as many as the spiritual and mental struggles there.  I am overcoming difficulties here so it won't be so hard out in the field.  It's another proof of how well God knows me.  He is helping me so much with the exact things I will need out in the field.  The MTC at first wasn't exactly my favorite place.  I've grown to like it though and learning all the stuff here than you can is actually kind of fun.  All the missionaries in my class, district, branch are so awesome.  I'm getting to know them really good and we've become like a big family.  We joke around, "hang out"(as much as possible in the MTC), and we help eachother grow spiritually.  At first our class had 14 missionaries but we got split in half it was kind of sad.  The class though now is really cool.  We get along really good.  Our teachers, Sister Reid and Brother Owens are awesome and we help eachother every day.  The thought now of leaving the MTC and going out to Germany is really exciting.  But also very scarry too.  It will be cool to speak German again all the time but I'm nervous about teaching.  I don't really have a good gospel vocabulary and get tongue tied remembering what to say.  It's okay though.  Faith conquers fear, and I know if I'm working hard and for the right reasons God will help me any way I need.  (John 15:7)  I can't wait to learn German to the point where I can speak clearly and powerfully with the spirit and say whatever I want.  I am really excited to serve God.  The only thing I have to worry about is bringing people to Christ.  Which is actuality is the most important and vital thing in our lives.  So my worry is the biggest worry.  And my job is the most important job.  It's overwhelming to think about it like that but it's true.  I am honored to be a missionary for Jesus Christ, and to be a representative (3 Nephi 5:13) of Him.  I want to bring others to Christ through my example and through his help.  I want to bring myself closer to Christ so that I can feel him with me all the time.  I want to be filled with his love and the spirit and want it to radiate from me that others might be able to see it and recognize it as a familiar feeling and because of it they will remember who they are, where they are going and what they should be doing on earth.  I've only been on my mission for about 3 weeks and I'm amazed at what I've learned already.  It makes me wonder what I'm going to learn the next couple of years.  I can't even imagine.  So the MTC has been good and so has my first 3 weeks of my mission.  This will probably be the last hand written letter you're going to get from me before I leave.  I will still email Friday but then I leave Monday!  It sounds like everyone is doing really good.  It's crazy to think Ammon, Asa and Hamilton are the only kids home now.  It seems like the house would feel empty or something.  To me it seems like you guys would feel more alone than I actually do.  Of course though none of us are really alone though so it's okay!  I hope everyone is doing good.  Mom maybe you can type this and send it to Karamea and Rakai or something.  I love you all, thanks for everything.
Isaac
PS - I'm going to try and send home a couple pictures or so before I leave.  Also, if you could send me some regular Burt's Bees.  The weather protector is good but it is more like a protection thing than a moisterizer.  And when I put lots on my lips turn white.  Also, get me James' address!  I still don't have it.         

December 4, 2009

COUSINS WORK AT BYU LAUNDRY



Guess who sarah and I saw at work! Isaac! He came over to learn how to sew on a button. I was happy to teach him.We were so happy and excited to see him. :) He's doing great and he got to speak with a German woman who works at the laundry. We know we look awkward in the picture because we didn't know if we could touch him or not. But we're all happy! Enjoy! Heather and Sarah
 
We forgot to say that the German woman who talked to him said that he
spoke German really well and he didn't even have an accent. It's been
an hour and we're still talking about it because we are so excited! 

          




LETTER #3 - MTC PROVO, UT

Hi family!!
so being the resourceful missionaries we are, we found a way to cheat a little bit on the emails. We open lds.org, 
click on feedback, then type out our emails in the message box! So we can type more now without the clock 
counting down. Then we we finish our email, we copy it, open our email, paste it, send it and you only used like 
2 minutes total! so then you can close it and still have 28 minutes for the day or whatever. So we can type more 
then one email and open the email, send it, and sign out without being rushed! ....it might slightly be against the 
rules but at least we have time now to think a little bit about what we want to say! I hope everyone is doing good! 
I've been getting a lot of mail/packages lately, so thanks everyone! The elders in my room say thanks too, now 
we can eat something between 5pm and 730am. How is it with just having 3 kids at home now!? That is so weird 
to even imagine. Have you heard from Rakai since he left? Its awesome he's actually over there now. Mom you 
should try and send me a few pictures before I leave, the only one a brought with me was one of the st. george 
temple. So it'd be cool to have a few of the family, also one with my long hair because nobody can picture me with 
long hair and they wanna see. One of the elders in my district used to have way long hair too and when I said mine 
used to be like that they didn't believe me. So yea, a few pictures from home would be cool. I can't get on the blog 
you are doing, the MTC computers block pretty much everything. You can't even use some of the links of the lds 
websites, if you click on them the whole internet and everything just closes ha. So I'll have to wait until i'm out in 
the field until I can actually look at it. Apparently because of thanksgiving or something my districts departure dates 
got postponed or something. So now we don't go until the 14-16, everyone is leaving between those days. Its 
probably good though because I don't feel like I know enough yet and leaving next week I'd definitely be nervous. 
I probably will be anyway but still. I got called to be a district leader last sunday, a bunch of missionaries went out 
last week including our district leader so they called me. All the missionaries in my district are way cool so its pretty 
fun, I do have a little more responsibility then before but its not bad. The zone leaders on the other hand are loaded 
with stuff to do all the time. In my room is the zone leaders, myself, and my companion. So we have to be the 
"examples" to everyone else. I got a new companion too, Elder Lau. He is originally from Hong Kong but lived in 
London for like the last 10 years so his english is good. He speaks with a british accent though its pretty funny.Classes 
are going good! I am still learning so much everyday its like mentally tiring. Every night you lay down and pass out 
right away. I've learned so much here in two weeks its crazy. We get to teach mock investigators a couple times a 
week, just volunteers who are really members but act like they aren't. We go and teach them the different lessons. 
Thats my favorite part about the mtc I think. Because even though they are already members and have testimonies 
and all that, you never know, they might really be having problems or need help with something. My companion and 
I get to teach them and we treat it like its real (we're supposed to anyway but yea) , the last time we taught on 
tuesday was way good. You could feel the spirit so strong and it felt like they were totally in to it and really interested. 
It felt really good. The people I'm meeting in the mtc are awesome, I love my class and distrcit. The elders from hong 
kong in my district are way funny and there is an elder from Kirtibati that is awesome. He is teaching how to speak 
Kirtibati and i'm actually learning a lot its sweet. I wanna go live there for a little after my mission or something.
 The tongans are still the tongans, a few left but there is still a bunch here. I walked by there room the other day 
and they were lifting the bunkbed frame off the lower bed and putting them on the ground. So now they have no 
bunk beds and have 4 regular beds and there is pretty much no floor space in their room. I guess they thought I 
was someone else because when I opened there door to go in they all stopped and looked at me like they were 
in trouble, then they all just started laughing and kept pulling apart their beds. I keep seeing jordan around its cool, 
makes me feel like I'm not really away from home when we see each other. I tried to talk to Dads mission president 
last friday but he wasn't there so I'm going to do it today, I'll let you know how it goes! I hope everybody is doing 
good, thanks again for all the letters and everything. Tell uncle paul thanks for that work out thing! I haven't had 
time to figure out how to use it yet but I will! one of the tongans was in my room when I opened it and he keeps 
asking me if I know how to use it yet. I guess he wants to use it too ha.Elder torres in my room needs to go get 
his suit jackets tailored and they told him he has to go to the byu laundry, so i'm gonna go with him. Maybe we'll 
see heather and sarah!  One of my teachers Mrs. Reid always tells us "we are not here to be, we are here to become" 
Its a simple thing you hear but its helping me a lot. To become we need to be humble and teachable, Mosiah 4:11 
has been my focus for most my time here in the mtc and its helping me to "become". well this is getting real long 
and I still need to go get my laundry out of the dryer so I don't keep other missionaries waiting. Keep eric, greg, 
and me in your prayers! we need as much help as we can get! i love you all!
Elder Puriri
 

November 27, 2009

LETTER #2 - MTC PROVO, UT

Hello everyone! 
I've been in the mtc now a little over a week. Its weird the days go by really slow and seem like they take forever, 
but then the weeks fly by. My daily schedule now is get up at 6, b.o.m. study at 7, breakfast, class, lunch, class, 
dinner, class! sometimes there are devotionals and firesides too and we have a 45 minute gym period so thats always 
good. I usually play volleyball with all the tongans and samoans, they accept me more now that they now I have 
polynesian blood in me ha. This week we had two devotionals and we heard from Dallin H. Oaks and yesterday Jeffery 
R. Holland came and spoke to us. It's so cool being able to be right there and having them talk directly to you as 
a missionary. I wrote a letter last week after I made the mistake of erasing my whole email. So hopefully you got 
that! My branch is the international branch and there are only 4 of us who are actually from america. It feels like 
i'm on an exchange again being around all the different cultures and hearing all the different languages. When I got 
here they put us on the 4th(top) floor of our building and told us we would be staying there, even though our whole 
zone was down on the 2nd floor. Then two nights ago they said they wanted us to move down the the 2nd floor. It was 
so awesome; I had everything unpacked and got to pack it all up again, take it downstairs, and unpack again!! Now we 
are on the same floor as all the polys and we pretty much get complaints everynight from the missionaries below us 
and above us saying they are too loud at night. You're supposed to be in your rooms at 1015 and in bed by 1030. Most 
of the tongans don't go to bed until way later so they're always up singing, laughing, and wrestling or something. 
Its funny to hear all of them speak english and they are so enthusiastic about everything. I don't think they really 
know my name, they just call me New Zealand but thats ok. Last night I went to the pull-up bar which is right outside 
of their rooms on the wall. They always work out right there for the first part of the night. Then I went and started 
doing stuff and somehow it turned into me doing something, then one of them having to do it. Then them doing something, 
and me having to do it. It was pretty funny. They are all a whole lot bigger then I am though ha. Classes have been 
going good. I am learning a ton and its hard to remember everything and be able to use it all the teach. You take 
so many notes and study so much its hard to retain everything, I think I'm getting the most important stuff though. 
Our class got split in half, it was actually kind of sad. We had 14 now its just 7 since some of the other class left 
this week so they put the rest in there. Now there are 2  of us americans, a brazilian, samoan, chinese, and Kirtibati 
elder in the class. Then we have the 2 american sisters. Its lame that I'm the only one speaking german in my mission 
and I never even get to speak to anyone and actually practice. Someone just told me I can schedule a teaching 
appointment with a german speaking r.m. to learn more so maybe i'll do that. I was coming back from dinner the other 
night and saw a guy dressed in regular clothes with a backpack on just waiting outside our building and when I got 
closer I realized it was Kevin. He actually teaches in the same building I have class, just up stairs so thats good 
to know.  He gave me that box and told me where I could find him here. The muffins were way good and everyone loved 
them. I felt like I was at home almost. My companion elder Bodhaine got a huge thing of brownies that same day so 
everyone was in our room that night eating whatever we had ha. As soon as anyone sees food or even smells it everyone 
is in your room. Dinner is at 5 and we go to bed at 1030 so by that time everyone is pretty much dying for food. The 
have mixed feelings about the MTC, i'm learning a lot and I know I need to be here. Its just there are so many random 
weird rules and things it makes it kind of annoying. I'm making the best of it though and focusing on the good. My 
motto while being here is D&C 11:18...I think thats what it is. I don't have my scriptures here. It says 
something like "Keep my commandments, hold your peace, and appeal unto my spirit" so thats what I'm doing! Its really 
cool when you actually get to go teach investigators(who are really just members that come to volunteer). You feel 
like you're really teaching though and you can always feel the spirit really strong. I just can't wait to get out 
to the field. Its crazy Rakai is going to New Zealand. Good luck with all that and just work your hardest and you'll 
make it. There will only be 3 kids at home...thats a weird thought. The timer is at 3 mintues so i'm gonna wrap this 
up. I love you all and hope everything is going good. Letters are the best to get because I can read them and respond 
anytime. Emails are hard because of the timer. So write letters! also someone get me james's address because I dont 
have it for some reason ha. 
Everyone have a good week!! 
Elder Puriri
 

November 26, 2009

TERI AND MOM


This is Teri Iverson, the woman who is partly responsible for helping Isaac to achieve the destiny of Berlin.

It was October of 2005 when Teri invited Isaac to go to Rotaract - RYLA - Rotary Youth Leadership Association.  On that weekend he met exchange students from everywhere.  On that weekend he came home and announced he was going to do a foreign exchange and he was going to go to Germany.

Foreign Exchange?  Germany?  Why Germany and what is a foreign exchange.  Over the course of time we have learned the answer to both of those questions.

Now if Isaac would just write us a letter or send us an email we could update the blog with his missionary moments.

November 25, 2009

THIS MATTERS TO ELDER ISAAC

Yes his mission is his focus but he followed RSL closely and they're win would excite him.  So it goes on the blog as part of the history of his mission.  As a family we all would like to have been part of the celebration but that happened 300 miles to the north. 

Utah Celebrates Real Salt Lake Day

Thousands of fans celebrate MLS Cup
Published: Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009 12:59 a.m. MST 
 
SANDY — Tuesday was another day of celebration for Real Salt Lake, and they did plenty of it. They celebrated their MLS Cup title at the Governor's Mansion, on the steps of the state Capitol, in a police-escorted parade along State Street and then again at a rally at Rio Tinto Stadium in front of nearly 5,000 fans.
It was the perfect ending to an improbable playoff run that culminated in beating the Los Angeles Galaxy at Qwest Field in the MLS championship.

"This is a day I want to honor the team. This team earned it; no one gave it to them," said Sandy Mayor Tom Dolan on the steps of the Capitol. "In our galaxy, these are the stars."

Gov. Gary R. Herbert capped the formalities on the south steps of the Utah State Capitol by declaring Nov. 24, 2009, as Real Salt Lake Day. "This really is a Cinderella story, a remarkable event. If it was made into a movie, we'd say only in Hollywood, but this is reality. This is Real Salt Lake," said Herbert.
Earlier in the afternoon Herbert paid tribute to the entire RSL team at the Governor's Mansion, and then did so again at the Capitol along with Dolan and Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker.

Dave Checketts was also on hand at the Capitol and thanked the fans and players for their role in bringing the championship to Utah. "It is wonderful to be here today and celebrate with you bringing the MLS Cup championship home to the great people of the state of Utah," said RSL's owner. "One of the great runs in sports history to become champion of the world." Checketts immediately joked that he knows there are other leagues in the world, "but they don't matter today."

Checketts presented Becker with an MLS Champions scarf, and RSL captain Kyle Beckerman then declared to the fans that he hopes this would be the first of many championships. "We're starting to scratch the surface of this team; it's going to be scary next year," said Beckerman.

After the honors in the political setting, the party began. The players and coaching staff piled into 14 Chevy Suburbans and paraded down State Street as motorcycles from the Sandy police escorted them the entire way.

"It felt like rock star treatment — everybody was on the street yelling at us and cheering, it just goes to show the fans of Salt Lake come out and support their teams," said defender Nat Borchers.

Robbie Findley, who scored RSL's lone goal in regulation in the MLS Cup and who also buried one of the team's five penalty kicks, said the fan turnout all over the city was the highlight of his day.  "I've definitely never been a part of something like that, it was cool for all the people to step out of their office buildings like that just to see us by. It means a lot. I won't forget it," said Findley.

The caravan was greeted at Rio Tinto Stadium by several hundred fans, and by the time the official festivities began at the stadium at 5:50 p.m. there were nearly 5,000 fans cheering on the players as they walked out of the tunnel and onto the stage at midfield.

Checketts, Dolan, head coach Jason Kreis and seven different players addressed the fans during the 50-minute celebration, each one thanking them for their support. Not surprisingly the biggest cheers of the evening were reserved for the playoff hero, keeper Nick Rimando. "You guys have supported us all the way through, you're the reason we're here, you're the reason we have the cup. To walk out in Seattle and see red in patches all over that stadium, was awesome," said Rimando.


November 24, 2009

LETTER #1 - MTC PROVO, UT

Hello Family,
I feel pretty bad right now, I wrote this huge email to you and went to push send except I kind of missed and pushed a different button and my email was gone.  I was just under pressure from that big red timer counting down.  So I will try to remember what I typed so this letter will be pretty long.

The MTC so far has been overwhelming.  The first night they have elders teach people in front of us.  Then the elders leave and we had to finish the lessons.  It made me feel really inadequate to be serving the Lord.  I hope that feeling fades.

I am in the International District so almost everyone is from outside the US.  There are 4 of us from America out of about 80 I think.  The rest are learning English and are advanced in their English.  Elder Bodhaine, from North Carolina, is my companion.  He will be serving in the Belgium, Brussels/Netherlands French speaking mission.  Sister Clark from Florida will serve there too.  Her companion, Sister Cutler is from Provo and will serve in Genieva Switzerland French speaking. 

(Sorry about my hand writing, I'm in a hurry and trying to write a lot.)

In my class there are kids from Samoa, Kitabes...or something, another island in the South Pacific, Holland, Hong Kong, Spain and other places. 

My daily schedule is...up at 6...breakfast at 7...class at 8...lunch at 12...class at 1...dinner at 5...class at 6...back home by 9:15...bed at 10:30.  Its a lot so by 10:30 you're dying to go to bed. 

I keep seeing Garett's brother Jeremy and I saw Jordan too.  I ran into Eric yesterday which was comforting.  He told me about his first few days and its how I'm feeling so I'm not worried.

I'm excited to be here and its cool to feel the spirit all the time.  I'm really sorry I can't write more.  I won't mess up next week with the email.  Pray for me, Eric and Greg as we are all praying for you. 

I love you all.

Isaac 

November 22, 2009

BECOMING A WARRIOR

On November 16, 2009 Isaac was set apart as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  Ra and I, Asa and Hamilton, and President Hal Anderson were there to experience the transformation of Isaac Olsen Ahmu Puriri to Elder Puriri.

We entered President Anderson's office with quiet anticipation.  He spoke to us for a few moments then he and Ra placed their hands on Isaac's head.  President Anderson blessed him with many things including the gift of tongues and the gift of communication.  The room filled with the spirit as I'm sure Isaac's Great Grandfather, Olsen Ahmu, was there to preside over the blessing.

On Isaac's next birthday it will be twenty years since Isaac was blessed as a baby by Patriarch Olsen Ahmu.  The blessing was pronounced in Samoan as Grandpa Ahmu was an ordained Patriarch for the Samoan people.

As President Anderson closed the setting apart for Isaac, we all remained seated and silent.  Isaac stood and fell into the arms of his father.  Ra embraced and held him up as Isaac was enveloped by the armor of God.  Ra would later explain that he felt as if he were holding a Warrior going off to battle.  It was a long 3 or 4 minutes before Isaac could let go of his father, stand without shaking and assume his role as missionary for The Church of Jesus Chirst of Latter Day Saints.

This was an incredible experience.  

November 21, 2009

CALL TO SERVE

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