Monday, December 30, 2013

The Flood Pics!

The flood

the kitchen (after the water drained)

the clean up


Flood!

Well, this mission keeps life interesting right up to the finish.. On Sunday afternoon, Bintulu had mild-severe flooding!!

The neighborhood where we live was hit pretty hard, as we are the on the street connected to the huge storm drain. (its like 7 ft deep and about 10 ft across) We assume thats what couldnt handle the onslaught of rain. So it had been steadily raining shortly after we arriced home from church at 12:30, and there was a solid hour of very heavy rain. The four of us were studying on the second floor (luckily we have one) and were kind of waiting out the outrageous rain with studies and some cat naps. But somehow none of went downstairs or looked out a window to see just how much rain was coming down...

around 6pm (raining nonstop since 12pm) our member called and asked if our area was flooded.. haha i thought she was joking but obliged her by looking out the window, to my obvious shock the street was indeed flooded with about 2 feet of water! i ran downstairs to find our ground floor filled with about 8 inches of the dirtiest water ive ever seen. hahaha so the first thing we did was locate our electronics, namely our hard drives, which were luckily kept on a table about a foot tall, so all was good on that front. after securing all possible valuables, we went about collecting all the floating items around the house. it was quite the experience indeed; mostly funny because we were caught sleeping and studying while the house was slowly filling with water... luckily the water level did not continue to rise. about 20 mins after it happened, the water rather quickly drained out of the house and out of the neighborhood. The next 5 hours were spent cleaning the house... we finished up about midnight, and the house was cleaner than it has ever been. I'll be able more clearly explain this in person, but the houses here are more or less designed to get wet everywhere, and cleaning up after the flood was kind of a piece of cake, just time consuming. we simply had to move out the furniture onto the patio, and then spray out the ground floor. which includes the living room, kitchen and a spare room. the entire floor is tiled, so we just sprayed everything down with a hose. pretty fun actually. Had we been watching, we could have saved a lot of books, supplies, and wet shoes. but other than those things, nothing is damaged. it turned out to be a great opportunity to clean the house and get rid of extra garbage.  so in recap, we got sneak-flooded. and it was a fun time. 

The real tragedies were in the homes of the area where we have many members living. they live in small, wooden houses, and the entire is lower than where we live. Some members were at home and only got about 3 inches inside, and some were not home and got about a foot plus inside. The area in general was pretty intensely flooded according to the members. some homes getting waist high water inside. the elementary school close by seems to have been hit the worst. at one point the current was strong enough to push a car "downstream" and also a very large water tank. the only death we have heard about is a family who was drinking when the flood came lost track of their small child and it has been presumed dead :/ pretty tough. The members in general have high spirits, and dont seem to be too affected. all are surprised though as this area has never had flooding before. at the community center the city setup places to sleep and eat for those in need. pretty traumatic for some people, while at the same time many people, members included, were unaffected. One sweet family of members, who are some of my favorites, were out of town yesterday when the flood hit, and they lost a lot of valuable stuff in their absence. while she did not have much to offer, this wonderful sister, sister Lily, insisted on feeding us a humble meal of rice and canned chicken curry (which was actually quite tasty) she insisted on repaying us for helping her in the aftermath.

Other than THAT....

we had a pretty awesome Christmas week. i guess you kind of know about it because we talked already, but we were brought to another dinner/open house at a member's place thursday night. 

not a whole lot of festivity, and New Year's gets pretty muffled by Christmas and Chinese New Year, which is at the end of January. I dont know much about chinese new year except that a lot of fireworks will be lit off, and chinese people give other chinese people money as a traditional gift. i will actually be pretty sorry to miss it, cuz the fireworks can be quite the spectacle. 

Im not sure i'll be sending a more interesting email home than this, so soak it up.  hahaaa

Love
Elder Giblette

Christmas Week Eve

We had an awesome time caroling this week, and an awesome time going to Kuching for the missionary conference, and an awesome time at our branch christmas party. party party party for us this past week. fantastic time. on wednesday night we had a group of anywhere from 30-40 people go and carol at 18 houses! then thurs we went to the farther out houses and visited 6 families. so much fun.
Friday we went to Kuching for the missionary Christmas conf. it was pretty lengthy, but we heard some good talks about the many different names that our Lord has been given. we helped with a service project, putting together hygiene bags for local children, and then watched the Christmas devotional. the best part of course was getting to see my missionary pals, and also a man, Kelvin,  whom i contacted before i was transferred to bintulu, who has since been baptized with his wife. They are super strong, and have plans to go to the salt lake city temple in 2015! (see picture)  also got to see some other members i knew from before. 

Then on saturday we flew back early in the morning, then went over to the church to help set up for the party. we may or may not have been there from 1 until 10pm.... but it was a blast and pretty much everything came together, even though there was very little planning done haha. 

Not a lot of "missionary work" in the usual sense was done. and this upcoming week may also be a bit tough, but we certainly look forward to how much food and fun there will be!

Dad thats really cool about referring her to the missionaries! certainly a unique way to strat the lessons, but it sounds like an opportune time to bring the Gospel into her life. 
the youth conference was in kuching, and i believe it was 4 days long. i got the card that kevin scanned for me. excellent. not a whole lot of christmas spirit here unfortunately... 

ya takraw was a blast, annd we're gonna play again today. you usually go with your head and legs, but if you have to you can bounce it off your chest. just no arms/hands. pretty fun. since im tall i have a significant advantage on the short net they paly it on. th net is probly only about 4.5 feet tall. 

as for e tyler. thats a tough call. i know he would love just kind of seeing minneapolis. but probly a nice burger place for food. or pizza. or maybe you could just throw him in the snow haha. but speaking of that youll definitely want to bring him my nice big coat and probly a hat haha. he will REALLY freeze. he said, "im really looking forward to seeing your family. it'll turnh 7 hours of hell into 7 hours of fun." haha so needless to say he's highly looking forward to it. i take it you'll be bringing the boys along? or will they be back in school already? i know thatd make it more fun for all if they came. 

Merry Christmas everyone!

Elder Giblette

PS mom i just now had a chance to watch that "what shall we give" video. really nice.

Pictures!

me n Kelvin, a man i tracted out and began teaching in Kuching, who was later baptized. coolest guy.

me n tyler n smith. 3 dead men walking haha.   #old farts

the nativity choir

my lil girlfriend (she told me she liked me :D)






Sunday, December 22, 2013

Pictures!

DURIANS.

classic me gettin angry at jensen

tracting near the wilderness (not really)
 
up making our christmas visit to the group that lives a ways out of town








Christmas Appears

so as far as christmas is concerned. its not a very big deal. its just a sort of major holiday for christians. (there are bigger hoildays held by christians) but a lot of people will throw a tree up, christmas lights arent very popular though. i'll have to explain that in person haha. 

but this upcoming week is going to be an awesome one! like last year, as many of the members as we can muster will be caroling to most of the members homes. we'll do it two nights this week, and i know its gonna be a blast! then friday we go to kuching for a missionary christams conference, then saturday is the branch christmas party. party every night! haha then of course next week is christmas week, and we already have many invites to peoples homes on christmas day. cant wait. this is surely the best transfer cycle to be finishing on. couldnt have dreamed a better place and way to finish.

we have been able to meet with our members, but not as many as we would like, but were also to do some good ol tracting. met a few good people, but mostly just waves of the hand indicating they dont want anyhting to do with us hahaha. So this past week was a pretty exciting week for the church in east malaysia. they had youth conference in Kuching, and ALL branches from east malaysia were invited. so as always, the youth who participated had an awesome time. 

today we will hopefully be playing a local sport called takraw. its like volleyball with a shorter net, and you dont use your hands/arms. we just saw a group of guys playing near our house and we were watching them and asked if we could play with them. they obliged. so later today we will be doing that. should be a blast! in addition we will be playing badminton as a distrct of elders, and thatll be a blast. 

in answer to your question mom.. I think i went on a mission largely out of duty, and also because of something that dad told me: you will be setting the best example you can for your younger brothers by going on a mission. once again out of "duty" to my brothers and family. I cant say i really knew what i was getting into haha.
i stayed on my mission because the joy and happiness i bring to others has has reflected back on me 10 fold. i have learned so much about the gospel, but more so about how people work and what things work and dont work in trying to help them live the gospel.
my mind has been opened to several new cultures, and a very different way of life. I believe every aspect of my being has been greatly affected by my mission. There really can be no other way to so dramatically improve yourself. the thing that I cant really figure out is that i have accomplished all of this while rarely focusing on myself. It is when I truly focus on the needs of people i barely know that i increase the most in love, patience and diligence. This is what must be understood by anyone considering serving a mission, but at the same time can only be understood by those who have served one!

I love you and cant wait to TALK to you about what we'll do when i go home.

Elder Giblette

ps i talked to tyler about you guys showing him a good time and hes pumped haha. i still think its hilarious that youll get to see him before his family. youll have do a "surrogate" welcome home thing haha

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Caves.

So this past week was pretty tough and slow. we had our two teen investigators pulled off date because we have not been able to contact them for about a month now. its tough cuz i have basically been meeting with them since i came here. but yet the whole time they didnt seem truly interested anyways. Also it was tough to get appointments with people, and Jensen got sick AGAIN. another night of throwing up evrything and anything... poor kid. we cant really decide what it is that keeps making him sick. We still have some potential people that we hope to be able to meet with again this week. 

transfers are this week, and i seem to have gotten lucky to be STAYING in bintulu here with jensen. many of the trainers were transferred away from their greenies.. but im just super happy to still be here and to be finishing in this wonderful place.

last week we went to Miri for new missionary training. it was kind of a nice little break after a tough week. just one day bus in and then bus back the next morning. but i got to see my best buddy elder Loke, so it was awesome. 

so i have never really explained this, but this time of year is when many fruits are in season, the two big ones being durian, the stinky, spiky fruit; and rambutan, a small, grape-like fruit that appeares to have hair (rambutan essentially means hair). but last year i ate enough durian to like it, and now i have basically been eating it as much as i can! i LOVE it. its really hard to describe the taste, but the texture is most like yogurt. im gonna do my best to try and figure out a way to get one home with me. idk though, it could be tough. but yes im eating a lot of it. 

the cave trip to niah was not as cool as the first one, as we did not have nearly enough time to explore everything. nevertheless it was super fun, and a great one-of-the-last-cool experiences to add to my list. we got rained on (the path leading back to the parking lot) so that makes a better story. 

the thanksgiving photos were awesome. i always love seeing the current you guys. i would never have thought i would see hayden in an outfit like that! looks sharp man. we had a delicious meal prepared for us by the senior couple. complete with mashed potatoes, a mushroom chicken dish, baked macaroni, candied yams, everything i could want. still cant imagine going out to eat either! after we ate we were given some extra time to relax, and we played some intense jenga haha. it was crazy. we need to get into that when i get home haha. 

I CANT WAIT to get back and be playin games with you guys again! family time. 

i hope to have more intersesting things to report in next weeks email.

love you all!

Elder Giblette

Pics

Devouring the durian. It's the best.

Niah caves.


Sunday, December 1, 2013

Back on track

So we have both recovered and were able to have a good week this week. We have met a few new investigators, and had a couple of first lessons with them. This past week has really been one of the firs weeks in a long time where we have able to make and keep appointments with investigators. I think i've had a false sense of security in just working with less-actives. of course we are still doing a lot of that, but weve been able to kind of mix in more investigator work as well. Unfortunately we have not yet been able to make contact again with michael and his family, but other people have surfaced. I really believe its a result of E jensens desires to get out and work and try to meet new people. almost being "naive" when suggesting something, but then me simply taking him at his word, and then it works out. so i guess im just an old, tired elder haha. 

Our beloved senior couple, the Vaughans, have finished their mission, and today flew to singapore and then back home. They really were an amazing couple, and the members really loved em. sister vaughan was able to learn malay and they were constantly out visiting members. there is no replacement couple for them and now one couple, the Stevens, are left to take care of the four Bintulu branches. So that will be a big challenge for the members here, but I feel they will be able to step up to the challenge, and begin to take care of themselves. 

Our plan as a zone is to go to the Niah caves next p-day. you'll remember i went there last i think july. its the massive caves that are about 1.5 hrs away from bintulu. Im really excited to go, and i know its gonna be a blast. 

Its great (and also terrible) to hear about it getting colder in MN. Im sure i'll love it for about 5 minutes.....
im excited to hear more about your high councilor adventures dad. thats a pretty crazy way to start out! 

the paln for thanksgiving (which is not celebrated here) is to have a great big meal supplied by the senior couple. There is no turkey to be found, so we will be having chicken for thanksgiving haha. regardless of what it is, im confident it will be awesome. 

so speaking of that, i'd like my firs meal to be a woodlands pizza. no joke. but we can talk about that later. perhaps the greatest "skill" i'll take from my mission, is not being a picky eater anymore. im pretty much ike dad now, "no" taste buds and ready to eat anything hahaha. ive eaten so many bitter, sour, and downright nasty things i dont think any food in america will be gross. the BEST part being that food in america is rarely served with bones. while its hard to have a meal here without it being riddled with little bones haha. 

thats all for this week folks. tune in next time. 

Love
Elder Giblette

ps i forgot my card reader so no pics this week :D

I'll

So this past week jensen and i both fell vicitm to illness...again.. We were both feelin pretty good until friday after lunch. We are pretty sure it was some kind of food poisoning, at least for jensen. I just felt lightheaded and wanted to rest, while jensen dint feel so weak. but throughout the night we was up every little while trying to poop and puke. so we took a full day on Saturday, and also rested up yesterday after church. today we are both feeling like we're over the hump, and i just hope its for real this time. So despite that rough end to the week, we were able to do a little bit of work before. 

We met a great new family through a less-active family that we have been working with. The father, Michael, is RC but not very strong. his wife and two kids are not yet baptized into a christian church. He said several times that he was willing to try our church and see if he would like his family to join. We had a nice visit with them, trying to establish what we normally do when we meet with and teach people. They seem genuinely interested, and their teenage children do as well. They live a bit far out as far as biking goes, but I know if their truly interested that we will be able to arrange appointments. I really hope that they work out, and make the determination to come to church. Ive never really taught a family before, and while i know they wouldnt be ready for baptism before i leave, I would love to teach them and help E jensen prepare them for baptism. 

Other than that we did not have many other appointments. Some exciting things are happening this week though for the Bandar Jaya branch. This morning the senior couple took a 3 families and a sister to Manila to go to the temple! So they will return friday evening, and I cant wait to be able to talk with them about the big new changes in their lives. this branch actually only has one other endowed member, and he's struggling anyways. So it will be a great blessing of strength for this branch. Unfortunately after that though, the awesome senior couple, the Vaughans, will be finishing their mission next monday the 25th. they will be sorely missed by the missionaries, but mostly by all the members they have helped so much. The worst part is that they do not have a replacement couple... so one couple will be in charge of nurturing the 4 branches of Bintulu. 

Ok, one funny, puzzling thing that we came across in a visit with our 1st councilor's family, is a bit of a riddle/mathematical theory. see if you can figure it out. we have not.

a man want to buy a t-shirt for $97, but he has no money. so he borrows 50 from his brother, and 50 from his sister. he buys the t-shirt for 97 and receives in change $3. he gives one dollar to each his brother and his sister, and keeps one for himself.  lowering his debt to each to $49. now. when when add up the leftover, $49 + $49 + $1 (debt to brother + debt to sister + what he himself has) we end up with how much money? $99... So the unsolvable question is: Where did that last dollar go? 

The theory is that when there is money loaned, 1% is lost. the same principle applies to him who borrows $100, $1000, or $10,000,000. How does this happen??

this was presented to us, and its the first ive heard of it. perhaps someone who receives this email can shed some light..?


So other than that...not much goin on haha

forgive me for the lame email :) (but dont fret, we can talk face to face not too long from now)    :D


Elder Giblette

Singapore Pics








Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Sinjapo

So we went and returned from singapore. at the beginning of the week i was feeling a little more congested than usual, then Tuesday night i broke into cold sweats, and had trouble sleeping, but when i woke up i didnt have a temp or anything. and i wasnt about to let anything keep me from enjoying me last conference in singapore. the schedule went a little like this: wed morning we fly to kuching to catch a 1040 flight to singapore. arrive in singapore at `230, and then have the day to do whatever we want until 7pm. we went bowling and ate. nothing too exciting. 7-9pm was our zone activity, where we just had a training on family history. thurs 930am-5pm was zone conference. then we had time to go get dinner, and then had a zone meeting 7-9pm. then we went out and explored singapore a little for the new guys. friday at 140 fly to KL, then back to bintulu at 430. arrive home at about 7pm friday. pretty fun and a lot of traveling. 

so i thought i got over my sickness while in singapore, but i was wrong whensaturday morning i was a little worse, with the addition of coughing to a very stuffed nose and a slightly sore throat. now im pretty healthy, plenty of energy. im still just a bit coughy. so i may not go out tonight in order to avoid coughin all over my members haha. but nothing serious in the slightest. 

so not a whole lot of missionary work done this week, but this being my alst zone conference, i think i may have just stepped onto the time accelerator, and i feel like i'll be home in no time. all missionaries who will go home before the next zone conf gave departing testimonies. that was what really put it onto perspective for me and the other guys in my group. we all felt like it wasnt long ago when we were watching the departing missionaries give their testimonies at our FIRST zone conference! so ya thats how thats going.
FYI my official release date will be Jan 16th. i havent recieved my flight plans yet, but i imagine they will come within a couple weeks, both to you and me. 

the news from you guys about the massive typhoon was the first any of us had heard about it, so thats pretty surprising. basically the Philippines and Indonesia form a perfect shield around malaysia, so there havent really ever been any natural disasters in malysia.. but it would be so scary to be serving over there.. its good to hear that no missionaries were hurt or killed. they probly pulled them all to safe locations well ahead of time. even we have a pretty set emergency procedure, so im sure in a place like the philippines they have a good system. 

so awesome to hear about your friend Rachel. in our zone meeting, a member from singapore shared his conversion story with us, and it basically innvolves a lifetime of having associations with members throughout his whole life, and eventually he just decided that he was "running into" them too many times for it to be a coincidence. The Lord really does prepare His children, and sometimes it takes longer than others. I know that whether or not Rachel joins the church, she will always value the relationships she has/had with members. keep loving her and being that example of lvoe and happiness that you always are mom! 

i got my package and transported it home with no problem. i have to admit that i didnt have the patience to wait to open the wrapped presents haha, and opened everything basically right away hahahah. the key item, the gold bond powder, is perfect. everything else is jsut a fun bonus. the little toys will make perfect gifts to give to members!

i really dont need anything else, so dont worry about it. save all your pampering for when i get back! :D

welp. thats it.

love you all!
Elder Giblette

Another week, another few parties

So we have had an EXCELLENT week. a lot of work done. green fire emanating from E jensen. and parties. mostly focusing on less-actives, as we were unable to meet with our two guys who have a baptismal date. But also met a few new people, so hopefully this week we can follow up with them. E Jensen is just eating everything up here. he loves the people, the places, and his language is coming along. the only thing he is struggling with is the food haha. he's a pretty picky kid, and does not enjoy rice, so he will either force himself to get better, or he will starve haha. meanwhile i jsut love all the food they cook haha. you all will be amazed at how unpicky i am. after malaysia, i'll probly eat anything america has to offer haha. 

We were privy to a very unique experience. A member's sister was married on saturday, and it was held at their longhouse. the grooms family are not members, so unfortunately there was alot of alcohol involved, but other than that everyone was really nice, and it was a pretty interesting ceremony. basically the thing that sealed the deal was the bride and groom, their parents and grandparents (if present) and the "heads of the longhouse" (the "leader" of each longhouse for the respective families) standing in a circle. an exchanging of rings, and then everyone in the circle taking a shot of hard liquor... luckily they allowed like sparkling apple juice instead for those who did not wish to take a shot of alcohol haha. but ya no kissing or anything. Malaysia in general, it rare to see any public display of affection. so a kiss in front of everyone was out of the question ahaha. 

so that was saturday night. then last night, at our branch presidents house was held a farewell party for the senior couple, the vaughans, who leave at the end of november. a lot of food and more ngajak.  so much fun. no alcohol or bad stuff like that haha, just good ol wholesome fun. such na blast of a time. 

So ya we go to singapore on wed and come back friday evening. gonna try to go bowling on wed in singapore since we have most of the day to do with how we please. 

pretty cool with the new car and all. how do you guys fit all the cars there haha?? i guess you think youre pretty cool and stylish now huh mom? you are! all my members love your hair and say you are a "rocker" haha. i cant wait to have the van to drive around. im seriously grateful for any vehicle i can get haha. thatll make life in rexburg much easier for sure. and i'll popular cuz i'll be able to rive everyone around! 

ya so im pretty sure the singapore mission is the most expensive mission in the world. constantly flying around missionaries. the housing alone in singapore is outrageous. they dont tell us the prices of flights, but ya i guess you could say imma frequent flyer now haha. a lot of guys get frequent flyer cards, but there arent really any benefits. 

welp. thats about it. ive been told that pres has some exciting announcements this zone conference. so we'll see!

Elder Giblette

Pictures!

check out the weaving of these baskets! almost everyone here does these. pretty sweet. its like a pretty durable plastic material. cut into strips

Me doing the ngajak. the traditional Iban dance. they say im pretty good at it, so look forward to seeing the videos of me when i get back!

all the missionaries in our district along with a few members.

the sistas.

packin about 20 people plus kids into a 10' x 10' room for FHE!  bestnyaaaaa

me n jensen at Marina Bay in singapore










Monday, October 28, 2013

Greenie in Town

So I went to Singapore and picked up an one Elder Jensen. He's relatively small, thin guy, but athletic. from Cedar Hills, UT. 19 yrs old. loves cars/motorcycles/girls/swimming/guns. kind of a redneck but not at all at the same time. likes to tell stories and is really talkative. lot of energy and questions. anxious to work and learn the language. truly a perfect boost to finish my mission. I think we will have a lot of fun together and will accomplish a lot. I can already tell it's good to have split the area, just cuz of the added and intensified focus that will be given to the members. i would explain how we split it, but it wouldnt mean anything to you haha. but E Robbins and I agree its an even split, so there shouldnt be any disputes in that regard. with the split, i will still be teaching Joshua and Sylvester, and the other companionship will take Bro Ting

Puyang was baptized! it was a great little service, I performed the baptism, and the branch Pres confirmed her. Although she doesnt understand everything, we both strongly felt she was ready to be baptized, and she has wanted to for a long time. It can be a bit daunting to know that you and your comp are responsible for deciding if a child of God is ready to be baptized. Knowing the implications of someone who is not ready, but baptized; or someone who is ready, but has been waiting for the missionaries can be stressful. Nobody wants to baptize someone and then a month later find out they really werent ready and dont want to come to church anymore. But i feel that she is ready, has changed her life, and has a testimony, so the rest is up to her and the branch. 

i left thurs for singapore, and came back friday. we had a district youth activity called super saturday on saturday. pretty fun. always nice to interact with the youth. didnt have too many appointments, but a busy and change-for-the-good week. E Robbins new comp is a native from Kuching, Sarawak, my old zone. so it will be awesome to have him in the house. he's one of the very few Ibans who have served/are serving a mission. The members just love having a missionary who is their own race, and can perfectly speak their own language. It really makes a huge difference. in all aspects of the work. 

other than that, i dont have much to say. we will be going back to singapore on the 7th for zone conference. im glad you sent the package already. i think it will get there in time. dont worry about it not being the best package EVER. i know it will be awesome! 

They do NOT celebrate Halloween here haha. I will work on getting a picture of the church and the house and stuff. its all just nothing new to me haha. but luckily everything is new for elder Jensen, and hes been taking pics of stuff like that :) ya i will definitely need my big coat and a blanket at the airport haha! im gonna DIE! 

welp, I love you all! 
Elder Giblette

Gen Conf

So we were able to watch conference this weekend, and it was fantastic! We watched the Saturday sessions in English cuz nobody came. but we had members come to both sunday sessions. which i guess last conf, nobody came for the afternoon sesh. My favorite talks were form Eld Dube, and from Pres Uchtdorf. I definitely find myself at times looking back and saying how good it was, and how much i accomplished, so Eld Dube's talk was a good reminder to me that we must always focus on what we have yet to do, and that we can always improve. I could easily say, its been a good 20 months and i deserve to take it easy for these last few, but i know that it is not right. just like keeping our covenants and enduring to the end, I must continue to get better and get stuff done in these last few months. The many talks centered around faith were also very helpful. Overall an excellent conference. One really cool thing was to hear the voice of E Trotter, my trainer, translating a few of the talks! i hope someday i'll have that kind of chance. 

Meanwhile we have yet again met some great people through our working with Less-Actives. One family, who is all baptized, we visited, played a game of UNO and then shared a message about the Atonement. The father participated in the lesson, and afterward the mother, Sis Selina, told us that was the FIRST time he's sat down for a lesson from the elders! then later in a meeting with the senior couple, (sis selina is going to the temple next month) Bro Ting, her husband, said he wanted "enter the church" as in wants to be baptized. So we are very excited at the prospect of completing this family as a complete unit in the church. It seems the Lord is greatly blessing Sis Selina as she prepares to go to the temple. So cool! we also met a friend of Sis Clinet, a long time member who is less-active, and we were able to share about and give her a Book of Mormon. she seems pretty interested. it really makes a difference when the member is there to testify about what the Book of Mormon has done in their own life, whether she is going to church or not. I can tell she felt the Spirit as she bore her own testimony again. a great experience

Transfers are coming soon, next week in fact, and i am pretty anxious. i would really love to stay here for the rest of my mission, but i am thinking i will be transferred. nevertheless, i know that my last area, if not Bintulu, will be full of the same opportunities as i have had here. 

So the Asia Area broadcast we will have this upcoming Sunday. pretty exciting, and i nice break to have two weeks of not worrying about who will teach the sunday school class haha. 


i'll definitely miss the fall season! 

love you all!

Elder Giblette

ps time is running short for all you who dont write me! haha #3 months left

New pics!

a rare glimpse of a citizen of malaysia cleaning trash!

a rare smile from E Vaughan (hes a nice, happy man. just doesnt smile at the camera too often :) )


Baptism of Puyang!




Saturday, October 12, 2013

Less active work WORKS


We have had a pretty good week. As told by the subject line, we are really starting to see some "buds" sprouting from all the less-active work we have been doing. We were able to meet with a family i have never met with before, and they were super nice and fun, and happy to have us over. I had never met the father, and he came home after we got there, and i was expecting a grumpy guss, but he is one of the nicest guys! I was able to put my math skills to use as well, as i helped the daughter study for her end of term exams. luckily it was only basic geometry, but nevertheless i have been proved wrong. I always say that math is never used in the real world, and although studying for a test isnt really "the real world" i still needed to have some skill in math to help this member  haha.   So Hayden and Kellen, take your schooling seriously, cuz you may go to a place on your mission where the educational system is very poor, and your high school education will be of great VALUE! especially math skills. haha

 

another great appointment we had was with a member who has been, in the past, one of the core members but has been sidetracked by work in the last couple years. anyways it was also my first time having an official appt with her, and it was also GREAT! we played a couple games of UNO (best game to play anytime haha) and then shared a short message about prayer and the Holy Ghost. the great part was when she shared her conversion story with us, which is quite remarkable, and then told us of a friend who lives nearby who is having a tough time with life right now, and who she feels will greatly benefit from having us teach her. So we are just waiting for this member, Sis Timah, to take us their, and i have a feeling she, Catherine, could be a great investigator. 

 

a big principle i have learned throughout my mission, but especially in Bintulu, is patience. I cant force people to be ready to receive us when its convenient for me. I cant force my members friends to be ready NOW. There is a time and place for everything, and when the members are ready to share a name of their dear friends with us, they will do so. I think thats the tough thing, elders in the past and now can sort "force" members to introduce friends by constantly asking and encouraging, but it can often turn out to be not the right timing. So ive learned and have been learning that I must be patient, and just continue working with the members and hope that eventually they will want to bring us to their friends/family. 

 

We are gettin real excited for conference this weekend. then, next week, Asia area is holding a conference which will be broadcast live to us and all other branches/wards in Asia Area. pretty exciting. the lil pinterest quotes were cool mom. did you do any yourself? also, great pic of the temple! 

 

thats all for this week, folks.

 

love you!

Elder Giblette

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Same Old Same Old

This past week we have had a little success in meeting new less-active families to meet, and we hope in the future that this will produce investigators (as well as help these families come back to church). Meeting new LA fams can be a bit odd sometimes. its hard to tell why they are less-active, and sometimes it is caused by missionaries unfortunately, and therefore it can awkward trying to get to know people sometimes haha. but for the most part they are happy to have us in their homes. Our three investigators who have baptismal dates have made good progress this week. They are Puyang, and Joshua & Sylvester, who are brothers. joshua has for the most part been pretty uninterested when we meet, and mostly just doing it to follow his bro, but in our last lesson he wasnt distracted by his phone, and he was answering questions. So we set a new date fro them on the 2 of Nov. They come to church pretty regularly, but they often just sit in the back and chat, sometimes even skipping class. So we need to see them become more serious about participating and stuff. but of course its hard to get the attention of a teenager who doesnt really seem to care. Puynag is doing really well, and has started to read regularly on her own from the BofM, but she does not have reliable transport to church.. She really wants to go, but her nephew, a recent convert himself, works on Sunday and doesnt seem to care for the church much anymore... So hopefully she and her member older sister (they are 40 and 43 years old) can take some initiative and get to church.

that is so awesome that you guys hosted a lesson! i can only imagine how great a "member present" you guys would be haha! and to have the mission president would be way cool! Ive always wondered how it would be to have Pres Mains follow us to a teaching appointment.. i know he does it on very rare occasion, but even if he did follow he wouldnt be able to really contribute anything cuz of the language barrier haha. But that really is so cool, and I hope those elders know what they are getting in having the children of members babysit their investigator's children while teaching a lesson at a members house. That's like the unattainable dream lesson haha. keep it up! 

Sorry i dont have any new pictures for you this week.. ive been pretty boring i guess. cant believe September is gone already. im sure i'll be saying "cant believe December is over already" before i know it! dont worry im not THAT ready to come home yet. Its really the essence of a bitter sweet moment. cant wait to come home but never want to leave these people. Cant wait to be free of an over abundance of rules, but never want to stop living at this level of spirituality... oh well, im not the first one to do it eh? 

We will have conference on the 12th and 13th of Oct. so a week behind you guys as usual. apparently last conference here in bintulu they had the afternoon session set up but zero people came.. so the missionaries just watched it in English at the senior's house. So we'll see how this one works out. im really hoping that I'll be able to keep up with the translation, and Im pretty confident that i will be able to. the ultimate test of language skills haha. 

sorry you have to again find a new office manager dad, i laughed when i read that she had quit after the second day haha. I just cant imagine going home early from my mission based on my own choice/actions like some elders have done in this mission recently. They are just missing out on so much! I emailed Paul Evans 2 weeks ago, and while he said its tough, it sounds like he's willing and ready to stick it out. i told him that he'll have some of the best bragging rights after its all said and done. not many missionaries get put into his situation. i can only think of a few situations comparable to that in the Singapore mission. 

So s my plaque still up, or have they had to move it to make room for the new peeps? so crazy the boom of missionaries in burnsville ward. when savage members joined, it was like grafting in the goodly olive branches haha. i expect nobody expected it to flourish so much. Savage membership is really where its at! 

I hope you all also have a great week! Love you all

Elder Giblette



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Scorpion

We have had a pretty productive and interesting week, complete with a tale about a scorpion haha

So the ZLs came down from Miri for exchanges, and although we had to plan a double day to accompany them, we were able to fill the day with good appointments, extending our missionary-like reach to more people than usual :) We were able to have several lessons with one lady, Puyang, who will hopefully be baptized on the 12th of Oct. She is taking great leaps in reading the BofM on her own, and all she needs now is a reliable way to get to church. She is a very sweet lady to attributes her surviving cancer thus far to the Lord, so its great to teach her, and she loves meeting with us. We also tried to meet a lady named Pauline, whose husband is a less-active member, and their family moved to bintulu in january from Miri, a city about 3 hours from Bintulu. Anyways, we set up a great appointment for saturday afternoon, even getting two strong sisters to bring us out there. But upon arriving and calling her for more specific directions, she said she forgot about the appointment, and had gone to the place where her husband works about an hour out of town! but she sounded sincerely sorry, and its not untypical for people here to not really have plans more than a day ahead of time.. But we were able to meet her older sister, who received two copies of the BofM. so now there is even more potential, so we will see how that goes this week.

Also, while at a member's home, in a somewhat remote location, there appeared a scorpion about the length 5 inches at the side of the room. one of the members went to kill it right away, and after maiming it, E robbins said that he wanted it haha. so they captured it in a small tupperware and we brought it home. So E robbins original plan was let it starve so he could preserve it in resin. But i convinced him to try and feed it a cicak (small lizard) ha. So on saturday we did that, and after goading the scorpion on, he struck the cicak, and then grabbed it with his pincer. the feeding commenced haha. it was a slow, gruesome experience but in the end i learned a lot about the anatomy of scorpions. Anyways, we captured a small toad and tried to repeat the experiment, but the scorpion was low on energy, so we decided to postpone till the morrow, when to our great disappointment, the scorpion had passed... So ya we had a bit of fun this week with the local inhabitants. Dont worry is was only the second time ive seen a scorpion on my mission, and the first one was flat on the road haha.

thats pretty interesting about the Jewish festival, and the relationship to the gathering of Israel. somewhat related to that, my companion is from the Tribe of Benjamin, which is pretty rare i think. he has ancestry from Syria, so thats why i suppose.

I always love hearing about all the missionary work that you guys are closely involved with! It will always bring us joy and satisfaction and happiness. other than taking care of ourselves and our families, its the most important thing we can do while on the earth. 

Thats pretty exciting to hear about the latest iPhone. and i suppose it will be the latest model when i get back, so thats cool. i love that picture i sent home of the fake iphone. I always make fun of my member for it haha, but its all in good fun. Thatll be fun mom to get some new wheels. i certainly would not complain if i had the van to drive when i get home :D get something really cool and hip, like a nissan juke or something haha. i love showing my pictures to memberrs cuz they usually fall in love with you mom. many say your hair is "like rockstar" haha. its great! 

Not much else goin on, just havin a great time here. i dont remember if i said this last week, but my dream transfer next transfer would be either 1) split the bandar jaya area and train here to finish my mission or 2) get enough missionaries in bintulu to make it its own zone and then become ZL with E Loke. both arent very likely haha, but unfortunately i dont think i'll be staying in Bintulu fo rthe rest of my mission. but perhaps if my actions merit the mercy of God, i can stay here :) I love it so much!

Love you all
Elder Giblette



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Malaysia Day

Yo
So today is Malaysia Day, which apparently celebrates the joining of Sarawak and Sabah to Malaysia. At first it seems like there are just way too many holidays here, and there are, but it levels out because people here have to work ridiculous hours, so its good that they get more public holidays than they should haha. Anyways we played Futsal with the missionaries and some members from a different branch. Really fun. Bintulu just got a shipment of 3 greenies, so the zone is pretty young now. two of the guys are cool, and i guess "normal" guys, but one looks like he'll struggle haha. anyways its always refreshing to get newbies in the zone haha. 

Pretty average week though for our work. a senior couple from Kuching is in town, giving firesides and training on family history. mostly about using Family tree.orgwhich after seeing, is pretty cool. the church has done a good job making it fun and intuitive for younger people haha. (i sound like an old person) 
We've been to the hospital a couple times, visiting mothers and their sick infants. nothing seriously luckily, so its nice to show our support and concern for the great members here. We've been having pretty good success with helping less-actives come back to church, and one family's 12 year-old son was recently ordained to be a deacon, and has been passing the sacrament for 2 weeks now. its so great to see family's come back to church and feel the love and friendship they once knew. One sister in particular, when i first got to bintulu, wasnt our biggest fan, but since E Robbins came she has been much more welcoming to having us over, and she seems to really enjoy having us. 

Its really exciting to hear about all the stuff happening in Burnsville wight now, and while im not quite ready to leave malaysia, i wouldnt mind being part of the action there! 5 missionaries would be pretty cool, and perhaps burnsville is continuing its legacy of missionaries loving that area.

I also love hearing about all the creative things youre doing with seminary mom, and i know the kids are enjoying it as well haha. its too bad you were my teacher for your first yaer only, when you were atill a greenie teacher :) i couldve been enjoying your expertise, but oh well, i guess thats for kellen and hayden to enjoy. 

i wrote a short message to Paul, i hope it helps him. i think the training period can the best or wrost time of the mission. im sure he just feels like things will never change, and that he'll just be stuck there forever. but he'll make it, hes a tough kid.

sorry i dont have to much to write about. i guess it was a pretty boring week haha. everyone else in bintulu had a bit of a hassle.. they went to singapore to pick up their greenies, and on their way back their flight was cancelled in KL, and they didnt get back until Sunday afternoon, AFTER church haha. 

but ya E Robbins and i have some new plans to find new investigators, so hopefully we can get it done.

love you all!

Elder Giblette



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Transfer Week

So earlier today we got transfer news, and Im STAYING in bintulu! im pretty pumped about it, as i really dont want to leave this great place. The members have been bothering us about whether we are being transferred or not, and despite having elders for over ten years, they still havent figured out how transfers work hahaha... but Elder Robbins is also staying, so we will be together for another 6 weeks, which is fine by me. So in my dreams, this will set me up to train the last 3 months of my mission in Bintulu. So they will split Bandar jaya and i will train and die here. (all in my dreams haha) 

So Lucyana was indeed baptized this past weekend, and it was a great service, with three children being baptized from another branch. She is 19 and lives with one of our strongest members and her daughter, so I think as far as being in a nurturing environment, shes in the best as a new convert. Our work is coming back to a point where we will need to start finding/teaching new people, as out pool shrinks a bit again with another baptism. Its easy to simply be content with a relatively light workload, but I am realizing i can and need to do more. Always, always things to be improving on. 

So as you will find in the pictures i sent, my sewing expert companion has taught me how to hand sew ties. so the red tie in the picture is totally from scratch, and i myself did about 80% of the stitching. it doesnt take very long either, and its fun to do during our free time. 

Its so good to hear that Kellen and hayden are doing awesome in seminary! Im glad that my bad example didnt rub off on them haha, but it woudve been fun to attend seminary at the same time as kellen. Anyways seminary at times seems like a distant dream, and other times like i just finished it. I guess thats like high school as well. 

So each transfer p-day, we have a BBQ at the beach, and today before doing that, our district went to the tiny Bintulu zoo. its not much to see, but the main attractions are the hornbill and the crocodiles. We smuggled a chicken into the zoo, and attempted to feed it to one of the crocs, but it wasnt interested. and to make us feel silly, one of the employees walked by shortly after we tossed it in, and wasnt too happy about us doing it hahah. but in the end they didnt do anything, so its not a big did. Malaysia Boleh! 

Theres not much to report on haha. as of this transfer, i have 4.5 months left, unless i got to February  but i think i will go in Jan. not sure yet though! 

Love you all!

Elder Giblette



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Lots O Pics!

a small bead keychain Sis Eda made for me! way sweet

a tie that I made from traditional (souvineir traditional haha) fabric. my comp did a fashion internship before and is really handy with a needle and thread. so he taught me how to make a tie. this one i did about 80% of the stitching, but ive already made a new one that is way better and i did all the stitching! im pretty CRAFTY!

a tasty Bintulu sunset

the group attached to our branch that live in a longhouse about an hour outside of town. we teach them english and reading each saturday

Bintulu happens to host the Annual Borneo International Kite Festival, so we checked it out for a bit. pretty cool, but not quite on par with an international event hahaha

not much,
but you got yur classic baby with a towel on his face

 and one of the worst names for a doctor haha

Long story short, we caught a scorpion at our members house and then fed a cicak (small lizard) to it on Saturday. it. was. awesome.

goin out to a longhouse to meet a potential investigator with two great members, Sis Sia on the right and sis Dari on the left! Kelvin (Sia's kid) also came. great fun


iPhone 5M hits Bintulu! (M stands for Malysian fake) complete with antenna for better reception.

we also tried to feed a toad to our scorpion, but the scorpion didnt go for it...

me..

me about to crush children

twister Iban style. 4 people, square made up of 4sq tiles, and your opponents calling the shots. classic