Tongan Beach

Tongan Beach

Friday, October 23, 2015

Week 3: MTC-I still can't sing worth a darn

Hey what is up my family!!

It seems like forever in between each time I email and it also feels like the weeks are simply flying by! I think I don't notice the days go by because they are pretty much all the same. I'm learning a lot though so that's good! Tongan is hard, but I’m doing well. I still can't sing worth a darn and Tonga has a bunch of hymns special to Tonga, so I don't even know the tunes. Yeah, it's rough. In my class I’m pretty good at Tongan compared to other people, but I still really suck. 6 weeks is not enough time to learn a language. My trainer is going to be in for a surprise. I think everyone suffers a little bit, however, and so I don't think I’ll be anything special.
Devotionals are cool. We had a BYU football player who did a presentation at the stake youth conference. Chad Lewis- he's pretty cool. We've had a member of the 70 and the president of the 70, L Whitney Clayton.
This week has been good; I love the packages I’ve gotten. I love the cookies! They are the best!!! Jake is really funny and I miss the family. We take a temple walk every Sunday and take pictures. I got my pictures and now my entire mission is to be doing awkward stuff in other people's photos, just in the background. It’s really funny! And when people ask me to take a picture, I pull a Turley and take a selfie first instead! It’s funny watching people when they notice. I leave on November 15 I believe. It’s gonna be exciting!
I’ve gotten into the groove here so it's very easy and not much goes on. I’ll add some pictures once I get my card reader back. My companion is using it right now. I’ve been getting along great with my companion! We don't talk a ton, which is fine cause I’m a quiet guy. We also work well on lessons together and teach pretty decent. Neither of our Tongan is not the greatest, but everyone kind of sucks too. My district is great! We are all good friends and a lot of us are going to Utah State after our mission! Maybe I’ll have some friends. Maybe not. Sunday, Tuesday, and Friday are the best here. Sunday we don't really have class, Tuesday we have a devotional and Friday is P-day. We wake up at 5 am and go wash our clothes and what not. Doing laundry is actually fun. I enjoy it cause it's all clean and I can fold it all nice and put it away and it smells good. My mom's genes obviously. I also love gym every day. I work out a ton because if I don't I’ll get super fat! Everyone here is putting on weight. I’m staying roughly the same so that's good! Getting in shape too I think. I run anywhere from 1-5 miles. I like spin biking a lot so I don't know how to calculate that. The machine says I bike like 10 miles or whatever.
Anyways I don't really have much left to say... Thank you all for the emails! I’m sorry about Laura’s chickens. How are our chickens? Have the others started to lay?

Eleta Sitaki out

Friday, October 16, 2015

Week 2: MTC-That book is awesome!

Hello my family,

How is everyone? I'm doing well. Life at the MTC is... repetitive. It’s food, class, food, class, food, class, sleep, repeat. P-day is the best because I don't have class until later. Class itself isn't bad; the language is hard to get a hold off, but that's true for every language I’m sure. The spirit here is wonderful. You can feel it all the time and everything we do involves it and invites it. Well except for at night, we get somewhat wild and I’m sure the spirit goes to bed way before we do. We are doing a terrible job of following the bedtime rules. Our district became the chill district or something, we always have people in our apartment, and we have like 4 extra chairs from who knows where. Last night an elder was about to stay the night with us and brought a pillow and everything. Kind of weird. There’s a bit of stupid drama that goes on with other districts, but ours is fine. I’ll put some pictures I took of us in front of the temple and I’ll name everyone.
This week has been good. We got into the routine and now everything is pretty easy and we know what’s going on. We are teaching 2 fake investigators now- that’s always a challenge. My companion Elder M and I are trying to get away from using notes and instead teaching with our really, really bad Tongan. But you know that's life. How is it going on the home front? I love to hear from you guys! You can dear elder me too. I don't know how it works, but my mom does.
I had this really, really sweet experience when I was reading the Book of Mormon; well actually I’ve had quite a few. That book is awesome!!!! Once I actually invested in it and started reading it and applying it I have learned so much and it invites the spirit like nothing else. Anyways, so I read 2nd nifia veehe 9 and, wow, the spirit was strong! That chapter is probably boring to everyone, but I loved it and I’ve re read it probably 3 or 4 times in a row. I encourage you all the read and listen to it. So much stuff! I went to the temple today, always a grand experience. Everything about here is pretty awesome except how much class. 5 weeks left... hope I can make it haha. Have a good one! Ofa atu!
BTW! My nametag in Tonga will say "Eleta Sitaka." It also has some accents, but I don't know how to type that. 

Sitaka out

Owen and his District

Owen and his MTC companion

Friday, October 9, 2015

Week 1: MTC- First P-Day

Hello my dear beloved girlfriends. Oh wait I mean family! How’s it going?? How are you mom? Feeling okay? I love you! Same with Henry! The MTC was quite a surprise. It’s a lot harder than I expected and it's pretty crazy! Oh well. The language is pretty difficult, but its coming along I think. I'm not gonna bother with correct grammar or any of that stuff in my emails. It will take too long and I have a time limit. It's only the third day of the MTC so I don't have any pictures or very much to tell.
First day- well, pretty crazy. I put my luggage in my room then went to class. I then proceeded to sit in a room with some weird guy in a white shirt speaking Tongan to me with ZERO English whatsoever. I had no idea what to do, luckily the other guys in the room were pretty chill and we kind of worked together to figure out what the teacher was saying. (BTW, the teacher was the weird guy in the white shirt in case you didn't figure it out). That class lasted about 2 hours of nothing but Tongan. After which we had a devotional kind of thing by the MTC president. It was really nice and the spirit here is very strong. The hard part came later when we were talking to fake investigators and trying to listen to what the spirit told us to say. Feeling the spirit is one thing, understanding it and speaking what it wants is a whole 'nother ballpark. Learning the language of the spirit is what I've struggled with, but since it's only the third day I’m not going to beat myself up just yet.
 My companion is a Tongan guy from Salt Lake. He speaks only a little more Tongan than me so I’m gonna keep up as best I can. He always wants to talk to the other Polynesian missionaries, and we tolerate each other. Hopefully I can come to love him and have a great time. My P-day will be Friday so I can usually email then. I will try to read every email you guys send, but I might run out of time so responses might come a week later. I went to the temple this morning. It was a little refreshing because it's all the same, but also confusing because the Provo temple is huge and I have no idea where to go and what to do. I went to the 8:20 session in case any BYU students just "happen" to bump into me.
I love the letters Jake and mom sent me. It feels nice to know I’m not alone. Thanks for that! My comp is Elder M. My district is pretty fun; there are 2 white guys (I’m one of them), my companion, and 3 guys from Taiwan and Malaysia. The 2 from Taiwan don't speak English very well at all, but since we're all learning Tongan, that's okay! I can't really think of anything else to say. Oh wait. Mom, can you order a lava lava off Amazon? An elder told me I could get one there and I really want it. Also the Hi Chews are very popular. If you were felling generous I’d love as many as I can get. That's it, have a good week! I’m excited to hear from you next Friday. 

Love you, 


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Elder Stark goes to the MTC

Owen flew out early this morning to Salt Lake City. Paul had a business trip in Texas so they got to go through security together. There were a few tears, but not on Owen's part.

Owen's cousin Sam picked him up from the airport in Salt Lake City and drove him to Provo where he had luch with all of his BYU cousins and grandparents.

Then Jake and Anndi drove Elder Stark to the MTC, stopping on the way to take some pictures at the Provo Temple. He seemed happy, relaxed, and excited to begin the adventure.

 And there he goes. Can't wait for the first letter.