Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Week 33--Life of a City Boy

FIRST OFF, gotta give a shout out to the Brown family. Only the coolest cats on the Island of Oahu. For those who don't know, I met them on the North Shore, and we quickly became family. A very large portion of the person I am now, especially in a spiritual sense, have quite a bit to do with them. I will be forever grateful for the example they were to me. ANYWHO, the reason I'm giving them a shout out (like a shout out in Gleave's email is such a big deal anyway) is that they called me this past week and said they are moving to Misery. I mean Missouri. But this left me with a sort of bittersweet feeling. I'm sad because we won't be in the same state anymore, but I'm excited because they will be closer to Colorado and Utah when I get home. And since I am the localist of all local boys, I would like say for the Island of Oahu and the State of Hawaii, Aloha and Mohalo. You will be missed! 
Okay, well sorry I didn't write yesterday! I had a very important appointment with the big man today at the house of the Lord. That's just a semi-creative way to say I went to the temple. Anyway, so today is our P-day! So you get Tuesday Gleave instead of Monday Gleave. The temple was amazing as always! It never ceases to amaze me at how calm I feel during and after the temple. It always helps to put things in a more of a eternal view rather than a temporal view. 
It's weird, tomorrow I've been out 8 months of my mission. It's very bitter sweet. That means its only 16 more months till I get to see you guys, but also that means I have only have 16 more months. In some respects, I never want it to end. I never want to quit the mission.

There was a lot of fun things that happened this week! We went to go do service at the Battleship Missouri. We swept a section of the ship called "Broadway" because it is the longest corridor on the ship. I felt like I was an old time seaman. A part of me wishes I were alive during the Second World War. I have always been partial to that time period, and even though it was terribly devastating, I have such incredible respect for them. Actually, last week while I was writing my email, the father of my Bishop here came up to talk to me. He is in his 90's and an amazing person. He was born in Hawaii, but his parents were from Okinawa, an island off the coast of Japan. When Pearl Harbor was bombed, people became suspicious of him, and so they sent him in a concentration camp here in Hawaii. After all their hard work and desire to serve in the military, the US government decided to organize them into the army. Indeed a very incredible story.
That's the best thing about missions, just meeting the different people and hearing their stories.  People's stories that I'm not too interested in are ones about Vegan food. I went to a Vegan restaurant and it was not fun. It literally was traumatizing. Ew. No.
Our family that we've been teaching came to church this week! I can only imagine the hardship of switching from Catholic Mass everyweek to Mormon Sacrament Meeting, but you gotta do what you gotta do for the restored gospel. To fellowship with them, we went to the Bishop Museum with them. We rode there, in the Dad's own terms, "Ghetto-rigged bikes", which was fun because it was Elder Cagilaba's first time really riding a bike. When we got back he was like, "Oh Bro, my mind is like addicted to riding bikes." Haaa....okay Cagilaba. At one point I thought he had crashed but in reality his hat had just flown off and he was going back to get it. The museum featured a lot of really neat ancient Hawaiian artifacts. The dad knew all these awesome facts so it was like having your own tour guide. Fun day.
WELL GOOD NEWS IS THE DONKEYS ARE IN THE SUPERBOWL! I always try to get the score on Sunday cuz I'm so excited to hear who won, but it'
s just not the same as watching it. I wish I could see it! Sacrifices Gleave...Sacrifices...
Well anyway, I hope all is well with my various friends all over the world. I miss you all so dearly and pray for you always! Hope the Puppy Bowl is a good one this year!
Your favorite missionary,
Elder "Did he just dunk?" Gleave

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Week 32--Dogs, Lawyers and the Emergency Room


That's hi in Fijian. Courtesy of my companion. This week has been super stellar! It feels like so much happened and that it all couldn't fit into one week, but somehow it did. Here's something I noticed about writing in my journal, and I guess it applies to writing emails as well. In the scriptures, it says that Nephi could only write 1/100th of what actually happens to him, and that's what I feel! So much happens from Monday to Sunday, that it's hard to get everything down. I always feel like I haven't written enough! That's okay, I guess I just have to be choice in what I write down. 

So a couple of really, really awesome things happened this week. On Thursday, while we were walking around, my companion and I stumbled on a couple of doggie-get-togethers! It was a dog-o-poolza. I'm not sure what they were for, but I'm not sure I care. All I know is both me and the pooches were having a good time! 

On Sunday, the family we have been really trying to work with came to church! It was the first time that they went to a Mormon church, and after both of the parents spent their whole lives in another church. Transitioning to a different church, let alone a Mormon church must be quite the experience. But I think they liked it! But the joy of seeing the whole ward gather around a family to help them have a good spiritual experience was a big testimony builder of how amazing the Saints are. It brought such joy to my heart. It was pretty funny though, because the dad is a lawyer, so he is incredibly smart. You could just tell his brain was processing all the comments, looking for faults, and absorbing every little detail. Overall though, other than some pretty deep doctrinal questions, I think he enjoyed it! I guess we will find out on Thursday, so stay updated! It's a blessing to see the fruits of my labor.

On Tuesday, we were eating dinner and finished around 8pm. I had just read an 
Ensign article and I decided I had better go out and see if we could talk to someone for an hour. So we were walking down the street and we stumbled upon one of our more...eccentric members, Shaloha guy, and he was asked us, "Elders! Do you perchance have a moment of time?" "Uh...yeah sure!" "Okay. There's someone at the hospital I need you to meet." In my mind, I was thinking score! A new investigator. We hopped on the bus, which was the first time I have ridden the bus that late, and headed over to the emergency room. When we got there, one of his Aunties had been in there and he brought us over and was like, "Do you want to talk to the Elders?" "No. I study with the Jehovah's Witnesses" Which isn't a bad thing, but we usually only try to talk to people who are interested because we don't want to force them into the gospel. But the member was persistent. "I think you should listen to them. Your life is not in a good place and they have what you need!" "NO. I study with the Jehovah's Witnesses I'm a grown woman I don't need their advice!" So by now, everyone in the emergency room is watching us and let's just say it was a most uncomfortable situation. Then the member suggested to say a prayer! WHAT. Don't get me wrong again, I absolutely love saying prayers, but not when a whole emergency room of people are staring at me and they lady wants no part in the prayer. So imagine this situation: Two mormon missionaries, a Jewish-looking man, and a very irritated homeless lady all in an intense argument about Jehovahs and Mormons. To make matters worse, my companion and I couldn't decide who would say the prayer, so he whips out a pen and throws it into the air as some weird spin the bottle thing to see who would say it. If you ask me, it was pointing to Elder Cagilaba, but he swears it was pointing to me. So I just went ahead and said it. So awkward.  I can imagine Heavenly Father was getting a chuckle at the whole situation. But when we got home, the ZLs called us with two referrals, so I know that the Lord blesses you for enduring through trials. 

Funny stories aside, this week has been a very good week to grow closer to my Savior and Father. On a mission, he constantly puts his hand into your life, and I am certainly blessed to be a part of it. I am a tool in his hand. I love Jesus. 

Got to get going, but I love you all! Miss you so much!
Elder Top Dog Gleave
ps I pet my first sheltie since Jake. It was good to see some!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Week 31: New Year, No Fear

Hey guys. 
So I was pretty proud of that title of the email. I've been trying to think of a really creative one all week, and so that's the best I got. It's weird to think about that I'm going to be spending an entire YEAR of only being missionary. Like 2014? Dedicated only towards preaching the gospel. Sounds exciting to me. So my new companion, Elder Cagilaba (but it's pronounced "Than-gee-lam-ba") is so awesome. All he wants to do is work and be obedient. I was like, "Those are all my favorite things to do...EVERY. SINGLE. DAY" (Nacho Libre reference). So that's what we are doing. Working hard and being obedient. Every single day! It's been like a breath of fresh air being with him. If you don't mind, I'm going to forgo talking about me for a second and tell you his story. 

So he is from Fiji. He was born Catholic. In Fiji, respecting your ancestors is very important, so Elder Cagilaba asked his Dad which was the first church established on the Earth. His Dad said Roman Catholic. And so he spent the first 15 years of his life Catholic. One day he came home to find two guys in white shirts teaching his brother about a church. He went into his room and laid on his bed, but eavesdropped on their conversation. Two points hit him very hard: 1) Families can be together forever. He loves his family and the prospect of being with his family forever was to hard to pass up. 2) The Church of Jesus Christ was established on three foundations: 1. Prophets 2. Apostles 3. Jesus Christ himself. He then became interested in the Church and three months later he was baptized. Fast forward a few years, and he brought the gospel to his two younger brothers. Fast forward six months ago, and the Fiji mission was short a few Elders and so he was called to be a mini missionary for a month. Turns out they needed him for six months. So ever since he was baptized he tried again and again to teach his parents about the restored gospel of Christ. But they wouldn't listen. Well he went home for a few weeks after his mini mission and was about to prepare for his full-time mission and his parents told him that they read the Book of Mormon he gave them and wanted to take the lessons and be baptized. So a week before he left on his mission he baptized his parents. Now they are waiting for him to get home so they can go to the temple! Such an amazing story. You should hear him tell it in his Fiji accent. A lot cooler sounding. Anyway, with a testimony like, how could you not love the guy? 

We are doing super well here. Miracles are happening all around us! Funny story, the other day we were walking down the street and a guy was like "Hey man, can I use your phone? Mine's dead." Sure. So he talked for a couple minutes and then gave it back and was like thanks man, I just got out of prison and my phone isn't charged. haha ohhh okay!  And so then we separated ways. Well like three minutes later the phone rings and a lady was like, "Hello is Miguel there?" but there's a Cagilaba? "I just got a call from this phone?" Ohhh! No sorry we went different ways. "Who is this that I'm talking to?" Missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ. "Oh. BRING MY SON TO CHURCH." So we got her address and we are going to teach him next week! hahah missionary lyfeee.

Well got to go! Hope you have all set some new year's weight loss goals cuz I for sure have. Let's be successful together? Okay. Well a hui ho!

Much Love,
The Prince of New Years
Elger Dleave

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Week 30--HAPPY NEW EARS--I mean New Years


It's officially 2014. I hope you all are wearing your big boy pants because you should expect a wild year. It's gonna be a good one!

Last night was fun! We got to stay up until one in the morning. I was more excited about the thought of staying up until one than probably actually staying up until one. It's funny, only on missions do you see a group of 18-22 year olds struggling to stay up past midnight. We got to go up to a real ritzy house on the top of a mountain that overlooked all of Honolulu. Lots of fireworks! Boom boom boom! 

There was a guy who has been attending the Catholic Church and the Mormon Church for upwards of 10 years now, and his wife is a member and has two kids that went on missions. Well he said he would never get baptized, but about a week before Christmas, he was laying down and his neck started cramping up. His wife told him he was being too stiffnecked. So regardless, he asked for a blessing from the missionaries. After he got the blessing, it started hurting worse. Then a couple days later he asked for another blessing, and yet again the pain increased. That night it was so bad that he couldn't sleep and was just praying and praying for it to feel better. He finally said, "Heavenly Father if you help the pain go away I will be baptized." He woke up the next morning with no pain in his neck and was baptized the Saturday after Christmas.  Practically the whole stake was there.  Pretty awesome.

I got a new comp. His name is Elder Cagilaba (than-gee-lamba) and he's from Fiji.  He became a member and then baptized his whole family within the next 5 years. He's awesome.

Well I hope this year is good! Got to go. Love you all and be safe! 


The fireworks king