Friday, December 11, 2015

Hard Work

Hey Everyone,
So this week was pretty crazy. It started off with a giant film night last Monday. We did it in this neighborhood in the volleyball/futball court. We had a projector and big speakers and we watched a film called "Facing the Giants". Its a film about football and how a coach uses the bible and prayer to motivate his team. Tahitians love this film!! And we had 60 nonmembers show up to watch. It was a fun night. I was the technician!

Tuesday was alright. Nothing big really happened. We had a couple of lessons and found some new investigators but that's it. Then on Wednesday is when we had some cool experiences. I went on splits with Elder Temake my zone leader. We met with a new investigator named Karine. Her son is serving a mission in Canada and she's very open to the lessons. We invited her to be baptized and at first she was resistant because she wanted to wait until her son got off his mission, but then we explained that its important to be baptized quickly so you can become protected in the church. Elder Temake invited her to be baptized on Christmas so then that way, she'll be able to Skype her son. She liked that idea and she agreed to be baptized. Then we started talking to another woman who lives next door and as we talked to her we discovered she had already received the lessons from missionaries. Her sister is a member and she wants a life similar to hers. The husband showed up as we were talking and we discovered that they were BOTH ready for baptism!!!! We engaged them for Christmas as well and they agreed. It was such a strong testimony builder that the Lord knows all things and all people and will guide us, as missionaries, to those searching for the truth of the gospel. 

​Saturday was the big concert at Paofai! It was awesome! The President of Tahiti was there and I was like 3 feet away from him! The missionaries sung last because we were the best (in my opinion). It was funny because we sung at like 10 at night...way past curfew but oh well...!! Everyone loved us...we sang a traditional Tahitian tarava, Glorious by David Archuleta, and O come Emmanuel in french. We got home at like 11! So much fun! The choir was made up of only Teenagers, kids, and young adults from all different sects and religions. I highly enjoyed the Pentecost choir. They were amazing. 

Anyways thats about it for this week. I love you all! have a good week! 

Elder Porter

Here's a picture of the whole choir (with all the religions and sects performing together)

Here's another pic from the concert. This is a little more close up. The lds missionaries are in the blue t-shirts in the middle of the picture.
Another concert pic....
A pic of the president of Tahiti speaking...

Sunday, December 6, 2015


Hey Everyone! So this week was was straight crazy sauce! It was a lot of hard work, but work that payed off! My comp and I got a new phone from the mission which has a pedometer in it and we walked 50 kilometers this week which is the equivalent of 31 miles, 5 Scandinavian miles, or 248 furlongs. The converter said 50 kilometers is too short to convert into light years so maybe next time. We met so many people! We had about 30 references or contacts. There is a lot of potential here in Papeete. I'm very excited for these next couple of weeks. It's been pretty cool also being able to work closely with the assistants! 
  We went out on Wednesday to do some contacting and we were able to find a nice lady named Marianne. She had talked to sisters before and she wasn't very happy to see us. Luckily, we used our charms and she accepted to be taught. She was actually very grateful after we talked.
  We were able to talk to another lady named Kareen. Her son, in fact, is serving a mission in Calgary. He's the only member in his family. We went to visit his mom and she was very happy to see us. She told us that reading her sons emails from his mission has given her the desire to learn more about our church. It was a very spiritual experience. 
  We had about 7 people come to church just from our part of the area. The assistants had about 6 of their investigators come to church so that makes a total of 13 investigators at church! It was super cool!!
   By the way, I totally forgot it was Thanksgiving on Thursday so we didn't really do much. However I DID eat a bunch of fafaru on Wednesday! I actually love it now. Its really good when you put lemon juice and coconut milk on it. They also had these special bananas you eat with it, and boy was it good!!! It still smells like a sewer that died but it tastes like good food! 
  I really enjoyed watching our hard work pay off! This week we get to reap the benefits of all our hard efforts! I love you all!! Have a good week! 

Elder Cole Porter

Wednesday, November 18, 2015


Hey Everyone! Hows it going? So this week was pretty interesting. We got transfer calls from the AP's on Friday. So I will be going to Papeete 2. Its a new area. Its the ward of the AP's, President Bize, President Sun, and the temple president, pretty much all the big leaders. I kind of feel like I'm being babysat. I'm going there to help the assistants with their ward because they are so busy. And I'll be training another new missionary. I don't know who yet but I'll find out Wednesday.
 The work here was alright this week. . We don't have a very large teaching pool and its been difficult trying to find new investigators. Tracting doesn't really work here so we just ended up with a lot of "No"s. We were able to find one new investigator who's name is George. He builds boats and he's pretty cool. He has a good understanding of the Bible. 
  We taught Taaroa and Bertie on Wednesday. As soon as we got there I could smell marijuana smoke. We had already heard that he had started again but it was disappointing to find out that it was true. We tried helping but he seemed uninterested. Its really affecting Bertie so we're going to suggest this week that she get baptized without him and to stop waiting for the marriage. 
Thursday we had English class and its Elder Fuller and I that teach. We started off by doing a maze. The class had to guide Elder Fuller using English phrases to find a piece of chalk. Its really funny. 
 Friday night Elder Isabell got to eat his first fish eyes and fish brain...I was so proud...the members were really impressed too. The hardest part of the eyes is the ball inside the pupil. That's always a weird feeling. 
This week I learned a lot about the power of prayer. I've been wondering for awhile how to develop a certain talent and its been really difficult. Then I remembered the scripture that says " Ask and ye shall receive" and I realized I had never before prayed for that particular talent so I started praying for it everyday and it totally worked!  It just goes to show that its really by small and simple things that the Lord accomplishes his work.

I love you all Have a good week. Talk to y'all soon.  

Elder Porter

Elder Fuller with his blindfold on being lead through the maze of chairs during our English class.
Me, Elder Fuller and Elder Isabell
View from the mountain where we live

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

I will follow Him....

Hey Everyone. So my email is going to be short this week because not a lot happened. 

Both Tuesday and Wednesday I was really sick. We were basically home for like 3 days in a row. It was so boring! I hated being sick! 

On Thursday we were able to do 2 or 3 lessons. Elder Fuller and I taught English class together. We talked about directions and prepositions. It was a lot of fun. At the end, Elder Fuller and I blind folded ourselves and the students had to guide us around a maze of chairs to find a piece of chalk. It was awesome! 

We did a lesson with the Moux family also. It was cool and Thierry (the dad) knew I was sick so he decided to cure me the "Tahitian" way. He prepared a concoction of Nono purée. Nono or Noni or cheese fruit is very gross fruit. You let it rot in the sun for awhile and then you eat it. It smells and tastes like death. But it actually helped a lot. 

On Friday, while we were at our district meeting. Someone came to our house, cut our chains and stole our bikes! It was very thoughtful of them. So we had to go to the cops to give them a report and that took like 3 hours. It was an interesting day.

On Saturday, we had the baptism of a excommunicated member. He's been waiting for awhile to get baptized it it finally happened on Saturday. It was a great experience.

We had 4 investigators at church this last Sunday​ but they all left after sacrament meeting. But church was still really good! 

Fun Fact, our mission is participating in a christmas concert next month. And If i'm not mistaken its with other choirs from Tahiti. So at one point it'll be just missionaries singing and other times it will be the other choirs singing, but, ALL the choirs are singing one song together, "I Will Follow Him" from the movie Sister Act (with Whoopi Goldberg). How cool is that? I'm so excited! Google the video of the scene in the movie where they sing "I will follow him" and you'll get a little idea of what is coming!

I love you all! Have a good week.

Elder Porter 

Picture of the brownies I made. (Thanks mom for sending them for my bday!)

Our poor, lonely bike chains laying on the ground after our bikes got stolen...

My beloved elder Hughes went home this week. I will miss him. He's the one wearing the suit coat. And I'm super sorry (mom) that I didn't smile in the picture. I promise to keep trying!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Answered prayers

I don't have a lot of time today so my email will be short.

Hey everyone! Hows it going? Things are going steadily here in Pirae. Its been a pretty good week for us although these past couple of days my comp and I have been pretty sick. Tahitians blame it on the weather because the weather here has been weird lately. Its really really hot during the day and chill at night so it causes lots of coughing. Anyways, this week was spent basically preparing people for their baptisms next week. 

We were able to find and re-contact Taaroa. He and Bertie had a meeting with Bishop and they're planning on getting married and baptised in like 2  weeks. Our prayers have been answered.

The Moux family are still planning on getting married next week so that should be super fun. We had an interesting lesson with them about prophets.

We got another new investigator this week named Eugene. His story is crazy. He was born in Brazil and raised in England and France. He moved to Tahiti to experience something new. He's a traveler. He was invited to stay with a member family and that's when he became interested in the church. He reads the Book of Mormon everyday and he already has a testimony. He was the one that asked us if he could be baptized. It's a crazy cool miracle about how he found the church. We are planning his baptism for next week too.

I really enjoyed seeing this week how the Lord prepares people to recieve the gospel. Something Elder Lynn G. Robbins told us was that behind every conversion story there was a miracle that took place. I agree with that 100%!

I love you all! Have a good week!! 

Elder Porter

Getting our food ready to grill...meat, ketchup, soy sauce, preach my gospel manual. Looks like I got everything I need.
Now to cook them....
Get some wood and cinder blocks. Lay them up against the mountain in the backyard.
Use your Boy Scout training to build a fire.
Lay a piece of chain link fence in between the cinder blocks. Place meat, seasoned by yours truly, on fence.

Cook til done. Then eat!!! That's how we roll in Tahiti!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Heartbreak and Obedience

So this week was pretty crazy. A lot of stuff has happened in this sector. 

So on Tuesday we got a visit from the Assistants. Elders Heno and Pou were transferred to Papeete 1. They replaced the Sisters that were there and now Elder Heno is the director of the visitors center at the temple. He's the First elder to be in charge of it. So now its only Elder Isabell and I here in the ward. This week will be spent contacting all the investigators of the other elders.

 3 crazy things happenned this week (some good and some heartbreaking) I'll go through all of them. 

SO on Thursday, we were at Taaroa and Berties (our investigators) house doing a lesson with one of their neighbors. There was this lady, from Morris Island, who was there and was leaving to return home. She had stayed 3 years in Tahiti and the neighborhood was throwing a party for her. She came and sat by us while were talking to Taaroa and Bertie's neighbor, And all of a sudden she exploded. She was telling us how we try to sell bibles and take from the poor and how we preach but we don't bring food or money for the investigators. For about half an hour she ranted about why God doesn't exist and why we are wrong. It was quite interesting. We tried reasoning with her but it was impossible because as it turns out she was "taero roa" which means super super drunk! Pretty much everyone heard her and we had no idea how to stop her. Eventually she stopped and left. We decided to finish the lesson, but I wanted to try and bring the spirit back if possible. I decided to sing a song before leaving. So together we all sung, and Loudly too I might add, " I am a Child of God". She almost lost it again but luckily someone stopped her. 

We have 2 investigators named Taaroa and Bertie. I've talked about this couple a lot! They have been going so strong. We've been waiting for a birth certificate so they can get married but something happened yesterday. I got a call around 7 from Taaroa telling me he wasn't coming to church. Then about 30 minutes later he called me again and told me that He and Bertie had had a huge argument and that they are no longer together. He then told me to cancel the marriage and the baptisms. I was stunned. I had no idea what had happened. I told our Bishop and he told me to go visit them after church. All through church I was worried about them. After church We stop at their house to check up on them. We discover that Taaroa took all his things and completely. Bertie was really sad. We tried comforting her and she told us that she hasn't lost her faith in the Savior and that she is going to be baptized alone if she has too. I was really proud of her. We are hoping to maybe talk to Taaroa this week but he has completely disappeared. We're praying we can find him. I know that Satan will do everything in his power to prevent God's children from moving forward. Satan doesn't want us to change our hearts and lives. He doesn't want us to be happy. And he especially doesn't want us to get baptized. Please pray for Taaroa and Bertie.

So something positive that happened was with the Moux family. They have been taught for about 10 months now. I've talked about them a lot too. They're the ones who have a son on a mission, but they're not members. They both have a testimony but they want to wait to get married on april 6 and no one can convince the husband otherwise (remember how I told you that Tahitians have this strong belief in "special dates"? April 6th is their sons bday and they think it'll be more special if they wait to get married and baptized on that date)!!! SO thursday we went over there and we talked for a bit. While we were talking to them I got a call from the stake President. He wanted to join us. The Moux's said yes so the stake president drove over. We started talking about marriage and I had an idea about what I should say. I prayed for guidance and started talking. I don't think I've ever born a more sincere or powerful testimony. I told them that being obedient is good, but it isn't effective if our intent behind our obedience is wrong. I told them that by waiting to be baptized on April 6th, they're showing that they want to obey, but on their terms. God doesn't want our obedience if He doesn't have our hearts. And I told them that by choosing to be baptized now, they'll be showing their love and appreciation for the gift of the Atonement and Jesus Christ. The Spirit was really strong and they agreed to be baptized and married on the 10th of November! I was so happy!! And The ward was super happy too!!

Anyways thats about It!!! I love you all!! Have a good week!!!!

Elder Porter

Pictures from our pday to the island of Moorea

View from the ferry of us pulling out of the Harbor.

Heading towards Moorea.

Me and Elder Isabell on the ferry, heading towards Moorea.

Our district heading towards Moorea.

Our Zone, with the mountain of Moorea in the background.

Scenic view of Moorea.

Pic of the water bungalows in Moorea! Have I mentioned I live in PARADISE?!?!?!

Birthday party and interviews

I don't have a lot of time because Elder Isabell and my zone are taking a ferry over to the island of Moorea today for P-day, but I'll give a quick rundown of the week.

Tuesday: we had zone conference with Elder Haleck of the seventy. I also got to have a personal interview with him. It was great.
Wednesday: We had a lot of lessons and there was a big FHE that night and we found a lot of new investigators.
Thursday: We worked really hard, so hard in fact that Elder Isabell got sick.
Also a miracle happened in our lesson with the Moux family. The father did a trust fall  exercise, with my old comp Elder Heno,  and when he did he felt as if someone held him as he fell, he said he floated down and he felt the spirit very strongly.
Friday was cool: Elder Isabell was bed ridden so Elder Heno and I did a split. Then we had movie night at the chapel where we watched "Meet the Mormons".
Saturday: I turned 20 years old! There was a big sporting activity that we couldnt go to. I was pretty much home the entire day. Then the other elders bought me a super good cake for my birthday (after they had trapped me in my room and slapped shaving cream on my face and chest), good times. After the cake we went to a bday party for me, thrown by our two investigators, Taaroa and Bertie. There were balloons and everything. I got the biggest flower necklace I've ever seen. Then we ate really good food, they sang, and I blew out the candles on another birthday cake. Then they gave me a tahitian skirt and a candle for presents. It was awesome!!!!

That's about it. I love you all. Have a great week.

Love, Elder Porter

Me and Elder Heno at my bday party!

Me and our investigator, Bertie.

Monday, October 12, 2015

20 years old!

Hey everyone! Hows it goin!! So this week was pretty cool. We worked really hard this week and we saw it all pay off. We have two investigators that are going to finally get baptized in 2 or 3 weeks. We also found a couple new investigators who are super interested in the gospel. 

We did a service project last week helping a non member family build a house. We spent most of the 4 hours tearing down the old roof and taking nails out of old wood boards. Elder Isabell definitely got a mysterious cut so we're hoping it doesn't get infected with tetanus. The project was really cool and we all got a pretty nice tan out of it. 

This weekend was also stake conference. We had a couple investigators come and they really felt the Spirit. The Moux couple, who are investigators,  were invited to eat with the stake president and also the area seventy who presided at the meeting. That was a very special experience for them. 

I had an experience the other day where I acted completely unlike myself. Most people who know me know that I'm sometimes shy and I don't really like accepting help from strangers or making someone go out of their to help me. However, the other day elder Isabell and I were walking to the hospital because Elder Isabell hadn't got his bike yet. A man drove up in a car and asked us if we were going far. The hospital is only like a 5 min walk so normally I would have said no,but thanks anyways, however,  something pushed me to accept the offer. We got in his car and we talked for bit. He was really nice and we exchanged numbers so I'm hoping it turns out to be a cool reference. And an example for me to always follow the promptings of the spirit, even if it takes me out of my comfort zone.

Anyways, I'm turning 20 this Saturday which seems crazy to me (and my mom)! Time has gone by so fast. I will no longer be in my teens!!  I'm very grateful for the chance I have to serve here in Tahiti. Its been an awesome first year and I hope the second is even better. I love you all!!! have a great week!!!

Elder Porter

1. View at Venus Beach (right outside our zone)
2. This is Elder Bonet...a zone leader of Mahina...and one of my favorite elders here...with a very old lighthouse in the background
3. Me and Elder Isabell chilling on pday...

4. We were at a members house and he had this training mask so we all tried it makes me look like Bane!!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015


Hey everybody! So this week was awesome. I have a son! His name is Elder Isabell and he's from Arkansas. He's brand new. I get to be his first companion. He's awesome. This week was slow, lesson wise, due to the area being split, getting a brand new elder, and conference. We had two investigators finish reading the Book of Mormon. It's crazy. They understand it so well. 

I highly enjoyed General Conference! It was awesome. Of course I loved Elder Hollands talk about mothers. That talk made just about every Elder cry. To my mom I'd like to say....
you are the best mother ever. I love you so much! You are the best example for me and I always want to make you proud!
I also liked the talk by Larry R Lawrence about "What lack I yet?". That talk really touched me. I also liked the invitation to Ponderize. I think this is such a cool idea. Me and my parents and the rest of my family are going to start doing this. They already chose their scripture verses for the week.

My investigators that were suppose to get baptized on Friday couldn't, due to administrative issues. It was hard and sad, but it'll all work out I'm sure.

I don't have too much to say but just know that I love you all and I'm grateful for all the support and prayers I receive. Have a good week!!!

I didn't have access to a computer today. I'm using someone's phone to email right now so I can't send any pics. 

Elder Porter

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Crazy Transfers

Hey everyone!! So this week has been awesome! We got transfer calls the other day. Our stake President requested that Elder Heno and I stay in this area so our mission President decided to split the area. Elder Heno will take the Arue part and I will take the Pirae section. My new comp will be a new missionary. He arrives tonight! I'm really excited for this opportunity to do a lot of work!

So we've been focusing on Taaroa and Bertie this week! Their baptism is this Friday. They hit a couple snags with the marriage but we prayed for them and it all worked out. They are super strong! They read the scriptures every day and they understand this gospel better than anyone I've ever taught! I can't wait to see where they'll be in a year.

We also worked a lot with the Moux family. They are so close to baptism. We invited them to fast with us Sunday and they did. We fasted so they could receive an answer to their prayers and know whether or not they should get baptized. The fast went really good! They felt the Spirit really strongly. We're going to see this Thursday if they'll pick a date for baptism.

Yesterday at church, we talked a lot about fasting. I learned so much. For me fasting has 2 purposes. The first purpose is to make us weak. When we are weak or tired or without energy, we are more susceptible to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. We can more easily recognize the Holy Ghost and revelation becomes clearer. The second reason is to give fast offerings. The Lord wants to bless us but its necessary that we act before we receive the blessing. In helping others, God is more willing to help us. For me, these two reasons are why we fast. Becoming more in tune with the Spirit, and helping others so that in turn we too will be blessed.

I love you all!! Have a good week!!!

Elder Porter


Group of investigators and members at a Va'a race (va'a is like canoes racing but in the ocean! its super cool!!!) the big muscular dude with the beard and long hair next to me is Taaroa, he's getting baptized this week. When his hair is down he looks like Jesus from the Bible videos)
Elder Heno standing outside our house.
The outside view of our chapel

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

No Wi-Fi on the island

We only received about two sentences from Elder Porter this week, and it was very late at night here in Arizona before we heard from him. He said that for some reason the Wi-Fi had been turned off all over the island and he was quickly typing a message home to me after finding one place that had internet connection. He said he's doing great, Working hard, and would send me a long email and pictures next week. And then he said "Ok mom. I love you! I've got to go. We have a lesson to teach." I was sad for a minute, but then I thought....what else could a mom ask for? Our son is happy, healthy, and busy in the service of The Lord!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Manliness 101

So, before I tell you about my awesome spiritual adventures, let me school you all in proper fish eatery. This week, I ate fish in the manliest way possible!! An investigator handed me a fish that had been gutted and skinned but that was it. Then she handed me a lemon and said "Tamaa Maitai" which means bon appétit. I never felt more like man. I was all Bear Grylls-ing it as I tore off fish meat from the bone with my teeth! Super cool!!! Dream come true!! Best fish I've ever eaten!!!!

For the rest of my week, It was awesome!! We started off the week by having interviews with President Bize! We talked for about half an hour! We discussed the area here at Pirae and he gave us some good ideas about how to help the ward to grow! It pumped Elder Heno and I up and we worked hard this week with some awesome results! 

We were able to teach an excommunicated member this week. About 15 years ago his wife cheated on him so he asked the church to remove his name from the records. Since then he's avoided the church at all costs. He especially does not like missionaries. However, our stake president was able to convince him to come to a FHE that Presdient Estall organized at his own home. So we talked to him there and he warmed up to us. Afterwards, we visited him again and he told us he really liked us and that he wanted us to come back to teach his family! It was awesome!

Elder Heno and I did a bit of contacting this week. We were able to meet this one French lady who's Jewish. She doesn't believe in God at all and she kept telling us that she's too much of a bad person so there's no use in trying. We talked to her and she expressed to us that she really hopes that the family can be eternal. We testified that it can and she promised to read our brochure and to pray. I really hope she feels the Spirit testify to her that God exists and he loves her!

Sunday, we had a pretty cool meeting. Elder Sinjoux is the district or area or regional something 70 over the Pacific...he was the mission president here right before President Bize. Anyways, we had a meeting with him, the stake presidency, all the bishops in our stake, all the ward mission leaders, and the missionaries in our zone. He talked about how to involve the members in missionary work. It was an amazing, spiritual meeting. I learned a lot!

The meeting made me really think about how to involve members and what really helps the missionaries out. I think the best thing a member can do is offer to go to a lesson with the missionaries or hold a FHE and invite an investigator and the missionaries. There are a lot of things members can do and I invite all the members who might read this to ask the missionaries what they need help with. Missionary work does not work without the members. 

Also, congrats to my little brother, Ren. He received his mission call today and will be in the Argentina, Buenos Aires West mission!! He hits the MTC on November 18th. We'll be almost exactly one year apart on our missions. 

I love you all!! Have a good week!!!! 

Elder Porter

Our "manly" dinner of freshly skinned fish with our investigators Taaroa, Bertie and Bertie's mom who is a Sanito (remember a Sanito is someone who is a member of R-LDS church)

Me and Elder Hughes, my zone leader. He's awesome. We were sticking with the "manly" theme for these pics!

Our district: Elder Heno, Me, Elder Hughes, Elder Escoffre 

Tuesday, September 8, 2015


So this week was pretty cool! Monday we had a Family Home Evening at the temple with 3 investigators. Its a couple named Taaroa and Bertie and Davis (the nephew of Bertie). We talked about prophets and we watched a couple of Mormon Messages. It was the first time we had a lesson with Davis. We gave him a Book of Mormon and fixed a lesson with him for the next day. So then on Tuesday we saw him again and he had already read 13 chapters in the book Of mormon. WHAT? and he understood it all too. He told us he wants to get baptized and serve a mission. It was super cool. 

Then Wednesday he had another lesson with Taaroa and Bertie. We wanted to fix their marriage and baptism for the first week in October. They were actually excited and they agreed to get married on the 2nd. However, Bertie's mom, who's a Sanito (remember I told you all that a "sanito" is someone that's a member of the Re-organized church of Jesus Christ. They do not have anything to do with our church) anyway, she is really against her Bertie's baptism so she was scared and wanted to push the baptism back till December. Sunday we took them into our bishops office after church and we had a big discussion. Bishop LAcombe calmed their fears and they agreed to get married the soonest possible which is probably next week or the week after. Heno and I were super stoked! 

​We were also able to contact an excommunicated member named Jean-Ives. He was really hesitant at first to talk to us because we were so young. We did a FHE with him and the stake president a few weeks back and he said we could stop by again. So Friday we went and visited him and he was super excited to see us. We talked for a bit and then HE asked US when we could come back...​that never happens!!! He told us he likes us alot and that he's comfortable around us. Its really amazing watching the spirit work in peoples lives! 

Well i love you all!!! Have a good week!!

Elder Porter 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

First Bapteme!!

Bonjour Tout le Monde! J’espère que vous alliez bien! Cette semaine était carrément top pour nous. I actually just realized I was writing in French, sorry, my bad. Anyways, How are all you doin?! This week was awesome for Elder Heno and I. This week I performed my first baptism. His name is Angelo and we've been teaching him for awhile now. The service was awesome except that I almost messed up with hand positioning and apparently I body slammed him into the water. I was so nervous that I must have not taken care to be gentle. Everyone "oohed" as he went in because there was a big splash. oops! I was told at least five times, "Haere maru elder", which means take it easy in Tahitian. But other than that, it was a very beautiful service. One of the hardest things about this mission is that most of the people we teach are already members. They're just inactive or excommunicated. There's a great cultural difference in Tahiti. Most Tahitians just don't see the need for marriage. As you can guess, this really makes it difficult for us to get people baptized.

We also had a really special experience this last Tuesday. We were trying to find an inactive member but we couldn't find his house. There were only two or three houses on his street and all of them had giant gates in front. We were about to leave when I looked in the window of one of the houses and I saw a picture of the Tahiti temple. We decided that that had to be his house. As we were walking up to the gate, there was a man that walked out of the house. We started talking to him and he told us his name was Tamatoa. It wasn't the member we were looking for but as we were talking we learned that his mom was a member in our ward and that he was excommunicated 10 years ago. We asked him if he had 20 minutes for us to do a little lesson with him. He said yes and he invited us in. We talked alot about forgiveness and the importance of the temple and the church. His wife is French and she doesn't have a religion and his son just turned eight. At the end, he gave the prayer. It was such an amazing prayer. He thanked God for having led us to him and he asked God to help him forgive because he's still bitter about being excommunicated. He then told us that we were the first missionaries he's let in his house since he was a member. He told us we were different and that's why he let us in. Elder Heno and I were so happy after the lesson! We are going to continue to teach him. 

I'm very grateful for the Spirit this week. Through His guidance, we were guided to someone who had been prepared to hear our message. 

I love you all!! Have a good week!!!  

Elder Porter

     Elder Heno, Angelo and me.
    Two of our investigators, Thierry and Dornella.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Lots of learning!

SO this week was pretty cool! On Tuesday we had a Multi Zone conference with a lot of other missionaries! It was awesome. All the Zone leaders gave lessons and then President and Soeur Bize gave a lesson on obedience. I learned alot! 

  So I never told my mom, but I've wrecked on my bike 3 times since I've been here. Nothing to major, just my pride, but this time I landed on my elbow (picture below). It doesn't look to bad but it hurts like crazy!

Thursday and Friday, I was sick so we weren't able to get a whole lot done....Then Saturday was really cool, We had two general authorities come down to speak to us. There was Elder Pearson from the seventy and also Elder Lynn G. Robbins! I learned so much from them! Their talks were awesome! One thing that Elder Robbins said is that "Behind every conversion story, there is a miracle"! Such a cool quote.... 

This week we've been tryibg to help one of our investigators get baptized. His name is Angelo and he's been working really hard to prepare himself and he passed the baptismal interview last week so his baptism will be this Saturday! I'm really excited for him! 

We also have been working with a couple named Taaroa and Bertie. They are so ready for baptism, they just have to get married first. However the problem is that Tahitians LOVE picking special dates for another special event. They want to get married on their sons birthday in December. They want enough time to prepare themselves. We are trying to help them see that they are prepared now to get baptized if they just get married. 

Well that's about it for this week! I would just like to finish my email by thanking my family! I'm so grateful for them and all that they do. I love them all so much and I thank my Heavenly Father every day for the blessing they are in my life! I love you all so much! Have a good week!

Elder Porter
My elbow took the brunt of my most recent bike wreck.
Me and Elder Heno at our ward building in Pira'e. 
Me standing in front of our ward bulletin board trying to look contemplative!
The ward building in Pira'e.  The building design is so different from anything back in Arizona. This one is two stories.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Work is good...who knew?

So this week was a blast! My new comp is the bomb. He's like a French version of Robbie (Robbie is one of my best friends. He's on a mission in Santa Rosa, CA right now)!!! Its an awesome companionship! 

This week we had a lot of difficulties with the work. There were alot of cancelled lessons and investigators who wanted to be put on standby. We ended up doing contacting. We were able to find some really cool potentials. 

Today was a pretty cool P-day. We started off by going to a "fiesta". There was a challenge a few weeks back and all the missionaries who succeeded were invited to a fiesta with real Mexican food. It was SO good. I had sour cream....I haven't even seen sour cream since I left on my mission. Best food I've eaten in a long time. Then afterwards we had a sport activity in Faa'a. We played soccer for about two hours then we went to the chapel in Farepiti to play volleyball and basketball. 

We've been teaching this family for awhile now and the parents have a hard time picking a date for marriage. They finally decided that they wanted to get married in april of next year. So this last lesson we tried to convince them to get married by the end of this year. They have son on a mission who's the only member of his family. He gets back next year so we proposed to them the idea of getting baptized by this November so when their son returns next year, they can immediately go to the temple to be sealed as a family. They actually really like the idea. They said they were going to think about it so we'll see if they decide to or not this Thursday when we visit them again.

I didn't have any big spiritual experiences this week, just the realization of how much I like working. I find a lot of satisfaction in working now, especially in the work of the Lord. I know this is his work. 

I love you all! Talk to you all soon.

Elder Porter 
My new comp Elder Heno, Elder Garbutt, and me

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Goodbyes and hellos

So this week was awesome. It was Elder Jessops last week and we worked super hard. We were even able to get standards of excellence. Elder Garbutt got his Visa but he's not going to leave until September 5th. Also, my new comp will be Elder Heno. He's from Paris and he's super French. I'm going to be the senior comp and the district leader which should be fun. He's gonna get here later today. 

So last night we had our last Missionary concert at Mahina, my old zone. I got to see a bunch of members from Papenoo and Faaripo. It was a lot of fun to talk to them. A lot of them still remembered my name which was awesome. The concert went really well and I got to say goodbye to a lot of good friends who are leaving today. 

We had a pretty cool experience Thursday. We teach a family who has a son on a mission in the West Indies. He's the only member of his family but his dad, mom, brother, and sister take the lessons. We teach and eat with them every Thursday. This last lesson, the older brother Steven invited his girlfriend to come. She was extremely intelligent and interested in the gospel and she understood scriptures and had an answer to every question. It was awesome. What makes her special though is that she's a French teenager. French people are so hard to teach. She's the first French person I've taught on my mission. French people are generally more reserved and usually reject the missionaries but she was open and friendly. It was awesome. She might be one of the few French teenagers in Tahiti who's taking the lessons. 

I didn't have any large grand spiritual experience this week, but I'm grateful for all of you and your support. I know this church is true. In my entire life I'll never be able to deny it. I'm grateful for the Saviour and for the Atonement. I know he loves us. As Dieter F Uchtdorf said, " He wants to Forgive". I love you all! 

Elder Porter 

Me and some of my friends at the concert in Mahina!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Blessings blessings blessings

Iaorana tatou! Hey everybody!! Everythings awesome here in Pirae! We had a pretty good week here! Both of my comps will be leaving soon. I've had some cool experiences this week. 

So Tuesday, Elder Garbutt and I got a call asking us to go to the hospital to give a blessing. We live like a block away from the hospital so we get calls all the time asking us to give blessings. So we went to the hospital and we were met by a lot of people. The person who needed a blessing was a 15 yr old boy in a coma. Earlier that day he was hit by a car and he fell into a deep coma. His parents are members but inactive. So the dad went with us into the room because only 2 visitors are allowed in the coma unit. His head was wrapped in a cast and there were a billion machines hooked up to him. I asked if we could say a prayer before the blessing. The father asked me to say it. Even before starting I felt the Spirit so strongly. I could feel all the love and prayers of his family and friends. Its a feeling I felt at a members house the other day who's wife has cancer. Its a feeling of deep peace and a dependance on Heavenly Father. Its a feeling I hadn't felt since my Grandma Porter died. My grandma passed away many years ago, but I strongly remember that their house was always reverent and peaceful. It was a powerful feeling and as soon as I started praying I started crying. I felt compassion for this family and I felt their sadness. I know the spirit of the Lord was in that room. After the prayer we blessed him and we left a small message about the temple and Gods plan for us. The family asked us to come back the next day for a prayer and another blessing. Elder Jessop and I went back the next day with our Ward mission leader. The blessing went well but only Heavenly Father knows the what is meant for this boy. 

As we were leaving more people asked us to give other blessings. We ended up spending an hour and a half there and we gave 5 blessings. It was a very special experience.

Last night was the missionary concert here at Pirae. It went awesome. There were alot of investigators and the Tahitian beach soccer team "Tiki Toa" even showed up. It went really well. I hope the concert helped some people feel the Spirit. 

I love you all!! Have a good week!! 

Love Elder Porter

Monday, July 27, 2015

Spiritually Sensitized

Hey everyone! 

This won't be a big email. We're super busy and we've got to go soon. 

We didn't have a lot of lessons this week but it was still a really good week. Elder Jessop is still recovering so It was me and Elder Garbutt for a lot of the lessons. We tried to get a lot of members involved which turned out really cool. We invited one member who's never come with us before and after the lesson he was super pumped. He talked about it at church and how it really motivated him and how his faith was strengthened. It was amazing to see how how the Spirit works in Missionary work. 

I read a lot this week in the Old Testament. It's crazy to see how disobedient the Jews were. They were shown so many signs and wonders and yet they just couldn't believe. Its kind of like a talk an apostle gave. We grow spiritually desensitized and its hard to recognize the spirit when we feel it constantly. For example, the other day we were teaching a couple and they both started crying because they felt the spirit and felt so much peace, but I didn't feel it. I've grown accustomed to the spirit so its harder for me to recognize. I want to work on my abilities to feel the Spirit and to be affected more by it. I don't want to be spiritually desensitized. I want to be spiritually "sensitized"!!! 

I love you all!! Talk to you next week!

Elder Porter 

Me, visiting elder Gouttin. We got to visit him in the hospital last Monday. He has something wrong with his leg.
Me, Elder Paxman and my old comp Elder Warren at the Farepiti concert.