Records are meant to be broken... 8/29/10

What a week what a week what a week!!! For the big news first our zone was blessed in a significant way to be able to accomplish 30 baptisms this month. The prior record was 22 so it was nothing but a blessing from on high!! We are one of two zones that have ever hit 30 or above. Manurewa hit it this month as well with 31, but they have 14 companionship's hahah. We had a conference call with all the zone Leaders and President Porter this morning and he was just over the moon!!! As a mission we were able to save 172 souls another new mission best!!! In the coming months we are striving to qualify what they did at the waters of Mormon in the Book of Mormon, that would be a mighty 204 souls saved we have so much work to do, but we know that we have a loving Heavenly Father who is all about progression! My favorite part about the whole thing is that there is no way that we can be prideful about it!! There were way way way to many miracles that lead to the total out come. This is God's work, and we are simply instruments in his hands!!

Tomorrow we will head down to the temple so we are very excited to be coming to the end of our cold winter months and let the sun shine on!! I am in definite need of a large boost of energy from source that is beyond my own power! As President says to us zone leaders you are old worn out war horses, but we need you to keep fighting the good fight!! Things are overall just going very very well. This past week we gave tours at the new Missionary Training Center in Manukau it is an incredible building and the missionaries who get to go there will be very spoiled. The Technology is very up to date, and you all know how much I love my technology haha We also went as Zone Leaders up to Whangarei Falls that is where the picture comes from, and we had our meeting up there this month. It was great to be there, and we all had the chance to bare oue testimonies so it was a very powerful day! Not to much else to report we have 9 people that we are preparing for baptism for this month; Three for this weekend, and then at least every weekend in September!! There is heaps of work to do so we will stay very busy!!! So that's it for now I am sure I forgot stuff, but there is always next week!!! Love you all!!!

Elder Matthew Lee Stucki N.Z.A.M.

Life is GREEEEEAAAATTTT.... 8/22/10

What a week it has been I say that every week but good gravy we have been incredibly blessed this week. We set 6 people for baptism this week, 1 for August and then the rest for September. We had 7 at church , and heaps of Lessons. Any missionary will tell you that that is what we love to do teach. Finding can definitely be a fun adventure, but teaching people is second to none, other than maybe baptizing. Well we were blessed in that regard as well this week!!! Te Whahuia was baptized on Saturday and confirmed as well. My last companion Elder Davidson came back and we both spoke, and then Te Whahuia Chose me to baptize him as well. The meeting was one of the most powerful of my entire mission!!! There was not a dry eye in the house. The Richardson family has literally become my home away from home, and my family in New Zealand. We absolutely love going over there and being with their family!!! The Mother is a member and hopefully before I go home John the dad will also be baptized!!! Sister Richardson also got up and spoke at the baptism and she calls Elder Larson, Davidson and myself her sons. I wish I could put into words the feelings of that day, but it would never do it justice!!! That night they took us to a Thai restaurant which was yum yum, and only like the 2 time I have been in a legit sit down restaurant since I have been in New Zealand. On our way there it felt like we were just meeting up with family for a dinner. Heaps of their extended family were there that are not members of the church, so were are looking for more opportunities from that as well! It was definitely a weekend to remember. Fred also came to church all three hours, and loved it again. He has quit all of his bad habits i.e. drinking and what not since we started coming over, and before we even taught him that it was bad!!! He is really doing great!! Also we found a 9 year old girl that there family just started coming back to church, and she will be baptized this weekend so long as we can get everything taught that we need to!!! That usually would be no big deal, but Tuesday- Thursday we are in Leadership meetings so that will be something we have to work around, and get to her in the night! Also there is a 12 year old girl named Lauren. Her dad is an active member, but the mom turned anti after being given some anti-Mormon stuff a few years back, so she won't let here get baptized, but now the Dad has full custody. She is really keen and loves the things that we teach so it has been a blast!! Then we have a young Samoan man that is also set for September. We taught him 3 times and set him that 3rd time. after that lesson we left him a plan of salvation pamphlet that he studied hard out, and the question he asked was this, "Will Satan be able to tempt those that are in spirit paradise after they die"? Pretty deep eh? He is just incredible unfortunately he was unable to make it to church since he was sick, he dances for a dinner show for some Poly restaurant, and they had a performance outside in the rain, and he got sick so that was stink! We truly have been blessed by our Heavenly father as we seek out his children where ever they may be! As for the zone we had 11 baptisms go through this week to put us at a month total of 24 which beats the old Zone best of 22, and we still have this weekend to count for August. We have 11 more set throughout the zone, but have heaps of work to do. It is super humbling to know that as we keep our covenants that we are blessed beyond our comprehension!! There has never been a zone in N.Z.A.M. that has ever done more than 29 yes we know it is not about the numbers, but it is about progression and we are ready do take the work to the next level!!! Each number has a name and a story and it is humbling to see how much God cares about each and everyone of his children!!!

Well that is my update for the week things are good busy, but good. I am thankful to be able to serve full time as a representative of Christ, and to help others be able to make it back to Heaven with their families. I love all of you and can not do this great work with out your support please continue to pray for those that we teach and for missionary opportunities of your own!! This is his work, and best case scenario I am just an Instrument in his hands. Love you all!!! Keep up all the good work!!

What a week!!!

No clever subject titles this week just kept it basic, but our week was anything but basic that is for sure. Right now as a zone we have accomplished 13 for the month of August with 17 more set for the month and an additional 8 sets that we hope to set for this month. Our Zone has truly taken off, but the best part is how humble everyone is staying, we definitely know that it is not by our power that these miracles are wrought, but definitely by the power of God!!! No Zone in the mission has ever done over 28 so we are working ever hard to help the work of the Lord to progress!! My favorite part is that each number has a name, face, and story that makes them unique and special to us and to our Father in Heaven. In studies one of the Elders shared a scripture in Mosiah 27: 25 & 26, in those verses it teaches us that we must be cleansed of our sins through baptism to return to live with God, but the part I like is that it, being the Gospel of Christ, must go to all nations and people. What a blessing it is to be apart of helping that scripture come to pass!!! Each time I see someones life changes it helps me to change even more so that I may have the blessings that God is so ready to give all of his children!!!

When I first came in to the area one of my converts sent me to her mother's house to re-activate her! Morehu Body is the mothers name. Probably the easiest reactivation ever, one visit and she was back to church!!! Since that time we go over weekly for a wonderful meal that her husband, Fred, always cooks for us. He is a mean cook!!! We usually leave with a spiritual thought and close at that. Over the past 3 months Fred and I have gained a very strong relationship, and Morehu kept telling us to just teach him. He showed no signs of even being remotely keen, but we decided to give it ago. About 2 weeks ago Elder Larsen and I went and literally laid it on the line with him. He said about half way through the lesson, "So what you are saying is that you are right, all of my beliefs are wrong." Some missionaries may dance around the subject and say well not wrong just not fully correct. NOT Elder Stucki!!! We told him straight up that yes that is correct and that he needed to learn about the Gospel and make the decision for himself!!! The lesson went FLOP he was a bit annoyed and ended it at that!!! We left thinking this guy is going nowhere, he is done for, and we felt bad for Morehu because she so badly wanted him to be apart of the church, and be an eternal family!!! About a week later we had a call telling us that Fred was ready for baptism, needless to say we didn't believe it really, but decided to follow up with it. We went back this past Friday and sure enough, a mighty change of heart. The spirit had worked on him over that week and a bit, and other members had been over there to see him and soften his heart. We taught about Faith, Repentance, and baptism and told him this is what he needs to do. He accepted, and is planning on being baptized on September the 11th. His only concern was that he doesn't have white pants haha, we laughed and said Fred we will work out the pants haha. He then asked well what about you, I said what about me. He said what if you leave the area, he was aware that transfers were coming up, but they were the day before on Thursday, by the way my companion and I are both staying, and he said are you leaving. We told him the good news and he looked at me and said good I was hoping that you would take me to the end, you are the one that came first, and asked me to listen, and I want you to see me through. That in and of itself was an answer to my prayers. I actually was hoping to leave the area, but Heavenly Father had other plans for me. I am grateful that I now have a purpose in the next six weeks, and his name is Fred!!! Funny too because that was like my favorite name as a kid I named everything Fred one thing that I can remember is a bird that Grandma Stucki and I nursed back to health or death can't remember which?!? So I definitely stand as a witness that miracles do happens and peoples hearts can be softened!!! I truly do love this work. I love watching people make life changing decisions and come closer to our Father in Heaven!!! The past few weeks have been a huge roller coaster, but I know that because of our diligent service, and staying the coarse of obedience and consecration we have been blessed beyond measure!!! I know more now than ever that were are merely instruments in the hands of God. We do nothing, but allow him to do his work, and that is all that I desire, to just simply be an instrument in saving souls!!!

I love you all and request the prayers of everyone for the many souls that we are striving to save this month within our Zone and within our mission. This truly is a mission of Miracles and we are doing our best to hearken to the counsel of a Prophet, To Save Souls Monthly!!! I love you all and am thankful each day for the blessings that I have been given. Each of you is a blessing and I for sure would not be the same Elder Stucki with out all of yous!!! I LOVE YOUS ALL!!!


1 Hospital 2 Surgeries 3 Pairs of Underwear 4 meal appointments 5 bagillion Nurses/Doctors 6 baptisms 7 Days

Sometimes I feel that the best part of my Emails is just the subject line. I can only imagine some of the reactions people would get if that is the only information that was given. It would leave so much room for Interpretation. Much like the Bible with out having a Prophet on the earth today the story could completely get blown out of Proportion!!! So thankfully for all of you I will tell the complete story. First and formost I am healthy and just fine!!! So last Monday after emails we got a call saying that Elder Filimaua (Filley-mo-uh) was in dire pain and the doctor wanted him to North Shore Hospital straight away for surgery. He was diagnosed with Appendicitis in which his Appendix had burst, and his pain level was through the roof to say the least. We rushed him over about a 30-45 min. drive and checked him into the hospital. Unfortunately the place was packed and it took ages to finally get him into surgery. My comp and his comp came back to our side of the zone since they had 6 people set for baptism in that week so we had to double manage both areas which was a task and I stayed over with Filimaua in hospital. During the first 5 nights I had the missionaries that serve near the hospital come and pick me up at night since visiting hours are only between 2-8, but the cool thing is that we are ministers of Religion so we could come and go 24/7 no questions asked just not to sleep there. So between myself and the other 2 Elders that live near hospital we were with him all day pretty much. Which was good, he also had an auntie come and see him and Pres and Sister Porter were over there 2 times a day. He ended up just having the "scope Surgery with just a small incision first, but then the doctors thought they may have cut something that they were not supposed to, and they cut him right open from the lower part of the rib cage to belly button so there are the 2 surgeries. As for the 3 pairs of underwear the story is like this. Since it was Monday when I came into the hospital I hadn't done my washing yet for the week, and I had no time to grab ANYTHING before we went to take him in the first place. So I literally only went with the clothes on my back! Fortunately, I like the apostles of Jesus Christ sought first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness and everything else was added unto me. After three days of the same garments Elder Smith was like bro. just wear mine, all goods haha. Elder Filimaua was of course in lots of pain and on all sorts of medicine and things, but after the Mission wide fast on Sunday he no longer needed the Morphine pump, no longer had a fever, could sit up and walk down the hall with little or no help it was incredible to see!!! I mentioned the 4 feeds because the two Elders that I stayed with are both bigger than me, one from Samoa, and the other from New Zealand so together we could put down some food, oh and by the way they are in the Chinese program so it is hilarious to watch these grown men approach these tiny Chinese people and just start speaking so so cool!! One thing I know for sure now is that the English program was just right for me!!! I am so lost when they study or teach it is not even funny. Luckily they also cover an English ward so we had a few English lessons! 5 bagillion Nurses and Doctors yes that is a number that just simply means heaps and heaps!!! The saddest part of the week came of Saturday when we, Elder Smith, Elder Tito, and I were with Elder Filimaua, and the man across the room, that was talking to us all week, and we made friends with passed away!! He was only 37 and was in for similar things as our missionary! He went to the shower on his own doing what we thought was very well meaning he looked healthy, then came back and sat on his bed, the curtain was closed and I heard him puke so I peaked my head in and asked if he needed some help, and he said all good, I just rang for the nurse. The nurse came in cleaned him up and everything seemed to be ok. About 5 minutes later his Uncle came to visit him and then the next thing we knew his uncle said oh man he need help and ran to get the nurse and we pushed the button for help and they took what seemed like ages to get in there. When they finally came everyone was rushing and giving orders and the emergency team was called up, and all the patients in the room were escorted out. On my way out I just caught a glimpse of him that I don't want to talk about, but I can still see it playing in my mind. They worked on him (CPR/Shock pads) for about 30-45 minutes before he was pronounced dead. Later we found out that the cause of death was blood clot that must have went to his heart. It really gave us all a fright so we made sure that our missionary was up and walking often, and the nurses gave him the blood thinner to make sure that didn't happen to him!!! It was awful to see the family of this man come in and be understandably devastated! I am so thankful for my knowledge of God's plan for all of his children and the knowledge that I have of the after life!!! What a week it has been, thankfully God blessed all 6 of those investigators of the other Elders to be baptized this week!!! I got to sleep in the Hospital on Saturday night since Elder Filimaua and his Auntie were so shaken up from the passing of that man and worried, so when Sister Richardson from my ward came to visit me and bring us some goodies she made a call to her Auntie who is on the board of the Hospital and got me Permission to stay the night. Funny part of that is when Filimaua's Auntie was explaining to Sister Porter that I was going to stay, I was not there to correct her, she said we are grateful that his girlfriend got him permission to stay the night haha. President called and was like what is this about a girlfriend I hear haha. Thankfully I helped him to understand that she is a 47 year old woman that is married and we are teaching her son haha. President just laughed!!! Needless to say my sleeping over the past 7 days has been minimal!! After this past week of being with him in hospital (weird that in this country you don't go to THE hospital just go to Hospital not like when we talk....I donno?) I am so confused as to why so many people are for the Government payed health care system. Indeed many pros being it is "FREE", everyone has the opportunity to be healed, and that's about it!! Verse the cons of no doctor cares about their work, the place is packed to the brim, and the quality of everything is just very poor. Makes me wonder what people see in the plan but oh well!!! So all in all the week was a blur, and Elder Filimaua is doing very good and we are hoping to have him out by Tuesday! I have a strengthened Testimony of the Healing Power of the Priesthood, of fasting, of prayer, and of God being mindfull of all of his Children. Things may get tough and challenging, but God never gives us more than we can handle!!! The work is good, and I am glad to be out of the hospital thanks for all the support that you all offer me day in and day out!! Hope you all have a great week and know that you are loved from a Kiwi Missionary trapped in a white boy body haha. Love ya all!!!

Elder Matthew Lee Stucki N.Z.A.M.

Tooth Fairy!!!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Due to the subject let me reassure you mom that my teeth are all good, well at least I still have them all and I brush and floss all the time or in Kiwi talk heaps lots of ages!!! So the subject comes from my testimony on Sunday at church. I was bearing testimony on the difference of truth and belief. Truth is an Eternal Principle, something that will never change, something like I love food or Jesus Christ is our Savior never changing. Beliefs come and go with age, wisdom, knowledge, and all sorts of things. I gave the example over the pulpit of the tooth fairy then as saying the sentence realized my audience and thank goodness for the talent of being quick on my feet and covering up, very well might I add, that the tooth fairy is just a belief. The congregation laughed and the kids were puzzled and my comp and I have been laughing ever since!!! Elder Stucki the dream killer hahah. It was just to funny! We had quite a good week just working very hard at solidifying people for their baptisms and coming to church and everything in between. We had a conference call this morning with all the ZL's and President Porter, and he said now Elder I don't know about you, but some days I wake up and have nothing left or go to bed and wonder how I can do it all over again. He said now I know none of you have ever felt that way, we all laughed because most of us were just wondering that. Questions like how can we continue to progress as a mission or in our personal life. How can we find another 144 people that want to be baptized or more for August as we had in July. Plain and simple we are just tired or exhausted is more like it!!! I have a testimony that as we do what is required we will always find the strength to last another day or week or ___ Months haha. A huge pick me up for my companion and I was last night at dinner. We had a MEXICAN food which never happens. One of the recently married couples in our ward the wife is from Arizona and she made enchiladas. It was so nice to have that like a taste of home it was also a big treat to hear and American girls accent haha. Her husband is a Kiwi, but they plan on moving back to the states at the end of the year. She told us "man it is so good to have American humor in the home", but I don't know where that came from I don't know how to make others laugh . So ya it was really good and for the first time in my entire mission they brought up the topic of how they can do missionary work we were really thrown off, because usually member work is like pulling teeth. Unfortunately the work in the ward they are in is really slow. They live in our "rich" or what we like to call prideful area, but we are really going to work hard this week to find some one for them to work with or something, because we can't waste this perfect opening to have them help us.

Things are going well with our investigators, we are staying very busy with the Zone and working on their finishing skills. This zone has always had a problem with getting people set for baptism and then falling through so we must build our missionaries capabilities, by helping them recognize the spirit and to teach to the needs not just what is next on the list of lessons. We are going in to august strong, but like I said last week we will have lots of distractions from the opening of the new MTC. We have got so much work to do, but thankfully being busy means the time flies. I swear I was just here emailing you. My come and I have the joke that we tell every Monday night just before we go back out to teach. We just say sweet only 7 days left til P-day, then look at each other and say that will never come then Sunday night comes and we laugh and say remember last week when we thought this day would never come. Yes lame joke, but if you have served a mission you would understand haha. Not to much planned today just some things we have to get done for the zone like mail and delivering supplies, I miss the days of Dargaville when we would go and hike and see stuff, but right now I will serve God, and have plenty of time to see everything when I come back and am not on a schedule. Well family that's about it for updates I have made a goal this week to write down a few things each day that I can share with you through out the week, so next week when I get here I can actually have something to write about, but its hard I never remember what I have and have not told you so forgive me, but my only excuse is I am a missionary and that is a pretty good one!!! All my love and prayers from this tiny country in the Pacific!!! Ofa Atu eh?