Monday, August 1, 2016

My Testimony.

Kia ora everyone,

I'm almost there...1 more week! It feels so weird! I'm nervous, excited, happy, devastated, pumped, freaking out, sad, and confused all at the same time! I think I have a reason for each one of those as well! Today I was asked by my sweet mother to bear my testimony. So being obedient (of course),  I thought I might as well! :) 

So, my mission has changed my life. It's as easy as that! It was easily the hardest thing I've ever done, but also the most rewarding. 

I learned a lot on my mission. Like how to do the dishes without a dishwasher (I thought people only did that in the 1500's,) and how to crack open a sea urchin with 2 spoons then suck out the middle. (people call that "food" here in NZ, I call it "disgusting.") But the most amazing part about my mission was, no doubt, looking back and seeing how my testimony has grown over the past two years. It's been truly incredible! I thought I was perfectly fine back home... I thought my testimony was solid! But I quickly realized that it needed work, and now it's greater than I ever imagined, and it can only get better from here! 

So whanau back home, I know that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. I know that he suffered and died for each and every one of us. It brings me sorrow knowing that I caused him so much pain, but I am truly grateful for everything that He went through for me! I know He atoned for, not only our sins, but every pain, heartache, disappointment, and negativity that we'll ever experience! He did that so He could know perfectly how to help us, and I know that he is always ready and willing to do so. I love Him!

I know that Joseph Smith was/is a prophet of God. I know that he saw Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ as he was praying to know the truth. He translated the Book of Mormon by the power of God! I love the Book of Mormon! I've read it 5 times now and I've loved it more and more each time! I know that it is true. I know it! 

I know that the Church of Jesus Christ is true. The Church is wonderful. I know that the Gospel of Jesus Christ, when applied in our lives, can help us return to live with our Father in Heaven again someday. I know that the Plan of Salvation was designed to bring happiness to our lives. We all have the opportunity to partake of these wonderful blessings if we are obedient! 

So, I guess on a more personal level... my testimony of personal revelation has been strengthened. Conversion and personal revelation will always be an ongoing process, but I feel like I'm heading down the right path. I have received many feelings/thoughts these last few years that I know are from God! The spirit testified to me that the apostles and prophets are true, I have learned of things that I need to do when I return home, my eyes have been opened to understand the scriptures more fully! These are only a few of my experiences, but I have many more, and I will cherish them forever! 

In a few short paragraphs, there is my shortened version of my testimony! I hope you feel as well, as you read this, that these things of which I have spoken are true! 

I love you all! I can't wait to see you next week! I am so excited (and every other emotion that I mentioned before!) 

Elder Butler 


Cleaning the church after a baptism. 

Sunday, July 24, 2016

"Light Refreshments"

This is Elder Butler......

Great week! (like usual)

Thank you for all the emails this week! You went to Sister Chudleigh's homecoming? So lucky! She's wonderful! I'm so jealous that you got to see the whole flippin' crew...the Taylors, the Rudds, the Thalmans. MAN...flippin' jealous!

Also--mean lunch with Sister Lifferth? (I think her name is Hanna, but she's still in the missionary zone, so I'll call her Sister Lifferth!) ;) 

I've got nothing but trunky emails lately. Haha, I'm shocked that people actually want me home. I mean, mother you will obviously not be the "ping pong champion" any longer. Dad, the pantry will be empty, and the term "left overs" will not exist anymore. Jaycee and Baylee, I'm still going to tackle the crap out of you both, and tickle you to death! So don't be too excited! ;) I still have ages though, but I'm doing just fine! (A little nervous though!)

So this week we went to a few baptisms. They were really solid! We got permission to leave the zone and take one of our elders to a baptism where he could baptize his former investigator. It was awesome--especially because it was in the Samoan ward. So there was HEAPS of food! Man, Samoans know how it's done when it comes to "light refreshments." I'm pretty sure they don't even understand what that means. After a baptism, the person conducting should say, "Thank you all for coming to the baptism. After the closing prayer, we will meet in the cultural hall for a 9 course meal where we will all eat until we've hit 'throw up point'... thank you again for coming."  I hope you get to experience this for yourself someday so you know what I'm talking about! ;) 

We tracted out two mean families these last few weeks! One is a South African family, and the other is a Maori family! They're both so nice, so hopefully we can help them in the next few weeks so I can tell you more stories! :) 

Well, I have a bit more, but it's not important. So I'm done typing for today, unless you want to email me back and forth...all good! But I love you all heaps! Keep being wonderful! 

The gospel is true!
Elder Butler 

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Cool Little Miracles and Heaps of Gifts

Kia ora whanau!

What a hard week! Transfers is always great and sad at the same time! Especially because I know that I probably won't see these fellas again. The hardest thing was when Elder Muli left. He's been our next-door neighbor since day one of Kura! He gave me a sweet Tauvala when he left which is something I've wanted for a while! It was so cool! Love that fella!

This transfer is weird. I wasn't all that pumped for it because I knew I would be gone in a few weeks anyways. But Elder Johnson has now been named my longest companion throughout my whole mission. We'll be together for 4 months, and it's been flippin' solid! I love the bro, and I'm glad he's killing me off! He's a Zone Leader now as well, so I'm not alone in the calling! ;) #relief

We played another mean game of footie at the park on Monday. It was a mean P-Day to finish the transfer off with! We're playing some volley today as well! :)

The work lately has been a bit difficult. Currently we're going through all the former investigators and trying to see if any of them still live there, and are still keen. We've gone through heaps, and haven't found much success. But the other day we had a pretty mean experience. We were walking in the POURING rain, and we saw this lady about 200 ft. ahead of us. We wanted to talk to her, but she was walking too fast, and not very many people like to stop and talk to us in the rain. Then, the heavens literally started dumping, so she hid underneath a tree. It was the perfect opportunity to talk to her, so we rushed over and hid as well. We talked to her for a bit and she was decently keen. Literally the second we finished writing down her details and said our goodbyes, the rain completely stopped and the sun came out. It all happened so fast. It was a cool little miracle! The rain allowed us to talk to her! :) 

We had a funny experience a couple days ago. We were walking down the street and saw this lady who waved at us. So whenever that happens, you immediately go talk to them! ;) We talked to her for a bit, then her husband came out. Long story short.. they were flippin' crazy! Haha, they were from South Africa (obviously crazy) and they talked for EVER! Then she went inside and brought us a gift. It was a little box with heaps of scriptures inside. Then the husband said something to her and she ran back inside and literally brought out every Christian thing in her house for us as gifts! Ha it was hilarious! I have pics, so I'll show you! ;) 

That's about it! I'm doing just fine! I've learned heaps the last few weeks! It's great because I'll study for a little while, then feel like I know heaps, then I'll think of something else to study and realize that I have a ton that I don't know, which allows for more study! It's great! Right now I'm focusing on the Tribe of Judah. I thought I'd study it a bit to realize why I'm from that specific tribe! So hopefully I get some sweet info!

So yah...that's all! I love you heaps! Talk to ya'll next week!

Elder Butler 

SUMO!!! This is me getting wrecked!! :/
So the SUMO mat is right behind me, but after Bauder wrecked me.. He hobbled over to the stairs and body slammed me off the stage! :) It was so much fun!  

Another pair of kicks down!

Lunch with the bros

Me and the Bro, Muli!

Bus station

Okay.. my face looks ridiculous. I couldn't see! :/ But here's all the stuff that South African lady gave us! ;) 

Monday, July 11, 2016

Best/Worst of Times...The Church is Still True

Kia ora whanau!

Well, I don't have too much to say this week. 

Starting off though--P Day. Oh my goodness...funniest P Day ever! We had a waffle party and a member brought sumo wrestler suits. It was absolutely hilarious, but I got wrecked every time! My socks were way too slippery (good excuse) and I would slip and fall, then just get body slammed by my opponent! It was a great time though. Heaps of people from the zone said it was the best/funniest P day they've ever had! **note from Robin: I will post these pics next week. :) 

We had one of the worst days of all time though a couple days ago. We had heaps of stupid disobedience all at once that we had to deal with. We literally didn't work the whole entire day. We had to go and interview missionaries close and far away, and we didn't get back until about 7pm. We were so emotionally drained, we just went to a member in our bishopric and he cheered us up! It was very, very sad and hard! :( Especially when you love these missionaries a lot, and you really have to get into them and rip them apart! It's just not me, you know? 

Other than that, we had 2 baptisms. It was a beautiful service! Elder Johnson's camera got a virus, and it isn't allowing us to send anything, so it's really bumming me out! :/ But it was a mean as baptism! 

We also had the weirdest Sabbath day of all time. There were so many false/weird things taught during class. It was hilarious! Finally, Elder Johnson and I just had to get up and "go to the bathroom." The struggle is real on the's always nerve racking bringing investigators to church ESPECIALLY during Fast and Testimony meeting. Oh my dear goodness, testimony meeting is the worst. I shake with fear the whole time. When someone starts walking up to the pulpit, I'm thinking/praying in my mind, "Please don't say something stupid, please don't say something stupid!" Our poor investigators are wondering why everyone goes up to the pulpit and just starts bawling! :) It's flippin' hilarious.. but bad at the same time. Luckily, the church is still true! ;)

Well...Hanna killed her talk! It was awesome! Thank you for sending it to me, and I'm glad you guys got to go! 

I miss you heaps! I hit my 1 month left mark a couple days ago...that's weird. But all good...I'm still pushing along just fine! 

So yah...that's all! Love you heaps!
Elder Butler 


Penguins out! 

The Bros! 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Hokimate :)

Kia ora everyone!

I shouldn't tell you that I've gotten trunkier in the last 5 minutes, but I have! ;) The mish life is flippin' mean as, but honestly, I can't even remember my life back home almost. I feel like I've been in New Zealand my whole entire life, and knocking doors is the only thing I've ever known! I know that sounds ridiculous, but it's true. I was telling Elder Johnson about some of my stories from back home with my friends, and I couldn't even remember what their last names were! What the flip?! :/ Oh well... It's all good though! 

Alright, trunkiness is gone... 

Okay... flippin' Hanna got home! My goodness! Also President & Sister Rudd, Elder Zesiger, Elder Tibbitts, and heaps more! MAN!!!!! Okay... NOW my trunkiness is over! 

So, this week was pretty solid! We had a pretty cool experience with a lady named Hokimate (Ho key ma tay). We were tracting the other week when we found her. She wasn't very nice to us in the beginning, so we weren't too keen on returning. But, we went back to her house a few days later, and she was the same. So a week went by and we were in the area, and we decided to stop by again...who knows why? This time, she was completely different. She was a less active for about 40 years, and she wasn't too excited when she saw us coming over, but then she said she felt the spirit for the first time in 40 years when we walked through her gate. So it must have been time for her to start making her way back. It was a wonderful thing to hear! We continued to visit her throughout this week, and she loves us. We finally shared a message with her, and she's working on coming back to church! We'll get her there!

 Also, we've been playing 5x5 ball on Friday nights at the Rec center for our 8:00 finding activity. It's mean as. And we've been balling with this fella named Jordan. We've gained a really solid relationship with all of those fellas because we have been playing really well! :) But one day, we went and knocked on Hokimate's door, and Jordan answered. It's her flippin' son! So we found a mean part-member family!

Also during ball, I became good mates with a North-African fella. He's a Muslim, but he's nice as. He said to me, "Man, I really respect what you guys do. These fella's have heaps of good things to say about you as well!" He was nice as. He just moved here from Denmark, so he's the flippin' man. Good baller as well! 

So we have a new Mission President now. I haven't even met him yet. But I have an interview with him tomorrow, so that should be sweet! He's from AUS, so he has to be a bit weird! ;) I'm going to miss President and Sister Rudd though, they were the flippin' bomb! I love them so much! 

We're having a 4th of July waffle party today. That should be pretty solid.. all thanks to the FACs (Fun activities coordinators) aka Elder Butler & Elder Johnson. Elder Bauder was the FAC for a while but we had to release him because he wasn't magnifying his calling, but all good! ;) Also, one of the Stake Leaders is bringing over the massive SUMO suits for us to fight each other with.. It should be flippin' solid! ;)

Alright.. That's about it. I can't remember much more because I forgot to write down my "email moments" throughout the week. :/ But I hope you're satisfied with this email! ;) 

I love you all heaps! 

Elder Butler 

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Well, poo...

Hello, Hello!!!

That was honestly one of the meanest weeks of all time! It was just so good! 

Let me start out by telling you a wonderful story. We live next door to the Tongan elders, and one night, Elder Finau came over when we were in bed because he needed to grab something. So we just chilled in bed while he talked to us for a bit at the door. Then he turned off the light and said goodbye, and left (we thought). About 5 minutes later the lights turned on and we heard this horrific scream. Scared the living crap out of us.... and sadly for Johnson, it literally scared the crap out of him! Haha the fella pooped his pants on accident because he was so scared! It was absolutely hilarious! So that was my funny moment of the week! ;)

The protocols were taken away a couple of weeks ago. So we don't have as many rules, as of right now. So we've been jamming to Disney music. Talk about trunkiness... "Can... you feel... the love tonight?!" It's been pretty sweet though! ;)

We had the greatest Sunday of all time yesterday. So many investigators came to church! And I was the final speaker. It went very well! Our investigators talked to us after and said they loved church! Elder Johnson and I were so happy! It was just a wonderful day, and everything went perfectly as planned! 

The Scanlan's! Remember Lakopo Scanlan? I baptized him in Manurewa. Well, they took me and Elder Johnson out to lunch the other day! It was so amazing to see them! They're still doing so well, and they're planning out their date for the temple! They are such an amazing family!

We did service for our Bishop this week. He's moving, sadly. I flippin' love our bishop! He's the absolute man! But it was heaps of fun. He gave me HEAPS of encouragement and info about becoming a doctor! He's so sweet!

We met the nicest family of all time the other day. They're from Zimbabwe. We're giving them a Book of Mormon in the Shona language. They're so wonderful! But on the way to their house, Elder Johnson stepped right in a massive dog poo. So I started cracking up! I was dying.... and all of the sudden I looked down on my jacket, and a bird pooped on me! So you could say that it was a pretty crappy day...but it was actually all good! ;) (sorry for all the poo stories this week!) :)

That's about it for now. We're working hard as! We're having heaps of success. I love the people here. I love the ward. I love my companion. I love our zone. Everything's just going great!

I love you guys heaps!
Elder Butler  

The Scanlan's after lunch!! :) 

The fellas!! Zesiger and Tibbitts going home on Thursday! I love these fellas heaps! They've been with us the past few days, and I'm gonna miss them! Luckily we all stay pretty close though!

My cuzzie!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Pops...My Main Bro!

Kia ora!!!!!

Mean week. 

This week we had Zone Conferences with President and Sister Rudd. I love them heaps! It was hard to say goodbye, but let's be honest... I'll see them again in a month and 1/2. So it wasn't too depressing. But they have truly played a huge part in changing my life. Every time I listen to President Rudd, the Spirit is always unbelievable! I'm so glad he was my mission president for the majority of my mission! 

Last Monday we went to the Waiuku beach and played 6x6 football with the bros. It was flippin' mean as! All the sisters came as well, so it was a nice party! We were tied up at 6 touchdowns apiece, and we were playing to 7... so I walked over to line up, looked down, and there was a pool of blood around my foot! So the bros ran me over to the ocean water to clean it up. (Not the best feeling of all time!) I think I sliced it on a shell or something and it bled HEAPS!  I had to steal Elder Danhof's sock and tie my foot to make it stop bleeding. Then we got back to the flat and called Doctor Main (our bishop). So long story short, I ended up at the doctor's office for most of the night, for a little tiny cut on my foot. :/ But it was totally worth it...mean game of footie!

Honestly fam... I don't have much to tell you this week! Just know that I'm doing fine. I have heaps of pics though, and I'll talk about them. I'm excited to come home, but not too trunky yet. Hopefully I don't get trunky ever though...but all good! My companion and I get along great still. I'm hoping they'll let him kill me off. We're having success. The members seem to love us. We play ball all the time!! We work hard, and we're life's all good! 

Also.. Pops.. my main bro! It's not Father's day here in NZ, but I heard that it is in America! So happy flippin' Father's Day my friend! You're the absolute man! I love you heaps and hope you have a great day! Because of your example, I have been able to serve a long and hard mission, and heaps of lives have been blessed! I owe that success to you dad (and mama of course!) ;) So thank you so much!

I love you all heaps!

Elder Butler 

We made the bros some steak and egg burritos the other day! Mean... 

Me and the Bros. Johnson and Christensen 

Zone conference :)

We made another Title of Liberty, this time with the Gregory family. This picture is funny because we took 3 of them. And in every single picture, someone different isn't smiling. So I'm sending the one that I remembered to smile in...but sadly Alan and Faasolo forgot!! ;) 

Footie on the beach

This is my little cut that caused me so much grief!! It was a flippin' bleeder!! :/

Elder Butler wins the prize for the biggest burger. 🍔

Elder B can EAT!