Monday, August 29, 2016

My first Rainstorm

Hey sorry not a lot of time!!!

Sad news this week. We've discovered that our fourth apartmate has a tumor on a nerve in his spine, so he is actually about to head home to get surgery. We're going to Borobusur today - an ancient temple that is really cool, before he leaves. 

So Elder Boenari, Sukarlis and I will become a trio. Another Comp for me. I've had so many already if you count the MTC haha.

I had a great week but sometimes a little rough because every day I am seeing more clearly and in greater number my weaknesses and that's hard for me. But I'm going to work so hard to try to fix them!! I know through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, I can!!!! I can be very prideful, but I'm trying to just love my comps and the people and make my work solely about the Glory of God. No one came to church this week, that was sad, because two families seemed so sure they would come!! We have some cool investigators and we made some good contacts.

Got stuck in a rainstorm so we were hiding out in this store Mallish area. Pretty much August is party month in Indonesia, so there was a huge parade yesterday, so tons of people were hiding out with us. Tried to talk to as many as possible!! That was good!!! Life is just really awesome for me!!!!

Also funny, one of the daughters at a home we visited kind of reluctant to join us and when she came down her mom straight up said "oh yeah she has a big zit on her nose", while she was in the room. Haha so funny, so different. I was just thinking about what if Mom said that about Steph or Kendra in front of two boys (though missionaries). I love you!! I love hearing about your lives!!!

I'll try to answer all questions!! BTW I did get the SteriPods for my toothbrush!!

I met Elder Evans! He was great! I learned a lot about Faith and obedience and always asking for referrals!! Also super fun to meet a bunch of the missionaries here!! We drove with Elder and Sister Jeffrey about two hours each way! Kind of a bummer because you can't contact anyone with six missionaries, but it was good and relaxing too!!

Food is great!! Very different!! But great! I don't really know how to describe it... lots of rice, lots of soups. Some of it is REALLY spicy and I don't think I've even scraped the surface of that one. But when I get back I will be able to destroy all of you in Spiciness contests!! And I really haven't had any stomach problems at all! That’s Great!!! I usually get enough - I feel like I'm getting fat I hope not> A lot of people feed us. Every Tuesday and Friday we visit part member families and they always feed us- a lot. So it's Mardi Gras every week in Magelang!! Haha!! We almost always take our shoes off. BTW the shoes have really worked well so far.

Language is always hard, but I think it's improving. Listening and learning from listening is really hard. But it is definitely improving!! Language comp... depends on the person. Elder Boenari and Elder Sukarlis, maybe 80% but some other people, a nice 20% ... it's coming!!

Mom, don't be silly, of course I don't carry Toilet paper! Actually sorry, maybe I'll explain more because it IS a big part of my life. Most places have a hose that you can use to clean haha. Don't worry I wash and sanitize my hands thoroughly!! The Lord is definitely watching over me- I haven't really been sick yet!

As for letters, no. I'm thinking that they will be taking a little longer than a week.

This gospel is true and will bless all people and all nations and that's why I'm here so don't worry about me!!!!
Love you!! Send more later!
Elder Brown

Hey Mom tell Erica I loved hearing from her and tell her to send her address because I would love to write her back!!!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Top of the Needle in Tidar Indonesia

Hello Everyone,

Yeah, the bathroom is really dirty!! Actually to start off P-day today, I scrubbed the whole floor with a little hand brush!! That took a while, but I was grateful I did. I also scrubbed the mold off the wall because I remember a certain Mom telling me that it could make you sick! Thanks Mom. And all the black stuff on the floor next to the toilet... I'm not actually sure what that is... but it's not plain old dirt because it wouldn't come off when I scrubbed! And yeah, there's no water temperature control... just cold ha-ha!!

Didn't have to buy my bike! and I do have a helmet and we're ordering a reflective jacket like Drew's! So I should have one soon. I would love to hear any advice from any of you on how best to do the work - I need all the help I can get.

Elder Boenari and I are doing better with contacting - We've been going to the RTs (which are like neighborhood leaders... they know everybody in the neighborhood and can help you with things and stuff [wow, that was REALLy specific - things and stuff ha-ha]). So you go to them and basically ask if there are any Christians in the neighborhood (or you ask- is there anyone that also goes to church?) and then we are allowed to knock on their doors once we have a referral from the RT. That has been somewhat fruitful but also we've met some very interesting people ha-ha.

 Oh yeah and in Indonesia, so many people smoke, it's ridiculous. But soon, we'll help them all see the blessings of having faith and choosing not to smoke! Really, the thing that is hard for me is that I feel like I waste a lot of time that could either be used for contacting or some other good purpose... I am a firm believer in the "Talk to Everyone" approach! 
Tidar was great, I'll send some pictures! Elder Drew climbed The Needle" on top of Tidar ~ Yeah I climbed too – Sorry Mom.

 So It's about 3 dollars to send a letter from here to the US. So Mom, I was thinking about maybe sending a lot of letters in one envelope to you so you can send them all out to other people. how expensive is it to send a letter stateside?? Just let me know if that is a good idea!

The Sorensons will be amazing at that calling!! Wahoo!!

I love the people here so much and I have been humbled as I realize how much I can learn from them. There is a sister here - who is recently baptized and also one daughter is baptized and one has a date, but we only just met her husband. He is really an awesome guy! But the thing is, her faith is incredible!! She has such a surety that God is talking care of her and her family. It has inspired me to gain a greater faith. I just can't wait to see the miracles in her life with that kind of faith.

Our other friends did not make it to church... sadly. But they will come next week I am sure!
View from the church
But we had some less actives come and some investigators and it was so great, especially in Priesthood meeting with 16 of us pretty cramped in a small room!!! We'll be moving buildings in October, I think.

The Jeffreys are really great - they do so much for us!!

I have such a testimony of this work!! Everyone deserves the happiness and joy that the gospel brings!!! It's hard because so many people are Muslim, but I just can't help but think they also deserve the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ and the happiness it brings. I really have been gaining a testimony this week of the power of faith and the miracles it can bring!!

Anyways, I'll probably send more, but everything here is just super great!!!!
Learning an Indonesian Dance
Indonesian Flowers I collected
We've got a mission tour with Elder and Sister Evans this week (general authorities - Asia area I believe) and then we'll have Zone meeting next week I think!!

I’ve been collecting flowers and my name tag with the beautiful family.  We had a ward party for independence day and I danced.

I love you.


Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Made it to Magelang

Hello Everyone!!!

It is SO SO good to hear from all of you!!

SO I am in Magelang!! And it actually hasn't rained as much as all of you seem to think!! Magelang is great! It's the smallest city in the mission I think, but it's still super crowded!! Bikes were a little scary at first, but I'm quickly getting used to that!!

I see you threw out my shoes... I'm still a little mad ;)
Those peaches just look great!! I haven't found where to by fruit here like I want to...

All Indonesians are Small! Elder Boenari is probably 5'2" and Elder Sukarlis(Elder Drew's comp) is probably only 5'.

There are a lot of bugs everywhere, but I 've really only had to kill one big spider so far. IT's not bad, after a day you don't notice. there are stray Kats everywhere!!! (Haha cats, in Indonesian K makes a ke sound, c che) And lots of little lizards in the houses!
The Bathroom is not bad, it's a porcelain hole in the ground haha and the shower is only buckets but I like it!

My last couple of days in Jakarta were great!! We did have our first Indonesian rain and neither Elder Scott nor I had brought an umbrella- we got soaked!!  But yeah, it was awesome!! And the shoes and the bag are holding up very well so far!! I've lined the bag with a plastic bag, but I think the leather does it's job well!! In Jakarta was awesome because we got to ride buses and contact a lot!!! I love contacting - even though it's hard. Especially when you can't really speak the language at all!! I loved it though!!

Magelang is great!! We have a small branch where about thirty regularly come to church.... A lot of people were gone last week though, so really small. I guess we do meet in an apartment Mom... but it's got one big room up top for sacrament and two class rooms downstairs. We have a linger longer afterward which is great!! I love the members - they are awesome!! Our investigators came to the last part of church, which was great! We really wanted them to come to Sacrament meeting though! They are great!! We rode 20 minutes or so to visit them last night! They have two little girls 5 and 3 who are both adorable and crazy! and one spent a good part of our visit last night trying to kiss me haha, but I didn't let her! It makes teaching a little hard! One parent wants to get baptised but one doesn't really want to commit... We had a good talk last night though. I'm starting to understand better everyday though, which is really great!! I need to work harder on actively studying the language... I love it though!

So Magelang is up in the mountains . WE have quite a few volcanoes close to us ( don't worrry. only aone is active) and it's pretty far away haha). We are  going to climb a small hill thingy in town called "tidar" today with Elder and sister Jeffrey(senior couple). So Magelang is what they call dingin(cold). I don't think it's cold haha but it actually is really nice!! I love it!!

We haven't contacted anyone since I've been here and Elder Boenari and I have made a goal to use our time better and try to contact more... it's a little hard from bikes! Elder Boenari (i don;t say the K) only has ten weeks or so left!  a little crazy!!

Someone asked last night why I was on a mission and I was very happy to answer!! I just want everyone to know that I have a burning conviction that the Message I am sharing with the people of Indonesia is absolutely true. I believe that the Gospel and church of Jesus Christ was literally restored to the Earth by God through his Prophet Joseph Smith. That in itself is so important to share - it is truly God's work. But for me personally, it has blessed my life and my family's life So much. We are who we are today because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!! And because I am doing my best to Follow Jesus Christ, I want to share this message of happiness, and peace and also salvation with the whole world. I have already grown to love the people of Indonesia! I want them all to be happy as I am!

i love you all!

Elder Brown

Monday, August 8, 2016

Touchdown Elder Trevor Brown in Indonesia

Hello Family!!!

I am in the Church in Jakarta right now emailing you!!! Wahooo!!! I think there are two buildings in Jakarta!! So I am not assigned to serve in Jakarta, but in Magelang. I think that's how you spell it!1 I'm really excited, because it is a smaller city, or maybe even not a city. You can check it out on Google Earth and know before I do!! But I am currently in Jakarts because I need a "Kitas" I think - it's like permission or permit to be somewhere not in the city of Jakarta! So all of us in our district are with temporary companions in Jakarta! Elder Scott and I are in a trio with Elder Pribawa, one of the Zone Leaders in the Jakarta zone. He speaks great English but it's a little hard because this companionship is super temporary so we haven't really planned nor communicated too much on daily plans. But he is great!! Also I love Elder Scott!! ANd my trainer in Magelang will be Elder K. Boenari who is the cousin of a really cool Elder named Elder D.Boenari (or very annoying at this moment!). Oh wait sorry I must be positive- I mean he is so SO great! (Joking, he rocks!)

So traveling was great! I was a little bit upset when I didn't really get to talk to you at all, but it's okay. Your voices are still beautiful! Glad to hear that everyone is so good! I might not be able to resp0nd to everyone. But travel was great- we made some contacts - our flight attendant to Tokyo was really cool and she seemed interested - we gave her a Restoration pamphlet because we didn't have an English Book of Mormon.

Yeah it was great. We went to bed at the mission home about 3:00 in the morning after eating some delicious fruit and we got to sleep in till 9:00. Super nice. We spent that day training- President Rowley is super awesome - he got right down to business! He is very committed to obedience and the White Handbook and he actually told us that we really won't be emailing people not in our family! But i will always love receiving letters from everyone! and you can still send the emails out to everyone!

Elder Trevor Scott Brown
Indonesia Jakarta Mission
Jalan Senopati 115
Kebayoran Baru
Jakarta 12190

So yeah the second night we spent at the apartment! We have nine people in a four person apartment! But the apartment is huge so it's not a big deal. It's awesome! It's been so fun!! Very hot though- luckily the bedroom has AC!!

Church was so great! We went to an English ward and an Indonesian ward- they were so awesome! I got to bear my testimony in both languages because it is fast and testimony meeting!! Great! I love the members- it was so fun to meet them  all!! I love talking and a couple people have told me that i speak well, but it is so hard to Understand the natives. THey don't usually speak loud and they speak so fast!!! It's gila(crazy)!! We got to teach a lesson to our investigator (or at least their investigator) and it was awesome! Elder Pribawa had me commit him to baptism and he accepted!!

Yeah so everything is really awesome!!! I'm trying to talk to as many people as possible! I got someones phone number today and a facebook contact!! It's so fun!

Jakarta is crazy!! It's huge! the traffic is super crazy! So many scooters!! It's hot and humid but not quite as bad as I expected! I love it!! There are so many scooters everywhere!! Lots of bugs. I don't think I've gotten a mosquito bite yet- that's good!! Yeah everything is so great!!

It's hard to contact and teach, but I know that this message will bless these people's lives so so much!!! I know that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true and I know that his church is truly on the Earth today! Kita punya nabi benar di bumi! Nama dia adalah Thomas S. Monson! Saya tahu Tahun memimpin President Monson dan melalui President Monson Allah memimpin kita! Gerja ini benar! Saya tahu itu membantu kita dan memberkati kehidupan kita! Saya tahu itu benar dan Allah mengasihi semua orang! juga, Jose[h Smith adalah nabi benar dan dia sebenarnya menerjemahkan Kitab Mormon melalui kuasa Allah. Buku itu adalah benar. Jika anda membaca Kitab Mormon, itu akan memberkati kehidupan anda.

Maybe you can google translate that Mommy!

“We truly have a prophet on the earth.  His name is Thomas S. Monson. I know that we are led by President Monson and through President Monson God leads us. This church is True.  I know it helps us and blesses our lives. And God loves everyone. Also, Joseph Smith is a true prophet and he actually translated the Book of Mormon by the power of God. That book is true.  If you read the Book of Mormon it will bless your life.”

love you all so much!! Sorry I failed to take good pictures
Love you!

Take care! 

Elder Brown

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

3 day delay - but on their way!

Hey Mommy and Daddy and all people!!

So yeah, I was sitting in the devotional Sunday Night and I was writing the date of the devotional in the book and I wrote "7/31/16" in it and I just kind of looked at it, feeling like something was wrong... then I realized, it was July, not August!! Which means it was not your anniversary this last Sunday haha. Man my time conception is less than up to par, sorry! But Happy Anniversary Month!

Yeah, so we are not yet in Indonesia. That is a litttle hard, but it's also good! I think there are many reasons that we may need to be here at the MTC still. I know that I for one still need a lot of preparation!! Regardless, I know that God has a plan for his district of Indonesian Elders! If we are still at the MTC, it is because we need to be at the MTC!! SO I'm not worried, just patiently trying to find what the Lord needs me to do, even if it's hard sometimes! I am just grateful that we are not being sent out to Visa wait!

Also yes, I am a little nervous for Indonesia, but SO SO excited!! I can't wait to get to Indonesia and meet my training companion and just talk to as many people as I possibly can!! I love this Gospel! I love this church! I am the person I am today because of Jesus Christ and his Atonement! The Gospel has blessed my life in so many ways- it helps me be happy, it helps me love my family, it helps me understand who I am and my purpose on this Earth! AS I have been here, I have grown to know with such a stronger conviction that Jesus Christ is my Savior and Redeemer and because of his Atonement, we can be made clean and made whole! I know that this is all God's plan, because HE LOVES US!! He loves us so much! Because I know this and I can continually see the ways in which the Gospel blesses my life, I have such a desire to share the Gospel. I want the whole world to know what I know and feel the same happiness and peace! THat is why I am so excited to go to INdonesia!! I am so excited to go to a new place and speak the language and learn the culture, but I am so much more excited for the chance to share the message of Jesus Christ and see that message change lives!

Mommy and Drew and Steph, thank you so much for the updates on the Reunion - it sounds amazing!! I wish I could have been there! I love our family so so much! But I am so grateful to be able to be here instead! I was so glad that everyone made it up, even if it was only short for Kendra and Jackson and Peanut! Happy Late Birthday to Grandpa! Of cousre Kyle's skit was the best- it always is!! And this must have been Arianne's first reunion! I hope she loved it and it's good that she got to see her husband at his best!!

Yeah, so everything is good here!! My heel is great and I think everything else is good!! I did hurt my ankle a little playing soccer! BUt not bad! It's okay!! I think we might be done with olahraga(sports) until we leave. Don't worry Mom, I keep my shoes on- i do remember that lesson ...and the MTC has rules too!

Oh and so glad that you made it to Dal's wedding!! Good to hear that it all went well!! I hope their honeymoon is awesome!! WIsh I could have told him congratulations in person!

So yeah, District Leader can be hard, sometimes. We have an especially hard time focusing during study time - I do my best to lead by example, although I struggle with it too! I encourage everyone to coba coba coba (try try try). I'm just trying to do my best!

I do get to see Seth a lot and that is fun to talk about Drew!! I was so happy to receive your package Mom!! IT was so great! And also Kyle's!! THank you so much! I enjoyed the laser pointer, even if my Comps did not haha!

Yeah, so Elder Nelson and my cousin Elder Brown are both gone but it was so fun to see them all the time at meals and such!!

Yeah, so everything is great with me here! Just trying to do my very best and give the Lord my very best!! I have learned so much about the importance of faith in these last couple of days! I love in Moroni 7:33 that through faith in Christ "ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me". It may seem bold, I beleive this scripture is literally true!! Through faith, all things can be done!! THat is so important for me as a missionary as I strive to have faith and do the will of God and share his message with the world! I know that this truely is his work. I kknow that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is truly led by Jesus Christ through an actual prophet of God - Thomas S. Monson! I know that the Book of Mormon is a true testament of Christ. I know this because I have read it and through the mercy of God and his messenger Roh Kudus (the Holy Ghost), I know it is true. In Moroni 10:3-5, a prophet of God promises that if we "receive these things and ponder it in Hearts... and ask God ... ye may know the truth of all things" I know this promise is true!!

I love you all so so muchand I pray for you and think of you everyday!!

Love Elder Trevor Brown

Halooooooooo Family!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Guess what???? We got our Visas!! Wahooooo!!!! And our travel plans. So we leave the MTC at 8:00 in the morning tomorrow and then from Salt Lake to Portland, leaving at 11:15 AM. We don't get off the plane at all in Portland and then on to Tokyo Japan, arriving at 3:15 PM (local time I think) August 5. and then depart at 6:20 PM to Jakarta, arriving at 12:10 AM August 6, so midnight!

My bags are pretty packed, so hopefully I'll figure that all out, but shouldn't be a problem. They actually kicked us out of our rooms yesterday and we had to move to a different building, so we're all pretty much packed.

We're super stoked and a little nervous!! I bought a simple Book of Mormon to give away but since we get there at Midnight, so maybe maybe not!

I love you all! be praying for me! I'm always praying for you!!!

Elder Trev