Monday, December 26, 2016

CHRISTMAS :D - Papeete

Joyeux Noel!!!

This week was fantastic.  First off I bought some pasta in a breadbowl and that was very tasty.  

We had tons of Christmas related activities.  And I love activities. 

We made cookies, a lil christmas tree, and had lil christmas lights.  T'was perfect really.

We had a big Christmas party with all of the missionaries on the main island and it was so fun!  Saw all my MTC group, and got to know lots of the other studly servents of the Lord.  We all did comedy Christmas sketches, and they were great.  I would send a video but they were all in French.  

Our big missionary Christmas present each year is we get to watch A MOVIE! Haha usually a Disney.  So we all watched Finding Dory (in French of course) and I enjoyed every minute.  Did not understand every minute, but enjoyed. 

There was a wedding in our ward and it was so awesome!  We saw them come out of the temple, so happy cause they know they're gonna be together forever and ever.  And the wedding food was great!

We went caroling to some houses around the town and they all loved it!  A small child thought it was a good idea to take my backpack and bike away with it.  So we got to wait for like 5 mins till he came back, and he still didn't wanna return the stolen goods. We argued with him for a while, until finally an old lady came over and made him return my backpack.  He was so upset afterwards.  I guess he wanted all the Book of Mormons inside. 

We had fish heads for our Christmas eve dinner! So that was great.  First time for everything amiright
Christmas was amazing!  Started by opening presents from my lovely family, and I got to skype them! It was so much fun!  I miss ya'll so much.  Also holy cow Utah got some snow!  Jealousssssssss!
After we just chilled most of the day, and had a lovely dinner with crepes for dessert.  Quite perfect actually.  

I hope everyone had an awesome Christmas as well!  I love and miss you all!!! I hope Christ was the center of your Christmas, cause it is CHRISTmas amiright???  But luckily, it's not JUST December that we can follow the Savior's example.  We should strive each and every day to become better.  Serve more.  Love more.  I'm so grateful for Jesus Christ and His Gospel. I know that He lives and through following his teachings, we can live happily with our families for ever and ever.  I know the Gospel is our best aid in life, and I'm so grateful we live in a time when the Gospel is in it's fullness. 

Merry Christmas to all! And to all another good 20 months!!!!!

All the loves,

Elder Jenkins

Monday, December 19, 2016



Santa Clause is coming.  Fun fact- I got to hear the Elvis Christmas Album (a timeless gem) cause it was playing at the mission office!! And in "here comes santa clause" he sings "Santa knows that we're God's children, and that makes everything right". And that's so cool cause how true is that!!

I still miss snow and such, but there are a lot of christmas concerts the church puts on, and those are so much fun!  Even if all the songs are in French!

I'm rereading the General Conference talks in La Liahona and ya'll should do the same!  Like they are straight gold!!! You can read a talk in just like 5 mins and feel uplifted and learn something!  It's such great knowledge, how lucky we are to have prophets on the earth to teach us!

Taught Feliz Navidad during the English/Spanish class! My comp teaches spanish, and since the American version of the song has english words we thought it'd be easy to just do that! They all loved it, and of course I danced like a fool to make everyone laugh.

Went to a music shop and played an actual nice guitar!  Haha the worker in broken english told me to play "cooly" cause I guess I was gettin a little too into it!

Ok so interesting thing about hair.  Back in the US, I was used to lots of comments about my hair, when it was very volumus and curly.  But here, everyone has the same hair as me haha! So the style is straight hair.  ALL the Tahitians love straight hair.  So I go to get my haircut, and the lady cutting my hair just starts straightening it.  I was like "What?????" haha I started laughing cause it looked so funny to me but I didn't say anything cause I didn't know how to explain that I thought it was odd.  She probably thought that I always straighten my hair, cause that's the style here! So I had straight hair for a day.  

Got unreasonably soaked the other day.  Rode bikes for a while while it was dumping, and it's like I literally stepped into  a shower.  My socks were soaked.  For the rest of the day.  I love Tahiti

Been out for 4 months now!!!

I hope everyone has a great Christmas!!! You're all amazing children of God! Do something nice for someone every day. CHARITY IS THE KEY

All the loves,
Elder Jenkins

Monday, December 12, 2016

12/12 It's Elder Jenkins! - Papeete

How is everyone! I hope swell.  Enjoyin that December chill.  Keeping snug, swaddled in a warm quilt.  Taking slow sips from a glistening mug of hot coco.

Life is good!  Not too much this week, pretty normal tbh.  I was a tad malade (sick) this week which was a major bummer, but I'm feeling good as new! Luckily it wasn't zika or one of the crazy diseases here haha cause that'll take you out for a month or two.  

Thinking about Christmas, and what it means.  It's really cool.  Repentance is awesome.  The Savior is the coolest guy ever.  Take a minute to read the parts of the New Testament about the Savior's ministry if you have the time.  You'll learn something important.  

Don't give up! The Lord loves ya, I love ya,
all the loves,

Elder Jenkins

Monday, December 5, 2016

Fastest week of my life - Papeete

For reals tho that felt like  2 days.  Mission time is crazy.

This week was great! Lots of progress in the Lord's vineyard. Amazing to hear the stories of all our investigators, and how the Book of Mormon and prayer has brought them such peace and happiness into their lives.  PRAY AND READ.

We went on a hike to "the cross!" It's this big ol crucifix
the Catholics put up on the mountain and it's very pretty.
Always keeps ya thinkin about Jesus!

A new Frenchy moved into the house, and he has a ukulele! Haha so I play that whenever I have the chance at night. I do miss the jams.

My companion made me a tie!!
I chose the pattern and he sewed it.

I bought some cereal this week, even though it's so dang expensive here.  But I miss America okay! Some Tahitian brand frosted flakes.  So good. I ate like a bag and a half in 10 mins.

The work here is crazy! Sometimes I think, "ok, I'll give myself 3 mins to think about home, then I have to get back to work!"  Same with speaking English! Like it is such a mental break to just have an English conversation for more than 10 seconds.  Also feels very strange and sometimes I have to stop myself before I respond in French!

Yesterday was great!  Fast day.  I've decided it's not really fast day until you've sacrificed one good opportunity for some ma'a.  (tahitian for food) Yesterday was popcorn.  I miss so bad haha actually the first popcorn I've seen here.  Thank goodness they have crepes here or I'd have sacrificed all 3 of my fav foods. (crepes, popcorn, chocolate milk) You americans better be thankful for your blessings.  Ya'll don't know how good you have it.

And yesterday was the first presidency christmas message! It was great.  Back in the MTC Elder Bednar told us that if you listen close, every talk is about either Faith, Repentance, Baptism, Holy Ghost, or Enduring to the End.  And each talk has an invitation and promised blessings.  Hope you all found the subject, invitation, and blessings in yesterdays talks.  There's a reason they give the talks at the times they do.  LISTEN TO THE PROPHETS.

We ate some cookies that smelled like hot chocolate and I imagined snow outside and it was great.  Somehow it still feels like Christmas here.  Even without all the lights or family or snow.  And that's
cause Christmas is about Christ and following his example. All you need to do to feel the Christmas spirit is love and serve others.


have another fantastic week,

Your fav, Elder Jenkins

With one of my new best friends Kealoha. He's crazy.


Jammin some tahitian classics.

Monday, November 28, 2016


AHHHH how is everyone!!

I get so excited and smile every time  I sit down to do emails cause I just love ya'll so much!!

So this week was pretty good!  Lots of random fun things happen but really it's just great all the time doing missionary stuff so ya it's always great.

Last P day we went to go fishing and there was a little spot where we could go in the water!  Fun fact- I'm pretty sure Tahiti is the only mission that allows this, but we are allowed to go knee deep in the super warm clear water!  And it felt so so nice and I wanted more than anything to jump all the way in haha but that would not be appropriate!!!
Also my companion caught a barracuda haha the animal life here is nuts.

So this week for the English class I taught everyone Head Shoulders Knees and Toes!  Haha they seemed to enjoy it and they taught me the French version!

Thanksgiving was this week!  How was everyone's thanksgivings I hope great. They don't really celebrate thanksgiving here but they made an exception for us!  We ate at a members house and get this.  They heard they were having an American over for dinner (me) and they bought a turkey!!! Like no way!  Haha so I got a little American food along with all the fish and rice!
On thanksgiving, we asked the host what holliday we were celebrating.  He responded "is it Monday Black?" hahaha I love Tahitians.

Speaking of, I decided wearing all black was necessary on Black Friday, and made it through the day without heatstroke!!

It's crazy the connections I find here.  Like I saw a Utah State University t shirt at an investigators house!  And an Elder from Germany, who is serving with me in Tahiti, has been to my high school.  Like what are the odds!  Neat. 

The kids here are my best friends.  They're all so crazy and fun.  One of the little guys always asks for a pencil so he can draw scribbles.  And each time he just breaks all the lead in the pencil, and then cries because he wants to draw haha.  So i better start carrying around pens.  

Spiritual thought!!!  I'm trying to read the Book of Mormon all the way through again, and I've decided the most repeated phrase in the book is "Inasmuch as you keep my commandments, you will prosper in the land.  But inasmuch as you do not keep my commandments, you will be cut off from my prescence."  (That's God talking) And it is so true.  It's like God just wants to give us blessings.  And those blessings are free and awesome, and all we gotta do is follow the few rules He's given us!  So really if you think about it, commandments are blessings not rules.

Loves ya'll s'much!!!!

Elder Jenkins

Monday, November 14, 2016

Rain rain go away just kidding stay forever - Papeete

Hello everybody!!

Things are great!! Another fun week here in Papeete. 

The French is coming little by little. We teach a ton and everyone here is so nice!  We get random shoutouts on the street all the time from surfer dudes jamming to some island music.  

I keep finding lots of guitars and ukuleles to play and so that's awesome!  I got to jam on a tahitian ukulele with a bunch of other guys playing Weezer songs and they thought it was awesome haha!!
One guy was playing the guitar upside down cause he was left handed!  And he was way good!

It's rainy season now and that means it rains and is cloudy a lot!!! IT'S THE GREATEST EVER YO.  Like it's not even that hot anymore, just rainy and amazing.  

People sometimes try to talk in English with me and they think it's so funny haha! 

I've had many battles with lizards in our house but they are simply too fast.  The lizards are superior and we must submit.  They will reside with us in our house.

Spiritual story!!!
  Ok so one thing I strongly believe (which is also very cliche) is that the Lord works in mysterious ways.  Like I think He on purpose answers prayers different than we think He will. Why? Maybe to try our faith? Maybe to humble us? Or maybe He just has a crazy sense of humor idk.  But anyways! We were contacting and prayed that we would be able to find someone to teach.  So we go out and literally go through every single street, talk to tons of people, and loop around our entire sector and nothing.  We're like what the heck man we prayed and everything! And as soon as we have completed our travels, some lady walks up to us and asks "so why is it called the Book of Mormon if Joseph Smith wrote it?" Hahaha and I almost died.  So we quickly explained that Joseph did not, in fact write the book and gave her a quick lesson.  And she accepted the invitation to be taught!! The work here is awesome.  Things like that happen literally all the time.  From those experiences I've learned A LOT of things, but some quick ones-  God is there.  He is listening and WILL answer your prayers.  BUT you've gotta have lots of faith and act upon it.  I believe faith to be a verb rather than a noun.  You have to do something first, believing that God will follow through.  That is faith.  


Elder Jenkins

Classic mango stand

My companion with a huge snail.

Me and temple cause why not

Hina's baptism!!  I forgot to say, my companion baptized her and I got to confirm her
and give her the Holy Ghost (in French so I struggled a little) but it was so awesome!

Some crazy kids

Monday, November 7, 2016

IAORANA!! - Papeete

Hello!! How is everyone!  I feel like I just barely wrote to ya'll!  I'm convinced that missionary time goes by WAY faster than regular time cause the days are just flying by!  I've been in Tahiti for 3 weeks now!!

Me with my companion Elder Tekurio!
Ok so things about Tahiti
It's super duper hot here!  I pretty much haven't stopped sweating since I arrived.  Which has taken a while to get used to, but now I barely even notice the stickyness or the constant dripping from my forehead.  It's pretty hard to stay clean when you're biking through dirt roads in the hot sun!  Mostly the humidy is nuts.  Which is kinda cool cause I've only really ever lived in Utah where it's always super dry!

It smells like a lot of things.  The ocean, sewers, cigarettes and weed, flowers, sweat.  Haha it's great. 

The music here is awesome!!  You hear people with little speakers walking around all the time.  Mostly it's American pop songs, but remixed to sound "islandy."  Also!  People play lots of music here and I've seen people walk around with ukuleles and guitars all over the place.  They have lots of little jam sessions playing island Tahitian songs and it sounds so cool!  They play not regular ukuleles, but Tahitian ukuleles.  They are played the same, but have 8 strings made of fishing line!  Weird sound.  And they play them so fast!!! holy cow! I'll try to take a video one of these days.  But I've been able to play a lot of guitars here just at members houses and that's been a HUGE blessing!  I miss so much!  We mostly just listen to church music. Tahitians I live with jam hard to Christian Rock. It's pretty awesome lol.  

It's super super pretty.  At least parts!  There's lots of graffiti, sewer smells, dead animals, and all that good stuff.  But we get to exercise at a members house right next to the ocean so I get to see that every morning!! But overlooking the different parts of the island is really beautiful.  And there are lots of mountains!  So it's really not that different from Salt Lake!  

Lots of pretty/ common views I see every day
Lots of pretty/ common views I see every day

Lots of pretty/ common views I see every day
The food here is SOOOOO GOOD.  So we mostly eat fish (raw) and chicken!  So that's awesome!  Probably cause they're pretty cheap.  (because the ocean is 3 mins away and there are chickens literally all over the place).  And we get fed by members EVERY NIGHT!  So to say the least I've eaten a lot here!  Definitely much fatter than when I left on the mission.  Whenever I complain to anyone about gaining weight they just smile and say "welcome to the mission."  They sell French baguettes everywhere you go for 53cents and it's incredible.  The best bread ever.  So that's always the go-to because we don't have a ton of money for food!  But I'm not complaining cause I LOVE.  

There's a CREPE STAND IN OUR SECTOR!!!!  DO YOU UNDERSTAND.  I was so happy when I found that out.  So we get crepes there a lot and the lady who runs it is so nice and sometimes gives us free crepes!!  The Lord really watches out for us!   People here are so so so nice. They just give everything to you.  Their way of showing friendship is by giving you food!  

The fruit here is unreal.  By far better than anything like ever.  Pineapples and Mangoes for dayyyzzzz.  Also I ate a coconut!  Elder Teamo knocked it off a tree for me and bashed it open and I partook of it's blood.  It was fizzy like carbonated!  I don't even know how that works but it was cool. 

Also I finally had the infamous fafaru.  For those who don't know what that is, it's raw fish.  That is left out in the sun for a while, and is then placed in salt water for about 10 days.  Then you eat it.  Why? Because you can.  It tastes like death.  But who am I to judge. 

Life here is super fun.  Sometimes I just stop and think to myself "what the heck am I doing!?" Cause it's quite a culture shock sometimes!  Whenever I meet someone who speaks English I have to pause and adjust back to my native language.  I really really hope I remember how to talk when I come home!

We are always doing something.  Studying, teaching lessons, biking to lessons, helping with ward activities, trying to find people to teach etc.  And I love it!  It's super exhausting but I really enjoy having a full day every day.  No wasted time.  It's lots of work but it really pays for itself.  Seeing investigators find the joy of the Gospel is amazing.  Love it.  

We also do fun stuff here!  All the missionaries are super cool and it's fun to talk with them.  And we go fishing on occasions!  The fish are all super pretty with lots of colors.  I just use a pole with a line literally tied onto the end and somehow I still catch lots of fish.  I love Tahiti!

"Mon Poisson et Moi" - A love story

Spiritual thought!!  So I'm reading the Book of Mormon over again, and I've hit the section in Alma about Ammon, Aaron, Alma etc.  And it's super helpful cause they were like the best missionaries of all time!  And what I've learned is that success comes through patience and enduring through hardships, and lots and lots of prayer.  It's night and day difference when we forget to pray before teaching or contacting.  Prayer is the key to success.  And I think that's the case with a lot of things too.  Because Heavenly Father loves us.  That's probably the biggest thing I've come to really know on the mission.  He loves us soooo much and will bless us and give us so many things if we let Him.  You just gotta ask and have faith.  And then be grateful for the blessings you receive.  

Thanks again to everyone who writes me,  ya'll are literally THE GREATEST!

All the loves,


Tahiti Temple

Everyone rides scooters here

Our house!!

Our house!!

Haha my companion gave me a haircut and also thought it would be funny to straighten my hair!

Monday, October 31, 2016


How is everyone!!

Halloween is in fact a thing here in Tahiti!! I'm dressing up as a missionary haha!!!
Things are great here.  I still can't really understand what anyone is saying, but it all somehow works out! I can tell the gift of tongues is real because the only time I can really speak well is when I'm bearing my testimony lol! Missionary work here is awesome! It's super hot and we have to bike everywhere!!! We teach a lot and I love it!! Two of our investigators agreed to be baptized!! It was awesome and I had to do the invitation cause I'm new and was so scared haha.  But I love all the people here!!  Ok I'm super pressed on time and it's always so busy, so I promise I'm gonna write a huge email next week with lots of pictures!!

All the loves,

Elder Jenkins

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Monday, October 24, 2016

President and Sister Bize, and my first companion Elder Tekurio

It's Lit Ya'll

I email on Mondays now!
...Cause I'm in Tahiti!!!

This place is nuts.  The flights were great, everything was super unclear and we weren't actually sure our luggage was gonna get here, but it did!  Merci Seigneur.  Just walking through the airports was way cool cause there were actual people!  Not just missionaries!  I felt like a celebrity in the SLC airport and in the California airport I kept getting the weirdest glances haha!  It's awesome. 

Ok so as soon as we landed in the Tahiti airport stuff got real.  EVERYONE SPEAKS FRENCH.  I thought I was pretty decent at French from the MTC.  That was a fallacy.  (Also if you haven't noticed I can't spell.  Also I'm typing this on a French keyboard so 90% of the words are red underlined.)  So ya I can't understand anyone.  It's great.  Super fun trying to play charades with everyone I talk to.  Whenever I meet someone from America it is such a treat because I get to have an actual conversation!  I hope I'm not going crazy cause I just sit and think to myself a lot.  Also side note- English is the worst.  None of it makes sense.  Trying to translate all the miscellaneous phrases is impossible, because they don't exist in French.  Also English words have no consistency.  Stop yourself every time you say the word "get" and realize there is no word for "get" in French.  There are like 17 different meanings for that word and now I have to memorize all the corresponding words in francais.  

LUCKILY my new companion speaks English!  At least a little!  His name is Elder Tekurio and is a native Tahitian.  I live with 3 native Tahitians, the other two are the Mission President's assistants!  They are all so cool.  I can't understand everything, but I can understand what's generally going on and we tell each other funny stories in broken English/French.  My companion is super cool.  He plays the violin very well, he's super smart and speaks like 5 languages! or at least parts of 5 languages!  And he's very patient with the fact I can't speak to anyone here which is very good!  

I can do my part in teaching lessons,  the hardest part for me is just comprehending what other people are saying.  But it's alright I'll get it eventually!

So Tahiti is way cool.  My area is Papeete 2, which is the biggest city in French Polynesia.  So it's decently urbanized.  It has about the vibe/quality as Kilby court, for those of you who have been there.  And then some bigger buildings. Except much hotter and more trees!  Also tons of wild animals.  There are cats, dogs, and chickens literally all over the place.  And millions of tiny tiny bugs that you can barely even see.  Like everywhere.  All over the floors.  There aren't too many bugs, but I have seen a jumping spider, a cockroach, lots of little crabs and oh ya an eel.  Just chillin in the gutter.  

There are many times where I think to myself "what the heck am I doing here?" hahaha!  Sitting in a dirty apartment with people speaking another language eating lots of raw fish. But it's a good time! And it's awesome to see people feel the spirit in lessons and the joy the Gospel brings to these people who don't have very much.  

I taught an English class.  Yep.  Definitely not qualified for that.  To a bunch of Tahitians.  And I teach every Wednesday!  So if you wanna learn English or Spanish head over to our chapel wed at 6!  Also pretty sure I said something offensive in French whoops lol.  But the members still seem to like me so I think I'm in the clear. 

It's all super crazy, and there is beyond more to tell ya'll, but there's not too much time and I'll save some stuff to tell you in later weeks!  

Thank you all so much for your prayers and letters!  I miss you all sooooo much and I love ya!

All the loves,

Elderrrrrrrrrrrrrr JENKINSSSSSSSS

Friday, October 14, 2016


I hope I spelled that right.  I can speak French but usually forget the spellings lol.

AH!! I leave for Tahiti on MONDAY!!! at like 6AM and I AM SO EXCITEDDDDDDDDDD

We moved residences earlier this week, which was annoying cause we only had like 6 days left! But the new building has nice desks.  And I like nice desks. Because we are missionaries.  Which means we study.  ALL. THE. TIME! it's great.

Some of the French missionaries on our floor play lots of pranks, and I won't really go into it, but there have been multiple instances involving a real, dead, tarantula.  And the drinking fountain now permanently smells like fish.

SO GET THIS. Some of the other islander missionaries and Sister Weyland (our new addition to our Tahitian district) didn't get their Visas on time, so they are going to the Irvine-Cali, and SLC East missions!! So if anyone sees an Elder Walton or an Elder Burbank out in SLC tell them hi for me! And feed them.  They're good Elders.  But don't worry, after a few weeks they will get to go to their originally assigned missions.

Ok so Brother Markham is one of our leaders.  And he makes crazy good grape juice from like 40 different varieties of grapes from all around the world.  And on Sunday he gave us a presentation explaining Jacob 5.  (A really long confusing chapter in the Book of Mormon) And he brought a ton of his grape juice (called Chateau Markham) and candied pears and fruit leather and I thought I was gonna die it was so good.  We are way too spoiled here.  We are so blessed THE LORD IS GOOD.  And I've really learned to appreciate the scriptures.  Like you can learn anything you'd ever need to know from the scriptures.  And there is ALWAYS more to learn.

ELDER BEDNAR CAME TO SPEAK!  He's I think my fav Apostle.  His talks always go way in depth.  So there's always so much to learn.  Go check out some of his talks. 

We had our last lesson with one of our teachers and that was sad.  Frere Vanderholm, what a guy.  He served in Tahiti and has given so much good advice to us young grasshoppers.  ALSO he was in a Mormon Message when he was like 17! Haha here's the link-     He's the one with braces in the really cool snowy lake area.  He looks much different now but it was funny to see this!

Also I met the Czech Slovak missionaries here! There's only like 3 of them at the MTC right now.  For those of you who don't know why that's important, I WAS a Czech missionary! (for a day haha) visiting the amazing McConkie family when they were mission presidents there.  I walked around the beautiful city of Prague with a real missionary and we talked to people about the Gospel in a language I couldn't understand.  And now that's what I'm going to do every day! Haha it's awesome.  

The Spirit is REAL!  It's actually nuts to see the difference when the spirit is in a lesson or not.  When it is, the investigator is super interested and feels peace and we can speak the language really well.  When it's not, the investigator is super bored, learns nothing, and we can't speak the language half as well as normal.  

Ok so I was sittin one day, and felt the need to write a list of things/ ways to be happy.  And more importantly to have joy.  It's kinda an advice list I wrote to myself. So here is the list (so far hehehe)

-Read the Book of Mormon
-Make sure you are progressing as a person.  Be productive. Learn lots of new things that interest you./ exercise/ practice and develop new skills.
-Serve others
-Follow the commandments and live the Gospel.
-Be humble
-Get enough sleep
-Pray/ be grateful for everything/ count your blessings
-Keep priorities straight
-Trust God/ Realize we don't know the big picture, but He does.  It'll all be good in the end.
-Love unconditionally
-Make friends and meet people. Smile and make someone else's day.
-Don't be so serious.
-Don't be lazy/ idle/ waste time
-Create your own self confidence/ don't rely on others.
-Forgive and forget
-Don't complain
-Be the bigger man/ swallow your pride
-Realize trials are blessings in disguise.

I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH! Can't even describe it.  CAN'T EVEN!! I hope life is treatin you all GREAT!!! 

All the loves,


Friday, October 7, 2016

week va'u - Provo MTC


How is everyone!  I'm doing just dandy. 

Ok so CONFERENCE!!  Literally the best time ever.  I never really appreciated conference as much as I should have until I became a missionary.  Like, these are PROPHETS!  Actually the coolest thing that we live in a time with prophets on the earth.  Cause they give so much good council on how to find joy.  Speaking of, probably my fav talk was Elder Nelson's.  EVERYONE GO READ IT RIGHT NOW!  It's all about Joy.  very good.  RIGHT NOW GO READ.  Or watch.  That's even better.  But they're all so good so just watch them all if you haven't already!

It's getting colder yo!  It's kinda nice and I feel like I should enjoy the sensation of cold, cause I very well might not feel it for the next two years.  I'm very excited to go to Tahiti.  Haha sometimes we can hear BYU games off in the distance at night and it's fun to remember the good ol days, eating a cougar tail and watching some quality sport.  

OK YO so for a devotional this week Vocal Point came and performed!! (BYU's male accapella group) (I can't spell)  They are so good like holy cow.  And ever since then I've been obsessed.  They have a  lot of pop covers, but we only listen to the religious stuff.  If you haven't heard "nearer my God to thee" or "Homeward Bound" you need to look them up this instant because they are my jam.  Like if I could listen to normal music I'd still be listening to those right now.  And we got to meet some of them! And funny enough we saw one of the members today walking back from the temple!  I felt very "fangirl" like lol.

We said goodbye to a lot of Elders, including elder Kerr, which was sad, but so awesome! They're all gonna do so great!!

SO GUESS WHAT! There's a guitar here!! It's in some teaching room and we went in and I got to play it for a little.  It felt SO GOOD I miss guitar.  Stoked to be able to play in Tahiti!  Only 10 more days isn't that nuts!!! WOOHOO!

Also my band's EP comes out tomorrow on Spotify and iTunes and everything tomorrow!  Haha Idk if I'm allowed to advertise but go check it out!! That project took a lot of work and I'm so happy it's finally getting out there!! 

I love you all!  God loves you and you're all amazing!  Thanks for all the emails, I hope everyone is doing great!!


Things to check out-


-#MCM by Middle Class Marvel (my band hehe) saturday oct 8

Friday, September 30, 2016

Week Hitu (7) - Provo MTC

Eha to'oe huru?  

Tahitian is nuts.  It might very well be the death of me.  The grammar principals are fairly simple compared to French or English, but the memorization and pronunciation is utterly ridiculous.  But, I feel so blessed and grateful to have the opportunity to learn TWO languages!!! There are some islands called the Marquises in my mission, and if I get sent to those I'll actually have to learn ANOTHER LANGUAGE.  I can't tell whether I'd like to or not lol.  But yes thank you for prayers because they help very much!

I'm having a good time here.  I mean it's like the toughest thing in the world, and sometimes I wanna scream, but I wouldn't rather be doing anything else.  The other Elders are becoming pretty good friends and we get along! And guess what!? We got a new addition to our 4 person classroom!   We got a solo sister named Tuahine(sister) Weyland.  She's pretty cool and already knows more French than we do, so she's jumping right on the Tahitian train, and will leave the same time as us to TAHITI!!! Also it was Elder Kerr's BIRTHDAY yesterday and so that was fun to be able to see him.  

I've decided the Gospel is very similar to a good band.  Like your favorite band.  That makes you so so happy and the lyrics are very deep and can help you through rough times.  Then, you try to show your friends and they're like "nah".  So naturally you're upset, because they can't see how amazing it is.  LIKE THIS IS THE BEST THING EVER HOW CAN YOU NOT UNDERSTAND! I have a lot of those feelings while trying to teach here.  Because it's hard to understand/believe in the Gospel when you don't have a lot of understanding/experience.  Just like how someone might brush off a good band because they've only heard one or two songs they didn't like that much.  You just have to realize that underneath the surface is something incredible. 

I just hope so so so so so (infinity) much I can spread the amazingness of these blessings to as many people as possible.  Because once you REALLY understand what it's all about, there's nothing better.  It's taken me a while to get to that point, but it's been so worth it.  I miss everyone so much, but I can already tell I'm never gonna wanna leave Tahiti and the chance to be a missionary.  

Also everyone go check out the band "twenty one pilots" because that's what I got that idea from haha.   |-/


Elder Jenkins

Friday, September 23, 2016

Week 6 - Provo MTC

Hello everyone! How's life!

This week went by pretty fast! (although I really can't tell one day from another lol) But I'm still learning so much! Hopefully all your lives are more exciting than mine right now hahaha!  Don't worry I'm still doing well, I just CAN'T WAIT TO GET TO TAHITI

This week was tough (like every week) and I'm trying to perfect French cause this is our last week of French!  We start Tahitian on Monday.  Nuts. It's weird to think that we'd be hopping on a plane this week if we didn't have to learn a second language.  But, I'm sure it's gonna be worth it!  

One day this week it smelled like smoke everywhere and it was so weird.  Anyone know why?  Speaking of, Elder Todd put some sort of Chinese cup of noodles in the microwave, and turns out the lid had tin foil in it.  So the residence smelled like smoke all that night as well.  At least we didn't burn anything down!

So some Elders and Sisters got chosen to be in the MTC Choir to sing in General Conference! Unfortunately I was not one of them hahaha! But it's aright, just look out for those good lookin Elders and Sisters with the prophets! Choir is still so fun, and we all have story time while we are waiting for it to start.

Probably the best part about this week is that IT RAINED YESTERDAY!

I love the rain.  Super stoked for rainy season in Tahiti.  

Sorry this is short but really not much happens anymore haha!

Spiritual thought!!- While teaching, I've seen how it's difficult for people to keep commandments.  Especially new and "more difficult" ones like tithing, the law of chastity, word of wisdom, etc.  But what I've also realized while studying, is that harder commandments bring stronger blessings.  The Lord knows each of us individually and he knows what is hard for us.  If we show increased faith and obey all the commandments (even the hard ones) he will bless us tenfold.  And He will always be there to help us in our times of need.  You just have to keep your eye out for miracles, cause they happen every day.  *definition of a miracle by my teacher- "when we see God's hand in our life"  So really everything God does is a miracle.  And he helps us a lot.

Here are some awesome videos we watched in our additional study time this week and they are really cool.


Elder Jenkins

Friday, September 16, 2016

Week Cinq - Provo MTC

Hi! :)

Ok so I think things have finally slowed down here at the MTC! Not so much learning-wise, but as far as adjusting to the lifestyle I'm pretty solid.  

I've been here a month now.  Crazy.  And I'm halfway done with the MTC! One more month to go!!  It's not too bad here but I'm sure compared to Tahiti it's lacking.  Haha to say the least.  We have one more week of learning French, then we start TAHITIAN.  Oh dear boy.  Plz send prayers.  That language is nuts.  Not even close to English or French.  Fun fact, I found out my teacher is from the south, and she spoke French to us in a Southern Georgia accent and it was one of the funniest things ever.  

We got to hear from not one, but TWO apostles this week!! That makes 3 in a row.  Ballard and Cook both came for evening devotionals.  Both talks very good, about mission work and love.  ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE!

The older group of Tahitians left, so the MTC feels very different.  It's still fun, but I don't really know too many people anymore.  Gotta make some new friends! :D   I got called as the District Leader! Which isn't really that special cause there are only 4 of us and so we will all get a turn.  But still.  It feels fun to have power over my peers hahahaha. This week we had a jeune d'Anglais! Which translates to "English fast"  So basically, we couldn't speak English the entire day!  To say the least, we were much more quiet than we usually are! But I think my French has improved, so there ya go.  

Teaching lessons is going well, we got both our (fake) investigators to agree to baptism! (Or at least work towards it)  It's awesome to see a change in someone and see them want to become better. (Even if they aren't real people) 

We taught a real member a lesson this week too! IN TAHITI! We taught him over skype and tbh I'm surprised we were able to communicate at all because I can barely speak French as it is!  But it was really fun and he was really nice and there were so many dogs!! Haha so I'll have that to look forward to!

Thank you all for giving me updates about the outside world!! From what I hear, the BYU-Utah game was a tragedy.  It's ok as long as they win once I'm back! GO COUGARS!  Also I hear twenty one pilots covered an MCR song and I about cried.  I guess there will be many more things like that.  Lots of songs I can't hear in the next 2 years.  

But ya it's pretty fun here.  An Elder in the zone (Elder Dorsey) Freestyle raps every night and it's so cool! And yes it's better than me rapping called to serve hahaha.  The choir is way fun too!  The director is actually hilarious and kinda gives spiritual talks inbetween the singing.  SUPER FUN. 

OH YA and the best part- IT RAINED!!!! I MISS RAIN.  Elder Jorgensen and I ran outside and got soaked for as long as we could before bedtime.  Basically the best.  Looking forward to all the rain in Tahiti!!!

Spiritual thought!- The more I learn about the Gospel the more sense it seems to make.  Like even from a logical standpoint, I don't see how the church couldn't be true.  But with that, the church isn't always perfect.  There are always gonna be strange rules and rude people, but that doesn't change the message of the Gospel.  That God lives, there is a living prophet, and Christ died so we can become perfect and live with our loved ones forever.  So don't worry about what other people think.   The Gospel is there to help you, and you don't have to answer to anyone, except God.  

I LOVE YOU ALL.  Thank you so so so so so so so so so much to anyone who has written me cause it means so much and I LOVE hearing about all your lives! It just makes my week so much better

All the loves,
 Elder Jenkins

The Temple with all the Missionaries

I saw Elder Kerr- and Elder Miskimens right before he left!

Every week, all the French missionaries sing
together at the temple under the trees and socialize.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Week Quatro - Provo MTC

It has been a week! Haha not too eventful, but I feel like I've learned and experienced SO MUCH.  First off, French is awesome. I'm SO glad I get to learn it cause J'aime francais!  I hope I can learn the rest of it pretty quick so I can pick up Tahitian!! The other group of missionaries going to Tahiti has started Tahitian and they say it's pretty tough but really fun haha! So prayers and wishes of luck are appreciated.

Almost ALL the French speakers are leaving this week! All the French and French Canadian have finished their stay here.  After monday all of the French missionaries will be composed of only my 4 Tahiti, 4 new Elders going to other islands, that came this wednesday, and the group of missionaries going to French africa (including Elder Kerr)  So our numbers will go from like 50 to 20.  It'll be sad to see them all go, they've become such good friends.  But I couldn't be more excited for what they are going to do and I wish them the best of luck!!

There are a lot of pianos here in random rooms so I've had a chance to play a little bit of music during free time and that makes me very happy!  I'm not great at the piano but I've had a few Elders teach me some songs.  Again, ANY music sounds like heaven hahaha! I remember the first time I got to play a piano here I thought it sounded so amazing.  

This week has definetly not been easy, but it's insane how much you learn and grow in a week.  You learn big life lessons here every day. Both from teachers and from personal experiences through dealing with other people, trying to teach, and putting everything you've got into trying to study the language and the Gospel.

So this week I got a slap in the face from an Apostle so that was fun.  Metaphorically of course, (Apostles are too nice to slap anyone.[Except maybe Satan])  But here's the story-  A little while ago we had a speaker come and talk about a new missionary phrase- "Teach Repentance and Baptize Converts."   And I thought it was so stupid.  They wanted us to have that as a mindset in the missionfield.  I just thought it made the church sound a lot "shallower" than from our mission purpose "Invite others to come unto Christ..."  To me, the phrase sounded like we only cared about how many baptisms we got, with no regard to helping people individually.

Then Elder D. Todd Christofferson (one of the 12 Apostles) came to the MTC and gave a talk about the same phrase. My eyes were opened for sure.  Of course we want people to get baptized and become part of God's kingdom, but I was totally missing the "Teach Repentance" part.  

Before the mission I looked at Repentance as "Saying sorry to God for doing bad stuff and then asking forgiveness."  It is so much more than that.  I feel like the word repentance has such a heavy feel to it, but really it's just awesome.  Repentance is "a changing of one's heart", and in doing so, becoming more like Christ.  More than just saying sorry, it is changing your mindset to become a better person, guilt free of any mistakes.  Go watch the "Because of Him" video clip the Church put out cause it's awesome and so so true.

So ya, repentance is awesome. Not easy, but it will bless your life SO SO much.  I repent like everyday, because I want to correct all of my little mistakes and become more perfect.  It's a way to have second chances with others, God, and yourself.  

Sorry if that was a little "preachy" but I mean I am out here preaching the good word for two years haha! And that's been something that I've learned this week and has helped me a lot.  The Gospel is so true and so cool.  It's amazing what faith can do.  God answers prayers 100%, IF you ask and have faith.  Thank you SOOOO MUCH to everyone who was able to write me this week, I absolutely LOVE hearing from y'all! I'm praying for you and I hope everyone is doing great! 

-Go Cougars

All the loves,
Elder Jenkins.

*Stuff to check out-
    And if you like the band "Neon Trees",

Friday, September 2, 2016

Week Tres - Provo MTC


Ok so the weeks here are weird, it's week three but I've really only been here like 16 days so it's not that long.  How is everyone!? I hope everyone back at home is awesome with school/college starting up.  I'm getting pretty used to the routine here and tbh it's not that bad. 

The usual daily routine consists of forcing myself out of bed at 6:30 in order to be "exactly obedient" (that's a saying they have here, "obedience brings blessings but exact obedience brings miracles." and I DEFINITELY need a miracle if I'm gonna learn two languages in 9 weeks haha!) Then we exercise for an hour, then we study for 3-4 (Personal study, companionship study, and language study) And all the studies are supposed to be aimed towards how we can teach our current investigators better.  Speaking of investigators!  We finished teaching "Nicole" and that was a fun first experience!  She was very nice and was encouraging to our week old French.

Elder Todd and I with Nicole

Now Elder Todd and I are teaching our teachers, Kimble and Vanderholm, who are pretending to be investigators.  (investigators are people who wanna know more about the Gospel and get taught by missionaries)  They are good actors let me tell you.  Vanderholm's character is so intimidating and just stares judgingly the whole time haha!! It's pretty scary and difficult to teach when the room feels so tense.  (and when you can't freaking speak French)  But ya!  We usually have 2-3  3hr lessons inbetween meals and then go back to the residence where we hang out, sing hymns and sleep.  

On P Days! (which are Fridays) We wake up and go straight to the temple! Then we eat from the temple cafeteria and it's SO GOOD!  yummys.  Then we come back and do our laundry, and write emails! (Which is what I'm doing now)  At 2:40 we have a giant soccer game with all the French speakers!  It is very fun and very hot.  I better get used to it.  Then at 6PM, P Day ends and we have a class.  

---Some random thoughts--- 
 It's so awesome seeing all these Elders I knew from high school come in! I'll pass someone I know every once in a while and I'll get so excited.  Elder Kerr learns French in the same building as me so we get to talk all the time! (when we aren't diligently studying French and The Lord's work, of course.)

Elder Kerr and I being Ethauns
The MTC has no regard for a sense of time.  It will feel like 10PM when it's only 11AM and the days come and go so fast but so slow.  I'm thankful we all have watches otherwise I would never know the time.  

I. Eat. So. Much. Food. Here.  But we do a fair bit of exercise so it's fine.  And I drink 2 glasses of chocolate milk every meal.  Praise for the BYU creamery.

I have had the oddest dreams while I've been here.  And they're always like action adventure end of the world type stuff.  And I can never remember them, just little parts.

We've met so many people who are already fluent in 2,3,4 languages and it's nuts! Like how do you do that!! And then I realize that will be me in two years lol.

We always toss an orange around for entertainment during study time.  Until it breaks and leaks all over my white shirt...

I spilled food on my new pink tie and I had to clean it before Wednesday, because on Wednesdays we wear pink. (ties)

There are a few Elders here who were also in bands before they came! So it's fun to talk to them about music. 

We taught TRCs this week! TRCs (idk what it stands for  [*see note below]) but basically we teach LDS members who speak French as practice! It's fun teaching actual people and not actors! I'm so stoked to go out in the field.

OK! STORYTIME! So we have a pretty busy schedule locked up here in the MTC so nothing THAT exciting really happens.  BUT! Elder Todd and I made it to the "outside." Here's how.  
Elder Todd's jaw has been bugging him, so he talked to some people about it, and turns out our Branch 2nd councilor (one of the guys that runs the French part of the MTC) is a dentist!! And he knew just what to do to fix it, he just had to make a retainer thingy to keep his jaw from doing stuff while Elder Todd slept.  So, he invited us to come see him any time on Monday.
So Monday after breakfast we hopped on a shuttle to Markham's (that's the Dentist's name) office! It feels like it's been so long since I've been in a car!  We started driving and I realized, We are SO CLOSE to BYU! Like across the street.  I saw the buildings where some of my friends live, and that was crazy.  It's odd to think that the world is so close but I feel so secluded haha!  Anyways, we get to the dentist's office and it turns out to be a KIDS DENTISTS OFFICE with an aquarium with the finding nemo fish and everything.  

Markham sits us down and they make a mould for Elder Todd's retainer.  Markham then tells us it will take about 2 hours to make the retainer, so HE INVITES US TO HIS HOUSE FOR LUNCH! SCORE!  We meet his dog, Axel, who was some rare "ridgeback" showdog breed and very pretty.  We then met his wife who was so so nice and they made us the best sandwiches I've ever had in my life.  (Probably cause I'm used to the MTC food by now) They also gave us their homemade wine!!! (Don't worry mom and dad it was just grapejuice) But seriously this stuff was amazing.  They grow like hundreds of types of grapes from all over the world and every year make around 1200 bottles of very fancy grapejuice. They invented their own steamer and everything. It's called Chateau Markham and there are several varieties consisting of many different combinations of grapes.  That was seriously probably the best stuff I've ever drunk.  Drinken? Drunken? Idk.

So as we finish up our food, Markham goes back to work ON HIS UNICYCLE and tells us the directions to walk back.  When we were walking back I felt like a real missionary haha! Everyone was looking at us and some people stopped to talk and we got honked at!  I felt like a celebrity as a missionary in Provo lol.  

When we got back to the dentist, we got the retainer, and as we were waiting for the shuttle to take us back to the MTC, we talked with the dental assistants and it was so fun!  Since it was a kid's dentist they made us balloon animals and gave us stickers hahaha!

The balloon animals Elder Todd and I got

The stickers which we naturally decorated our nametags

But ya it was quite a fun time, and it made me super excited to be out of the MTC.  6 weeks to go!

The French is actually coming really well! I can understand most when people talk, and I can speak pretty confidently to friends and in lessons.  Studying has been difficult cause we have to stay focused for so long but it has been so rewarding.
ALSO! I saw my first guitar in a while! Nicole, our investigator (who is really a teacher) had it to play hymns on our weekly sunday temple walk!  I REALLY wanted to play it but didn't ask cause I didn't wanna be "that guy" hahaha!

I'm not gonna lie, this was a pretty difficult week and has been very humbling.  Of course learning languages is hard, but the emotional and spiritual impacts of the MTC are brutal.  It's hard trying to be a perfect missionary haha! It takes a lot of sucking up your pride and trying to be humble enough to learn from the Lord.  I truly know that God answers prayers, I have seen crazy cool things happen as answers to my prayers since I've been here.  

Thanks again so much to anyone who has written me or sent me anything, you guys are THE BEST.  top notch.  number one. best of show.  first place.  Thankuthankuthanku

Also sorry my emails are so long, they will calm down now that I'm getting used to the new lifestyle.

  All the lovezzzzzzzzzzz, 

      Elder Jenkins

*From the MTC Wikipedia Page:

Teaching Resource Center

Missionaries review a mock teaching session in the TRC.
The Teaching Resource Center (TRC) gives missionaries some experience teaching in their mission language, even if it is their native tongue. All missionaries visit the TRC each week. Volunteers who speak the language role play as "investigators" (people who are investigating the church) in these teaching situations.[8] At the end, Missionaries watch a video tape of their teaching session to find ways to improve their language skills and teaching style.
Volunteers are usually returned missionaries and/or BYU students with language abilities. Members of other faiths are able to volunteer as well. All volunteers must present a temple recommend or BYU ID card to participate. As visitors to the MTC, volunteers must pick up a guest pass at the main desk before going to the TRC.