You May Not Believe This March 26, 2013

Hey everyone,
I hope everyone is doing well! I have some unexpected news. For some reason I guess I do not yet fully understand, I have been transfered again… I was only in Ginninderra as canberra zone leader for one transfer. Hmmm. I am still a bit shocked about it, but am okay with it all now (I was pretty upset and confused initially) I would have to say that canberra has been my favorite area so far in my mission, for a lot of reasons. I really felt at home there, and only having been in ginninderra for one transfer, I did not imagine that I would move. But as I was able to visit a few people and families that I grew close to there, I felt a peace, the only thing I could compare it to is how I felt when I left my family for the MTC, I feel that this is an inspired move. I will really miss canberra, the miracles, experiences and people there have touched me forever, and as I reflect on those memories I see God’s hand in all of them and trust that He has a purpose in moving me at this time… I am now assigned to the Dapto area in the newly formed McArthur Zone. My compnion is named Elder Pito, from Tahiti, his island is called Bora Bora, from the pictures he has shown me it is one of the most beautiful places on the earth! I will definitely plan on visiting him after my mission. This is actually his last transfer of his mission, so I imagine I will be his last companion, he is a great elder, he speaks french, but after 22 months his english is pretty deccent. He is a quiet and humble person as far as I can tell, I really feel blessed to be his companion.
I have only been here for two days, one of those was an all day service project that ended with my district leader almost killing himself on an ATV. It was a pretty incredible sight to see, about 10 meters from where my companion and I were standing he took a turn too sharp and the bike rolled no less than 5 times, pieces broke off and were flying everywhere, he miraculously was flung from the atv and landed directly under a fence that the bike bounced off of and landed upright continuing in the other direction until it was stoped by another section of fencing. if the fence were not there the ATV would have landed right on top of him. But no worries, he is fine. it was nothing short of a miracle that he is not injured, or dead, especially considering that he was not even waering a helmet. I hope he has learned from that experience to not berak mission rules. haha. I am actually the only white person in my district, definitely a new expereince, we have a tahitian, samoan, tongan, el salvadorian, and another tahitian and… me! They are a funny group, It will be fun serving around them.
I dont know too much about the area except that in the next few weeks there will be three baptisms. thats a pretty incredible blessing to walk into! It is really very exhausting to learn a new area, so many people to meet, places to explore, and respnsibilities and projects to learn, but I feel a new measure of strength and energy with me at the moment. This being my ninth area, I have a growing testimony that the Lord strengthens us to meet the tasks he puts upon our shoulders. I dont know why Heavenly Father has decided to move me so much, most missionaries I know have about four or five areas during their two years, but I think Ill make it to 10. haha.
I am excited and ready for this new challenge. It a gorgeous area, right on the coast again just south of a city called wollongong. it has a massive lagoon in the middle of the area, and excepting the steel mill, it has some gorgeous ocean views. I dont know much about the area’s demographic, but it is much slower and more humble than either sydney or canberra, I think it will be more similar to Dubbo as far as the peoples general personality goes. Seems like a lot of laid back, kind and simple folks. I will have more news and thoughts next week for sure!
Not a lot more to say than that. I love you all. I love this work, I know Its Gods work. Thanks for reading my letters, I look forward to when I can see you again!
Elder Faulkner
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