Thursday, January 14, 2016

January 5, 2016: Australia Week 17

We didn't do anything too wild this week, so I'll just give you a better idea of the culture. 
Culture within the mission is largely influenced by New Zealanders because there are so many of them. Lots of missionaries from New Zealand serve in Australia, and heaps missionaries from Australia serve in New Zealand, so they just trade islands for 2 years. I reckon our mission is about 50% islanders (New Zealand, Fiji, Tahiti, etc.) about 35% white people (America, Canada, etc.) and about 15% Filipinos. Since our mission is so influenced by islanders, the food in the house disappears in several days when it should last a week, and the mentality of "what's yours is mine, and what's mine is also mine" is pretty prevalent hahaha. 
Culture in Katherine is pretty different from my last area. Most of the aboriginals live in the housing trust areas which are pretty run down (probably comparable to the ghetto in America). Some of them are more educated and speak clearer English, but that's pretty rare. The white Aussies are more educated and live in nicer homes but they're prideful as. I always tell my Filipino companion that I like visiting the Filipinos in Katherine best because they're humble--white people are ridiculously prideful.
The aboriginals are more humble than the white people but they have lots of Word of Wisdom issues and are not raised the way they deserve to be, so it's difficult to help them get to baptism. The alcohol seems to do something different to them.  We do have some solid aboriginals here though, like Brotha Friday.
This week we taught Jared and Sherry again. They were more open hearted this time; however, they are extremely nitpicky about wording in the Book of Mormon and they always smash us with something new, but we have been able to come back and answer all of their questions. For example, they'll say that Mormon 8:12 says the Book of Mormon has "imperfections" in it, and since we don't know which teachings are true and which are "imperfections", we shouldn't trust the Book of Mormon. Usually when they smash us they use something like that which shows their lack of understanding. My companion and I discussed with them Ether 12:23-27 to show them that "imperfections" are not imperfections in doctrine, but imperfections in writing. The prophets weren't perfect men and neither were they perfect writers, but the Book of Mormon is 100% true. 

Quick spiritual thought for yous: Prayer keeps a man from sin; sin keeps a man from prayer. Ain't that the truth. 
I have a second email with more photos. Since videos have been too large to send in the past, I'll probably make a drop box for them and send the link. 

-Elder Koch

1. Elder Holland is the man.
3. The typical bushland around Katherine
4. My companion always puts his head in the freezer when we come back to the flat for lunch. It's been soooo hot. 
5. An aboriginal painting on the main street. 

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