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The Hau’ula 4th Ward

Had it not been for the time change, I would have heard more griping about an 8:00 am Sacrament Meeting. But since we were still all about four hours ahead of ourselves, it seemed like a leisurely morning.

The set up of the chapel, hymns-sung-a-tad-too-slow, the order of the program. You know, “the church is the same no matter where you go.” The fans filling the ceiling, the occasional lei, and the handful of men in lava lavas were the only indications that we weren’t on the mainland. At first.

But then there was the hearty “aloha!” or “good morning!” echoed by the congregation more than once in each meeting to remind you of where you were.

Apparently word of the “no mission farewells” rule hasn’t yet reached the islands, because we listened to a sweet, soon-to-be-serving young man give his going away speech — along with three of his brothers. Something I haven’t seen for some time and quite enjoyed seeing again.

Then there was the woman who opened the meeting with prayer, while a man closed. Apparently false prayer doctrine doesn’t travel across the ocean as quickly, either. How refreshing.

And as we stood after the closing hymn to sing Aloha Oi (the words were taped into the front cover of the hymn book), we knew for sure we weren’t in Kansas (or Utah) anymore.

Then there were the 400 or so people who helped all eight of us to find our various and sundry auxiliary classes. And invited us to the Mother’s and Father’s Day lau dinner on Saturday. And invited our daughter to young adult family home evening. And welcomed us and even gave us Hawaiian guest towels to remember them by.

As we drove away, Alana said, “Mom, I sure hope we go back there next week.”

Thank you, Hau’ula 4th Ward for a wonderful Sabbath.

{ 13 comments… add one }

  • zmg May 22, 2007, 8:43 am

    It sounds like a great place. I have a couple of questions though about comments you made. First you said something about false doctrine and inferred it had something to do with a woman opening and a man closing the service. I don’t understand – is that wrong? Also, you made a comment about “no mission farewells” rule. What is that and why?

  • Lewis_Family May 22, 2007, 10:22 am

    Yeah, I was confused by that as well, the comment about a woman opening and a man closing. I see that happen all the time, or there will be two women who say it or whatever. There is doctrine in regards to this?

  • Alison Moore Smith May 22, 2007, 12:05 pm

    I guess I need to reword. NO, there is nothing wrong with women saying opening prayers. The handbook is clear. But some people (leaders) are under a weird impression that it is. The past THREE wards I have lived in have not allowed women to open Sacrament Meeting (two in Utah, one in Florida). I was trying to say that FALSE doctrine (the idea that women can’t open with prayer) did NOT make it’s way to Hawaii, yet. :)

    When I get home I’ll try to figure a better way to say it.

  • Lewis_Family May 22, 2007, 2:06 pm

    Ah, makes sense now.

  • mlinford May 22, 2007, 3:24 pm

    One of my most memorable meetings was in Hawaii. The people there are so amazingly loving, warm and open. It was fantastic. Now you have really made me want to go!

  • Susan M May 24, 2007, 10:40 am

    Do you live in Hawaii or were you visiting? I lived in Hauula for about 4 months back in 1988, when I was first married. I can’t remember what ward we were in. Mostly what I remember, besides the “Brothers and Sisters, Aloha!” “Aloha!” (which I still miss), is how loud the Harleys were when they drove by on the Kamehameha Hwy. Drowned out the speaker.

  • Alison Moore Smith May 24, 2007, 11:15 am

    Welcome, Susan!

    I’m still here, but just visiting. (One of our authors, Susan Corpany, lives somewhere in Hawaii.)

    I think I know the building you are referring to. Drove by it yesterday. There are two buildings in Hau’ula and we attended the other,which is just off the highway, so we missed the Harley intervention. (Of course, everything out here is either on the highway or “just off” of it.)

  • Boggled May 24, 2007, 6:57 pm

    Hello! My name is Marie – and I am new to MormonMomma but I need to tell you that you reminded me of some wonderful years. My hubby and I were in the Honolulu West Stake – the Halawa Ward. And as much as I wanted to leave the island when our tour in the Navy was complete. I NOW miss terribly!

    Thanks for the memories.

    Marie

  • Alison Moore Smith May 24, 2007, 7:20 pm

    Marie, aloha! We’re glad to have you here!

    Hawaii is the place I came to believe all my husband’s stories about his mission in Samoa. Deep down I didn’t really believe that an entire group of people could be as he described. I chalked it up the to a young man romanticizing his beloved mission experience. When I first came here five years ago, I realized he had spoken complete truth.

  • Susan M May 25, 2007, 9:34 am

    My favorite places on Oahu were Laniloa Beach (aka as Bikini Beach), Kailua Beach, and Ewa Beach. I’m sure things have changed a lot since I was there, though.

    It’s a little bit different when you’re living there vs visiting, though.

  • Alison Moore Smith May 25, 2007, 11:19 am

    Susan, when I lived in Florida, the difference between the tourists and me was that I didn’t have time to go to the beach!

  • Susan M May 25, 2007, 12:05 pm

    I live in Huntington Beach, CA, now, and it reminds me a lot of Hawaii. Only way more commercial signs/advertising everywhere (but way less discrimination against white people).

    I go to the beach pretty often still—probably comes from growing up in Seattle!

  • mlinford May 25, 2007, 11:05 pm

    Alison, will you bring us all something home that smells like plumeria? :)

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