French is the language of government/schools and Tahitian the language of the natives of French Polynesia.


Tahiti Papeete Mission
L'Eglise de Jesus-Christ des Saints des Derniers Jours,
Mission Mormone, BP93
(for pkgs add: Cours de L'Union Sacree)
Papeete Tahiti 98714
Polynesie Francaise

Unto the Islands of the Sea

Send forth the elders of my church unto the nations which are afar off, unto the islands of the sea; send forth unto foreign lands; call upon all nations . . . -------------------------------------------Doctrine & Covenants 133:8
Bonjour! [bon-ZHOOR]:French-------------------------IaOrana! [ee-ah oh-RAH-na]:Tahitian-------------------------Hello!
Bienvenue! [bee-ahn-vuh-new]:French-----------------------Maeva! [mah-AY-vah]:Tahitian-----------------------Welcome!


WHERE IS MY SON? June 14, 2011

No letter this week.  Perhaps the  internet on Bora is not cool this week.


Dear Family,
 I'm here serving on BoraBora. I was really sad to leave all my friends in Paea, but I'm super excited to be here. Elder Smith left this morning, so I only had 1 week to learn this area and I am with Elder Sovalini. It really is as beautiful as they say. It is a super tiny island, 30 kilometers around.  The problem here is that none of our investigators can come to church because they all work on Sundays at the hotels. The airport is on a smaller island off the coast, so when you fly in you hop on a boat and boat on to Bora and you can see the whole island. We also have a family that we teach that Smith found as he was speeding down the mountain on his bike and destroyed their dog after which the owner said that luckily he didn't hit her because she is made of metal and then Smith asked if they wanted the lessons and now they are all getting baptized. Sorry I can't write alot because the internet here is not cool and it keeps on going out, but it's beautiful and indescribable. I love my mission.
Love y'all
Love Elder Cosby C

Bora Bora is an island in the Leeward group of the Society Islands of French Polynesia, an overseas collecivity of France in the Pacific Ocean.  The island, located about 140 miles (230 kilometers) northwest of Papeete, is surrounded by a lagoon and a barrier reef.  In the center of the island are the remnants of an extinct volcano rising to two peaks: Mount Pahia and Mount Otemann.  Bora Bora is a major international tourist destination, famous for its aqua-centric luxury resorts. Produce of the island is mostly limitied to what can be obtained from the sea and the plentiful coconut trees.  According to a census performed in 2008, the permanent population of Bora Bora is 8,800.


Dear Family,
It was the best of times. .At three-thirty today I am getting on a plane to serve on Bora Bora with my best friend and favorite missionary, Elder Smith. The work here in Paea is going awesome. We had twice as many investigators at church than before. We got a new Ward mission leader and he is awesome. We went to go visit one of our contacts with him and he laughed and said, "I know him well.  We boxed together back in the day."   Another reference we went to he taught them how to prune and get alot of fruit from their lychee tree. There is not much Ceasar doesn't do. He gives us references all the time and he comes and gets all of our investigators for church when the other people won't. We have several baptisms fixed and alot of progressing investigators. I'm loving the work here and I could stay here the rest of my life.
It was the worst of times... I'm not gonna be here for any of that. I am leaving.  A centipede bit my hand while I was sleeping and it was literally the worst pain I have had in my entire life and my hand super swelled up   It still hurts where he bit me. My bike is super super broken and it's gonna be expensive to fix. 

I'm happy though.  I feel like I did my job in Paea and I'm super excited to go to Bora.  I really really love the members and investigators here and I really appreciate all of the things that they have done for me and my companions and I will miss them a lot,  but President told me that the Lord wants me to leave and I am down with that. I love my mission.  I love the Lord and I am happy.  Love Y'all
Love Elder Cosby

I'M FAT: May 24, 2011

Dear Family,
I am super fat now. I have gained 11 kilos. I don't know really how much it is but I know it's alot 'cause if a Tahitian says Wow! concerning weight that means in English "Goodness Gracious Great Balls of Fire!" but after reading a little scriptures I found that God loves us no matter how big we are and now I'm happy. We changed our PDay today because we are going to a museum and it's not open Monday. I'm super excited to go regardless of how terrible Norbert, our driver, says it is.  We had a really good experience the other day.  We had a lesson with Heimata who before told us that she couldn't pray because she knew that if she prayed she would have to get baptized. So we finished all of lesson 2 and everything was good until I asked them to come to church.   After about 5 minutes of silence she told us she was super mad at us because she wanted to come to church the last Sunday but she couldn't because she was too mad. She was mad because she prayed and she didn't get a response, so she prayed again and in her prayer for some reason she said in her prayer that she knew  that the Book of Mormon was true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. After that she called us and left messages that we had to come see her immediately or as soon as possible but the problem is that I don't know how to check messages on our phone. So she waited an entire week and finally we came and she saId "I'm super mad, but the Book of Mormon is true and I wanna get baptized."  She said that she wanted to separate from her boyfriend who isn't divorced. and then after all that she said that she wouldn't be able to go to church because they were going to some other island or something, and the whole time I was super hungry because I'm fat now and we were an hour late for our dinner. The gospel is true and it makes people wanna change and do good things.  I like that.
Love, Elder Cosby


Dear Family,
This weekend Artos got baptised and that was a nice treat. He used to be a super bad guy and now he's a super good guy and I'm really proud of him. This past week 4 people came to church and asked us if they could start the lessons.  One of them told her friends that she didn't want the lessons anymore because she wanted to be baptized right then.  Another one named Heimata told us that she can't pray about Joseph Smith because if she does she will have to get baptized and she is not ready for that. I decided that of all the problems she could have that one is not so bad. That was also a nice treat. Also the other night our neighbors gave us a guitar and ukulele concert in which I sang to them for the first time "Home on the Range" and "Deep in the Heart of Texas and they played right along note for note just as good Tahitians do. That was also a nice treat. It was a very sweet week. I love it here.  I'm pretty sure I'm gonna come back and live here.

Love y'all
Love, Elder Cosby


Hey Family, 
It was great to talk to y'all yesterday. I pretty much shared everything I had to say though. everything is going great. Arthos is preparing for his baptism Saturday.  He is super awesome. He has only a few teeth. He used to drink alot and never come home, but after his wife went to the temple he has changed  and now he is gonna get baptized if he can really stop smoking.  Mom keeps telling me to write more and describe people, so I am going to describe all the missionaries around me. Elder Saxton is my companion and he is super super tiny and his hands are super tiny and it's really noticable because he uses his hands a super lot when he talks.  A little girl asked him if he puts makeup on because it is true he has very long eyelashes and I feel like he is in a state of perpetual surprise because that is just the way his face is.  I'm super happy to be his companion. Elder B is another Elder in one of the neighboring areas. He is super skinny and tall and he has never ever smiled.  I'm super glad I'm not his companion.  Elder B's companion is Elder H.  He looks exactly what one would think a gorilla would look like if he started walking on two legs and got shaved.  I think Darwin may have been on to somthing.   I have to play basketball with him after this. I am scared.   There are some things that just can't be described in words like these elders and investigators   Yall'll just have to wait to get some pictures. Well the guy that is giving us a ride is leaving and I don't want to walk. Love y'all
Love Elder Cosby

Missions are awesome and important and life changing and indescribable!

MOTHERS' DAY CALL: May 8, 2011

Elder Cosby's Mother's Note: We were in Nebraska at Elder Cosby's brother's home on Mother's Day.    Mission protocol in his mission is for parents to initiate a call on the designated day.  It was 5:30 am in Tahiti. 11:30 in Nebraska.  Elder Cosby's companion sleepily passed the phone to Elder Cosby.  I asked him if he wanted us to call him when we got home at 11:30 that night to talk or if he wanted to talk now while we were at Jon's house so he could say hi to him.  He very sleepily said, "I wanna talk to my brother too, just let me wake up."

We put the phone on speakerphone on the living room floor in Jon's house and asked our missionary questions and listened to his stories.  What a beautiful spirit filled the room as he spoke of the  people he loved and the beautiful island culture he was experiencing.  He bore his testimony of the gospel and spoke of his love for the Savior and the work he was doing.  I asked him to sing to me in Tahitian.  He said, "What?"  and I said just a line or two, just start something out, don't you sing in Tahitian in church?  You don't have to sing a whole hymn, just a line or two.  So, he said, ok, just one line, and started, probably rather reluctantly (who likes to sing impromptu solos to an audience on the phone?) to sing in the beautiful language of the French Polynesian islands . . . and then he sang another line, and then he became more confident and sang strongly, all the way through the song to the end.  We all recognized it immediately from the tune.  One of the most memorable and special mothers' day gifts I will ever have I am sure was hearing my son, whose voice I had so longed to hear during twinges of anxiousness and uncertainty during the previous weeks of tsunami storms and weeks with no communication arriving from him . . . to hear him sing so movingly in a language of  many vowels and gentle grace a beloved song, one of the first songs our children learn to  sing, full of  gospel truth.

He sang, "I Am a Child of God"


 Dear Family,
So I'm not dead, everything was just closed for Easter,  but everything is going great and I love y'all. That's all that is really important since my time runs out on this computer super soon.
Who is Kelan marrying?  That's all pretty exciting stuff.   Who ever said that old people are boring. Thanks for the updates,  tell Joseph not to get too into this band thing if he's not reading his scriptures and getting good grades.
Thanks for the update Mom. Keep having an exciting diligent life. It shows.  Not many moms can say that they had 6 eagle scouts and 5 boys on missions. (One to go) Thank you so much for what you have done for our family and also the things that you have shared with other families in your callings. I'm trying to live up to the family name that rests over my heart at all times to show my thanks for the things that I learned and the things that I didn't want to learn but apply in my life as a missionary. There are thousands of people here who are very grateful for your example. Thank you so much from me and the thousands of others all over the world that you have brightened with the gospel light. I love you.
Love, Elder Cosby


I love my mission. I'm not coming home, but I will call y'all on mothers' day.  I don't know exactly what day that is or time or stuff . . . The investigator of the month is Atos. His wife (a member) had a dream that he would baptize his son and ever since they have been non stop praying and reading the scriptures and fasting to help him stop drinking and smoking which he has done over the course of just a few weeks.  He has learned to love the scriptures and his family, which has led him to be able to completely stop sinning in only a few months. I love Atos. He is one of my best friends.  I am glad to be here and be able to teach him.
Love yall
Love,  Elder Cosby


Dear Family, 
I belong to the Church of Jesus Christ really means alot more than I realized. It means we believe in miracles and revelations and all of those kinds of things.  Me and my companion have been seeing alot of miracles this week. Me and Saxton have been having new investigators falling from the sky.   The most awesome thing is that all of them are Tahitian lessons,  so I am really actually starting to become fluent in Tahitian.   3 of our heaven sent investigators said before we even started the lessons that they wanted to get baptized.  I'm starting to understand what "the feild is white already to harvest" means.  I really like teaching the gospel.  People are so happy when you tell them gospel truths.  I'm happy when i tell people gospel truths. The mission is awesome. Everyone should go on a mission 4 or 5 times.
Love yall
Love, Elder Cosby


Dear Family,
After a 3 week vacation, I'm  back in my home in Paea, after being disappointed from not receiving my companion Wednesday because the airplane was broken Wednesday.  I got him late Thursday night. His name is Elder Saxton from Idaho. He worked on his Grandpas mink farm before his mission where his heart became stone cold from killing and skinning thousands of minks, but luckily the warm welcome of the Tahitian sun and people melted his heart and burned his face so that we could get to work right away-- two red-faced warriors.  Elder Saxton is super awesome!  He already is starting to understand and he can speak pretty well and everyone loves that he is a farmer as long as you don't try to explain to them what a mink is and confuse them. I don't even know what a mink is. I tried to get the people here to feed him fafaru his first day but they refused to give us fafaru at night saying that it was "too heavy," but instead they gave us sea urchin crawfish (they are like 2 feet long here), clam, and taro. Luckily Saxton has a strong stomach.
Love y'all
Love, Elder Cosby


Dear Family,,
 Everything is  going really well.  I'm getting my companion tomorrow so everything will be
 normal, but I will have to get used to having a companion since I got used to
 not having a companion.  He's a new guy straight from America I don't know who
 yet, that's all President told me, but Elder Punu is gonna be a grandpa right
 before he leaves and I'm going to see how difficult it was for him to train
 me. We went to a bookstore and I saw a bunch of books about tahiti fishes
and plants and cooking that I wanted to buy, but they were super duper
expensive so I just bought a map.
 Love you
 Love, Elder Cosby

SORRY AGAIN: March 28, 2011

Dear Family,
Sorry I haven't been able to write very much during these past couple weeks, but everything is going super good. So we baptized Norma and Jean-Daniel,  and over the course of the lessons they changed a lot.  Our zone leader thought we were messing with him when we told him how much.

Also, I haven't had a companion for 3 weeks and not much work has gotten done in my area.  I hope my new companion says, "It's like you haven't done anything here for the past couple of months, what's the deal?" So I can laugh and say, "Exactly,"  but actually these past three weeks were really cool because I did a lot of splits with the ward missionaries and pretty much that means here the former missionaries.  I learned alot from them, but this last week they all went to BYUH so I had no one to help me with my work and both of the zone leaders got sick, so I learned alot about scriptures and languages. I hope more exciting things happen next week so I can write y'all exciting things, but sitting in the back of the zone leaders car all day is the opposite of exciting. 
Love y'all
Love Elder CosbyC

SORRY : March 21, 2011

Dear Family, 
Sorry that I have no time to write again,  but I love y'all and I'm  gonna get a companion on the 29th.  Everything is going good.  The gospel is true.  I love y'all.
Love, Elder Cosby


Dear Family,  
Well I just wrote y'all an awesome email but the computer is terrible
and I lost it but I gotta go so I can't rewrite it,  but just know that I
love y'all.  I safely hid from the tsunami in "the jungle" and saw miracles.
From our Mothers' Day phone conversation:  The island area where Elder Cosby is serving did not experience the devastating destruction that Japan did from the tsunami as it's full force did pass by the island of Tahiti, but they were in a severe weather alert and experienced high winds and other exciting/unsettling weather patterns.

IN A PICKLE: March 7, 2011

 Dear Family,
So I forgot my planner where I usually write reminders of what I should write y'all so sorry if this email is boring. So my companion  is getting transferred early so I am going to live with the zone leaders while trying to do my lessons and things in my area with ward missionaries and leaders because we don't get new missionaries until the end of the month to replace my companion so I'm gonna have to do that for three weeks. I'm gonna be all alone for three weeks, but it's all good, I was actually praying to change companions but I wasn't expecting that kind of response. On the bright side of things,  our stake conference got cancelled so they decided to give us talks in all of our wards. One of the things I remember from the MTC is a guy told us is that when you can tell a joke in the language, you know that you are awesome in that language.  I proved him wrong.  I don't really speak Tahitian and I totally cracked a joke in my talk and everyone just died laughing and we have got a whole bunch of references since. 
 Love y'all 
Love Elder Cosby  
er Cosby
Dad,  you are 100% right about island warrior spirits that need to be channeled.  It is super cool to see how everyone has different strengths and weaknesses.  Here their strength is charity and love and forgiveness to a degree unheard of in America.  I'm really thankful to be serving here and get to see what real charity is. It will bless my life forever,  the examples of my companions.

Mom, the coin I sent the Activity Day Girls that they asked about is 1 pacific frank, which  is about 1 cent.  I'm pretty sure I sent her like 1, 2 or 5 cents if it's the super light one.

SPEAKING OF TEMPLES: February 28, 2011

Dear Family, 
 I went to the temple this week for the first time in Tahiti. The temple is the same here as home but just in French.  I was kinda hoping that there would be some kind of tribal ceremony and torch and tribal design decorations.  Unfortunately this wasn't the case. Although a little disappointed going to the temple was an awesome experience as always. Go to the temple,  It will be awesome for you. Speaking of temples,  the temple president came to our ward and spoke.  He brought his daughter and her friend and asked me to translate for them.  The temple president's wife doesn't really speak French so I got kinda lost in one of her stories . . .  I think they caught on when she said amen in the middle of my story. That is all.  Love y'all
Love Elder Cosby