Aloha from Kapolei!
Well that's where I am right now. I'm still in Makaha in the Makakilo zone, in a far away (kinda run down) part of the zone/island.
It's been a fun week. For starters, when a senior graduates over here, all of them get banners that show their huge poster-size picture along with congrats. The families hang them up on the fence around the school. So the school right where are (Waianae High School) is choking with banners all around it. I was thinking to myself, that it would be weird to have a huge picture of my face on a poster out for everyone to see.... haha oh well. Our ward held a senior graduation party for seniors who are graduating, here at the chapel. There were about 7 seniors I think. The Waianae HS has about 200 or so kids graduating. I'm sure that sounds nice compared to my senior class of 702. But there are lots of different schools that the kids go to. One thing I've noticed is that parents will send their children to super far away schools to get them to the school they want them to attend. I know of one of the seniors who catches a bus to get to Kamehameha HS about an hour away every day. I'm told that's pretty normal. I guess some parents just don't want their kids in certain schools. Same as home I suppose.
Our investigator with a baptismal date is supposed to have quit smoking by now. We're going to see her tomorrow, so we will follow up on that. It's funny seeing her at church though. She'll greet everyone at the door, and hand out programs, like it's her calling. Then there's another lady that doesn't come to church, but teaches the cub scouts every week. I love seeing less actives and nonmembers fulfill callings. We're excited to see Dolly (our investigator) progress. Her son has been a help in that as well. He's been a member for a few years, but he knows his stuff. Probably a lot better than I knew gospel topics when I was his age.
One of our days we were dropped off at one end of our area by the elders in the next area over, in order to make an appointment. But then they weren't able to pick us up to get us back to our bikes, so we spent a little while walking back, and we were able to talk to lots of people on the way. Some girl was just waiting at the bus stop and she actually stopped us and asked us what our church was about. Then another man stopped us too! He gave us water and let us talk with him. That guy told us to come by any time and he'll share whatever he is cooking. Some people are too nice it seems.
We went out with one of our members to dinner. He was taking Dolly out for her birthday dinner and invited the missionaries too! We went to Ruby Tuesday's, sooooooo it was a nice dinner. I had the salad bar stuff, with an entrée of chicken with tomatoes and some sauce stuff on top. I picked the sides of broccoli and a baked potato. Dessert was cheesecake with raspberry sauce on top. Lots of the members have been treating us well. One family took us to the grocery store and got us a bunch of food. So I've been making pancakes a lot of mornings. We need more milk though.... that's one thing that can get expensive. On the big island it was about 7 or 8 dollars a gallon. Here it's more like 5 to 6 dollars. But we got a pack of oreos too, so we should get some milk to go with them.
This morning we went on a hike up to the top of a mountain that separates the different valleys. There were pillboxes from old war stuff up there. If I figure out how to send pictures I'll try. One of the elders that came with me and my comp actually sprained his ankle right as we got to the car at the bottom. Sooo now he's in a ankle brace. By the way, that elder that hurt his ankle has been around me my whole mission almost. He started in Maui, a transfer before me. Then he went to Honolulu, where I followed him, then to Hilo, where I followed him again, than to Makakilo, where I am now. So I've been following him everywhere. Wherever he goes next we decided is where I'm going too. So I hope he heads to Molokai. That's where Elder Kiaha is from!
As far as your question goes, baptism for people who cannot understand it's importance is not required. Somewhere in the chapters of Moroni in the BoM is a scripture reference. I can't remember exactly where it is without the book right in front of me. But if someone is capable of understanding it and making that choice for themselves, it is necessary. Hope that helps.
Congrats on the teams going to state though! That's exciting for the school to be going places. Hope all goes well. Keep going strong. I feel like time here is flying by. I'm about at 15 months now, so almost 9 months left. Werid to think about that. haha
Love you mostest!