This was quite the busy week. We went to Puerto Princessa from about
Wednesday and then finally got back to the crib in Rizal Monday in the
afternoon. Lemme start with this, WE STAYED IN A HOTEL THAT PRESIDENT
AND SISTER OSTLER BOUGHT AND IT HAD HOT SHOWERS AND AIRCON (air conditioning). IT WAS A
DREAM COME TRUE. My whole zone here in the Narra zone, got to stay in
this hotel. EACH COMPANIONSHIP HAD A ROOM TO THEMSELVES. There are 11
companionships, all of us Elders, so it was only slightly roudy at
night time. It was awesome though. I think I took a total of 6 showers
within those 2 nights we stayed there; they were all about 20-40
minutes long hahahah. It was AWESOME. Me and Elder Bolnick were
talking (He was in the MTC with me and is from South Jordan) and we
talked about how a hot shower is absolutely taken for granted where we
are from in the states. It is SO true. I miss the warm showers… So
that was fine. Also this hotel was about a 5 minute walk to the mall,
we had permission to go eat there and buy things that we need. So of
course I bought American chocolate and stuff that I NEED. That was
good. Nice to see some Vans shoes stores and stuff just like the old
days. We had lots of fun.
Now, for the serious stuff. The reason we
went to Puerto (Which was 5 hours of travel if you wanted to know) was
because of our Christmas party and zone conference! We had ZC on
Thursday. Elder Shayne M. Bowen of the Seventy came and did the
conference. If you are assigned on the mainland, there are about 7
zones at the conference. Here on Palawan, there are only 2 zones. So
that was about 40 missionaries total, so a very personal setting. The
topics for the conference were, The Abrahamic Covenant, The Oath and
Covenant of the Priesthood, The Baptismal Covenant, and the House of
Israel. VERY DEEP DOCTRINE if you ask me. Elder Bowen is a boss. I
will just put it like that. He tied the Abrahamic Covenant to waking
up on time as missionaries. Like, he related ALL of it to us as
missionaries. It was crazy. He made some changes to our mission,
nothing major. Actually one thing major. EVERYDAY we are to have 30
OYMS. For here in Rizal, that was the goal for our area EVERY WEEK.
Just because there are so few people here. But Elder Bowen said
something interesting (The spirit flooded the room again when he said
this). He said this, “I promise, In the name of Jesus Christ, that if
EVERY companionship in this mission will do this, this mission will
DOUBLE in baptisms.” That’s what he said. That is going to be so hard.
But I know we can do it. It is going to be difficult, but worth it.
We also had our Christmas party with President Ostler, his wife, Elder Bowen,
his wife, and all the Palawan missionaries. It was amazing. The food
was KILLER. We had Letson! (Hindi ko naalala yung spelling) But it was
a full sized pig! Mashed potatoes, rice, uhh fish, umm just like a
massive feast. It was amazing. President Ostler paid for all of it. We
also got mission aprons! They are black and they have a name tag sewed
on them with our names! I have a picture… I actually have lots of
pictures and videos of this whole week, but the internet won’t let me
send pics right now. So that’s no good. I have a new hard drive (that
I bought in Puerto for a solid $50) that I can put all my pictures on
it. On top of that my comp gave me some anti-virus protection for it
so I won’t have any issues with losing stuff for the rest of my
I am a little sad I can’t send pics. I have lots, last week we went to the
beach. I WAS IN LOVE. I waded through the water up to just above my
knees. Wow it was gorgeous. I have some great pics of some members and
stuff that went with us. But those can wait ;) It was awesome. I want
to come back to Rizal and do ALL the things we can’t do as
missionaries. Specifically go swimming, but I guess that can wait.
I am trying to think of all the other stuff that happened… It was just a
crazy week with a lot that happened. I got to hang out with some of my
homies (the other elders) from the other zone who I haven’t seen in a
while. One of them is Elder E’ teaki. He is from Oregon and is Tongan.
He is a little younger than me in the mission, but he has a full ride
scholarship to play defensive line at Oregon, so if that doesn’t
describe how big he is, then I don’t know what to tell you. Me and
him are pretty close, he is in a very secluded area as well on the
northern part of Palawan. It was great to see him. All in all a great
week, I love missionary work, but it was a nice time to relax and
spend time with the other missionaries and feel the Christmas spirit.
I already can’t wait for the next Christmas party next year!
Now, about our investigators Sister Riza and her kids didn’t go to church.
It is very hard to explain her situation, but it’s a frustrating one.
I didn’t know someone could come up with excuses like that to not go
to church… but we are trying. We have been teaching this other girl,
her name is Jho. She is a referral from an awesome family here in
Rizal. The only problem is, is that we can only teach her once a week.
She has work, but she goes to church almost every Sunday! And she is
progressing and understands! It is usually only me who teaches her. We
do splits on Sundays. So Elder Garol goes with a priesthood holder in
the branch, and some members and then same for me. So Elder Garol
stays close to the market, and I take members like 7 kilometers away.
We always teach her, and my Tagalog isn’t half bad when I teach her!
If I have some trouble, members will help me, which is awesome. I
think she will be baptized. Maybe in January if we can get all the
lessons done. Hopefully I don’t transfer. I told Pres. Ostler I want
to stay for another transfer so we will see what happens. Transfer day
is January 13 so we will see. I want to stay!
I also heard that all of my previous companions in the mission are now Zone Leaders. Elder
Leofo, Elder Baquiran, and then Elder Sacay is my ZL right now. So
that was cool to find out. That was about the extent of my week.
I guess we need to talk about skyping? I would love for my mother to
give me the details on that so I can schedule with the guy. I will be
skyping at like the perfect time so all the family at the house can be
there, I just need a time. So yeah. I am looking forward to that. And
then mom, since I can’t send this email to all the people I usually
do, cause the internet is not very good, but here is what you asked for, kind of
a thank you thing to all the people who've been so supportive. It’s a thank you in
English/Tagalog. Here it is:
Thank you all for your loving support! If
it wasn’t for all of you, I wouldn’t be here doing the work of the
Lord and blessing the people of the Philippines! Salamat po para sa
lahat mga bagay na ibinigay sa akin. Ang mga damit, encouragement, and
yung mapagmahal para sa akin! Kung wala po kayo, wala ako dit. Simple
Merry Christmas to you all!
I miss ko kayo!
Mahal kp po kayo.
That’s all for this week folks!
Philippines, Manila Mission, Earth