Monday, 28 December 2015

2nd Christmas in the Philippines!

Week 57
28th December 2015



Not too much to say about this week, besides we didn't work that much. The Zone Conference was awesome, the Skype was the highlight, and the Christmas party was good. We got to eat a lot at the Christmas party, I cleaned up 3 plates I think, and the food was nice. There was a lot of games played, and I participated and had fun!


We have a young couple that are investigating the church, and they are what we would call "GOLDEN". They read the Book of Mormon, they already have a start of a testimony that the Book of Mormon is true, and to top it off, they came to church yesterday! When they rolled up to church yesterday, albeit a little late, I was smiling like a little child who just got chocolate. They have a date set for February 6, 2016 and I should still be here. So, if you can't tell, I am pretty excited!

We also have another lady who should be getting baptized on January 30, unless something tragic happens. She is just as golden. Comes to church all the time, came to the Ward Christmas party on Saturday night, and reads every day. Miracles are truly happening in this area, and I feel that I finally am making up for the first 9 months of my mission when I had ZERO baptisms.

The members are really keen to get into working with us from the turn of the new year too. I have found out all the availability of the Priesthood, and hopefully this will bring only more success. I feel like if we work hard, and work well with the members, that the area of Gumaca will become a fruitful area for missionary work. I really want to set it up for the missionary who will come in and replace me. With the way the area is going, I could easily stay here for 7-9 months, but I think I will be out after 6.

Our attendance at church was the highest it's ever been yesterday, we had 57! I was so surprised, and even though it's Christmas, I will work harder to keep the attendance up at that level, and even push it higher towards 100. If only people realized how important it is to take the sacrament every week, and what Christ did for us, then I am 100% sure we would have such a higher attendance, sometimes I feel like people forget that, and I won't deny it, I do it too.

This week should be a lot better week than this last week, with a full week of work, and the turn of the new year coming ever closer. 4 more days until 2016, that's crazy! I'm really keen to smash the next 10 months, and let time fly by. Ever since I hit the 1 year mark, time has just gone and disappeared, and I don't know where it's gone.










video




Monday, 21 December 2015

Post Typhoon Update!

Week 56
22nd December 2015


The storm was alright, we just had lots of rain, we did have a bit of wind, but nothing damaging so all is good in my area. No need to get down and dirty giving service. Me and my companion were just in the chapel for 2 nights, then we could go home. Power was on, water was on, so it wasn't bad at all in our area. Mindoro got smashed, people died in Mindoro, and one of my batch, Elder Raymundo, told me that the Branch President of my last area, where he is now, lost their house. Lots of things happened in Mindoro. I saw it on the news in a members house. Just wish I was back in Pola and could help out right now.

Zone Conference was only yesterday. We traveled late on Sunday night, because we had a lot of appointments, and we slept in Lucena. The conference started at 9AM, and it was awesome! Loved the conference, and catching up with tonnes of missionaries. I didn't realize how many people I knew. We had games too, and that was funny as. Food was mean too. Had a whole pig on a table, with tonnes of other stuff, so I was heaps full after 2 plates.

Training is going okay. I'm doing everything I can to help my companion learn to speak Tagalog. We studied it up on Saturday, about things we can do to help him improve. It should only get better, and one thing is he thinks he is a lot worse than he really is. I told him he needs to practice speaking Tagalog to the Philippino missionaries, and it will be a lot easier from there.

Other than that, this week should be full on work tomorrow, Thursday, and Sunday. I'm looking forward to the Ward Christmas Party, which should be fun, and lots of food too, so can't complain. 

I'm actually looking forward to New Years, because I want to get some fireworks and light them up on the night, but we'll so how that goes. We usually stay up playing games and eating. Still got all those games but we only play uno though. It's THE GAME in our zone right now.

We had a Ward Council on Sunday too (finally), and it was good. I realized that the ward is more willing to help than I thought, so from now on the work should go really well. We also took out Joshua, one of my recent converts to work, and he loves working with us after one day. He wants to work with us every day! It's awesome, so we will be having him work with us more often now.

Well, that's all the news we have right now. We have a baptism on January 30. It should have been on January 2, but due to some things that need to be done on our part, and things done on the part of our investigator, we moved it back, but our investigator is really excited. The first time we invited her to church in November, and she hasn't missed a Sunday since! We're also hoping to have 3 more baptisms on the 30th too, 3 children of a less-active family.

For Christmas day we were told we could go anywhere in our area to visit families and they will feed us so will probably be all over the place.















Saturday, 19 December 2015

Typhoon

Week 55
14th December 2015


So.. yeah we have got a typhoon rolling through our area tomorrow, we will be re-located today to another area as we are too close to the ocean. Have to call President later to find out where we are going. Our zone will probably be the most affected as we are all on a little peninsula. Looking forward to it, first proper storm in my mission! 

The work was good this week otherwise, we were able to teach a lot of lessons, and take my companion to get to know the area. 

My companion is really struggling with the language, and having trouble memorising. But, I'm keeping on doing what I do, working and trying my best to help him. Yesterday we just went over learning how to pronounce the Tagalog alphabet and the vowels.

Like I said the work has been good. We were able to have some success with numbers, but numbers don't matter too much to me. I'm just at the point where I'm just working to do what I'm supposed to do, and to invite others to come unto Christ. If at the end of the day they don't want to, well yeah I feel bad for them, but there are a lot more people out there to share our message with, can't get down on that stuff and let it bother me.

This coming week was supposed to be good, but we'll be out of work from tonight until at least Thursday. It just depends on how bad we get hit, and what the conditions are like after the storm passes.

We're not in our area so have to head back to our flats shortly to pack - just clothes and food for 3 days... power and water will most likely be out. We will probably be here in somewhere in Lopez though.








Sunday, 13 December 2015

New Companion

Week 54
07th December 2015


Update from being sick last week - Yeah, so I was feeling so good I didn't even go to the hospital, and I don't regret it. My health has been on the up since Monday and I've gained a lot of the weight back that I lost, so all is well with me and my health. I was thinking about the hospital while in the house and decided I didn't need to go. I've barely ever visited a doctor in my life and I've been alright, so why go now?

Wednesday me, Elder Snyder, and Elder Santos took off to San Pablo to sleep there for the night. We hit the mall and ate, then went for a little look around. I ended up buying another cardigan, lol. We stayed in San Pablo 4th ward apartment for the night. And then came the day... 

Thursday morning I said goodbye to Elder Snyder, who is off to Mindoro, then got ready to go pick up my new companion. So, there were 3 foreigner trainers, and 3 new foreigner missionaries. Yep, the 2 Samoans (Me and Elder Nikau) got the 2 Americans, and the 1 American trainer got the 1 Fijian missionary. 

My companion's name is Elder Rasmussen, and he's from Utah... He's about a month older than me in age, and he will be great to train with. 

How about, I gave him the worst start to his mission. I left the apartment keys in San Pablo, and we had to go sleep in Lopez for the night, and wait for the Zone Leaders to get back from San Pablo with our keys before we could get into the house!!

Friday came, the Zone Leaders got back from San Pablo early because they got the wrong week for their MLC. I took my companion to the apartment, and he unpacked. We got around to our weekly planning, and I showed him all the things he needs to know about weekly and daily planning.

The work wasn't the greatest this week, we didn't get as much done. Nearly all of our visits were with our recent converts, except when we had dinner last night with Bishop. That was the bomb! I tried to finish all the food because I was last at the table, and I almost did, except for a couple of pieces of fried chicken. I was full after that one, couldn't walk too, so I just sat there and stretched my stomach until I could walk.

This coming week is basically showing my companion around the area, finding more investigators, getting more work done, and trying to overall, build up the Gumaca Ward. 

It's been pretty hard so far in this area, and I haven't seen much growth in attendance, and our investigator attendance has dropped down to one a week, but we'll keep working hard, and trying to get work done, and share the Gospel.

Christmas zone conference is on December 22 I think, so yeah, pretty close. 

Last but not least, I got Popo and Granddad's package they sent. Much needed, especially the white shirts.

About the Skype, I'll try the morning of the 26th, I can't do it afternoon or night because our Ward Christmas party had to get postponed to the 26th from the 19th for a Stake RS activity at our chapel. I think the morning will be good, unless someone appears and wants to get baptized then, lol. I'll let you know, but 26th so far is set. 



Meet my new companion - Elder Rasmussen

Pizza Hut!


 

Thursday, 3 December 2015

SICK :(

Week 53
30th November 2015



For all the excitement for last week, nothing much happened this week. I was sick the whole week! It was so boring, all I did was sleep all day, and could barely eat because of something in my stomach. 

I came home Tuesday night from San Pablo and got a fever, a pretty high one. I had that for a couple of days, then my stomach was playing up until Saturday. I'm off to the hospital later to check if I have parasites or something.

This coming week is transfer week. My companion is off to Mindoro, in my old district. I leave to San Pablo on Wednesday to pick up my new companion on Thursday.

That last picture is egg and corned beef - just to prove I do cook!  haha.. even though it was just tip the can out and heat up!

Sorry it's short, but I was sick, and nothing happened lol.









SEE! I can cook!!!