Alright first of all… I am SOOO excited right now because Mikelle got into BYU!!!! Go Mikelle! So excited for BYU with my two sisters! Sidney is still busy planning the wedding so everyone get excited for that! Love you girls!
And I’m also just excited because it was a pretty great week! We worked pretty hard this week and huge big miracles haven’t been happening too much, but lots and tons of little ones have been and it’s amazing how many blessings and miracles happen in this work. During weekly planning this week, Sister Ril and I just realized how many investigators we now have! When I got here it really was like one 10 year old girl. Not tooooo many are progressing right now but there’s a lot of potential for all these people. It’s amazing how the Lord leads missionaries to people that are prepared.
Sometimes though some of the most rewarding times on a mission are when you can see how you’ve affected companions! Hopefully I’ve been able to help my companions a little bit and I’ve definitely learned lots from them. But this week Sister Ril told me that she’s so happy we’ve been exactly obedient and she really believes that that’s the reason we have so many investigators now. Mom, she loves the quote I still have hung up in my room, “Obedience brings blessings, exact obedience brings miracles.” True!
Random story: We’ve been teaching this older couple (60s) and when we teach the tatay (the brother) I almost start laughing every time! He really really loves to read which is great. But whenever we ask him to read a verse, he’ll read it and just keep going and going and going and going… And we’ll try to stop him but he’ll start just reading in his head. Haha yes we need to read the Book of Mormon but hopefully he’ll be better this week about listening to our teaching too. I invited him like 3 times to be baptized but I’m not sure if he really got what I was asking him because he was reading. Yay Tatay Domingo!
Moral family! Well… we hiked the mountains again (this time with a branch missionary brother because we were told we needed a guy to go with us). Well Brother Jose wasn’t toooo happy we came because he was embarrassed we caught him drinking. He told us he doesn’t think he can avoid the temptation and that he’ll loose all his friends if he stops drinking with them. Well he cooled down a bit to let us teach and he ended up committing to read the Book of Mormon. Sister Maritez read and she committed to baptism! We’re really trying though to focus a lot on Jose so he’ll be a good support for her and so that the whole family will be active! They didn’t go to church yesterday Clarise and Tessa (the branch missionaries) are amazing though! They hiked up there before church to help them with all their kids and then they ended up telling them, “next time na lang” or just next time. So hopefully next week they really will go! But we really appreciate all the amazing work by Clarise and Tessa. We had a member working with us almost everyday this week!
We went tracting this week! Yes I’m a missionary.. I should probably be doing that a lot.. Well idk but just in all my areas we usually have a place to go and a back up for every hour of the day. I’ve hardly ever scheduled tracting time. There are lots of missionaries that do here but idk maybe it’s just how I do missionary work. Well this week we decided to go tracting close to the church so that if we found some investigators, they wouldn’t have a problem about not having money to get to church. We talked to some people and didn’t have too much success. So we started talking to these 3 guys and slowly two of them left until it was just John John. Well he wasn’t too interested too. When we finished talking to him though, he walked on this path back to where a bunch of houses were so we started following him. We weren’t really trying to follow him but he probably thought we were so creepy haha. Well he went one way and we went the other and we told him we weren’t trying to follow him. So we walked a few houses down and there was this lady outside with a baby. We started talking to her and she was nice and let us come in and teach her the first part of lesson one. Well during the lesson, she said, “oh, here comes my son! He’s the one that just got married.” So we turned around and it was John John! Haha so Sister Ril said, “Hello po Brother John John!” Hahaha soooo funny. Probably funnier if you were there but the nanay and John John started laughing too. Later though Sister Ril and I decided that we were like a scary nightmare that wouldn’t go away. Maybe he’ll take it as a sign though and listen to us next time;).
Interviews were this week! So fun to see Sister and President Reeder. And of course, we got a chocolate chip cookie! Those things taste 20 times better when you’re in the Philippines and you never get them. I also got some mail!!! So fun to get cards and letters so thank you everyone! But oh my goodness Sister Richmond is the BEST!!! I took a picture of it, but she made this cute book of remembrance thing and she bought me a garlic press!!! Haha so thoughtful! And she just emailed me and told me that Tigaon is booming! She’s working SO hard (33 lessons) and they have some investigators on track to be baptized!
Okay so our investigators here in Pamplona! Like I said, we don’t have too many progressing investigators… But we do have one golden! Brother Allan! I think I mentioned him last email but wow he is amazing! He still hasn’t gone to church but I’m almost sure he’ll go next week. Pray that he’ll go! He really wants to but sometimes it’s just hard to get them to go the first time. Well he told us yesterday that he used to drink once a week with his friends but that after our first lesson with him, he just decided to stop! We still haven’t taught him word of wisdom but he said that now he decided he’d rather read the Book of Mormon. Uhhh BEST choice! He also told us he wants to finish the Book of Mormon and that he just really wants to learn a lot. Well when we first got there last night, there was another guy there. Apparently Allan has been trying to get all of his friends to listen to us and so he got his friend, Ronnell to come listen:) He’s a father of 4 children, works except for on Sundays and he might come to church with Allan next week! That would be amazing, but you never know with church. Hopefully someday. Well anyways Allan is so on fire and he is referring really great people to teach! There is a huge need for priesthood in this area so this is an answer to prayers! We’re praying that things will keep moving forward:).
So yes such a great week! Can’t believe how fast the weeks go sometimes. I love being a missionary! I love being a white American who can speak Tagalog (and now a good amount of Bicol.. but I still nose bleed when someone speaks a lot of Bicol.. Shoot you guys don’t know nose bleed. Ask someone that’s been to the Philippines haha.) And I love this amazing Gospel of Jesus Christ. Heavenly Father has a plan for all of us and He will help us to be happy and prepare to return to Him if we do the things were supposed to… So everyone follow the commandments because I promise you, you’ll be truly happy no matter what hard things you experience. The gospel is about hope and I love being able to share that with some many people that need that here. Love you all too!!! Thanks to everyone who reads my ridiculously long emails. You’re the best!
Gotta love chocolate chip cookies…the best ever!
From Sister Richmond! I love her!!!
From Jaycee’s mom: So I heard that if you put a picture of Jesus or Mary on the cards that the missionaries will have a better chance of getting their mail. So I printed one out and put it on the back. I guess the elders from the office notice something I did not…Jesus is not holding a lamb but a dinosaur! I am so embarassed. I guess all of the elders in the office took a picture of it because they thought it was so funny and thought I did it on purpose.