Mga pamilya at mga kaibegan ko! Namimiss kayo (siyempre) pero, sobrang masaya ako at mahal na mahal ko ang Philippines at mga investigators namin.
So this week I had a different companion each day of the week. Two sets of Sisters from Guino Batan came to do exchanges with us and then the Masbate Sisters got stranded here after a meeting because the weather was bad and so they couldn't get back to the island so they stayed with us. It was super fun, but super crazy! So many Sisters in one apartment! So I led the area all week and had to plan lessons and where we would visit on my own. Preparing me for when my companion leaves in 2 weeks! I got to be companions with Sister Lang who is an American, who hasn't been here too much longer than me! We had so much fun! She is awesome! Sure the language was a struggle, but we figured it out. Everyone wanted to talk to us and everyone was calling out at us as we walked around. I have never had so many stares in my life. I thought it was bad before with Sister Feinga...Nope when whities unite you get the most attention.
I got to dance quite a bit this week! One morning Sister Mataele taught me how to Tahejan (butchered that spelling I'm sure) dance. I suck at it, but it was fun! Tapos, I taught some of the sisters some ballet haha. It was a good time! I miss dancing soo much! I also tried strait up sugar cane. It was interesting. Basically you suck on piece of wood and it tastes like sugar. A less active member gave us a ton, pero we don't own a machete, so it just sits there haha.
So now some updates on investigators, so JOHN! He is soo astig! He has been reading so much in the Book of Mormon and understands it and wants to be baptized really bad! Pero, the problem is he works as the Guanzons security guard while they are church so we need to figure that out. Also, he told us he is afraid to tell his wife that he has a baptisimal date because she is a very devoted Catholic. He is just so happy and he understand it all! It makes me so happy! He is really gaining a testimony! It is so cool to see someone change as a result of you teaching them! Tapos Jovalyn! So we visited her last week and told her to start reading the Book of Mormon from the beginning and to just read a little bit each night. Keep in mind she is only an 11 year old part member. So we go back and she is on page 90! Only after a week! That is more than I ever read in a week until I came on my mission. She is so adorable I can't handle it! We are seeing so many miracles in our area! We have so many investigators that are progressing and we have SO MANY less active members that have started to come back to church!
I have really been able to see the difference between testimony and conversion. Those with just a testimony may have desires to come to church and desires to follow the commandment, but without action that testimony just stays a testimony, but as they act and submit to the will of the Lord that testimony becomes true conversion. As I see less active members and even investigators come to church, read their scriptures, pray, and serve others they become converted to this gospel and converted unto the Lord and they become HAPPY! The people here have so many problems and trials, yet as they rely of the atonement and live the gospel they are happy and have the strength to endure. It is truly amazing!
I can't even describe how amazing it is to a missionary! Sure it is absolutely the hardest thing I have ever done, but it is a time I would never want to take back! First of all mission humor is great and the funniest things happen with investigators and just when you are with the other missionaries. I have experiences so much growth in such a short amount of time, and I just love living HERE in the PHILIPPINES! The most beautiful and crazy place in the world. Now that I can understand what the people we teach are saying and what they are going through, I love and care for them so much. I am anxious to go out and serve them each day! I am just happy this week and there are so many moments that happen each day that make me realize I wouldn't want to be doing anything else. Like when 15 year old Job is so sick and needs a blessing and the family first thinks to call Sister Feinga and me and we get to rally the troops and get Priesthood holders to his home to give him a blessing. It's moments like that that I am able to see the importance of being a missionary and how our service is able to bless others.
I am so happy to be a missionary! I know this church is true and I know that people NEED to hear the gospel. It is seriously so amazing to teach people about the gospel. I really feel like I am at the point in the language that I can actually say something meaningful. It is just exciting!
So yesterday I spoke in sacrament meeting about strengthening families. I had thought about it at the beginning of the week and then things got so crazy that it slipped my mind, and lets just say being a missionary has really helped me be able to talk about something without a plan. At least I had scriptures memorized from teaching about families all the time! haha I felt so bad that I had barely prepared, pero it went fine! I talked about how family scripture study, family prayer, and family home evening and how that is the foundation for strong families. As I thought about family I was just so thankful for my wonderful family. I miss you guys each day! I miss the smallest things that we would do and can't wait to do them all again, but I know that this year and a half apart will make all those things even better!
Anyway, I miss you all and I love you all! Have a great week! MAHAL KITA!