Monday, October 28, 2013

10/28/13 Happy Halloween!

Mga Pamilya at Kaibigan ko!

So this week was not super eventful, but a couple exciting things happened! First, we got Taysan back in our area! I was happy about that. Many of my favorite families and investigators are up there, so I am excited to visit them again! I also had my first senior companion experience this week! We had exchanges and the Sister Training leader decided to put me with her companion who is new and also a foreigner, so basically I led as far as the language. It actually went fine though! We had fun and the language wasn't a major problem. We were able to tract a super nice couple that I am excited to go back to. I think their goal is for one of us to marry their son, but I think that will change when we start teaching them! They agreed to read the pamphlet we left with them and said we were welcome back any time!
Now for the best news of the week! I think this was the best lesson of my mission so far, and it was even during exchanges, so no fluent Tagalog speaker-except for the member present! It was with John! We were super bold in answering many of his questions about baptism and he really opened up! So first when we asked him how his reading in the Book of Mormon went, he said that he knows that the book is true!!!! Then when we asked him how he was feeling about baptism he said he is 50/50. He said he knows that this is a very serious decision and he doesn't want to make the wrong choice. He also said there is a lot of pressure from him parents to be a strict catholic. We asked him how he felt about our message though and our baptism and he said he feels this feeling in his heart like it is full whenever we teach him or he prays or he reads the Book of Mormon. He said is trying to get an answer, but doesn't feel sure yet. We explained that prayers are answered through the Holy Ghost and to keep praying. He also told us during the lesson that he tells his wife everything we teach him and she is supportive. We are going to try and get missionaries to go to their house because it isn't in our area. For now though President Guanzon said to teach John at their house because he is there during proselyting hours. At the end of the lesson we all knelt and he prayed so sincerely. He asked so many questions about baptism and the spirit was so strong!!! I know that Heavenly Father is answering his prayers and he is receiving answers! I can't wait to go back this week and teach him!
What else...Oh! I saw my first open casket! So our investigators that are all sisters- their dad died. We went to go teach them and they said their dad passed away and then I guess here it is common courtesy to pay your respects by walking through their house (where they keep the casket with the body in it for at least a week). It was a bit unnerving. But I did not want to offend I stood there with my companion and talked to the sisters and stared at the body. My companion said I will probably experience that a lot here!
This week I realized how fast the time is going and how thankful I am for the knowledge I have gained so far about the gospel. I am so thankful for how much my testimony has grown in the last 4.5 months. I know I would not be who I am right now without my mission! I really am so thankful for it. It may be hard, but it is happy and fun too and I learn so much each day! 

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!! Here in the Philippines they celebrate 3 days of the dead where they sleep at the graves of their ancestors and eat a lot of food. Us missionaries have early curfew, so I will be making Chili for the other Sisters in my apartment and wishing they had pumpkins here. Anyway, have a good week and a Happy Halloween! Have fun watching scary movies and going to haunted houses! Two of my favorite things! I LOVE YOU ALL!!!

-Sister Gardner

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