Mission Time In Cebu

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Miracles and Thanksgiving

Tears come to my eyes when I think of this week.....not tears of sadness but great grateful tears of joy. As you guys are feeling over in america this is a week of gratitude. I have seen such a miracle happen this week. Im still in awe at the grace and love of jesus christ and our father in heaven. He is showing me his power and love for his children....Thank you soo much for you letters of love. I am facing some difficulties leaving my mission. Actually its really hard, and im very emotional...these last months my heart has even grown and felt more for these people and everyone. Im thankful for your love and counsel and the mercy of God. God continues to allow me to experience precious miracles and experiences and continues to forgive me of my countless mistakes and weaknesses.

I witnessed a very special tender mercy of the Lord this week. We have our bible basher invetigator Al...I told you about him, he is the one we are really being bold with. I was telling someone that my mission has been like a video game, in levels of difficulty in investigators and he is definitely the bowser level. He has some tough questions, but I feel the love of the Lord soo much for him, b/c i am soo guided in everything that I say to him. Nothing is held back from him, and last week he told us that his father in law died. we hadnt gone to visit him for two days and he has no money and no one to turn to to perform his funeral service and so he went back in desperation to his old pastor and his pastor kindly performed the service for his father in law. Well when we heard about this he said he felt it owed it to his old pastor to go back to his church...like he had a debt to him. Well I looked him straight in the eye and said who do you have a bigger debt towards you pastor or the savior? And he said " well...the savior" and I said then dont you owe it to him to go to his church. and he agreed and said he would go. The next morning he was at church again early and in a white shirt. A few days before that he said it was too tiring to kneel down and pray so I made him continue to read scripture verses about sacrifice and kneeling until he finally agreed to kneel. He was still unsure at the end of the lesson so we got down on our knees on his dirt/ kind of muddly floor and knelt down...hes like "no, no stand up" and I said no we're not going to stand up we are showing you that we are willing to kneel for the lord...and so he agreed. He has made soo much progress. But I havent even gotten to the miracle. He HAS to work on sunday....he says he needs to to earn money for his family. Well...ever since we met him he doesnt really catch very many fish, so I promised him I said "Brother AL, as a messenger of Jesus Christ I promise you that if you go to his church this sunday and do NOT work, you will catch more fish from monday to satuday then you ever have." I said I make you this promise from the lord as his messenger. Well after he went to church we visited him, and yes he had not worked. I started to fast that this promise would be fulfilled. So monday we were walking around near his house and we see his son with a full bag and lots of fish and S. bosio asked whose fish is that? and hes like my dads. I almost feel on my knees with gratitude and tears came to my eyes. I looked at the sky and was in awe at the power given to missionaries to make promises in the name of Jesus Christ. The Lord always fulfills his promises. Then we saw Al walking and we asked him how was his catch and he said it was a lot 11 POUNDS!!! I even saw his son giving some fish away and his wife, who has been against all of this kept smiling at us listened to our lesson and sent us home with 4 beautiful fish! :) I love this work!!! If we are worthy, obedient and in-tune with the spirit we have this authority from God to promise miracles for people.

So yes I love my mission, everyday is precious. Yesterday we planted rice, it was super muddy and fun. Its Birthday week for me and E. banzon...only problem last week we had a rice eating contest against e. irvin and the prize was the winner gets to command the two losers to do whatever he wants for a week (within mission rules of course). Well I ate 9 cups of rice, elder banzon only 8 and elder irvin got 10. Hes a lot bigger than both of us. So now hes king of birthday week, and yesterday he kept commanding us to throw mud at eachother, well it was just a mess haha. Ya I know I might have grown in maturity spiritually but mentally its well....im gonna have to work on it when I get home. Today we're celebrating thanksgiving, mashed potatoes, gravy, chicken (expensive is the turkey), corn on the cob, cake and macaroni salad....we are forbiding the filipinos from rice....they might die from 1 meal no rice...haha..then friday I share my birthday with 1 of the members in our matabao area so we're partying with all of the investigators. Its filipino style meaning I provide all the food...haha. American style we get treated....so im a poor little girl, but Ive been saving. And we keep being fed b/c im almost leaving....and people are just too nice. Oh by the way our sacrament was again 100 in attendance...yes 8th week in a row now. MIRACLE MIRACLES

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

"You can't fully believe in Jesus Christ if you don't believe in his prophet"

I’m really excited about this apartment it is really an answer prayer so thank you for helping me on that. Please read or watch this talk on BYU.tv its His Grace is Sufficient by Brad Wilcox, it has changed my perspective a lot. You will love it.

As for my week....its been amazing!!! Every week is amazing and heavenly Father has been giving me very special experiences so I have been able to see the change in my heart and life from my mission. I am soo abundantly blessed.... I have been doing a lot of looking back and a lot of looking forward. My heart is changed, I have been witnessing the grace of the savior in my life. I am a changed person. I can’t believe how much I have progressed spiritually in just 18 months. This has been my biggest blessing, I dont know if I would have arrived at this point if I had never served. I know i wouldnt have for a very long time. The Lord has been opening my eyes the past couple of weeks and I was reading my patriarchal blessing this morning and it said "The lord has blessed you with understanding that you would be aware of the responsibilities you have in life" I always wondered b/c my blessing is pretty vague. But I know now, that the Lord has blessed me with this understanding. I know my mission is not ending in 5 weeks. Its just beginning, the Lord has slowly been showing me what I need to do and I have some work ahead of me and im excited. I now know how to receive revelation and talk with my Father and Heaven. Im not afraid, I know my or his plans and Im thankful for the guidance of my Savior through prayer and study. All I can say my eyes are opened, and I know how to talk with my HF.

As for our area....its really progressing we had 8 ppl go to church, our community wasnt able b/c they had to harvest rice, were still working on their testimonies. but that community is BLOOMING, they are even sharing the gospel with their friends. As for elai...I think wedding bells will be ringing soon and you know what that means!! shes going swimming! ya!! Were having just such huge success I love it and GRABEH we are working for it. Sprinting to this finish....no time for breaks. we had 90+ at sacrament again!! 7th week in a row. the branch is getting steady, everyone is excited, its crazy. WHAT A MIRACLE!! We had our bible bashing B. Al go to church. I’ve gotten really bold with him, in my old age here in the mission. I told him NO he cannot be saved if he doesnt believe in Joseph Smith. And he asked well what if I believe in Jesus Christ and I said you cant fully believe in Jesus Christ if you dont believe in his prophet. He was taken aback but he came to church the next day. I toldl him if he came to church and didnt work on Sunday he would catch more fish on Monday to Saturday then he ever has before. I told him his salvation is depending on the things he’s doing right now, going to church, reading and praying and preparing for baptism. I’m telling a lot of people that. I love boldness, why should we be afraid to share what’s true?

Yesterday we went to the elders area in inabunga and climbed 6 mountains, we went to the house in a middle of nowhere and chopped wood planted corn and killed a chicken and ate it. I’ve really gotten to be a native. It wasn’t as bad a the pig though.

I have so many stories for you when I get home that I don’t wanna write right now but I cant wait to share them all I love you all soo much. I got your package and I gave everything away....everyone loved everything. thank you so much mom....your such a mom. You just know! I love you for that.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Staying in Calape!

IM STAYING IN CALAPE!!! S. Bosio and I will be together for 3 transfers so yes I am the Queen of Bohol. 7 1/2 months here. and I will be dying here.....I am sooo excited about that...I jumped up and down for joy. This miracle is not done yet!! and the Lord knows it!! So smile....Ill be coming home with a bohol accent. :)

This week has been intense....I cant believe the miracles I have been seeing!!!! We had for the 5th week in a row 100+ go to church. I think this was the highest number I have ever seen. And we had 4 investigators just from our little community go and they even skipped breakfast to go which is HUGE for filipinos. I was in tears I was so overjoyed with happiness. There was a new light that day in the church. I bore my testimony and was in tears, I could barely speak....b/c how much I was touched. While I was bearing testimony this over consuming love came over me for the filipino people. I could feel how much Heavenly Father loves this little filipino nation....and he notices all of their sacrifices. He hears every one of their prayers, and even though some of them might feel insignificant, they mean the world to him. I am forever touched by their sacrifices, even from our investigators. They sacrifice soo much to go to church. We have been seeing record high numbers going to church, in this little branch and its getting to be a constant success every sunday. This December we’re looking forward to some baptisms, hopefully 4...all adults. so we will be hitting the pavement hard! We are on the verge of a huge miracle, and there is no time for trunkiness.

As for fun we went up to the top of the mountains yesterday and you could see all of our area. Its was AMAZING. I love it up there. We need community service. Oh and we found out our invetigators are really weird...haha. B. Al said he would come to church if we promise not to talk to him. haha. He is one of my favorite investigators right now. Before, he was pretty hard headed. He had learned all these bible verses from his pastor and would throw out all this stuff at us. Well...Im glad I have been studying b/c we were able to answer all of his questions, and he got kinda confused cause he couldnt throw us off our game. I love investigators like that. and now he says he believes it, b/c he cant argue anymore. We’re still working with him, b/c he actually needs a testimony. but gradually this will happen. We have some amazing investigators, please pray for them. I am just soo happy with the work here. NO, I have not wasted 1 day of my mission. I love my mission, I am sprinting to the end.

oh I forgot to tell you, we ran into a former investigator the other day and we were kinda teasing him asking why he hasnt been to church and he said that, hes soo busy. and I asked him why he is so busy...what is he doing and hes like oh you know, reading...and im like reading what? and hes like oh the Book of Mormon...pshh. I was like oh thats a new one...so yes I think this is the first time in the history of the world that the thing that is stopping someone from coming to the church is b/c they are too busy reading the book of mormon...haha.

So itll be fun, everyone thought I was transferring so everyone’s been giving us food and saying goodbye and president nueva already thanked me for my hard work...and so they’ll be surprised knowing that im staying. There is a new light here. For the first time people are excited about missionary work....they have never seen these miracles happening. I love this area, these people. I hope you know, I have faith now. I have faith that the lord works miracles. I am touched that my mission is helping others. I know its a blessing to our family. we are all missionaries. I will never be the same. I never before thought of myself as weak, but I look back on the way I use to be and my priorities and my mistakes and its all changed. I love the Lord more than anything. I will be a missionary my whole life.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


So were converting a whole community right now. Well its in the really beginning prospects. We found an investigator who was left at 9yrs old by her parents and she had to take care or 4 younger kids and they just had to go find food and whatever. Can you believe that? 9yrs old and she had to take care of 4 little kids. and if her parents ever came back they would beat her. She is soo strong and she was crying when she was telling us...look at these peoples lives. I will never be the same, I dont think people can really understand life until they know and love and live with people like this. I love these people soo much. They are poor and they said that if I transfer next week theyll kill a chicken and grill it for me....they are soo amazing and I am always touched by their love and concern for me. Were like famous in this community I love them all soo much.

Oh BTW yes there are transfers next week, hopefully I dont transfer....

YEs so halloween is like it is in mexico, they just all go to the cemetery and respect the ead, it was hard to proselyte b/c noone was home. We had FHE with th strouds and I learned soo much from them as always.

I went to my last training w/ sister Bosio, I love riding the boat to Cebu, and seeing everyone and president.

Sorry, Im boring....not too much is happening but I love the work and am exhuasted. We are working SOO hard and we just got back from climbing a mountain.... love you all carry on! I have the best mission ever

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Happy Halloween!

YAY!! Thanks for the bday present...im soooo excited!!!!! I have ONE thing to look forward too....other then seeing you guys. One of my investigators looked up Courtney’s facebook, they said she’s sexy kaajo....haha. Thank you for writing s. honey I really am so grateful for her and miss her soo much, I looked for her everywhere last Thursday but only saw jimmy, I asked e.schenk how she is and he’s like she is SOO nice and I was jealous he gets to see her. I love my Bogo.

So I emailed E. Hardin’s girlfriend (about rooming with her), well see...he’s excited about it so hopefully it works out...it’ll give me an excuse to talk about my mission all the time. I know I’ll be an annoying RM who ALWAYS wants to talk about their mission. Grabeh, I’ll only want to speak visaya too.

So Satan has been attacking me pretty hard. He has been my whole mission, physically, emotionally and spiritually. But lately it’s been with nightmares. I haven’t slept well in about a month. I finally talked to the strounds about it, and they first said that I should feel complimented b/c if things are happening like that it means I’m threatening the other side. We are literally in a war, i have seen and felt satans power. There is also stuff I’ll tell you after the mish b/c i don’t want to cause a scene...but, E. Stroud dedicated our home yesterday and put angels protecting our house, I’m learning what power the priesthood has, I slept like a baby last night :) I’m soo thankful for the priesthood, and to be a soldier in the war...you know how I love opposition, I’m loving fighting this battle everyday, we have doubled the numbers going to church in Calape and are working on converting a whole barungay, but its not us...its the Lord. Every one of my areas is a miracle area, I asked the Lord to put me in the least progressing areas my whole mission, and he's blessed me with that. I've seen miracles beyond what I could have imagined and seen satans side running like scared dogs.

I get to go to Cebu again for training....yay. I love seeing president. I love my mission, actually I have been praying about coming home, and I’m somewhat excited, b/c I feel I have a lot of work to do there. Miracles aren't over. Being a servant and soldier of the war isn't over, its just beginning. The Lord is strengthening me for that. I would not be this strong without my mission. I could have never reached this level of understanding and love for the Gospel w/ out my mission. I know every good thing that will ever happen will be directly from my mission, and not a day will go by I will not think of my love for my mission. Tell grammy NO, I will NEVER run out of enthusiasm for talking about my mission, its the BEST thing and decision I have ever made. It’s who I am and a part of my heart. I feel like the grinch where your heart expands so large it breaks the xray. Thank you mom and dad...for supporting me. I am soo eternally blessed from you two and your examples. Love you carry on, put on your amour and carry your sword of truth and shield of faith everywhere you go.

(Brooke is learning to play the alto saxophone) what???? yes!!!!! I cant wait to hear her. I MISS that saxophone. I’m thinking of soo many summer plans with you guys. Don’t spend too much money on the house, cause we need to go on adventures, I’m such an adventure junkie now. Can u believe I only have 8 weeks left now? I love my mission but I crave your hugs soo much, sometimes it hurts. Being away from my family is definitely the hardest thing about the mish, and I might have a hard time going straight back to school, but I know its the best. So I wont have a car? That’s ok, I don’t need one....and what’s Courtney doing? is she ok after hearing what happened to her friend, jenny. I cried for her....i’m a little sensitive, my tender side has even gotten more evident, I cry for people I don’t even know, I’m a cry baby now. But she’s such a sweet girl and I cant believe that happened to her. I hope she is ok. I hope Courtney is ok. I’ve been thinking about them a lot and praying for her. I’m so blessed your all ok, I worry about you guys all the time, and hope I just come home to my complete healthy happy family.

Mom, I testify about your family all the time to investigators. B/c look at what your life would have been without the gospel. You know that, and I’m realizing that on my mission. What if you would have married someone else other than dad? Our family is AMAZING and soo blessed, b/c of your choices. They tell us here on our mission if you save one mother you save generations and generations. BUT, I’ve been praying about your family they aren’t lost. I hope somehow I can go there. I want to help. I want them to see what the gospel has done for me. I’ve seen Americans here, we’re teaching 2 and they had to hit rock bottom before they came back. I think your like Nephi, he found sadness in the actions of his brothers and he was probably soo alone. The strouds are probably some of the most amazing people I know and they have 10 kids and only 3 are active. I dunno, but they are always in my prayers

Friday, October 21, 2011

October 20th ~ A Visit With Elder Holland

HELLO!!! Well I almost have no time.....I had an amazing time with Elder Holland and saw EVERYONE!!! I had the best time ever, we just got home b/c we had to sleep in the mission home b/c we couldnt catch a boat back in time. oops....

By the way, I might be living with one of the elder's girlfriends at BYU, she lives south of campus, hopefully she emails me, this next week or after b/c she seems cool and like we would get along. Also, YES I want the snowboarding pass...PLEASE thats the only thing ill ask for. i think I can get a student discount...Also, sign me up for those classes and well go from there. When do we have to pay for school? Im still deciding exactly what i want to do.

Can you please, email s. honey, I think shes back in Bogo. I talked to President last night. and Bogo had really decreased....im super upset. I didnt sleep all night last night. I also found out one of my favorite families has basically gone inactive and one of my converts stopped going to church and is smoking again. I dont think i can express how much i love these people....and if only i could just go back and fix everythng. im feeling pretty... whats the word, trapped or limited....Also my first family i baptized...they think they moved away and they are somewhere in bohol and they dont know how they're doing. im really suffering, from hearing this...i know the lord will take care of them, but i found out a lot of my converts are having problems. But then as I was suffering in bed, i remembered all the successes Ive had...like Mabolo is just a baptizing area now and my convert is the ward mission leader, and I have super active converts as branch missionaries giving referrals, and one in the relief society presidency....but I feel .0000001% of what heavenly father feels, it has felt like my heart has been ripped out, b/c these people were soo strong when they were baptized, and I dont know what has happened. im really frustrated i cant go back and find out for myself instead of being told by other missionaries that have almost no information. sorry. i know im usually positive,,,but I have to be honest....i have faith but its still hard.

Calape is still doing great, our branch mission leader, left for his mission, this week...its gonna put a lot more weight on us....and im pretty sure i only have three weeks left.

it was weird seeing all my mission friends, we're like a family....i dont wanna go home. im the one going home first, theyll still all be here, you know i hate being left out. E. Holland was amazing we took a big group photo with him and all shook his hand. even with two months left I still have a long way to go to improve as a missionary. I received amazing revalation in the temple and just feel my eyes are now being opeened to the gospel...i have soo much to share with you.

so....ive been having this fear lately, ive seen a lot of inactive rms on my mission. and have wondered how? after this amazing experience they could go inactive. well E. Holland answered my prayer...he talked about the new preach my gospel program and that truly it is to convert the missionary. Well....i know i am my best new convert. My heart is changed, im beginning to understand what it means to be baptized by fire. I have no disposition to do evil but good continually. I have NO DOUBT this church is true, that joseph smith is a true prophet called by God, and made by the lord to live up to that potential. i know god looks at the inside of our hearts, and loves ALL his children. I know Jesus Christ is our savior and loves us more than we can imagine and if we continue on his pathway we become children of christ through the atonement. I love studying my scriptures, its alive and real. these prophets are real and my example. i am a convert, and the lord has answered my prayer that if i watch and pray continually, and go out every day in my armour of god, i will never fall away. Im no longer worried, cause I know i will never fall away. and you know me if i say im gonna do something. I DO IT!

love you, sorry the email was late.