Mission Time In Cebu

Thursday, June 2, 2011

5/31 - First Week in Bohol. Challenges and Miracles!

Well....I have one thing to say I have fallen in love, with BOHOL!!! It is the most spectacular place I have seen in person, and I thought Bogo was beautiful....sometimes I just lose my breath looking at the jungles and jungles of palm trees and the rolling mountains with the bright green miles of rice fields. But before I go on my Bohol adventures I have to finish up talking about my Bogo days. So Thursday I got another encounter with my stalker. You know how elder frecker went to his house to tell him off 2 weeks ago. Well I saw him on my way to say goodbye to two of my favorite recent converts and who was behind me? My cockeyed, drunk stalker. He followed me and went INSIDE the house and wouldn’t leave...he just kept mumbling his love to me and one of the brothers was going to try to punch him, but they had to hold him back. The stalker finally went outside after 20 minutes of declaring his love and was waiting for me outside aand I snuck out around back after saying my goodbyes. Then I had a wonderful FHE with my favorite family and recent converts...I love them soo much, of course I cried. and tell sister honey I miss her and Im making her a BR. I love Bogo soo much, but I feel satisfied with my work there of course I ache for my Bogo but I know they are in good hands.

Transfer day was hard I knew that was the last time I would see a lot of the missionaries who I love, so it was really hard. B/c I think I will be spending a while off island and a lot of them will be going home. yes i am tigulang (an old person) in the mission. I didn’t really get a to talk to e. johnson, I think he’s in toledo now?

So the boat ride To Bohol was sweet, tons of little islands on the side and it was just awesome!!! Bohol is sooo beautiful...rice fields!!! our apartment is okay but I think they are gonna make us move. I’m gonna be known as the moving sister....grrrr... I hate moving. We get to our apartment and it is a mess b/c there were elders there before. Plus they leave us a note that said this is a HARD area and they have had very little success. I look at the area book they usually only have 10-14 lessons a week. But I have FAITH...I am soo excited, I just love challenges and I LOVE hard areas. Never seen an easy one yet. Everything I hear about how hard it is just gets me excited. So after lots of planning and strategy we meet the president of the branch (super nice) super willing to help and we schedule PEC meeting with them on Sunday morning. I don’t think they’ve ever had one...haha. But i learned from Bogo success starts by meetings.

We spoke on Sunday and I gave the story about the sons of mosiah and about them being assigned to a super hard area -the lamanties. and having tons of success through fasting. So I decided I was gonna fast- then BOOM miracles!! That afternoon about 10 members of the branch went on splits and we visited less active members plus we scheduled to have members work with us all week, PLUS we received 11 referrals. They loved the elders but after 3 days they were like its super nice to have sisters :) I love them already soo much!!! I told them through faith, fasting and prayer we will see miracles. YES!! I am soo excited to work everyday. WORK WORK WORK...I am as happy as ever. But yes ITS HARD!!! We were left with 0 investigators...not even one!!

Tuesday I climbed a mountain to visit some referrals...it was awesome....breath taking views...you can see cebu island. Then today I went to the chocolate mounatins (they were formed b/c Bohol used to be entirely underwater, that’s why there are sea shells on the ground everywhere in the philippines..hha) AMAZING and yes I held a tarsier....so creepy and sooo funny and cute. Its illegal but we paid the guy under the table...shhh. :)

My companion is fun, good worker...we get along. Im just expecting so many miracles....I want you to know though. My mission is not easy. Its hard, hardest time of my life. I have spent soo many times crying myself to sleep over people that have rejected us, people that I have loved. I have felt physical pain from the intense emotional pains I have felt. I have never felt such horrible emotional pain in my life where my body aches and I just cry out to heavenly father to help me. A mission is hard, I have soo many trials and weaknesses. But I’ve learned not to focus on them, once I learned to completely forget about myself is when I learned to love my mission. AND I LOVE MY MISSION!! I don’t focus on the disappointments and the trials, that’s just wasting my time. I am soo happy, I have never been happier, despite everything, I am happy and soo full of love for everything. I can’t wait to come home and just teach...I love teaching- just wait for my family home evenings. :)

oh by the way got your package...it was perfect-loved it all, your the best mom ever i mean it. Loved the pictures but just wait till you and dad come to the philippines you’ll have an adventure of a lifetime.

By the way elder frecker just ordered a plate of chicken butts, he thought it was chicken nuggets...haha.

I love you all soo much, I feel your prayers. Im in a hard area and I love it. Pray for miracles, this is gonna be the sweetest experience of a life time.

I’m in paradise, working for the lord, with all the potential to happen in the world. priceless gyud.

Carry on!

5/24 - Last Week In Bogo, On To Bohol

Sooo....I am all healed, my fingers are great but the medicine has made me sick but its okay, I have had a FANTASTIC week. First of all the transfer call just came this morning.........I am reopening an area in BOHOL!!!!! yes!! I thought that I would never see that island. I am the second american sister to be in Bohol and first in the zone-Calape zone and we are the first sisters in Calape area!! I am soo excited. My companion is sister manarin and elder frecker my zl now will be transferring there with me. The area its super out in the middle of nowhere. there is nothing but a market. its going to be a crazy experience and super difficult, especially reopening. I know its just gonna be super difficult. But thats my mission, I have always started out in a non-progressing area and my favorite thing is to just watch it grow and blossom. I actually prayed and fasted for another hard area, I want to grow and I need trials to increase my faith. Im a person that has always liked to learn the hard way. and by the way Bogo is super progressing!!! I mean its incredible the progress, when I first arrived there was no meetings, no progressing investigators, no referrals...and now. we have all of our meetings, the ward members just keep loading us with referrals and they are all doing a branch caravan every sunday and visiting all the inactives or less actives. they are even visiting maricar and her family for me. I can honestly say I put my heart and soul in Bogo and my work there is done. I can leave happy, even through my heart is heavy. I am leaving members of my family again. But this week I have been trying to leave a legacy of my testimony and let these people know how much I love them. We had a super strong lesson with my favorite family and I told them what examples they have all been to me, and everyone cried...even Jerson (my 14 yr old convert) we were all balling, it was an incredible experience. I know I have left a legacy I can be proud of and thats the most satisfying feeling.

So we found a new house...its awesome, looks like a house from doctor suess...haha. the sink only does to my knees and the tiles are awesome. But ill never live there.

I know if we continue to trust in god everything will be all right. and BOGO zone has overcome all these things....even pres. hansen said that we are going through trials b/c of how well the zone is doing and its true. These missionaries and people here are my family, I dont know what Im going to do with out them, they are a part of my heart and I will be leaving a piece of my heart here in Bogo. But I know that I need to leave and experience this new area that needs me just as much as I need it. I love you all....keep strong and dont get distracted. Love ya!!

Carry on!

5/17 - "So DON'T WORRY"

I'm pretty sure she knows I'm going to worry! Ha Ha! ~Jeanette

Well...I am now known as one of the most hazardous sister in the mission. Yes, I am back in Cebu City again b/c yes, I had to go to the hospital again!!! I think I am soo much of a hazard, I will probably never get to go off Cebu island. I have three very swollen, infected fingers, so I have been put on anitbiotics. President Hansen said we are doing so well in Bogo we need to go through some trials. I am taking very good are of them b/c I DONT want to lose my fingers so DONT WORRY!!! I am doing all that I can. We don’t know why they are infected really and three at the same time. But I got a blessing and in the blessing elder Neufeld said DONT WORRY!! so DONT WORRY! We just partied down in the hospital and I got to see Elder Pasikala so tell his mom hi and I got to see Elder McBride and Sister Person. So I am happy. Sister Hansen also takes such good care of us, so DONT WORRY! haha

As for this week...Its been good, we had an amazing baptism, loved it. I just love Christian...we took him to Danao with us the next day to see the Jubilee; the area presidency got to be there. It was soo fun, but Christian got really carsick...hes not used to riding in cars and threw up the whole time...and we kept feeding him too haha. and we also went on the most amazing drive in the mountains...im taking you there if you come, there is a huge mountain that looks like a sleeping giant. Even though Christian was sick the whole time he said he had fun...haha. He just laid in my lap the whole time, and I kept buying him Pepsi. All the dances were so cute by the way...the Filipino culture is amazing!!

So we’re pretty sure our house is haunted and full of termites so we have been looking for a house to move into, but I think I’m transferring next transfer so I don’t really have a say in what happens. I’m going to cry...I HATE TRANSFERS! and I am just so in love with the people right now. We had an amazing lesson with Reya and I see how much she wants to change. I know she will be baptized. I’m going to miss soo many people here. One of my converts- Montessa asked me if she could save up her money so she could take me on a Ferris wheel ride before transfers...haha. I just love her, she has a notebook I gave her where she drew all these hearts and said sister Robison is her favorite missionary, I was soo touched. .

I told sister H that you are looking for a man for her in America, she says you have the go ahead,,, she said GO GO GO! haha. Now your giving my ward members referrals huh? ahaa....

I would LOVE it if you bought a house boat!! I cant wait to finally go in the water again....

by the way got my package from the Mcpeaks!! LOVED IT!! IT WAS PERFECT! I wrote them a letter, hopefully they get within the next couple weeks.

By the way pray for our zone Bogo is a very sad zone right now. One elder has tuberculosis, so he is in exile right now...no work for two weeks. Another just came down with us to the hospital to get surgery on his mole that might be cancerous. We took videos and pictures during the surgery...haha. and then my fingers so our zone could use a little extra prayers we have only 1 1/2 weeks left until transfers.

...obedience is key as a successful missionary. If you’re doing all you can that’s what counts. I have learned that it is not to be recognized by others that matters its only what Heavenly Father thinks. I can always improve; I want to improve myself too as a missionary. We’ve had a tough transfer being completely focused b/c of all the problems in the zone, moving houses sickness, stalkers...Satan has thrown everything at us to get us distracted and honestly it has worked a little so I learned these past couple days I need to become more focused again and get back on track and focus on what really matters...THIS WORK. THESE PEOPLE. You’ll understand more when I come home and talk to you about everything....

Just know I am still soo happy. Even though my fingers are about to fall off...haha. I have pictures pretty gruesome. But I am taking such good care of them, which I usually don’t do. You would be proud and sister yanoyan is a nurse.

Well I just want to let you know....love skype, miss you soo much!! Im working hard. We had a little hardship this week, One of my converts has completely hardened her heart, it has nothing to do with us....her little brother was supposed to be baptized this week but the whole family that came back to church has just totally fallen. So please pray for them. I don’t know what is happening. I’m really worried. They don’t come to church any more and always have excuses. That is the most difficult heartbreaking part of a mission. Seeing someone you love just fall away, especially after they were baptized. Soo please pray, the mission isn’t always success and miracles 95% is disappointments and hard work....but its worth it for the 5% success...well I love you all. I feel you prayers!!

5/10 - Bogo

Note from Cari's mom: It is my goal to never misss a week of writing Cari. She has been pretty consistent about what time she sends her emails every Tues., so I thought I still had time to write, but this week she was about 1 hour early, so when I sat down to write her, I got this sad message... Well, it turned out ok, since we were able to email back and forth for a few minutes.

So even though I don’t have an email from Mom, I am still emailing, the only reason I am not crying is b/c I can skype tomorrow at 9 am. So be there at the computer or you will have a very disappointed missionary daughter. week has been successful. We had 3 inactive families come to church that we taught this week. We had an area attack in the zone leaders area and I went on splits with two amazing nanay's that just love to share the gospel. If we had more members like them the world would be Zion. They were on fire and we found three amazing new investigators for the elders... I just loved them! I think they will be baptized even though it was only the first lesson.

On Sunday we were blasted with the spirituality of president Hansen at district conference. I was just amazed about what he said about sustaining our leaders, he is so inspired. I will definitely think differently when I raise my hand to sustain callings. After that we had a missionary fireside with the district and we taught a work shop on sharing the gospel with our friends so we could get referrals from the members. I had an object lesson where I had two pieces of cake and I explained that the blessings from the gospel are like chocolate cake and I asked who wanted chocolate cake. One of the elders was so excited he almost stood up when he raised his hand, and then I called on another member of the audience. So the member came up got his cake and was eating it and then the elder came up to get his cake and I just shoved it in his face and smeared it all over his ear. Everyone was laughing and he was shocked. I told them that the blessings are the same from the gospel and it depends on how we deliver it and share the gospel to see if they really want those blessings. Everyone loved it and one of the members told me he wants to use the idea for the presentation he is giving at work. so hopefully we get a lot of referrals now...haha.

This week was Elder Swicegoods birthday...we made him a fiesta float and ate the rest of the cakes...and he treated us to american pizza!! I forgot that i missed american food. haha. Theres a pizza shop in Bogo where all the old american joes hang out...haha.

Right now we are getting ready to go to the temple...yes!! I love it. Oh by the way, I ate sting ray and loved it!! AND this week we are going down to Danao for the jubilee celebration!! I am sooo excited!!! We are bringing our investigator Reya, we cant wait!!

By the way this is the email from president we are all on cloud 9

“I too have witnessed a miracle this week in connection with the Bogo District that takes the number one spot in the multitude of miracles I have witnessed over the years. I know that the Lord has His eye on that district and that the future is very bright for it. Your zone has truly contributed to the miracle by loving the people. This is what the people have lacked for so long.......I hope your example transposes to the members.....Thanks for your email. It is indicative of your testimony. Pres.Hansen”

Also the fact that he announced that Bogo has one of the best sets of missionaries they have ever had right now and that is coming from president Hansen. I just love our Zone, don’t let me transfer in two weeks....ahhh!!! Hopefully not!! Well I hope I can skype with you all tomorrow.