So! First off, last P-Day was really cool. Email was good, but there was a brown-out that delayed us. In the evening we visited all of our investigators and we had a dinner appointment with Nanay Ponce. After dinner he gave us two referrals! We then read the Book of Mormon with him. Another good day! Tuesday morning we had a fun service project with the zone leaders in their area for their investigator. In the afternoon we taught Maria Biyag, a less active, who recognized the difference in her life when she went to the church and she said that she would come this week. We were punted, but we found Tess and Malu, two moms who let us share with them. We then taught Dahlia, Bien’s mom. She had so many questions, especially about the Book of Mormon. My companion announced that that is what we would be sharing, even though the Restoration was what we had planned. I hesitated, but then asked him if that’s what he really felt, and he said yes, so I followed his lead and it was a great lesson! And when Elder Palabrica started saying, “And when you come to feel this is true,” she suddenly interrupted and said, “I’ll get baptized!” she totally accepted a goal date for the 14th of December. My companion said that he felt like screaming. I did, too! We also had a really good lesson with Roby, where we explained the Book of Mormon. It was a surprisingly good lesson and she committed to read it! We contacted the referral of Nanay Ramos and they accepted us! Julius, Jonna and her boyfriend Jeff! Cool! Amazing day. When we got home, we did scream!
Wednesday we had district meeting, where I saw Elder Armatage again. I can’t believe we are in the same zone. So fun! th Day Adventist missionary, and we had one “I’m busy! No!” (Yes, in English, Ha ha!) The rest of Thursday was pretty good! We taught Tatay Jose, who apparently doesn’t come to church because he’s so old that he forgets what day it is. Interesting concern! We found and taught a man named Dom, who wanted to know why there are so many churches. We couldn’t teach Malu, but we found her husband and taught him instead! WE went back and had a really good lesson with Jeff and Julius. We finished the message of the Restoration and when we explained that Christ’s church had been restored, complete with apostles and prophets, Jeff asked the golden question, “Where’s that church?” Right here! They accepted to pray to know and a goal date for the 27th of December. We taught Dustin then Noli Santos who invited us to stay for dinner! What a nice guy. Really funny, too. We taught the Llamas family again and Julius actually joined in the lesson! Way cool!
|Elder C and Elder Armatage riding in a sidecar|
|Elder C with good buddies, Elder Armatage and Elder Westover|
Friday we had a good weekly planning, but afterwards it felt like we went all the wrong places at all the wrong times. Our lesson with Kristel didn’t go as smoothly as we had hoped for, then we just straight up missed some people we were hoping to teach. We were able to teach Bien, but his dad apparently is pretty controlling of his mom Dahlia, so she said she can only be taught sometimes… L, but she said not to give up on her! We won’t! She’s elect, so we will find a way. We also met an 11 year old boy that comes to church every week, but has never been taught by the missionaries. We’ll teach him! We got to teach Baby, an old contact, and that was ok. We had a REALLY good lesson with Roby! We made a special lesson plan for her all about praying to know and she really opened up to us. It was awesome! She wants to make our visits more regular and she accepted a soft baptismal invitation. She said she’s never asked God a specific question, because she feels like she would be doubting Him, but she said that she’ll try it for the first time! Heck yeah! Good things are happening!
Saturday was the day of the kindest, nicest rejections ever! In the morning we had a return appointment with a certain contact, but when we got there the Dad totally let us in, sat us down, and told us no. Dang. In the afternoon a miracle happened though! We were on our way to an investigator when I just saw a dad standing in his yard so we decided to talk to him. Apparently they are from BALER and just arrived a couple months ago. They were taught by the sisters in Baler! We taught the mom, Analyn and her 18 year old son, Ahmar! They both accepted dates for baptism on the 27th of December! It was awesome because when we approached their doorway, I just had the strongest prompting that we needed to teach them, and the result was a miracle! We then met and taught Mariel, the girlfriend of a less active member and her little brother-in-law, who were both taught back in the day. They both came to church on Sunday! We then taught the Estigag family, the couple who now does our laundry (except for our underclothes) and they are SO nice and SO cool and SO HARDCORE Born Again Christians and they rejected our message in the nicest, most Christian way possible. But they accepted a Book of Mormon and said they would read it and pray about it. But they aren’t ready to seriously investigate the gospel. But we’ll follow up about the Book of Mormon when they get the laundry and whatnot!
|Palayan elders at church|
And thus ends a remarkable week! We’ve had so much help from God this week. Truly incredible. 33 lessons, 22 of which were to investigators and a grand total of 17 new investigators! Unbelievable. We’ve been so blessed. I love it! My companion is the man and we are having fun working hard! The Church is true and the book is blue!
*** I thought I’d add a few other things he said in response to questions I asked him in my letter to him this week. First I asked him about his companion that he is training. He said, “We get along SO well! He's so fun loving, hard-working, and just happy energy! Super sweet! He's been through a lot too. His mom died because she was bit by a rabid dog, but through that tragedy he found the gospel and followed the example of his older brother to be baptized. Out of 6 kids, they're the only ones who are members. His family doesn't want to be taught and that breaks his heart. One main reason he's serving his mission is because he's counting on the blessings that will come to his family. He has THE STRONGEST TESTIMONY.” Then I asked him how he liked being a district leader again (instead of a zone leader, like he has been the last 6 months) and he said, “I love it! It's very nice to have rolled off the responsibility of a Zone leader and to be back as a District leader. The district is good! It’s me and my kabahays [housemates], then the two sisters and two elders in a neighboring branch, and they're all great missionaries.”
*** I also got a nice email from Brandon’s good friend, Elder Westover, who is now his housemate and zone leader! So fun! Here’s what he said:
Hey this is Elder Westover! I just wanted to say your son is the best!! He and I were good friends in Tarlac and now we are in the same house!
He is an awesome missionary! He really is one of the best in the mission!!
Thank you for having such a great son and for sharing him with the Philippines and with me!
He always tells me awesome stories about your family and I'm excited to meet you guys after the mission!
Give the family big hugs from the Philippines!
Mahal ko kayo!
|Elder C, Elder Palibrica and their new contact|
|Elder C with parrot at the zoo on P day|
|Elder C modeling the new mode of transportation in the Angeles Mission!|