Monday, May 25, 2015

Elder Christensen's Final Email: I love you all, I love the Philippines and I love the Lord

Hey Gang!  Hope everyone is doing well this week!  Our week started out fantastic!  Tuesday the Lord just granted me the greatest spirit and excitement for missionary work!  We talked to a lot of people and taught good lessons.  We answered Anthony’s questions about the Book of Mormon, then we went out to our far area and taught Harvey about choosing to serve a mission, then taught a new investigator, Lita!  Her fellowshipper, Lorry, is sort of less active, but we are hoping her fellowshipping will make her more active!  We taught our tiniest investigator, Leah, and she’s also doing great, progressing toward her baptism on the 13th of June!  We ended the night teaching the families of Jess and Allan combined about the Holy Ghost and it was just good vibes, man.  Wednesday morning during companionship study Elder Nalumen told me he wasn’t feeling good.  Now, you got to know something about my companion, this kid is a workhorse and doesn’t slow down.  He has been all congested for about a month here, but he never complained, never said anything.  Well, he just developed a bad cough and said something, so I knew something was up.  After going to district meeting and talking to Sister Clark about it, we decided to have him rest.  And man, he was out like a light.  Meanwhile, I got done a ton of stuff around the house that I had been meaning to get done.  I’m finally all organized! 
Thursday at about three in the morning he tried waking me up, then eventually threw his Preach My Gospel at me to tell me that he had a fever of 101.  Well, we got him the right medication and I gave him a blessing.  He slept all Thursday, and I, again, started getting my stuff organized.  I got to have personal study for two hours, which was a rare treat!  At around 5:30 in the afternoon Elder Nalumen said he was ready to work.  I asked if he was feeling better, and he said no, but he missed being outside.  He said he could do it, so we taught Daisy and Ronald and Wesley, the Atchico brothers.  At around 8 my comp was starting to space out, so we called it a night and he went straight to sleep.  Friday I finished the Doctrine and Covenants, so that was cool!  My companion had a rough night again, so at the order of Sister Clark we went to the hospital for an X ray and a blood test, which both came back normal.  In the afternoon, we left Elder Nalumen with Elder Lopez (who just had surgery and is recovering, can’t walk very far and who was in Tarlac Zone back in February) at the assistants/office elders’ house while I went with Elder Eggett and Elder Cancel to help run some errands, namely lifting/transporting a refrigerator and some furniture. J  Oh!  I forgot to say that Elder Eggett treated me to Mang Inasal, this awesome restaurant, as his “payment” for the zone shirt we made!  What a guy. 
Running errands with Elder Eggett
New zone t shirts designed by Elder C
Cat that gave birth in the assistants' apartment
At about 5, Elders Cancel, Lopez and Nalumen went to have Daisy’s baptismal interview while me and Elder Eggett went with Sonny to interview Arlene Canlas, who was my investigator a year ago!  It was great to see how much she had developed spiritually since I taught her.  She passed and she’ll be baptized the same time as Daisy!  Afterwards we went to try to teach Arianne, my recent convert from a year ago, who hasn’t come to church in months because she felt bullied by some of the young men and her parents apparently told the missionaries a while ago not to come back.  Well, we talked to her mom, and her mom seemed excited to see me, but she said that Arianne wasn’t there…but I’m pretty sure she was…It was late and I know Arianne’s parents like her home before dark... My heart broke a little bit.  I hope she’ll still talk to me, maybe when my parents pick me up.  But, on the bright side, we taught my old buddy Tristan who’s coming back to Church now, as he was less active when we got here.  That was fun!  And they fed us mangoes!

Saturday we did weekly planning, picked up my companion’s ridiculous amount of medication na Sister Clark told us to buy, and picked up the zone t-shirts!  Then we came back to the apartment and my companion was exhausted again.  We worked in the evening, but only taught Matthew.  Sunday was great!  We picked up Daisy for church, and Matthew and Leah came as well.  Lots of less actives came, too!  The Atchico brothers, Lorry and Harvey, Sister Agustin…. It was awesome!  AND Brother Dave brought two referrals to church: Justin (16) and Marlon (18), who are super cool and really looking for the truth.  We taught them in the afternoon and they accepted baptismal dates for July!  I also gave a talk in church about the Sabbath, which I think went ok!  One piece of bad news is that Matthew’s grandpa isn’t budging, so he can’t be baptized now.  But, it’s ok!  He turns 18 in July, so it’s pretty soon!  In the afternoon we taught a ton of lessons, and PJ, Loui and Moy worked with us!  I cooked them refried beans with rice for dinner because that’s all the food we had left in the house… They were not very fond of it, it was funny!  It tasted like home to me. J  But yeah, it felt so good to get out and work a whole day.  I’m excited for this coming week!  Lots of good stuff in store.

 Well.  This is it.  The last one… I’ll try to send another update when my parents are here next week picking me up.  But if not, this has been quite an adventure!  I love this mission more than anything else I’ve ever done.  I’m excited to go home because “Brandon Christensen” is someone else now, someone a lot better.  I will be arriving at the Salt Lake Airport on June 10th, at 4 pm, in Terminal 2 (Delta flight), if any friends or family want to greet me there, I have no complaints.  That evening, once I am released, if anyone wants to visit, I will be in my basement watching The Amazing Spiderman 2.  My homecoming address will be Sunday, June 14th at 9 am, and everyone is invited to my house afterwards to visit.

I love you all, I love the Philippines and I love the Lord.  This is Elder Christensen, signing off…

-Elder Christensen

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