Monday, October 22, 2012

hard work is good

Monday, October 22, 2012
Molo, Iloilo City, Philippines

Many names in this blog are changed to protect privacy.

Watching some of my batch go home two weeks ago was difficult, and I was a little bummed.  I knew that I could have been going with them.  However, that didn’t last long, and I don't feel that way right now.  I am pretty darn focused.

This week I hit my two years mark.  Weird.  As of yesterday, I have one month left.

Maria and Angel are doing great.  They came to church and seemed to really enjoy it.  I was glad that they came.  We are having some good lessons with them.  Maria is working towards baptism on November 10th.  Angel wants to be baptized, but if she is, she will lose her scholarship for school.  That's a tough situation.  She told us that our church is way better because she feels something, but at her church, she just has fun.  

Last night we went to teach them.  We usually teach at Jessa’s house.  We were going to teach about tithing.  On the way there, Jessa stopped us and told us to go to Angel's house.  When we arrived, we found out that it was Angel's birthday!  We didn't get to teach, but we got to meet a lot of family and neighbors.  It was a really fun time.

I went on splits with Elder Foshee and Opoc this last week.  Elder Opoc is the new mission secretary.  He's way awesome!  He reminded me of Elder Monecer, and of course we got along great.  From 8 to 3, we did studies and I helped them with their office work.  They were swamped, and I was glad to help out because it meant they actually got to leave before 5 pm!  It was fun.  I got to call owners of the missionary apartments from all across the mission.  I got to use Aklanon, Ilonggo, Tagalog, and Kinaray-a!  I hole punched stuff, licked envelopes, counted money, filed papers and even mopped up the floor from spilled juice!  It was a blast.  I suppose that, besides calling the landladies, it was kind of lame work, but the company was great.

The work outside of the office was great.  We taught five lessons, and they were awesome.  We only took two minute turns at teaching, and it was the best unity ever!  I had a blast.  It was like a jam band that knows each other, or a basketball team that depends on each other.  It was so much fun.  In the evening, we bought a tub of rocky road ice cream and ate it all.  That's actually Mom's advice.  I had never done it before, and I’m glad we tried it.  Good recommendation, Mom!

Lanielle didn't go to church. Her father said it was too far!  That's kind of lame.  He used to be all on board for her getting baptized, but lately we've been getting a weird vibe.  We'll have to talk to him.  We used to teach the whole family, but only Lanielle kept commitments.

Last week’s district meeting was excellent.  It was the best ever.  I know I say that a lot, but I mean it.  We talked about the Holy Ghost.  I knew what I needed to talk about.  I actually didn't have a lesson plan.  I just had a paper full of good questions and scriptures, and we had a great discussion.  It was great.  Everybody told me in interviews that it was good.  I was glad to hear that.  We talked about how being too playful can drive the spirit, but being happy invited it.  We talked about where to draw the line.  We decided that if you would say or do that thing with the Savior in the room then it's okay to do.  Kind of simple logic, but it really gives a defined line.

We had quite the correlation with Bishop.  He was kind of angry.  He came down pretty hard on a ward member who has been kind of lazy with his calling.  Then he went off on Elders Andal and Christian about their talks in sacrament.  Both had told the congregation that they had just been asked and weren't prepared, and I guess it kind of embarrassed Bishop.  Also, we had written in our reports to the stake than sacrament meeting was too loud, and Bishop received a call from the stake president.  I think that ticked him off.  Bishop told us to not dwell on the negative.  I didn't get chewed out, so I took it well, but other missionaries in the ward did not.

We taught a lady who literally was telling us her life's story.  About 45 minutes into it, she took a breath, and I said "Thank you for what you have told us.  It helps us know how to help . . ."  I was trying and wrap it up, but she cut me off right there and said "I'm just getting started."  She went another 45 minutes without breathing.  I'm not joking.  That's the sad thing.  I can't wait to tell you more about all these things around the dinner table.  Some things here are so ridiculous.

Elder Andal
I wrote a song in Kinoray-a.  The first two versus wrote themselves, but then it got more difficult because I've never tried to rhyme in another language before.

Elder Andal and I are seeing more eye to eye.  We are teaching in better unity.  Most elder expect me to kill him.  I haven't, and really don’t feel like doing so.  

Life is great.  I'm working hard.  Elder Maneateata is getting good at Ilonggo.  He's come a long way.  We have two FHE's planned this week.

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