Monday, June 9, 2014

June 2, 2014


We went to the Monastario De Tarlac - it's a big monastery in mountains. There's this little mini castle thing up there too and we took some zone pictures there - there are more sisters than elders here.

 This picture (with the guy and his two kids) is really funny. There was this big group of relatives from another place up in the mountains and I guess they hadn't really seen foreigners before. They asked me in broken English if they could take a picture of me and were pretty freaked out when I answered in Tagalog. I took pictures with a couple of the men and their kids and then one of the Nanays came out with her daughter (probably about 15) and told me to get a picture with her 'Dalaga' (Dalaga means 'single girl'...and is usually used by mothers to show off their daughters). That was kind of awkward but I maintained an appropriate distance while being friendly. We were able to talk with the whole group though about the gospel and they seemed really interested, so it all worked out okay. It'll be weird coming home and not being noticed ever, haha. I think it's better that way though.
Elder Evangelista is a really cool companion though. I think I've trained him pretty good so far...the only real thing that needs training is all of the reports. I could never be an accountant or any job that handles numbers. It's way too stressful.

Dear Family,


CHIKI! (Cheeky)

WALI! (Wally)

HINDO! (As spelled)

PAK! (Puck)

TAMBO! (Tahmbo)

RIKI! (Reekee)


That's all heard for an hour this morning on the jeepney, haha. I learned a new Filipino game as we were going to our zone activity earlier. It involves a lot of shouting and slapping each others hands. I'm pretty sure some of the Elders hands were almost bleeding afterwards, haha. I'll have to teach you all someday. We went to a really cool monastery place up in the mountains today and ate mangoes with salt the whole way home while four of the Filipino Elders went crazy with that game. Then one of the Samoan elders joined in and they were all too scared of him and the game ended, haha. I love the Phils.

 It's been a good week with a few sad parts. One of our great new investigators who has been to church twice told us he doesn't want to meet with us anymore. I guess when his pastor found out he was being taught by 'Mormons' he started emailing our investigator and telling him all sorts of stuff like how there is no such thing as revelation and visions and that the Bible is the only source of truth. Does that sound familiar? I told him about Joseph Smith and how his pastor said the exact same thing to him, but Joseph kept on trusting in the Lord and seeking further revelation. We told him his questions would all be answered if he would just earnestly read and prayed about the BOM. Nope, he doesn't want to. We respected his agency and told him we would have to focus on other people who are ready to hear the Gospel. It makes me sad when people believe in their pastors more than in God. So many good people get misled by other people with good intentions. It's not something to get angry about, but it makes me kind of depressed sometimes.

 "Quench not the Spirit." I feel like most churches nowadays do that.

 On the bright side, the four investigators we have goaled for baptism this month all came to church. They are all teenagers from part member families. I am happy about their baptisms and their families are all supportive...but I really wish that some of the adults we are teaching would come to church. We have so many awesome investigator families that just won't come to church. The Mendoza family came to church though for the second time! And their daughter brought a friend named James. They come from a pretty rough neighborhood without much money, so I gave James a shirt and tie. The Mendoza's have been less active for a long time and it is such a blessing to see them come to church again. Brother Mendoza coming back was a miracle, and he's shown so much faith and courage coming to church again. I love it when priesthood holders realized their potential. It makes all other hardships and crazy pastors worth it.

I'm doing well. The Lord has really been blessing me :) It has started raining a little bit but nothing too crazy yet. Last Monday there was a pretty good storm though...the power went off in the whole city for about an hour. Tarlac floods a lot so I'm kind of hoping it won't rain a lot until August.
I love you all. I'll talk to you again next week!


- Jared.


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