Six Lessons and Seven New Investigators!

Here's my letter to President Deyro this week just for fun: 

This week was great! We were able to find 17 new investigators and a lot of them are related in some way. Teaching in groups really is such an advantage with helping investigators be comfortable in lessons and come to church. 

I also want you to know that I really like training. I didn't expect to enjoy it this much. I figured I'd be all stressed and uncomfortable in lessons trying to make sure things are done right all while not being able to understand Tagalog yet. But no worries, Sister Alpino really catches on quickly and is so great at following the Spirit. Our companionship unity is really great too! It's been such a great experience to see how well we teach together. We're always on the same mind track even when we change the lesson we planned on teaching. 

5-23-16 (Monday)
Well last night I woke up with an upset stomach and ended up going to the bathroom but that didn’t really help.. Because apparently I needed to throw up too. I ended up doing that twice throughout the night. I really did not enjoy throwing up and having rice come out my nose. That hurt! I now understand what everyone means when they talk about the two-headed dragon. ;D Even though I didn’t feel good today I wasn’t miserable enough to not go to Mangatarem and enjoy my p-day which is really good because I really appreciated Brayden’s email.  It really made me feel his love and that he thinks about me and truly cares about me.  I sure do miss him a lot. He’s always been my best friend and helped me through some sad times in my life.

Anyway, he just wrote me about how two completely different people could both be AP’s [Assistant to the President] like him and Taylor Johansen.  Even though they do things very differently, they both were worthy enough to be AP’s.  Then Bub talked about how just because Sister Standage and I were so different but she’s now an STL [Sister Training Leader] doesn’t mean I was always wrong. Both our ways could very well be right even if they were very different.  I just really loved that email from Brayden.  He’s the best big brother ever.  

Then after P-Day and it was time to go work, I still wasn’t feeling good, but I decided we should go work because I wasn’t dying anymore, and I’m so grateful I made that decision! We ended up teaching one of my favorite RCLA’s [Recent Convert, Less Active], Cezar, about temples and family history.  Oh my word, it was so fun to remind him that if he comes back to church he has the opportunity to still be sealed to his wife that passed away, for eternity.  I truly believe that refreshed desire will help him come back to church more often and frequent.  I just love the hope that comes from this gospel, and the fact that I get to share that love and hope with people everyday! (:

5-24-16 (Tuesday)
I thoroughly enjoyed today! Oh man, work today was the best! We ended up having six lessons and found SEVEN new investigators! WOO baby! I’m so proud of our work today! Having six lessons in a day is pretty great here in Aguilar, especially with having an extra hour and a half of studies since Sister Alpino is training.  I don’t know what it’s like in other areas or even missions, but I’m absolutely thrilled we were able to have that many lessons AND find seven new investigators! And to make it all better, three of those new investigators are Cielo’s sisters and brother-in-law.  I’ve been teaching Sister Cielo since I got put in Aguilar 2A, which has been months and I’ve never gotten them to actually listen to a lesson.  I was so happy! I’m really excited to see if they’ll continue to listen so they can help Cielo come to church.  Life is so good! And to make things even more fun, Sister Alpino and I get to go to Urdaneta tomorrow for New Missionary Training! I’m so excited for Sister Alpino because I remember how much I loved getting to see all my friends from the MTC [Missionary Training Center] again. But I’m also excited to see my friends that are training too, but I’m mostly excited to ride the bus.. That’s still one of my favorite things to do. Just ride in a vehicle and look out the window (:

5-25-16 (Wednesday)
Today was quite the exhausting adventure! It was an awesome fun day being able to go to Urdaneta, but sometimes while on the bus I was worried we would pass where I would need to tell them where to stop.  Luckily we had no problems like that, but I was a bit stressed sometimes.  Although, I feel pretty cool that I know how to take a 3-hour and 4 bus ride in the Philippines and get to the right place. I’m pretty much the best. (; Anyway.. Today I realized how lucky I have been with companions.  I don’t know if all my companions have just been fun or if I really do just get along with everyone.. But from what Sister Alpino has told me, her batchmates/MTC friends are having a really hard time with their trainers. It really makes me sad to know how many of my mission friends lock themselves in the bathroom and cry.  It breaks my heart knowing they’re that uncomfortable with their trainers.

5-26-16 (Thursday)
I’ve decided the worst part of training is the fact that I have to lead weekly planning four weeks in a row.. A YAW KO! [I don't like it!] Oh man, I woke up this morning like “I can’t believe its already Thursday again! I swear we just had weekly planning yesterday!” Haha, it’s a hard life. (; Other than that today was pretty dang great! We were able to find three more new investigators which was awesome! But to make things even more great, our lessons were SOOO powerful! There’s nothing more rewarding in life than seeing your investigators accept the Spirit into their hearts.  I really do love being a missionary. Kahit antok ako [even though I'm tired] ALL the time, I always perk up and wake up in lessons and while talking to people.  There truly are special blessings you receive while being a full-time missionary. I’m so grateful for the life I’m living here in the Philippines (:

5-27-16 (Friday)
Today Sister Alpino and I went on exchanges with the STL’s in Manat.  It was my first time being on exchanges with someone other than Sister Naua.  It was weird.  I guess I just got really used to Naua. (; Anyway! My companion today was Sister Berecho.  I really like her! I did notice today though that I still always feel inadequate around other missionaries.  Not that I think they’re better than me, but I guess at the same time I do.. I don’t know. I’m just worried that we teach principles differently and they may not think the way I teach is good. I guess I’m worried I make myself look like a fool when I have to work with more experienced missionaries. I did have a lot of fun today though! Since I used to come to Manat every week when Sister Cuenca was my companion, it was fun to realize I’ve actually already taught most of the people we taught today. It’s always fun to recognize faces you didn’t plan on recognizing. (: I really had a great day, but I’m also very grateful for Sister Alpino.  I’m glad she’s my anak, because I feel 100% comfortable around her. (:

5-28-16 (Saturday)
Well today was quite the party! I got to go visit my recent convert Luzviminda..IN JAIL! WHAT THE HECK!? Haha, when Sister Alpino and I got back home in Aguilar, Sister Miller told me Luzviminda was arrested yesterday.. As crappy as the whole situation is, it’s pretty stinkin’ hilarious! ;D How many missionaries get to go visit their RC [Recent Convert] in Jail! (; I guess her husband’s family wants her land or something so they got a warrant for her arrest because “in 2012 she stole their table…” When I found out that’s why she’s in jail I honestly just laughed.  First off, how do you get arrested for that!? Second, even if it were true.. It’s 2016 now.. If it happened four years ago, they should have done something about it four years ago..  Luckily Sister Luzviminda is totally fine and is her happy silly self. (: I just found that whole situation pretty dang funny.  I never imagined myself hanging out in jail with my favorite RC cracking jokes with the Sheriff while on my mission.. But like they always say, it’s more fun in the Philippines! (; 

I also got to go to the other Sisters' baptism because we ended up having 3 investigators come with us! We went to go pick up Johnathan and he ended up getting Johnson and Casmer to come with him. Woo baby! I really hope they enjoyed it and want to come to church tomorrow.

5-29-16 (Sunday)
Today Johnathan, Johnson, and Casmer all came to church today, which is great! But, church today was insanely boring! Oh my word, all I could think about was how worried I am that the boys won’t want to come to church again.  It was such a horrible first experience for them to have at church. And to make it worse, it wasn’t even spiritual! So I don’t know how easy it will be to convince them to come again. I also got a little saddened because Sister Alpino started crying in Sacrament meeting because she’s so homesick. That makes me sad knowing she’s struggling with that. But once we finally got to go work I think she really cheered up. Hopefully that was a testimony builder for her that the secret to missionary work is work.. On the bright side though.. I’m happy! And days honestly go by sooo fast now! I think training really has been such a blessing for me! I love feeling comfortable in lessons and being comfortable with how I teach and do things. Training has really helped me feel more confident that I can be a good missionary. (: Also! Cezar ended up coming to church again! :D having the Spirit in lessons really does bring miracles!