Monday, July 6, 2015

Week 51 (July 6, 2015 Camiling, Philippines)

Dear Family and Friends,
I've decided to start writing my letters a little differently, because I've realized that a lot of you are missionaires that probably don't have access to the blog the mat Mom updates (r at least I think she updates it). A few of you have also told me that you are "no longer" receiving my froup emails... I don't really know what that means because I've never sent a group email before this one one, which adds to the doubt that my Mom may not be 100% consistent on updating my blog. So, I'll start trying to do this to make things hopefully a lot easier on her, as well as on you. Also- if you don't want an email from me every week, just let me know and I'll take your name off the list.
Anyhoo, for those of you who don't know (and I'm assuming most of you do), I' m currently serving as a Missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Region 3 of the Philippine Islands. And in the Philippines, it rains. Which brings us to what I would first like to talk about. Rainy Season
Rainy Season is upon us here in the tropics, and these last 48 hours of non-stop raining attests to the fact. Generally, it hasn't been very strong, but it's been going on forever. The river behind our house has risen about 3-4 feet, but don't worry, it still has about another 20 before it reaches us, and the river gets wider at the top, so it will fill slower. I hope. On the plus side, the rain has brought down the temperatures quite a bit, to the point that you now see people walking around in sweaters and shorts, rather than just shirtless and shorts. Yup, big changes.
Next (following no particular order of chronology), because my companion is sort of/semi American, we actually celebrated Independence Day! We splurged a little during our shopping on Monday and went all out with Angus Beef patties, Doritos, Soda Pop, and even some mediocre gourmet Ice Cream (gourmet in the Philippines is mediocre in any country that has real dairy products). It was pretty pricey, but also a ton of fun. We ended the day with our very own (probably) mission-legal fireworks! By which I mean we burnt one of my White Shirts for my one year mark. It was actually really sad. TOO FAST!!
We also had exchanges this week for two of our Investigators to be interviewed. Ivy and Kate are both really progressing investigators, and it's super exciting to see how everything works out. They both passed their interviews, and are now in preparation to be baptized this coming Saturday, on the 11th. However, some stuff may have come up, so I guess we'll see what happens. Things should work out though, and we're hoping that their baptism will help out another one of our investigators, Joseph, in his preparation. He's been receiving the lessons and going to church for about 2 months now, but there's just a few more little kinks that we need to help him smooth out. Hopefully he'll be able to attend the baptism and be touched by the Spirit. He has so much potential, but is just afraid to commit to anything.
So ya, being a missionary is incredible. It can definitely be discouraging and stressful at times, but then I imagine what it'll be like after it's all over and it just makes me feel sick. I'm hoping to make the most of this last year, so wish me luck!

Love you all!
Elder Syphus

Picture overload: it's been a while

Scenery is nice

So are homemade oreo desserts... Super nice.

Caught in a rain storm. Super soaked.

Anyone hungry?

Silly companion, hot oil is NOT for plastic sieves. But I still love him.

Blurry picture = better picture. Plus, flaming sihrt.

More scenery...

Raymond, Romeo, and R-jour. Romeo looks like Ethan Bennett


I cooked :D

4th of July Celebrations. Yes, my companion bought cheese flavored ice cream. Told you, he's only sort of American

Aftermath of the rain storm

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