Sunday, December 13, 2015

Week 74 (Dec. 13, 2015 Talavera, Philippines)

Dear Everybody!!
My name’s Elder Syphus, and I’m a missionary. Cool, huh? Being a missionary, we got to do some pretty cool stuff this week (we as in my Companion and I… I got one of those ‘cuz I’m a missionary). Starting with our Day of Preparation (a Day to prepare for the rest of the week), here’s how it went:
On Monday we got to go the Mall! It’s the NE Pacific Mall in Cabanatuan, and we actually went there for the sole purpose of getting Elder Chand’s (my companion’s) camera fixed. We didn’t do much but wait for the technician AND buy a month’s worth of food. This is worth mentioning, because as missionaries, we typically only get a week’s worth of food every week, but to rid ourselves of the weekly shopping hassle, we did the whole month’s shopping in a single day. This is what that looks like (on a Missionary Budget J )

Looks good, huh? ;) We actually typically eat better than just tuna, noodles, and oatmeal, but we wanted to see how much we could save by trying things a little different this month. So far so awesome :D

On 2s-D (Tuesday in a Utahn accent), we actually did some stuff worth mentioning to missionaries! We have an investigator Rosalina Turalba, who is very readily accepting the things we share with her (namely the Gospel of Jesus Christ- our main message as Missionaries!), and is progressing quickly to the point in her discipleship where she can make covenants (binding promises) with our Father in Heaven, specifically Baptism. Our concern, however, is being able to teach her as often as we would like with the fellowship she so rightly deserves. Our Elder’s Quorum President, Brother Malicdem (Local leader of all men ages 18 and up), though, was kind enough to clock out of work for a bit and teach a short lesson with us, before heading back. He’s probably one of my favorite members in the Ward (local congregation). He’s always super willing to take a short break and help us out in fellowshipping those we teach.

We were able to teach a few other of our progressing investigators on Wednesday. Sunil Shahani is strictly Indian by Ethnicity, but was born in raised in the Philippines. He’s insanely fluent in English and Tagalog, and is really smart, but also very religious and open. We’ve been teaching him for a while, and he keeps his commitments, but is currently struggling with testimony (a personal conviction of the truthfulness of our teachings). He’s very kind and brings us containers of traditional Indian food on a weekly basis, but has a hard time fitting in with the members. Not too social, but shows a lot of promise if we can just work out his concerns.

We were also able to teach Paul, a newer investigator of ours who also shows a lot of potential in progression and conversion, but is sometimes busy at work, planting onions. We found him during a contacting run one night, and he as very excited to listen. He is vigorous with his reading of the Book of Mormon, and truly believes in the Restoration of the Gospel through Joseph Smith, but has yet to attend church and struggles with daily prayer. He’s very welcoming and very spiritual, and it’s a huge blessing to be able to teach him. Ya, he’s pretty much just the best :P

On Wednesday, we also had a meeting with the Zone Leaders who had just gotten back from their Mission Leader’s Conference in Tarlac. They shared with us a bit about what was discussed in terms of strengthening the work and preparing for the Holidays. It was a really cool interactive meeting, and we left with a new drive and a few gifts and letters from home (thanks!!! :D :D )

Thursday, we got to meet the Gadores Family. The parents were baptized about 16 years ago, but have since fallen away from the church. They’re very welcoming, however, and we are currently in the process of teaching 2 of their children who have yet to be baptized, Alfie and Aiko.

On Friday we had exchanges with some Elders in our District. I got to go work in their area and interviewed a few of their investigators preparing for baptism. One of these was Rina Cara, a young Mother who heard about the Church from a friend. She’s INCREDIBLE. The Spirit was so strong while talking with her and her Testimony is Amazing. She has seen so many miracles in her life since she began receiving the lessons, and grown so much closer to God. She’s super excited and prepared, and just talking to her for those 45 minutes was probably one of the most spiritual experiences my whole mission. She’s “super great” J

We spent all day Saturday in Sibul and Caputican working with Newly Baptized members of the church. One of them says she has been hearing voices and seeing things, so we gave her a blessing, and things have seemed to calm down a bit since then, which we’re extremely grateful for.

Sunday was Sunday, an awesome day of Spiritual growth and enlightenment J After Church was over, we headed out on a contacting run and met this old couple who had a Pamphlet that we give to people hanging on their wall. We starting talking to them, and got permission to take a look at the pamphlet. It was given to them in 1992… Whoa. It was covered with but still intact, and they recognized us as those who gave it to them originally. They were really excited to listen to us again, but their age keeps them from doing too much besides sleeping and eating. We shared a short message with them though, and promised to visit on occasion. It was really cool J

So, sorry this letter sort of changed styles halfway through :P I don’t know what I was going for at first, but realized I wouldn’t be able to keep it going, so I cut it out. Interesting twist though, right? But ya! That’s my week! Let’s do it again sometime :P

Love Elder Syphus

Birthday Celebrations :)

Christmas = $4

Hi Mom!

Ya, I got the packages. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE OVALTINE!!!!! I mixed it with some hot powdered milk, and it tastes exactly like Stephens as far as I can remember. SUPER delicious :)
The Choir Tour sounds awesome! Can you send me some pics of all the Madrigals in their outfits? I've yet to see it, except for the pictures Kylie sent me.
Give my love to Zami and Kack! That's so awesome for them!! Has it already been 9 months since Kami got pregnant? It seems so fast!! That's crazy!!

That's sad to hear about Bro Fairy and Bishop Bennett. It does seem like it seems to be making its way around :( Kind of scary, but it's good that they're generally able to fight it efficiently enough. Send them my love as well.

Skype will be like always. Christmas evening for you, morning on the day after for me :) I'll let you know the specifics next week. Love you!!!!

Love Elder Syphus​

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