Since both Elder Calaunan and I are new to Vargas, this week we got very familiar with the area and met many amazing people. Tuesday was my first full day to proselyte, and we set up many appointments with members to learn of the less-active and part-members. It was cool because I was able to record the appointments in my planner. We learned that there is over 1000 members in our area, but only 180 are actually active which is crazy. Many people don't want to talk to us, which is sad. But there are a lot of members that want to help us out and we have been given so much food from the members. We have had a dinner appointment almost every day and some lunch appointments even!
Tuesday was our District Meeting, and that is where I got to meet many of the people in our zone and learn of how spiritual they were. We were able to put investigators that had problems on the board and then, as a zone, figure out how we can help them. Everyone in my zone is amazing especially our zone leader Elder Phelps ( he reminds me a lot of Elder Logan Hirschi) He is nice and funny, but so spiritual when we need it, and lovingly tutors me on how I can be better. After the zone conference we back and I was able to go on exchanges with another American Elder that hasn't been out super long, but he knows quite a bit more Tagalog than me. It was an amazing experience because they had many lessons planned that I was able to help teach (And he relied on me more because we both didn't know that much Tagalog). The next day was my first Zone Conference and it was special because President Tae came and talked to us. The thing that hit me the most is that you shouldn't rely only on the spirit to tell you everywhere to go or else you will be frozen. You need to step in the water and get your feet wet before the spirit will help you out!
Friday we looked through the old Progress book and found many former investigators so we searched for them and we found the Augustine family that we taught and they are so amazing, and they want to be married in the temple and have a family. I was able to show them a photo of my family, and they saw how happy they were.
I finally think that I know the area good enough to get around quickly and effectively. We mostly have to walk because our area is a little small so there are no trikes or jitneys to give us a ride where we need to go. Sometimes when we need to go to Sta. Ignacia or really far, we will find a trike or a jitney to take us.
Saturday was amazing because we were able to attend a baptism of one of the converts that the missionaries in the house with us (Elder Blocker and Elder Pojas) had taught. It gave me a little glimpse of how grateful I would be if I was able to bring someone this happiness in their lives. And afterward he bore his testimony in Tagalog and I felt the spirit so strong even though I can't understand him super well yet. I am so grateful for this opportunity to have this joy and to bring others this joy!
My companion, Elder Calaunan is from Pangasinan, in the Philippines. He is pretty awesome and has lots of amazing tips that have helped me a lot. Before his mission, he actually played video games and made tons of money. He owns a business that is making him money while he is gone. Two other missionaries are living in the house with me Elder Pojas and Elder Blocker. Elder Blocker is from Utah and Elder Pojas is from the Besayas area of the Philippines. Elder Blocker is also getting trained he is 8 weeks in the mission field. They are all really fun and we do fun things together.
On P-days we do our laundry, clean our house, make sure all of our appointments are ready for next week, buy all of our food for the next week and any other little items we need. We also get to email, hike, play basketball, and do activities with our zone every once in a while.
- I was able to talk with one of the younger members about HTML and websites at one of our dinner appointments
- There are tons of dogs that bark at you and Elder Calaunan has a flashlight with a taser just in case :)
- I have seen some very big spiders here that make webs and the webs feel like I am grabbing a fishing line because they are so strong. There are tons of dragonflies here. Also, lots of little lizards everywhere.
- I finally figured out why it is going to be hard and why I will always be tired, but I also figured out how amazing and awesome the mission will be
- I ate some fried frog with rice that was pretty good I also ate some chicken eyeballs
- We had a family home evening with a family and it was really fun and spiritual
- There is so much mud here everyday I come back and my pants and shoes are completely drenched in mud.
- All of the people are so nice and amazing I hope that I can give back by helping their ward
Sa pamamagitan ng pagpapabinyag at tumanggap ng banal ng espiritu puede may maraming biyaya po ninyo