Thursday, April 14, 2011

Fw: greetings

Heeeeeey!  :D
The LDSMail website was down yesterday for no reason.  We got into the computer shop, started up the internet, sat and waited for a few minutes, like, :D , but then nothing came up.  Then we were more like, D:<  Rawr.  But anyway, they let us email today instead, since it wasn't working yesterday.
Anyway, this week's been pretty fun, despite the random cases of colds, coughs, headaches, sore throats, and diarrhea that keep hitting us occasionally.  Somehow, we keep pushing through it.  Teaching lessons is a little bit harder when you're not all there... @.@
General Conference was pretty cool.  My favorite messages were Elder Oaks's talk about righteous desires during the second session, and one during the last session from one of the Seventies about how we need to focus more on what we want to be, and not so much on what we want to do.  All the missionaries sorta laughed to themselves every time that someone mentioned how young men of marrying age should not hesitate to get married.  That's right, Elders, don't hesitate!  Just go get married!  Bahahaha.... ^^''
Last Saturday, we went to visit a less-active family (this was at the end of the day, after General Conference, and after all our other appointments had already fallen through).  We were pretty tired and a bit frustrated, but this lesson with the less-active family pretty much made our day.  Richie Salamanca was the father of the family, and he'd actually been to church the previous Sunday with his dad, and had enjoyed it.  He grew up in the Church, but in his teenage years had fallen away from it.  He told us that recently, he'd decided he'd better start thinking about his family, and he gave up all his addictions to cigarrettes and things, and now he wanted his family to start coming back to church and returning to being active.  He wants them to be sealed in the temple.  He committed to come to church every week and to hold family prayer every day and family home evening every week, and we gave him a Tagalog Book of Mormon, since he'd been struggling to read the English one he already had.  That's what I enjoy the most about missionary work:  teaching people who are willing to accept the gospel and follow the things that will lead to eternal life.
Our efforts to focus on member referrals have started to bear fruit.  Sunday night we visited a referral, the Sarmento family, who has also been prepared to hear the gospel.  Sister Sarmento was able to attend General Conference, and she enjoyed it and had a lot of questions for us when we visited her later that night.  They all have a desire to be baptized (well, all of them that we've taught.  Tatay's been tired from work and sleeping every time we've visited so far...), and they seem willing to do what is required to follow the gospel and prepare for baptism.  Again, those are the kinds of people that I enjoy teaching the most.  The kind that actually listen.  We've had several other such referrals recently, and we've been blessed with quite a number of people to teach.
Yesterday we went to the temple and attended the 8:00 am session (before, we've always tried to catch earlier sessions, and I haven't enjoyed it as much, since I have trouble staying awake that early (being in Cavite, which is farther away, hasn't helped that much either)).  Apparently, the 8:00 session is a Tagalog session.  They're usually in English, so that was my first chance to go through it in Tagalog.  It was pretty cool.  They spoke sort of deep Tagalog, but for the most part, I understood it pretty well.  The way they said some things was kind of amusing, since I'm used to hearing it in English, and the Tagalog took me off guard.  My companion enjoyed it pretty well, too, though he had a harder time understanding all of it.  He's been through it enough times to have the whole thing pretty well memorized, though, so it was fine.
It's sorta weird being fluent in more than just English, by the way... o.o  Like.  Weird to think about.  Sometimes I do a sort of mental double take, like, Hey, I can speak Tagalog... weird...  I couldn't do that 15 months ago...
It's also weird to think that I've been doing this for over a year now.  It doesn't seem that long ago that I was shuffling off to the MTC or shipping out to my first area or whatnot.  Like.  It feels like I've been doing this for forever, but at the same time, it doesn't feel that long.  What's even weirder is that I only have 9 months left.  o.o  The sisters in my batch already have their flight plans, and will be going home in June.  It's just... weird...

Anyway.  I haven't managed to get that BYU application finished yet.  I know I need to get moving on it soon, but I haven't had a chance to get those essays done.  Most of the rest of it's all ready, I just need to hurry up and finish it.
That's about it for this week.. Love you all!  Ingat kayo lagi!
Elder David Jones
P.S.  Someone told a story about how there was a relatively new missionary here (I don't know how true this is...).  They invited all of their investigators to a big gathering where there was lots of food, and as they started eating, the new missionary wanted to encourage the investigators with phrases like, "Just keep eating!  Don't be shy!  Just think this is your house!", etc., but didn't know all the words.  So he leaned over to his companion and asked, "How do you say, 'eat'?"  "Kain."  "How do you say 'shy'?"  "Hiya.."  "How do you say, 'think'?"  "Um.. you could use, 'akala'..."  "Ah, okay!"   Then he turned to the investigators and said proudly, "Kain lang ng kain!  Wala kayong hiya!  Akala n'yo bahay n'yo lang ito!"  ("Eat and eat!  You have no shame!  You just assume this is your house!")  Naturally, they were a bit hard pressed to set return appointments... ^^''

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