Monday, September 8, 2014

7 September 2014 -- Time is flying

Mom! I love you! Did you like the "Maleficent" movie? I think ?? will be the new stake president too? I hope so. I'm scared of him but I like him, haha.
   I can't believe there is ANOTHER new film in the temple! I'm SO EXCITED! That is like my number 2 thing on the list of what I want to do when I go home! I can't wait!
   JON GOING BACK TO BYU!!! AHHH!! I WOULD LOVE THAT!! When will he know??
This picture is my favorite Boy in the world.
Niko is in blue and Jayson is in purple.

   Alright well let me tell you about my week...
     1. We had a meeting with our leaders and a new rule was made in that kids or minors are not to be baptized unless they have active parents in the church or they have gone to church for at least 6 months. This changed things up a bit and we got down and dirty with some parents pretty much telling them that we would not baptize their 11 year old daughter until THEY themselves started reading the Book of Mormon and coming to church. It was rough but necessary- lots of tears and disappointed little girls this week but we know its for their good. We want them to be ready to make convents with their Father and have that support system so they can endure. It was most depressing when we heard comments from parents like we will just wait till she is older to be baptized (so the pressure was not on them to be the example for the child) It broke out hearts but really brought to surface the commitment of these parents and what needed to change.
     2. We also learned that one of our less-actives is not coming to church because he was married before and has kids with his wife who is not the women (who is pregnant) and that we teach him with. Divorce is the closest thing to impossible in the Philippines.... so another Hurdle to jump.
     3. Almost all of our recent converts got sick this week. Sister Tunada's baby has sore eyes or called pink eye in America... it was so bad I wanted to cry and super contagious so we could not teach them. Then Sister Nildie was sick to the point where she was crying when we showed up- she was in so much pain. Then my crush-Jeromo Rafael the baby of our baptisms last week has been crying for days and throws up all the time and everything. He threw up even in our lesson till they took him to the hospital for three days. AHH! Thankfully we talked to them about how Satan would want them discouraged and would throw trials at them. So they almost expected this and it was so reassuring to listen to Brother Rafael make comments, while he is holding his little boy in the hospital say.... "test, it's just a test, we are ok, we endure". AH! I love him!
     4. More rats in the house. They are moving up into our rooms and making babies....YUCK!
     5. We found out that Niko's only guardian-grandma left for Manila and he is left here. He lives with his uncle but has no money so he was not able to go to school and we didn't know it till he told us one night that he had not eaten all day. He was so happy and excited to see us that we never would have known if we had not talked about his family. Broke my heart. I'm still not sure what to do to help him- he is only 14 years old.
The group picture is my zone at an activity trying to do a
 "food fight" but an American made the rice and it's just..... not the same.

     6. We got a new rule in the Tacloban mission that we cannot teach men of any age unless we have a companion with us that is 30 years old or older. ..... Yeah.... needless to say it's KILLING our work. We can't even teach Niko now. It's really hard to find people that age to work with you BUT we know blessings come from obedience and we are doing what we can. Trying to be patient (=
     About my blog, tell Brother Lee thank you. I honestly am so surprised people still read it at all.
Niko's baptism
 Niko was baptized. I honestly think of everyone I have ever met in my mission this kid has impacted me so much. He is becoming part of my motivation to be the BEST Return Missionary EVER when I get home. That sounds weird... but I just mean that I want to be SO FAITHFUL and so .... just someone he can turn to even if I am half way around the world. This kid has NO one, just bad influences but look at his smile! He is not the quickest kid in the world but when he does understand he just GLOWS! He wants to be a part of the gospel; he wants to be a member. He went from smoking and drinking at age 12 to this GEM of a boy who reads the Book of Mormon and wants to go on a mission. This boy has become a huge part of my life and honestly I'm scared to death to leave him. I'm trying so hard to build a foundation and a support system for him. Yesterday he was given the Holy Ghost and he just was so serious and THEN he bore his testimony in front of EVERYONE! I just cannot express how much I love this boy. He makes the words of Alma the Younger come alive for me when he is speaking to his sons. How proud I am of him and how I fast and pray that he will be strong, serve a full time mission and be sealed in the temple. I would do anything for that!

     Transfers are this week but because I am training I'm 99% sure I am staying here- which I would love! And I found out my anak or my first child or missionary that I trained, just got done training and is training again and HER anak is training... So I am a GREAT GRANDMA!! AH! YES! So proud!!
     My companion is doing great! We love each other and just are learning so much and enjoying the mission. She is still learning how to enjoy it but it's coming for sure. We are working and focusing on our EXACT obedience.
     I told you about my leg, right? The infection is fine- just a scar now but I'm going to need some sort of therapy for my leg when I get back, haha. No cold, I'm fit as a fiddle. (=
     I'm emailing Benjamin and Jess, too. Tell EVERYONE HI FOR ME!!! Hi RUTH!! Happy Birthday Brian! WOW! GO BRIAN!! Movin up in the world. Brian save the sass for when I get BACK... you will need it.
     How is dad? Asleep? Are you ok with the email I sent?... cause.... that's about all I got.
     Mom, everyone says we look alike in your wedding picture that I always have with me. It makes me happy. I love you so much mom! You are the best mom in the world! I'm running out of time so I will let you go, but tell everyone I love them and some one please, find a time machine because these last 6 weeks are FLYING!!!! I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!!!
     Tell the bishop, I want a topic and a calling or responsibility before I give a talk, haha. LOVE YOU! I LOVE YOU SO MUCH DAD!!!!
Sister Sarah Ralph

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