Wednesday, April 2, 2014

"Well, at least we have all of our teeth."

Dear Family, 

How are you all? I can't even believe Mom and Rachel are in New York right now! That is sooo cool. I wonder if they have any art museums around here? We should find out. Last week was the end of school for the Philippines. They'll start again in June. It is definitely summer...I thought I knew what hot was, and then this week happened. It is soooo HOT. Yesterday in church all the ceiling fans were on high, plus most of us had a pamphlet or hand fan, too. 

So, how about some mission funnies first. The doorknob of Sister Daroy and Sister Mendez's CR (bathroom) has always been kind of broken. On Wednesdaynight, Sister Daroy got locked in and we couldn't get her out. The doorknob would not work. We couldn't even card it. haha. So, Sister Mendez called the office elders, because she wanted to let them know she was going to damage the apartment, and she busted the whole doorknob off with her hulk-like willpower and a pair of scissors. It was so funny. Sister Daroy came out so excited to be free. I think she was locked in for like 25 minutes, and it was hot. Lol. We still have been listening to all the Christmas CDs you guys sent pretty often. David Archuleta and the MoTab just never gets old. haha. Also, Sister Marchant enjoys listening to, and singing, opera music. She is silly. I love her, she keeps me laughing. No matter how difficult something is, she always reminds me,"Well, at least we have all of our teeth." That is definitely a reason to rejoice. :) haha. 

So, once upon a time, we got dumped. via text message. TWICE. This week has been interesting. Satan is working really hard on people. And sometimes that means people are blinded by half-truths. We found this really cool girl named Liza, she is 18, and she is going to school to become a tour guide. She was really receptive, and we related the gospel and our role as missionaries to her chosen profession. I was way excited about her. And then we received a text that her elder siblings didn't want her to visit with us. And we have to respect their wishes. And then...Up until last Monday, Leoandra was way excited to get baptized. But on Monday night, we taught her and she said that her husband and her in-laws all didn't want her to join the church. So we were like, okay, we can deal with that. We were praying and Sister Marchant fasted and we talked to our leaders about some ideas of how to help her resolve that concern in District meeting on Tuesday. We've started teaching Leoandra in a different brgy, at her childhood home, because she and her family are spending most of their summer their. We had started teaching a bunch of her other relatives, too. And it was going well. We even almost got another deaf investigator, Gerald. (I love sign language!) And then on Sunday morning, Leoandra texted us and said that their mother was really angry at them for listening to us and is super against them changing religions, so we can't go back to her or her other relatives. We're praying really hard to figure out what we should do....We can't just give up on her, but we have to respect that too. One of the members who has been fellowshipping her offered to visit her. Maybe it's not her time yet. I don't know right now. 

Tender Mercies still happen every day though. We had a random guy call out to us from across the street the other day, and he crossed really quick and introduced himself. He just happens to be a member who moved here from Manila a few months back for work. His name is Sherwin. He lives in the other area, but we gave him the info he needed to contact us and get to the church. Hopefully one day when he doesn't have to work he will be able to make it. Also, I think I've mentioned it already, but I have been praying to have my eyes opened more to people who might be prepared. Of course, we try to talk to everyone, but there are some times when the Spirit tells me I definitely need to talk to a specific person. This happened yesterday on the jeepney. I met a 25-year-old woman named Angel. She is looking for an apartment in Jaro because she was transferred here for work. Just while we were traveling together on the jeepney, she opened up to me  about her family and her religious background. I told her what we are doing here as missionaries. She noted that we seemed really happy with the work we were doing even though we don't get paid. She really stuck out to me. I am hoping to stay in contact with her until she can find an apartment. Then hopefully we can visit her or we can refer her. Even with disappointments, Heavenly Father always makes our work worth it. 

I read a talk, "O Remember, Remember" this week by Pres. Eyring. I really like has motivated me to write down God's kindnesses each day. We had interviews with President Aquino on Thursday. He told us to send their love and gratitude to our families. He told us that whatever we do in our missions or in life, we need to "leave a legacy that will be a destiny to others." I like that a lot. No matter what the challenges are in this area, if we do our best to build it up, especially with building member relations, one day it will yield souls who are ready and willing to accept and live the gospel of Jesus Christ. We are looking for those willing in heart and mind, like it says in 1 Chronicles 29:9. 

I love you all so much. Thank you for your prayers. CTR and ask Heavenly Father what you can do each day to better serve Him. Halong kamo! 

Love, Sister Winward

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