Monday, October 20, 2014

Castaway to Sira-an, Anini-y, Antique

Dear Family, 

It has been a great, wild week. Two Fridays ago, there was an earthquake here on Panay (we felt it about a 4 or 5). I forgot to mention it. Then last Friday there was a typhoon. But we're all good. San Jose just got soaked. It was a signal 2 here, according to Sister Domingo, my personal weather woman (Typhoon Yolanda/Haiyen was a 4+). I heard Luzon and Japan got it pretty bad though. 

This morning we went on an awesome adventure! We (the STLs, my comp, some members and I) went to this tiny cute little island called Sira-an down at the bottom of Antique. The beach was white and the water was aquamarine blue. It was soooo beautiful. We hired this sketchy little boat to take us out to the island. We were fairly certain it would capsize, but it's all good. This local girl was showing us around the island. I'll show you the pictures in a couple of weeks. There were little starfish and gorgeous flowers and SO much coral all over the place. If anyone wants a way sick vacation adventure...Antique is where it's at. :) 

This week we started a new project. I decided to get together all of the names of the members that supposedly live in our area. The records aren't all up to date. But we are going to try to find as many of the Less Actives as we can. Some of them haven't been contacted in a long time. We are hoping to further the Rescue and also find some sweet part-member families. I am excited to leave Sister Domingo with lots more to do and lots of opportunities on her hands. This work will not stop moving forward, especially not in San Jose A. I know the Lord is guiding us. Even if I personally don't see all the fruits of my mission, which I know I won't, I know I have planted as much as I can so far. We don't do this work alone. We truly need each other and we need unity so the work is a continuous effort. 

I am grateful for the opportunity we had this weekend to watch General Conference. Just because a bunch of people have asked about how things work here in the Philippines: General Conference is sent here from the Area Office on DVDs the week following the live broadcast, then we get to watch it the next Saturday and Sunday together in the Stake/District Center. And this Saturday we get to watch the Womens' Broadcast. Yay! General Conference is like Christmas to missionaries. Every talk is like a gift under the tree. (By the way, there are 72 days until Christmas.) I especially like the theme of loving and sustaining the Prophet and our leaders in the church and trusting the revelation they receive. The living Lord leads His living Church....and why would a living being ever stop speaking? That is the principle of continuous revelation. I am so thankful for the power of prayer and for every opportunity to teach about prayer. Just last night, we were able to teach Francis and Nerisa and the rest of their family that it is okay to be frank with our Heavenly Father. He wants that kind of open, honest communication from us. How else would the young Joseph Smith have received his answer if he hadn't asked the question that burned in his soul? Sometimes our investigators just get stuck in their prayers. So do most of us. It takes more consideration than ordering at the drive thru window. It is not meant to be rushed through. It is good to be grateful, but not to be repetitive. Or to ignore the problems and questions we all have. So talk to Him about it. He'll help you figure it all out and have peace. That is such a key to missionary work. Those who stop progressing are those who haven't tried to ask Him to know the truth. It makes a huge difference. 

I am so proud of Robelyn, too. She stayed for both of the Sunday sessions and took notes and was so excited to see the prophet. She makes me want to be a better member and to help the other members to be so excited about the gospel too. She is an amazing example to me. I am excited for her to be sustained in her calling next week!!! Moving forward! 

I love you all! Remember to read and pray every day! Have and Excellent week! 

Love, Sister Winward

Sister Cassie Winward

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