Tuesday, November 26, 2013



I am running out of time here really fast, this will be kind of short. We have 2 people being baptized in December! Good story. So both of these investigators have been "eternal investigators" like 3 years of investigation. Super solid and know the gospel very well.... they just don't want to get married (these are two separate families by the way) I went into lessons with them filled with the Spirit! Filled like I never have been before. I was inspired to give a lesson of the Plan of Salvation, and to elaborate on the 3 degrees of glory... and they both decided to be married. Go Spirit!! Without the Spirit bearing witness to them in their hearts, they would never have made these steps. I love teaching with the Spirit! Greatest feeling we can have as missionaries.

Oh, we went on exchanges last week, and the Zone leader I was with told me that he was absolutely amazed at my Tagalog.... he told me that it is like I have been out on my mission for more than a year. Now he is going around telling everyone he meets about how amazing the gift of tongues can be. He said he has never seen anyone with Tagalog as good as mine with the amount of time that I have been out. So I have got a huge jump on the language... (about 6-7 months ahead of where I should be). Such a testimony to me of the gift of tongues. Spiritual gifts are real. There is no way I could speak this language like I do now, without the gift of tongues. When God calls, He truly does qualify.
Elder Schroeder

P.S.  I will probably get the package either tomorrow, or the 2nd week of December. I will let you know. If you guys could send me a picture of the temple some time, everyone from the Philippines always wants to see a picture of it.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Santa Monica is Great!

I just read that article about those 10 sister missionaries, almost cried about 15 times while reading it.

Article: Surviving the typhoon: Fear, faith and miracles for 10 LDS sister missionaries trapped in the Philippines

I cannot believe what they had to go through. It is amazing how hard the church has worked to make sure all those missionaries where safe. I can't believe how hard that must have been for them. What a miracle that they were all safe. Especially being a missionary here, and knowing the culture and everything, that really would be a very, very difficult thing to do.

I hope I can answer all your questions... there was a lot in there.
So this past week, we did a service project for the survivors. It was coordinated (sort of) by Abs-Cbn here in Puerto. We packed supplies and clothes and things to send to the people down there in Tacloban. They actually filmed us serving... and being one of the only white guys there, I actually ended up on the news here, pretty cool. I cannot believe the destruction from the typhoon..

Oh, yes things are great here in Santa Monica. It's one branch but there are two areas, Santa Monica A and B. President Maico is our branch president. He is super awesome! Super cool that the Sister you met served here way back when.

We are going to be getting 15 missionaries here on the 18th of December. They were originally going to come here today, but they are going to wait for the next transfer. I was going to get 4 new sisters in my district, but now they will come on the 18th. All of the names of the missionaries in my district are: Sister Fancisquete- from Davao, Sister Jones - Utah-I think? Sister Bechichino-from Tacloban, Sister Delietubuna-from Fiji. Yep, my whole district is Sisters, except for me and Elder Aguinaldo of course...there is another district pretty close to us here though. Sister Brockbank-Utah, Sister Thompson- Idaho, Elder Osguthorpe-Utah and some more... but those are probably the ones you will be able to find. Sorry, I am out of time now.

Love you guys,
Elder Schroeder

Monday, November 11, 2013

Just keep praying that's for sure

Hello Family!

So the good news is..... that there is no news. I am still here in (Central Palawan). We are doing great here in Santa Monica. I have seen some of the footage and pictures of Tacloban and other areas... it is ridiculous the amount of damage. Basically, the only things standing are the big concrete buildings and palm trees... and the ground is just covered in rubble of houses.

We got a pretty good storm here. A lot (like A LOT) of rain. It got a little windy too. I did find out that we were only 60 miles away from the eye of the storm. We were not allowed to work the day the storm hit. Northern Palawan did get hit pretty hard. Apparently there is a lot of damage on Coron. We did watch a little bit of news on the storm. We had about an 85% chance that the storm would come down to us... but it didn't. I kind of wanted to experience one, but at the same time, didn't want to. Thankfully, all of the missionaries are safe and well in our mission. 

Oh, before I forget, President Stucki did tell us to email our families the day after the storm to let you know... which would have been Friday for you... we just got so busy working that day that we didn't have time and I forgot. But, we are doing alright now.
That is crazy about Tacloban mission. The thing is that Tacloban City is right on the coast and the hurricane passed right over it. So they got a crazy storm surge and a super powerful storm right on top of them.  There are a lot of Filipino missionaries with family out in those hard hit areas which is sad. They are all very worried for their families... because people are just near impossible to find right now. I hope those missionaries can be found safe and accounted for in Tacloban.
11/12/13  Update: All missionaries are safe!!!   LDS Newsroom Philippines

Not many precautions were taken here by the locals.... The news here heightens up every single typhoon that comes to make it "exciting"... so when a real storm comes along, it is like the boy who cried wolf.  Not many people took precautions as far as I am aware... and a lot of people suffered because of it... for example... the day before here was a regular day. I didn't see anyone making any real preparations for the storm. That's about all I know about it.  Just keep praying that's for sure.
Love you guys! 
Elder Schroeder

P.S. Oh, by the way, I did get a little wet... we had a leak (really more like a faucet) in our apartment right at the foot of my bed.... well the bunk bed... I am on top. But that's about it. Worked on Saturday in some of the tail end of the storm. We definitely got wet, that's for sure. Had to walk through some flooded spots.   

Interesting to me how he started his letter because through all of this, I have been saying to myself in regards to his safety, "no news is good news"  The church is good about keeping us informed. We did hear from President and Sister Stucki which we were so grateful for.  Please continue to pray with us for all those affected. I hope they can  replace feelings of worry, fear, and grief with faith and hope. The Filipino people are so loving, kind and a resilient group. They all need strength from our prayers. Robin

Hello Family!

This week has been great! What a great letter this week! I am loving the mission more than ever now. My love for the work seems to grow more and more every day. Transfer day is on Wednesday... I don't know yet if I am transferring. I find out tomorrow. I am pretty sure that I am staying here. But who knows, anything could happen. We found a new family to teach this week, the "S" family... and they are so awesome. We have only taught them one lesson. But they are so amazing. I am so excited to teach them again. We taught them the restoration lesson last time and focused a lot on families... The husband has basically accepted everything already. The wife is super interested. She just needs to read and ponder and pray. Then they will be baptized!!! I sure hope so anyway. It is so great to find someone that is truly prepared for the gospel.

We were able to be part of an elders quorum activity earlier this week. We hiked through the jungle to this super cool river. Then all the members went swimming... Since we are allowed to cross rivers(up to our knees) here in this mission, I helped build up their little dam that they had to make a swimming hole... So, I made a very large and very sturdy dam for them and made the swimming hole a good foot deeper. Pretty cool. Then we had lunch there at the river. They cooked some fish over the fire and made rice. One thing that kind of was a bummer is that they washed the fish in the river downstream to where everyone was swimming... and the branch president had just finished "hiking up river" to take care of some business.... and they used dirt and rocks to wash the pots and plates and things... It's way different here when it comes to hygiene... Good week. I have been doing great and feel super healthily. I am loving the mission. Have an awesome week!

The new senior couple is going to come in another week... the other couple is already here but they are in Manila. So it is probably the Newsons that will be coming here next week. Pretty cool. Pretty good week this week otherwise. We set a goal as a district on Tuesday to baptize 21 people before the end of the year. So we are working hard and acting in faith.

Love, Elder Schroeder

p.s. that is so awesome with the filipino mail guy! Keep talking to him! Maybe if you become his friend, I can come and talk to him in Tagalog. That would be fun to do. Keep up the great missionary work mama!

p.p.s. I am super jealous. Drag racing.