Sorry Everyone:/ I'm way behind on Connor's blog updates. I'll try to do better on setting the time aside to post his emails.
How does dad like his new truck? I wish I could drive it... make sure it works all right and such. The river trip sounds like it was fun. What do you think about kyle and cathy? How is that going you think? I could really go for a gourmet burger right about now. We actually have a burger place just up the street from us that is pretty dang good. I think they put somthing like cheeze wiz on it... not sure.
The work in the area is going pretty well here. The baptism we had for this week is not going through becuase they were not able to go to church this last Sunday. But they are going to be baptized for sure. They passed their interviews already with the Zone leaders, they need to be interviewed by president We have some other baptisms that could be coming up in a few weeks but we still need to work out things.
As far as spiritual stuff goes, this week was pretty good, I have been learning a lot about what its going to take to be a parent. About correcting behavior of others. Lets just say there is a lot of room for improvement...
I just want to share a little bit about missionary work, which can also be applied to life in general and our progression and children of God.
This work is not easy, we get lazy, we get tired, we get frustrated, and we fall victim to temptation like everyone else. But if we have a true understanding of our unlimited potential to repent and become like God, we can overcome. The power behind this work is always greater than the obstacle before it. Even if we are weak, and it seems like whole nations stand against us. The Lord has said, "Wherefore I call upon the weak things of the world, those who are unlearned and despised, to thrash the nations by the power of my spirit" (D&C 35:13). We are weak. Not one of us can deny it. Despite this weakness, we must all come to a solemn conviction, "that there shall be no other name given nor any other way nor means whereby salvation can come unto the children of men, only in and through the name of Christ, the Lord Omnipotent" (Mosiah 3:17). Coming to this conviction requires diligence in study, and and honest desire to know the mysteries of God. As the gospel of Matthew teaches, "watch and pray that ye enter not into temptation" (matt 16:41), we too must watch and pray with all diligence to obtain this conviction and overcome the temptations that so often lead to our downfall. Jesus Christ is the way, and I know it now more than ever. We can all obtain this knowledge, and receive power from on high "as the dews from heaven" (D&C 121:45) as we strive to work in this holy calling.
I love you all and miss you all a ton!
Have a great week!
1. yes that is a kitten in my bag
2. A lizard I caught
The kitten was from the Temporaza's house. They got some new kittens and so I put one in my bag. It slept in there through the whole lesson.
About the correcting as a parent, I guess I have gained a better understanding for what parents feel in that sort of situation. Parents don't want to do it, though they know that it has to be done... and if it is not done, then that bad behavior is going to repeat itself. As far as actually knowing how to correct, that's still a tough one... relying on the spirit is all I've got. and that the way you correct is different for each person and also dependent on the circumstances. But it is otherwise still a mystery to me. It is an endless pursuit, no doubt.
Wow everyone is losing weight! Way to go everybody. Dad should take up road biking... it is easier on the knees. well, he knows that. Make sure you all keep up the good work! I have actually lost 23 pounds too! I am looking great! nothing but skin and bones now! Haha.. Jk
Transfers are this wednesday, and I should be getting word within the next hour or so about transfers... but I am almost positive that I am staying here. Elder Dodini might get transferred but I am also pretty sure that he is staying.
How is the young men's doing in the ward?
Really cool to see that Kelsey is married.. Bummed that I couldn't go to the wedding but I am glad that Kyle represented well. How are him and Cathy doing? Are you seeing her around alot now that Kyle is home?
Well, as far as the area going, the Temporaza family is still on their way to baptism. They are going to be interviewed by president before they get baptized which will be a great experience for both of them. They are awesome! They feed us almost every time we go to their house which is super nice. Another family that is going to be nearing baptism here pretty soon is the Pana family. They are a part member family. But we are reactivating them (its actually two families) and going to baptize all the ones who havent been yet. So that is going to be a total of 6 baptisms here in the next transfer we are hoping.
And for spiritual stuff, I have some insights from second nephi 26, verse 24. "He doeth not anything save it be for the benefit of the world... wherefore he commandeth none that they shall not partake of his salvation." It is so simple and needs almost no explanation. There is not a single thing that our Savior does that is not for our benefit. And there is not one being ever in all of existence that the Savior has not invited to receive salvation. Even Satan and all of his followers, in the depths of evil and despair, have been invited to partake of his Atonement. The mercy of the divine Plan of Happiness is unequivocal, and it reaches to all who are willing to accept it. On the other side of this plan, we face judgement. A perfect judgement and perfect righteous anger. As it says in 2nd Nephi chapter 20:21, " For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still." Mercy meets the demands of justice only because of the atonement of our Savior. And we can overcome all the demands of justice if we humble ourselves and come unto him.
I love you all! Thank you for all your emails and your prayers!
Hello There Family!
Sorry, I dont have much time this week. I will try to type fast.
Stories from this week...So on Thursday we got a text from our investigators saying that there was a drug gang that took someone hostage and killed a guy in our area. We had appointments later that day in the exact same building complexes that it happened. I guess things got cleaned up fast because we didn't see anything.
Also, another one of our investigators, while we were in their house, found out that a person they know was shot. We had just walked by there right before that appointment...Heard about a couple more hold ups but nothing super out of the ordinary.
We are staying safe here so no worries. I've never felt threatened here yet. It's only the people that are involved with dealing drugs that get killed here. So being stabbed is probably the worst thing that could happen to us. We'll be good though!! I'm pretty good with first aid and so is Elder Dodini.
Really don't worry though. People here know we are missionaries and we always have lots of people around us. So we won't be held up anytime. No worries
our area is pretty crazy though.
As far as investigators go, we are getting Temporaza ready for baptism. They will be interviewed by presisdent this week most likely and are really going to be great members. They have challenges that have come their way now but everything will be okay as long as they stay firm in the faith. The scriptures are a huge help to us no matter what situation we face.
Another investigator, "K", is going to be baptized a week from Saturday. So the 15th I believe. Her sister is a member. She has been ready for the past few months. The last sets of missionaries here just didnt know who to work out her baptism. We had to get an exception to a rule for her with the boundaries. But it is all good now and she will be baptized very soon.
Other than that we had 11 less active members at church today. I am getting back into the flow of things really well here and my Tagalog humor is back. It helps a lot with getting less active members back to church actually. We are going to have a lot of success with returning God's children back to him.
I love you all! Thanks for all your emails!
That is really cool about the elephants! I bet walker had a really fun time there.
I am super bummed I am missing all of these weddings and stuff. All the stuff going on makes me wish I was at home. It is a huge sacrifice to serve the Lord, but the work must go on! It is a challenge to deal with but I am being given strength every single day.
Elder Dodini and I have three baptisms coming up this week and we are really looking forward to them. We actually had to go to the Buendia Chapel in Makati yesterday with our investigators to have them interviewed by President. It was a great experience for them. "B"was really nervous to do the interview in english so she asked if I could go in with her. So I translated during the interview which was a really cool experience. "B"and "R" are both looking forward to their baptism this week. Then we are going to start working on their temple preparation and get them some callings. "R"is also going to be able to baptize his son when he turns eight in October. It is really great to bring a whole family into the church. It makes me really happy that I am back here serving as a missionary.
The other baptism we have is a sister named "K". She has been taught by the missionaries for a very long time, but the previous missionaries did not know how to coordinate the baptism because she technically lives outside of our ward boundaries. So we got that all figured out and she passed her interview yesterday as well. So we are really excited for both of these baptisms.
Something I feel impressed to share this week is the importance of family history work, and the spirit that we will all feel as we participate in this week. I have been sharing my Family Booklet and about family history with investigators, less active, and active members. As I have shared this, I have felt a special spirit that is more tangible than I have ever felt before. Every single time I share about my ancestors, I feel this spirit in a greater presence than I have ever felt before. The work of Salvation will only ever be fulfilled through temple work. There is no other way through which it can be accomplished. We need to put forth an honest concerted effort to find more and more of our relatives, and we will be blessed with the spirit in greater abundance.
Love you all!
Zone Conference 8/11/15
Baptism!! Great week!!
I baptized the two sisters:)
Elder Dodini baptized the brother.
Not a lot of time to write because it takes so long to upload pictures.
Oh and by the way, about that picture of the river crossing I sent. The river is black from trash and poop and pollution. It smells like fecal matter mixed with engine oil and burnt hair. Just shortly after we crossed, two school age teenagers fell in because they were messing around.
I have a picture of them getting out of the water but didn't have time to upload it.
I love you all!!!