Second, daghan salamat for my package! Our apartment now smells like taco seasoning. Every child in the Philippines thinks that "damang" or spider rings are really cool. Thank you for your letters, and Halloween crafts, and I love you all so much. Halloween in Hawaii sounds fantastic.
For this week, I thought I'd tell you about some people, old and new. It's been a busy transfer, with details to tell you every week about our adventures, so I haven't gotten into details about our friends here. There's lots of them, but here are a few of the highlights of this week.
1: Our nanay! The owner of our house is also the Relief Society President- Erlinda Reyes. Everyone in this town knows where we live, because they all know her. When we got here, she was running for baranggay councilor, but she didn't tell us- we didn't find out until there was a big campaign sign on our shared gate. She's a sneaky lady. She loves to spoil the missionaries- but "it's not spoiling, it's loving." Nay is a retired teacher so she speaks English and she has the best phrases. We have fun imitating her calling her grandchildren when she's angry or when she's very happy with them.She told a story in sacrament meeting about a "itsy bitsy rain cloud"- also, a story that supposedly came from the Bible but I can't find it. She embodies following her own path.:) ALso, she thinks you are all very beautiful.
But we're also working with her getting her patriarchal blessing! I love the opportunities that I get in working with less actives to see those further steps in the gospel.
2: Kristin! I think I maybe told you about her- she came up to us in the Plaza and started asking about our religion, and she told us she'd been reading the Book of Mormon. Kristin loves to "chica" and talk in English so we have these really interesting lessons of her internet learned slang English, but trying really hard to talk about the Spirit. I think she was maybe just confused because she wasn't reading the Book of Mormon- but she is now. She was sick this week and couldn't come to church. We had a little mini miracle when we went by her house and she wasn't there, but we took a way we usually don't go, and she was coming back on that road. The Spirit is just so good.
3: Nina. This is a sad story- you've been warned. Sister is the half daughter of a returning member, but she lives with her mom in the next baranggay. She's a 20 year old programming student, and the gospel has truly changed her. She's really tough and kind of a fighter, but she's learned true charity. It's hard to get to teach her, and her baptism date won't be going through because she doesn't always come to church- there are problems with her mom. We were so worried about telling her about the delay, but the Spirit made it all okay. it just works. I don't know how, and it turns our better than I ever could have imagined. Just pray for her.
- LakLak might not be a story yet. We were walking home and a man on a Habal habal asked where we were going. (this is a super normal event, and I just say- this way, go away, don't talk to the beautiful American girls). But he was really sad that we weren't going in his direction. He told us to come back next week at 2:30 because he wants to be taught! So of course, we went back. We couldn't find his house for a little, but guess who comes out of his house and invites us in? LakLak! We actually had to go back later because he was the only one home, and we taught his wife only later, but they're so elect!
Miracle of the week:
-The same day as LakLak, we had a referral we wanted to contact. Brother Nathanael- who wasn't really a referral. His mom met us and said he might be interested, but maybe just in the Utah Jazz. Somehow, I lost their last name, but we were going to find him. Also, we had some people we'd set a return appointment with, but I didn't write their name either. I'm obviously a little bit inadequate. But the Lord makes it okay. I was praying for a way to find them. When we walked past, guess who's sitting there? Both Nathanael's mom, and the other sister- talking to each other!. Are they actually interested? Maybe. They want to read the Book of Mormon. Mostly, the Lord was showing me that he loves me.
He takes our little effort and makes them enough. There are people here who he's been preparing- we just have to keep trying and working, and even when we mess up and don't write down their names, or when I can't communicate in Visaya to greatness of this gospel, somehow, he makes it okay. I love these people so much. The blessing of charity is incredible. That's what motivates us here. Pray for charity, all of you. And the Lord will give freely.
Fear not, trust in him, he loves you so much and has an incredible specific plan. I learn that a little bit more each day.
So much love,