Monday, January 19, 2015

Santo Domingo Week 23


Buhay pa Elder Francis,
Kumusta na po kayo Francis Family, I am doing great and everything is going really well.  We had a hard week of working, spreading the light of the world to the people here in the Philippines. I love serving here in the Philippines it really is the right place for me.  I love the people and how kind and loving they are. The Philippines is really the best mission to serve in and I am loving it and "It's More Fun In The Philippines". 
This week we didn't have any of our investigators come to church :(, perro (but), we will not Give Up, we will keep loving and showing our love and care and keep trying and being happy. Emerson and Jeraldine are doing great, they both came to church once when I gave my talk, but we will keep pushing them and helping them lumapit kay jesucristo (come unto christ). We have this other sister we teach Myla Cruz, she is so magaling (talented, great), she is very matalino (intelligent), we gave her a baptismal date, she just doesn't know what to do, she said she will pray really hard to know if it is true. We are bearing our testimonies to her to help her feel the spirit and every lesson we have taught this week has been really powerful and strong. 
This week Pope Francis came to the Philippines so it was all over the news and t.v.  People would ask me "is that your grandpa (Lolo),"? and I told them NO.  But it was really funny to see him and have everyone say "your Lolo is on t.v."   There was also a typhoon that hit centro Manila, but we only had a little wind and little rain here in Laoag.  We are safe and Buhay Pa.
That's great to hear that you guys had a good week, and that the Aggies are doing pretty good, and the weather is good for you there in Logan. I like hearing from you guys about school, work, how the family is doing and life. It sounds like Emily had fun at the Jazz game with Tilley, and she is doing great in school.  Tell her that I say she is a great soccer player and that she is the cutest one out on the field. Tell Dad late Happy Birthday and that he is ANG IYONG LUMANG (you're old), hahaha jokelang but tell him happy birthday and I hope he had a great birthday and it was fun. Tell dad to travel safe to Georgia and Washington D.C. and to have fun and to work hard (masipag). I hope everything is going well for you at home and Stay smiling and happy.

I really miss you guys so much and mahal kita.  I love hearing from you and how much fun you are having.
Mahal Kita Elder Francis
P.S. I would like some of my favorite candy like peach rings, almond peanuts, chocolate, gummy bears, and jarritos, and garments (neon).

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Santo Domingo Week 22

Hello Po Francis Family,

I have had a fantastic week here in Santo Domingo.  We had a lot of success and a lot of afflictions, but we did exactly what Elder Williams said to do, to be happy and not to let discouragement bring you down, keep pushing and KAYO MO YAN (You Can Do It).  I love that phrase it's so true we can do it with the Lord's help and the Espiritu Santo (Holy Ghost). We just need to have confidence in everything we do, don't be afraid of failure because that is the way to succeed. We need to be Masikap (diligent), Masunurin (obedient), Mahal sa mga tao (love the people), and of course Masaya (happy). With these things you can be a perfect missionary, but missionary work is not easy, but it is the most important work you will ever do and the most memorable. 

This week has gone by really really fast.  I am getting a little scared because in four weeks or ten weeks,  I don't know which one,  I could be transferred to a new area. I love it here in Santo Domingo and the people and my branch, I will miss them a lot, but where ever the lord wants me to go "I WILL GO AND DO". 
Yesterday I had to give a talk in church, it was scary at first like what am I going to say for 15 minutes. I wrote down a lot of notes and sentences for my talk, then me and Elder Aagard went over it and translated it.  On Sunday we had the sister missionaries check over it too, it was good and ready to share, so I got up there a little scared but really happy and excited to share about missionary work and just to bear my testimony to them.  After everybody said wow Halo-Halo (mix-mix) I  spoke a little English, Tagalog, and a tiny bit of Ilokano too. But everybody was impressed with my Tagalog and how well I am doing, so I was really happy. 
I love my branch so much, I have been here for 14 weeks now in Santo Domingo and I am the oldest one that has served in Santo Domingo so I know everybody. I will really miss the people and the friendships I have made with them. Another really exciting thing we had three investigators show up to church like Yeaaaa!!!, we had Emerson pula and his son and Jeraldine and her daughter, and Emersons little sister Kathrine. I was so happy and excited and we had a couple of less actives come that have come to church for a really long time, I was happy to see them all there.  We have a lot of progressing, me and Elder Aagard have a lot more Brngy's now instead of four we have 18  because they took out 2 sister missionaries. So we have a lot more area, and a lot of finding to do. I love finding people, getting to know new people even if we can't share with them at least offer help or service for them or buying from the tindahan (store) that they own. I love offering help and service and helping the poor and the needy. But we are going to have a lot more success, the new standard for this year is 50 lessons a week, and 2 baptisms a week, when I saw those numbers I was like no way, but now it's not hard just find and keep working hard. 

That's great to hear you got to talk to Elder Williams.  I hope he talked good about me and you guys liked talking to him, he was a great companion and I  really miss him, he really helped me a lot through hard times, and supported me a lot to do my best and always said to me KAYO MO YAN!!!. I hope you guys like the pictures and videos.   BALUT was not that bad, it just looks gross.  I have eaten it twice since I have been here.  I eat a lot of weird food. 
I love hearing from you guys and how much fun you are having.  Keep being happy and smiling at everyone. And I hope you guys have a cold next couple of weeks or months while I enjoy the heat hahaha jokelang. I hope you guys are enjoying the stuff I sent. and loving the Philippines I sent to you.  Today for P-day I bought a small bamboo backpack and some other stuff too. So I am spending my money wisely and enjoying the Philippines, what can I say "It's More Fun In The Philippines." 

I hope you guys have a great week and stay safe.   I am Buhay Pa (still living), and loving it here. Working hard everyday and having fun with Elder Aagard we love having fun together and laughing and listing to my music and dancing to it. So have fun and stay safe and enjoy the stuff that
I sent to you. Hopefully I can send more stuff to you soon and hopefully send pictures too. Last thing, there might be some people adding you on facebook or looking for my facebook, you can add them as a friend on mine if you want to. 

Mahal kita or Ay-ayaten ka 
Elder Francis 

Sunday, January 11, 2015

More random photos...

Tokyo Airport

The kitchen

Eating balut...

Santo Domingo Week 21

Happy New Year Francis Family,
I was very safe in my house, we heard fireworks from 9:00 to 1:00 it was loud and crazy and hard to sleep, but I was excited for the new year to come around and to set new goals for this week. How was your guys New Year party? what did you do? Send some Pictures of the T-shirts I sent you and the other stuff, Walang Anuman (you're welcome), for the gifts, and late Merry Christmas present. 

My Companion is great  - I love Elder Aagard.  He is masipag, makulit, and loves to help others. He is such a good guy, he is the one with red hair in the pictures. It was cool to see that you got some pictures of me and the branch I am serving in.  I love the Santo Domingo branch. Everyone is super friendly and they love to laugh and to take lots of pictures as you can tell. I do know Joy and Chris they are both in my branch, they are very mabait (kind/nice) people and they love to take pictures of me. This week I have to give my talk in Church I am a little nervous but also excited, because I hope they can understand my Tagalog and won't laugh at me.  I will try my best and I will have fun.  I know God and the holy ghost will help me with the language. 

This week was great - we had 34 lessons, and really worked hard.  We found a lot of new people to teach.  We had a meeting yesterday with the branch president because now there are only 4 missionaries in Santo Domingo.  So me and Elder Aagard have 18 brngys to teach in now. So more finding and more lessons for us YYYYYEEEEEAAAA!!! Emerson did not come to church, none of our investigators did it was sad, and disappointing but we will not give up on them.  We will keep pushing and the Lord and the spirit will do the work and everything will work out fine. All we need to do is just Smile, say Hi and just be masaya (happy) and people will want to hear our message.  Like yesterday we taught one lesson but it was such a powerful and amazing lesson because the spirit was touching the hearts, we taught the Gallardo family there is a kid named Joshua and Christian and Angela, they are investigators and makulit and hard to teach being teenagers. But something about yesterdays lesson, something touched them and got them thinking. The spirit was there and witnessing to them that what we were teaching was true. They were very happy after the lesson, it's cool to see that Miracles are all around us, and things the Lord does to help others. 

That's great to hear you guys had a good week, and a fun New Years Eve, and Christmas.  I hope everything is going well for you, all the new stuff that you guys got for Christmas and that the dogs will treat you well, because here in the Philippines dogs are mean  and I kick them in the head when they chase us.  I Stand my Ground against them, and they are scared.  But take care of the dogs, and I hope Emily has a fun time going back to school, it will go by really fast, and soon she will be heading off to High School.  I hope everything goes well for you in School mom, and dad's work everything will go well for you too. 

I love it here in Santo Domingo, I love my Branch, and all the people how they are so mabait, full of pag-asa and they are always smiling and happy and the food is masarap, and I am getting used to the weather and the culture. The language is still really hard and I feel like I'm struggling a lot but I will keep trying my best and it will come some day, all that matters is that I can bear my testimony that what we teach is true. 

Thank you guys for all the prayers, and boxes, mail, everything (lahat), Mahal Kita. Thank the ward for everything and the Family for everything. Tell everybody salamat and I miss them, but I am Buhay Pa, and "It's more fun the in the Philippines". 

I hope to talk to you guys next week and to see pictures from you guys and how you guys are doing. 

Mahal kita Elder FRANCIS