Thursday, July 24, 2014

Sister Franks in the Philippines - July 23, 2014 (Dream team reunited)

First off, just have to share some pictures from our adventures the past week! (I love working with Sister Cutia again! For real this time. We have so much fun all the time, and our area/ward is seriously the best!!) Shout out again and thanks to Gladys for the pictures!

1. In high spirits after a great teaching appointment (Roell and Michelle accepted a baptismal date!)

2. On the way down to their house in the middle of a rain storm--a little muddy, but we love them just THAT much! Oh, the things we do for the salvation of souls!​

3. This is their little got super torn up by the bagyo (storm), but brother Roell has worked really hard and fixed up and reinforced their roof and walls. (This is the kind of house they call "house with no nails", it is purely tied together with ropes. Pretty impressive actually)
4. Dinner at the Martinez house with Gladz after a great lesson with Ruby and the Roberts (Gladys' cousins) and a quick jam session with some of Bro. Martinez's instruments.
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Basically, I am just loving life right now! 

The storm last week was an adventure. We were told we weren't allowed to leave our house (or sleep). So basically a whole day with nothing to do. 

Things that got done:
Kabahay breakfast
Videos of the rain storm and our neighbor walking on his roof
Playing makeshift scatagories
Creating a mission version of the cup song from pitch perfect(?)
Singing hymns in Tagalog
Playing pinoy henyo
Commissioning a member to buy soda for our sick kabahay (and ice for our melting fridge)
Watching mormon messages (once the power came back)
Celebrating our last day together before transfers

Things that didn't get done:
Language study
Updating my journal
Cleaning the house

Then on Thursday, I bid farewell to Sister Rimano and welcomed my beautiful, masipag, beloved new companion, Sister Cutia!! At first, it was weird being companions again. She is more hyper than I remember, and SUCH an incredible missionary!! I was a little intimidated at first, but of course, she is so humble and patient and loving and open and we somehow settled in super quick. This past week has been one of the best of my whole mission, and I am pretty sure it is just going to keep getting better! I am so pumped for this transfer!

I still absolutely love Antipolo, and our area is doing amazingly well! I really do love being companions with Sister Cutia again. We are already so unified and have so much fun working together. She is a great leader, especially by example, and is really helping and inspiring me to reach my potential as a missionary. It is cool to see how much we have both grown and changed since the MTC and I am so grateful to have the chance to serve with her again. I really feel like we are so blessed to be together and to be serving in our area--there are so many amazing people who have truly been prepared to receive the Gospel. And the best part is that the members are even better at finding and nurturing them than we are! Our ward has truly grown so much in their willingness to be involved in missionary work. As a future member-missionary, I am so inspired by all that they do to support and help us in our work! 

Alongside the hundreds of other blessings we experience every day, we have 3 different member referrals (6 investigators, referred by 3 different member families) that feel very promising. They really are so prepared. We started teaching Roell and Michelle last month and they still need to get married before they can be baptized, but they agreed to prepare themselves to be baptized on September 20, and I think they will be able to reach it. Another are 3 siblings who are cousins of one of our best member missionary families. Ruby is 16, Obet is 11, and Robert is 10. They accepted a baptismal date for August 23, so we are going to work hard to help them reach that. The last is a part member, RJ, (the husband of a returning member who just recently moved back to the ward--she didn't like going to church in the ward they lived in before I guess) who we just met on Sunday through one of our ward missionaries. They are such a cute couple and RJ is so eager to be taught and accept the Gospel! It is clear that he has already seen the blessings of it in their family and in his wife, and he wants it so badly for their daughter (7 months old) as she grows up. Even from our first meeting, I feel like he is willing to do anything it takes to gain a testimony for himself and prepare for the covenant of baptism. I know he is going to be a great priesthood holder and leader in the church. :)

There are so many stories and miracles I could share about finding and teaching and working with members, but pretty much it all comes down to the fact that THIS IS THE LORD'S WORK, and He is truly hastening it!! I can feel it; I can see it. I am SO GLAD that I get to be a part of it!!! This is going to be an amazing transfer and I am so excited to see all the miracles that the Lord has in store as we build our faith and unity and teaching skills and truly learn to harness and apply the power of the Spirit in our work. :)
P-day is on Monday next week, so I'll save the rest for then if there is anything I forgot. Talk to you in a few days! Have a great weekend!! Love you!!

Sister Emma Franks :D

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