Dear Family & Friends!
Wow I am so sorry I have not updated you all in so long. I am still here in Mangaldan training my first "mission kid" Elder Baldove. He and I have a great companionship. We basically walk around and tell each other corny jokes. I help him with English, he helps me with Tagalog (and sometimes Hiligaynon, his native tongue). He and I are doing the best we can here and have seen this area grow tremendously since we got here. The "open area feeling" has far worn off by now and we feel very close with members and especially our branch mission leader Bro. Randy.
My testimony has grown so much. I feel so much closer to my Heavenly Father and I just love walking around and telling people about it. My Tagalog is improving, I still get a little stressed when I talk sometimes but over all I can carry a conversation intelligently and understand about 99% of what I hear. I love you all so much and I wish I could spend hours telling you about the unending supply of spiritual experiences. It seems as though I never have a normal day, my heavenly father just wont let that happen, because that would be too easy haha. We have had 2 baptisms this month and returned 3 less active members. 2 of which had been inactive for 10 YEARS! and because they came back we were able to help there daughter enter the waters of baptism and make an eternal promise with her heavenly father. Hopefully sending pictures soon but I have to buy a new card reader because mine got absolutely soaked in the storm. Overall I just want you all to know that I love my mission. I have experienced the max level of stress on my body, mind, and spirit but it has stretched me and helped me to grow. Never forget that that is the purpose of trials. I LOVE the Philippines and the people here, I know I will miss it here and there will be tears shed when it is time to leave. This truly is "The Pearl of the Orient" and a really beautiful country. I love you all, I bear my testimony to you that I know this is the work of God. I know that a living prophet called me to this place and I know that We have a Heavenly Father who love us. He hears us ask for strength. Show him you havent wasted it. I bear you my witness that Christ lives and loves us and he died and rose again so we could do the same. Have a good week!