Monday, September 28, 2015

Week #48 - 11 MONTH MARK!


Hey Mom,

PRIORITY NOTICE: Guitar strings (d'adarrio phosphorous bronze lights) and picks (dunlop yellows) and lastly deodorant (old spice)

Haha okay

This week was full of ups and downs as usual.

To start with an "up" I sang in front of like 400+ people and we contacted 223 of them. We have new investigators out the wazoo. Many of them were not from Sta. Maria so we have a lot of referrals to give to other companionship's here in Rosales. I played some EFY, Hymns, and two Tagalog songs. Preforming for the Lords purpose is really special because he "consecrates thy performance" (2 nephi 32:9). It was satisfying and powerful to all present and I felt the spirit manifest itself to the listeners the same way it does when we testify truth in a lesson. As I sang I watched my companion and all the other missionaries there talk to people and hand out pamphlets. I saw people filming and I saw people reading the pamphlets and talking about what they read all around me. We even had 3 non members ask if they could help and we gave them pamphlets and they passed them out to their friends and teachers. President Deyro is a genius and knew well that this would work. We even have been informed by members that there is a big presence on social media, including a post on facebook that got 100's of likes. (I will get the name of the member so you can watch the video haha).

Anyway, our investigators are doing really well and we had 7 come to church as opposed to the 3 that came last week. I feel like I did when we were having so much success in Mangaldan. Floro and Florante and Michael and Roxanne and Mighty (yep thats her real name) and Jarom all want to be baptized and are actively reading and coming to church. They have member friends and the fellowshipping is going well.

Elder Sta. Maria and I came to this area which was really struggling. It still has challenges and we have stuff to work out to make it more effective in the work of salvation. But we have high hopes that we will be able to work those out.

I have to go now, because I am out of time, but I want you to know that I love you and am really happy.

Everyday do something to strengthen your testimony

Elder Dahle

Here is an awesome Link of a video of Alex singing at a Ste. Maria Ward Event. Yeah - made his mama cry!!!

Monday, September 21, 2015

Week #47 - Sore Fingers & a Happy Heart

Mom and Dad and Joey and Colby and Steve and Ethan and Paige and Josh and Sam and Randy Delo Santos and Jake Skinner and Grandma and Grandpa Dahle and last but not least Grandad,

Wow what a list haha, I had to just email you all at once because I am unbelievably busy and dont have the time to write personal for everyone this week.
Ha this week has trumped the entire previous 11 months of my mission in eventfulness. This turned out to be far more than just a small performance at the municipality. The mission has spent over 26,000 pesos (yep thas about 650$) on this project. I did not anticipate exactly what president Deyro had in mind.

Apparently this may become my capacity as a missionary for a while.

This week was one of the most painful weeks of my mission. No dont freak out. It is only because I have spent the past 7 days getting the callouses back on my fingers that I lost over the past 11 months. It hurts SO BAD on day one haha.

I am still teaching and working to get my investigators into the waters of baptism. But finding them is now a whole new ball game. The mission bought a guitar and an amp and two mics and mics stands and a small 4 channel mixer for me and the other missionary singing with me. President is trying to get the attention of news sources, radio and TV to try to make this a big deal ( "this" being- the white kid on the corner of the street singing in tagalog is pretty much what he said)

We had a small little test run to see if it is effective and we got 50 OYMs in 1 hour. The goal is 20 in a whole day. So clearly it is bringing in a crowd. We play EFY, some childrens hymns in tagalog, and some other approved songs that I have been given by the AP's and I have been encouraged to write some. Tomorrow we have a really big opportunity to play outside the school when school gets out and we expect hundreds of people there.

In other news we have 3 new really solid investigators (Floro, Florante, and Michael) and they are on date for baptism. All three of these people (all three found through the music) are the most elect people I have met on my mission. Its almost as if the music sorts the wheat from the tares for us. Those with the light of Christ come and listen. The others dont.

Anyway I am way happy right now. A little stressed because it adds a new dimension to missionary work and the schedule I didnt have to worry about before (practicing, taking care of my voice, scheduling shows and other appointments) But I know it is going to work out well and am getting adjusted to it well enough.

I love you all so much, please continue to be all your heavenly father expects of you. You are all entitled to his help.

Elder Dahle

Monday, September 14, 2015

Week #46 - I GET TO USE MUSIC!!!!

Elder Dahle & Elder Sta. Maria in the Bukid

Hey Family and Friends

Haha sounds like everyone is really quite busy. By the way, what is the Marching Band show this year?? Im sure Parks and Marsh chose well; tell them I said hello please:). I am happy to hear that you enjoyed my last letter, I hope this one puts a smile on your faces:)

To start I have some news that is going to make you so excited (cuz its got me way stoked).

Here is Presidents Letter to me this week:

President Deyro:

You have a talent in MUSIC. USE it!
Make opportunities to sing. like go to the Municipal Hall and talk to the Mayor. introduce yourself. Ask them if you can give a musical number on one of their FLAG CEREMONY every Monday.

Or other things. Ask a barangay Chairman if you can have a musical fireside in their Barangay Hall. If you need a guitar i can lend you mine.

YEP I KNOW RIGHT! Ha I am so excited to get to put music to use in finding new investigators. Especially considering we are really struggling to have people to teach right now. I will be doing versions of hymns and EFY songs at the next town hall meeting. President Deyro is really doing all he can to help the church gain new members here in Pangasisnan to bring the Temple here. I am proud and excited to be a part of that.

In other news, our investigator who went to Malaysia illegally actually didnt make it...

... she got to Maynila. Got scared and realized that our warning to her was true. And now she is back!! So now we still have her as an investigator and will be giving her a baptismal date soon, along with here brother. We have found some new investigators this week but also have dropped others just as fast. Our focus right now is OYM's or Open Your Mouth. We are talking to absolutely EVERYONE. I wish the members would give more referrals though. The statistic of success is not even comparable.

1 out of 100 OYMs is a baptism

3 out of 10 referrals gets baptized

Though we dont seem to be doing a lot of baptizing here the work is still really fulfilling and satisfying. Elder Sta. Maria and i wake up every morning with determination to fight of the discouragement and turn "all time and talents" on the work and glory of God. Which is "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man"

Often the small and simple things we do go unnoticed in our eyes and we dont see the effect. Example:

Yesterday we were walking and saw a family of 4 (a mom, dad, and two little boys) sleeping in a waiting shed with nothing but their backpacks as their pillows. I pulled out two pamphlets (The Restoration and Plan of Salvation) and I left them near the head of the father whose arm was gently placed over the two sleeping boys between him and is wife. And I wrote a note that said "Dalhin nyo 'to' -or "bring this with you"

Often times we dont get to take those people to the waters of Baptism. But we rin into them while traveling the road of their life and give them the Gospel and simply tell them "Dahlin nyo 'to"

It has lasting and powerful effect in the long run and it will change their lives forever. Watch this video that the church put out and you will see how the little things add up to wonderful and beautiful end

Anyway, I love you all so much and I know God loves you too

I know that this is Christs Church on the earth. I know that our Father in Heaven is looking out for us every second. I know that he has given us the Plan of Salvation that will help us find peace in this life, regardless of the onslaught of trials and tribulation. I find great peace in the knowledge that I am sealed to my family eternally (yep your stuck with me). Some people don't really understand this. Often the people we teach assume that was going to happen regardless of choices, or how or what we believe in. But I know, and bear my witness to all who read this letter that "...when we obtain ANY blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated." (D&C 130:20). I know that a life of clean, and purposeful living. Taking everyday that God has given you and making it something beautiful by serving others while being obedient yourself to his commandments will ensure an eternity of happiness and blessings.

I love you all so much


Monday, September 7, 2015

Week #45 - My Interview with a Seventy

Hey all,

This week there have been moments of heartbreak. But there have also been moments of inexplicable joy and happiness. One of those happy moments happened this last week when I was chosen to be interviewed by President Ian Ardern, the President of the Philippines Area 70. We talked about a lot of different things in my interview (all topics of which were dicerned by the Spirit and brought up by him) But the one thing I want to share with you is a message he told me that I should tell you. He said in his thick New Zealand accent

"Elder Dahle, you are a bright, wonderful missionary and a jolly good fellow (yeah go ahead and read it with the accent), and I want your parents to know that I think so. And I think you are exactly the missionary that they think you are, which is perfect."

Hahaha we laughed and talked for a good 10 minutes about my mission and the trials I have had and the things I have overcome. And something he did at the beginning of the interview really stood out to me. He asked me how long I had been on my mission and when I answered he look at me and took the piece of paper in his hands that had the names of those 4 missionaries he was going to interview including my name and he torn a thin strip down the side. He then found a spot a little less than halfway and tore the paper into two pieces. He placed them on the desk and told me that they represented how far I have come and how much I have left to go. He told me on the smaller one he wanted me to write 4 things I had conquered and on the other 6 things I have yet to conquer. "...And Elder Dahle I am not talking about to-do-list goals like 'read the book of Mormon 3 times' or anything like that. but more like PMG chapter 6..."

So I did. And it really put perspective on how much of me has really changed. I am still the core of who I was when I left. But with so much more direction than I did before. I am not where I want to be yet. But I am facing the right way.

Anyway, this week was good but also hard (as all of the previous weeks have been ' good but hard'). This area is honestly way tough. Significantly harder than San Manuel ever was for me. At least there we achieved our goals. Here it is nearly impossible. The mission vision of excellence has now increased significantly and a lot more is expected of us. But I know that with the praying and fasting that Elder Sta. Maria and I have been doing it is possible. There is slow but steady progress every single week. Our main focus right now is finding because we dropped a really significant amount of investigators last week (which is a really really awful feeling if I might add). And three of our IBD's dropped themselves :(. One of which by suddenly making the decision to ditch her family and illegally sneak into Malaysia to make more money. With no passport.... The survival statistic of such decision are staggering. Some serious tears were shed at the lack of prayer and scripture study and serious thought put into making that decision. She left yesterday so we don't know if she made it or not.

So because of the shortage of investigators we are now really focused on finding. And to quote Elder Dahle's last email (Derek) "so here in the Philippines it is really hard to find at night time, like if you disturb people during a meal you pretty much insult them right away" So really hours from 630-900 are dead and if we dont have an appointment at that time we are toast.

Anyway, I am loving my mission despite the roller coaster ride it has become. We are really putting all our studies and energy into having the spirit so then we can find the right people, and effectively teach them with power and authority of our calling. Elder Sta. Maria is easily my favorite companion and I am so happy to be here striving with him in this are even though it is hard.

I want you all to know that I know this church is true. The priesthood keys and power held by the remaining eleven apostles after the death of the Savior are now again held in full authority and right by the Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I encourage you all to take the term 'Saint' and give all time talent and energy into being a true disciple of Jesus Christ. This message in not hapless. It is not hopeless. It is not to be consigned to the ash heap of history. It is to change us and change the world, and it is every second of every day. I love you all so much.

Elder Dahle