Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Week 42


July 12, 2011
Dear Family and Friends,

The weather continues to be quite warm and very humid. This is the rainy season so we are getting some showers to cool things down. The humidity is something I don’t think I will ever get accustomed to. We are just wet all of the time. 

This has been a good week. Our appointments have been successful and we seem to be making more progress with the less active members. They are starting to come out to church and hopefully will continue to do so. We have a very sweet sister in our branch that is having some financial difficulties. Her mother is very sick and requires kidney dialysis twice weekly. She has borrowed so much to keep her mother alive but is having difficulty making ends meet. She has a good job but the medical bills are staggering for her. The socialized medicine here is such that if you don’t have the money you simply don’t get the treatment. Well, she borrowed from a member of the branch and she doesn’t feel comfortable coming to church knowing that she can’t pay him back for a while. As we were coming home from our visit we had the impression to ask her to help teach us Tagalog and we would pay her for the tutoring. We scheduled 10 sessions and were able to pay back the debt she owed to the member. It was great to help her help herself (does that make sense?).  If we can get her to become active she will bless this branch. She is well educated, very distinguished and has a lot of contacts/friends that could be introduced to the church. We are praying that she will see her potential in the church. We love teaching her and have enjoyed our discussions about the plan of salvation, priesthood authority and church organization.
Friday we had our first interview with President Stucki. He is very different from President Howard in his mannerisms (and he should be) and he will be great for this mission. We look forward to serving with him.  We still have not heard anything about the possible transfer to Palawan or wherever. We do know that our lease here runs out on July 31. We will probably move somewhere
Last Sunday while we were visiting one of the branches, a Sister that I was able to teach about temples and family history came and asked us to come to her home for dinner with the sister missionaries. This sister is a recent convert of 7 months. She was fellowshipped by Br Jun and when he left suddenly many were wondering if the converts would remain. She has been faithful and has been called to teach the Gospel Essentials Class in Sunday School. We sat through her first lesson. It lasted almost 20 minutes. After the class I spoke with her and thanked her for her lesson. She said that everyone else makes this teaching look so easy but it’s difficult. I reassured her that it would somehow get easier and that she is a remarkable person being able to teach the class after joining the church just 7 months ago. She truly is remarkable. And, she has never missed a Sunday meeting since being baptized. She wants to go to the temple. Well, dinner was great (sometimes you worry what they are going to feed you) and we had a great discussion after eating. These people are great examples of faithful saints.
The work continues to go forward. We are fortunate to be a part of this work. We love the people and are learning more each day about the far reaching effects of the gospel and about ourselves. I love to study the doctrine and ponder its wonderful truths. I feel sometimes that I am only skimming the surface of what there is to really know. I am finding that the hard part is the ‘becoming’ part of this gospel. It is easy to know (if one will put forth the effort to read and ponder) but much more difficult to become like Him. I just keep on trying. This is a great work.
We hope that you are all well and enjoying the heat of summer. Have fun and be safe. We love you and love hearing from you. We miss you and pray for you every day. We hope you can feel the effect of our prayers. We certainly feel your prayers in our life. Remember to BE good, DE good, and BE men and women of Christ. And as always, remember to always say your prayers.
Mom and Dad, Grandma and Grandpa, Janene and Grant

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