Monday, July 16, 2012

Week 93

June 18, 2012

Dear Family and Friends,

Tamina Morgan


Greetings once again from the beautiful islands of the Philippines.

The rainy season is upon us and we have the luxury of being wet on both the inside and the outside!  We love the beautiful, lush green foliage here. We were thinking that when we come back to Utah everything will be brown – that will be a shock for us. How is everyone doing this week? Are you kids enjoying summer break? What fun things are you doing? 
We were blessed this week to have a Family Home Evening at our house on Monday. We had 18 people in our home. Sister Jona taught us how to make pancit. It turned out pretty good. She took us to the market to buy all of the ingredients and then came over about 6 pm to teach us how to make it. I told her that if the pancit turned out okay then she would get all of the credit, but if it did not turn out okay, then it would be my fault. We got a good laugh out of that. She assured me that it would be good! Pancit is a noodle dish that the Filipinos usually make for special occasions such as a birthday. The noodles are thin and look like a rice noodle but they are called ‘cornstarch sticks’. 

Mom also made the Filipino fruit salad and brownies. We all had a good time. We had a good time teaching them some of the songs we would sing when we had little kids. They enjoyed our fast version of Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes and Once There Was a Snowman. Of course we did the actions too. We played a short game of Pictionary and then had a lesson about Covenants. We would like to do this again before we leave for home. I think they enjoyed being in our home. 
Pres & Sis Laureo, Mary Rose,Hdayir Jave, Elders Chiong &Labinpuno, Joshua Quiniones

Elder Labinpuno, Joshua Q, Elder Villa, Mark Perez, Eldon, Ruchie Rivera, Elder Morris
Elder Labinpuno and Hdayir Jave Laureo (his twin)

playing pictionary

Sister Jonna Quinoines, Hdayir Jave Laureo, Jeriko Q., Ruchie Rivera
Tuesday we traveled to Quezon and Rizal for District Meeting and apartment checks. The roads are just not getting any better and the rain doesn’t seem to help. There were a number of ‘washout’ areas on the road this trip. Of course, we can’t travel to Rizal unless it rains on us and this trip was no different.  While in Rizal we took the opportunity to visit with one of the members there. 

We visited with Sister Juan. Her husband was the Branch President in Rizal and he died a few months back at the age of 34. I think we surprised her that we would come all this way to visit her. We wanted to find out how she was doing and we hope that we were able to help her somehow with our visit. She is another remarkable member of this Church. 
Saturday and Sunday was the Narra District Conference. Sister Stucki assigned mom to conduct the 2-hour auxiliary training on Saturday afternoon. Mom put a lot of preparation into this training and it showed.  She did a great job even through the noise of the rain and the brownout made for some inconvenient moments – but we survived. I was asked to introduce the Area Goals in the Priesthood Leadership Meeting. The District has utilized us a great deal in training and teaching while we have been here in Narra. That has been a blessing for us. It has kept us very busy and very involved.  We were also asked to speak in the Saturday Adult Session of Conference. As mom began to speak, the District President asked if we could use and interpreter so the people could understand better. He wanted them to hear and understand what we were going to teach (maybe we should have prepared more since this was the case). Mom asked one of the Zone Leaders to come up and interpret for her. 
Elder Labinpuno

 When I stood I spoke Tagalog for a bit then my mind just went completely blank. I really wanted to try but the words just didn’t come. Well, in Tagalog, I said,” I would like to …” then in English I said … “have a translator”. All of the people just laughed.  I looked in the audience and asked one of our newest Filipino missionaries to translate for me.

Elder Domantay
 He was so embarrassed but I asked him to share his testimony with the members about why he decided to go on a mission. He is a convert to the Church of just over 18 months and the only member of his family. He was told by his parents that if he went on a mission he could not come back to their home. It was a touching story. He then translated for me and he was a very good translator. We have tremendous missionaries here!!!
After the Saturday conference we went home and fixed mac and cheese for the 14 missionaries in our Zone. What a day. We cooked 12 cups of macaroni (we needed to cook more but that was all we could get into our largest pan) because there was not any left over. Who would have figured that this would be such a hit with the elders? We should have discovered this long ago – it would have made our cooking for Family Home Evenings much, much easier. Mom also made the Filipino fruit salad and they loved that. Sunday rolled around and we just wanted to sleep.

Sisters preparing the flowers for the chapel

We came into conference and were treated to a satellite broadcast from Salt Lake with Sister Ann Dibb, Elder Edwards and Elder L. Tom Perry. It was excellent. After meeting we went home and studied, read and slept. This has been a busy week! We like it that way. 
We are grateful to be assigned here. We love serving as missionaries. We hope that you are all doing well and that you are happy and healthy. We love you and pray for you every day. Thank you again for all of your prayers and love. We can feel the strength of your prayers. Remember to BE good, DO good and BE men and women of Christ.  And always remember to say your prayers. 
Mom and Dad, Grandma and Grandpa, Janene and Grant   

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