Sunday, November 24, 2013

My new companion is Elder Villanueva!  He is from the same batch of Elder Manicdo so both of my tatay's will go home at the same time.  He's from Ilooiloo which is close to where Judy is from.  This guy is so funny, he has so much energy and he I know he truly cares about me.  We've only been together for a little less than a week now and I can already see a  big progression in my Tagalog thanks to him!  Almost every second of the day he is asking me what stuff is in Tagalog and if I don't know he tells me.  About our work.... well this week has had a lot of punts!  We even had one day where we weren't able to teach one lesson!  We have one difficult area; there aren't a lot of members here so it's hard to get member present lessons along with being able to teach single women.  But Ann Bon (one of our progressing investigators) finally came to church this last week and she looked so excited!  Her boyfriend Rading is a less-active member and his mother came to church as well.  Rading even wore a white shirt and tie.  He only had one tie so I gave him two of mine; I just can't not want to help these people.  They've changed my life.  A family like the Saqullo's only comes around once in a great while.  But yesterday we gave a blessing to a RC Brother Benjamin.  He's 89 years old and he is the nicest person I have ever met in my life. He doesn't know Tagalog very well (He speaks Ilookano or however you spell it) but yet he still comes to church every week.  It was a very humbling moment when I walked into the room and saw him lying on the bed with the room lit by candle light.  He hadn't eaten anything for two days and he didn't even have enough strength to sit up so Bro. Olivar had to help him while we gave him the blessing.  I almost cried during the blessing because I really do care about this man; when you look into his eyes it's like you're looking at the Savior.  They're filled with love and compassion for everyone. These people are defiantly very special to our Father in Heaven, you know it by even just looking at these people.

1 comment:

  1. Elder B. Cole,

    Wow... the love that you've developed for the people of your mission is heartwarming.
    If any change has happened to you this month, it is in your heart. I can feel it is so full. I'm sorry to hear about Yolanda, you were indeed lucky that the only effects you felt was a brown out and a day of rain. As you know, not everyone was that lucky.
    50 pesos to get to church? Can't they start a new branch in that area? If there's that many investigators, it might be a good idea to find a meeting house within walking distance. It's just hard to ask people to pay so much and travel so far to get to church on Sundays, especially while they're still just coming to know the gospel...
    What you felt in the water with Andrew, was remarkable. You are coming to know more the enabling power of the Atonement, and it's a testimony builder for me to see that in action. "when I stood in the water with him I truly felt the love that our Heavenly Father has for His children, after the baptism he told me that I was his idol because even though I don’t know the language very well, I tried my best to teach in a way that he could understand and that he truly felt like I loved and cared about him... he’s preparing to serve a mission in a year!" You're truly a great example elder. I can feel God's love in your work.
    I'm really gonna miss Elder Manicdo, his powerful testimony, and the true brotherly companionship that you two have developed. Really, I don't know if I've seen a better definition of the word companionship than to what you had with Elder Manicdo. You were so united in the spirit, and by so much brotherly love.
    Elder Villanueva sounds great! I'm glad he is so energetic and I can see that he will be a huge instrument in getting your language to where it needs to be to best help the people and push forward the work.
    Thank you for considering the Philippines to be "one of the greatest nations in all the world" and for finding Filipinos to be "definitely very special to our Father in Heaven, you know it by even just looking at these people." Thank you for your whole-hearted, selfless service elder. May God be with you till we meet for the first time.