Monday, September 8, 2014

Dear Mom, Dad, and Cole Family,

I am now in my 11th transfer in the mission!!  Where does the time go?  Literally I would like to know where the time goes, if any one knows please email me immediately.  And..... Elder Ursua and I are staying together for one more transfer.  We were both so sure that he was going to be transferred but well.... here he is.  Oh and also.... Merry Christmas from the Philippines ha ha!!!  They just started playing Christmas music everywhere so I guess 4 months is close to Christmas in the tropical islands.

This past week has had it's ups and downs.  At the first part of last week we really struggled to get lessons and nothing seemed to be going right.  But we had exchanges with the Zone Leaders on Thursday and after than everything just seemed to get better.  Just for fun though; when Elder Sondregger and I were tracting we saw this guy watching t.v in his house so we tried to tract him.  But he literally just walked away and hid from us when he knew that we knew he was there.  It was pretty funny but everyone has their free agency.  Another blessing is that we met the Barangay captain of one of our areas and he said that Elder Ursua and I could speak at the end of their meeting so we could introduce our message to the people.  What a better way to find new investigators!!!  We're going to their meeting on Wednesday so I hope it goes well.  We have also been thinking about different ways that we can find people to teach because our area pretty big but there aren't a great deal of people.  So we decided that we're going to try to start an English class and see if that can help us gain to people to teach.  Lets hope that all goes where there because I don't really know how to teach English, I just can speak it.  

Earlier today when we were shopping we saw some of the departing missionaries and man it made me think of how fast that day is going to come when I'm in their position.  But I'm not going to lie I did get kind of trunky for a little bit after I saw them but oh well... being a missionary is great!!  I also had the opportunity to talk to a man from Anchorage Alaska.  He made the comment "Hey look, the Mormons are here".  So I grabbed the opportunity to talk to him.  It was funny at first because I had a hard time speaking English to him.  Every time I tried to speak I ended up speaking in Tagalog.  For now that is a great sign because it means I can finally speak this language at a decent level!  But we talked for a good ten minutes and he told me that he had served in the Vietnam war and that he loved the Philippines because everything is so cheap compared to America and of course that it is easy to get hitched.  

Just some advice for mom, think of my mission in transfers and it will go by a lot faster (because from the sound of your letter you're already starting the count down).  I only have 6 transfers left and I can guarantee that that time will go by in a flash.  But might I just add that being a missionary is hard... and being a senior companion is harder!!  I don't think all of the stuff that I did to prepare for my mission could have prepared me for what has happened these past six weeks.  I've had my struggles this past transfer with the adjustment because I was used to having a lot of investigators to teach and not having to tract all of the time.  But here tracting is the main way to get lessons because our teaching pool is still pretty small!  It's been rough because tracting isn't exactly my strong suit but I've been trying to do my best to overcome that struggle.  Where I'm going with this is that no matter what we are experiencing or no matter how hard our situation seems to be; if we turn the Lord He will always provide. In His time.  That's the hard part for me because sometimes I want things right now but if we are patient in our afflictions like the sons of Mosiah, everything will work out for the best.  Well take care and good luck with all that you do.  I am so grateful for all that you guys have done for me in my life because without you guys I wouldn't be anything.  Mahal na mahal ko po kayo!!!  May God be with you till we meet again.

                                           -Elder Cole

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