Man! I can't believe that it's already been over a year since I entered the MTC! On this day a year ago, I was with my awesome MTC district watching General Conference for our first weekend in the mission. I can remember that day very vividly. I also the day that I entered the MTC. I can't believe it's been a year since then. SOOOOOO much has happened in my life this past year. Not only for me, but for you guys, too! I'm excited to see what will happen to us this year. Yeah!
|Jordan with Elder Batingal, and the bishop and his wife|
Well, a lot has happened this week. We taught tons of lessons this week (over 40 again), but it felt like nothing was really coming out of them, because only one investigator attended church and the attendance at church seems to be decreasing each week. A lot of people we teach, investigator or less active, are waiting for the chapel to be finished before returning to church, they want the bishopbric to change, the ward to split, or provide some other excuse. It's hard to hear those kind of things. The members don't know that the Church organization is/and will always be true and perfect, but the members aren't. Come on. We're all human aren't we? I sometimes wonder what it be like if a church member offended me (accidently or on purpose), would I forgive them and go back to church? I would hope so. We only hurt ourselves when we take offense and hold onto negative feelings.
Anyway, as I said earlier, I thought that we didn't really accomplish anything, because of the outcome of the week. However, on Sunday afternoon, we went and taught one of our part-member investigators, Mak-Mak. He's living with his extremely rich cousins, the Cortados, who are very active in the Church. Their daughter is actually serving right now in the Philippines Angeles Mission. Guess which Zone she's in - the Tarlac Zone. She's only about an hour drive away from home. I don't know how all that worked, but it's what the Lord wants. Her mom is always asking us how she's doing and stuff and giving us letters to give to her. She goes home in January, so that's not too long. Anyway, Mak-Mak is 18, and he's super awesome. He's been taught by the missionaries for some time and been coming to church, so it's like he's already a member. Well, we taught an awesome about the feelings of the Holy Ghost. Many people do not understand how the Spirit works, so after we explained him the feelings of the Spirit and used Moroni 7 to teach hime about how to know if something is of God. Mak-Mak has been feeling the Spirit for awhile, but he really didn't know what he was feeling until we taught him that lesson. We then invited him to be baptized on October 20. He gladly accepted and is excited.
|Jordan with Elder Batingal and Randy|
Other than Mak-Mak, we don't have any other investigators as far along as him. However, we have others that are progressing. Like 22 year-old Mark. He received a witness that Joseph Smith was a true prophet and that the Book of Mormon is true, but he's not coming to church. We'll probably have to teach him about Keeping the Sabbath Day Holy. He's got a lot of potential, though. We also talked with a lot of people on the street this week. When we would go back for a return appointment with them, most of them just run and hide in their house. I don't understand why people don't just come out and plainly tell us that they're not interested. That would make life easier for everyone. We respect all religions. We only invite people to come unto Christ and add to their knowledge about Him. We did have a pretty funny experience with this yesterday. We went to teach this old Tatay, who'd been really nice to us during past lessons, but he hid when we came to his house. When we left, we came back about a half hour later and saw him in the bukid. We decided to see if we could catch up with him. He was pretty far, we kept getting closer and closer to him. We really weren't walking that fast, but as we closed in on him, he began walking faster, and did not look back. When he got to the highway, we saw him practically running. By the time we arrived at the highway, he was gone. (Haha. O Tatay.)
Elder Batingal and I are having fun together. He goes home at the end of the month. We like to joke with each other and quote funny quotes from the Tagalog version of, "The Restoration" video. "Joesph, matagal na hindi ka nagsisimba" (You haven't been coming to church Joseph). "Ganoon ba? Huwag kang maging palawo iho" (I see. Be aware of pride boy.). It's only funny because the way he says it (haha).
|Jordan, doing some sole searching|
Well, I thought I wasn't going to tell you this, but I'm pretty much out of stories, so I guess I'll tell you. So for the first time in my life, I got a really painful boil on my chin. Like, it was numbing my chin and it hurt to talk. I always shower and have no idea how I got it. Anyway, that was when I first got here. Then on Monday, it got to point where I could get rid of it. I'll just tell you that it consisted of a hot towel, a needle, and some anti-bac ointment. So that one's gone. Then a few days later, I got another one, but in a more painful spot: ride smack dab in the middle of my left armpit. Boy, it hurts a lot more than the one on my face. I think that the bacteria is still in my body and traveled to a different spot. I'm taking antibiotics, so it should be gone this week. Hopefully by tomorrow, because it really hurts to move my arm. I don't think I've ever been through so much pain like that before until now. Wow. I'm not telling you this to worry you, (trust me, I'm totally fine), but to inform you about what's going on in my life. (Job’s entire body was covered by boils. Wow, I can’t begin to imagine how terrible that would be.)
|Not a sole survives|
I think that'll do it for this week. We have ZL/DL Conference this week on Wednesday, so I'll hopefully get some mail (including Mom's package for me). I hope that everyone is going well over there. I can't believe that General Conference is already this weekend! I watched that for my first Sunday in Mamonit. Time flies. Well. I can't wait to see you guys in another year, but I won't let that hurt the work. I will keep working with all my heart, might, mind and strength, with an eye single to the glory of God! Alright. Peace! Mahal ko kayo.
Elder Jordan "1 Year Missionary" Royal