Elder Jordan Royal

Elder Jordan Royal
Jordan hugs big sister Kelli

Monday, September 24, 2012

Greetings From . . . . . . . . .

            Victoria, Tarlac Zone!  That’s my new area.  Yes, I got transferred this week after being in Mamonit for over six months.  I'll miss the members and our recent converts, but I was really excited about my new assignment.  My new companion is Elder Batingal.  This is his last transfer, so he'll be the second companion that I've sent home.  Elder Batingal is an incredible worker, humble, and charitable.  I was pleasantly surprised.  He's really sprinting to the end of his mission.  That's the missionary I hope to be at the end of the my mission.  But, before I get into more details about my area, I think I'll go back to my last week in Mamonit.
Jordan with Jayson, Bessie, Rofina and Lolita in Mamonit a few days before his transfer
            Every companionship changed in the Sta. Ignacia Stake this transfer, except for Elders Retaga and Witt.  Elder Retaga will be sending Elder Witt home this transfer.  That is the fourth time Elder Retaga has served with a missionary in his last transfer before going home.  Before our transfer announcements, we went to the Zone Leader's house to play basketball at 6:00 am at the stake center with our new zone jerseys we bought a couple of weeks ago.  They're so sick!  I forgot to bring my camera today, so I won't be sending pictures.  Sorry. 

            So, now I'm here in Victoria, Tarlac.  I'm still DL, or Relief Society President now, because I'm the DL of two sister companionships.  The cool news is that Sister Sharp, from my MTC group,  is in my district.  Elder Palmer, also from my MTC group, is the new ZL in Angeles City, so that's pretty cool.  I'll see him when we have ZL/DLC (Zone Leader/District Leader Council) with President Martino in a couple of weeks, so I'm looking forward to that. 

            Working with Elder Batingal was really fun this week.  We taught so many lessons, even though we've only been together for about four days.  The work in Victoria is incredible.  This last week, we taught a total of 41 lessons.  Victoria's really big.  It's half city/half bukid.  After being in nothing but bukids for over six months, I actually enjoy them.  The only bad thing about Victoria is that it gets so hot here!  I miss being in the mountains where it was cooler.  There's still some who speak Ilocano here, but it's mostly Tagalog.  Obviously, I am conversant in Tagalog, and prefer it, but I did learn a little bit of Ilocano during my six months in Mamonit, and it's been pretty useful so far.  You know, questions like: "What's your name?""Yes/no", “Good morning/afternoon/evening," "My name is Elder Royal.  You?""Just a little bit""water""Do you have any questions? Additions?  Answers?"  That's about it.  It's fun to use,though.  For the first time on my mission, some little kids asked me what my name was . . . not in English!  They asked me in Ilocano thinking that I wouldn't understand them, but as soon as I answered correctly, they esteemed me as the coolest Joe they had ever seen (haha). 
Jordan with his district in Mamonit on their last Preparation Day adventure before his transfer
             Elder Batingal and I have a good time together.  We get a long very well, so I'm looking forward to this transfer.  We have a lot of progressing investigators, most from part-member families.  Investigators from part-member families are great to teach, because they already have a support system.  The members here are pretty cool, except there's some kind of division within the ward because of some personalities (nothing that can’t be fixed).  The chapel's been going through renovations since April, so we're renting a meeting house until that’s completed.  They say we should be able to go back there by November, so I'll definitely be there for that.  The temporary meeting house isn't the greatest thing in the world, but it's alright.  I'm trying to get to know all of the members and the people in this area, and it's been coming along.  The area is huge, with a bunch of cross streets and neighborhoods, so I probably won't be able to memorize it right away.  It's getting a little familiar, but I probably wouldn't be able to find my way back home if we were to go on splits right now.  I don't have a pillow at the house, so I had to improvise.  Well, okay, I do have a pillow but it's like six inches long and 1/4 inch thick, so it's not really efficient (and technically cannot count as a pillow).  I took some of my clothes and put them inside my pillow case, so that's been working for me so far, but I'm definitely taking Elder Batingal's pillow when he goes home. 
Jordan here with Ruben Rechelle Dave and Reden et al, a few days before his transfer from Mamonit
            Well, I’m sorry that BYU is struggling right now.  But seriously, a two-point conversion instead of playing for OT against BSU last week?!  Oh well, BYU seems to always start the season with a 2-2 record, so at least we are there.  I'm glad that you're alright over there.  I really want to vote, so please get me an absentee ballot as soon as you can.  And Dad, the ZL’s have the letters you and I wrote to deliver to the woman who found my cards and returned them, but have not yet identified the member who received the cards from her.  I’ll let you know if that happens.

            Mahal ko pa kayo.  Ingat.

            Elder Jordan "Victory-a" Royal

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