Elder Jordan Royal

Elder Jordan Royal
Jordan hugs big sister Kelli

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Rumors Confirmed! Cabanatuan It Is!

            So the rumors were true after all.  I am now a zone leader in Cabanatuan, serving in Branch 8 with Elder Dadison.  Elder Dadison is an awesome guy.  We get along great.  We both go home at the same time.  Before I tell you all about Cabanatuan and transfers, I guess I'll start with the beginning when I left my beloved area of Victoria. 
While "real Jordan" was being transferred to Cabanatua, "fake Jordan" was hanging out with us
at Royal's 1st birthday party and sporting a mustache
            I had to say goodbye to a lot of people that I became so close with in Victoria.  For the last two days in Victoria, we had Jerimiah, a ward missionary, work all day with us.  He just turned in his mission papers, so he should be getting his call anytime soon now.  It was hard for me to say goodbye to James, Reymark, Leslie, and other people that I taught, baptized, or who will be baptized in a couple of weeks.  Korin and Jomer were supposed to be baptized this Saturday, so that probably happened.  I don't know, but I feel sure it did.  Victoria will continue to progress in the hands of Elder Rabino, so I'm not worried about that.  I really didn't want to leave, especially since I had to pack (haha).  Transfer announcements were crazy, even though we are not allowed to have "fake transfer announcements" anymore.  We played a game to get our transfer announcements and you couldn’t get your announcements until you won.  There were a lot of changes and a lot of people that got transferred.  Elder Carrasco stepped down and was sent to open an area with in another elder in the Camaling Zone, and Sister Sharp went there for her last transfer, too.  They will both end their missions there, so I won't see them again until I'm back in the States.  I kinda got the feeling I was going to get a new assignment when President Martino walked by, smiled, and said, "Elder Royal!  You ready to work?"  I just thought that was a typical "mission president" question, so I told him, "Yes, President....wait, what does that mean???"  He just laughed at me and said while walking away, "You'll find out."

Here, Kelli and Royal celebrate Royal's first birthday.  If you look carefully, you can see "fake Jordan" "blowing up"  the picture in the background (ha)

            The bus ride to Cabanatuan went by a lot faster than I thought it would.  I think it was only about an hour trip.  When I got to the Cabanatuan Stake Center (where I now attend church).  Oh, and gues what we have in the chapel here (. . . wait for it . . . wait for it . . . ) . . .  AIR CONDITIONING!!!  I saw a lot of familiar faces.  The first Elder I saw was my good 'ole trainer/tatay, Elder Declaro, who's still in San Isidro.  He showed me a picture he took on his camera when Brad and Whitney came to visit there, so that was both cool and a bummer (since I would have loved to have seen them, too).  I met two other elders that met Brad and Whitney: Elder Pangan from Balibago (who's now in my zone and in my house) and Elder Neemia from Cabiao.  Yeah, I’m a little jealous that all these other guys got to see my visiting family, but that's fine.  At least some people got to meet them and tell me about it.  I also saw Elder Talento again, who I swear has gained like 20 or 30 pounds since I last saw him.  He used to be pretty thin and buff, but now has gotten really chubby (haha).  He's still awesome, though.  I'll be seeing them both again tomorrow at ZL/DLC in Cabanatuan.  Elder Talento's still in Baler, so he's sleeping at our house tonight, because they're extremely far away.  Elder Dadison and I met up and moved into my new house, which is pretty close to the stake center and really close to the senior couple (Elder and Sister Lutz).  It's the same house where Elder and Sister Bowcutt lived, so I have a lot of good memories from that house.  It makes me miss the Bowcutts, though.  They were great missionaries and we became good friends.

Here are some pictures of Brad and Whitney's trip to Cabaio posted by Danica Patiag,
whose family Brad taught and baptized in 2003-04
Danica with Beckham at church in Cabaio last Sunday
            The work here in Cabanatuan is really good.  The entire zone is putting up good numbers that lead to success, especially in our branch.  Elder Dadison and his last companion found a part-member family (the Manuel Family) who have been very progressing and all of the children will be baptized on February 9 (Lovely, Thalia, Bless, and John Paul).  Their mom was less active for 25 years, but since Elder Dadison found them, she's now returned and is active again in the Church.  We also have another part member family getting baptized on Feb. 16 (The Arahan children and Sister Roquell).  I'm still new here, so I don't remember everyone's names, but it's getting better.  Elder Dadison and his companion were getting 11 investigators at sacrament meeting every week, which I thought was impossible, but I saw it.  We had nine investigators at sacrament meeting yesterday.  Elder Dadison and I are really excited to work with each other and see improvements in the area and with the members of our zone.  I still can't believe that Heavenly Father gave me this huge responsibility and has this much trust in me.  I want to do all I can to be worthy of this new challenge.  He's given me a great companion, Elder Dadison, who is from Jensen, Mindanao.  Although my heart still yearns for Victoria, and I miss my friends there, I am also very excited about what they future holds for us here.  I will make new friends, see hearts change with the light of Christ, and will form forever memories here, as I have in my other areas.  Life is very, very good.

            I was going to send you pictures this week, but I left my camera in our rat-infested house.   Saya.  (Yeah, we're trying to kill 'em.)  Oh well.  I guess I'll have to send you twice as many pictures next week.

            Thanks for the updates on everything.  Good luck on your mission, Chelsea!  I know you'll love it!  I hope that you all have a good week.  Today starts the nine week transfer, so I have a lot time to get to be with Elder Dison and become familiar with the area.  Ight.  Ingat everyone!  Mahal Kita!

            Elder Jordan "Zoolander” Royal
Since Jordan did not provide any pictures this week - we want to include another one from Royal's birthday!

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