Elder Jordan Royal

Elder Jordan Royal
Jordan hugs big sister Kelli

Monday, April 8, 2013

Summer, Summer GO AWAY!

           Curse this sweltering summer heat!  Summer arrived this week and it came fast and furious! It's been at least 96 degrees WITH humidity, so it has been rough.  I'm a little jealous to hear that you guys have had cooler weather there right now.  (I'm even jealous of Brennen and Steven Jex in Germany and Russia where there is still snow.  Well . . . maybe not.  Oh yeah, Steven, nice job falling off your bike.  That sounds fun.  (Just kidding, of course.)  We don’t have to worry about falling off bikes here, since we don’t have them.  Mahal kita, bro.)  So Mom, I am glad to hear that you enjoyed your trip to Washington, D.C.  Isn't the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier awesome?  When I was in Washington, DC, during the Church History trip, I am pretty sure it was the hottest day of the year and felt pretty much as feels right now here in the Philippines - hot, sticky and miserable.

Jordan & Elder Revillo working with the branch missionaries
            We have struggled a bit to find new investigators these past two weeks.  We only found one this week, but that looks really promising.  I wasn't there for when we made the first contact, though, because I was in Talavera for exchanges.  (I was conducting some baptismal interviews - more on that later.)  Elder Revillo said that they met Tony while tracking.  Tony agreed to have them teach a short lesson, limiting them to only 10 minutes.  So Elder Revillo taught the Restoration and at the 10 minute mark, Tony cut him off, because he had to go to work.  But, Tony told him: "Come back, because I want my wife and son to hear this (in English)."  They described Tony as a very impressive man, with leadership potential (even as a future bishop or mission president).  When I went to teach Tony later in the week, he wasn't there.  (Dang.)  This week for sure.  I'm pretty sure Tony is an answer to our prayers to find and baptize a future Melchizedek Priesthood holder with strong leadership skills.  So, I am hoping that we're going to be able to go back and teach Tony this week.  (It is not uncommon for us to return for second appointments only to have the parents hide and send a young child to the door to tell us they are not home.  That did not happen with Tony (and let’s hope it doesn’t), but it did occur in another instance.  It is a strange thing, but I have seen that a lot here, where adults panic when we return and do not hesitate to have their children lie for them.)

This is what happens when you give chalk and a chalkboard to Jordan while he's fasting
           I went on two exchanges this week for baptismal interviews - the first in Talavera and then the second one in our area with a brand new missionary.  I really enjoyed the interviews.  One of then was the mother of Shirley, who I had interviewed for baptism a couple weeks ago.  She shared her conversion story and recounted all the things she had done to gain a strong testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Shirley’s mother said that she received a powerful answer to prayer and cannot deny it.  She was baptized on Saturday, so that was cool. The other two other people I interviewed just got married.  Their son is actually presently serving as a missionary, so that was really cool.  The husband is extremely quiet.  We sat there in silence for what seemed like about five minutes after I would ask him a question and his prayer was extremely quiet.  But, the Spirit was strong.  Their son has greatly blessed his family through his missionary service.  He will be returning home to an eternal family.  Yay!  I then had exchanges with Elder Kadarimia from New Zealand.  He's a really nice guy, and I was very surprised at how well he is already able to speak Tagalog.  He had some occasional grammar errors, but the Spirit was so strong while he taught, even when he would start speaking English sometimes.  I have learned that the Gift of Tongues does not mean speaking a foreign language perfectly, but that the Spirit is strong so that those listening understand and feel was is being taught with conviction - despite grammatical errors.  Thank goodness for the Gift of Tongues, as my Tagalog still isn't the greatest.  I am always working to improve it, but the Spirit makes up the difference.
Jordan with Shirley (right), recently baptized, and her mother
            We had ZL/DL Conference on Tuesday with President Martino, and he was pleased with our work this last month.  I was pretty happy with our efforts in March, too.  We have awesome missionaries in our zone.  We talked about Agency and Following Up on Commitments that we give to the people we teach, and I was able to learn a bit more about how to obtain firm commitments and always following up.
            Well, I guess that's about it for me.  Keep cool.  Oh wait, that's just me.  I'm sweating a lot right now even while I'm typing.  I have to endure another hot, steamy summer for the next two months.  Yay!  Alright.  I love you guys and hope that all's good in Vegas.  Ingat kayo!

             Elder Jordan "I’m Seriously Melting” Royal

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