Sunday, January 26, 2014

Week 17 - Getting ready to train

Week 17
This week was so good! It has been ridiculously cold here. I refuse to shower without boiling my water first. We did some ukay-ukay shopping this week and I literally have paid like 5 American dollars total for all my new clothes. LOVE IT. I went to the meeting for trainer's last week and got a little nervous to train. But President Peterson thinks I am ready, so I trust him.

 I have been doing this new thing where i write down every word I don't understand that I hear. It has helped me learn so many new tagalog words! I tried it before, but I got too overwhelmed because I was writing down like a hundred words. Now it's about 10 a day. Anyway, I gave a talk in church yesterday and the members told me i have been getting better so that's good news!

This week we have been following up on all our referrals from members. And teaching our new investigators. YES. My area is officially on the up. We are seeing so much excitement and progression in our investigators and our members. We had a really awesome ward council meeting yesterday and our leaders are doing so much to help us! They are the best. We have lots of hope for our investigators(: Hoping and praying for 3 baptisms in February.

Okay so cool experience this week: I taught a lesson in english! To a guy from California. He just got married to a filipina and it going back on monday. Okay so we OYM'ed this guy back in October and have not been able to get ahold of them since then. Which we were really sad about because they actually approached us and explained how they are looking for a religion but really want to try it all before they decide. Anyway, so we finally taught them this week! And it was SUCH an amazing lesson. I basically taught it all because my compie was a little nervous about english. Anyway, it was interesting to see how different his concerns were than all the fiilipinos. But they both really felt The Spirit and my companion bore a beautiful testomony about coming to know the truthfulness of the Book Of Mormon. It was one of those times where The Lord guided us to them at the right time for them. I love the feeling I have when I am an instrument in his hands. I am so blessed to be here!

Have a great week all! Wish me luck with my new anak!
-Sister Gaspar de Alba

me & this one have been in the same district for the first (almost) 6 months of our missions! She is such an example of motivation for me. She is a great missionary, I am so lucky to be her friend

me&my kabarkada (posse) thats my new fav tagalog word p.s. i saw my nanay last week! and my batchmate- sister williams! 

this is my companion- poor thing. We were all 4 of us sick this week with fevers, and coughs and all that nonsense.

this ones for you dad! this is  hot pina pandesal. SO DANG GOOD. its hot sweet bread with pineapple sugary goodness inside. 

the lunch crowd! i love Filipinos! They set up tables outside after church to eat all together before all the meetings. and they always insist on feeding us. Definitely no complaints from me!
me and brother Anthony. He makes my day every time we see him. I love talking to him. He always wants to give the opening prayer in our lessons and The Spirit is so strong when he prays. The first time He prayed, i totally cried. I told him: Anthony, thank you for praying. Heavenly Father understood all that you said and He is so happy to hear from you. 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Week 16 - The real week 16

Week 16. Okay now really is week 16.

I"M TRAINING! I am seriously so excited! Especially since I might train my companion from the MTC! She finally comes this transfer. I doubt I will...but that would just be awesome. Anyway not much to report on this week. Just cold weather and lots of referrals which means new investigators. YES. I am happy(: Me and my companion are enjoying our last few weeks together since she is probably going back to Tacloban. My companion has had a fever on and off since last Wednesday. We will probably get that checked out soon...maybe. Missionaries have this thing where they refuse to acknowledge when they are ill.

This week we had the Are broadcast with the Area President, Elder Nielsen. They told us all about the area goals for 2014. So of course all us missionaries are super excited and all worked up about new goals. classic. But really- we have SUCH a wonderful ward and stake here. The members are so strong. They often sacrifice so much time and money and effort to be at the church all the time for so many activities! And to work with us. They are inspiring. Especially since the church has only been here for 50 years.

Shout out to The Crane's for awesome letters that made my week! THANK YOU! so much(:

Sister Gaspar de Alba

goodbyes last week to my favorite missionary on earth. Sister Meti! She emailed me this week and is safe back in India now. :(

goodbyes to this one too! She got transferred.

this is right outside our house!

this is me every morning this week. i'm literally filipino. no fan during the night, and i slept in 2 shirts and a sweater AND pants. And i walked around all day yesterday in a sweater. I think it's been around 70 degrees

Monday, January 13, 2014

Week 16 - post holiday doldrums

Week 16... yata?

Literally I am loosing track of time. The days feel like hours. This week was good! Still struggling to find people to teach but we are visiting like 10 member's homes this week and hoping to really help them bring their friends into their homes to hear the gospel from us. This week was cold! And cloudy and rainy. I LOVED it. I got a really awesome package this week! Shout out to the Herrera's for making my month. My companion loved the fruit roll-ups! The other sisters in our ward had a baptism on Friday that was so good. We got most of the members to wear Sunday's Best and we really had their support in coming on time. It made such a difference in the Spirit that we felt, and how smoothly it all ran. Hopefully it will be a new tradition! Sister A got transferred...sad! She was one of the Sisters I live with. But Sister T came yesterday and she is hilarious! We are having some really great meetings with our auxiliaries this week. I am way excited! Our bishop and Relief Society President came with us yesterday afternoon to our less-active focus families. It was so great, the families were really happy to feel supported that much from the ward. This week I learned a lot about trusting Heavenly Father. Basically the theme of my mission so far, because I’m kinda stubborn! But I really just felt His assurance in a lot of the changes that we have been making here in my area, and just in my missionary work in general. I know He knows us better than we know ourselves. Because He can see the part of us we haven’t reached yet, all the good qualities that we need to work for. I am starting to understand that more. (: And i am so grateful as always to be here helping those I teach learn that too.
Sister Gaspar de Alba

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Week 14 - Happy New Year

GREAT week this week. First of all- shout out to the Slade's for writing me. I got your letter on a day I really needed it! Thanks, seriously. We celebrated the new year and I made some really necessary changes for myself. We got to teach more as people are all coming back from their provinces. This wee me and my companion took more time to walk, stop and talk to people, and really just enjoy the beauty of our area.

One of our investigators we just started teaching 2 weeks ago is seriously the best. She is one of those people that has truly been prepared for a long time by The Lord to become a member of the church. It's amazing to work with her fiancee's extended family who had mostly all previously been less-active. We are seeing so much success and happiness in their lives because of the active mother who has really taken action to help her family come back to the gospel. I am definitely seeing the miracles that come from members and missionaries working together! I really feel Heavenly Father working through us, all of us together.

We had a pretty interesting lesson this week with a Less Active member that kinda challenged my ability to listen to The Spirit. This wonderful sister has really turned away completely from the gospel, and it has been really sad to see the process. As we have asked her about her experiences and found out what kinda spured this, my companion and I felt really prompted to plead with her to read the Book of Mormon again and pray about it. She had not ever really studied it, even though she was an active member for many years. I have realized over and over again on my mission that being converted to the Book of Mormon and the doctrine of Jesus Christ is what will keep us grounded. We cannot expect to be blessed by Heavenly Father if we don't do the  things he asks of us. Tough Lesson for a stubborn 19 year old like me! But I am so grateful to be learning it and to have that wake up call of how important the Book of Mormon is.

This week I kinda had a hard time staying happy throughout the day. Missions are kinda weird like that, they bring out the best and worst in you! Whatever you choose to let come out. I kept reading my patriarchal blessing looking for something that I felt like I needed to understand from it. I was seriously so frustrated! Because I knew there was something I was over looking. I have to have read it like 20 times this week. Anyway, after ending our fast yesterday I read it again. I really prayed with everything I have to be able to find what I was missing. I found it(: The council I needed really stuck out to me. I am so grateful for the power of prayer and personal revelation. Heavenly Father knows and loves us all so much.

Have a great week everyone!

Happy 2014!

classic sis missionary outfit. we are here once a week since i love writing

just your local vaca

YES. one of the families in our ward has this AWESOME hat. i hope everyone gets the reference. 

me chattin it up with a goat. the people around us laughed pretty hard at an american girl speaking tagalog to a goat.