Thursday, September 20, 2012

A Better World


It is a gloomy, rainy day here in Cebu, but you know what? There's sunshine all up in this soul today. Hahaha I'm lovin life. We had a VERY busy week and it feels good to work hard. It's just non-stop. We know the area a lot better now so we are constantly walking. I got like bruises on my feet, but its all good! haha

Alright, so I decided that I would never want to be famous...because I've gotten a little taste of it here. I thought it would be cool with all these people following me, but if I hear "AMERIKANO!" one more time... I might bust a bubble. Haha i mean it's still really cool but it can get kinda old on a really hot tired day. Haha

I was just thinking to myself "what a life." I'm just a 19 year old kid living in the Philippines teaching about Christ. So awesome. 

Funny story: we were walking on this main road and I noticed that some guys car broke down and it was holding up traffic so I ran up to ask him if he needed help in Bisaya and I eagerly went up to his window and yelled "SIR! DO YOU NEED AN ANSWER?!....i mean HELP?!" hahah tubag and tabang are the words I mixed up. Anyway, we pushed his car out of the way and gave him a pass along card and later in the week, we saw him up in a Baranggay on the other side of town and he said "Thank you for your help." So cool.

Also, the other day we were eating at a Calenderia where they just have all these pots out and you choose what you want so I picked some random stew and I was eating it and thinking "Hmm..this is an interesting texture..." It was chicken liver and hearts. I pushed that aside.

Another day, our whole district was eating at a restaurant and one of the elders said "Hey elder mahaffey, your girlfriend's outside." So I looked out the window and there's this woman pressed up against the glass looking at me smiling SO big, no teeth, mouthing "I lovvve youuu. youre so cuuuute!!" hahah I was laughing so hard because I was really uncomfortable.

So last night we were teaching a less active named Jessica Tumimban and she asked if she could have a blessing of comfort and then asked if I would give it...I was so nervous but I just spoke and even though it might have been really choppy cebuano, it was such a cool experience and she said she's coming to church!

We got like 7 new investigators this week, our lessons have been awesome. It's so cool to share my testimony with people and invite them to come unto Christ and let them know that God is there and he loves them so much. It's awesome to see the literal change in their appearance. They look happier, they look brighter and fresh. I love that. 

I learn so much everyday. My testimony is strengthened every day. My appreciation for you all grows every day. I feel so grateful for the happiness and blessings that the Gospel has brought to my life. I love the scriptures and the constant reminder to be ever faithful. It's by faith that miracles are wrought. I love what Ether says in Chapter 12 about how belief in God means a hope for a better world. I'm so glad to be a part of offering people that hope for a better world. Faith, hope and charity is the fountain of righteousness. 

Be happy and become better every day. Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow God will work wonders among you.

So much love,
Elder Mahaffey

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Holy Balut!!

What up what up how yall derin! Good mornting!

HAHA I'm literally laughing right now thinking about this past week. SO much has happened. First of all, I'm doing SO so much better. I was terrified and in shock last week but then I just thought to myself, You're here for two years, make the most of it. If all I can do is smile and shake peoples hands, then that's what I'll do! hahaha but no the language is actually a lot better in comparison to last week. I'm understanding a lot more. 

Alright here we go. This week I was walking across this bamboo bridge to a house on stilts over the water and I BROKE the bridge..HAHAH I heard a crack and then one leg went all the way through and one leg stayed up. I can hear you laughing right now. So I was stuck there for a second, doing vertical spilts, but then I got up and it was all good. Except, my leg is bruuuised up purple and black hahaha oh I'm still laughin. 

Also, I had BALUT. For those who dont know what it is, it's a chicken egg with the half developed chick inside -- days from hatching. There are pictures. It was ok... definitely different. I'm just glad I didnt throw up. 

So we were riding in a trike (a motorcycle that has a little cart attached to it) and it is SO crunched and small and it's raining real hard outside, the driver hits a pot-hole and the trike tips over.... with us inside... hahah two heavy americans. 

Anyway, everythings an experience here. I love it. I love the people, I love the food, I love the philippines! I love the Lord. I wouldn't be here if I didnt know this Gospel was true. Sitting in these people's bamboo and cement homes, I just wish I could tell them how important this message is and how it could change their lives. Oh man. Yeah it's still extremely hard here, but I'm here for a reason. Things get better. Cast your burdens on the Lord and He'll sustain you. I'm so grateful for these restored truths to the Earth. They bring so much happiness. 

How is everyone??

Stay strong and pray always yall.

Elder Malipayon (MaHappy)
Psalms 55:16-17

Eating Balut!!

This is the way we wash our clothes, wash our clothes, wash our clothes...

Cute kid

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

I'm Alrice! (Alright)

Hey errbody!!

Oh. man. I'm alive! hahah I'm like shaking right now because I have so much to say. I'm in the Philippines! hahaha ok lemme break it down. First off, we get to baggage claim in Cebu and I realize they lost one of my bags...the one with a LOT of important stuff in it. I still don't have it. They said they might know where it is and deliver it to the mission office asap..but no word. Hahaha I was like "OH WELL it's an experience right??" haha. So first day we met President and Sister Schmutz and I love them. Theyre so awesome. First night we all spent at the mission home but the next morning, we met our Trainers and they sent us off right away. My companion is Elder Fudge from Texas. He's been here for a year and we're assigned to OPEN an new area in Canduman, Lil-on. 

So from the moment I step out of the mission home and into the city, I go into shock. Cars beeping and weaving in and out and speeding -- all the Jeepneys have a sticker that says "How's my driving? call this number" and I'm like... for real...? Swerrrvin everywhere, I was so on edge. Then we get to our apartment and the shock continued. Small small apartment about the size of my room at home. The shower is a bucket of water. There is no toilet paper ( just use water). Then we just went out and worked and there's people screamin this language Ive never heard. Apparently it's Cebuano. Oh man. There' chickens and dogs everywhere and I wanna pet them but I feel like I'm gettin diseases just lookin at them..they look like the dogs from I Am Legend...  Anyway, our first day, we were lookin for the church and we got lost..of course..because its a new area and we have NO idea where anything is. Then it starts to rain...then pour...and my umbrellas in the other suitcase that was lost. we were drennnched. so we found the bishops house and the wife is like "AYY KALOOOOY dsak;sdffdjkfhkdsjhjdfh" and of course I cant understand a word but aparently she was giving us directions. Then we found the church. There was a baptism. I had to give a talk in Visayan. ohh...

So then we're walking on the streets again and everywhere I go there's people starin and little kids yellin AMERIKANO!! and grabbing my hands and people yelling at me. hahaha guys, everywhere I go, it looks like I just stepped into a National Geographic magazine. it's unreal. 

The first Sunday was terrifying as well. Everyone tries to talk to me and they talk SO fast and I'm like "Unsa? Unsa? What? what? what?" and everybody's laughin at me. It was very very humbling. But it's all good. Then we went up into this little village baranggay area and its just slums, little shacks and people are sleeping on the floor but everyones so happy and little kids come up to me and grab my hand and bless me (put my hand on their forehead - sign of respect) and it made my day. The food here is pretty good. I'm not really used to SO much rice and sometimes I don't eat at all.

Anyway, so I'm sufferin from culture shock, which is really surprising but it's ok. I came across a scripture in D&C 68:6 that said "Be of good cheer and have courage, for I the Lord am with you." So that is whats been keepin me going this week. Thats how great scripture study is. This is harder than I coudve ever imagined. please pray. I love you all so much. Thank you for everything. Mara, I'm prayin for you and your investigators! God be with you!

Have a great week everyone. Amping kamo

Elder Mahaffey
Cebu Temple
President and Sister Schmutz

Companion - Elder Fudge


National Geographic Scenes

Saturday, September 1, 2012


Tuesday evening of this week, we were thrilled to receive a call from our boy.  He was waiting at the SanFrancisco International Airport with 8 other missionaries.  Our conversation was so full of joy and excitement, and to be honest--a few tears. 

He sounded happy.  He sounded excited.  He sounded READY.  They were to fly through the night, arriving in Hong Kong the next morning and then in Cebu before noon on the 30th.  We should hear from him again on Wednesday.  His first meeting in the Philippines was reported to be a mission-wide conference with one of our Apostles, David A. Bednar-- WHAT A WELCOME!!

On Thursday afternoon, we received a big box of things Sumner sent home from the MTC.  Among the piles of letters from so many of you (thank you! thank you! thank you!) were these pictures taken during his last week at the training center in Provo, UT.  I wish I could post the video he sent of his district standing in a circle and singing in their new language,  "GOD BE WITH YOU 'TIL WE MEET AGAIN."  (Can't watch that one without a big box of tissue).

Thank you all for following and writing Sumner.  We feel your love and support, as he does.

Warm regards,  J

             PROVO UTAH TEMPLE