Wednesday, May 1, 2013

"AY salaaamat."

ok. ok. OK. first of all, I'm beaming at the emails and pictures yall sent me. Mabolo is of course doing awesome. I feel like the possibilities are endless. We talk with evvveryone and it's so cool to hear their life stories and we've gotten so many return appointments. God is real, and Christ lives! Even though the city is REALLY hot, and we spend some days just walking and sweating getting punted from every appointment, we enjoy it so much. I heard a quote: "God makes even the most mundane things exciting and fun." Amen.

We led the zone with "number of less-actives returning to church for the first time." One after one they walked into the chapel and I wanted to give them high fives we were so happy. I was just amazed at their leap of faith and commitment to keep their covenants. Surely the word of God has a more powerful effect than anything else. We could laugh and joke and be warm fuzzy friends, but that wouldn't do a thing for them. That aint what I'm here for. It's the pure, simple, true doctrine that touches their hearts and helps them change. Also, our investigator Vilma came to church and is set for May 25th as a baptism date.

We found many less-active members this week. Monico hasn't been to church for almost a year because of work but he really wants to go to church, and after talking with him, we found out his boss is a member in Utah and he could probably get his schedule changed. On top of that, he introduced us to his non-member girlfriend, Carmel, who is so prepared to recieve the gospel. She said, "The thing about the Mormons that I really like is that you follow your rules. You don't drink or smoke or wear inappropriate clothing. Other churches teach it but the members dont follow it. But you do. That tells me that you really believe what you teach." And in her prayer, she told God that she wants to become a member of "this true LDS church." Then, Monico introduced us to his cousin, Shen, who used to be skeptical of the church but after listening to a discussion is now very interested. Me and Elder Warner are so grateful. Our jaws are dropped half the time.

AH i love this work. haha i echo mara's words. Mara welcome home this week! I love you all, family, friends, and animals. Take care and take pictures.

aloha,
elder mahaffey


 

Concrete Jungle (April 24)

Dear people,

Mabolo is amazing. and I'm staying for a whole transfer! Haha you should have seen me when I got to the city. I was like a caveman that had never seen civilization. I suffered another culture shock coming from Lamac just thinking "whoa... everyone's so rich." We've eaten out like every night and the food is incredible. also, we met an indian man (I love indians) that has a dairy and sells fresh cows milk so we bought oreos and milk. YEH HAha I had no idea what I was missing. And it just got better when we went to church. It was so organized and everyone was speaking English to us and we had all our meetings. Then so many members want to help with our missionary work, I'm just not used to it.

Guess what. We have investigators. haaaaallelujah. We taught sister Vilma yesterday and I asked her if she knew if the Church was true and she teared up and said "yes. It's true. I've received a witness in my heart." And my stomach dropped hahaha, because thats the first time on my mission ive heard an investigator say that. She wants to be baptized and only has to get her marriage papers finished. And then we have 2 other investigators Junior and Gege. Brother and sister, so ready to receive the gospel.

On monday, one of the members from Lamac called me and said she was in the hospital and needed a blessing, so we ran over and walked into this sick ward, just a giant room with sick coughing people on metal beds, so humid and hot and sad. We went to a janitors closet, and gave her a Priesthood blessing that she would have a quick recovery and be able to return to her family and always remember the Lord and his Priesthood. I thought of the lyrics "we'll go to the poor like our Captain of old, visit the sick and weary" and felt to grateful to be a servant of Jesus Christ.

Mara, I love you so much. on your last two weeks. You have been a beacon to me. I love the differences in our missions, but the unity of our purpose. Bringing people unto Christ! Everyone can do that every day, search for those around you that need it and lift their feeble arms. Take them higher.

I love you all!
Love,
elder sumna

Ps theres a man in our neighborhood who has a Bengal tiger. and he walks it like a dog.

Better Angels (April 17)

Well I'm transferring. It was such a shock and came out of nowhere, but there are health problems and elder manansala is going to manila. i feel bad but he seems pretty excited about it. I'm transferring from the most rural area in the mission, to the most city part of the mission... I'm torn. I'm excited but very very sad to leave Lamac. It has become my home! Time is up and time to move on though.

You know I've been thinking A LOT lately. It's interesting to see how my smallests interests and thoughts have changed. I look back exactly one year from now and my concerns were like "Should I go to the beach or study today?" or "Ugh why is no one texting me?" hahaha but now my thoughts are like "what kind of punishment must be affixed to bring a remorse of conscience to these people?" hahaha deeeeep. I like that change and growth.

I feel happy for the members who are making progress and seeing blessings but i feel sad for those who give so easily into temptation. It reminds me of a quote by Abe Lincoln: "we must live in accord with the better angels of our nature." I love that! We can be assured that every right choice will make us happier. Never ever hesitate to resist temptation.

Time and time again i'm overwhelmed by the beauty of this country. On monday, we traveled to the city taking a winding, bumpy route through the mountains I'd never taken before. I felt like a tourist, stuffed in a tiny van, straaining my neck to look out the window to see the canyons and jungle and tiny villages in the middle of nowhere. I was smiling so big and probably looked crazy but i was just so grateful to be here.

Um general conference was amazing. My favorite talks were Elder Cook's about peace and Elder Cardens. and so much more. Refreshing for real.

So go on and live life and love and serve and let the Spirit guide you every moment of everyday. I testify this Church is true and the living Christ directs it. Live according to the better angel of your nature. All my love and aloha to everyone of you,

Elder Mahaffey


Take Time to be Holy (April 10)

ALohA

Man, things are good and everythin but the philippines is tough yall! the pride and gossiping just destroooys people. it totally drives away the spirit. there are so many members finding faults in others. sorry it's just hard. dont let one bit of pride slip in the door.

I learn constantly from other peoples lives. We need to really "take time to be holy." like a lotta time. let it sink in, you know? Our zone is really focusing on the leaders and making sure theyre strong. that's just what this mission's like. We're helping "re-convert" the members. We're re-teaching all the lessons and it's crazy to see how much people don't know... but that's what we're here for. I feel blessed to be serving under the leaders I have and blessed to know how strong the members are in our home ward.

well. that's it. we're gonna get this country up and runnin. I love how perfect the Church is. It is a perfect organization. DAPAT LANG KAY SIMBAHAN SYA SA GINOO MISMO DEBA. What a light it is in such dark and confused world (john 8:12). I rejoice in the successes of missionaries in other countries around the world, especially my sista mara, i love the miracles. i love our family and our Heavenly Father's plan of happiness for us. so excited to watch conference this weekend.

amping-amping yall. take care.

love and aloha,
elder sum


The Grass is Green (April 2)

You know I always hear people complaining about life and saying "the grass is always greener on the other side" problems, but this week it hit me-- maybe we just need to take better care of the grass on our own side! Pull some weeds, fertilize it, mow the lawn, you know? Make it better. Stop comparing and appreciate what you have. AMEN

This week was up and down as usual. haha Easter was...interesting. Here, the catholics have Semana Santa or Holy week and for 3 days, theres no work and ironically they get drunk and gamble and act out the crucifixion and have parades. honestly...I saw people crucifying themselves and whipping people to remember Jesus... it made me sick. Like mara said, I love that we focus on the Atonement and his resurrection more than His death.

Other than that, work was good. The members are catching on and reading their scriptures every day! We ask all the families if they've noticed a difference since they started everyday and they all say theres no more fighting, they dont get mad easily, the home is peaceful. I'm so grateful for the scriptures and for "the joy of human love-- brother, sister, parent, child." You know? life's good!

Funny experiences...This week the couples missionaries (Elder and Sister Dover--love them) worked with us and we were walking to our next appointment and a NAKED man comes running out of the jungle like singing. hahahah sister dover's reaction was so funny, she was so embarrassed "oh...ohh..thats a...he doesnt have clothes...oh my.." ahahah poor thing. only in the philippines.

also, we were teaching an old woman about jesus and his teachings and this is the conversation:

Me: Sister if someone did something mean to you, what would you do?
Nanay: I'd get 'em back! revenge!! throw a rock!
Me: Jesus taught us that it's not "tooth for a tooth." we must love our enemies and forgive everyone.
Nanay: That's true. I can't get revenge cuz I only got 3 teeth anyway!!

hahaha i laughed so hard. i love these people. they keep me young!! hahah anyway i love and miss you all. take care and remember always "salvation is a family affair." lets help each other get to Heaven!


Love,
elder majaffy