Along with just about every other missionary, I'm sure I've said this several times - I can't believe it's already Pday! And so here I am, writing to you once again from a strange (hot, humid) land, several thousand miles away. I'll never be able to fully (or properly) describe the Philippines or my life IN the Philippines, but here's another attempt at a some-what interesting letter:
Thursday night was my mother/grandmother's worst nightmare come true. We had an awesome morning/afternoon being interviewed for the last time by our mission president before the mission splits and he goes home (July 1st). We got home that night (long travel) and had to get to an appointment. We stopped by the apartment first. In our rush, we neglected to turn off the light as we left - Enter the nightmare. We got home an hour later... Hatch was grabbing the key from his bag and fearfully utters, "Oh no." I look through our glass door to see... THOUSANDS of dead bugs. Everywhere! Keep in mind, there were none of these when we left. Not a hint of them. Within an hour of us being gone, they had magically crawled through our glass windows, started a thriving civilization, then died - all of our floor, desks, beds, curtains, counters, etc. They were everywhere. The duration of the night was spent sweeping them... Yet another evidence that serving in a 3rd world country actually includes living there. Hmmmm....
And now a story with a significantly happier ending: Two weeks ago we were riding on top of a jeep going to the big city to Pday. I had the chance to talk to a man named Ding we said we could visit him. We did, it was amazing. We had planned to just share a small introduction lesson with him then go into the Restoration (Joseph Smith and Book of Mormon) the following visit. Something (the spirit - duh) told me to skip to the Book of Mormon. I pulled it out and Ding straight-away says, "Is that a Book of Mormon? Hold on!" He ran into his room then came out with the most beaten looking Book of Mormon I've ever seen. To be short, he found it years ago while searching the wreckage of a house long-since destroyed by a storm. He's read it every night since then, "solving his life problems." "Okay - this church is true, and miracles still exist," was the first thing that popped into my head. Is not this golden? How great!
Along with Ding, we have other amazing and truly progressing investigators. I imagine that seeing their spiritual journey is much like a joy-filled parent cheering on their child who is just learning to walk. Truly amazing. Truly the best.
I'm doing great! Hope you are too! Love, Elder Shane Scully Brown
1. THE BUG ATTACK! (this picture downplays the sheer amount..)
2-3. Service Project
4-8. Some views of rain and my rubbish umbrella
9-10. Standing up on my feet
11-12. Two pictures of the road
13. My new umbrella!