This week..... we worked! As in, we really, really worked. Do you remember that thing called "down time"? - I don't. We really rocked it this week. And there were so many rewards.
So here's the interesting things of the week: Remember Mayon? The most perfectly formed volcano in the world, and the 2nd most active (I think, at least it's the most active in the Philippines)? We got home the other night and the office elders who live right next to us were on their balcony and shouted at us to come up ASAP. We get up there and scanned the area. It was no secret what they were looking at..... Lava! Literally, there was lava coming out of Mayon! What?! It was coming out of the the side though not the top of the cone. Elder Madsen and I actually went there on Pday last week to go to a touristy place half way up the volcano so we were glad we went when we did. Anyways, nothing too crazy happened, the world will be okay. We did here though (and it's I'm sure mostly rumors) that this is the year Mayon is supposed to be more active than usual. I'll just let you know if it ever blows (slash you'll watch in on international television). Right, so the other great thing of the week was Sunday. After church, the Nelsons (senior couple) invited us to eat dinner with them. We got to there house at the end of a long day of work and guess what was on the Menu... Mexican food! The best! It was just like Cafe Rio (but better). The whole deal. Kumpleto. We sure love the senior couples here. Couldn't say enough.
To return to what I started this with... we gave our all this week. All of it. We almost taught the most lessons for our whole mission despite all the planning and things we had to do (we have mission tour next week - General Authority comes and trains the mission)! Granted... most of those lessons were in other areas on exchanges so it doesn't technically count, but, we sure worked hard. On Tuesday, President announced that we had to go to Masbate (an island) the next morning at 1am. We got there and went on exhanges with some elders. Before we started, President talked to us and taught about faith. Really, he told us things we already know and could just nod our heads in agreement to, but with his conviction, he made us actually want to do it. That is, work in faith. So we go out for pretty much an entire day of tracting and I sure loved every minute (and rejection, and crazy person that opened the doors, and getting laughed at, and being called random things, etc.) of it. First of all, tracting isn't the most effective way to find people to teach, but if there isn't any help from the ward, any obedient, diligent missionary will still go out and make things happen. Right so I'm with this Elder and we went to a house that they talked to before and they weren't home but there was someone across the street just sitting down. Hah somehow we were both a little not-so willing to talk to them, but as I thought about faith somehow the words "If we have faith, we'll go talk to that person" came out of my mouth. 20 minutes later, new investigator, super interested. Then we walked down a street and there was a guy working on his motor. Since he was obviously busy, I was a little hesitant. This time, my companion was the fired up one and he said we had to talk to him. We did. Then he let us in. Then we talked to his wife. And met his kids. And taught them. And they made the decision to be baptized. And we were happy. As we walked out, the elder said to me that he had walked passed that house several times and felt he should stop, but it wasn't until now that he actually did. And what good came of it!
Right so that's my ramble for the week. Sister Guanzon gave us a bunch of pictures she's taken of the mission stuff over the last few months so I'll attach a few for you. Love you!
Elder Shane Brown
1-2. When we visited Mayon. ...Before it had lava coming out!
Really can't see it in the picture, but I promise the lava was real!
4. Construction. No safety ropes what so ever. Just a guy, his paint, and some bamboo.
5. Elder Madsen and I simultaneously became George of the Jungle as we swung across this bridge