So much to tell you this week! (I’m trying to think of some not-so cliché ways to start off these emails. I feel like I wasn't too successful with that one). President was gone the entire week for Mission Presidents’ Seminar in Manila, so SUPPOSED to be, this was our week to conquer the world (teach a lot) since we would have nothing to do in the office but that didn't exactly happen. Apparently, when President is out of town, that’s when Satan likes to strike. SOOOOOOOO much happened. Every day was a new adventure… Every day.
Still, I have some good stories for you! A little more than a month ago, we were closing up at the office on a pouring rain night. All of a sudden, this lady shows up, knocking at the door. This was slightly creepy since it was 9pm and the city dies here around 8pm, not to mention the down pour. To slash the long story – she was crippled (from birth I think, hand a deformed right arm) and got kicked out of her Aunt’s house in the northern part of the Philippines. She planned on going to stay with her kid (long story) in the southern islands but had no money and thought that even though she had been inactive for years, she would try and come ask for help since she saw the church after the truck she was hitching a ride on dropped her off near it. We called the bishop and he came over and verified her story, making sure she wasn’t scamming us and took her to a hostel (cheap place to stay for a night) and gave her money to get to where she was going. And after that, we never heard anything about it… Bishop updated us on the situation last week and said that the lady contacted him from her kid’s place saying how grateful she was and that she’s now active in the church down there. She is so grateful that we were instruments in the Lord’s hands to help her. So what started as a some-what weird experience for us, turned out to be another spiritual witness that God really does love all his children.
Yet again, Vern came to church! Woohoo! And it was even better than last week! He walks in and says that while he was reading the Book of Mormon that morning, he has this distinct thought come to him that he needs to make sure this is the true church, and that when he decides to join, he has to join with all his heart and not go back. He always says it’s “going to be difficult to change religions”. Also, he always shares things about the Catholic beliefs with us to compare and so we can answer his questions. At church, he said that he doesn’t share those things to convert us, but to show us how hard it’s going to be for him to leave these things. …is it not so obvious that he will one day be baptized?! It’s such a miracle. And not only his progression in the church, but we are not at all surprised that his temporal situation is improving as well! Tomorrow he starts teaching English, he’ll be making 100 pesos a day ($2.50, can you believe, that’s a lot for him!). I love Vern so much. I feel so blessed to be here at this time. I feel so incompetent and undeserving, nonetheless, I’m so, so happy to be able to participate at a time like this (:
By the way, it's hot again. It feels like I sleep in a kiln every night. An electric fan only goes so far.
Elder Shane Brown
1. Had a new elder come in this week (transfers are still next week pa)
2. Went on exchanges with this elder this week. Great guy.