I have so much to say and so little time so I am just going to make you a list. There are so many things that happened this week and there is no way I can adequately explain it in an email but I'll do may best.
1. Sister Loo and I got a call from the APs last week that the four of us would be having a meeting with the leadership from two other missions and the Philippines area presidency in Manila. We freaked out! I was one of the most incredible experiences. We got there and were escorted into a conference room which we all sat around. There were 12 missionaries (4 from each mission) and the whole area presidency (all members of the first Quorum of the Seventy) . The incredible part were they were there that day to here from us in preparation for their mission president's seminar. They asked us questions which we discussed for 2 hours. They learned our names and got to know us and gave us advice and thanks for all of our work. It was very humbling to see them listen so intently to a bunch of 18-22 year-olds. Definitley a once in a lifetime opportunity to interact so personally with general authorities and one I will never forget.
2. We have been feeling the need to visit a certain less-active family for weeks and it has just not been working. Well this week we got a member with us (after lots of trying) and finally made it to their house...but they weren't there. Their sister an incredible active member named Connie was though. We had talked to her about teaching her non-member husband but she said he wasn't ready or willing. However, he really respects the member we were working with so he decided to join. It was literally the most powerful lesson I have been a part of my entire mission. He is the father of 3 daughters who are all active with their mom and they all just watched him with love and so much hope in their eyes. He said he wants to change and accepted a baptismal date for the first time ever. Connie said that later that night he asked his daughter to help him write down the steps to pray so he didn't forget. Connie said she feels hope again for the first time in a long time. We has now avoided us a few times but we helped Connie wash dishes with their hand water pump outside last night and she just kept asking him not to give-up on him because he has never been this ready. We won't!!
3. We taught the Pagunsan family again and they ALL came to church again. Butch (their father) said that he told all of his co-workers and friends that he is no longer available on Sundays because he will be at church...that is huge for him! He said that if he were going to rate the church 1-10 he would rate it an 11. They love it! His wife Sally said that she feels like Joseph Smith searching for the truth and feel as though they have found it. They have accepted a baptismal date in May!
The Lord truly is hastening this work and it is only beginning. Any success we are having has been through the members. You make all the difference. Pray for and look for opportunities to find people. So many are waiting!!
Thank you so much for all the birthday wishes. It is incredible to think about what has happened in the past year. Definitely my best one yet. I love you all and pray for you always.
Filipino Fun Facts:
The handsign for "OK" here means money. That took some getting used to.
Also you should all be jealous of the delicious smoothies Sister Loo and I make at night from the fresh fruits we by in the palenke (market) on the way home from work. Its the greatest.