Saturday, October 15, 2011 UPDATE!

It's been a while since I've updated this, but I'll write a little from each letter that I've missed:

September 11:

Elder Salas and Elder Taylor, acting normal
Elder Salas and Elder Taylor, acting goofy

From this letter: The language is coming a lot better. I can understand a lot more that is said and say a lot more things. But I still have a long way to go. There's still a lot I don't understand as well. But I really like the language. It's an awesome language! I love and miss you guys! Thanks for all the letters and support!

September 18:

His first baptism! Her name is Anaceli and they've been working with her for a while. Here's what Elder Salas had to say about the baptism:  
"So we called her and planned her baptism!! Then we set things up with bishop. Then all day Saturday we went around to member's and investigator's houses and invited them to the baptism! We had a good turnout too! The second picture is everyone who was there. That's pretty much out whole ward. We have probably 10 other people that come that aren't in that pic. Her baptism was awesome. It was such a great feeling to know that were really doing out purpose. Bring her closer to Heavenly Father. It was awesome."

September 26:

Some highlights from this email from Elder Salas:

- Cezar, out investigator who needs to get married, has all the paperwork and the stake president got his marriage license! So were good to go! They want to have their wedding on Thursday but we're not sure if the stake pres can come then. But it looks like Elder Taylor and I will still be together to see his baptism! Which is pretty awesome!
- One thing that's kinda hard here is that the members think its better to wait till their kids are 9 to get baptized so they go through the missionary lessons. We have one family who has an 8 year old but wants to wait. We're dong our best to tell them that they shouldn't wait, it's just a weird thing they believe here. It doesn't make any sense.
- Yes, Anaceli is married, but shes been away from her husband for 10 years. The church actually has a rule here that you can still be baptized if you're married not divorced but separated from the guy. Cause divorce here is illegal. You can get an annulment but it's super expensive. It's around $3000. It's been really hard with Anaceli 'cause since she is technically married even though she's separated, she can't ever get married in the temple unless her husband dies or the law changes. Telling her that was the hardest thing I've had to do. 'Cause our goal for her is to get her to the temple, but then we find out she can't even get married there. She can get her endowment but that's it.

October 2:

Highlights from this week's email:

- There have been a couple of Bagyos (hurricanes) in Manila but they haven't effected us too bad. We're pretty far from Manila so we usually don't get hit too bad if they go through Manila. It got to be a signal 3 (signals go 1-5) Monday night here in Talisay. If it's a signal 3 it means you can't go out and work. But it was night so it didn't effect us in that sense. With no power though we couldn't have our fans on. And that was killer. The temperature isn't too bad if you don't have your sheet over you, but with no air flow the mosquitoes come by the 1000s! Elder Taylor and I got eaten alive Monday night. I would cover up so they couldn't bite me but would wake up 20 min later sweating like crazy.
- Wednesday I had my first experience of slipping in the mud! We were walking though a rice field and there was this huge puddle and I tried to jump it. I jumped and as soon as my foot hit the mud it slid out from under me! It wasn't super bad though. My pants were pretty muddy though. You literally wash things by hand here. Hardly anyone has an actual washing machine.

October 9:

Highlight from this week's email:

- One of our investigators came (to watch General Conference) and he didn't understand anything. It was Cezar who came. He had his baptismal interview after the Sunday morning session and passed! His wedding is Friday at 11 and his baptism is right after that! And he said he wants me to baptize him! So I'm pretty excited for that! His testimony is way, way strong! So from Talisay to Daet is about a 10 mile ride on a jeepnee, Cezar rode his bike all the way there for conference, plus he had a little side cart thing on his bike that he pulled his wife and kid in all the way there. They left their house 3 hours before conference started to get there on time! Just to get there then not understand anything. He literally told us he didn't understand any of it, but he wasn't mad or anything, he was just happy he got to have his interview. One of the really, really cool things I've realized about serving a mission is that the faith I see other people show is strengthening mine so, so much.

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