Thursday, April 28, 2016

Week 7 & 8

So we  didn't really get a P-day in the Manila MTC, which was not cool, but P-day is here now!

So we actually took the train from Provo to get to the airport. Then we flew to LAX where we all got to call home, which was awesome! Then we flew to Hong Kong! It was so boring. All the lights were off, but for some reason, I could not sleep. Oh yeah, I remember, Sister Boobu kept singing this Indian song called Chicken-Kuk Doo Koo that she found on the in-flight entertainment! I listened to classical and Josh Groban and finally fell asleep for a couple of hours, but not for too long. Our flight got to Hong King an hour and a half late, late, so we had to RUN to the next gate. We made it as the last ones on the flight. I Manila, the MTC President met us, and we took a van to get to the MTC. It took like 2 hours, because Manila traffic is INSANE! So we literally took planes, trains, and automobiles to get to our missions, which is super awesome. 

We mostly just reviewed stuff in the MTC here. One day we went on splits to do proselyting with missionaries in the Quezon City North Mission. I was with Elder Foster from Layton, UT. It was SUPER hot. One day we went to get our fingerprints one for our visas, an they didn't know what to do with me. It was pretty funny. Elder Fifita was dying of laughter for the rest of the day. On Tuesday, we got to go to the temple, right across the street from the MTC. As we were walking out, we also saw the whole Philippines Area Presidency, which includes Elder Ardern -- a General Authority Seventy that spoke in the Provo MTC a few weeks ago. Apparently they go every Tuesday together. They were all so nice.

Then came Wednesdy! We had to get up at 4:30 so we could catch a van, n then a bus to Aliminos where the mission home is. Whe we got there we just did some training, were interviewed by President Mangum, and did some proselyting in nearby San Pablo with the assistants to the President.

On Thursday we got to meet our trainers. I'm assigned to the Santa Rosa 2nd ward in the Cabuyao Stake! My companion is Elder Bagtas! He is from Bataan in the Olongapo mission. He had his one- year mark yesterday. He's so humble and nice. He also became the district leader on Thursday! He's worried about it, but I think he will do well because he sincerely wants to help.

It's city, but it's not too poor like a bunch of areas in Manila that we saw. We actually live in a gate community in a 2 story house! It's just a kitchen and a bathroom downstairs, and then two rooms upstairs, but we have  gate porch and a balcony.

So it's ALWAYS hot here. There's so many people to talk to. We've picked up 6 new investigators in the 4 days that I've been here. Our subdivision is actually a "center of strength" b ecause there are a lot of people, and a lot of members that can come to investigator lessons with us. We take a tricycle, a jeep, and another trike in order to get to the other "center of strength."

The funniest experience this week was when an investigators  dad was drunk. Elder Bagtas asked him, in Taglog, to kill the TV before the prayer. The old man said in his drunken Tagalog, basically: "Okay, where's the sword?!"

I bore my testimony yesterday in church in Tagalog, and everyone said I did a great job, and were impressed. I can understand what's going on during lessons, and actually contribute which is cool, but I just need to learn more conversational Tagalog because it's hard for me to get to know people. The members here are so nice about my Tagalog, and never laugh, which is awesome.

 Makakabalik tayo sa piling ng Diyos dahil kay Jesucristo!

We made it! Apr 15th, 2016

We are in the Philippines safe and sound. Our flight to Hong Kong was over an hour late, so we had to run through the Hong Kong airport, but we (and all of our bags) made it.

I didn't get to sleep much on the plane, so I've had about 1.5 hours of sleep in the past 38 hours. 

The humidity and the traffic are awful but I was actually prepared for it, so it's been really fun. Elder Solis has never been east of Colorado before, and the humidity is killing him. It's been pretty hilarious. The traffic is crazy! They have lanes marked,but no one follows them and people just cut everyone off. It's very exciting and entertaining.

The food at this MTC is better than the food in Provo was. Tomorrow we will go on splits to go tracting with missionaries in some of the different Manila missions. That should be pretty exciting, because there are literally just people everywhere all the time.

Week 6 Apr 13th, 2016


So last Thursday night, we Skyped with another member who lives in the Philippines. He is actually a call-center employee, and speaks English for 8 hours every day. We spoke to him in Tagalog and he was super nice. His wife was also Skyping with some other missionaries that we know who are speaking Cebuano. 

On Friday we had In-Field Orientation, which was basically an all-day event where we talked a lot about how it will be in the field, and how to work with members. It was alright. The people running it told some pretty funny stories about their missions.

On Saturday we practiced teaching in class with each other, and our teacher told us to first do it in English, and then Tagalog. It was actually really weird to teach in English. I didn't like it. I'm much more comfortable teaching in Tagalog now than English, which is cool. Then we did something that I wish we could've done more often. Brother Spencer just sat down and told us a funny story from his mission when he got dehydrated and was really sore. He spoke really fast and added in a Filipino accent, and after he was done, we had to summarize as much of it as we could.

For district meeting on Sunday, President and Sister Howard told us how to survive in the Philippines. They showed us a bunch of pictures of all our missions and San Pablo looks beautiful. For the devotional we got to hear Richard Heaton, the administrative director of the MTC, speak about the Holy Ghost. After that we watched a movie about John Tanner, a pioneer of the early Church, and then Music and the Spoken Word. I also read all of Matthew on Sunday

On Monday, we taught each of our "investigators" for the last time. Our lesson with "Francisco" went pretty well. Our lesson with "Delony" just had such a strong spirit. Afterward, Sister Brock came up to us and said that our lesson was beautiful and we didn't just teach "Delony," but we actually helped the real Sister Brock come closer to Christ. She told Elder Solis and I that we are definitely ready for the field. That was so awesome to hear. We also had Chik-fil-a for dinner. It was amazing, as usual.

On Tuesday, we cleaned bathrooms for service again. We then got haircuts, and printed off talks for the plane. Brother Spencer helped us with a bunch of little language things for our last class, and we also watched the "Because of Him" video. That video is awesome for me every time. We sang a good arrangement of "I Feel My Savior's Love" for choir. The speaker for the devotional was W. Christopher Waddell of the presiding bishopric. He had us read Matthew 25 before the devotional so we would be ready for his talk. He related every single one of the parables (the ten virgins, the talents, and the sheep and the goats) to missionary work. It was pretty incredible. I was excited because I loved his talk from General Conference.

Right now we're doing laundry, and then we get to go to the Philippines today!

Nagpapasalamat ako para kay Jesucristo at sa pagbabayad-sala Niya para sa atin. Mamumuhay tayo na muli dahil sa Kanya.

Elder Justin Farish
Philippines San Pablo Mission

Week 5 Apr 7th, 2016

Last Thursday night we got to go to TRC (lessons with actual members.) Normally we met with volunteer members from Utah Valley that speak Tagalog, but last week and tonight it's over Skype with members who live in the Philippines. The member we taught last week lives in Manila, and is actually an institute/seminary teacher, and a work-from-home video-editor. Since he teaches institute, we were able to talk about a lot of verses. It was so much fun.

On Friday we got our travel plans. We will fly to LAX, then to Hong Kong, and then to Manila! When we fly to Hong Kong, we will literally lose all of April 14th because of the 15-hour time difference, and the fact that it's a 15-hour flight.

General Conference was awesome. I was able to get so much out of it for missionary work. It was a great experience to watch it as a missionary. My favorite talks were Elder Dale G. Renlund's, President Uchtdorf's talk from the Priesthood session, and Elder Holland's talk that closed out the conference. My favorite story of the whole weekend was from Elder Renlund's talk: 

A friend of ours in South Africa shared how she came to this realization. When Diane was a new convert, she attended a branch outside of Johannesburg. One Sunday, as she sat in the congregation, the layout of the chapel made it so that the deacon did not see her as the sacrament was passed. Diane was disappointed but said nothing. Another member noted the omission and mentioned it to the branch president after the meeting. As Sunday School began, Diane was invited to an empty classroom.A priesthood holder came in. He knelt down, blessed some bread, and handed her a piece. She ate it. He knelt down again and blessed some water and handed her a small cup. She drank it. Thereafter, Diane had two thoughts in rapid succession:First, “Oh, he [the priesthood holder] did this just for me.” And then, “Oh, He [the Savior] did this just for me.” Diane felt Heavenly Father’s love.Her realization that the Savior’s sacrifice was just for her helped her feel close to Him and fueled an overwhelming desire to keep that feeling in her heart, not just on Sunday but every day. She realized that although she sat in a congregation to partake of the sacrament, the covenants she made anew each Sunday were individually hers. The sacrament helped—and continues to help—Diane feel the power of godly love, recognize the Lord’s hand in her life, and draw closer to the Savior.

On Sunday night, the devotional was done by BYU Vocal Point. It was great. They would sing a song, and then a couple of them would each share a lesson that they learned on their missions. they sounded amazing, were really funny, and had a lot of great lessons about the Spirit.

On Monday, we taught both of our "investigators" and both lessons went really well. We've been so much more prepared, and just focused exactly on their needs. That has made such a huge difference, and the Spirit has been there so much more. We always get told that our lessons are sobrang maganda. 

On Tuesday we did service in our building by cleaning the bathrooms. while cleaning on one of the floors, I actually met Elder Caldwell, who is actually from Stafford! He said that he filled out his mission papers with President Kitchens! In class that day, we read in Alma 7 which people usually associate with the Atonement, but it is actually very much about the doctrine of Christ. 

The Tuesday Devotional was by Ian S. Ardern of the Seventy, who is actually the current Area President for the Philippines. He shared ten lessons that he learned on his mission in France. There was actually a bat flying around inside the building during the devotional. Elder Ardern actually turned it into an additional lesson about investigators getting distracted during lessons. He was really funny.

On Wednesday we read 3 Nephi 8-9 in class with Sister Brock and related it to ourselves. My favorite was the last verse of chapter 9 because we can't let the Atonement to have happened in vain: 

 22 Therefore, whoso repenteth and cometh unto me as a little child, him will receive, for of such is the kingdom of God. Behold, for such have laid down my life, and have takeit up again; therefore repent, and come unto me ye ends of the earth, and be saved.

Both of our lessons also went very well yesterday. Elder Solis and are having so much fun teaching and preparing for lessons.

So they're building a new building here, and apparently it is tradition for people to sign the last beam of a building before it is set. So we all got to sign it yesterday. That was pretty awesome as well.

The Kiribati missionaries also had a lot of fun teaching us silly words. They always tell us how to say stuff like "You're childish" "You stink" "Shut up" and "You have a big forehead." they are always so funny.

We're all so excited to go on Wednesday!

Maganda ang plano ng Diyos para sa atin na makakabalik sa langit upang mabuhay sa piling Niya!

Week 4 Mar 31st, 2016

So the new missionaries are all pretty great. The Kiribati missionaries are definitely experiencing some crazy culture shock but they are all just hilarious. They are always making jokes and just constantly laughing.

Brother Cobb and Sister Iler don't have a class this cycle, so they are just resource teachers for our class. They are each really awesome.

On Friday, Elder Solis and I taught each of our "investigators" and both went really well. We are really starting to love teaching, and our Tagalog is getting better every day. Friday night, Elder Collins was walking around in his Star Wars shirt, his Transformer pajama bottoms, a pea coat, and running shoes because he got called down to the front office around 9:45pm after we had all changed for bed. It was quite impressive.

On Saturday we actually got two new elders! Elder Edgely, from Kayesville, Utah, showed up around lunch time. He was here in November, but he tore his ACL playing volleyball, and had to have surgery. So he's back, and will leave with us. He's going to Urdaneta, where Elders Hicks and Knowles are. Around dinner, Elder Palacio showed up. He was driving here from Miami, but got stuck in a blizzard in Denver. He actually got set apart here, by Elder Zwick, of the Seventy, because his family knows him.

For Easter, I got asked to speak in sacrament meeting. Everyone said I did a really great job. then we had an Easter Devotional that was broadcast to all of the MTCs all over the world. We sang "Jesus, Once of Humble Birth" for it, and Maddy Burt said that she could see us on the camera in the Madrid MTC. The speaker was Elder M. Russell Ballard, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. He spoke 45 minutes about Jesus Christ. It was incredible. He told us a special, more detailed version of the story of his grandfather -- Elder Melvin J. Ballard, a former Apostle -- meeting the Savior. The whole meeting was just fantastic. His testimony of the Savior was just so powerful.

Sunday night, we also did Peep Wars with Peeps and little swords. There's a microwave in the basement of our residence hall, so we had a big crowd. I had yellow Peeps, and Elder Edgely's family sent him red Peeps, so we did red vs. yellow for awhile. Elder Lowry was absolutely loving it.

We watched the story of John Rowe Moyle, the Stonecutter for the Salt Lake Temple, on Sunday night as well. I've heard it before, but it still amazes me every time.  Basically, he walked 22 miles on Monday morning and Friday afternoon in order to work on the Temple. He did it for over 20 years, including when he lost his right leg from the knee down. He made his own peg leg and harness, and continued to make the journey from Alpine to Salt Lake.

On Tuesday, after service, and before gym time, it was actually snowing here. The Kiribati missionaries were so excited. They were completely entranced by it. It was so cool to see them see snow for the first time in their lives.

For the devotional, we sang "Praise to the Man" arr. Mack Wilberg of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. It's the same version that the MTC Choir sang in conference a few years ago. It sounds incredible. The speaker was Elder Terrance M. Vinson of the Seventy. He's from Australia, so he had an awesome accent. He talked about our faith in Christ leading to action. It was really good. He had a lot of really great stories about faith causing people to act in crazy situations.

On Tuesday, Elder Collins had to bne at the Travel Office at 3:30AM to go to Edmonton. He woke up at 3:35, because he's Elder Collins. So after he left our room, a security guard came to see what was going on, because he was late. So he opened the door, and said something, but I didn't understand him. I said "Paki-ulit" which means "please repeat," but obviously he didn't understand me and said "What?" I said it again, and then realized, so I said "Pasensya [Sorry] er, I mean, sorry, can you say that again?" I told my teachers and they were pretty happy. It's cool to know that Tagalog is entering my sub-conscious.

On Wednesday, we hosted again. I hosted three elders. One was from Toronto, going to Argentina, and he was really cool. He actually lives on the floor below us.One was from Prescott, AZ, going to Twin Falls, ID, and he was nice, but a little strange. The last one was from American Fork, UT and is going to Russia! He was really cool, too. As he was being dropped off, his brother asked me where I was going, so I told him, and then he told me that he when to Legazpi -- also in the Philippines -- so we spoke Tagalog for a little bit while the elder said goodbye to the rest of his family.

We also taught "Delony" again yesterday. Our lesson just went so well. We definitely made it easy for the Spirit to confirm to her that what we were saying was true. Elder Solis and I were so pumped. It was the best feeling in the world. We can't wait to teach her again tonight.

Week 3 Mar 24, 2016


So in class this week we read 1 Nephi 1-2. Its always amazing to me how much there is to learn from those first few chapters. Nephi was definitely supposed to be the first author of the Book of Mormon.

The gym was closed on Saturday was closed to prepare for the temple dedication, so we had to go to the weight room. I still hate lifting and working out.

We had a really good lesson with "Delony" on Saturday. She had a lot of questions, and we answered all of them. Then Brother West gave us a lesson on the gift of tongues. We watched a couple of videos. The message was asically that learning Tagalog is not our purpose. Our purpose is to bring people unto Christ. Tagalog is just one of the means to the end. We still have to focus on the main goal. The Kiribati missionaries actually have being doing a little better since then.

Alright, so the Provo City Center Temple dedication was amazing. We watched it from the gym. They had three sessions, and we got to be in the first one at 9:00. The new Temple President and Matron spoke, and then Lynn G. Robbins of the Seventy. Then Dallin H. Oaks spoke, and offered the dedicatory prayer. He actually prayed specifically for the missionaries at the MTC in his prayer. It was really special. Then we did the Hosana shout with our white handkerchiefs. After that we all sang the Spirit of God. It was absolutely amazing. The Spirit was just so strong.

Merrill J. Bateman, an emeritus Seventy spoke for the Sunday Devotional. His talk was fantastic. He talked about the blessings and the power of the temple. Each temple is one more battle won.

Sunday was just awesome because we also got to watch Meet the Mormons that night. 

On Monday we had Taco Bell for dinner! I thought Elder Knowles was going to cry. It was delicious.

On Tuesday, Brother Eggert was finally back for choir practice. It's so much better with him than his sub. We sang "Jesus, Once of humble Birth." Gerrit W. Gong of the Presidency of the Seventy was the speaker for the devotional. He was pretty funny.

Yesterday marked halfway for us, and the other missionaries (that were already here when we arrived) left yesterday, except for Elder Collins. He is going to Edmonton, Canada speaking Tagalog, and their transfers are a little off, so he is going to be companions with Elder Mwarie for a week until he leaves. He's actually going to connect through Seattle.

People always write on the whiteboard in the hallway, and I thought the little dog angel was pretty funny. Also, last week Elder Knowles made up a story about Elder Lowry (from Wyoming) and his horse Bucky that made Elder Lowry cry form laughter. It was pretty funny. So I wrote a summary of it on the whiteboard in the hallway. Our teachers were very confused.

I'm going to miss the missionaries that left yesterday, but we got some new ones yesterday, and some more new ones are supposed to come today. So far, two of them from Pasco and Kennewick, and then the rest are from Kiribati. I guess the Lord just needs a lot of the people of Kiribati in the Philippines. They all seem really nice so far. I'm very excited.

2nd Email

So we decided to have a testimony meeting before bed on Tuesday night with the missionaries that we were leaving. We decided to make a mattress fort for it. I used AP Euro knowledge to fortify it with flying buttresses made from ladders (obviously I haven't really changed.)

Elder Solis wishes that this could be his missionary attire. He did this after gym one time when we were getting ready for class.

Week 2 Mar 17th, 2016

We had pretty good week. We learned a lot more about verbs this week. It is just such a different language than any Latin language. Verbs come first, then the Actor of the verb, than the Object that verb is being done on, then who is Receiving the object/action, and then the Location comes last. We work on translating stuff for lessons a lot, and also speaking "Tag-lish" in order to get used to the format.

Apparently we get to watch the Provo City Center Temple dedication on Sunday morning. We are going to go to the gym to watch it on the big screens. That will be really exciting. 

On Monday, Brother Spencer had us read 1 Nephi 18 as a class. He had us replace "build/construct a ship" with "speak Tagalog." It seemed pretty helpful for the missionaries from Kiribati.

Elder Mwarie answered a more difficult question in class one day, so Sister Brock said to snap in order to applaud him. I just said "pasensya" (sorry/patience) and held up my hand. She was embarrassed, but the class and Brother Cutler thought it was hilarious.

On Tuesday we had TRC ( I don't know what it stands for, but we teach church members (who actually speak Tagalog) who come to the MTC, in order to prep for sharing a message at dinner or lunch with members in the field. Elder Mwarie apparently misunderstood what was going on, and started asking her if she would get baptized, and so I had to clarify. He was a tad embarrassed, but it was all good. The members were great, and we got more experience teaching in the language.

We also had choir on Tuesday,, and the main choir director was busy so we had some other guy. It was awful . He kept adding in fermatas every fourth or fifth measure, and ritardandos and accelerandos before and after that, and weren't consistent. It was very frustrating. The song is actually really nice, but it had no flow when we sang it. It's called "This is the Christ." The lyrics were actually written by James E. Faust from the point of view of the Nephites in 3 Nephi.

I also saw Sean Burke! He served in our ward back home. He's now going to BYU and working with visual media and production at the MTC for devotionals and such. It was nice to see someone I know from home.

The devotional was Elder Jorge Zeballos of the Seventy and his wife. She said that we need happy missionaries. Nobody wants to let sad, grumpy, or tired, strangers into the home. He talked about making sure we tell whole truths. He said, "If I say 'we are the MTC,' it is true. If I say that 'it is snowing,' that is not true. If I say, 'We are at the MTC, and it is snowing,' the whole statement is false. We can't do that. That's what Satan does." He also said that our purpose is to "Invite others to COME to Christ," and not to "GO to Christ. "Come" implies that we are already there. We have to be there in order to fulfill our purpose.

Tuesday was also Elder Collins's 20th birthday. We gave him a hard time all day. Lots of love in the zone. Apparently they did the same thing to Elder Decosta last month on his bday. Collins's parents sent him Hostess cakes, which we all got to share. It was a good day.

The Kiribati missionaries had to take another English test yesterday, so we had to leave study time early. From there we went straight to the main building so that we could host new missionaries. There weren't very many this week, so I only got to host one missionary, but he is from Turkey! He had an awesome accent, and is going to Berlin for his mission.

We got two new "investigators" yesterday as well. They are Deloni (Sister Brock) and Francisco (Brother Spencer.) We taught "Deloni" in the afternoon, and she didn't seem very interested. We are teaching her again tomorrow. We taught "Francisco" after dinner, and he seemed much more attentive. We teach him again on Saturday.

Elder Lowry (hilarious guy from Evanston, WY) wrote "aplaya manok" on the board in the hallway, and got one of our teachers to help him convince Elder Collins that it meant seagull. It literally means "beach chicken" and is not another name for "seagull" in Tagalog. Elder Collins has been obsessed with telling people now.

The view from the temple is amazing. I forgot to take many pictures. Not much changes here, so I don't think about it.I'll try to remember more this week.

Funniest Tagalog messup this week: Elder Solis was practicing teaching with me. He was trying to say "Nagmamahal po ang Diyos sa atin" (God loves us) but he accidently said "Nagmahal po ang Diyos sa atin," (God loved us.) I pretended to be upset and said, "Bakit hindi nagmamahal po Siya sa atin ngayon?!" (Why doesn't He love us now?!)

Apparently, before we got here, some elder was trying to say "Pinatay po ng mga tao si Jesucristo" which means that "the people killed Jesus," but said "Pinatay ni Jesucrsto ang mga tao" which means "Jesus Christ killed the people." Our teachers said we can avoid this problem if we study...

Naniniwala po ako na puwede magbalik tayo sa Diyos sa pamamigitan ng pagbabayad-sala ni Jesucristo!

Hey, can you thank the Youngs for me? That was very nice of them. My whole zone absolutely loves them now.

Also, this is Elder Knowles. He's in my zone here in the MTC, and he has this blanket. He said that he was kind of cold one day, and this huge missionary from the Marshall Islands saw him and said in this huge, deep voice: "Hey, Knowles! You want my blanket?" He is a scrawny white kid, so he said "Okay?" and the Marshallese missionary threw him this blanket, and told him to keep it. It is absolutely fantastic.

I love you all!

Week 1, Mar 10th, 2016

Mar 10th, 2016

                                     (Ignore the dates,  he never changed the date stamp on the camera)
So when I got here on Wednesday, we got straight into learning Tagalog. We learned "How are you?" "Who is that?" "Where are you serving you're mission?" etc. within the first hour and we were on our way. Now I can pray, share a scripture, bear my testimony, and recite the baptismal invitation all in complete Tagalog.

My companion is Elder Mwarie from Kiribati. (Pronounced MAH-dee-ay and KEER-dee-bus.) On Friday, we had our first teaching appointment. It went okay. Elder Mwarie doesn't speak English as his first language, so he is much more focused on learning Tagalog than on any kind of planning. It has been frustrating because we have not been prepared for any of our four teaching appointments -- because he doesn't want to do companion study. Multiple teachers have told him about the importance of it, but we still have never had companion study for more than 10-15 minutes. He's a really nice guy, and loves to play volleyball.

I have a second companion now, too: Elder Solis, from West Jordan. He was already one of my roommates, but then his companion, Elder Williamson, had to go home because he came to the MTC with a torn ACL. He was really mad when he left yesterday. He's having surgery tomorrow. 

Elder Solis is actually Filipino. He has never been, but his parents were both born and raised there. His dad was actually born in San Pablo. He said their whole family was bawling when he read his call. He understands a lot of Tagalog, but he doesn't know much of the grammar.

Our teachers speak as much Tagalog as possible, and usually just use adjectives and nouns in English. One of our teachers, Brother Spencer, had to answer his phone right after class yesterday, and it was REALLY WEIRD to hear him speak English. I honestly don't even know what the phone call was about because I hadn't really thought that he knew English.

Most of the guys in our zone play basketball for the first half of gym time, and then volleyball with the whole zone for the last half. The guys in my zone are really cool, and we have a good time. I'm happy that I have such dedicated elders to serve with.

On Sunday we we get to walk around the temple as a zone. It was a very relaxing day after not getting P-day last Thursday, and working hard and long the first 4 days.

The food here is not fantastic. There was some pretty good jambalaya the other day, and then some good mashed potatoes on Fast Sunday. Other than that, it has been just alright.

On Tuesday, Elder Pino of the Seventy came to speak to us for the Tuesday Devotional. He said that "all over the world, I have seen General Authorities use interpreters to speak to missionaries. Now it's your turn." He is from Venezuela and spoke in Spanish with an interpreter. His talk was really funny. He spoke about our call, how much we are set apart from the world, and the reasons. He said our call is a personal epistle.

We finally got to go in the temple today! My companion had to be interviewed because his bishop wrote down his step-dad's last name on his recommend, instead of his actual last name. The Provo Temple actually looks a lot like the Seattle Temple on the inside. It felt so good to go do a session with my new brothers. We also got to eat breakfast at the temple, instead of the MTC! The omelettes are really good, and they had: biscuits and gravy. Elder Knowles said that the temple breakfast changed his life.

I thought we would be mostly studying the language every day, but our teachers put a lot of emphasis on learning the lessons in our native language, and then the Tagalog will come later through the kaloob ng mga wika (the gift of tongues/languages) as long as we spend the appropriate time in personal, companion, and language study each morning. We teach every day except Sunday and Tuesday. My teachers say I'm picking up the language pretty quickly.

I'm learning a lot, and I had a lot of great insights at the temple today, based on my personal study this week. I love being able to read in the scriptures and Preach My Gospel for so long each day.

I can't believe I actually took as many pictures as I did. I'll try to take more, but I always forget.

Alam ko po na buhay po ang Manunubos ko!
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