Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Party Central

We’ve had several comments from home that we seem to be having too much fun over here. Well, you’re all correct! We not only love to spoil the Elders but lately we’ve been able to enjoy having the Senior Couples and some G.A.’s to spoil. What a fun and rewarding mission this is!

(St. Paddy's Day Celebration)

It was an exciting, busy, spiritually uplifting week for us. We also have the brightest sunburned shins in the Philippines. We were able to visit some less active members this week and encourage them to attend District Conference this weekend. It is so rewarding to go into the homes of these amazing people and share our testimony with them. We were thrilled to visit with them before the conference started today. Earlier in the week we kept busy with tutoring, visits and Mission Presidency meeting in Makati.  

Friday we went with the Senior Couples to Pagsanjan Falls near Laguna. It is out of our Mission area so Pres. Howard got permission for us to go. We got to ride in small canoes up the river with 2 boatmen per boat and couple.

It was beautiful and the rapids were fairly mild since we are in a draught here. We tipped the boatmen quite handsomely at the end of the trip because there was some serious work involved in getting us “up” the river!

The ride back down wasn’t too strenuous but keeping us balanced was a challenge. We wore sun block but still managed to get burned. The splashing and waves coming into the boat probably washed it away as quickly as we applied it. Elder Smith really enjoyed the raft trip under the falls. (I’ve already seen the back side of water so didn’t go with him.) 

Saturday was the training and adult sessions of our District Conference. Elder Sinamban (one of the area seventies) was here and delivered several outstanding messages. The Saturday meetings weren’t well attended but the session today was a full house.

We sang with the District Choir and they did very well. We sang prelude hymns for 15 or 20 minutes before the beginning and then did 4 hymns during the meeting. The choir members were so excited and pumped after the meeting that while the congregation was leaving we sang another number as postlude. Then, they (the choir) began visiting and wanted to know if they could have a choir party. One of the ring leaders asked if they could come to our apartment for the party. We said, “sure”, then.. they said great, we’ll be there tomorrow afternoon. It’s a holiday of some sort tomorrow so it is a good day for a party. We didn’t know how to say no to 25 smiling excited choir members so.. We’ll let you know later how things turn out. We’re really honored that they want to do things with us. Yes, we love it.

After the conference we hurried home and put the finishing touches on lunch. After some interviews at the chapel the guests arrived. Pres. and Sister Howard, Elder and Sister Tagg, Elder and Sister Hussey, Elder Sinamban, his driver, Pres. Vincencio, our Zone Leaders, and some friends from the Carissa Branch were here.

(The Husseys, Taggs and Elder Smith at lunch)

We’re wondering if we’ll be able to keep up a G.A. per month eating with us for much longer. Last month it was Elder Teh and then Elder Sinamban this month. We fixed meatball subs, coleslaw, pasta salad, chips and strawberry crumble for dessert. We prepared the salads last night and did the meatballs and desserts in the crockpots today. We had to be at meetings by 8:00 a.m. so were thankful there wasn’t a brown out. 

On another note: Sister Sonia passed away March 5th of cancer (See blog from Aug. 2009) She was a special baptism from Ternate.


Natalie said...

I knew your parties would be a hit. They are sure missed here at home. So glad you're doing so well, and I'm sure the mission is greatly blessed because of you two being there. Love you both!

crooksville said...

Your blog is always a highlight and maker-of-our-whole-week! Susie and I just finished reading the latest news as we're getting ready for Institute class this morning. The accompanying music sure helps get us ready!

There is something special about associating with missionaries, especially ones who have so much. . .well, what can you call it but FUN!!! We're sure that "fun" is a truly Celestial quality and requirement. After all, Christ does know every pain and sorrow, but He also knows every joy and righteous delight of our hearts. We're sure you two, and the whole Manila Mission, are the source of quite a few of His and our Heavenly Parents greatest joys and, yes, fun. Thank you so much! Can hardly wait to Skype video talk with you! Take Joy in the Journey!

crooksville said...

Oh, I forgot to mention to Elder Smith, I dearly LOVE going behind any waterfalls! Thanks again for sharing with us!

Willis said...

I am sad to hear that Nanay Sonia passed away. She was one of the most genuinely happy people I've ever known. And then I found out she had cancer. I interviewed her for her baptism. Please send my deepest condolences to her family.