PHILIPPINES TACLOBAN MISSION:
Sister Madison May Healey
Philippines Tacloban Mission
511 Maharlika Highway
Tacloban City, LEYTE 6500
Sunday, December 27, 2015
Happy New Year!
Kamusta ang inyong Pasko!?! Haha it was a hot Christmas here! Like our tiny Christmas tree? haha On Christmas we went out and sang hymns and a message about Jesus Christ with our Less Actives. We sang "Where can I Turn for Peace?" (One of my favorite hymns) and we shared a scripture found in 2 Nephi 19:6 which says something about the birth of Christ and we emphasized about Him being the Prince of Peace. I know that no matter what we go through we can find peace in our Savior Jesus Christ. And the picture on the beach was on Dec 25th. Featuring Sister Pongyan. A merry Christmas indeed. :) Haha There were a LOT of drunk people everywhere. We had a few drunk tatays try and talk about religion with us, but they were so wasted, one guy said his favorite scripture was John and he quoted, "Forgive! So love the world! . . . " haha it was so funny.
The Encina family committed to get married!! They have lived together for 19 years but still aren't married. Tatay had a lot of concerns about money and marriage, but yesterday we went and visited them with our Branch President and a few members and taught about the Law of Chastity, Marriage, and temples. The spirit was so strong and tatay almost cried. They have come so far and I love them so much. I know one day they will be sealed in the temple.
This morning we woke up really early and went and played basketball with the Encina kids in Caray-Caray, close to their home. And some of their neighborhood friends joined in. It was fun and Johnson is really good! It's becoming a P-Day tradition now. :)
I feel like so much happened this week, but no time for details! We had our Christmas Conference in Ormoc which was really fun! And I got mail! That was exciting! And I got to skype home which was really nice. And funny to see my family's reactions when they heard my Cebuano.. haha reminds me of my first day in here in the Philippines. I love this work and I can't believe it is almost 2016!! Make great new years resolutions and actually TRY to keep them this year!! Cge?! haha Until next year! ;)
Package sent with Maddie to open on Christmas Eve.
A Healey Family tradition
New Christmas pajamas to wear to bed on Christmas eve
for Sister Healey and her companion
A sunny Christmas day
Basketball on P-day!
Sunday, December 20, 2015
Look for the happiness in life, because it is there, and sometimes all it takes to find it is a change of perspective.
I'm a mother!!! haha My anak is Sister Pongyan (21) from Cavite which is in Lozone so she is Tagalog gayud. But she was not called to serve in Tacloban Mission. Her real mission is Colorado, Colorado Springs Mission,but she is waiting on her visa so she can go to the states. So for now, she is here in Tacloban Mission! PTM! haha She doesn't even know the basics of Cebuano because she was in the English District in the MTC. BUT she is learning! haha So she will (hopefully) be here and finish training in our mission, then siguro after training she will get her visa and head out to the states! So any of you that live over there, and see her, ask about me! Haha It's so funny. She calls me "Nanay" or "Nay" I don't think she has called me Sister Healey once, but she is really sweet and funny. We get along well. :)
I can't believe it is almost Christmas!! AHH I'm so excited!! We have a Christmas Conference in Ormoc this week where we will get all of the mail that the mission office has been Keeping from us all month! So Merry Christmas! As far as actual Christmas, we still go out and work! But what better way of spending Christmas than sharing about Jesus Christ. One thing that is different here is the caroling. Back home we go caroling to spread Christmas Cheer and visit people with cookies or something, but here Caroling is people (normally kids) going door to door banging together rocks, pans, sticks, and begging for money. Like they don't just sing for fun. So that crossed that proselyting idea of the list...
It's funny how right now it is the "Brrr" months here in the Philippines, but it is still SO hot. haha the only white thing about Christmas this year is going to be me. Today is the branch Christmas Party and my zone is singing for the Christmas Conference. Our apartment doesn't have any decorations in it, and I have no clue what we will eat for Christmas, siguro the usual, but I am still so happy. Those things are nice, but not essential. I am just so grateful for Jesus Christ and His love. He is the gift. He is our Savior.
This Christmas, spend time with your family. Love them. Even if you are angry at them right now, love them. Hug them. Do little acts of kindness that shows them your love. and most of all, remember the true meaning of Christmas.
I love you all. Ang akong paglaum para sa inyo, pikakadabest inyong Pasko!
Amping Kanunay. Make a snowman for me. Lick an ice sickle. Send me a picture of you in the rain and warm clothes. But most of all, look for the happiness in life. Because it is there, and sometimes all it takes to find it is a change of perspective. :)
Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Kamusta Ang Tanan!
Today is Transfer day! I am in Tacloban and will be here untilbecause I am training!! So I am Staying in Naval, Biliran for the next two cycles as I train my anak! Sister Newton is heading home this week to America as her mission comes to a close. She has served long and hard. She will be missed. Rest in Peace Sister Newton. But! I'm excited to be training! haha Right after my own training... but I will do my best! And I will be leading the area! Shempre kay I'm the trainer. It will be an adventure.
Yesturday I worked in Dagami, Leyte which is Waray. haha It was fun to transfer and I actually really liked it! Waray is a much slower spoken language compared to Cebuano which is fast paced, and Dagami is Sister Powell's area! So for these few days I have been reunited with my companions from the MTC! Until T, Sister Allen will be my companion because she is training too! haha and neither of us really know Waray ... and we are in Tacloban, which is Waray. So that will be fun!
As a few of you probably know there was a typhoon that hit here in Tacloban mission these past 2 days, but no worries, we are all safe. :) It hasn't been too bad where I have been. Especially as I traveled I missed the worst of it.
This last week we had a black out in Biliran, not weather related. The whole island's power was out. If only one area goes out it is called a "Brown out" and those are pretty common, but to have the whole island out was rare. I still don't know what happened, but it eventually came back on.
We also had Mission Tour! The Area 70, President Ardern, came and spoke and gave a training this past week. It was really good and motivating to get out there and work even harder.
We also had an FHE this week with our investigators, the Encina Family! It was so fun. I love them so much. Tatay is still stubborn as ever but he said he is going to stop smoking cold turkey for New Years!! I love them so much! He also refused a picture with his family, so we had to sneak a picture. haha Too bad you can't see his face.
This last Sunday, Sister Newton's last, so many Less Active Members came to church! It was the best feeling ever when we saw them. Families and members that we have been visiting and visiting and just haven't done anything, BUT they came to church. And they looked so happy! It really makes such a difference in our lives! There is a reason that going to church is a commandment. Because in the end, all of the commandments of God are for our happiness, right?
I love this work and helping others remember God and His love for them. One thing that I have noticed as I have studied the scriptures is they say a lot, "...to bring them into remembrance..." because our lives are so busy, and we get caught up in ourselves and our own problems and lives that we forget God. We forget our Savior Jesus Christ. It is through church, reading the scriptures, and prayer that we remember Him. If we we don't do those things, God will make us remember Him by giving us trials and tribulation to knock some sense back into us.
So remember God. Remember and be grateful for all of the blessings you have in your life, before He makes you remember. Because really, all He wants is our eternal joy and happiness.
Sunday, December 6, 2015
Kamusta ang tanan!
Time is flying! And it doesn't even feel like Christmas! haha I think it might actually be getting hotter... but I'm still excited and love this time of year we have to remember and focus on our Savior Jesus Christ. If you haven't seen it yet, go look up christmas.mormon.org! And get involved! Lets all do our best to remember the true meaning of Christmas. :)
I don't even know what happened this week... haha But this week is my last with Sister Newton! Then she goes home! I'm killing her off. Nare transfers! So I'm not sure if I will stay here in Naval, Biliran or not. I will find out what my fate will be!
I'm sorry I don't have a lot of time! I'm sure I will have a lot to write about next week, so until next then, take care!
Sunday, November 29, 2015
I'm doing well! Thanksgiving was just like any other day here, the only difference is I made mashed potatoes for dinner! haha And Sister Newton demanded that we wear matching outfits. But we spent dinner going back and forth listing off the things we are thankful for. Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. :)
Ok... so much happened this week! For instance, we were OYM-ing (open your mouth/testify) this tindahan (a little store where they sell goodies, we don't have them in america) owner when a member of Iglesia ni Cristo showed up... so Iglesia ni Cristo, is a religion found only here in the Philippines. A member of the 70 wanted to be prophet but because the church doesn't work like that he got mad and left and decided to go build a church in the Philippines. Well they are alike in some ways... but have a lot of differences! One of the biggest differences is that they hate Mormons! So this InC came and started bashing our religion in front of this man we were oym-ing. Everything we would testify about he would interrupt and say No, bash bash bash, and yell false doctrine that he found about our church on the internet (so it must be true if it was on the internet..). It was rough...but the spirit just testified even stronger to me how true our church is! People can say what ever they want, but NO ONE can take away from your belief except for you. This man is bashing us and the church, and we are just listening, telling him that we don't want to debate, but he is not listening. Our tindahan oym is just listening, so intrigued by our conversation, we just turned to him and testified of truths. The spirit was so strong!! And we got a return appointment. :)
Don't be afraid of rejection. Stand up for what you believe in. Share the Gospel.
The Encina family is still progressing, and doing way good! Tatay is still his stubborn self, but he's slowly getting there :) We went back to them after teaching the word of wisdom, and they were all drinking Energin instead of coffee!!!!! Even tatay!!!! We were SO happy! Slowly but surely they'll come. Nanay is so ready for baptism and she wants to be sealed in the Cebu temple, just need to wait on tatay... but Nanay has a testimony :) I love this family so much!
So it turns out that our recent convert Kim (16) has a crush on my kabalay (roommate) Sister Estrera (20). So that's funny.
My Cebuano is slowly getting better. My STL (Sister Training Leader) told me I'm for sure training next cycle... haha I guess we will have to wait and find out!
Until next week! Love you all!
Our Thanksgiving feast
Sunday, November 22, 2015
And Happy Thanksgiving! haha they don't celebrate that here, but we will still try to do something in our apartment! So hopefully pictures next week!
For the spirit of Thanksgiving, I just want to say some of the things I'm thankful for.
1 My family and their support and love for me
2 The Gospel of Jesus Christ
3 The opportunity that I have to share the Gospel and serve a mission
4 My testimony, and all the experiences that helped me gain it
5 My trials
6 There are so many blessings in my life that if I were to put them all there wouldn't be any room left...
7 THE PHILIPPINES!
So this week has been AWESOME! I don't even know what has happened... but the Encina family came to church!!! Well, the mom and the daughter lang, but that is still really exciting!!! They are slowly progressing and I have a lot of hope for them. As of right now their Baptismal date is ! Sadly this week we had to drop a few investigators because they are not keeping their commitments. It breaks my heart, when people turn away from the Gospel. We all have our agency, the gift of choice, and we can't force anyone to do anything. We all have to find out for ourselves if it is true or not. They get that they have to act, but they just don't. It's just like, "THIS IS YOUR SALVATION! How hard is it to pray and ask if it's true?!" haha I think people are just afraid that if they know it is true they will have to change and they don't want to change. It's rough, but we just have to keep trying! Paglahutay hangtud sa katapusan! (Endure to the End). I know that there are people that God has been preparing to receive the Gospel. It's just our (Kita Tanan) job to find them! Members and missionaries!
I have such a strong testimony of Jesus Christ and His atonement. One of my favorite pictures of Him, is Him standing outside of a door, and there is no handle, but he is knocking. That door represents our lives. He is always there, waiting for us to let Him in, we just have to be the one to open the door. EtherThrough Christ we can overcome anything.
This week we went hiking up in the Bukid to try an find an investigators house. Sadly we never found them... but we got some cool pictures! haha and found a baby goat! But you could see the ocean, from where we were, so beautiful. Have I mentioned that I love the Philippines? Oh... I have? Oh well. You'll probably hear it for the next year and a half so get used to it. ;)
Also, here in the Philippines, bread is SO cheap. I love it. And I have to have rice with every meal now. Like it is a must. What is happening to me? haha
I'm doing great. So don't worry! Love you all! I know that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ do too! Go read your scriptures!
Until Next Week! Amping!
We found a baby goat!
It's so beautiful here!
In the Jungle!
Sunday, November 15, 2015
This week has been crazy. I'm pretty sure I say that every week, but it's because it's true! Haha There is never a boring moment. I'm over my cold now, so that's good! We have traveled a lot this past week because we had a specialized training in Ormoc, Leyte, then district conference this weekend for all of Biliran. It's like the Stake Conference equivalent and it's always fun traveling to Biliran, Biliran in the back of our Branch President's truck.
Last week I told you about the Encina family diba? I love them! We had 2 lessons with them this week.They are not married... so that is our first challenge. A lot of people here in the Philippines are not married because it is expensive and divorce is pretty much impossible, like it doesn't exist, so they just don't get married to begin with. It's the norm. The 2nd challenge is tatay. He has a lot of word of wisdom problems... but nothing we can't handle. Tatay knows he can't be baptized until after he stops smoking and drinking. We had just committed his family to be baptized and they all accepted, except for him. We tried to help him understand that he could prepare to be ready for baptism on a specific day, that he didn't need to be ready right now but he just wouldn't accept it. So we moved on. His family kept joking how they would be saved in the next life and he would be left behind begging to be baptized. It was so funny! Tatay is the one who starts our lessons, does all the following up, and ends them (although we make sure we do close it before he picks someone to pray) We were closing the lesson, tatay was getting ready to call on someone to pray and he got in the prayer position and I asked him to pray. And he did! Which was strange, because normally he fights it says he's not ready. But he prayed! He started out sarcastically: (yes this was in English)
"Lord, Forgive me Lord. Because I do the smoking and the drinking."
And we just thought... oh no... but then he paused and started again in Cebuano, and it was SO sincere. He even started crying and the spirit was SO strong. I almost starting crying too. haha He just asked for help and guidance. After he was done we asked him how he was feeling and then asked him if he would be baptized, and he said YES!!!!! I don't think I've ever been happier in my life! And I just wanted to hug him!!! But that's not allowed...haha I am SO happy for this family! Their daughter, Janel, knows that the church is true. She has a testimony. Now she is waiting for her family to catch up. I love them so much.
This week has been great. It's crazy how the time flies. Before I know it, it will be P-day again and I will be struggling to remember what even happened in the past week to tell all of you. haha
Until then, Amping. :)
At Specialized training with Sister Abrigo,
a member from our branch who is doing a short-term mission
Sunday, November 8, 2015
Kamusta Kamo!? Kinning semana, nakadawat mi og usa ka bago nga companionship! Naa ko'y kabalay na! Sister Estrera ug Sister Maico! Pinoy sila! Gihapon, Taga Cebu Si Sister Estrera. So kahibalo siya Cebuano. Swerte siya. haha Pero sobrang buotan siya, so Ok ra. :)
Basta! It's funny because Sister Maico is my sister! She was trained by Sister Newton and now is training! SO we are one big family! Haha We split the area in half so now Sister Newton and I have South Naval where our recent convert Kim lives, and the other Sisters have North Naval.
Right now we have this one investigator, Mendy. She is so awesome! She's 22 and single and works at the hospital. Her brother's live-in is a member, who is sometimes active, and her fellowshipper. Her biggest concern is she's worried her dad will be mad if she gets baptized or changes religion. So she has been praying for her answer but hasn't been able to receive it because of her fear of her father. We just had a really good lesson with her about obedience and about fasting, and she just has come a lot closer to Heavenly Father! We hope to just be able to continue to help her on her journey to find the truth.
We also have a family, the Encina family. I LOVE this family! We taught them about 2 weeks ago, but haven't been able to go back to them. They are former investigators and went to church about 10 years ago for like 3 or 4 months. Anyways, the first time we went the tatay (father) was outside and we had to ask him to join like 4 times, but he finally did! We had a really good lesson with them but he wouldn't pray at the end... Oh, this tatay is the funniest person I have ever met! Basta, we hadn't been able to teach them for 2 weeks because they were busy or the dad wasn't there, but the other day Sister Newton saw him. We couldn't remember where we knew him from, but he wave and we waved back. Then we saw him again the next day and I realized who he was! We were going to go over to talk to him, but he walked over to us before we could and he talked to us. We asked when we could come back and he said later! So we set an appointment. I just really love that family! They're so ready! They just need a little work! Tatay is fighting the spirit that he feels and he is trying to act like it isn't affecting him and he isn't ever going to change, but he's close. I wish I could just show you everything he does and you could see how funny he is. His daughter Janel has been reading the Book of Mormon! She's on chapter 12. In the last lesson we were out of extra Cebuano Books of Mormon so I let her borrow my English one. She liked it, so I wrote my testimony quick in the back of it and gave it to her. She was really happy and even prayed to close the last lesson! I'm so excited for this family! :)
This week has been good, but kind of rough because I've been sick. But don't worry! It's pretty normal for missionaries and it's just a cold. I've been taking medicine and I'm doing better now. :)
Something funny happened this week and pretty much every day now -- so Sister Newton and I stand out a lot because we are 2 Americans... and we get a lot of attention. We were walking and this petticab driver passed us and winked at me. We didn't think about it again, but a couple of days later the same petticab driver passed us and winked at me again and it was the same guy! So Sister Newton looked and the driver was still winking. He was turned around in his seat winking at us. His face was the funniest thing I have ever seen! Every time we see him he still winks at us and we see him almost every day. It’s so funny and weird.
Basta, this week has been good! My tan lines are getting darker, my hair blonder, and muscles (eyebrows) stronger. haha
Filipina na ako. haha Nahigugma ko sa Pilipinas ug Nasayud ko nga sobrang importante ang missionary work. So OYM. Open your mouth and testify. :)
Until next week! Amping!
Sister Estrera, Sister Maico, Sister Newton, Sister Healey
Me trying to catch a crab using my umbrella flashlight.
Sister Newton thought it was funny so she took a picture
Tuesday, November 3, 2015
Petting a lion, new Sisters coming to the area to help, and becoming a pro at saying yes with her eyebrows :)
Kamusta Ang Tanan!
This week has been crazy! We had transfers and cleaning day! Because I am being trained, I stayed here in Naval and Sister Newton is still my companion/trainer (Nanay). So I have 6 more weeks with her until she heads home!
Last Monday we had a zone activity and went to the zoo! And it wasn't anything like America, shempre. It was like a small parking lot, with a bunch of animals in cages. And I got to pet a lion!!! A LION. hahah I love the Philippines. There were big snakes, some turtles, tigers, and a monkey tied to a pole. It was so cool.
It was weird being here for Halloween! They don't celebrate Halloween the same way we do! They sell decorations in the stores, but kids don't go trick or treating. Halloween was just like any other day, except Sister Newton and I bought candy to eat at the end of the day. haha What is big is the day after Halloween. All Souls Day. It's a holiday here where people (mostly Catholics) go to the Cemetery and hangout/party in tribute for the dead.
We've been preparing and cleaning because 2 more sister missionaries are coming to Naval! So it won't just be us! We are splitting the area so Sister Newton and I will have South Naval, the area that Kim lives in. And the other Sisters will have North.
The work is going great! We don't have any progressing investigators right now, but a lot of new ones! We are working hard and have a lot of hope for the families we are teaching right now! I can't believe I have already been on my mission for 4 months! Times flies!!! I'm doing awesome and I know that this is God's work. I love it here so much. It is definitely hard, and we have trials for sure, but I have learned so much.
I am a pro at saying yes with my eyebrows now. And I don't flinch at cockroaches and spiders. Basically I can take on the world.
Until next time, Amping!
I got to pet a lion!
Sister Newton, Sister Healey and a giant snake!
Celebrating a member's birthday
Sunday, October 25, 2015
This week our investigator Kim got Baptized! It was such an amazing feeling! Especially as he was confirmed on Sunday and received the gift of the Holy Ghost. The spirit was so strong. We are so happy for him! And because we only have a meeting house here (no font), he was baptized in the ocean! His family was so happy. It is crazy the difference he's made even in one day! He actually wore a white polo shirt and neck tie which was cool! (I didn't even know he had one...) He participated in MCM with us, he went and participated in the choir, he's going to activities, and I think he feels like he's really part of the branch. It's so great to see the ward fellowship him like that and to see him get so involved :) I know that baptism is such an important and essential step in our eternal salvation. It makes me so happy to see Kim showing his faith and acting, by being baptized. Faith without works is dead, right? :)
We've been super busy trying to teach everyone here in Naval, but it's so big! haha The other day we actually taught a lesson in English because the Sister preferred it over Cebuano. She even wanted an English Book of Mormon. It was so strange teaching in English! I could say so much! haha basta, the spirit was so strong. We got to eat fresh coconut this week, help harvest peanuts, and Sister Newton finally got to hold a baby goat!
We also started a Preach My Gospel class for the branch on Saturdays and it was so fun. We teach lessons and teach them how to teach as well. There are a lot of prospective missionaries here in Naval Branch, and it is so fun to see their excitement about the gospel. They are nervous and scared of rejection, but aren't we all? Even as missionaries, it is still nerve wracking and scary sharing the Gospel. But it is so worth it. The church wouldn't even exist without missionary work and it is a commandment of God. We just have to take that leap of faith. Open your mouth because we have the knowledge of the restored truth. And think of how the Gospel has blessed your lives and your families. Shouldn't everyone have the opportunity to receive those blessings themselves? And if you get turned down, it's ok. :) Everyone has their agency. I get turned down daily, haha, but that doesn't mean we give up or stop working.
I know that this is where I am supposed to be right now in my life, serving God. I love the Philippines and the people here. Nasayud ko nga tinuod ang ebangheylo ni JesuKristo. Manunubos ug Maluluwas Si JesuKristo. Nahigugma ang Dios sa ata. Nasayud ko nga nagpahiuli ang Dios sa ebanghelyo ni JesuKristo pinaagi ni Joseph Smith. Nakakita Si Joseph Smith sa atong Langitnong Amahan ug ni JesuKristo. Propeta siya. Gihapon, Nasayud ko nga naa ta'y buhing propeta karon, Si Thomas S. Monson. And if you read the Book of Mormon and pray to know for yourself if it is true or not, God will answer you, because I have read, and prayed. I still read and pray every day and I know that it is true.
Nahigugma ko sa inyo.
Until next week,
Sister Healey :)
Eating fresh coconut
"I saw a spider bigger than my hand!"
Sunday, October 18, 2015
Kamusta mga gwapo ug mga gwapa!
This week flew by! I can't believe it is already P-day again! I heard there is a typhoon hitting the northern Philippines right now, but don't worry, I'm safe. :) It's been pretty windy and rainy, but nothing bad.
This week I had exchanges in Biliran, Biliran! My companion for the day was Sister Clerigo. She is a Filipina from Mindanao and her first language is Cebuano, but Biliran is a Waray area. Haha She has spoken waray her entire mission. She was really funny and nice and helpful with the language. She told me my accent was kind of funny, how I pronounce things. haha oh well. There's nothing I can do but practice. I hope one day I can speak like a native. Be totally Bistak.
Kim had His baptismal interview 2 days ago so he is getting baptized this Saturday! We are so happy and excited for him. He is so awesome. We've been trying to contact less active families and have also gotten some new investigators. I have such a strong love for these people and the gospel of Jesus Christ. There are a lot of less active members here. I think a lot of it starts because they don't do the basics. They don't pray or read their scriptures daily. That is SO important. Then eventually they stop going to church. As we teach them, I just want to do whatever I can to help them feel the spirit and come to know the truth for themselves. Heavenly Father really has prepared people to receive the restored gospel. It is our job and responsibility to share what we know is true. Missionary work isn't just people with nametags out knocking on doors. It is the members. It's everyone inviting and helping others come unto Christ. It's testifying. I challenge all of you. Please. Share the gospel with a friend, a co-worker, a family member, an acquaintance even. And if they turn you down, cool. It's fine. We all have agency, don't get discouraged. Try again. Invite someone to church, to take the missionary discussions, give out a Book of Mormon. Do something. Because it is through the members, not just the missionaries, that we bring people unto Christ. Kaya Ninyo. :) I know you all can do it. The spirit will testify of the truth. Gihapon. Pray and read kada adlaw (every day). And GO TO CHURCH. I know it can be boring and long. But that doesn't matter. Think about why we actually go and go with a good attitude. With a question in mind, and I know the spirit will answer it.
Ok. Rant over. XD
This week a petty cab driver chased Sister Newton and I down the side walk a few blocks wanting to give us a ride. haha he was so persistent. But he finally left.
I cleaned and ate some raw fish the other night! And some fried clam! That was really good. Sister Newton and I got some t-shirts printed because they are way cheap here. Our companionship t-shirt says "Naval: Asa kita karon" (where are we now) then on the back, "Wala ko kahibalo."(I do not know) because our area is so huge, a lot of the time we get lost. hahaha but we always find our way back home, even if we have to ask for directions. It just creates more opportunities to testify and share the gospel!
But anyways, I'm doing great! Loving life. Loving the gospel! I know that this is the Lord's work! I love you all! Until next week!
Sunday, October 11, 2015
Kamusta kada usa!
Guess what?! I ate balut! hahah There is a reason why they only serve it at night time. It wasn't too bad, just kinda cruchy... hahah it mostly just tastes like boiled egg. This week I have also eaten squid, stingray, crab, fried fish, and as usual, lots of rice.
It was so awesome watching General Conference this weekend! It is a week later here and we just watch recordings. Because of the time difference we can't watch it live, but it was so awesome hearing from the General Authorities and our Prophet! And it was in English so I could understand it! haha (They had Cebuano in another room.) I know that we are so blessed to have a living prophet on the earth today. I wish I had more time to talk about some of my favorite talks, but I don't. SO if you missed a session go look it up on LDS.org! My favorite one was Saturday morning session! And I know before my mission I often missed that one, but it was awesome so go watch it! Or read some of the talks. You'll thank me later. :)
Some one liners from Conference:
• “The journey of discipleship is not an easy one” – Larry R Lawrence
• “Are we making our discipleship too complicated?” – President Dieter F Uchtdorf
• “The more we walk in this path of discipleship, the more we desire to learn the word of God.” _ President Dieter F Uchtdorf
• “Exaltation is our goal; discipleship is our journey.” – President Dieter F Uchtdorf
• “Our core, the center of our lives, must be Jesus Christ and His gospel.” – Richard J Maynes
• “Our lives must be centered with exactness in Christ if we are to find true joy” – Richard J Maynes
• “As missionaries, we must be righteous, follow rules, and be prepared for difficult situations.” – M Russell Ballard (and we are all missionaries so this applies to you all gihapon)
• “Our Savior is able to comfort, heal, and strengthen all men and women everywhere, but I believe He does so only for those who seek Him and ask for His help.” – Dallin H Oaks
• “It is essential that we read and study and ponder the scriptures.” – Thomas S Monson (Prophet)
• “We do not strive for conversion to the Church but to Christ and His gospel.” D Todd Christofferson
We have 2 new investigators this week! The Labador Family! They are an old couple, but have so much faith! I'm so excited to share the gospel with them, we have taught two lessons and have a return appointment!
I've been doing well! My companion and I get along great! It's humid as ever! It's so funny walking down the street. Because we are two American's we get lots of stares and catcalls and people trying out there English. Things like "Good Evening", "Hey Best Friend", "I love you!", "Where you going?" and things like that. It's so funny because of their accents and then we respond in the language and they are always so shocked, and say "Oh Bisaya!" and just the looks on their faces are priceless.
I am a giant here. But that's not new. haha I have to duck and slouch a lot to fit in little houses and tindahans. So sorry mom, but my slouch has gotten worse. haha
There are roosters and chickens EVERYWHERE. haha because everyone here gambles on Cock-fights. And we woke up at 5:30 this morning to go jogging and all of the roosters on the island were cock-a-doodle-doo-ing. And I swear it sounded like something out of a horror movie. Chickens could take over the world. But like we will be walking down the road and people just have roosters tied to a tree or bush or gate. They are more common than dogs. And there are a lot of those too. haha
Anyways that's just a tiny bit of my life right now. Wish I had more time, but I've been good about writing in my journal so I'll have lot's of stories when I get back!
Note: Balut is a partially developed duck egg that has been cooked for 18 minutes. You poke a hole in one end and suck out the broth then crack open the egg and eat the yolk and partially developed embryo. It's considered a delicacy in the Philippines. (Gross!!)
This is us trying to get a group picture but the Filipinos are so funny, they all smoosh together and fight to see who can get in frame for the picture, so we all just get closer and closer to the camera...
and this is how it turns out. haha
The charcoal is from FHE after a game of "concentration" haha its kind of like signs but its fast and you can't mess up on passing your sign otherwise you get a mark on your face. It was fun and of course they picked on us.
Sister Healey and Sister Newton with Zeniada Abrigo.
We received a really nice letter from Maddie's Mission President. President and Sister Maurer take great care of the missionaries and have a great love for each of them.
Brother and Sister Healey,
I just wanted to send you a quick note regarding your daughter. Sister Maurer and I spent an evening with Sister Healey and her companion on Saturday night. We visited their apartment and actually ended up taking them to church for General Conference.
She is doing great. She seems to cope well with the Philippines and the adjustment required. She certainly is excited to be a missionary and I can see that she will indeed develop into one of the finest missionaries. Thanks for sharing her with us and the people of Tacloban. Her attitude and desire is simply great. She doesn’t seem to have any home sickness, which is always disappointing from a parents point of view, so is generally happy to be here.
Monday, October 5, 2015
Kamusta kada usa!
It's been kind of a rough week, but so many amazing things have happened as well! We got punted a lot and almost all of our appointments fell through because the people wouldn't be home or would just tell us not to come back. It happens, and people have their agency. But I'm not discouraged! We have been able to do quite a few on the spot lessons! It's so awesome when we would start to share our message then families would invite us into their homes. The spirit was so strong as we testified and taught. And a lot of the time we almost didn't even talk to those people, but it turned out so well and they were interested. It just goes to show you how the Lord really does prepare people and we don't know who does or doesn't want to know. And sometimes I think even the people themselves don't know until it happens. That's why it is so important that we open our mouths and follow the spirit. I know that Heavenly Father has a plan for all of us and that we need to do our part, live righteously and worthily so that we can listen to the promptings of the spirit.
I had my first rainfall here in the Philippines! And we were caught without umbrellas! Haha so we were soaked within seconds. And there was a funeral this week. It was a part-member family and was really sad because a lot of the family seemed so lost in despair. I am so grateful that we have the Plan of Salvation and I know that we will be able to see our family again someday.
We have one progressing investigator with a baptismal date! Kim Piamonte! All of his family are members and we are so excited for him! Other than Kim, we have mostly been out teaching less-actives and proselyting. Filipinos are so awesome. I love the culture here. They say yes by raising their eyebrows, they don't nod their head. It makes me smile every time. And they point with their lips.
Everyone calls us "Mam" and I thought they were saying "Mom" haha. I was so confused for my whole first week until I asked Sister Newton about it. She just laughed. So many things here are new and different, and even though she is American, she just forgets about it because it's what she is used to now. She said she will probably have a culture shock when she goes home. I feel like I have been in Naval for forever. Our area is so huge, I don't know if we will ever be able to go to all of it. This week there was A fiesta where the Catholics worship their Saints, so there were a lot of street vendors and family gatherings going on. And a lot of Karaoke. haha they call it Videoke? If that's how you even spell it. And whether they are good singers or not, (most often not, haha) they just blast it. It's so fun.
I've been eating a LOT of rice and fish. haha. And so far the only thing that I just don't like is Jackfruit. haha that stuff is gross. It's like a vegetable and a fruit. There are so many different kinds of fruits here! It's awesome!
SO much has happened and I have experienced so many amazing things. I'm excited for the rest of my mission and for all the amazing people I will meet and experiences I will have.
Love you all and hope you're doing well!
It's so beautiful here!
The view from our apartment. Just a small glimpse of Naval. We are on the edge.
Sister Healey and Sister Newton
Monday, September 28, 2015
Kamusta Pamilya ug Amigos!
I'M IN THE PHILIPPINES! Seriously so much has happened I don't even know where to begin. The Philippines Tacloban mission has three islands. Samar, Leyte, and Biliran. I arrived in my area Naval, Biliran Thursday evening. My companion is Sister Newton from Boise, Idaho! They speak Cebuano here! As well as Tagalog and Waray,... But our area is mostly Cebuano.
So I am the one lucky soul who got assigned to an area that actually uses what we learned in the MTC, pure Cebuano. But I know nothing... Seriously, they talk so fast and mumble and it's hard, but I love the Philippines. The people are so funny and friendly. And they use their eyebrows so much! Haha it makes me so happy.
Missionaries haven't been in this area for a whole transfer and so we are whitewashing the area. It is Sister Newtons last area, but first Cebuano area, Her whole mission has been in Waray. Naval is a huge area and there are only two of us, but the branch members of the church are so friendly and willing to help teach. It's a good thing too because half the time Sister Newton and I have no idea where we are. But we are slowly learning the area. We met this super cute member family who have been members for just a few years and have worked with the missionaries a lot. We have one progressing investigator who has been taught almost all of the lessons from previous missionaries. His name is Kim. He is a part of that family who has been showing us around. And the only non-member who lives here in Naval. He is kind of shy, but a really sweet kid.
People weren't kidding when they said I would stick out! Everyone here is SO short. haha and I am a tall, white, blonde, Americana. A lot of people stare and do double takes. haha And it is so humid here! Thank goodness we have fans in the apartment. I don't think I will ever wear my hair down my whole mission because it is just too hot.
It's definitely different here, but I haven't had too much of a culture shock. It's not bad. Just different. :) Yesterday Sister Newton and I taught an “on the spot” lesson with a family and I was able to give them a Book of Mormon! They seemed a little curious and we got a return appointment for today! We've talked to so many people, (or at least I have tried to) and it feels so amazing being out serving and sharing the gospel. I know that I am doing the Lord's work and I truly love these people. And Filipino children are seriously the cutest.
I know that God loves each and every one of us and He has a plan for us to be happy and to return to live with Him again. I love you all and hope you are all doing well. And please. Share the gospel with others. Of course don't force it on anyone, and respect others beliefs, but make sure you are being a member missionary because the Lord's work is the most important.
Live your life by these two principles and you are set:
1: Love God.
2: And love each other.
When we live our lives service oriented, that is when we feel the most joy and happiness.
I love you all! Have a good week! And don't forget your daily prayer and scripture study! It seriously makes SO much of a difference.
Until next time! Amping!
Note: An "on the spot" lesson is when you meet someone and teach a lesson right then instead of making an appointment to visit before teaching.Arrived safely in the Tacloban Mission
President and Sister Maurer, Sister Healey and Sister Newton
Sister Healey, Sister Newton and the member family that has been such a help to the missionaries.
Friday, September 11, 2015
Kamusta pamilya ug mga amigos! (Turns out "higala" is deep Cebuano and rarely used)
This will be the last time you hear from me while I'm in the States! Next week we fly out on Thursday so we will miss our P-day! So I don't know when I'll be able to email next, because I'll be in the PHILIPPINES!!!
Yesterday we got to Skype with some Filipinos again! And they complimented my Cebuano! I'm sure they were just being nice... haha but It was so exciting! The sister's whole family was there and they all were so excited to talk to us, we didn't really get to teach a full lesson. But we bore our testimonies and they did too. I am so pumped to just be there already. I have no clue if my first area will be Cebuano or Waray-Waray, but I'll let you all know next time!
Yesterday was also In-field training, but it was with everyone who is leaving within a week so everything was in English. I'll tell you what, it was weird teaching and testifying in English. And WAY easier! But I'm so thankful for the mission I have and wouldn't want it any other way. I love the people in the Philippines already. It has been such a humbling experience learning a new language. I know there would be no possible way for me to do this without God's help.
Ether 12:26-27 “…the Lord spake unto me saying: “Fools mock, but they shall mourn; and my grace is sufficient for the meek, that they shall take no advantage of your weakness;
And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.”
It is through our Heavenly Father that I have strength and will be able to do anything. It won't be me changing peoples’ lives in the Philippines, it will be Him. I'm just a tool in His Hands.
Kanusa kamo magampo nga ihatag mga salamat para inyong mga panalangin. Count your blessings.
Gihiguma kamo sa Dios.
Keep on keepin on.