Sister Madison May Healey
Philippines Tacloban Mission
511 Maharlika Highway
Fatima Village
Tacloban City, LEYTE 6500

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Don't be afraid of rejection, stand up for what you believe in!

Maayong Hapon!

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! 

Sister Healey

Our Thanksgiving feast


Sunday, November 22, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving! Some things I am thankful for.

Maayong Buntag! 

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...

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 January 30, 2016! 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. Ether 12:27 Through 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!

Sister Healey

We found a baby goat!

It's so beautiful here!

In the Jungle!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

A family commits to being baptized, time is flying by!

Kamusta Kamo?!

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. :) 

Sister Healey

 language study

 At Specialized training with Sister Abrigo,
 a member from our branch who is doing a short-term mission

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Two new Sisters to help in Naval, a new family to teach, and a winking petticab driver

Maayong Buntag!

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 Healey

 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!

Sister Healey

I got to pet a lion!

Sister Newton, Sister Healey and a giant snake!

Service project.

Celebrating a member's birthday