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

Sunday, January 31, 2016

6 Months!!! Time is passing too quickly!

Kumusta Kamo?!

This week we received our new kabalay! Sister Malicdem and her anak Sister Pillora. They are super nice! I think Naval has turned into a training grounds for the mission! I have been here for a third of my mission! I can't believe this week I am reaching my 6 month mark. One year left!! I don't like thinking about it.. I love it here. 

This morning Sister Pongyan and I went to the Gym! We found one that is pretty cheap so we went and tried it out! It was so nice to be back in the weight room. But it was pretty funny. There were a few Joe's (old white men) there and one of them, a German, started talking to Sister Pongyan. I was still working out, but she told me he just came up and the first thing he said to her, "Hey, are you wearing it?" haha she was confused and asked him "wearing what?", and he said "your garments." So random. Then he went on to ask a lot of questions about the church and I guess he had done some research online and knows a lot of stuff about some reforms from our Church. He asked us about some name that is supposedly our prophet and how he is in jail right now. We were like. um, no, we don't know who that is.. but he said he might come to church on Sunday! Who knows if he will but it was a pretty interesting conversation. 

This past week our bathroom has been out of order because Sister Pillora's soap fell in the toilet and she tried to flush it... so there is a brand new Dove soap bar blocking the pipe. Luckily, until we can figure out what to do about it, or get it fixed, our "laba" or laundry area outside in the back has a little toilet. So if we have to go it is a race outside. haha 

Recently I have been reading in the Bible and studying how the Book of Mormon and the Bible really do support each other. How they are both so important. I know that scriptures are so important in our day to day lives. We have these tools that we have been blessed with and we don't even use them. Imagine being given a free brand new Porsche and then not even driving it. Sayang. Remember to read your scriptures every day! We need to study and know what we believe so when the day comes and someone asks what we believe, we are ready. 
"Seek not to declare my word, but first seek to obtain my word, and then shall your tongue be loosed; then, if you desire, you shall have my Spirit and my word, yea, the power of God unto the convincing of men." (Doctrine and Covenants 11:21

Amping Kanunay, 

Sister Healey

Note:  The "reforms" and the prophet in jail that the German man referred to are from the Fundamentalist LDS church.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for which Madison is serving a mission has no affiliation at all with the FLDS church, it's leader, or it's teachings.

Last day with Sister Maico and Sister Estrera

Monday, January 25, 2016

If you are not a full-time missionary with a missionary badge pinned on your coat, now is the time to paint one on your heart.

Maayong Buntag sa inyo tanan!
(Good morning to you all!)

Pasaylo! (Forgiveness!) I ran out of time last week! But don't worry! I'm still alive! These past 2 weeks have flown by! I'm sure I say that every email but it is so true! 

Last Monday we got up early and whet to the beach to play with some of the members! It was low tide so we were able to go out on the sand where usually it is ocean! It was a lot of fun! I took my beef jerky that mom mailed me (filipinos love beef jerky) and it was so funny, they were all concerned I was eating it "raw." I guess the last time I gave the Abrigo family some jerky, they cooked it then used it as their sud-an, or rice topping. haha I showed them and was just like, guys, it's already cooked. You can just eat it. They were so surprised. While we were out by the water some of the kids went and found a squid that we later cooked and ate. It was a fun P-Day. Last Monday we were just crazy busy and had no time. haha Today we have just cleaned all morning because tomorrow is transfers! Sister Pongyan and I will stay in Naval because we have 6 weeks left of our training. :) Sadly, Sister Maico and Sister Estrera are both transferring out so their area is being whitewashed. We will get new kabalay (roommates)! I'm sad to see them go. 

The Encina family has been really busy this past 3 weeks so we have not been able to teach them, but we will continue trying to help them in every way we can! 

We had exchanges on Friday so we went and worked in Biliran with our STL's! It was so fun! Sister Clerigo and I rode bikes! (no pictures, sayang) People gave me a lot of weird looks. We had to go get the seat raised because I am a lot taller than these tiny filipinas. haha It was quite the experience biking in a skirt, but we made it work. Waray was fun gihapon, and it was fun being in their apartment with so many sisters that night. Sister Sulunga, from Hawaii is super nice. She's half Tongan, half Samoan and she told me I'm her "Toko" which is pretty sweet. (Look it up) I like exchanges because it gives me the opportunity to learn different ways of teaching from other missionaries and you get to meet a lot more people. :) 

This past week we have tried a new way of sharing the gospel and contacting by handing out little Articles of Faith pass-a-long cards that have a map of where the church is drawn on the back, time, place, and the church website www.mormon.org. It has been really effective! We ran out! haha It was so cute, while we were waiting for our Barbecue Isaw (Chicken Intestine) which I tried for the first time, some of the little girls we talked to came and sat with us. We pulled out our little hymn books and taught them how to sing "I Am a Child of God" It was so cute and some people even stopped to listen! I could feel the spirit even though we only sang a song and didn't share anything. They all ran off and played then would come back and ask us what some of the words were again, then run off singing it. It warmed my heart. :) 

I am doing well. Sister Pongyan and I are going strong. I'm going to miss her when she heads out to the states. I love sharing this gospel and helping others come unto Christ. There was a quote I read recently:

"If you are not a full-time missionary with a missionary badge pinned on your coat, now is the time to paint one on your heart." - Elder Neil Anderson

I know that is so true. Before my mission I know I was not good about being a member missionary. I was not good about sharing the gospel. Sometimes I think I was embarrassed even, but don't be. If you are embarrassed of your religion then that means you are embarrassed of your Savior. We should fully embrace and hold dearly to our hearts the restored fullness of the gospel that we have been blessed to have in our lives this day. So I challenge all of you. Be better than I was. Share the gospel. Share the love of Christ with others, whether it is through your example, doing service, sharing an lds quote on FaceBook, or inviting someone to church. There are thousands of ways to be a missionary. As President Dieter F. Uchtdorf said, 

"Start where you are. . .  we don’t need to be “more” of anything to start to become the person God intended us to become. God will take you as you are at this very moment and begin to work with you. All you need is a willing heart, a desire to believe, and trust in the Lord." 

I love you all. I know you can do it. Just start now. :)

Amping Kanunay, 

Sister Healey

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Kickball on the beach, Teaching about Lehi's Dream

Maayong Buntag sa inyong tanan,

My anak has grown up so fast, 22 na siya. This past week has been kind of slow because both Sister Pongyan and I have been sick. Probably because it has been so hot and then it will sprinkle rain. Sister Pongyan calls it "Fox rain." But stop worrying mom, I'm still alive. And better now. :) 

We had an FHE/party for Sister Pongyan with the Abrigo family on Saturday! Right after the closing prayer they dumped flour on our heads, haha, and our faces were already black from the games. If you mess up then you get a mark, but I will have you all know that I did not mess up! One of the young men, Randulf, just went crazy and started putting charcoal on everyone's face. On the sikad ride home, everyone would shout out, "What happened to your face?!" haha 

This morning we all got up early and went to St. Nino (where the Abrigo family lives) to play games with the members. Because it was low tide we were able to go out right behind their house, which is usually ocean, and play. We played kick ball and a filipino game called Patintero. It was really fun. While we were out there, some of the kids found a few crabs and a squid that they took inside, cooked, and we ate for breakfast. I'm so tired right now, but it was so worth it. I love Naval, Biliran and the people here. 

The Encina family is slowly progressing. Tatay Encina still wants to have a fancy wedding, so we don't know when their wedding will be. But we recommitted them to baptism. Tatay said that he wants to read the whole Book of Mormon and understand it before he gets baptized. He reads every night for an hour! The other day he had questions about Lehi's Dream in 1st Nephi, so we are to go teach them later today about it. He was already making connections of how we have to hold to the Iron Rod, follow God's commandments, so that we won't be lost! haha Even though he still is stubborn about going to church because he has to work on Sundays, he practically forces his family to go to church. haha   The other day, Janel said she wants to serve a mission!!! I don't know how serious she was when she said it, but it made me so unbelievably happy. 

I know that this church it true. And I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. He loves each and every one of us and through Him we can overcome anything and everything.

2 Nephi 9:21  And he cometh into the world that he may save all men if they will hearken unto his voice, for behold, he suffereth the pains of all men, yea, the pains of every living creature, both men, women, and children, who belong to the family of Adam.

Moroni 7:33  And Christ hath said: If ye will have faith in me ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me.
I hope you all are doing well and staying warm! And until next week! 

Amping kanunay, 

Sister Healey

Family Home Evening with the Abrigo family

Kickball on the beach in St. Nino

Sunday, January 3, 2016

A LOUD New Years Eve and progress with investigators :)

Maayong Buntag sa inyo tanan!

Kamusta kamo?! How are all of your resolutions going?! haha Keeping at it? Better be because it hasn't even been a whole week yet! For new years in the Philippines, it was fun! "It's more fun in the Philippines." diba? It was SO loud. Here New Years is a bigger occasion than Christmas! So there wasn't a lot of work this week, but we tried nevertheless! Everyone was busy preparing food and there were even more people drunk than for Christmas. But every house we visited they offered us food and it is rude to refuse so we were so full on New Years Eve. I felt like I was going to throw up. And we when to bed at 10:30 new years eve, but then woke up at midnight because there were fireworks RIGHT outside our window. And There were firework everywhere! And everyone was shooting off there guns, horns were going off, I think I heard a chainsaw (even though I have never seen one here), and people just bang stuff together to make noise. haha there was no hope for sleeping. But the fireworks were really cool. And I am excited for my year of 2016 to be full of miracles and serving the Lord. 

Sister Pongyan and I are doing great! She is so funny and because she is white for a Filipina and her last name, everyone asks her is she is Chinese or Korean or Taiwanese. haha So we still look like 2 foreigners. It has been fun being with her and I am learning a little bit of Tagalog (Filipino) and Hiligaynon (Ilonggo). Because she does not know Waray or Cebuano. But we are making it work in lessons. Even though they are in like 5 different languages. And this week is her Birthday! She is turning 22! So email her and wish her a happy birthday for me! ;) (apongyan@myldsmail.net

This week I learned that when filipinos get annoyed or angry they bite their lip and raise their fist like they will punch you. I had noticed it before but hadn't really made the connection, but now we do it all the time. It is pretty funny. 

Tatay Encina shaved his head! He is clean cut now and they are working on marriage plans!

While being here in the Philippines I have been compared to Taylor Swift, Britney Spears, and Barbie. So that's funny. 

But I am doing well! I love the work! And no matter how many disappointments or trials we face, whether in the mission or life, I know that we can overcome it all through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Miracles happen daily, we just have to put in the effort to notice them. I love you all and until next week!

Amping kanunay!

Sister Healey

New Years Eve
Sister Pongyan and Sister Healey