Thursday, August 6, 2015

April 7, 2015

Whenever someone transfers from the ward... they get egg'd and flour'd. Me and Elder Madrid were the targets and bishop joined in for fun.

My baby girl is gonna be a momma

Me and Sister Strickland switched clothes and hair-do and EVERYONE noticed. XD Best last Sunday ever.

The wedding/baptism day <333 :))) Such a great day.

March 30, 2015

Nooooooooooo. I'm a grandmother (again). 

I'm so proud of Sister Strickland. She's training right after we finish her training this week. But at the same time, I'm heart broken. I'm gonna miss her a ton and I'm leaving my absolute favorite area after just 2 transfers. Wherever I'm going will be my last area so I'm sort of nervous. It's ok I guess... we had a really good week.

Tuesday was zone interviews and it was a little different this time. We each had a 20 minute interview where we taught President Bertin the restoration. Then instead of having a day's worth of workshops while waiting for everyone else to finish being interviewed, we had a regular district meeting and went right out to work. We actually got picked to work with Sister Bertin so she took us out to lunch and worked with us in our area. It was a really fun day. Our investigators were a little intimidated by her presence and felt it necessary to speak all the English they could. It was really cute, she carries a very sweet spirit with her and I think the people felt it. 

Our highlight was probably yesterday. Sister Strickland and I both had special fasts that our baptisms planned for the end of the week will go through and for a few other purposes. Heavenly Father really came through after that. Julie passed her baptismal interview after finishing our lessons in just 6 or 7 visits. She's got a solid testimony and her brother is coming right along behind her.
That afternoon we tracted into this lady who was just as sweet as could be. She invited us in to listen and it turns out she has always wanted to listen to the missionaries because she is friends with the member next door, she was just too shy to ask about it. She said she envies their family unity in going to church together every Sunday and broke down a little bit about how she longs to have that kind of feeling in her family. So after that lesson we had a lesson with the member next door about missionary work and the atonement. We talked about how experiencing its blessings will help us have the desire to share with others so she could help the sister next door. She then shared her testimony of the atonement and how she knows it's a real thing. She recounted the experience of how her second pregnancy almost killed her, but she knew she wouldn't die because during the time her blood pressure dropped and they thought she was dying, she had a dream, or more like a vision, that her family was in the temple dressed in white being sealed. The spirit was so strong! I felt like she taught us more than we taught her. 

Our last appointment though was the best and the blessings of our special fast continued. We went to the house of this man we taught one time off the street who came to church once but hasn't come since. I almost couldn't remember their house until I saw his girlfriend standing outside smiling at us. She welcomed us into this tiny little room (with room for not much else than a bed and a few chairs) in what seemed like a community house. Brother Ronilo was eating dinner with his friend. He was so embarrassed and said he didn't invite us over to teach him because of the size of his living quarters but we reassured him it couldn't matter less. He talked about how he felt filthy, unworthy, and wondered why he should believe in God or that he loves him when there is so much pain and suffering in his life. So I asked if we could start with a prayer and he was pleasantly surprised. The spirit was already strong and when the lesson started I really felt the spirit guiding us. We shared from Ether 12 about how hope comes from faith in God and becomes an anchor for us in life and how missionaries are one way that God provides to show his love for his children and help them gain faith in him. He invited us back for Thursday and on the way out, his girlfriend grabbed me by the arm and said, "Don't give up on him. In all our years together, this is the first time he's ever opened up about this." She shed a few tears and we didn't know what to say. So we waited. After a moment, she asked, "Can you come back tomorrow while he's at work? I feel like you could really help me too." And then I felt prompted to hug her and when I did, she held on tightly and cried in my arms. Heavenly Father is good and he really does love his children. I love the moments I get to be the instrument in showing God's love to them.

As President Monson said, "Heavenly Father loves you -- each of you. That love NEVER changes." I testify that that is true.  


Sister Wilson

Fairview zone

While everyone else is bowling...

Batasan 2nd ward missionaries!

Some random guy off the street bought us snacks because it was hot out side and we had walked a lot. Faith in humanity restored!

Taco salad anyone?
Our friend in the ward made us our own basket of sticky rice! It's the best... we finished it by the next day

 She's not allowed to go in our apartment so we brought the table out, heheh.

Sister Strickland's reaction to the phone call last night saying she will train

One of the BEST dinners I've ever had -- shrimp sinigang (sour brothy soup with okra, eggplant, different vegetables) and fried fish.

Dessert was also delicious. Ube buko pie (layers of thick sliced coconut and the purple potato-stuff spread on it.)

The 3 in the middle are Charlie, Julie and Claire. Julie, the little one (21 years old, believe it or not) is being baptized on Saturday.

Another really delicious dinner we had -- stuffed fish, lumpia shanghai, and eggplant with shrimp paste

March 24, 2015

I thought the feet were cute. :)

Here we are again!
This week was the best! I got to feed a newborn puppy, eat the smallest banana in the world, and we finally had our baptism! I'll recap it quickly:

We started out with 2 baptismal interviews, the first was Sister Yolly. Right before we went to her interview I told Sister Strickland, "Hey, you know what would be funny? If she and her husband weren't married, like what happened with Brother Carlo and Sister Shara." We laughed too quickly. As we started filling out her baptismal record with her, she told us a different last name. As luck would have it, she's not married to Brother Bernie. In fact, he's still married to someone else but they've been separated 18 years. He and Yolly have been together for 9 years and have a child together so we asked the elders what to do. We wanted to cry... It didn't make sense because Brother Bernie was baptized last year while they were living together AND was ordained to the priesthood, so now we're questioning the elders who baptized him. How was he baptized without fixing their law of chastity problem? Thankfully, we found out all they have to do is get a certificate of no marriage which is a legal document that shows he is still married and can't marry Yolly but they have been togehter for long enough that she can be baptized. Divorce here is really expensive so nobody does it. On a happier note, she has been praying and asking the Lord to make her happy in life as a way of her knowing the church is true. She received an answer alright. She just found out she's pregnant and most likely with twins. She's practically beaming now when we see her. God works in mysterious ways!

We also had an activity -- a family home evening for investigators. We taught them how to hold family home evening, how to teach their children, about the eternal family unit and gave them a church tour. We placed the baptismal service directly after so that they would be able to witness one and see how it was done. It was a huge success! We taught Julie, our investigator, right before we went to the ward FHE and her brother who we had never before met told us he wanted to come. We were excited and taught him before the activity. After we finished the lesson, he read the whole pamphlet, started the Book of Mormon and came to church the next day with his sisters. I'm SO glad we bumped into Claire one day on the street, she saying she was a member and didn't know where to go to church. The result has been the unification of she and her two siblings as they progress toward baptism. At the baptism, Bryan bore such a sweet testimony about how he knew he had been forgiven of his sins and how he would not ever be returning to them.

Milanie... we miss her. She was a week away from baptism when she got a job. Now instead of teaching her laws and ordinances we're trying to maintain her testimony. Because of her job she stopped progressing completely. She works from 9PM to 6AM and she stopped reading the scriptures and coming to church. When we went there last night she hardly smiled, just kind of stared at the ground. I don't know what she's going through in her life, but the Lord does. So Sister Strickland and I decided to go over there without any plans. We decided to teach about how the Lord takes care of us no matter what but most especially when we are obedient. We talked about how much He loves her and wants to give her what's best. We asked her to pray about what to do at the end and when we looked up, there were tears in her eyes. I knew at that moment that the Lord was confirming what we had told her was true. It was amazing. This work is the best. I love these people. I love the way that I see Heavenly Father work through me. And...

I LOVE being a missionary. Have I ever mentioned that? 


Sister Wilson

Singing at the baptism

Bryan the day before his baptism

My kuto!!! I'll always cherish and treasure this in my journal.  (Lice.  Actual size.)

I had to take a picture here, this dog reminds me of Poppy. She's spoiled and eats better food than I do. She does the same begging thing as Poppy as well. Her name is Penny, pretty close.

Feeding a newborn puppy :')) It was literally only hours old and its mother was attacking it so we had to bottle feed it. We came there intending to teach a less active but they were busy with the birthing dog, lol.

This is the smallest banana I've ever seen, the length of my pinky finger and soooo gooood.

Editor's Note:  I'd asked Kenna to send more pictures of all the things she wants to remember, and all the things that if she relayed the information to you, you would never believe.  This is her reply:

The problem with taking pictures is... it's difficult for me as a foreigner because 1. it seems rude to photograph the squatter areas, 2. we aren't allowed to use cameras in proselyting, and 3. it makes me seem rich and people will want to mug me. So I don't take as much as I want to, but I have some this week you'll like!

My companion stole this sweet shot of Ira's uncle tying up her hair before he baptized her. 

My new favorite dessert - biko!!! Coconut sticky rice.

 Bryan's baptism, as well as Julie

Claire and some ward missionaries who always come with us to teaching appointments.


In case you all were wondering... these are the sisters who added you on Facebook. :)