Monday, November 4, 2013

November 4: Insights from a General Authority

Dear Friends and Family,

I only have a little bit of time today. It's the first Monday of the month so I'm going to Bacolod again for our zone leaders meeting. Even though I was just in Bacolod on Saturdaywith Elder Andersen. That was so awesome. We actually all got to shake his hand which was interesting. I've never shaken an apostles hand before. He's got a super amazing spirit that he brings. Although his message was a little different than I thought it would be. He only spoke for 45 minutes and 30 minutes was talking about his trip to Bohol to visit the church members there. He showed us some pictures and stuff, but I was excited to here HIM speak, but I guess it's okay. It was still amazing to be in his presence. He's a great apostle. One of my favorites actually. And the youngest. 

Monday we did an FHE at People's Park. I showed you pictures awhile ago. I taught a lesson to about 50 people on being on time to church. It didn't really do much, but I still did what I needed to do and to let them know that it's not very spiritual for others to be on time and then all these people keep walking in and stuff. So I just told them how I felt. Sister Lara taught them about temple marriage and directed it most of the S.A's in the branch so it was a good night. We also taught Edward, who's doing super great. He wasn't able to attend church because of a work meeting and we're just praying that his day off is Sunday. If not... there's no way he can be baptized. Unless his shift is in the afternoon. Gaisano is a super churchy kinda place... They have 3 o'clock prayer, but everyone shops there on Sunday. It's funny. haha. He always reads his assignment and now he prays! So he's doing great. 
Tuesday we had our first district meeting! I got a package from mom and dad! A letter from Court and finally mission supplies and pamphlets that we were waiting for! The Anderson's came at the end of our district meeting and sat in a little bit with us. We then had a member work with us, Brother Macmac. He served in the Manila mission and was actually an AP there. We learned tons from him actually and I learned a cool object lesson for word of wisdom which is good because I don't know how to teach it that well, so he showed me a great way to teach it using water and glass and yeah, hard to explain, but still, it was pretty cool. We taught a couple more less actives and then we taught Sister Yaya, or Crisencia. She's doing good and reading. The only bad thing is now her husband won't let her be baptized, so it's not going to happen. We're super sad and down about it actually. Because that was going to happen next week, but now it's not. So we're bummed out... but still, nothing we can do. He was cool to work with. 
Wednesday we did splits with members. I worked with Brother Ko. He's super cool and is like a Filipino Samuari. I don't know how to describe it. He's got the mind set of one and is way cool. Just talking about being able to take care of yourself in any situation. He's a cool guy. He's also got an interesting conversion story that I heard while we were working and it was great! He taught a lot of less actives and we get to combine our numbers with Elder Barangay and his companion for that day, so our numbers got higher. Then we had some awesome lessons with Edward again, he's going great! Like I said before. His wife, who's a member (LA) actually came to church on Sunday. First time in a long time! So it was super awesome to see her at church. So now we know there's going to be progression. We've also run into that part member family that we told you about. None of them actually came to church this Sunday. We didn't have a lot of people at church, we had 2 investigators, but other than that, not a ton were there. Even active members. There's a fiesta here in San Carlos right now, so I guess they were all still sleeping from partying or something. So we're going to teach them this week hopefully. They have 2 kids that aren't baptized yet, so we need to teach one (9 yrs old) and then bring them back to the church. 
Thursday I did exchanges with Elder Wilstead. We went to Sipaway Island, then to Punao, then to President's house to finish off the day with dinner and teaching Yaya. Normally people who are friends to work during exchanges. They either goof off, or just do something fun, or don't work that hard. Not me. Elder Wilstead and I worked all day super hard full on. It was an amazing day! We had some great lessons and the spirit was super strong! We talked about it at the end of the day and we were like, dang, I'm exhausted. After closing our day we talked a little more about our mission and all the things that we've learned and how it's going to help us in the future in our life. It's super awesome. Then we crashed in bed. It's nice to look back on the end of the day and be like, I gave it my all. Some days, even working my hardest, I don't feel like I've accomplished much, but it's nice to know that the Lord is still happy as long as I give it my 110% all the time. 
Elder Wilstead & Ellis on Sipaway Island

Friday we exchanged back and then got super punted the rest of the day. We did teach Edward again! He reads his assignments and committed for baptism! So we're super stoked about it. He always asks the best questions and they're always about what we are going to teach him. Like asking where do we go after we die? Right as we planned to teach the Plan of Salvation. The weirdest one was when he asked about baptism by fire, after reading 2 Nephi 31. haha. He's like, I don't want to burn! So that was funny, never had anyone actually read it in depth like that. Reason number 2345 why he's super awesome! Probably my favorite investigator I've ever taught. We then had to go home and clean the house because all the missionaries were sleeping over on Saturday because we were getting back late on Saturday from Bacolod seeing Elder Andersen. 

Saturday we went to see Elder Andersen. Pictures should be up soon on President's facebook! There were professional pictures done, so I don't know if there's any of me, but maybe there is. It was super awesome to shake hands with him, I think I already said that. We heard from Elder Ardern, Elder Clayton, and Elder Echohawk, they were super awesome actually. I love Elder Clayton. He's super just straight forward with everything. All the Filipino's were like oh crap, all this English is killing me! But it was super awesome actually. It was a spiritual Saturday for sure! Then we came home, that was our whole day!  I learned that everyone deserves to hear the gospel. We need to talk to everyone and give them that chance to accept it. That, and he was like, it's great to baptize 9 year olds who were baptized at 8, but we really to establish the church. I was like THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!! It's sort of a mission joke. 
Our zone going to Bacolod
Sunday we had Sister Leduna (Leticia) and Jamela at church. They're the family of Sherwin. That's 2 weeks in a row that they've come to church. They're super cool! They will be baptized on the 23rd of this month! Both of them. It's super awesome that they've been coming to church now. Before they wanted nothing to do with the church, now it's awesome. We also had to go to Canla-on to do an interview for baptism there, so they will have one this week again. They do have a lot of baptisms up there. I'm proud of them. Elder Wilstead's a good leader and a good district leader right now. Former Zone Leader so he really knows what he's doing. 
Well, that's pretty much my week. It was a super good week and the spirit was super strong this week and it was fantastic. Elder Andersen says that there are more packages waiting for me in Bacolod so maybe I'll get #2 this week! haha. Thanks for taking care of me everyone! It's been super good and I'm really enjoying and having a spiritual time here in San Carlos. I really love San Carlos. It's been the best part of my mission so far. I'm way more happy and I love the people, the branch, and the area and it's just been the best blessing ever! I miss you all back home and thanks so much for the prayers! I love you!
Elder Ellis

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