Monday, March 17, 2014

3.17.14 Happy St. Patrick's Day from San Enrique

Hello Everyone!

Sorry my email was so long last week, I just finally figured out everything I wanted to say and I had the time to write it, they probably won't be that long though. This week was really good, one of the best I've had in a while actually. Probably because Bacolod was so much fun. I love hanging out in Bacolod with all my mission buddies, we just have the best time and we talk to tons of people and share the gospel at every chance. When they hear Americans speak the language they flip because there are tons of Americans that come here and marry Filipina's and they don't know how to speak, but we do, so it's awesome!

Elder Farner (6'5") & I before meeting Big John

Okay, so randoms story for the week:
I was waiting in line at the ATM here in La Carlota to withdraw money from our support and then there's this huge white guy with this Filipino woman. This guys got missing teeth, and just looked totally different than Americans. I was with Elder Farner and he's like, no way that guy's American. I was like no way. Anyway, we ended up talking to him and he says,"How long y'all been here." I flipped out, I was like, you're a southerner????? haha. We exchanged introductions and his name is BIG JOHN! Such a southern name! He's from Tennessee and cuts cheese for a living. He's visiting his wife, who lives in Elder Pulsipher's area. Just super funny! Just a typical southern guy, totally backwoods redneck and I was just so happy to talk to Big John. 

Filipino basketball hoop

I guess you saw some pictures of our zone conference. It was good although, President didn't train much. It was all from the Zone Leaders, the Sister Training Leaders, and the Assistants that trained. President taught us about fishing with a net and catching fish and stuff... mean baptisms, I guess. The day before conference, on Tuesday we played ball in the morning, super fun! But you already knew that, then we went to Bacolod. I hate going to Bacolod because I always spend so much money. We ate at pizza hut and that was just the bomb! We had a group of 6 of us that were just hanging around and it was just so much fun. We went to Chinatown and bought NBA jersey's and new basketball shoes. All the Americans. Do I have some new D. Rose basketball shoes, made in China, not real, they look and feel somewhat real though. Super awesome and now we're going to play in them today. I bought a Monte Ellis jersey, so I have my last name on the back. haha. Super great, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to buy a fake jersey for so cheap that looks so real with my name on the back! So that was great. We stayed at the zone leaders apartment for Bacolod Central Zone, it was okay. I was just chillin with Elder Farner and Elder Schow all night. We talked for a super long time and it was great!
Zone Conference was some really good training. Elder Pulsipher gave a great training on being leaders and companionship's and stuff. He said Caine and Able were a companionship. Super funny and President was laughing so hard because one killed the other so he says, "Don't kill your comp." It was just funny I guess. And then there was a training all on learning Ilanggo and stuff and I was like, Cebuano's better! haha. Everyone got a kick out of it, but it's okay. I'm good at Ilanggo now too, so it's not a problem anymore. It's all come back! I still love Cebuano more, but my tone is a bit off since the tone is different in the different languages. 
President, I found a very LARGE net!

This week we worked in a new area that we've never gone to before and it's brought amazing success to our investigator pool and less active pool as well. It's not super far away, it's just in the back of a different part of our area that's out of the way a little bit. Anyway, we contacted a man, he was just sitting on a wall and I just felt like I needed to go talk to him, turns out, he's a member! Baptized here, moved to Manila, remained active there, then when he came back he didn't come back to church because he didn't know anybody I guess. However, his wife, yes they are married, isn't a member so we've been teaching her now and she's doing great! Their next door neighbor... turns out to be members as well and their youngest daughter isn't a member so we've been working with them to get her to be baptized too! Then we contacted another Less Active family that lives across the street from them and they had 2 kids that haven't been baptized yet! So it was way cool! We were blessed so much! 

Cute Filipino girl!

So I know I told you that they might be putting Sister in my area and we're gonna split it with them, just like we did in San Carlos... so the rumor was true. Monday night they right and told me to find them a house. So I didn't think much of it I thought I had time, Tues and Wed we were in Bacolod and Thurs we just wanted to work and get our numbers higher because we spend a day in Bacolod so we lost a day of work. Then Friday morning the couples show up at our house saying okay, let's go look at what you've found! I was like... we haven't found anything yet! We've only had 1 day! They said, Elder, this is top priority! I was like, well thanks for the memo! Anyway, I was commanded to find an apartment THAT DAY! So we walked around for 4 hours in the hottest day of the month I think trying to find something and we were left with nothing! This area is super small as it is and finding an apartment is super hard, nothing. at all. We were just walking and there was a woman next to us in a nurses outfit and looks like she just got off the bus and was walking home. The thought came to me to ask her where we can rent a house. So I did! She was shocked! haha. Her next door neighbor was renting a house. We went and looked at it, perfect, the couples came and looked at it the next day, then said that I had done a miracle... I was like... no really, but okay. ha. 

The work is till progressing pretty well. So far so good I guess. As far as the branch goes, still a little rough. Yesterday we had a meeting and I asked them to goal for baptisms for the month of April and was actually laughed at and then when I asked again, the Branch Pres. stopped the meeting and we had the closing prayer. I'm so angry! This is what we're supposed to be doing and they don't want to do it???! What is that! So I was upset, but I"m over it! They are excited for the sisters coming and I don't know if they'll change, I really hope they do! But I guess we'll see!

We should have a baptism coming up on the 29th... I'm really hoping it's going to happen, it's a huge toss up right now, but it should happen. They're doing good so far, the only problem is church attendance. We're doing the best we can though!

Well, I got a letter form Brandon Dennison, I don't know if y'all knew we wrote back and forth. This is the 2nd one I got from him Yesterday. It's good to hear from him, he writes a lot, I thought I wrote a lot, his letter was super long. haha. He's doing good, so let his mom knows he's all good. I sent one to Sam Anderson like 2 weeks ago... who knows when that'll get there though. 

I love you guys, we're going to go here soon after I email President Lopez and we're going to play basketball ;) YEH! Love it! I love you guys! Keep going! The Church is TRUE!

Elder Ellis

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