Wednesday, January 28, 2015

ihap ang mga panalangin nimo

I've been counting my stinkin blessings this week!

We did a service project as a zone for a family whose house just burnt down and they literally lost EVERYTHING in the fire- their clothes, their money, their pictures, their journals, etc. We hop over there the next day and this family is just having a party with their neighbors next door, super happy, and trying to feed all 20 of us missionaries with the little food the community donated to them. That basically defines Filipino's perfectly. They are seriously the most amazing people in the world!

Besides that, Sis.Bolo and I are having a ball! She always busts out Tagalog in our lessons, which is totally fine because our investigators usually understand. Except I don't, but I still always testify that what she shared was true, hoping she hasn't shared any false doctrine. JK, she'd never do that haha

And the last reason why I'm feeling like a lucky duck is because Sis.Bolo and I have 7 IBD's (investigators with a baptisimal date). I repeat, 7 IBD's. That's double the total amount of IBD's I had my whole entire year as a missionary. Unbelievable.

We're basically rolling in blessings!

I am happy, healthy, and I love missionary work. The more months I'm on my mission, the more and more happier I get. The First Presidency promised all missionaries that "More happiness awaits you than you have ever experienced as you labor among His children." I certainly testify of that! Hope everyone is finding that same joy in their life!

<33333 Sister Lauck

p.s. mother and daughter at the beautiful cebu temple this morning (:

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Naganak Na Ko!!!!!!

Well it's official. I have posterity in the mission aka I'm training a new missionary! My beautiful trainee (in missionary lingo, she's called my "child" or in Bisayan, "anak") is Sis.Bolo! She is sooooooo cool! She's 19, the 2nd oldest of 11 children, about a solid foot shorter than me, from Manila area, and is Tagalog speaking. aka she doesn't know Bisayan and very little English aka we've been doing alot of charades. Good thing I like playing charades (: Also I've been learning way more Tagalog, so that's a huge plus! And to put a fun twist on things, me and Sis.Bolo are white washing an area together which means we are both new to our area, Consolacion (which is like super city). I got the phone, area book, and keys to the apartment earlier from the old sisters that were assigned here previously and it was kinda like a "welp, you guys have fun" kind of things haha I'm sensing we'll be having lots of new adventures (:

It was definitely hard leaving Danao because during my six months there so many amazing things happened for my investigators, and especially for me. (and there were SO many miracles my last week there, but my time's almost up so I'll share em next week!). But it was as equally hard to part ways with Sis.Clegg. Even though we were only together for 1 transfer, we really were the dream team! Her strengths were my weaknesses, and her weaknesses were my strengths! Just last week we were riding on a motorcycle out to one of our more mountainous areas and kinda just reflecting on everything that had happened in our transfer up to that point - and we just couldn't get over how blessed we were as missionaries!!! We've both come to the point that we've really understood our callings as missionaries. We're not just 20 year old girls going on a "mission trip" to the Philippines. We are representatives of Jesus Christ of His restored Church that have been given His power and authority to declare repentance and work miracles in His name. That's huge! And our confidence comes in no way from our own individual ability, but from the fact that we are set apart representatives of Him. What can I say, I LOVEEEEE being a missionary. I've never happiness even parallel than to what I've felt this past transfer. What can I say? Gotta love missions! 

lots of love,
Sister Lauck

p.s. for pictures: I finally got a hold of my batch picture from our xmas party (it also holds evidence of my wheelchair days)

me & Sis.Bolo, my anak!!!!

me & Sis.Clegg parting ways at the mission office

Sunday, January 4, 2015

1 Year!!!!!

Things are just swinging here in Danao as usual! Not only did we hit 2015 over here, but Sis.Clegg and I celebrated the big year mark together on New Year's Day!!!!!! Sadly we didn't do anything cool to celebrate it because we were too busy working and being stuffed with food by members and investigators.

But yeah speaking about New Year's - I should say that since about Dec.15th we have been hearing non-stop explosions going off. Remember how I said Danao was the gun capital of the Philippines? Well clearly there is also an excess of fire workers and gun powder and just about anything else that will make your ear drums burst because it has literally felt like we are working in a war zone!!!!!!! (Good thing I'm still half deaf) My favorite was seeing the little 6 year old kids carrying around their homemade bazooka guns that they load with dynamite... hahaha Sis.Clegg and I were like, "what the......" And then we started the new year watching How to Train Your Dragon 2 with our district, so that was a little treat! Sis.Clegg and I kept making Gospel parallels to everything in the movie, so that's clearly evidence that we've been out here too long!

But despite how fun and popping this week has been, the best part by far has been watching people with serious sins being changed by Christ. And when I say serious, I mean serious - drugs, prostitution, adultery, stealing, etc. And since we've been teaching them about Christ's restored church and His Gospel they've been making HUGE changes in their life as a result of their desire to come unto Christ. In the words of our investigator, "Ever since you started teaching me and I started reading the Book of Mormon, I felt like what I was doing in my life was wrong. So I threw away the drugs, stopped drinking, and quit my job at the bar. It just felt like the right thing to do." That's one of the phenomenal miracles of Christ - when we try to come unto Him, He changes us, makes us whole, and puts us on the path headed to our Heavenly Father. I'm just the luckiest duck that as a missionary I get a front row seat to the Atonement in people's lives! I really really love my calling! And I'm a little bummed that I only get  6 more months of this, but I'm definitely doing my best to soak it all up and enjoy this amazing ride (: I love everyone so much! Hope everyone makes some awesome New Year's Resolutions that will in some way strengthen their relationship with Christ!

lots and lots and lots of love,
Sister Lauck <3

p.s. for the pictures: 1. me in my kick butt area! isn't it gorgeous???!  2. me & my favorite grandma in the philippines! she requested we take a selfie and I just couldn't turn that down haha 3. the new year's feast a less active laid out for us!