Monday, June 27, 2011

Hello family. Well this week has been good. We've just been working hard and doing our best. We've been working a lot with unordained male members and part member families, because that is what President Tobias has instructed us to do. In Kabankalan ward there are 183 unordained males. Only 2 are active. Yikes! Our work is cut out for us! Hopefully this next transfer they send 2 more missionaries here so we can split the area and hasten the work here. One of the biggest problems here is that people get offended really easily by other members and things like that, and they don't understand that being offended is a choice. They also don't understand exactly what they promised when they were baptized. That is what we are trying to help them understand. The other big excuse is they don't have plete, or money for travel to get to the church. Sometimes its understandable because they have big families and they are poor and kind of far away from the church and they can't drag their little kids all through the hills to get to church, but there are a lot of them that they could walk, and their faith is just not strong enough. They don't understand the reason why we go to church. But the work is going well, and we are helping people understand these things. The best way is through the members. Any time we go to less active/inactive members we bring active members, or there is really no point in us going to them. They respond much better when they feel the members actually care about them and things like that. Usually every Sunday we go on splits with the members and go "home teaching" Home teaching is a little different here, and most people don't really know how to do it, but it's all right because now they are at least trying and learning. They have realized that the Lord has given them a chance to progress this area by giving them 2 more missionaries, and they are getting excited about the work now it's really awesome. There is an amazingly huge difference in the work when you have the help and participation of members, and when you don't. Anyway, things here are going well, and I'm enjoying the work. I think maybe when I get old and retire one day, I'll come live in the Philippines. I think I turn 20 this week. Thats old! I'm gonna look like the crypt keeper!! Well thats all for now. Love ya'll! Elder Andersen

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

 Just some funny signs. And that big old boa constrictor!

 Just a few pictures! Eating Snails!

Tried to go swimming, but there was no water in the pool!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Hello family! Another week has come and gone! Things went pretty well this week. Except I got a little sick and had to go to Bacolod yesterday so I could get a check up from the doctor so I could get the medicine I needed. But it's fine now, so no need to worry! I can't really think of anything to write about, cause this week we've just been doing a lot of visiting to members and teaching them how to share the gospel with their friends because we need more investigators, and everyone knows tracting is really not effective, so we've been really working with the members and trying to help them share the gospel and give us referrals. I did see some cool things this week and was going to send you pictures, but my card reader wont work so I'll just have to wait till next week. But I saw I giant boa constricor (I know you'll love that mom) and the pictures of snail we ate. And just some other pictures. Hmm this week we ate "Poorboy Soup" Which is a soup containing the reproductive parts of animals, usually cows. And I don't mean just the testicles. Yep. It really wasn't bad at all, it was pretty good as long as you didn't keep reminding yourself you were eating a cows penis. Our investigators are doing well, we're teaching a couple of families that are doing well, and it's always awesome to teach families. But one of our major focuses here is reactivation. There are 700 members in the Kabankalan ward, but only 92 came to church on sunday. So our work is cut out for us in that department. It's sad because we know that if they don't come back to the church, it would be better for them that they were never baptized. The problem here is most of them live out in far away places and it's hard for them to come to church, and so over time they just became lost, and some of them have even gone back to the Catholic church and stuff. It's a sad thing to see. Missionary work is some of the happiest work one could ever do, but at times it is also the saddest. But that's the plan and so that's how it's gotta be. Just gotta keep doing our best. Going to Bacolod yesterday was pretty cool. Makes me feel like I'm back in America almost. Eating at Pizza Hut, going to SM, seeing other white people, etc.. I guess that is all for this week. Thank you all for all your love and prayers. Love Elder Andersen

Monday, June 6, 2011

Well hello family. Another week has come and gone, and it's already June! This week has been good. So Kabankalan is quite a big area, but we don't work out in the far away places, unless we are working with inactives, who are inactive because they live so far away from the church, and because they weren't really converted. I honestly don't know what missionaries were thinking back in the day when they would just go out in the bukid and baptize people, cause now there are sooo many inactives/ less actives. There are about 500 members on our cmis, but only about 110 or so that actually go to church. It's a little ridiculous, so we do a lot of working with them, as well as with investigators. So we have to plan and balance out our schedule of visiting them and visiting our investigators. Right now we have a family we are teaching, and they are really good, and should be baptized in July, but it depends cause the tatay hasn't stopped smoking yet, so he has to stop first obviously. Then we are teaching this other guy and he's in his mid 40's and his wife died a couple of years ago, but he is really a neat guy, and when we meet with him he just really gets things. He always is telling us stuff he sees in other religions that they do wrong and it's just really cool to find people that actually know about stuff like that, because most people are like "We're Catholic and we're gonna stay that way" But they have no idea what their religion is all about. Then you get other people that say stuff like this:"As long as you accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, you will be saved." So yeah, gotta love it. So I figured I'd tell you all a little funny story that happened this week. It actually happens quite often, I've just never told you about it before. So we were trying to find this less active family, and we went to the house and said "Tagbalay" (thats what you say when you go to peoples' houses) and this girl answers back and said "waay tawo di!" (There's no one here!) So I said back to her, "Te, ano ka, amok?" (So, what are you, a monkey?) Then you could just hear her giggling and then she just said "Wa'ay tawo di!" again! So I was like "pwede kami magpamangkot?" (Can I ask a question) she said "Ano" and I said "kilalala mo ang pamilya so and so" (do you know the so and so family) and she answered "didto sila sa pihak" (Over there on the other side) So we left the house and just as we were leaving some little kids came up and I asked them, "nagaestar kamo diri?" (do you live here?) And this little girl nodded her head yes, and I asked her if her last name was the name of the family we were trying to find and again she nodded her head, so I started laughing and just said, "ok salamat. Maghambal ka sa imo nga ate, nga hindi dapat siya magbulig." (tell your older sister that she shouldn't lie) and she was like "Ok Elder, hambalon ko sia" (ok Elder, I'll tell her). So that was just a little experience. Pretty funny. People always tell you there is no one in the house, but yet they are talking to you. I don't understand it. I don't know why I told you the whole Illongo conversation, it would have been a lot easier to just write it all in English, but whatever. So yeah, things are going well, Elder Jensen and I get along really well and work well together, and have a lot of fun. But not too much :) Thanks for everything you all do for me and all your prayers! Love you all! Elder Andersen  P.S. I ate snail for dinner last night! Yum!