So we have talked about transfers before and I believe around 6 weeks ago I said something to the effect that I would be staying in Malolos for a long time. It is very apparent that that is not true, I will be leaving my area tomorrow and moving to San Jose Del Monte North. I will have a new companion, and Elder Jucutan will stay in Malolos. I am excited to move on and go to a new area – but at the same time, I am sad to leave the people I have come to know and teach. As a missionary, you establish strong bonds with people as you come to learn about their lives and urge them to improve. My new companion will be Elder Rasmussen, he is an American as well, and he has been in the mission about 8 months now. I am also moving to Elder Meyer's (my Zone leader and roommate) old area. He has told me a lot about it and I am excited to move on and meet people in this new area.
In San Jose Del Monte North (Or SJDM North for short) I will be on top of the mountains. I am really excited because I will get to see a very different culture there. In Malolos, they speak the deepest (oldest) Tagalog in the world. People in the SJDM use more English and their Tagalog might be easier to understand. I am kind of sad to leave Malolos because I have been pushed to use Tagalog and not rely on English. I to keep it that way, but I am afraid that my Tagalog will suffer if I do not have to use it as often.
So far, I have been doing alright in the language. I am excited to have an American companion; hopefully he will further my understanding of the rules of Tagalog. I hope to learn a lot from my time with Elder Rasmussen. My Zone leader told me he is pretty sure I will stay in SJDM for around 6 months, because I moved out of my training area so quickly. I like the idea of being there so long because it will allow me to watch the area progress and I will be able to help the people there for longer.
Still sad to go though. I will be leaving some good friends behind tomorrow; but I know I will make new friends and find new people everywhere I go. That is one of the best parts of being a missionary – no matter where you go, your call is to talk to people and help them in life, however you can. Teaching and preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ brings you close to people and establishes strong relationships.
We had another baptism on Saturday. The baptizee was Stella Gomez and she was a great investigator. I have a lot of hope that she will continue to learn and be strengthened in the church. I got to conduct the ordinance of baptism. This was my first time baptizing anyone. It was a very amazing experience. As I said last week: when you utilize power given of you by God to change someone’s life, giving them a gift like that, it is overwhelming. The words (if you are not familiar with them) in the baptism are " (insert name). Having been commissioned of Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost." I have received a commission from Jesus Christ to bring people to Him and to teach them the way. It is quite humbling when I think about it.
Culture: “Videoke”: It is like karaoke, but they will have some kind of video going in the. Everyone does this and, just like in the US, almost no one is good at it. People rent Videoke to celebrate a birthday or big event. Sometimes they have a pretty decent stereo and you can hear it several houses away. It is a very interesting part of their culture. People here love to sing, regardless if they are good or not. That is another way I fit in very well.
Tagalesson: Since I am leaving I will give you all some words about moving, or traveling in the Philippines.
Sakayan: Any form of travel or transportation
Malipat: To move
Malilipat: Will move
Pupunta: will go
So now that we have these words, let’s put them in a sentence to find our way in the Filipino world:
“Saan ang mga Sakayan pupunta sa _______ (insert place)”: "Where is the transportation going to __________?”
“Malilipat ako sa SJDM North”: "I will move to SJDM North"
Welp there you have it, now you can tell people where you are going and ask how to get there. I wish you luck in making it around the Philippines, especially in understanding people's replies to your questions ;)
I hope that you all have a wonderful week and feel God’s love for you. God loves you, not in a general sense, but He knows you and cares for every choice in your life. He loves you more than you know.
At the top: I got a Hello Kitty Face mask for sleeping. Deal with it.
I found a pile of Hay
Baptism of Stella: