Monday, May 23, 2016

5-22-16 This past week was amazing!

Alright kumusta po family!

 This past week was amazing! So many great experiences and tender mercies. It's still a little stressful being a District Leader, but I'm learning to love it more and more. This week I decided to teach about my favorite section in the Missionary White Handbook, about being an example as a leader. Although it specifically addresses those with leadership positions, everything said can & should be applied to us even before we receive such a calling. Just as Elder Umpat & I was about to go to work Monday night it started to rain and thunder again. Because of that we decided to just stay in and continue studying. In that time I was able to research more in depth each bullet point in the "EXAMPLE" section and learn more for myself. Thanks to that extra time given for us to study, the lesson went really well at District Meeting the next day. I was also super grateful that the AP's visited our zone that day and Elder Antenorcruz sat in on our lesson. Because of him and thoughts & additional comments of those in our district, I learned even more. My testimony on being a good missionary in every way was strengthened and I think we were all spiritually edified. 

 Something else I studied a little more in depth this past week was the Restoration. It's just amazing how everything worked out, how precise and perfect God's works are. Do you guys know the talk "Why the 1820's"? I've been trying to find and download it somehow. Herbert should know where to find it. 

 On Friday we had the privilege of going on splits with the zone leaders. I worked with Elder Cantero in Echague while Elder Hamp worked with Elder Umpat here in Alicia. We did splits so I could interview their baptismal candidate and one of them could interview ours, sister Charlyn. It was such a cool experiences working with Elder Cantero; he's a GREAT missionary! The first people we contacted, I thought were members already haha. He just saw a few people sitting on a bench near the road and was like "Hey! Nanay!" and cheerfully shook their hands and spoke to them. I only realized he didn't even know them when he was like, "May we introduce ourselves?" haha. He told me that when you talk to someone for the first time, just pretend you know them already so they can feel comfortable right off the bat. It was awesome to see him put his words into action and see how effective it really is. I also learned a lot from the way he teaches. Something I remember Herbert repeating a lot in Mission Prep was how we need to give people the milk before the meat, or one slice of cake first instead of just shoving a whole cake in their face haha. This means that when teaching investigators we need to teach simply and use terms that they can understand before going into the deep doctrine and stuff like that. Elder Cantero also mastered that concept. He introduced the Book of Mormon to one of their investigators in such a detailed, yet simple way. He even used the pictures in the beginning of the Book of Mormon to explain Jesus Christ's going to America and Moroni's promise, which I thought was awesome. Overall splits was great, and Elder Umpat said working with Elder Hamp was great too. 

 Saturday was the baptism of Charlyn Bucatora! It was such a sweet experience seeing our investigator finally enter the waters of baptism. The sister missionaries in our ward also had an investigator baptized along with Charlyn, and then a sister in our ward, Keith, who's been 8 for a while but only now was being baptized. Her dad is less-active right now, so she asked me to be the one to baptize her. I was honored and excited to do it. One of our fellowshippers, Jonathan Castro, baptized Charlyn. And our ward clerk, Brian Encarnacion, baptized the sisters' investigator, sister RoseMarie. 

 Yesterday (Sunday) was the highlight of my week. It was great hearing Charlyn be confirmed a member of the church and receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. On top of that though, we had 2 investigators, 2 potential investigators, and 4 less-active members attend church(one of them being the father of Keith)! I almost teared up haha; I was so happy. I was especially happy to see tatay Porras, the investigator who's been wanting to go to church but hasn't been able to because he can't yet walk on his own. He still can't walk without help, but he promised to attend church (for the first time) and so I was sooo happy to see that he kept his promise. This was one of those 1 Nep. 3:7 things. I know that no matter what it is, Heavenly Father will always provide a way for us to keep his commandments. We just need to exercise our faith in him by going & doing it. Tatay is amazing!

  Everything is just amazing here so far. I love my companion, the area, the work, everything. I'm actually really hoping to be Elder's follow-up trainer too so I can be here for at least one more cycle! Transfer day is coming up so quickly. I can't believe this is Ohu's last full week at home! It's a sad thought for sure, but that also means this is your last full week before becoming a full-time missionary! I can't tell you how much you'll love being a missionary Ohu. Thank you again so much for your help at home and for the experience you shared with me about knowing that this is the right time for you. I believe that this is the right time for you too. I'm crazy stoked to get a letter from you at the MTC! You better email me haha. Love you Ohu! 

 We actually went a little overtime here in the computer shop so I need to head out now. I love you guys! Have a great week! :)

Elder Ishibashi

Keith and Charlyn

Alicia 3rd Ward Missionaries

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