Sunday, September 1, 2013

Crazy We're This Close to Christmas...This Mission is Perfect for Me in Every Way :)

Hello Family and Friends!
 Happy September! Crazy we're this close to Christmas! Here in the Philippines, they start celebrating Christmas in September (this mission is perfect for me in every way ;) ), so I'm sure excited! Anyway, this week was pretty great! Here's the lowdown...

Monday we had ward family home evening. We brought the Jurada family with us. They are a part member family and so so awesome. Marielyn is 11 and an investigator. She is very smart and so sweet. Leonor, 17, is quiet and likes to cook (she always makes us dinner when we go sweet of her!) She reminds me a lot of Savanna. Denis is 21 and has had a bit of a rebellious streak, but he's very good to his sisters and his mom and super hard working. Teresa is 25 and the breadwinner of the family. Since she's the one that provides most of the money, she got to decide what color the house the couches are pink and the walls used to be too until she decided she liked mint green too. :) she's very into fashion and is just funny and she's really nice. Josephine, the mom, works all week in Handumanan and comes back on Saturday. Their dad left them a while back so it's just the five of them. They're all less active except for Marileyn. We've been teaching Marielyn this week and she just soaks in everything we teach her. It's been good to have her as an investigator because the whole family gets in on the lesson to help teach her, which is awesome because I think it reminds them of when the missionaries taught them at first and how important this Gospel is. It's been neat especially for Denis since he's a prospective missionary. They all came to church on Sunday, too! I feel fairly certain that this family will be reactivated, especially with us teaching Marielyn the lessons. They are such an awesome family. I wish you all could just meet them to know for yourselves!! :) 

We focused a lot this week on Chennie Angel Noblezada. She goes by Angel. She is 9 years old and so adorable. Her mom, Analie, has THE biggest smile, despite their very poor living conditions and trials. She definitely passed on her beauty to her children. Angel comes to church every week even though her mom can't because there's usually a sick child. Angel also is very helpful to her mother--very mature for a 9 year old. She's pretty shy, but she understood everything we taught her. :) Such a sweetheart. She was baptized yesterday, and things went a lot smoother than our baptism with Fera Jane. ;) It was a nice service and she looked so pretty dressed in white. :) 

This week Angie Lobaton told us some sad news. Dexter's work isn't paying them overtime, even when they work it, so they aren't able to save enough for all their expenses. They're thinking they might have to move across town to live with her mom in a squatters area. :( Thomas Soquilio, the member who is also their boarder (and is really fellowshipping them), was super nice and said they could have one month free rent. He told Angie that Satan is doing all he can to prevent her baptism this weekend. We asked her if she had been reading the Book of Mormon and she said she hadn't the night before because she was too upset. We told her that in times like this, when we turn to the Lord in prayer and scripture study, He will always guide us. We left her 2 Ne. 32 to read. Later in the week she texted us and they are staying for the month while figuring out what to do. Dexter wasn't able to get work off for Sunday, but decided to come to church anyway. :) It was fast and testimony meeting (and it was a really good one too). Afterwards he said the entire meeting he just had the strongest desire to have the same burning testimonies as these members. He just felt that this Church is true and he wants to be baptized on the 15th. :) He also plays basketball with Thomas and some other ward members during the week. Before they start they open with prayer and a scripture. He thinks it's so cool that they can just read a scripture and expound and he wants to be able to do the same thing. He said he was so grateful he let us come to his home to teach his wife, because now he knows this Church is true. :) The tender mercies of the Lord are incredible. I love this work! 

On Friday I'm pretty sure we had a typhoon. It was the hardest it's EVER rained here. Luckily we had weekly planning and by the time we finished our planning the rain had stopped too. It was sad though because the downpour left Fera Jane and other's houses filled with water to their knees. The water drained eventually, but it just made my heart sad. :( Later in the day we taught Marileyn Jurada. The rain started to pick up again so Sister Canimo said in the opening prayer that the rain would stop. Immediately after she said that, the rain stopped. I heard Marielyn give a gasp. It was so awesome!! After the prayer it continued to rain but not as hard. It was the neatest little miracle and I'm glad Marielyn was able to witness the power of prayer. :) 

Saturday we visited a member named Rica. Her daughter has epilepsy but she said she's been the greatest blessing in their lives, despite how hard it is. I'm so amazed every single day of the faith and lives of these people. They are so amazing! Sunday we had Relief Society exchanges and I was with a Sister who didn't know very much English. It really forced me to speak Hiligaynon, which was SO good for me. I realized that I actually know a lot more than I thought I did. Even though I was nervous at first to split with someone non English speaking, it was a tender mercy for me to know that the gift of tongues is real and Heavenly Father really is helping me with this language. I also found out that the man who translated the Hiligaynon Book of Mormon is in our ward! Alex Lecciones. He went to Utah and everything to do so. How awesome is that?
Anyway, it was a good week! This week is the last week before transfers, so I guess we'll see what happens next week! Thanks for all the prayers and love. And happy birthday to little miss Rach on the 3rd! I miss your hugs, Rachey. :) Hug my sisters for me, k? And good luck to Elder Dixon this Wednesday! You are in my thoughts and prayers. You will be amazing and bless the lives of so many in Spain. Love you!
Hope you all have a great week and I'll 'see' you next week!

Sister Dixon 

PS The best way to explain the Word of Wisdom to the Filipinos is 'sakit,' which means 'sick.' S-siagarellio, A-alak, K-kape, I-illegal nga druga, T-tsaa. I'll let you figure out what each means. ;)

Sister Dixon loves the children, and I think the feeling is mutual! 

Laundry Day

Sister Dixon's back yard. Can you spot the goat?

Sister Dixon's shoes made for a great bed for Mr.Toad

Sister Dixon and her companion had to cross this river. She said it went to their thighs.
I wonder how she did that in a skirt?

I am sure he has lots of legs!

We asked Sister Dixon in an email what her daily schedule was like. 
 She told us hour by hour, and said at 10:00 pm she washes her legs--they are muddy EVERYDAY from all the rain, rain,rain... and walking and walking and walking!!
Sister Canimo holding the plate to keep the water in the font for last week's baptism. Sister Dixon said that the water does come out brown and rusty--even in the font.

Pink cupcakes on a pink couch :)!!

YES...the lizard was on the egg in the fridge! 
Karissa wants our fridge to be like that.

Beautiful, beautiful children of God

Angel's baptism

The Alijis sister missionaries 

Walking along a bridge--what a CHAMP!!!

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