Friday, September 21, 2012


Randdogg came!! It was such a good time. I'll tell you more about it on Monday.. here are some pictures! Oh, and I love you!!!! I got the package you sent.. haven't got a minute to look through it but I did see your love there. Thanks!

Philippines San Pablo Mission

Monday, September 17, 2012

Elder Bednar is COming!

HIgh Five to Families, Reflections, Elder Shane!

Howdy Team,

The pauwi (missionaries going home) are here in the mission home. I wrote about that in the journal. Anyways we were invited for some cereal at the mission home, so I thought that I'd stop by and email y'alls on the way back upstairs! I had a dream last night about meeting up with my brother.. I suppose you could say I'm a bit excited. He was shorter than me in my dream... But I know not all dreams come true ;) 

I just want to share a bit about one family we met the other night. We were on our way home around 8:00pm... with plans to stop by one less active member super close by... when a swarm of 8-10 yr old girls attacked me! This isn't an irregular thing in the Philippines, so I assumed the usual defense position, which is.. high fives all around! They love high fives from us. They call that an "up here!" except it sounds more like "AHHPP EERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRE!" with lots of rolled R's. 

After calming the swarm, I noticed one of their mothers watching from her house. "Hello sister, good evening!" 

"Magandang gabi rin.." (good evening too).. We talked for a moment and found that they were remembering her father's passing exactly one year before. Her husband came out and said, "hey, come inside and have a seat." So we did. Then we taught them a very simple, powerful lesson about families that can be together forever through the restored Gospel. Towards the end I mentioned that we had probably mentioned a lot of things they weren't familiar with and that we... "Yes, you will be coming back many more times. Any day around this time works," sister butted in. So cool! Finding families like that is such a sweet thing. It feels so good. I don't know if they'll progress yet, but the Spirit was felt that first night. 

I sure do love this work. Read the short journals I guess for some more details. I love the peace we can feel in knowing the Plan of Salvation, in knowing that we are doing His will. We have a Heavenly Father. He is real, He lives, and He loves us. 


Elder Brown

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Christmas Dinner In August

Oh mother.. I've told you a little bit about sister packer, right? She is so great. Pres and the APs were in Marinduque sat/sun this weekend, and because I came into the office shouting MERRY CHRISTMAS on Saturday, Sister Packer was inspired to make us four a DELICIOUS Christmas dinner yesterday. Complete with slow cooked turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, cooked veggies, Mandarin orange jello, and PUMPKIN PIE. I realize it sounds more like a thanksgiving dinner with the pie, but we celebrated Christmas. We sang some Christmas hymns too. I think I wrote about it in my journal actually. OK gotta run. love ya!

Howdy team,

I'm at the internet shop with no card reader again.. And I plan to go home and email my pics from the office.. So I suppose this email is just in case the office internet is down when we get in. Speaking of office internet.. we're supposed to get fiber internet by October. Stoked!

It's been a busy busy week. We've gone hunting for apartments in the jungle that is Cabuyao (not at all a jungle.. a giant city that sprawls the northwest part of our mission. unfortunately, there are NO apartments for rent in the whole world right now!), we went shopping, and got to drive with pres. I do love this work, especially when we get to go out and work! 

I've got little time here.. but I'll try and get those journals out tonight. I'm grateful for my Savior. I know He lives. I love Him so much, I have given my all to serve him. He is my Savior. He is my Redeemer. I will follow Him.


Elder Brown

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Elder Bednar

Howdy Team!

Sorry no card reader.. That just means double journals next week again. Anyways here's a few thoughts from the week:

My companion is awesome. I think I've finally, after how many companions, really learned how to be a companion. And that has been such a blessing to my companionship's the last 8 months or so. We worked SO hard this week. I mean we really gave our 100%. That feels so good.

Our teaching is becoming really powerful. Everything is really coming together.. All of the things I've learned in the last 20 months just make so much sense now, it's like we've been flying above the clouds. Elder Bednar helped a lot there.

About Elder Bednar, he is so great.. He, his wife, Elder Teh and Elder Valdez of the seventy, and Bishop Davies of the Presiding Bishopric and their wives all came to speak to our mission this last Saturday. I don't know that I will ever have such an opportunity again, such a blessing. He is truly a master teacher. He asked that we keep the exact words said there personal.. not because its a secret, but because we might not transmit the message exactly as he meant it. So I will share a few things that I learned this last Saturday. I wrote a few in my journal, too. You'll see that next week. One thing I really liked was his method of studying the Book of Mormon. He invited us, many times, to read from it. And so I have applied that method. I took a brand new, cheap copy of the book (the one we have hundreds of downstairs), and started with a topic. I want to know more about the atonement. As I read, I will highlight or take note of all the aspects of the atonement I see. I'm seven chapters in and learned more about the atonement than I have in a whole month before. 

The whole time he taught there was a prevalent theme of working with our brothers and sisters as AGENTS, and not OBJECTS. When we 'get' an investigator to church, we treat them as objects. When we 'invite' them to witness the ordinance of the sacrament, to feel God's love at His Church, we treat them as agents. Elder Bednar truly taught us as agents last Saturday. We can learn a lot about agency and agents from Lehi's teaching in 2 Nephi 2.

We did our best to apply this right after the meeting when we went to teach the Zamudio family. Sister and the kids have all been baptized this last year, so we are working with Brother now. His face lit up as we taught him the doctrine of baptism, not as an object that we would pour doctrine upon, but as an agent that we lead to discover the truth for himself. I see true potential and know the truth of this teaching method. 

Oh, my dear family, how I love the Lord. The greatest blessing I have felt in this service is a change of heart--my own heart--away from self and to the Savior. Being in His service brings the greatest joy. This applies to me and my brother as missionaries, it applies to my mother and father, it applies to all of us. May we all find this joy and feel the changing power of the atonement in our lives. Love,

Elder Brown