I didn't get quite as much journal writing in as hoped for.. so I will try to make up a little with some pictures and a good email. We've been SO busy this week! This was my last transfer week.. kinda a weird feeling, really. My good friend and once companion Elder DeYoung went home! Which means I am next. Interesting how that works. Anyways they came in Sunday evening (all the outgoing), we had the normal to-do with them. I guess I'll write it out now so you've got an idea of what will happen. We all eat dinner together Sunday evening, and then President conducts the final interviews. That is always a very good experience from what I have heard. We get some rest, play bball in the morning, and then Monday is a day at the Employment Resource Center. Here Sisters Montague and Walker (senior sister missionaries--so great) teach about job interviews, resumes, all that good stuff. We get to send a quick email home.. very quick, we go home two days later.. and then we have the outgoing Family Home Evening. I've attended two of these now, they are powerful. Each missionary gets to bear a final testimony and President and Sister give some last words of truth. We all wake up for some more bball Tuesday morning, we eat breakfast, and get shipped off to Manila on a bus (busses and jeepneys are always passing by the highway we live next to). In Manila they go to the temple, can visit other sites, sleep at the Airport Hotel, and fly home the next morning.
This transfer week seemed extra busy. Lots of stuff came up.. like missionaries forgetting luggage at the mission home.. moving the Packer's upstairs with us (they used to live in San Pablo.. 30 min away.. now they live next door!)... oh! and one of the larger holidays in the Philippines lined up perfectly to hold us up in the world's greatest traffic! ha. sorta. The day of the dead (nov 1) is pretty big here. Everyone goes to the cemeteries and hangs out with their loved ones that have gone ahead, they drink and do all sorts of stuff I really know nothing about. We stay clear of that. Transfers was just really busy this week.
Then to top it all off, Sister Packer called us Saturday and said, "I've got a bunch of burger patties [from America], would you like to buy buns so we can eat them on Sunday?" YES I WOULD SISTER!!! So we did. Thanks mom and dad for teaching me to be a grill master, I cooked all those patties for us, the APs, the new Alaminos elders, the Packers, and President and Sister Peterson. Better than Jollibee, Macdo, and even Burger King. So tasty! If only we had Jack Daniel's sauce from TGI Fridays.
So that covers the subject line ^^.
We're doing really well. Surprise! Elder Delos Santos and I will work together until I leave! We have already been companions for the normal two transfers (three months), and President felt we should stick together for the last transfer. He'll be my second 4month-companion. Elder Miranda was the first. That's a long time to be with one person, but we really do enjoy working together. I'm happy about this. There is still much for us to learn together, and the experiences we have shared are truly memorable.
I would like to share one that happened last night. We were walking to teach brother Fernando and sister Sheryl and their family, when we saw them ride away on a motor[cycle]. They promised they'd be back soon, so we walked down the street a few houses and knocked on the big pink house. Knocking on big houses is sometimes frightening, but we do it. And so we did. "TAO POOOO!" That's how you 'knock' on a door. Yell, "TAO POOOO!" A young man turned around and asked, "bakit po? (why?)" We explained we were missionaries and had a message for them, from Jesus Christ. His mother, Sister Precy, came out and entertained us very well. She seemed somewhat interested, and the Spirit was there. She invited us to return on Tuesday around the same time, and promised to bring one of her friends that lives next door. This friend sounds very promising! The friend has read over half the Book of Mormon (daw) and was taught by missionaries in the past. We are excited to return and teach them more about the Gospel. These experiences are blessings. Our companionship has been filled with them, and we are excited to work together for another transfer.
Have I told you how much I love the Obrado Family? I wish I could take them home with me I love them so much! And I am grateful that such a humble, true family lives here in this ward to bless the people of Alaminos. I think I'll send their picture again. Anyways, they continue to progress. Sister is one of the few active visiting teachers, and is blessed with experiences similar to the one I told of above. Brother has some things to work through, but he is repentant and now understands that nothing, nothing at all is more important than securing his family's eternal potential through the ordinances of the temple.
OK I'm out of time. I love y'alls, and yes I am very excited for the coming weeks I have as a missionary. Love,
Elder Trevor Todd Brown
1. We walked on that little cement wall between the irrigation and rice field for about a mile to get to an investigator in calauan that my companion interviewed for baptism. It was hot, hence the bandana. Live long and prosper!
2. This picture might be best with a made up story. I think I was trying to call down lightning to strike a rebellious tree in the path. But really I saw that beautiful area driving to Lucban last week and decided I had to have a picture, and in the real picture of me just smiling I closed my eyes. This is the next best one.
3. I think I have a problem with sleeping happily through pictures, cause this is the best of our district last transfer. Ha.
4. I included the Obrado Family at full image size. It's worth it. Likely my favorite picture, ever (: