Sunday, December 30, 2012

Makeup 7 12

Howdy Team. It's been quite the week here in sunny Calapan. We've experienced flash rain storms, intense sun, about 564 hours of travel, and have had such a good time! On Wednesday morning Elder Navarro called me at 6:33am (good thing I was up at 6:30!) and announced that my companion, Elder Pascua, would be transferred the following day. I guess they're going for the element of surprise in transfers nowadays and we won't know until the day before. Anyways we were kinda bummed cause we were having such a good time together, but orders are orders. All said and done, we left our house Thursday morning, had district meeting, traveled to mainland, and were home Friday night with almost half of our zone replaced. My companion is Elder Caubalejo.. pronounce it like you would if it were Spanish. He's an extremely hard worker, has had a huge learning experience in a super difficult area right before this, and is now ready to step up as an effective zone leader. We're excited about the whole thing and have been happy so far. 

As for our loved ones here in Calapan, we've seen good reactions to the switch in missionaries. The Ordanza family finally made it back to church. Brother was all fired up to read the book of mormon after we taught about the atonement from alma 34. We met another familiy, Cunanan, who has been inactive for 8 years. Even so, brother was glad to receive us and expressed his desire to come back to the fold. The story was similar for the Sarsona family. I have felt very good teaching these three families.. they will be our focus in the coming weeks as we hurry to the rescue. We are also looking diligently for new investigators.. talking to absolutely everyone we can. I love this work so much! I love y'alls dearly. I love our Savior.


Elder Brown

Mother!! I sent shane more info. I'll think of other things he'll need this week. For things I need.. well do you still have my teeth whitening kit? the trays that were in the green container? if you could send those with some gels that would be outstanding.. i want to be all ready when I get home to be at BYU again ;) also can you let me know what shane is leaving in the clothing department? I assume I get to wear some of that stuffs.. or at least have something to wear when I get home! Yes I can absolutely buy some clothings here for cheap.. thank you for the extra $50 last june i just noticed that was there! I spent a good amount of money this last month on getting my tagalog scriptures rebound with a rad personal case (that's all I really want as far as souvenirs go.. it'll be done in august and i'll send a picture:). Do you think you could research a little bit on scholarships for me? If there's any rich people out there in the world who want to pay for a poor RM who's all stoked about life and studying.. that's who we need to apply with! hah. Oh! If you could send a couple ties.. cheap ones from DI or something.. that would be cool. I keep giving them away to less actives and recent converts.. 

ok love you lots mother! thank you thank you for everything (: i love you,


This week has been one full of grace, and blessings. I love the Lord, seek His arms of safety and His goodness. I'm super glad I wrote lots of journals this week cause I've got no time for email! I feel like internet time gets shorter and shorter.. and that's cause it does.. we just got home from helping the Pola elders move to a new apartment (they live 2 hours from us).. I got my haircut.. ate some food and here we are! Anyways I didn't get to write last night. If I did, it would have gone something like this:

The Sarsona family came to church!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

That was awesome. We got to the chapel at about 8:15 (sac at 9) and waited outside for investigators and less active members to greet. 8:55am rolled around and they were no where to be seen! Then about 8:59am the Ferreol family arrived (we asked them to drop by the Sarsona's house to invite them early), but no Sarsonas to be seen. We were pretty bummed, but understood they must have had something come up or maybe it just wasn't time yet. We walked up the stairs to the chapel, waited an extra moment, and walked in. Seated in the back right of the chapel were, you guessed it, Brother and Sister Sarsona! For the first time in maybe 15 years they made it back to the Church, partook of the sacrament, felt the redeeming love of our Savior, and were blessed with His Spirit. It was special to see their smiles throughout the whole three hours, and they were excited for us to continue to teach them. These are the parents of Brother Efren, whom we hope will be helped by his parents being active in the Church. We're actually about to leave to teach them right now about the Plan of Salvation. 

We've met so many people this week, set many return appointments, and are looking forward to see who will truly progress in the Gospel and towards our Savior. I do love these people so much. I don't feel I am a foreigner here anymore. Missionary life is real life, and I haven't just accepted that but truly let it become me. This is the greatest work, which brings the greatest blessings to both those teaching and those receiving. 


Elder Brown

PS shout out to Elder Hill, who gets released this week and has continued to lift me through his emails over the past year and a half. Love you Scott, FTSM!!

My mother! It must be hard/exciting/spiritually awesome to see another Elder Brown suit the nametag and walk as a representative of our Savior. I do love you lots (: To be honest this week has been so so awesome and I have been so lifted by our work that going home in six months just doesn't seem real anymore. I love this work! I am blessed each day I serve and am willing to do so as long as the Master calls! But that will most likely only be till december 12 ;D Thanks for the ties (: about the bleach.. that's just the thing.. I don't know who I'm getting ready for.. so it's all more important that I'm ready! haha. Don't worry I will fill you in on all the details when I have details to share, just like my service here as a missionary! 

Spiritual thought just for you (and dad)!
This week I read Helaman 5 and one day hope to be able to teach it to brother Randy, one of the guys I met last friday night. He is looking for guidance and peace in his young life (25 yrs old). When Nephi and Lehi were in the prison, all those present (except them) were overshadowed by thick darkness, so severe as to depress the soul. I suppose all of us have felt something like this when pressed by sin and trials in our lives. It just destroys hope. Good thing Aminadab was there to teach the 300 what to do to get rid of the darkness. Pray until we have faith, and then when we have a little faith, act on it by repenting and following God. That dispels the mist and invites the Holy Ghost to wisper to us, "peace, peace be unto you for your faith in [Jesus Christ]."

Love you mama! Elder Brown

Important Makeup 5 7 12 Kenneth 6 11

mother! I am so glad you got the package! sorry i couldn't get something quite as cool as a howdy belt.. i don't know if something more fit to us brown boys exists! I'll think of something more cool for you and sis in december (: 

go sis! did you guys by chance get a video of her? i wanna see my sis in action! 

my week has been good, with an awesome awesome baptism. jhon-saint. you'll get to read all about it in the journal! sorry too for the journal pics they're kinda weird today a little harder to read. 

ahh mama i get to stay in my area!! i honestly had 3 nightmares in a row last friday night that i was going to be transferred. i love this area so much.. this branch is the best. it's not exactly the best on leadership but we're working with president julao to help him get it together.. but the members are unreal. so much fun, so helpful, just awesome. then of course my beach house and truck ;) i'm so glad i get to stay!!! 

love you so much!

MOTHER! I'm doing really really well. so so healthy and grateful for it. I have no time right now!! we just stopped at internet to report to pres and we have to go straight to FHE right now.. I'm going to try to get pictures in a second for the group email. For the call!! I'm really excited too. Here's what's up. So I think I'll be transferred next week... which means monday will be my last pday in this area.. i don't even want to go into how much i love this place and am bummed to leave it..i'll save it for next week.. but long story short i want to play basketball with the members early in the morning so i won't call until 7:00pm your time. is that ok? I hope so cause by the time I get your response i'll be calling you!! I love you so much mama! thank you for the extra support (: I am eating better right now. we're trying to buy more fruits and stuff. Anyways just plan for around 7:00pm. I'll call you first and we'll talk for a while and then I'll check in with dad for a few minutes. I love you,

Elder Brown
I don't know if anyone asks if I'm still alive... but the answer is YES. Alive and well, thank you. No journals today kc I left the camera at home.. and if we're being honest I didn't get time to write too much this week. We've been busy working till the very last minutes before curfew and then running back and planning, showering, cleaning toes and going to bed. Not to mention eating if we haven't eaten before getting home. Speaking of eating, my companion is a great cook. Like, really really good. That's pretty much every missionary's dream come true! mm. 

On the work side of the updates.. we finally got to see Efren at church yesterday! That was super cool. The YSAs his age accepted him well and they were crackin' jokes and laughing before long. Again, every missionary's dream come true. This week we will hold a baptismal service for King, Fil, and Janice. King and Fil are 13+12 years old, respectively, sons of a single mother who was recently baptized. They have a true innocence about them that is beautiful to see. Janice is an investigator that the sisters have been teaching. Still way cool to have sisters serving in our branch, as well as the senior couple Campbells.

I am so stoked for Shane to join me here. What a tender mercy for two brothers to get to serve in the same area, come to love the same culture and same people. I read his emails every week and just feel his excitement and testimony. Serve with all your heart, might, mind and strength brother. Same goes to all those preparing to serve, you are preparing for the most rewarding two years of your lives(so far).


Elder Brown

PS Happy fathers day next week.. Apparently y'alls celebrate father's day a week later than we do here?

makeup 3 25 12

Another crazy fast week has slipped by.. and jeepers this keyboard is impossible to type on. Ha. We had a great trip to Lucena for zone conference and worked hard to make up for lost time from that. Jhon Saint will be baptized on the 31st! I'm stoked for all this. Plus, Christmas came, again! A million thank yous to my mom, gong gong, nana, and aunt alli! You're all amazing (: Thank you thank you thank you!


Elder Brown

PS the extra pic is my old companion, Elder Guba, and Mariel! Remember her? Well she got baptized after I left and they sent me a picture!
Sorry about the bad lighting. Wow I just looked at it again its hardly visible.. I'll try to send it again next week!
Mother! My week has been good. I have learned so much about myself and how I can more enter the presence of God on my mission.. and I don't mean just by going to the other side, but making sure that I am always in the presence of the Holy Ghost. He is, indeed, a God and a member of our Godhead! My mission president taught us about that this week at zone con, I loved it. It will require more change and progression on my part, and in turn will let me bring others into His presence as I teach. I love that!

General conference already?? That means next week is the real deal, and we will get to watch it the week after. Cool cool. I'm really excited for it.. We can better prepare to be taught by studying the previous conference. I have read the last 5 years or so of conferences out here because the magazines get stocked up in our apartments haha.
I love conference.

Shane is one week closer to being here! I am still super happy for him. I will beg my pres to let me see him when he gets here.. our secret though I don't want him to plan on it cause it's not for sure!

I got your package! Thank you (: for some reason one hot chocolate got opened and evenly distributed among all the other contents haha. I think they thought you were sneaking my cocaine or something.. no problem though! I loved it. The new cds are great.

How is the new house and work and ward and everything? Love you lots.


happy anniversary (:
Thank you mom and dad for keeping our family safe and loving us for the last 24 years. Shane Sis and I did nothing to deserve this in this life, but because of you we were blessed to be born into an eternal family with eternal standards and we will all reap the joy of eternal life. Thank you! I love you!

Elder Brown

PS Hopefully you get my box I sent in the next week.. should have been there by now but nothing to worry about.. it has happy anniversary words in there too. Anyways love ya two. 
mother! I am so glad you got the package! sorry i couldn't get something quite as cool as a howdy belt.. i don't know if something more fit to us brown boys exists! I'll think of something more cool for you and sis in december (: 

go sis! did you guys by chance get a video of her? i wanna see my sis in action! 

my week has been good, with an awesome awesome baptism. jhon-saint. you'll get to read all about it in the journal! sorry too for the journal pics they're kinda weird today a little harder to read. 

ahh mama i get to stay in my area!! i honestly had 3 nightmares in a row last friday night that i was going to be transferred. i love this area so much.. this branch is the best. it's not exactly the best on leadership but we're working with president julao to help him get it together.. but the members are unreal. so much fun, so helpful, just awesome. then of course my beach house and truck ;) i'm so glad i get to stay!!! 

love you so much!

Make Up 3 12 12

Welp. That about says it, friends. My brother is going to the best place in the whole world. Words cannot describe my joy and stoke for him. AHH my brother is going to the Philippines!! 

All is well on this side of the world. We just got back from a great pday on the islands again! Read the journals. I fell asleep writing a lot this week.. I was tired ha.

Hey, I'm happy. I love this work. I love you.

Elder Brown

Make Up Feb 12

Mother! This week was alright.. still working and all of course but for some reason it just seamed more difficult than some weeks. Honesty right? haha. But don't worry about me! You know I can get through anything! I decided to stop tanning on pdays.. mostly because its so flippin hot here that if I get burned it makes me too hot the rest of the week! I definitely can get my toes wet!! Well the handbook says no swimming. So I take that to mean toes are just fine. haha. the water is sooo nice here! I want to come back one day as Trevor and not Elder Brown just to play in the water and hang with my peoples. But for now, work is good and work is what I"ll do. Madriaga family is still progressing, we're definitely helping them lots right now. Unfortunately the mom and her oldest daughter (Chrislyn) went back to Manila this week.. that's where Chrislyn works and lives.. the mom is gonna help her raise her newborn baby for a year so I don't know how soon they'll get to go.. I just know they will. And we're not allowed to give money right now.. but when I get home if they are ready I'll definitely help them get there. That goes for pretty much all my peoples that want to get to the temple.

Shane gets his call this week???!?? That's nutty!! I know you want to be there... Some kids did the skype thing when I was at school.. it worked well, but you won't get to hug him after or do a special mother son talk.. if you can find an excuse to be up there (ie visit nana and company), DO IT (: and make sure he gets a video and sends it to me!! I want to hear him read it, so don't spoil the surprise with emails! I'll go straight to the video when I get on next week.

Typical Colemans to get to meet whoever is playing!! Ha they are so rad. Nice work! 

Love you mama!!

Elder Brown

PS all I could think about in sunday school yesterday was living walking distance from Oso Jack and curly fries... I approve of the move! 

What a week. I started on my 3rd mission journal, we just became a three-some until Friday, and we started working with two more less-active families! Neither Elder Miranda nor myself is getting transferred, which means we'll be together another 6 weeks! After 12 weeks with him, we've grown pretty close and are excited to continue to work together. I love you! Your missionary in the Philippines,


Howdy Team,

Glad you like the journals, there's more coming this week. Dad, the little symbols on the bottom are sorta personal key indicators.. From the inside of the page, going out, they mean... Overall Happiness Level for the day (1-10;) One Scripture that I studied well that day; if there are weird words, those are my New Tagalog Vocab; next one is a little box with squiggles, that's if I had Personal Study; smiley face if I Exercised, and the last one is and overall did I do the day right smiley face. They're personal.. no one is asked to keep track of those things, but they keep me on track.

We're on exchanges again, this time with the Torrijos elders.. I'm in their internet shop, with a giant garage door type entrance, and mosquitoes are the enemy. I'm doing good! I love you all! Thank you for the support, love,

Elder Brown 

Makeup 1 15 12 Answers and Rescue Mission

Howdy Team! My mother wrote a great little thing in her email.. so I thought I'd include it. She hit the nail on the head for my doings this week.

So how was your week, Zone leader duties. Members?  Fish dinners?  Smile  and laugh:)?   Brown outs, truck driving, lessons. Members at church, talks:). How many members usually come to church?  Is it one branch or more on the island?  Well give me some stories. Ok:)

Isn't my mom the best? My week was good. Members fed us fish dinners (we actually just finished a fish lunch at a members before we came here;) 1 I still smile and laugh. You should too, it's healthy. Brown outs are a regular thing but Elder Brown is always here. Ha. Punny. We drove the truck a lot this week. More on that later. We taught an amazing lesson to Jodel this week. More on that later, too. Our branch usually has around 50 coming to church, the second strongest of the five branches on the island. We make up one district. Stories to come (:

So.. yeah.. Zone Leader duties.. when we got back from ZLC last week the truck's transmission was acting funny.. got it checked up and the oil seal was broken so it had been leaking. Which meant we had to go back to the mainland last week to get it fixed. Three days, gone. We did, however, get to go to transfer day and take the new missionaries back to the island.. a cool thing for them because being driven by me is way more fun than taking a bus, two tricycles, boat, and two jeeps. Bad news was it was going to cost an arm and two legs to get it fixed at the Ford dealership, so President just sent me to get it done at the cheap, sketchy mechanic on the island anyways. Saturday we drove around the island taking people home and conducting a baptismal interview, then another fish dinner at a members. Good thing I like fish (:

With all this talk about fish.. you might be hungry. Go grab yourself a nice 1/2 pound fish and grill it. Get lime juice, soy sauce, onions (red), and sili (spicy little peppers). Mix up everything but the fish. Same proportions (except the sili.. that would be nutso. Just a few spicy peppers). Cook some rice. Set out a large plate of rice, the grilled fish, the sauce mix, and a large banana leaf. Eat!

For actual missionary work.. well, we didn't have much time this week. I don't like when that happens, but it does sometimes and I can't avoid it. Jodel is way cool though. He's 21, his mom and sister are members, and for the last few weeks we've been working with him to quit smoking and drinking. I am so grateful to have never had a problem with those things.. I see his struggle with turning down friends and old habits. But more so, I am grateful for repentance and the ability to change that is within us all. No matter what we have gotten ourselves into, we can get out. And we must, now. We sat with him on Tuesday night and one of the best things of the mission happened again. I was prompted to offer a promise in the name of our Savior. When Jodel finally fights with all he has against temptation, and succeeds for an undefined period of time, the Spirit of our Lord will testify to him of the truth of the Word of Wisdom, Joseph Smith, this Church, and Jesus Christ Himself. Then we prayed, asked for help, and left. Those moments make everything so good. Even though we didn't have much time to be proselyting this week, we were still blessed immeasurably with the Spirit. Even if it means I have to be the soccer mom for a season, I absolutely love this work.

I was reading in Alma for personal study this week and Chapter 31 really hit me. Alma and his brethren are to reclaim the lost Zoramites. It is something of a "Rescue Mission". While the Zoramites are generally much more wicked than those I encounter, I felt the power of Alma's prayer. Verses 32-35 are especially great. May the spirit of God be found with you and I this day, that is my prayer. I love my Savior, I love you.

Elder Brown

1 Did anyone notice that?? It was one of those smiley things that happens in the scriptures and I didn't even plan it! Cool. Grammar is awesome.

Makeup ZLC Less Actives and Elder Miranda's Cooking

I don't know where to start this week.. This is going to end up being me just rambling off as much as I can so I can stick in the time limit.. Hope that's OK with y'alls. It's been a while since you got a nice look in my brain.

First things first.. last Thursday and Friday we had to kick off the island again for ZLC. Can I just say that ZLC (Zone Leader's Council) is one of the best things ever? I think I mentioned that after my first pagpunta doon. Ah! Tagalog slipped out. Don't worry. You'll still understand most of this. This transfer the focus is still with Less Actives.. but there is a real big push on missionaries upping their game on obedience. Some stuff about making sure we include our "heart and mind" when we give all our might and strength. Pretty cool. All we really have to give to the Lord is our heart and mind. Absolutely everything else in this world that we think we have, is already His; it was all given to us. The only thing we can really give to Him is our agency, and when we do that He will make us great. So.. that was cool. The Spirit is always so strong there. President Peterson is the best.

Second.. My comp is so great. Elder Miranda. I don't thing I have said much about him.. but that's the guy you see in the picture there. We get along famously: he's loud and screams when the house gets quiet; he cooks, I do dishes; we share ties. PS Mom he loved the one you sent for Christmas, thanks! I'm actually wearing that one in the picture haha. And he's wearing one of mine in that picture. A sign of good companionship unity I guess. He's from Tarlac, speaks Ilocano, and is 4 months ahead in the mission, 2 months older than me in real life. He's just as tall as me if not taller.. the picture is madaya. He's a super good at building relationships with the investigators / members. We are having a blast.

Third.. The "Rescue Mission" is going alright. I think many of the people that came to church last week did so because it was New Years.. But we're working hard. I think it's going to take more than just visits. We need to focus more on helping them receive a deeper conversion before focusing on getting them to church.. otherwise I don't see anything happening but them falling away with the same level of conversion that they had before. More to come on that...

Welp, I love y'alls lots. Take care. You're in my prayers.

Elder Brown

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Last Week

My dear team,

Time is very limited. I hope to be able to send a good email before we get started with the last family home evening with president, but in case i dont, i thought i'd send this. I can't possibly describe the things i feel right now. Nothing quite feels real anymore. 

Last night te outgoing missionaries came into the mission home for dinner and an exit interview. Elder Glenn and I skipped the interview (not really.. We got permission to have it tonight), and went out to teach together. Imagine that! We started the mission together and we finished the mission together. It was a wonderful teaching experience, and the same Spirit that has guided us for two years was manifest last night.

We had a career workshop today, and stopped by SM to grb some last things. I'm typing on a sample iPhone at the cell phone store.. Feels interesting after two years.

I love you team. I'll write a good journal entry tonight and email it out when I get home. Thank you for your loving support and encouragement. 


Elder Trevor Todd Brown

Last week and return to Beach House Marandugue

My dear family,

A few more thoughts for the email. So much good happened this week:

1. Marinduque. A really, really good tradition has sorta sprung up in the Philippines San Pablo mission. On one of their last Sundays in the field, missionaries are often granted permission to go to church in an area they loved. A few weeks ago I walked into President's office and sat down, fumbling for words as I said, "President.. I have a request." He responded sorta jokingly, "No, elder, you cannot go to Naga Mission." haha. We laughed, and I asked if I could go to Marinduque even though it is pretty far away. He responded something like, "Absolutely YES. I think it is a great thing to go back to an area. I am 100% supportive of that, elder." So we went. 

We left on Saturday morning from the office around 8:30am. Pretty much everything that happened from that moment until 3:30pm when we got home today was a miracle. We caught just the right bus direct to the port, got on the right boat and started the journey. The ZLs there (Elder Guyer and Orro) picked us up from the port and ate with us at Brother Noel's restaurant in Boac. We eventually made it back to Gasan and started the weekend. I think the feeling I felt as we drove around the island was very.. normal. I just felt like I was at home again. Until we rolled up to the church! It happened to be institute time and a few leaders were there with the YSA and youth. Those faces were priceless when I saw them and they saw me and we had a happy reunion. 

Even better was the visit to my families. We visited the following families this weekend: Mogol, Madriaga, Salvacion, Luci, Sotto, Julao. I really do love these members. You remember the Madriaga family, right? They were my first "completed family" for the year. They haven't quite made it to the temple, but continue to progress in the Gospel. We talked about their goals as a family and I felt inspired to set a new goal with them for the temple. June 2013. Brother just accepted a new calling. That is so good! Meeting with these saints was precious time. Time, in fact, seemed to stand still as we discussed their progression and desires, and the Gospel. The Spirit was upon us and with us, and it felt good. 

I was having second thoughts on Friday if I would go, thinking that I might be needed here in Alaminos. President's words, however, reassured me of the great blessing it would be to me and to the members in Gasan. And what a blessing it was! Nothing could have been better than to see them continuing in the paths of righteousness.

2. Mission Tour. Elder Ardern of the Quorum of the Seventy visited our mission for the week. That was a very special experience as well, for we were invited to eat with him and President on Tuesday evening before the zone conferences started. He is very personable, and is always teaching. I believe he is one of the master teachers. I have notes written, but will not send them at this time.

I guess that's all for now.. We're pretty busy this week. We are moving 2 sets of sisters to new apartments, going apartment hunting, have new missionary training and zone leaders' council, and that's just in our free time. I hope to be able to teach a lot. I love teaching. Maybe we can teach each other next week, it is a great way to stay in tune with the Gospel. The Gospel is true. It is found in this, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. We are led by a prophet of God. God has a plan for us, and He loves us. His Son is Jesus Christ, our Savior.

I love you all,

Elder Trevor Todd Brown

ps, i was admittedly not as diligent at getting pictures this weekend. It wasn't really on the top of my priority list, I was too absorbed in being with the people I love. Luckily my companion took a few pictures for us. These are from his camera.

  1. I have blessed two babies in Gasan Branch (one is the one on the left), and helped in the blessing of the other baby in this pic. Also with us is Kenneth, my last baptism there.
  2. The members after Church. Most had already gone home before I realized a picture would be nice.
  3. BROTHER NOEL! He is a really good friend.
  4. Madriaga family. I blessed their granddaughter (not pictured, but in the room).
  5. My companion at the house. I wanted a picture of the house.. It was the dream.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Philippine Thanksgiving

My dear team, HOWDY!!

What a week it has been. Two highlights will do, I think.

1. Sister Obrado. You've met her and her family. Well this week the Alaminos Ward held a temple trip (wards often do here.. every other month or so). She was interviewed by Bishop and the Stake President, and was found worthy to enter the temple and receive her endowments! That was a shock to hear on Sunday last week, but the Stake President surely came and gave her a recommend. That's a first for my mission.. to see my converts or less actives get to the temple. What a blessing. 

She spoke with us Sunday night. The Bishop had asked her to prepare her financial means for the trip (bus ticket, food, garments). I don't know how much to share, but this I will. They were hungry that Sunday because she had been faithful and paid tithing. I have not seen such faith among any of the people we teach as I have in Sister Obrado. We met with her on Saturday and she just had a rich glow about her. This is repentance! This is the plan! For every son and daughter of God to make it back to His Temple and have His Spirit endowed upon them!

2. We spent Thanksgiving with President and the senior couples of the mission. Twenty of us met up at the Manila American Cemetery to remember the lives of men who served our countries (USA + Philippines). I can't describe this one in words either. The grounds have a sacred, holy feel to them. The Spirit of the Lord has sanctified that cemetery. There lie the bodies of over 17,000 servicemen. All of a sudden the world seemed to stop, and my heart seemed to burst. It all became so real... The lives they sacrificed, the wars of the world, the war we fight now in the mission field; it all became real and I understood the plan. 

Sister Wagner commented that it helped her understand the wars in the Book of Mormon, and I gained that understanding as well. It is all real. The Book is true. Though we were only in the midst of 17K, I could feel the truth of the millions of lives the Book of Mormon speaks of. That feeling translated to the billions of lives that need to have the truth, and we are fighting for their lives. What an honor to serve in this army. 

3. OK so there are three highlights. Remember a couple weeks ago when we got punted hardcore right before Church? Well, we finally got to teach the father of that family on Saturday, and yesterday morning HE SHOWED UP FOR CHURCH!! That was incredible. Thanks be to my Lord for hearing my prayers and softening his heart. Without doubt the Lord had also heard the prayers of the man's wife and kids as they desperately desired for him to return. The process has started: we will continue to work with him; there is much repenting to do, but it can be done; he will return to the temple hand in hand with his beautiful wife and family. There is nothing better!

I love you, my family. I really, really do. I cannot describe the joy I have felt in seeing your pictures this week, looking into those mature faces and realizing that we will one day be reunited. Again, I feel the truth of the plan. This reunion is only to bridge a two year gap, but the reunion we will have with our loved ones that have gone ahead will be so much more joyous. I've got a bit of time still appointed me, it's time to get back out to work! 

Love, your son and brother,

Elder Trevor Todd Brown

PS. Pictures to come.. later tonight. Promise (:
Hey family. We made it back from a good list of errands. I'm glad that I have attained the necessary Filipino Driving Skills (FDS) to make those errands.. If y'alls could just see the streets here it makes Need For Speed look like driving school. haha. Anyways the pictures:
1.     Cemetery. Left to right, Elders: Eyre, Navarro, Delos Santos, Brown.
2.     Immaculate.
3.     It was a pretty solemn place.. hence the face.
4.     Beautiful grounds.
5.     Again, beautiful grounds.
6.     Picture from baptism two weeks ago. The little one by me is Lynsie Obrado.
7.     Remembering the Browns. Do we have anyone on that list? The list on the army side of the cemetery was double that number of Browns.
Love y'alls!

Elder Trevor Todd Brown