Monday, April 30, 2012

April 29, 2012 - A new transfer, a new start, a new adventure…

Dear Mom and Dad and family,

This week has been quite interesting, and by week I mean since Wednesday when I found out Elder Peralta (my trainer) was getting transferred in the middle of our 12 week training program.  I was having a lot of anxieties about a new companion and how things are going to go with me leading the area and introducing him to all of the people we teach.  So, things have been a bit stressful for me.  Then, came transfer day.  We woke up early so that we could take a taxi to the Mission Office building on Aurora Blvd. in Quezon City.  Early in the morning, we made sure Elder Peralta and Elder Galingana had all of their suitcases packed and ready to go, then we headed off.  Once we got there, there were a few missionaries but then came a ton more missionaries from several other jeepneys from all of the other Zones.  I was able to see Sister Curtis, a sister who was in my batch (means we were in the MTC at the same time and got to the PHI at the same time too), and we caught up for a bit about how much we've learned and changed since we got here.  And many other missionaries I knew.

When everyone arrived, we had a testimony meeting of those who are leaving next transfer.  I was able to hear my Zone leader, Elder S. speak.  The thing about Elder S…I heard that because he got “trunky” (missionaries who get homesick and want to pack his trunk (stuff) and go home)the last 3 transfers, he's lost his Tagalog.  So, when I heard him speak it was not too much of a great testimony and it was all in English too.  So, I felt sad for him because of what happened.  But there were many missionaries who gave great testimonies and so that showed me the two kinds of missionaries I could become.  Trunky, like Elder S., or amazing with a mighty change of heart like Elder Davis.  I'm going to be the amazing one.  I'm going to do my best here and rely on the Lord in where I lack, which is in a lot of places. ^_^  I'm excited to see what I can become with the help of the Lord.  Ether 12:27 ^_^
“And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.”

After that came transfer announcements.  Here's the short of it. Elder Davis became a Zone Leader in another zone; Elder Peralta became a District Leader in Taguig. And now I'm companions with Elder Barrow who came from Taytay.  And Elder Hilbert got a companion from Antipolo Zone, Elder Ochavo. Cleanest elder I've ever met!!!!   AND!!!  Both new elders are great singers!!!  YAY!!  I can finally sing to relieve stress!!!  In our lessons that we've had recently, Elder Barrow and I began with a hymn. Iit really invites the Spirit and I love it!  I've been able to teach so much better like that. :)

My new companion/follow-up trainer, Elder Barrow, is from Midvale, Utah.  He's a ginger, he's been out for 7 months now, and he went to BYU for a year before his mission. Anyway, he's super legit!  Fluent in Tagalog and very obedient.  Like with Elder Davis, I've learned so much about the gospel and missionary work from him. We've had many great companionship studies and have had quite a few extremely powerful spiritual lessons with our investigators and less actives. We've been able to do much better with successful planning.  And our work has not only been efficient but our lessons are led by the Spirit and we've had such great lessons the last few days ^_^  I really do enjoy having him as a companion a lot.

Here are a few things we do differently as a companionship that I didn't do with my former companion:

-Plan specifically for each and every less-active and investigator.
-Pray specifically for them.
-Kneel when we pray.
-Try new things if it works.
- Evaluate after a lesson as we walk.
- Talk to each other.
- Bond.
- Sing a hymn to invite the Spirit before starting most lessons.
- Smile.
- Say hi to everyone we meet on the street (Magandang Hapon! and such).
- We role play seriously in order to receive spiritual revelation for our investigator.
- And much more!

I don't know, I guess just with these few changes I been able to notice that the lessons I teach have been so much better and led by the Spirit. To be honest, we've been punted a lot this week. (Punted: when appointment falls short.) But every day we've had a very spiritual lesson with someone.  I think it has to do with how we've been planning specifically now instead of winging it on lessons.

Leading the area after only 6 weeks was one of my biggest anxieties. But once we went out into the field, it felt like I was being given the remembrance of where people are and how to get there. It's been great!  Haha!  When we first met, Elder Barrow asked, “So, do you think you'll be able to lead the area after only 6 weeks?" and then I said, "You know, it's not about whether I can that really matters.  It's that the Lord needs me to so I'm going to do it!"  After I said that I realized how profound it actually was! So, I’ve actually been really okay with it and everything else has been fine.  We've been most everywhere now.  We  spent the first night trying to make sure Elder Barrow was informed about the area so that he doesn't walk around confused like me on my first week . So it's been a really great experience being the senior in the area.  And my Tagalog has been much better lately. I'm not sure how to describe it.  But I’ve been able to understand about 80% of what the people who are progressing are saying, and about 40% of what is said by the people who aren't progressing.  It's odd, really, but my teaching has also been a lot better.  I just need to pick it up with the language study and I’ll be fluent in no time!

Okay, I know you've been wondering so here is an outline of what a normal day of work is for us:

6:30 am - Wake up and prepare for the day
8:00 am - Personal study
9:00 am - Companionship study (2 hours because I'm still in the 12 week program)
11:00 am - Language study
12:00 pm - Lunch
1:00 pm - Go out and work (visit all the less actives and investigators we can)
6:00 pm - Dinner usually with a member's family
9:00 pm - Return home
10:30 pm - Bedtime

We'll that's my update for the week. I may make it more spiritual next week so you can all feel uplifted! ^_^

Until next time.  Remember that I love you and I pray for you.  Actually, I want to share an experience…

I was in personal study yesterday and was wondering how many people were actually supporting me while I'm out here.  And while I thought about this, I felt the weight of the many prayers of love and support upon my shoulders and I knew that it was a lot. The Lord allowed me to feel this so that He can help me press on in the work.  I'm grateful for all that you have done for me, especially my family! ^_^  I love you all.  Moroni 9:6 has been a great scripture for me this week.

                “And now, my beloved son, notwithstanding their hardness, let us labor diligently; for if we should cease to labor, we should be brought under condemnation; for we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the kingdom of God.”

Oh no, I haven't gotten your card yet...maybe next Monday. I got your letters, though.  And I got letters from Schmuki, Megan, Mariah, and Stacy! Megan's and Schmuki's were from a month ago! O.o  I'm so sad! Now, it'll take 2 weeks for my letters to get to them.  It's okay. haha. I'm just sad it'll take a month and a half for them to receive a reply because of snail mail. >.<  Man!  I have so much to write now. I'll refer them to my blog. Do you have the website address so I can send it to them?  Or, could you just do that for me?

And this is a quote by C.S. Lewis, edited and shared by Megan Carlson…

"I believe in the gospel, as I believe the sun rise.  Not only because I see it, but because by it, I can see everything else."

Remember again that if you give unto God your weakness, He will make you strong.  Trust in Him and He will lift you up!

Doing you Proud,
-Elder Froude

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

April 24, 2012 – I’m Here!

Hi!!!  Gosh, I miss you all so much!  So much has happened in this past week and I feel like I will not have enough time to write it all. For one, today was transfer announcements and my trainer, Elder Peralta, is getting transferred tomorrow!!!  Ahhh!!!!  I'm only half way through the 12 week program and I'm going to be leading the area now and be trained by another elder.

I'm honestly kinda stressed with the transfer coming up because a lot of people I’ve gotten to know and trust here in the zone are leaving.  With Elder Peralta leaving, now I have to lead the area with a new trainer who hasn't been to this area before or knows the people.  And since it's his last day here, we're struggling to contact everyone who cares about him, the Arduos and some other less actives, and meet with them tonight for a dinner/goodbye party.  It was very emotional earlier when I realized that these people that I’ve grown to trust and love are going to be leaving to another area, and I'm going to have to do the same thing sometime in the future.  Which means the hard time it took for me to start here will happen again and again and again throughout the mission.  So that kind of hit me.  My time here is short and I'm trying to do my best here but eventually I’ll have to say goodbye to them too.  But I told myself, “you know, change is part of life... and you're on a mission right now.  So no matter what comes in the next few days, weeks, months, it's all for your own good because Heavenly Father loves you.”  And so during closing prayer in district meeting I was a bit emotional about it.

But it's okay.... Today was my amazing exchange with Elder Davis; he’s my District Leader and he's very inspiring.  He's turned from a shy, no talk for 4 months missionary, to an amazing District Leader with great spiritual insights and fluent in Tagalog.  He and his family have been through a lot.  Let's just say he's made a 180 since his mission and is evidence that people that experience a mighty change of heart can grow and become great men in less than 2 years!  I mean, him being here now was a great test of his faith because so many things have happened to his father , health wise,  and such so it's been stressing him.  But his faith and service has kept his family strong and I respect him dearly for that.  Elder Davis loves talking and is happy, been out on the field for 20 months, has such great insights about the gospel and everything and talks about how great the mission is and all of the great elders and their great accomplishments with their priesthood and faith, how the mission is working, how it used to work, what can help me learn Tagalog, how he learned, tells great inspiring stories.  He's an Elder I can really respect out here :)  It's been great!  ^_^  But he's being transferred too!!!  >.<  Man!  I just started to get to know how awesome Elder Davis was too!   Anyway, I hope I have a companion like Elder Davis as my next trainer. I want an inspiring elder to train me so I can become better!

So a summary of my week since my last email: Thursday was Zone Conference, we were also with Antipolo Zone as well as the Mission home and we had many lessons from President and from the APs (Assistant to the Mission President) and the ZLs (Zone Leaders).  It was about how to begin teaching and teaching people, not lessons.

The principle of “teach people not lessons” is that missionaries now are instructed to find the needs and concerns of the investigator or less active and address it with scripture or with a lesson or part of a lesson of Preach My Gospel.  Too many times missionaries go in and teach lesson 1-3 and try to get the person baptized.  Now, we focus on solving their needs with the Spirit and with the Word of God.  Far more effective, if you ask me. :)

Then, how to engage an investigator or less active in your lesson so they are more interested.  I was edified throughout all of the Zone Conference.  For one, talking slow and clear is a great way for you to talk with His Spirit, and then to listen with your heart.  Listening is more powerful than talking (I know that.).

Friday was a normal working day; I’ll define that on Monday.

Saturday, we went with bishop to a difficult and shy less active to be able to convince her to come to church so she can be sealed with her dead husband but she still has yet to come.  Even after bishop gave a great lesson and testimony.

Sunday, we had church and went with our Ward Mission Leader to Rosemary Lane (the ghettoest part of our area) and he home taught some of our less actives...still not gone to church too. >.<   I’m beginning to run out of ways to help people come to church.  We've tried many ways.  But in the end it is their choice so I do what I can then perhaps they might decide to come back to church.

Monday was the day we went to a member's house in the next ward over, Elder Hilbert and Elder Galingana's ward, our housemates.  We cooked for the kids because one of them fell off a 3rd story building and the parents are at the hospital with him.  I've learned one lesson this day...Don’t have kids until you can provide for them.  Because this house has 6 kids and it was not a big house; there was chaos everywhere.  I don’t want to have kids until I have a nice stable job and can give them a good home... and clothes.  I want all of my kids to have clothes and air conditioning.

About me…I'm actually doing a lot better mentally.  I’ve learned to relax a bit, not take things super seriously and try to laugh whenever possible :)  My garments were giving me hives because of the soap I was using...that's the last time I buy the cheap stuff.  I've been eating and pooping better so that's also good :) I’m drinking way more water; I have 5 bottles in the fridge right now.

It's late so I need to go. I’m sorry this is short.  Don't worry… Monday I’ll have more time. I've been busy replying to mom and dad back and forth.  I love you all!

Doing you Proud,
-Elder Froude

PS… Don't try sleeping in or you'll wake up with a cockroach crawling up your leg!!!  Like me, 2 weeks ago!! AHHH!!!!  I did kill it with all my might just so you know.  ^_^   Love you all!!!  Mahal ko kayo!

Friday, April 20, 2012

April 18, 2012 - The end to one of the best weeks ever!

4:28 am
Re: Hello? 

I'm sorry, I forgot to tell you that we had temple day this week which means that pday is on Wednesday. And I’m so late emailing is because even though I want to email you at a specific time every week, the other elders have other plans >.<  I’m sorry.  But please don't worry, I'm okay and fine!  The temple was great!  I was so happy to be able to attend a session again and feel the spirit.  The celestial room was quite simple, to be honest, but the chandelier was grand, so that's okay :)  Anyway, I need to email my mission president first so that I can spend the rest of the time writing my long letter and emailing family okay?  Love you so much!

Doing you Proud,
-Elder Froude ^_^
First haircut in the PHI
"I don't care what your Daddy says, Christmas time is here!"  (SNL skit)

 5:16 am
Good news!

I received your package on Monday!!!  And by received, I mean it's probably been in the mission office for a week because we have mail run every 2 weeks so that might be why I haven't gotten it until now :) I love the snacks you put inside!  It's been two days and I've already been through a bag of nuts and 2 bags of Oreos haha!  I need to ration it more XD.  Don't worry I’m sharing.  Elder Hilbert loves Oreos, but my companion Elder Peralta hates anything sweet. He's so weird haha!  Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that I got it and everything is all good :)  Tomorrow is zone conference for us so that should be interesting.  I'm sorry you've all been waiting so long for my emails and they haven't come yet.  Next week will be the same.  Since it is transfer day next week Pday is Wednesday again, I think.  Anyway, I’ll do my best to be online while you're awake. okay? ^_^  Well, I’ll send the pictures and my long email now!  Thanks for the photos and letters… I love them all so much!!! ^_^

Some pictures of the river area that we serve...

Elder Hilbert and Bro. Arduo clowning around...
Found a Boy Scouts of America uniform...weird!  LOL!

6:10 am
Dear Mom, Dad, Ryan, and all else who may be reading,

So to continue on about Sister Alice, it has been an interesting week for her to say the least. Things have been harder for her now, more than ever!  She has a lack of support from her family with everything, she needs to move out of her place in 5 days, her baptism is in 4 days, she needs to work, she needs someone to watch her son while she works because her babysitter left, and she's feeling like she is about to become crushed under all of the pressure of the world.  Not to mention her friends are not too supportive of her getting baptized, even discouraging her at times.  She was even considering cancelling the baptism until she gets everything in order. Twice this week before the baptism, she had been texting us to come over so she can tell us what's going on and just vent.  Much like my experiences at the MTC with the tripanionship, all I needed to do was listen and let her talk the whole time. She would cry as she recounted her difficult past.  You could not creatively come up with a more difficult way to grow up in this world than the story I’ve heard from Sister Alice.  My heart felt for her and through the power of the Holy Ghost I was able to feel the compassion of the Lord for her.  When she finished venting and I knew the Lord wanted me to speak, I turned to the scriptures to give her counsel.  I went to a personal favorite scripture about why we suffer trials in life; why the Lord allows many painful things to occur to us in this life.  D&C 122:7;

“And if thou shouldst be cast into the pit, or into the hands of murderers, and the sentence of death passed upon thee; if thou be cast into the deep; if the billowing surge conspire against thee; if fierce winds become thine enemy; if the heavens gather blackness, and all the elements combine to hedge up the way; and above all, if the very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.”

I explained to her how Joseph Smith felt in Liberty Jail and the counsel the Lord had given him, and that God wanted to help her gain experience for something important later on in her life.  Then, to give her comfort I found myself turning to my personal mission themed scripture, 2 Corinthians 12:9-10;

“9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”

She seemed to sit up straight when I finished reading and she asked for the scripture reference again. I proceeded to bear my testimony on the saving power of the Atonement of the Lord and that she can find strength relying on Him.

I cannot write down all that I had said that day for I was led by the spirit when I spoke and cannot recall all of the words that were spoken but I knew it was only for her, which is why I cannot recall them. But I do recall promising her that if she endures past this hard time in her life and obey the commandments of God, the Lord will prepare a way for her to get baptized and will provide a way for her to be able to support herself and her son. Afterwards with Brother Michael with us, we were able to make the atmosphere light, we all were laughing and helped her relax and feel peace again. :)

Then came Saturday… we made sure she was still coming because it's 7:00 and she's still not there.  We get a call from her saying that traffic is bad so she'll be late. Okay, that's not too bad.  20 minutes later she calls saying, “Elders, can you pray for me?” because she's nervous and stressed she's late.  20 minutes later she comes out of the taxi and we're already there to greet her and bring her inside.  Brother Ormond, our Ward mission leader, asked me to speak on Faith in place of a sister who couldn't make it, so I gave a surprise talk on faith during the opening of the service. Haha.  I was so scared!  It was half in Tagalog, half in English. But that's fine.  So after the final words by Bishop Duad, Sister Alice was able to follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by immersion by her good friend, Spencer Javier, who holds the Priesthood authority of God.  It was a great and special moment; the room was filled with the Spirit as I had the opportunity to witness her baptism. ^_^  I cannot explain through words the joy that I felt that day but I know I’ll remember it forever  for it has been recorded here in this email and in my journal! ^_^

Waiting for Sister Alice to arrive...
With Sister Alice right before her baptism...
Some of the ward members attending her baptism...
Afterwards, she bore her testimony on her conversion experience.  She's also been through a lot of religions in her short life. Muslim, Catholic, etc. and then she found the church.  But then when she found the church and started taking lessons, life started getting harder and harder again. And then after 9 months she was finally prepared for baptism and she felt like she should cancel it and get her life in order first. Her whole testimony was like a rerun of what she had said earlier that week except she went more into detail for the members.  Then she said when she felt she should quit she called the elders over to talk to them.  "And they read me a scripture which really helped me with my decision to be here today.  This scripture had given me the strength to press on." and she read 2nd Corinthians 12:9-10!!! Ahh!!! I felt so happy when she read that scripture and felt like what I did, what I had said to her actually had been a determining  factor in her decision to still be baptized even when the whole world was trying to stop her. I truly felt like a servant of the Lord at that moment and felt that what I've been trying so hard to do here in the Philippines actually has meaning in people's lives, in people's happiness!

I wish I could write more and answer all of your questions but it's late now, and my companion’s been done for a long long time already but he's too shy to tell me he wants to go home and eat.  I'll dedicate next week to answering questions okay?  I have them all printed already. So don't worry.

But, I can finish by telling you that since her baptism, she has found a place to live that is still in the area. This is a huge blessing because she would have had to move to Quezon City after her baptism if not for this place that she had found.  I know this was possible because of her obedience to the Lord's commandments.  Remember, a miracle "is the natural result of the correct application of true eternal principles."

I love you all and hope you are doing well. Thank you for the support.  I feel like after Mom told me she made a blog I’m beginning to write like a novelist rather than just an email ha-ha!  Okay…well, I pray for you all while I’m out here and your emails and support bring me much strength.  I know that your love is so strong it overcomes oceans to reach me, which it has ^_^.  I am grateful for the fact that we're sealed together in the Temple and that we can be a family together forever, even after this life.  It brings me much peace.  Well, I'm off to go serving again!

Doing you Proud,
-Elder Froude

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

April 8, 2012 - Part 2

Weekly Mail Part 2

So, here I am back in an internet shop in order to finish my email and email my Mission
President. Soooo, I have much kwento about the past few hours :) :) :)

Well, we picked up Sis. Alice and took her to the mission office by taxi…110 pesos from our area...grabe!  (Oh my goodness!)  Haha!  Ayos lang. (It’s okay.)  Anyway, on the way over, I was talking with Sister Alice and how she's been feeling about her interview with president.

So, let me give a little more background on what's been going on. Sister Alice has been an investigator for 9 months so far. She first heard of the church and started taking lessons in Makati City and has been through a lot since then. She has a 2 year old son, Mateo. Remember how I said that I thought she was 23 or 25? Well, she's actually just turned 20...haha!!! But it makes the story even harder for her. Let's just say she's been through a lot and she's moved out of her family’s house and is living with a friend. She just made things up with her family and now they are against her again...long story short, it's been a long and arduous journey for her as she's struggled to find the Church. Pero, good news, she's read through the Book of Mormon twice :)

Last month, she went to see president for the first time to get baptized. But she was put on probation because she told president that she felt that she's not ready. Good for her to be strong enough to realize this fact. Because the thing was, she really wasn’t ready and she didn't want to be a part of this church she knows is true unless she was ready.  So for the last month, Elder Peralta and I have been working with her in her repentance process and be ready for baptism although we've only met with her 2 times at her house. Thank goodness for the Spirit telling me exactly what to say to her in those times because it was not until today that I understood her actual situation.  All I knew was that God loved his precious daughter in front of me. Looking back, I know that the words I’ve been speaking to her can ONLY be from God because I did not realize how perfect for her the messages I have given her…in the order they were given and in the way it was spoken.

Well, as we approached the mission office, she was feeling really depressed without the support or love of her family. She was in need of something good in her life, in order to help her support her son, Mateo, without her grandma to watch him while she's at work. I was feeling for her, and wanted to help so bad but knew not how to. But when we got into the office, it was a very friendly and happy atmosphere with other missionaries also getting interviews. I'm thankful to the missionaries who were so friendly to her and made things more comfortable for her. The AP Elder Kinikini was a great help to us. I even saw a sister from my batch back at the MTC. She told me that she and Elder McCoy made it to the PHI on Wednesday!!! YES!!! I'm glad he's doing well. Anyway moving on, so she was feeling quite nervous but I was talking to her and giving her comfort the whole time. I suddenly got a thought to pray with her before the interview, so I asked if she wanted to go outside with Elder Peralta and I and we could offer a prayer for her. So we went outside the building and I offered a prayer for her and for God to give her comfort and bless her with the Holy Spirit to guide her and watch over her in the interview. And after that, we got a text from our housemates that they were praying for her too. ^_^ Wow, I showed her the text and let her know that she has more support than she even knows. I think that was very comforting for her cause she relaxed after that.

So, then she went into the office of President and we began to wait, hope, and pray for her.  And to whoever may be reading this, I can testify to you that God does answer prayers. I know this is true, because Sister Alice came out of that interview and she said she was cleared for baptism. !!!!^_^!!!! After 9 months of missionary after missionary work, Elder Peralta and I were the ones to help her get to that final point. President Delamare seemed really confident in Sister Alice and her process of repentance that she's been through. I already knew she had truly repented because I could see how she's experienced that Godly sorrow and humility. My family and friends, I have seen the Hand of God lift a young women from the depth of despair and brought her to the young woman I saw walking out of the office jumping up and down telling us that she is finally able to be baptized. The baptismal service of Sister Alice will be held this Saturday at 7pm. She couldn't wait so we scheduled it as fast as we could.  haha!!! A good friend of hers will be baptizing her.

For the first time on my mission I have felt the true happiness that only a missionary can feel. This is the greatest happiness I think I’ve ever felt. But it's a different kind of happiness from anything I’ve ever felt before. I can't describe it except for that it felt like God lent me some of his happiness to see his prodigal daughter come back to him, after knowing how hard she's struggled to get there. I feel honored, so honored to have been able to help her return to the blessing and comfort of her Father in Heaven. Although I cannot take most of the credit, for 9 month’s worth of missionaries in many areas of the Philippines have helped her get here. I was lucky enough to see her through to the end.

Celebrating with Sister Alice after her interview...
Above are some pictures we took at the mall celebrating with ice cream and many high fives!!! (resisted giving her a hug like I would if not a missionary).

So is this mission worth it?
You bet, 2 years is hardly enough time to give if I could feel that Joy again and again and again. I'm sure that there are many others like Sister Alice that need us out there, so for them and for God, I will continue my journey and rejoice (D&C 100:12)
Am I sure this is my purpose in life?
I've never been more sure of anything in my life than this mission. I can honestly say that now. I have tasted of the fruit of the tree of life and i want all to partake.

That is the best I can give you with this weekly letter, I cannot add more because nothing can compete with the experience I’ve had today.

Wow, what a P-day ^_^ haha!

However, know that just because I’m a missionary, doesn't mean that you cannot also feel the joy that I have. I know for a fact that there are sister Alice’s around where you are right now looking for a way to escape their pit of despair. Give them the light, show them the way back to Christ. Pray for missionary experience with real intent and I know that the Lord will put people into your life that will need the knowledge that you have about the Gospel and your experiences. The Lord knows where his lost sheep are. I know that you can bring them back to the fold.  If I knew then what I know now, I would have shared the Gospel with everyone I knew back home XD. Cause this is the greatest feeling!

Haha!  Okay, well that's my day and the highlight of the week, all the stresses and problems before do not matter now. And I’m about as excited as a newborn puppy! I'll have many pictures next Monday!!! I love you all, I pray for you every day, so I know you'll be fine. Do what the Spirit directs and you'll never be wrong, and the powers of darkness will never be able to lay a finger on you! Alam ko po na tooto ang Simbahan Ni Jesucristo ng Mga Banal ng Mga Huling Araw. Alam ko po na, Mahal Tayo ng Dyios. I know this is true because I’ve seen the Lord touch the lives of many people and have even saved those who have the need and the desire to come unto Christ. And bear witness of God's love and works for his beloved Children and I am grateful for the wonderful Sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ so that we may be able to return to him and become clean from all of our past sins and mistakes through his Atonement. I know that when thou art in darkness, if you cry unto the Lord, he will show the light and show you the way. In the Name of Jesus Christ,Amen.

Doing you Proud,
-Elder Froude ^_^

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

April 8, 2012 - Holy Week email

Dear Mom, Dad, and Ryan, and whoever else may be reading,

First off, I want to say thank you all so much for your love and support and emails to me, even if they are just short, they bring me lots of happiness being out here in the PHI and I do appreciate it!

Me and other missionaries in our area.  That's our chapel.
Happy Easter!!!  I hope you are all enjoying the Day of our Lord today and remembering his sacrifice.  Of course, we do that every Sunday so it's not a big difference, diba?  (right?)  Haha!  A lot of people ask what we (Mormons)do on Holy Week and I say, well... we go to church, take the sacrament, rest from our labors on Sunday, remember his we do every week :P  LOL! 

So, these are my observations from Holy Week in the PHI.

1. All of the stores are closed during Holy week (well, most of them) which means my laundry was stuck in the laundry place till Sunday evening  >.<   I had to re-wash my clothes almost every night till then.

2. The people in Pasig walk to Antipolo mountains and back for repentance....thousands and thousands of people were walking Thursday and Friday. O.o

3. They make giant floats of saints and of Jesus to walk with, sometimes with music, food, and matching t-shirts.

4. The Catholics had a tv broadcast called, The Last 7 Words, which refers to the last 7 words that Jesus spoke before he died on the cross.  And so, I looked it up in the King James Version of the Bible and it's actually 8 words… "Father, into thy hands I commend my Spirit."  So then we were talking and we thought, Oh!  They must have left out the word “Father” because they believe that He and the Father are one!  It finally made sense to us then.  Then we were able to talk about the Catholic’s different beliefs in comparison to ours, because the Arduos and my companion were former Catholics.

5. It was very interesting, too, how when it rained during that week, the people would bring out bottles to catch the water because it's holy or something like that.

6. Holy week is a giant party for the whole country!  Haha! If you weren't walking to Antipolo, you were on the streets partying, or karaokeing, or singing poems to Mother Mary or something.  Interesting…

Because of Holy week, a lot of people were on vacation so we didn't get to teach as much this week.  But then again, those that were here, we finally got to see the husbands that work till late nights and don't have days off.  So that was interesting. It was really good too, cause we were able to get 4 less-actives to come to General Conference which was a miracle for me!  Haha.  Although, I was kind of surprised cause at the Priesthood session, there were only 35 men there. Then at the other Saturday session, there were only a few people.  But, Sunday was full all the way to the back of the Chapel!!!  Ahhh!!!  haha.!

Oh, so I need to go now and bring an investigator to go and be interviewed for baptism. :)  I'll finish my email later, hopefully, but for now I have to go. Things have been pretty stressful for me this week so I'm going to try and find an outlet that is okay.  I'll see what I can do :)  Just know that I'm doing my best, and I love you all.  Thank you all so much for your support!!!
They drink sodas in plastic baggies here.

-Doing you Proud,
Elder Froude ^_^

To be Continued...

Elder Froude's mailing address

Please use this address for all of your incoming mail from your family and friends from now on:

Elder Julien Froude
C/O Philippines Quezon City Mission                                                                                                           
Aurora Blvd. Corner JP Rizal                                                                                                        
Project 4, Cubao, Quezon City                                                                                                                  
Metro Manila, Philippines

April 2, 2012 - Re: Hello There Elder Froude!

I'm so glad to hear that you all are doing great!  And especially Laney.  She looks so big and so maganda! (beautiful)  Ang ganda sya!  (she’s beautiful!)  Haha!  I'm glad the family was able to come and see Laney as well.  And I'm glad you've been there for Lauren, Mom ^_^.  I feel like I can't do much here from the Philippines for Laney and the Dye's but I'll serve harder with them in mind.  It's really interesting how Laney came the day I left for the Philippines.  So, however old Laney is is how long I've been out in the Field.  And every time I see here I'll remember she came into the world when I started my adventure as a missionary ^_^.

In front of the Manila Temple...
Sounds like the weekend's been a blast for you all!  And yes, General Conference is a week late for us. We all get to watch it at the stake center with less-actives and investigators that we invite. I can't wait to hear the prophet and other General Authorities speak again!  And in English :) YES!!!  We also sing in church in English too.  Go figure.  Priesthood session is at 8 am for us and then 10:00 is general session then 2 pm is next after that.  After the sessions on Saturday we, as a zone, are going to eat at Mang Inasal’s.  Lol!

Inihaw na baboy, itlog tsaka rice for lunch!  Yummm!!!
Now to start on my week...  It will be all jumbled because I just wrote down what I wanted to talk about so here it goes…

First off, I've gotten an email from the mission president saying that the hardest weeks are now over and I can start getting into the groove of things, which is true!  I've been really great this whole week in serving and not being homesick.  Although literally, Not a day goes by that I do not tell someone about your story, Dad.  Everyone asks, why is your name Froude?  Fil-Am ba kayo? (Are you Filipino-American?) And so I go into how you and Mom are from San Pedro, Laguna and how you've been adopted by James Froude, you went to America, joined the Air Force.  You and mom were neighbors, wrote each other for 3 years, you married her, took her to America, I was born in California and now I'm serving a mission in the PHI and learning their language.

This process usually takes 20 minutes or so and everyone loves the story!  One member's house we eat at every Wednesday (Brother George) says you should write it down and sell that story to a movie maker or TV producer in the Philippines and the Filipinos would love it!  You'd get rich!  Hahaha! Cause it's a once in a lifetime story, diba? (right?)  So I've been able to build a lot of trust from members and investigators with just my name and your life story ^_^.  Which works out for me!  It only makes me more "Froude" of my name and I wear it proudly every day. Then, from there I can share about the other great name on my tag, Jesus Christ.  And things just work out from there.  Yun! (So there!)

Also at Brother George's house, I saw a poster in their dining room. When I saw it, I had a flash back to when I opened my mission call.  Later that night I was able to see a few images of the PHI and that was one of them, it was a really neat experience so I've written it down in my journal.

So, Saturday we went around town looking for a referral.  All day, we've been walking, we only had 2 lessons so far and 4 people not home or busy.  So, we've been walking a lot. I was feeling sore and tired, and Elder Peralta's back was hurting.  When we got to Sister Jenine's house we were hoping she'd be there cause they always give us a snack and so we went there in hopes to teach her. Now when we got there with such hope and about to collapse, she wasn't home... T_T Sad day...  So, we sat down thinking about what to do.  We sat for a good while to rest and we decided that no matter what we needed to press forward.  So, I told Elder Peralta, you know that it is when we are at our peak of exhaustion and then we go a little further that the Lord blesses us the most, right?  And so we pressed on.  As we left and went up the hill, surely here comes Sister Jenine in a trike!  Yay! We taught her and all was well.

Remember that “Miracles are the natural result of correctly applied true eternal principles.” ^_^  I love it! Okay, so I need to go now and do shopping.

Sorry I'm emailing late… everyone wanted to go to the mall before email >.<   Usually we email first but it's okay.  I'll cya next week and we can chat then, okay?

Love you all!!!

Doing you Proud,
-Elder Froude

March 25, 2012 - In an internet cafe...

March 25, 2012

I've only had enough time so far to read a few of the emails, it's been kinda hard adjusting from getting awesome letters of encouragement and love every day to once a week. Haha!  It makes the week long if I think about it too much.  haha! Actually, this week has gone by pretty fast... now to answer your questions (haven't started the long email yet).
Me and my companion, Elder Peralta in our tiny apartment.
There are internet cafes all round Pasig City…there are like 3 about 50 feet from our apartment.  It's 20 pesos an hour, not bad.  I don't have hot water, nor do I boil it. I just use the faucet in the CR (comfort room) and I use the tabo to pour it on me; then I soap and shampoo and tabo again... haha!!! I actually don't miss warm showers too much; the cool water is refreshing. I just never swallow the water. XD

I have adjusted to the humidity and fortunately the weather has been so kind to us; not too hot except for Friday when it suddenly rained SUPER HARD!!! I was laughing the whole time because I’ve never seen such hard rain before.  Pasig, luckily, has a good sewer system so not too much flooding to impair the work. And I only carry a little bit of money with me at a time, and in the front pocket in a coin bag so I can pay for jeepneys and such. Speaking of which, some Jeepneys look super nice with a cool paint job and nice seats and others are super ghetto haha!

Bro. & Sis. nanay and tatay here in PI.
The food is good over here.  There is one family, recent converts, the Arduo's, that feed us whenever we don't have any dinner appointment. She made me some lumpia cause she asked what I ate back home and I told her what you cooked so she made fried lumpia.  But it was bigger and had noodles in it and was not like yours at all.  And I've eaten at a lot of restaurants too as a treat from the members. But, out of all the food I've had, none of it is better than your Filipino food ;)  Yours is way better!  Okay, I'll send this and answer the others in another email…


Dear Mom, Dad, Ryan, and whoever may be reading,

Well, what can I's been an intense week. Just trying to get used to everything now, luckily, I’ve gotten used to the weather. Actually, the weather has been kind to us as of late. Not too hot at all. Well except for Thursday it was ready hot but that wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Then Friday it rained so hard!! Harder than any time I’ve ever been in the rain! My shoes and socks and pants got so soaked!!! haha But I enjoyed it so much XD Everything else has been just me trying to remember where everything is, We've had about 27 lessons this week to less actives and recent converts this week. So, that's been good. Working hard makes the time pass by like, "wait how did it get dark so fast?" And I haven't had to worry about sleeping or jetlag because once I get home, as soon as I hit the pillow I’m out.  XD  I'm always exhausted it's great! ^_^ But sometimes I don't want to get up in the morning cause I want to sleep more. LOL!

Without a doubt this mission has been the hardest thing I've ever had to do in my entire life. At the apartment, when I’m not doing much is when I feel the homesickness. It's pretty hard here cause everything here reminds me of you all!  From the humidity, to the Abba playing in someone's karaoke, or Journey in a jeepney or sometimes even, walking through a ghettto part of town and suddenly hearing “Jar of Hearts” playing.  haha!  One time at a restaurant I heard “King and Queen of Hearts” playing and it reminded me of all of our family road trips. Haha!  Normally, I just enjoy the song and it inspires me to work harder but then Journey played on a jeepney on the way to church on Sunday and I had to play the air drums to “Faithfully.” Haha!  It was an emotional experience.

But don't worry!!! I found out a way to overcome it! You see, now that I’m about almost 2 weeks in, I know the people and have a relation with them! Now instead of waiting for 2 years to go by, I can't wait till our next appointment with them because I’m seeing how they are growing so much!!!! I look forward to each and every new day. Which helps me overcome homesickness. If I focus on the people and not myself, then time moves by so fast and I accomplish much. ^_^ So don't worry about me, now that I know and love the people I can overcome my homesickness. It's just the adversary trying to ruin my work here but I won't let him win!

Right now we visit a lot of less actives and try to get them to come to church, many of them can't because they work on Sunday, and some can’t afford transportation.  Can you help me figure out how to get them to church or convince them to attend church?  Right now we use promised blessing to support our cause to get them to church and remind them of the atonement of the Lord and how important it is to partake of the sacrament to become clean every week.  So if you could help me find scriptures and stories or such to help them come to church I would be grateful. Although at the end of the day it is their choice to go or not, I just need to have them desire to go to church. That is my concern for now, so I’m putting all of my study and time into resolving their concerns and at least have them consistently read the scriptures. Cause then their faith will build from that.

Oh about our potential investigators…Sister Donita and Sister Jenine and hopefully Sister Alice. So, when I first heard these names I expected women with children and such right? That's the impression I get with the title sister.  Cause Brother Valeriano was about 60 yrs. oldwhen we baptized him.  Pero, Sister Jenine is 19 ,Sister Donita is 15, and Sister Alice is 25.  Haha!  I was shocked that they were so young and we were teaching them. LOL! Hopefully, they'll be able to make their dates which are this Saturday. Except Sister Alice. But Sister Jenine is reluctant because she hasn't told her parents she was taking lessons and she is worried they won't accept her. So, I told her to pray with real intent and sincerely to God if this church is true then to make her decision. (cause she's been reading the Book of Mormon) ^_^  I don't know, I just have this great love for the people here; it makes me realize that I am needed here and I need to be the one to make a difference.

Well, that's all that I have this week; we need to go out and buy food before we play Rugby with an investigator. Btw, for us, we get PDays all day according to the mission president; much needed. (usually you go out and work after 6pm) pero our Pdays are all day.  Yay!

Well, I need to get going preparing haha ^_^ I love you all and I serve my hardest everyday so that you can gain many blessings from the Lord. When I got super homesick one time, I referred to the scriptures which I used to comfort people in college and in the MTC.  So, I took my own counsel and read D&C 100:1 and D&C 100:12 for comfort and strength. ^_^ I hope you are all well. I love you all. Please keep yourselves healthy and don't do anything dangerous. Miss Kita!!!

Doing you Proud,
-Elder Froude ^_^

March 19, 2012 - First email from the Philippines!

Manila International Airport
Oh my gosh the PHI is crazy!!! Let me start from when I got here. So once the plane landed and we went into the airport, I felt the warm embrace of the Philippines....XD the humidity!  Our driver then took us from the airport to the mission home where we unloaded our things and went inside.  It was a really nice house, down the street from the old house of The Castro (which was huge and had a golden gate).  Anyway that is not mahalaga (important) haha. The president greeted us along with the missionaries that are leaving and our trainers.  It was hot outside at 11 am. 

On our way to the mission home from the airport.
Anyway, so then what happened after was we had lunch together, got to know each other and then came orientation.  Everything was happening so fast!  Then we went through some orientation then the mission president interviewed me. He's a really nice guy, very welcoming. Then we finished orientation and were assigned trainers.  My companion/trainer/tatay (nickname for trainers) is a native, Elder Peralta from Bacolod City, Bacolod.  I feel extremely blessed though because he speaks a lot of good English even with his accent. I'm glad he's a native and he speaks English! (Details later)  Anyway, so our area is the Pasig City Zone, Pasig City 2nd Ward.  It's such a great area/ward too!  The people are very welcoming and nice; they always let us in if they're home.  I'm actually in an English speaking ward.  It makes it easier when I teach lessons so I can speak as much Tagalog as I know and then use English when I don’t know it. I bore my testimony this Sunday in mostly taglish but I was so nervous ha-ha.  They have the best of both worlds; they have a lot of rich people, and many poor people who attend church.  Our ward mission leader is a successful business man from Australia ha-ha.  I didn't think I’d find white people here much. 

Anyway, okay so back to the assignment of companions.  So once I got my companion and area I quickly went out into the field. They took my luggage and hauled me away.  Then I got to my apartment.  Oh my gosh... It is the hottest place on earth!  I want so much to go out into the field as much as possible because outside of our apartment is cooler than inside haha!!!  But we have electrical fans so that’s okay.  I just sleep with one at my feet pointing up to me all night and when I study.  It's a small little place, about the size of our loft, but in it are the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room and our study area.  Then there are stairs that go to the 2nd floor where our beds are…2 rooms, 4 beds and 4 closets.  Oh, our apartment mates are an Australian, Elder Hilbert and another Bacolod Pinoy Elder Galingana who share the same apartment.  It's actually a lot better than I thought it would be.  For one, we have fans and second, the toilet flushes!!! XD I still have to use the “tabo” though.  Except for the first few days I have been cheating. I've been using tissue paper I bought from the bookstore ha-ha!  But I did try to use the tabo the last two days.  I spilled it on the back of my shirt at a member's house one time haha!  Oh gosh!  I still don't know how to do it properly… haha!  It'll take time like all things.  Oh and I finally got the rest of the toiletries that I needed today soap, shampoo, toothpaste.  I've been living off of sample sized stuff haha! 

That's my bed on the floor.  It's cooler than sleeping on the top bunk.
Okay, oh so now to the field work. It was about 5pm when we started getting out of the apartment and out to the field. But first an important thing... So apparently at orientation I learned that there are 650,000 members in the Philippines and only 150,000 active.  So the area presidency asked the Brethren if they could focus the missionary effort into reactivation rather than baptism.  So for 2012, our focus as missionaries is to reactivate the less active members to build the kingdom.  Because apparently the past missionaries have focused so much on baptism that they didn't build the faith of the people they were baptizing.  And once the Elders left so did the less activation occur.  So mainly we visit less active and part member families. But don't worry, just cause we're not tracting doesn't mean we don't get our own baptisms.  On Saturday I had my first baptism!!!! A 60 year old man who works in a member’s car repair shop. Brother Balariano Nagorda.  I didn't really have much to do with it haha.  Elder Peralta and his last companion did all of the work; I just plucked the fruit.  A member friend baptized him and I got to be in the pictures lol.  Pero it still counts!  You can add that to my board thingy lol!!!  First Baptism!!! ^_^  Probably when I’m more a part of the next one will I personally count it as my first baptism.  But for the record, I think it should count. 

My first baptism...Bro. Balariano Nagorda and my companion/trainer  Elder Peralta.
But man, I do feel that the field here in the PHI is white and ready to harvest.  I feel like so many people have been prepared for us when we enter into their houses (well, what counts as a house in the PHI); even the less actives. They may have fallen off the track but that's because no one has been there to resolve their concerns.  Many of their concerns are... transportation is hard (traffic and money), *sidenote* TRAFFIC IN THE PHILIPPINES IS THE WORST I’VE EVER SEEN IN MY WHOLE LIFE!!! I would rather take Utah drivers any day!!!! Forget all that you know of rules of the road.  There is one law and that is "survival of the fittest" which means...if you don't fit you don't survive haha!  *end digression :P* or they work on Sundays.  So that's been our main focus.  If there are any scriptures you know or stories to tell or ways to address these needs I would be most grateful. We have our ways but I know it's good to get other opinions.  And I want to involve you with my “real" investigators and less actives. 

Okay, so we start going out, and we suddenly jump into a jeepney in the middle of the street and I was scared for my life haha!  So many things are still confusing. But we went to a few less active's houses.  And since they already had been taught all 5 lessons we mainly talk to them to find needs and then address it with a spiritual thought and give them commitments to build their faith.  As we walked up to our first appointment at the Ardol's family house, I asked my companion ummm... what are we teaching them, and how are we going to do it? And he replied, "Well, we talk to them until we find a need, then we'll address it with a spiritual thought, sort of to build their faith...oh and you're leading the lesson."  Then I said WHAT!!! But this is my first appointment ever!!! Then he replied with his Key Phrase, "Do not worry Elder... The Lord will provide!" and he patted me on the back and kept going. 

And that is how the past almost a week has gone. Because I don't know the area he just leads me to where the appointment is and I start the lesson when it's okay. Cause you see, there is this new 12 week program they are doing for the new missionaries.  The Brethren believe that the new missionaries can do so much more than their senior companions believe they can at the beginning, so each week there is a focus for new missionaries such as, start each lesson the first week, then lead lesson 1 discussion and so on with 2 hours of companionship study.  Anyway, it's different for us since we focus mainly on less actives but it's still the same principle.  Anyway, on Saturday we had 7 appointments (that's a lot) and I began each one lol! It's really great for my Tagalog and teaching skills.  It's not that I’m shy during lessons, I just don't know how to make more than small talk in Tagalog. But what I do know how to do with he help of the spirit is talk about the gospel. Elder Peralta was surprised at how much I knew how to say and how much I could teach on my first day.  And since then, it's been getting only better.  He said he's glad I’m easy to train.  He didn't want a Utah kid haha!!! He’s only been out 8 months.  And all of the less actives and members are surprised by how well I can speak Tagalog (accent and all) when I tell them I’ve only been here 3, 4, 5 days and such XD. It's been helpful for building their faith and all so I do enjoy it. All because I spent a lot of my time at the MTC taking it seriously and studying hard. You'll know what I mean when you get there, Ryan. There's a lot of temptation to just sit around and talk or talk to other missionaries when it's study time.

So, that's how the last few days have been…busy and work filled. But don't think I’m too busy to miss you all. I miss and think about you all, all of the time. It's at its worst when we're at the apartment in the morning or night getting ready for bed. Actually on Saturday after lunch I went up to my room saying I was going to take a nap and I cried for half an hour because of all of the stress, of being in a new place, trying so hard with the language not knowing where I am or where I’m going when we leave the apartment and missing you all in general. I guess I’ve been trying to be strong these past 10 weeks and I held it all in trying not to cry. I remember trying not to look at you mom and dad when I was going to the MTC cause I didn't want you to see me cry. But I wish now I could have looked you in the eye one more time and told you that I love you cause I really do and I regret not being strong enough to look at you and say it again before I left. Anyway, so just thinking about that made me cry over and over again, cause I was being selfish and thinking about myself. So I prayed really hard to make sure that you were all safe and okay and I had to tell myself why I’m here in the Philippines. It’s to share the joy of the gospel with the people of the Philippines. You know Elder McCoy once told me that "Missionaries give up 2 years of their life so that others can be with their family for eternity." and so that gives me strength to press on.  Maybe a hand written letter or care package might make this first month easier. Also, remember that FAMILY stands for "Forget About Me, I Love You" ^_^ and I Do love you all so much and want you to know that. 

But don't worry!!!   I'm doing way better now. I'm getting used to the area and the ward has done so much to make me feel welcome. Actually, I feel so blessed here because we have a dinner appointment every night. The Arduo Family expects us to come when we don't have an appointment.  And there is rarely a day when we don't have a member with us going to less actives for fellowshipping.  I can feel that this area is ready to be harvested, as long as we do our best to save His children and Build his kingdom!  We already have 2 more baptismal dates, which I am helping a lot with, so don't worry about getting investigators; we get a lot of referrals. 

Summary: Everything here is crazy but I’m okay because the Lord will provide.  Getting used to everything will take time and I can speak Taglish when in doubt. The best way to become a better missionary is just like what Captain Spears said in Band of Brothers; "The moment you accept you're already dead is the moment you'll become a better soldier…" or something like that.  I've decided everything will be crazy so I’m a lot better for it. Nothing surprises me now. Not even going to the depths of the Filipino ghettos (way ghettoer than ours) and taking turns down the darkest alleyways and through the scariest tunnels to find the investigators and less-actives that need the help of God!  

^_^ I'm doing great, the work and church is true and I love you.  Can’t wait to hear back from you!!! Ingat!!! Please take care of yourselves... The adversary will do anything to make this mission harder for me than it already is.  So please be well. I pray for you all always! 

And yes I’ll take a lot of pictures (except I’m already hitting the memory full sign because it's only 2 GB…I need another!!!) 

Okay Mahal Kita!, CYA Later!!!

Doing you Proud,
Elder Froude ^_^ 

March 10, 2012 - Last email from MTC

Magandang Umaga sa pamilia ko!!!  (Good morning to my family!)  So this is the last email you will receive from me where I only have 30 minutes to reply!!!  Yes!  Astig! (Cool!)  Anyway, so I’ve decided that if you all do me in the PHI or send me letters, it'll be quicker if I could just email you rather than wait 10-15 days for you to get a letter....unless it was important okay?  So how's everything going?  Thank you so much for the wonderful cookies: they were delicious and I loved them.  I have been sharing so don't worry ;) but I still have like 5 cookies left haha.  I did also love the candies that you sent me as well.  I love goldfish and sour gummie worms.  Masarap! (So good!)  Oh and I got your phone and tie package on Thursday and I’m so excited to use it.  I asked my branch president if it's okay so I’ll get back to you on Sunday, just to let you know if it's legal or not for him.  But I have faith it will be.  But if not I’ll email you and send it back.

So guess what dad?  I now for the last few weeks have found me love for pepper.  It adds so much taste to rather tasteless food.  I do now appreciate it.  

Saying goodbye to my companion and friend,
Elder McCoy.  He has to stay another 3 weeks because of his leg.
Okay so things are crazy here now, we are leaving on Tuesday and everyone's getting ready to pack and go.  I’m doing laundry right now and packing everything that I don't need in the PHI and putting it in a box.  We have a lot of big boxes.  I'll see how much it'll cost.  But I think I should bring with me dad's raincoat because I know it'll rain a lot there right?  Right now we've just been doing a lot of teaching in Tagalog so I think I’m okay in that area, and I feel natural talking about just normal get to know you stuff in Tagalog too.  So we'll see how it goes.  I think I just need to focus on listening and understanding for these next few days and ask my teachers to speak way faster.  SO that I 'm not shocked when I get there (too much) oh gosh.  Hindi ko alam kung handa ako!  Mabilis ang MTC stay ko! (I don't know if I'm ready.  My MTC stay was too short.)  Oh well, i'll just go and hit the ground running and pray that I get a great trainer!  Pray for me too please!  I know that you already do, haha.

Kumusta ang eskuwela na trabajo ni Ryan? Mabuti? or Hindi Mabuti?  (How's Ryan doing with his school work? Good or not good?) Have you been reading the book of Mormon at school and taking it where ever you go, Ryan?  It's never too early to start missionary work, Ryan.  But it is scary and I know that.  I have a friend in mind that I wish I was able to share the gospel with but didn’t.  It'll be like cliff jumping though my brother.  It’s scary before you do it, but once you take that leap of faith and actually do it, then you won’t' be able to help it but do it again and again and again!  Alam ko po na totoo it dahil naranasan ako ito araw-araw!  o Sige. (I know this is true because I experience this everyday.  Okay.)

Anyway, so infield orientation has been really great! We learned how to pass out Mormon .org cards and exercise faith and we've been taught cool object lessons and such. It's been cool. There were many famous Mormon missionaries that came and taught us.  Like the people from "The District" videos I’ve watched.  Anyway, it's all been nice and such. I've learned a lot, oh especially that miracles are… "the natural result of correctly applying true eternal principles." Now I understand so much because of it!

Okay I’m almost out of time, I’ll be able to call you all on Tuesday, probably around 5:00-7:00pm is when I’ll call, and stay on the phone till the minutes run out. XD  I have a 7 hour layover so I don't leave till 1am. XD  Lots of time to talk. Okay so I’m going to email Mama now so Ingat! Mahal Kita! Kita kits!!!

Doing you proud,
-Elder Froude