Thursday, August 8, 2013

July 29, 2013 - Congratulations, Ryan!

Dear Mom, Dad, and the newly ordained  elder, Ryan Froude, who is now 18 years old...and everyone else who is as shocked as I am that my little brother now has the Melchizedek Priesthood,

I am sitting in a computer shop; I am all sweaty and tired from our zone activity. We went to Daranak Falls in Tanay, Rizal and it was gorgeous!  I just wanted to take pictures all day but, unfortunately, other people know I’m a good photographer so I felt like I was taking pictures for everyone so they'll have good pictures to send home, including my companion, haha!  The sad part about my talent as a photographer means I can't use this talent to photograph myself so I had to give my camera to someone else and hope they know how to zoom in or place people correctly with objects so that the waterfall is the focus of the picture and not me.  Anyway, I have a few good pictures I’ll send out and I hope you'll enjoy them.  We had a potluck (boodle fight) up in the mountain a short distance from the waterfall.  We also had a tour guide take us through the caves.  They were pretty awesome.  In any case, all the coordinating worked out and we all had a lot of fun (20 missionaries).

The zone has been great this week, half of the companionships hit the goals we’ve set so we wanted to do something special for them, all for the cost of a little under 200 pesos. :)

But now about my week.

I made my first attempt at Bicol Express (a spicy dish) today and boy was it great!  You just saut√© some pork until it's cooked, then add some coconut milk (fresh from the palengke (market)), and chili (or Sili sa Tagalog) and you have yourself a good tasting Bicol Express.  It was delicious! I hope I can make it for you when I get back.  Elder Lim taught me how to make it in Taguig but I never tried it until this week.

Anyway, I want to start off by first talking about my wonderful kabahay (housemates).  In our house in Teresa, there are 4 missionaries; Elder Acera, ako (me), Elder Bagonbon, and Elder Robertson.  You know about Elder Acera already.  He's probably one of the most hardworking missionaries I’ve been assigned with; we've been hitting all of our goals and seeing miracles like crazy. He's from Isabella and doesn't speak much English but he's a very charitable missionary.  And he's great! Elder Bagonbon has been out for about a year now.  He's training Elder Robertson and he's great at the guitar and singing.  He also cooks good Filipino food for us all of the time.  He's about comparable to a cartoon character cause he reacts very loudly to things and is super energetic.  He's a real funny guy; we are currently working to write an EFY song.

Elder Robertson is an 18 year old missionary from Utah.  He's a greenie and every day is an adventure to him.  The energy he brings to the house is awesome and we all just laugh cause he talks about the first time he had Balut and his jeepney rides and he just loves life.  I went on exchanges with him on Tuesday and he slipped in the mud and concrete when it was raining. When he got up he just yelled,”Tthat is SO going in the journal!”  Haha!!  He spends hours updating his journal every day.  I have like 3 types of journals so I’m not too worried.  I have my regular journal, my long emails, and my camera; all of these things basically cover every second of my mission.  Haha!

I also had the opportunity to go on exchanges with Elder Watters from Canada in Malaya.  It's a very province area as well where it's between a mountain range and Laguna Lake.  So that was fun.  What I learned from all of these exchanges is that there are so many great people in the world, member or not a member.  We meet and teach so many people and so many of them are really cool people, like there are a lot of people here I would totally be good friends with after the mission.

Like for example, yesterday, Elder Acera and I decided to do some finding to hit a goal we had set in the zone.  We just walked in front of the church and there are two people there nakatambay (loitering) in front of the church grounds and Elder Acera said, “Let's go talk to them.” so I said okay.  And we talked to them.  One of them was a 21 year old with only one leg but this guy could freestyle rap in Tagalog like I’ve never seen before.  Just without thinking he raps about us as missionaries, how we don't drink and smoke and we help people with the Love of Christ and all this stuff.  I could only catch like half of what he said cause he was rapping so fast, but Elder Acrea daw was really touched by this guy’s rap so we set an appointment to go teach them.  It was a great natural missionary experience.  We just talked about music for the first 5 minutes and we shared a little bit and got their contact information.  You bet we're going to go visit them this week!

Other than that, the best adventurous moment this week was going with President Revillo to visit Tanay Branch and Sampaloc Branch on Sunday.  We went to go visit those branches and attended their meetings and then checked out a potential place to open a branch in a place called Gabihan.  Anyway, we toured the place, tried to find a meeting house and a place for a missionary apartment and such.  It was fun!  President Revillo is so funny!  I can't really describe how it is but he just laughs about everything; the traffic, the unpaved roads, and other such things. It made it more comfortable, really, driving around with him. We related a lot through my experience in the office and I actually was telling them a lot about how the finances of the mission worked and such.  It was kind of like I was giving them a tutorial about the mission, with roads, and finances and such.  So it was cool.  Anyway, the place is so green and so nice looking.  I love every part of this zone!  Haha! I hope I stay for a long time.  Elder Acera has been here 5 transfers now so I have a good chance of staying next transfer.

Well, I wish you all a good week, trust in the lord and remember to do CPR if you have any trials you can't face.  Church, Prayer, Reading... if you do those you'll revive your Spiritual life like CPR does to physical life.  I know this to be true in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Doing you Proud,
Elder Froude ^_^

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