Monday, April 3, 2017

WEEK 33 - April 3, 2017 (Aparri, Philippines)

Hello everyone,

Happy General Conference weekend. I don’t get to watch until next weekend, so I’m sooo stoked for that. Especially because I heard there will be a new temple here in the Philippines!! People are going to love that announcement. Also, Happy Bday to LITTLE KENNY!! Even when you aren’t little anymore, we will still call you little kenny. 

First of all, yesterday was freezing. I loved it. Everybody had their thick winter coats on, shivering and huddling around fires haha. We are in the middle of a storm right now. Haven't seen the sun in a few days. I love this weather. I don’t sweat very much and it just feels nice. (editor: I looked up yesterday’s weather – it was a low of 72 degress with 85% humidity. Haha is right.)

As I’m writing this right now there is a little filipino boy leaning up against me asking for pesos to play on the computers haha. I’ll send a pic.  His name is Pacquiao. That’s kinda how it is around here… a bunch of kids running around in the computer shops, skipping class so they can play World of Warcraft. 

So a few quick stories for you. This morning I went to get a haircut here in Aparri, and the guy was excited to cut my hair. Said it was his first time to cut an American’s hair and that he was going to put my picture on the wall after the cut. So that’ll be fun to go back and see my pic on his wall, hanging for everyone to see. 

The other night, we had just got back from working, and I had to go to the bathroom soooooo bad. Problem was, we had no water. None at all. And our neighbor (we usually can get water from her) was asleep. She goes to bed at like 7. So I was in quite a difficult situation. So we decided that Jollibee (fast food restaurant) was our only option. We raced over there right as they were closing. Luckily, they let us in. But man, life is tough when you have no water. None of the dishes get done, sometimes you have to go to bed smelly and sweaty. Hopefully the water will get fixed soon. 

(editor: Gary mentioned that this kitchen looks pretty nasty. Ryan's response, "It smells worse!")

So this week was really good, we are having success here in Aparri. Right now we have 4 investigators that will be baptized on April 15. They all want to do it in the ocean, but we have a nice font that our Branch Pres wants us to use. We are all sooo stoked for that. One of the little towns in our area is about 15 minutes away from the city. It’s a big flat land right next to the ocean. I’ll send some pics. We have some solid investigators over there and a good family that picks them all up for church on Sunday. Their transportation is a small triC, but they fit like 10 people on it. I’ll send a picture of that too, it’s pretty hilarious. They are all related somehow and they seem to just keep building the branch over there, little by little. 

But yeah, our whole area has tons of potential. I’m excited to work here the next few months or however long I’m here. I especially love becoming good friends with the members and especially with the youth that will come out and work with us.

Branch Youth Activity

Well my testimony has grown more this week, as it seems to every week. And as I study personally every day, I seem to always learn something new or have something inspire or motivate me to work hard that day. And when I study PMG (Preach My Gospel), I always seem to find something that I need to work on to become better. A better missionary, a better teacher, and a better all around person. And lately I’ve been studying the Christ-like attributes. How amazing would our lives be if we all just mastered those attributes, haha. If we all had perfect Charity and Patience. Perfect Humility and Diligence. But then we think to Either 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....

If we pray and earnestly try to obtain these attributes and work towards becoming better, weak things will become strong. 

Also as I study PMG (Preach My Gospel) I always think to some of my friends that are preparing for missions… Matthew, Dallan. I’ll give a quick bit of advice to you guys. Study the PMG. Especially the discussions you will be teaching. I was blessed to be able to serve in Utah for a cycle and become familiar with teaching these lessons before I had to teach them in different languages. 

Love you guys, have a great week:)

-Elder Jenkins 

A few questions answered on the side...
* Do the sister missionaries have hot water in their apartments?
No, the sisters don't have hot water... there is no hot water here haha. I got to stay in a decent hotel in Laoag in December for the Christmas conference, and there was no hot water there either.
*What kinds of service opportunities do you have?
We haven't done any service yet. Nobody will accept it haha. They won't even let me put away my chair after a lesson. They are so kind it's amazing.
*Tell us about Jollibee's
Jollibee is alright... the burgers aren't very good, but I found an item on the menu that I like... the chili cheese dog. It tastes pretty good. So I get that and some fries most the time. 

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