Friday, December 30, 2016

Week 21: CHRISTMAS!!!

Merry Christmas everyone!! Man it's already over which is crazy but it was definitely interesting, much different from America!

Anyways not too much happened this week, Joseph, one of our investigators, went teaching with us in one of the more rural parts of our area and he loved it. Hopefully the YM we go with do a good job fellowshipping him!! 

Christmas was kind of lame actually because we had to go home at 4pm :( There are tons of drunk people out and there's a lot of fireworks that they put off in the streets so we have to be really careful and go home early. Same rules for the 31st too. It was fun though because we celebrated with four other sisters in our zone and just listened to Christmas music while eating our weight in candy that parents sent for Christmas. So, really a good day haha. I was also able to Skype my family earlier this morning which was super awesome. I love my family so much!

I can't believe that this year is almost over and in just one week, it'll be 2017! Crazy to think for the whole year of 2017 I'll be in the Philippines but I'm beyond excited for the people I'll meet and the experiences I'll have. These five months on the mission have seriously flown by! But thank you all for your support and love, it means the world to me. Hope you all have a fun and safe new year! 

Sister Pope

1) Going out teaching with Joseph, Jojo, and Jomen. They're great and so supportive of Joseph! Hopefully all of them will serve missions :)


2) Our crazy Christmas stuck in the apartment. This was after eating a lot so don't judge our faces!!



Week 20: PASKO AND PIGSA

Hey everyone!!! I can't believe that christmas is nEXT WEEK!!!! Christmas in ilonggo is "pasko" fyi. This week was pretty good though so I'll get right to it!!

So "pigsa" means.... boil. Yep, I have a boil. AGAIN. It's cool though because now I know exactly what to do for it to get better so hopefully it'll heal a lot faster than the first one. We haven't has to miss any proselyting time though which is good, as long as the pain stays down we're good to go for teaching. 

So I think I talked about this investigator we've been teaching before in previous emails, we call him mushroom boy. Well, he's finally been baptized! He was so excited and he's become so bakod (strong) in the church. He was a referral from a member, Jeffery, and had a lot of support there, so much so though he really wants to serve a mission as soon as he's done with school. Just such a great day for him, it'll be exciting to see how much more he grows in the coming months! Let me just testify real quick of the power of members/fellowshippers. Every member a missionary for real guys! 

Other than that, things are about same as usual, good as usual. I'm so excited for christmas and all the food that members will give us HAHA. But seriously, Christmas is great and everyone should remember the real importance of Christmas; families and Christ's love. Love you all and have a great Christmas!!!!

Sister Pope

1) Joshua and Jeffery, these two boys are crazy but awesome


2) Joshua!!! I pulled out my camera and this was the first pose he made haha


3) This was from splits last week, me and Sister Schneider!! 


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Week 19: KUTO!!!

Hello everyone!!! Another great week here in the Philippines, lots of awesome people we met and it's SO HOT like for real we smell terrible when we get home haha. But anyways I'll get right to it:

So "kuto" means lice in ilonggo. Yeah I have lice!! Really it was only a matter of time, like every single child here has lice for real, especially John D., one of our investigators. Sister Ducado though loving takes the lice out of my hair for me and we bought some lice shampoo so it'll clear up in no time!

We went on splits and exchanges this week which was super fun. First were the splits on Tuesday and I was with Sister Schneider!! I'm actually in her first area so we were able to go and visit the people she taught while she was here and it was just a fun day. Then we had exchanges on Thursday and I was with Sister Moy, the cutest sister here for real. She's from England and has an awesome british/ilonggo accent. She goes home next transfer though which is craaaazy. Time is flying people!!!!

I'm not going to say nothing else much happened this week because a lot happened but just little things that make the mission great. I'm seriously so grateful for all the people I've met/meet every day and feel blessed every day to go out and tell people how awesome and great their lives can be. I love the Philippines and I'm excited for another week!!

Maayong pasko, palangga ko kamo tanan :)

Sister Pope

I tried uploading pictures but the computers in this computer shack are SO sketchy and my camera might get a virus so stay tuned for next week haha

Monday, December 5, 2016

Week 18: BOILZ

Kamusta kamo sa inyo tanan!!! This week had it's up and downs, I'll just get right to it :))

So the downs for this week is I got a BOIL on my leg. If you don't know what a boil is, don't google it because they're hecka nasty for real. It was super duper painful and I had no clue where it came from but we had to stay at home for tHREE and a half days for it to get better. For any of you that have been sick on the mission field, you'll understand the torture of being trapped in your apartment as you try to get better. You just stare at the clock at every hour, imagining where you would be, who you would be teaching, all the people you need to teach but you're SICK at HOME. It's the worst!! Glad to say that I've fully recovered from it all, I just sound like a chain smoker now from the sore throat haha. 

So I'm done with my training already which is crazy. Transfers were today but I get to stay in Bacolod 2nd for Christmas!!!! Best present ever for real. I'm just going to cry for days when I leave this area. I love everyone too much!!

Not much else to write about since I was dead this week but we're back at it and excited for the work!! Really loving Bacolod and super excited for this month :) Filipinos are crazy about Christmas and I am too. If you guys want to get to know who the Savior was, what He did, and what He does for us now, just go check out mormon.org !! Lots of good stuff on there. Being on the mission I've seen the hand of the Lord in so many things and I know that He lives and loves us. He sacrificed all so that we can return to live with Him and our Heavenly Father. I feel both of their love for me and feel so blessed to live the life I have. He lives!

Sister Pope

1) You guys might be sick of seeing another picture of the basketball boys but here they are again!!! They're really just super amazing and they always bring their friends to our lessons so we usually have someone new to teach. From left to right, MikeMike, Marvin, Marlon, Aldrich, Ricky, Joseph 1, Argie, Joseph 2 and Carl. 


2) Me sitting on a jeepney!! This is what they look like on the inside. I look kind of dead in this picture, it was the first appointment we went to after being in the house for so long haha. Glad to be out in the real world!!


3) Sister Lee is in my district and they live on the other side of our house so we see her a lot. She KILLS me she's so funny haha. This is us on a tricycle going home after playing soccer at the church so that's why we look like we haven't showered in awhile haha, we haven't. There's a seat attachment on the side that can fit four people but since there were six of us Sister Lee and I sat on the back of the motorcycle. He was going sooooooo fast haha. Don't worry mom it's totally safe


4) Us on thanksgiving a couple weeks ago, eating chicken instead of turkey. Still good!!


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Week 17: PALUGPUT SA IMO DUH

Kamusta kamo everyone!!! Another good week diri sa Bacolod! I'll get right to it:

We went out to eat SO much this week since we had two district meetings and it was Thanksgiving so we just ate like animals. But I'm still losing the good ole poundage so don't worry mom!!! But I had chicken for Thanksgiving, I'll include a picture.

Our investigators are doing well! Mushroom boy Joshua has been doing his commitments and is SO devoted to change, he's so so excited for his baptism on the 17th and we are too :) Seriously it's the best teaching him because he just loves what we're teaching and gives such powerful prayers. Straight up homie siya. 

Basketball boys are doing well, except Joseph and his friends didn't go to church. Nice one Joseph. So we're having to readjust a few things for him but we're hoping that he'll be able to come next Sunday :) Marlon and Ricky came to church early this Sunday and BOTH of them were wearing POLOS and TIES!!!!! We about fell over dead. For real they would sometimes wear tank tops to church but what taught them sabbath day observance and they accepted SO well. I have a bakod gid picture sa ila to show sa inyo!! 

Anyways that's about it for the week, we continue on through the rain and hot and humid weather. Honestly the weather here doesn't bother me because I don't notice it but sometimes we'll be out proselyting and I feel fine but then I feel my back and my shirt is straight up soaked in sweat. Wooo pilipinas yaaa!!!! So on that TMI note I hope you all have a blessed week and welcome in December :)) Someone eat snow for me!!

Sister Pope

Lots of pictures this week get ready:

1) Happy Thanksgiving hahahaha still weird on the mission don't worry you all


2) PIZZAAAA it really was that big


3) Dinner at Marlon's house! This is what a lot of poor people eat here; fried fish, salted egg, tomato, and rice with soy sauce. It's actually really good and even more delicious with cool people. And Marlon is SO cool. He only makes about $20 a week but he always tells us how blessed his life is. He really is amazing!


4) The basketball boys at church! Ricky, Marlon, MikeMike, Cherist and Carl. They all wore the best they have :) 


5) Puto kids! They're always making puto and we help them when we can :) cooking in the pan is combo which is ~the~ tastiest thing, like funnel cake but with bananas on the inside YUM


6) John Dennis, one of our craziest investigators. He loves our lessons though and is so good about coming to church, he'll walk about fifteen minutes to church with his older brother. They're so awesome :)




Saturday, November 26, 2016

Week 16: GUSTO KO MAGITOM

Kamusta kamo tanan!!! Nami gid ang semana namon, excited gid sa hambalan sa inyo :)) 

So this week was amazingggg!! Our recent converts and investigators are just doing so well and we had a really powerful lesson with our investigator Joseph. We taught the basketball boys about temples and Joseph was our focus (17 years old) and we taught about baptisms for the dead and then he turned to his older brother Ricky and said "puede kita magdalan ang ngalan ni papa didto?" which means "could we bring dad's name there?" and we told him of course and he just smiled so big. I tried so hard not to cry it was such a sweet moment. Agh so many blessings from the temples guys we need one here in Bacolod.

Funny thing about my companionship, Sister Ducado doesn't like the sun because she doesn't want to get dark or "itom" but I do so she'll always use my umbrella and I'll just walk in the sunlight, she thinks I'm so buang (crazy) haha. 

So just a spiritual thing to share from this week that I learned from the lesson we had about temples in Mosiah 16:8, "But there is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath no victory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ." I know Joseph and Ricky will see their dad again and I just think of how happy they both were when we taught temples. I know that family's can be together forever and I'm so blessed to be here in the Philippines. Bacolod is really amazing :) 

Thank you all for your love and support, it means the world.

Sister Pope

1) FHE at the Lapore's with one of our investigators, Joshua! (blue shirt) We call him mushroom boy because he wants us to teach him every other day and is soooooo excited to be baptized. He's the best


2) It was Marvin's birthday on Tuesday so we brought him a cake to surprise him. The store didn't have any birthday candles so we bought 18 real candles and just stick them in the cake haha we thought it was going to light on fire. But then he was soooo surprised he started doing a shy kind of cry where you cry but you pretend like you're not crying cause all of your dude friends are there singing you happy birthday. Haha it was really sweet and was super grateful, he said it was his first birthday cake. 


Monday, November 14, 2016

Week 15: MISSION TOUR

Hey everybody!!! Merry Christmas! Haha, Christmas is in full swing here. Anyways, I'll get right to it because I have noooooo time this week :))

So Ricky is back home after being on vacation FOREVER, he's one of the basketball boys and recent converts, and is working with us again. Yay! People are amazing, especially him. We're really excited for his brother to be baptized next month. 

Mission tour was this week and ammaaaaaaazing!!! We had stake conference first with Elder Quentin L. Cook which was such a treat and then our mission tour had Bishop Wadell and Elder Robins speak. General authorities are just so amazing and we're so blessed to have their direction and guidance here on the mission, they said so many great things I needed to hear. To sum it up into one sentence: hold on to your families, they are SO important. 

Just a quick description of my area, it's mostly city but has a part with a lot of sugar cane fields. I actually really like being in the city because it's so much easier to teach lessons, I haven't scheduled a single appointment on my mission because people are always home and you'll just go up and be like "hey! can we teach you?" and they're like "yeah I'm not doing anything" haha, it's so great. I've really come to love this area and I'm so excited to see how it will progress while I'm here.

Anyways that's all for this week, things are going well and I'm loving the mission. I feel the language coming so much easier and loving the people has been a lot easier too. Until next week!! 

Sister Pope

1) Campo! (sugar cane) I'll try and remember to take pictures of city next week, it's just soooooo crazy in the city we never have time to just stop and stand


2) Basketball boys, Ricky is back!! Marlon, Carl, Joseph and Ricky. Joseph is Ricky's younger brother and is sooo excited to be baptized but is also a teenage boy so we're working on him keeping his commitments


3) We all DIED when we see this picture after I took it haha, that is Joseph's true laugh while Carl is tickling him. I love these boys!!!


4) Carl and Aldrich, they really like this picture I took of them



Sunday, November 13, 2016

Week 14: SEE? WHAT PUNTED CAN DO?

November already whaaaatt??? Ano nahitabo??? Diin ang tion makadto??? Crazy. This week was pretty good, all good smiley things even though we got punted a LOT. I'll get to it though:

The companionship is going really well! Don't get me wrong I was hecka nervous to be companions with someone who speaks only a little bit of English but she is so so cute and sweet and I'm really blessed. Whenever something bad happens she'll say "see? what _____ can do??" So the most common thing was "punted" this week. Yey. Also I'm teaching her basic English which includes but isn't limited to the word "ghetto" and "thirsty" and "crusty". only the essentials guys.

Best thing this week is that ALDRICH IS BAPTIZED!!! Seriously it was so amazing. Back in September I have a picture with him and the other basketball boys and that picture was actually the first night I had met him and he was SO mean to me. He wouldn't pray, didn't want to look at us, and when extended baptism to him he just death-stared at me and said no. Little by little though he started listening to our lessons and at the end of one lesson he told us he wanted to change. And he's changed so so much. He stopped drinking, smoking, and stopped wearing his earrings because he wanted to change and I'm just so proud of him. He's amazing! Also speaking of amazing, I've been trying to get one of our investigators to stop wearing his earrings FOREVER but he just would not take them out. We taught about the Atonement one day though and after the lesson he gAVE ME his EARRINGS!! I was so surprised and he looked at me dead in the eye and said he would never wear them again. The Atonement changes lives people. 

Not much else happened but things are doing well as usual. I love my area and the awesome people, even though they drive me crazy sometimes :) So blessed this week and I'm excited for next week!! We have Stake Conference and Elder Quentin L. Cook is coming!! Yay. 

Well have a good week everyone and talk to you next week!!!

Sister Pope

1) Sister Ducado and I by the rice fields


2) Aldrich's baptism! Seriously such an awesome experience, and our recent convert Ricky was able to baptize him. So awesome! Also fun optical illusion, you might think I'm pregnant in this picture but my shirt is so messed up. Everyone there though thought the picture was so fun and they kept calling me "busong" which is pregnant in ilonggo!! I swear I've lost weight here haha. Anyways we love Aldrich and he's great


3) Our investigator's earrings!!! Still can't believe he gave them to me


Week 13: CHRISTMAS NA

Happy Halloween everyone!!!!!

Halloween is actually tomorrow here, Nov. 1st, and it isn't really Halloween either. As long as there's candy tomorrow though I honestly won't complain what they do. So I know you're all dying to hear how enthralling, crazy, adventurous my week was so here goes nothing:

So actually really nothing happened this week but here's a little insight into the Philippines missionary struggle. So here you handwash all your clothes, which means I should wash my clothes every week because I only brought enough clothes for a little over a week. However there comes a point when you have so much to do laundry really just falls to the bottom of the list and then every morning is a battle of trying to force yourself into thinking the shirt doesn't smell thaaaat bad and then putting on LOTS of deodorant. That was probably TMI but this is missionary life people. Update: I did my laundry this morning so don't worry mom.

Funnest thing that happened this week was at the basketball boys. There are these children that work making puto (child labor?? I'm not sure they're really sweet though) so as service we helped them pour the puto into cups and then take them out when they're done cooking. All the basketball boys helped too and were listening to twenty-one pilots and I was biting my tongue SOOO hard not to sing along. Dang it Satan why is there good music you tempt me with ugh fr. 

Speaking of music they've already started playing Christmas music EVERYWHERE. Our neighbor listens to the Michael Buble christmas soundtrack every morning and you know what I won't even complain he has a voice like an angel, I just will only sing along to the songs that are in the hymn book haha. 

Well that's all of my thrilling, roller-coaster week. Oh yeah I'm progressing a ton in Ilonggo since Sister Ducado doesn't understand my English haha. She's SO sweet and so patient though so it'll be a great companionship. That's all for this week though, hope you all have a great Halloween!

Sister Pope

1) Sister Ducado helping with puto and me just taking pictures haha. There was the CUTEST baby here and I'm not allowed to hold it ugghhh torture 


2) Sam-sam all painted for all-saints day, he's the sweetest cutest little kid, sibling of Analy. He doesn't call me Aswang :)) 


3) This is called "uhling" or something which means coal, the Tobongbanua's were doing it so I offered to help and they though it was HILARIOUS that I was doing it for real. They kept on trying to take the flappy thing from me, saying my clothes would smell bad and I'd just say "wa'ay ko labot gani!!!" which means "I don't care" and they thought it was SOOO funny



Week 12: TRANSFERS

Hi Everyone!!! Maayong hapon :)

So TRANSFERS were this week! AHHHHH!!!! So my companion, Sister Tongco, has been in Bacolod 2nd ward for sEVEN MONTHS so I knew for sure she would be transferred, although I wished and prayed she wouldn't be haha she for real is the best. But I have a new companion now! Sister Ducado, super duper tiny, super sweet, and super does not know any English at all :))) Also I'm leading the area and pretty much have no idea what I'm doing but it's alright. This transfer should be fun! Anyways I'll get to the week:

So I actually was a little sick this week, nothing serious, but I would get super dizzy and then my stomach would hurt really bad but we needed to visit some investigators so we went out. The Lord's work people we stop at nothing!! haha but a lot of the investigators we visited asked if I had a "bad feeling" (sick) and they could totally tell I was out of it. One on our recent converts even told me I had "usog" which is apparently this sickness you get if somebody looks at you in a bad way. Sooo yeah I had usog this past week, probably got it from the random dude I tried to OYM with the other day haha. 

Another basketball boy has been baptized! Carl Louie :) He for real is the best. He would smoke 12 cigarettes a day but he quit within a week and then went to church every Sunday for two months before he got baptized. His desire to be baptized was just so strong and amazing, the service was so awesome. And even more awesome because recent convert Marlon baptized him!!! Yaaaay! Love those boys so much for real!!

That's pretty much all for the week, other than the fact that two strangers and one of the investigators we teach called me fat. I've lost seven pounds since I've been here ok!!! I try my best not to be offended, I'll try to embrace this part of the culture haha. Anyways, that's all for this week. Fingers crossed I survive this week! Haha (but seriously)

Sister Pope


1) My new companion Sister Ducado!!! So tiny and sweet



2) I got to see Sister Rainey and Sister Schneider!!! I met them before the mission so it was so cool to see them on the field


3) Carl's baptism!!!! Marlon baptized him!!!!! Magical night for real, they are so bakod (strong)



Sunday, October 23, 2016

Week 11: FOLLOW-UP TRAINING!!!

Maayong udto everyone!! 

Another week already come and gone. It's freaking me out I don't know how time is working here. Anyways I won't ramble I'll just get straight to it:

So we had follow-up training this week!! Yay! That means I got to see everyone in my batch or group of missionaries that came out with me. It was so great to see fam all together again and see how people have already aged like five years haha. Missions are no joke people. 

Funny story this week: I made chicken curry which was mega delicious but we crammed ourselves full of it for lunch and then went to visit a members house. At the end the brought us soda and cookies (a lot of people here do this and it's SO nice, even if you know they can't afford it they'll go to the nearest store and buy cold drinks and snacks for you) and I was already SO FULL of chicken curry but I forced myself the 7-up and cookies. Then my companion told me her stomach can't handle the soda so I drank hers too!! I seriously thought I was going to die but the Lord strengthened me to eat more haha. The power of the gospel folks! 

Cool person this week: Marvin. We have investigators that we call "mga guple" which literally translates to "out-of-nowhere's" and those are investigators that will randomly join our discussion with a progressing investigator, and then start progressing SO much more than the investigator that was our focus haha. The second day we met him he went teaching with us?? And testified in the lesson??? And he came to church on Sunday, WALKING, in the pouring rain. Where did he come from??? He seriously has just made my week and is a straight up miracle. 

That's pretty much it for this week, I finished the Book of Mormon :))) I started when I went into the MTC and finished yesterday and I feel so incredibly blessed. There are so many small and simple truths that I learned from it and I know that it's true. Why else would I be in the Philippines showering myself with bucket water haha, it's true! Really a blessed week, thank you all for your love and support, it means the world! Love you all,

Sister Pope

1) Basketball boys :) Carl, white shirt black hat, will be baptized next Saturday and Marvin is the one standing next to me. This area is sssSSOooOOOoo blessed!


2) Analy and Aleah! I love these girls so much, Analy was baptized my first Saturday I was here and we've been best buds ever since, even though she calls me "aswang" sometimes (that means monster)


3,4,5) At request of my dad, apartment pictures! The first is my bathroom, then my shower :))) Bucket showers yAY! They're really not that bad, but they're also really not that great haha. The last is just a picture of my desk, messy as usual. wa'ay ko labot!




Week 10: TAKE IT EASY



Hey everybody!!! 

So it feels like I was here yesterday writing an email to you guys about last week and here I am already writing for this next week. WHAT. Time is blowing my mind. Especially with how long every day feels haha. Anyways lets move on to my week:

Biggest shout out ever to Morgan Higdon for real!!! She sent me a package of Halloween candy and the Filipinos here LOVED IT. She's just been a huge strength to me while I've been on my mission and I'm so grateful for her. Everyone should go one of her. Haha. Except Morgan I guess is a gender neutral name so when I got a package all of the Elders were like "whhooaoaaaoaoaooa who is that??!?!?? Sister Pope has a bbOOoooOOyyfriendDD!!!". Boys are so dumb sometimes haha. Anyways THANK YOU MORGAN I LOVE YOU!

I've mentioned Ricky Boy before in previous emails and he's been going on lessons teaching with us which has been really cool. He has such strong faith and is even thinking about serving a mission. He was baptized a month ago folks! He'll get the Aaronic priesthood soon and then baptize his brother and his brother's friends. That family is just so blessed. Ok that was my nice thing about Brother Ricky... ok storytime. We were teaching with Brother Ricky when Bishop invited us over for dinner so Ricky came with us. He fed us chicken curry which is like the tastiest thing ever and I wanted to be nice so I ate my plate and then seconds. However later that night, Brother Ricky in really broken English came up to me and said I needed to "take it easy" and "concerned really for stomach of yours, it may become like large woman" :/ Never had a boy tell me to not eat before haha. It's ok though I'll just account it to the culture difference...

I realized last week I've never described my apartment and then I forgot to take picture so I'll just do it next week haha. But yes, I do take bucket showers and wash my clothes by hands. I've become pretty metal out here on the mission field. 

Oh yeah!! General Conference was amazing. Definitely learned a lot about becoming patient through afflictions and accepting the Lord's will. If you missed any of the sessions just go on LDS.org! 

Last thing, I have this bug bite on my leg that got so infected and I didn't tell the nurse about it until a couple of days ago and she said that bacteria has been eating my flesh away for two weeks :) I'll be fine I'll just get a really cool scar and tell people that I was shot in my leg or something haha. 

That's pretty much it for this week! Thank you everyone for your love and support, it's really appreciated by me. I feel so recharged every week! Halong kamo kag indi kamo malipat nga palangga kita sang Dios :) 

Mga palangga,

Sister Pope

1) Sister Tongco's birthday party. I ate so much spaghetti I didn't think I was going to make it home haha


2) The Tobongbanua's! This family is amazing. Such cute kids too


3) The basketball boys. This picture is just funny, we said Marlon looks like a young japanese girl haha


4) Pretty common view of us! It's always raining here but I've got waterproof shoes so its cool


5) Basketball boys again! Ricky and Marlon will receive the Aaronic preisthood next Sunday and then baptize the two other boys, Carl and Aldrich, pretty soon. Aldrich fell off a tricycle yesterday while it was moving though and totally destroyed his arm :(( he'll get better soon though


Week 9: INDI KAMO SULOD



Good week everyone!!! Hope you all are doing well.

This was another crazy and awesome week in the Philippines. The people here seriously make me laugh so much. When it rains they all but plastic bags on their heads. HA. Anyways moving on to the week:

The basketball boys are doing amazing, more and more of them join us in the lessons each time we come and they're so respectful. They're also really patient with me in trying to teach them and even help me with words I don't know. It's kind of rough because they don't understand me when I speak English but they also don't understand me when I speak Ilonggo. It's good though because they're nice haha. Every time they want to share a thought they have they always are so respectful and call us the full "sister", most people here just say "sis" which is also cute. Every time we visit them they want us to sing "Battle Hymn of the Republic", they love that song SO much it's awesome. We call them the Hallelujah boys now haha.

One of the basketball boys and recent converts (baptized beginning of September) has been going out teaching with us. His name is Ricky and his faith just blows me away. Maybe because he talks so fast when he's testifying but also because he has such an amazing spirit about him. I have to convince myself he's not a better missionary than me haha... the language will come though. 

Our investigator Gary was baptized on Saturday! He is seriously so golden. He's so respectful to us and the Elders and he has so much strength and knowledge in the gospel. He also thinks I'm hecka stupid since I can't speak Ilonggo but we communicate using caveman English haha. When we taught him Word of Wisdom though when I got here three weeks ago we committed him to stop and he hasn't smoked since. He just has such a desire to change.. it's amazing! 

Also when we go to teach him his nephew is there and he knows that if we're there, the TV will be turned off so we came a couple days ago and as we were walking up to Gary's house we were like "tag balay! Maayong gab-i!!" and the nephew opened the door, screamed "indi kamo magsulod!!" (something like you don't come in) and started freaking. out. Kicking, screaming, crying; the works. But eventually he just ran outside to pout while we taught Gary haha WHOOPS sorry kid but you are the spirit of contention in one tiny body.

Not a lot of weird stuff happened this week, other than the usual creepy old man that wants to shake my hand for a solid minute... I went on splits with another American girl here which is really interesting, being two white people walking across a dirt road in the middle of the Philippines. Hopefully this next week will be good as well. I love and miss all of you!!

Sister Pope

1) The best family ever! The dad and daughter will be baptized later this month and their faith is just so amazing. Ricky came to teach with us during this lesson, he for real is the bomb. Future missionary hopefully!!



2) Kim, Gary and Kyla. Kim and Kyla are Gary's fellowshippers!! For real, don't underestimate children. They're the reason he started being interested in the church and they'd help us teach lessons too.


3) Us with Gary! He isn't smiling which is WEIRD, he's always cheesin but I guess the sun was hecka bright


4) More of the Tobongbanua family. We made spaghetti for the kids and this is just them munching on it. For real the cutest kids.


Sunday, October 2, 2016

Week 8: ULAN ULAN GO AWAY

Hey everyone!!! 

Another crazy week in the Philippines. Transitioning from the MTC to the field was crazy (as in the whole they-didn't-teach-me-that-language-in-the-MTC is VERY real haha) but the people are amazing and my companion is great. I'll just go over the highlights of this week:

TONS of rain (ulan) here. Yesterday we had our umbrellas and were walking through the rain and NO jeepneys would stop for us so we had to walk so far in the rain. We were totally soaked when we got home and had to shower because the water from the roads is hecka nasty. 

Food here for me is I either love it or it's really... out there. Menudo and pancit are amazing and so yummy. I also tried dinuguan.. pigs blood.. and it actually wasn't bad. Wouldn't eat it again though haha. Also this is random but you see tons of people here snacking on the same brand of saltine crackers, "SkyFlakes". Like literally everyone you see everywhere is eating these things. I have an old lady in our ward that gives me a package of them whenever we see her.

Other random things.. there's a lot of lizards called "Tiki's" and my companion is absolutely terrified of them. Every time she sees one I have to swat it with a broom until it'll go away, it's so funny. I've thought of maybe a prank to do on her but she's too nice for pranks haha. 

I'll include a picture of my favorite people (not my favorite-I love everyone but... my favorite). We call them the "basketball boys". They live around a lot of bad influence but the two oldest in the photos are recent converts from almost about two months ago and the three others are siblings and friends, all investigators. The one in the back with the pink shirt is Marlon and he's so gentle and respectful and always gives us these squishy rice things called "puto", so yum. 

So that's about it, thank you everyone for your emails and support, believe me it is greatly needed and appreciated. Have an awesome week everyone!! Until next week!

Sister Pope

1) Some of the crazy primary/young women that help us teach one of our investigators. They always are touching my arm and playing with my hair, so cute.



2) The best people!! Marlon and Ricky are spiritual giants and great examples to the other boys that live in their area.


Week 7: BACALOD!!!!

Kamusta kamo!!!

So I'm finally here in the Philippines at long last!! There's a lot to do still today but I want to just share what the Philippines is like. So everyone here calls me Sister Barbie, I don't even know. The children on the street will run up to me, say something really fast in Ilonggo and then put my arm and say "awwww puti gid!!".. puti means white. Everyone, like EVERYONE here says how "guapa" I am but it's really just because of my really white skin. But, it's a great confidence booster haha. 

So I have my trainer, Sister Tongco, and she's seriously so amazing! She is a great teacher, a great friend and just so sweet. We even have the same first name! We both freaked when we found out haha. Our investigator Analy, 11, was baptized on Saturday and she's just so sweet. I'll include a picture of her and her parents. Her mom is a member and her dad is an investigator. The people here really are prepared to hear the gospel, it's incredible.

The members here are amazing, we have more member present lessons by far than other lessons, it's amazing! Like a big family. Bro. Lotayo gives us TONS of fruit all the time and gives us free rides on his tryke to appointments. 
Oh yeah, trykes and jeepneys. Lets just say that the traffic here is literally insane and I'm thankful I'm alive haha. 12 people on one scooter = indi maayo (not good). 

To finish I'll try and compile a quick list of what Filipinos love: roosters, sweeping (at 5 am...and sweeping nothing haha), sweet spaghetti, karaoke, and smiling. They're great. Although I;m hard on myself, I'm hoping this next week will be good. Love you all!

Sister Pope

​​​​​​1) Investigator, Samuel, with his wife and recent convert, Eva. Both have great faith and are really humble. I'll try and take a picture of their house next week


2) The rice fields here! Classic Philippines


3) Analy and my trainer, Sister Tongco. Both are amazing!


4) My two day companions, Elder Okerland and Elder Lee. Awesome companions haha, I miss them a lot​​​​​​​​