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Monday, July 25, 2011

Week 39: Elder Balaich's dying days

DAD: Hi! Just realized you were on...been working on your letter! How are you?
AJ: Life is good! Work is good! Transfers is on Thursday. Your letter was hilarious, by the way. I can just imagine your Park City experiences and the family reunion seems pretty funny, too. I wish I could been there for the 3-on-3 tourney.
MOM: By the way, Dad has a headache so I'm typing all the correspondence today. DAD says: It would have been fun to have you there at the reunion. We only had time for 2 games in the 3 on 3. We won the first 10-1 and then we played all these young guys that were really good players, but they were no match for Jonny's 3 pointers and my post game. We beat them 11-5. The problem is, me and Jonny are going to keep getting older and slower and these 15-year olds are going to get stronger and faster, so I better enjoy it while I can. Plus, I don't know if you'll be any good when you get back since you only play with short brown people … ha ha.
AJ: Hah! Ya, so Tuesday and Wednesday I will go on splits and then on Thursday get a new companion and head back to Aritao. We had interviews with President Carlos last week and he will tell you who your new companion will be a lot of the times. But I couldn't get anything out of him. At least the work is really good and Aritao is an awesome and beautiful area.

MOM/DAD: How come you go on splits right before you lose your comp? That seems weird. Especially if you are close. It seems like you would want to spend the last couple of days together. And your area sounds really beautiful. I forgot how pretty it is up in Northern Utah. We live in the rugged desert and I had forgotten how pretty the mountains are. I miss it sometimes.
AJ: Ya, I love it here. It's like 100 million times better than my last area.
Well, what happens is, on Tuesday we go to Bambang and split for half the day. It's hard to get rides at night, so we just start the split a little earlier, plus we don't know their area, so we just work two companionships in the area on Tuesday. Then Elder Balaich and Pincock (who are both going home) will go to Cauayan on Wednesday. They leave at 4 a.m. In Cauayan, they have a career workshop and Testimony Meeting, plus dinner and their final interview with the president. I will stay with Pincock's companion and work all day Wednesday, then on Thursday morning we will head up to Cauayan and get new companions.
MOM/DAD: You look very serious in your pix. You look skinny too. Are you losing weight? Looks like a nice bunch of kids you are hanging with. You enjoying all the other missionaries? So are you sad to be sending him Elder Balaich off? Seems like you two have gotten along pretty well.Also, is Pincock the name of the very first blogger stuff we found before you went on your mission? The name sounds familiar.
AJ: Ya, I am pretty sure. He is pretty cool. He is my zone leader. Yeah, Balaich is pretty awesome. I figure it can only go downhill from here. Maybe I need to be more optimistic, but it was a good cycle.
DAD: Do new missionaries come in every transfer or just sometimes?
AJ: There have been new missionaries every transfer that I have seen. One transfer it was only Filippinos though. But yeah, pretty much every time.
MOM/DAD: Well, then, maybe you'll be training a newbie.
AJ: Definitely a possibility ... Who knows? It's all speculation at this point.
MOM: (10:30 p.m. Utah time) Dad must not be feeling well … he's asleep! Poor thing. I guess I wore him out this week!
AJ: Wow good one! I gotta run. Love ya lots. If you can think of anything you want for Christmas, let me know.
MOM: Love you too!!!! XOXOX

Hey family,

Life is good! We had a great week of work and saw some cool progression from some of our investigators.

The coolest thing that happened was the faith this one lady showed. A few weeks ago we were buying stuff in the Palengke (outdoor market) and this lady named Emma (about 50-years old) came up to us and asked what we were doing. And then she just gave us her address and stuff. We have been over there a couple times but have only been able to teach her once because we didn't have another female there (as per mission policy). She said she really wanted to go to church, but she works in the Palengke and Sunday is market day (basically the market has way more people and stuff there). Her boss said there is no way he would let hertake the day off. But she told us to come by before church and she would see if she could go. So we did and we brought recent convert Sister Betty to help fellowship. They became instant best friends.

Anyway, we got there and her boss was adamant that she could not have the day off on market day. So she said to wait outside and she would be right there. Then, as we were walking away, she just said she needed to go to church and that they can deal with it and she grabbed her stuff and ran off and came to church (wow!). Then she had an awesome time at church and later that day we went to see her. She said her boss wasn't mad at all! I don't know if that's true or not, but that's what she said. And then she told us how she just seemed to be lost in life and at church that day she felt she had found her life again. Pretty cool story and quite a show of faith! She really seems to have been prepared by the Lord. So we will see what happens. I wish our other investigator that got a job at the Palengke last week would at least ask for a day off so she could go to church, too.

Another fairly new investigator is Sister Jemah. She's a young mother that we found tracting about a month ago. She has now come to church two times in a row and has loved it and been praying and asking great questions. She is doing really good. She is really nice and we feel she will be baptized. She said a while back that she had a dream about 2 white people teaching her the gospel. So she was really surprised when we found her and she asked us how we had found her house. She has a great desire to learn the gospel. It's an awesome feeling to be a part of the Lord's work.

We also found a sweet hanging bridge (see pictures) in the fields this week. It was totally epic Indiana Jones style.

I love my mission and I love being a part of sharing the gospel with others. I know the Church is true, that Joesph Smith really saw God the Father and the Son and that because of it we have the fulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that our Redeemer lives!

Love Ya all!


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