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Monday, June 11, 2012

Week 85: Heating Up in Roxas

Roxas Zone on a p-day field trip
AJ and his Dad chatted through on AJ's p-day.
AJ: Hey pops, waz up?
Dad: Hey man, how are you this fine day?!
AJ: Pretty good. I just read your letter and Mom's and I realized I've been gone a long time – everything is changing!
Dad: Yes, life is a lot different from when you left. But it's a lot the same, too. We haven't moved and may not do it at all. I think the biggest change will be the growth of your siblings. They all got ginormous!
AJ: And before you know it, they'll all be on missions too. Katie and Holly look way different! Hey, when do you start your new job?
Dad: I start tomorrow, 8:30 a.m.
AJ: What kind of radio gigs are you doing for them? Like a sports minute kind of a thing or what?
Dad: Yeah, sports updates and contests and stuff and then games in the Fall.
AJ: Your job on the website ( is gonna keep ya pretty busy right? Are you still in charge of updating utahpreps?
Dad: Well, Utahpreps will cease to exist and I will be updating and doing all those stats on their site now.
AJ: Well, that's kinda sad your baby died though.
Dad: Well, it's been on life support since the recession hit, but u r right. I look at it as I am still doing it, but actually getting a regular paycheck for it.
AJ: Will you still be able to write for the Desnews occasionally or not anymore?
Dad: I never asked about that, but I think I still can. I will just have to make it different stories probably. I wrote pretty much every week in football season for DesNews last year.
AJ: Any way you could end up getting a radio show again?
Dad: Not in the morning. They do political talk in the morning. They offered me an afternoon show, but I didn't want it. It would have been at 5 p.m. Yuck!
AJ: Too bad you couldn't get like 12 or early afternoon.
Dad: It'll be good still. There are still lots of opportunities to be heard in many different ways with my new company. Hey, I gotta get some sleep, big day tomorrow. I look forward to reading your letter in the morning. I love you son. Thanks for being a great son and an example!
AJ: Love ya Pops!! I am taking off pretty quick too!!!

Hey family,

How is it going? So I hear it's getting real hot over there. It's super hot here as well. So this week has been packed. We had Zone Conference in Illagan on Tuesday. The whole focus was about being worthy of and obtaining the spirit. It was really good and I learned some great stuff.

Wednesday we went to Cauayan and had ZLC. It was also great and we had some chili and homemade bread and stuff. It was great. We learned a lot of great stuff as well. I wrote down a lot of things I really liked, but left it at home and I can't remember off the top of my head what to share other than it was really refreshing and motivated and made you want to do better and work harder and stuff. Also President Carlos had a sweet book of Vince Lomba
rdi quotes. I wrote down one of them I really liked.

He said, "Any man's finest hour, his greatest fulfillment to all he holds dear -- is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle, victorious. Leave no regrets on the field!"

It goes along with what Pres. Carlos always says about "No regrets" (maybe that's where he got it from). Anyway, I am so thankful for the things that have happened and the things I've learned on my mission. It's been the hardest thing ever but the best. It's been amazing. I've seen so many miracles. So with the time left I want to leave it all on the field, so hopefully when I see you again I will be totally and completely exhausted in every aspect :)

This week this couple we have been teaching since January finally got married (see the pix). It's a big step and we were really glad to see it happen. Brother Mobydick is pretty cool and still has a drinking problem but he is really trying to change. The wedding was pretty cool. I think it's the second wedding I've been to on my mission. It was held in the church. It was really good. Mobydick's family put some Catholic stuff on them during the ceremony and it was kind of weird. The branch president was really surprised and wasn't sure what to do. He just basically said at our church we don't believe in that stuff but whatever if you want to put it on them that's fine. Elder Shaner gave a really great talk and then the Shaners played a song duet with their piano and violin. There was a ton of food as well, so that is always a good thing.

One of our investigators, I am pretty sure I told you about her, is a mother maybe Mom's age. After we taught her the first time (her husband was the first one we taught, she had been in Manila back in the day) she came to church and brought her kids. The really amazing part is that their house is super far away. It's like a 15 min van ride, then you get out and walk for 20 mins in the rice fields. Well she just came yesterday for the third time I think and was earlier than most members (her house is further than all of their's too). Their family has a baptismal date and we have been teaching them as a family every time, The dad is a really nice guy, but he hasn't been able to come to church yet.

On Sunday afternoon (usually our most busy teaching time), we could find no one to teach. We went though the plans and then the back up plans and then the back up plans to the back up plans and then finally tracting and we couldn't find anyone that wanted to listen to us. After almost 3 hours of working and not teaching a single lesson we decided to go visit the Elder's quorum president (who hadn't been at church earlier that day). We went there and talked to them for a minute and then Elder Velez asked them if they had a referral. Brother couldn't think of anyone but then his wife came in and we asked her and she said she did! One of their employees that also lives with them was her referral and he let us teach him. He's really awesome and had great questions for us, is interested and is letting us come back to teach him again. It was great. I gotta say one of the most faith testing things is just having all your plans fall through and trying to do everything you can to make something happen. There have been a ton of times on my mission like that but it's such a great feeling after you find out where the Lord had been trying to lead you and it's so great to see stuff like that happen.

Well, I gotta run, but I know the church is true. I know the Savior loves us and is with us through all we are doing. He truly labors by our side. I testify of that. I love you and have a great week!

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