Monday, April 20, 2015

An Ocean Baptism!

Hey mom!

Actually life is still good in Lopez. Our baptism this weekend was a success He is a solid member and probably will end up being a really good leader in the church. One thing I have had a hard time with here is how many people don't care about being on time for things. Our convert is very strict on time which is uncommon out here in the Philippines. We told the branch presidency and all of the auxiliaries 1PM and no one was even there to open the gate at the chapel for us until 1:45PM. When the church was finally open, we found out that there was no power because of a brown out and the baptismal font poured out straight mud almost so we moved it all to the dagat (ocean). I will send some good photos of it all. Elder Acain preformed the baptism. 

My companion (Elder Acain) is actually from Mindanao so he speaks Bisaya. He is 20 years old and will be going home with me in October so we are batch cool. He is a really good elder and I am glad to be his companion. 

I feel bad for Dad. He was busy enough as it was before he got called to be Bishop. Oh well, a calling is a calling and that means it is from God and that also means he can do it ha-ha. That is really sad though about Grandma Pat. Don't worry I sent her a pretty good email. She actually emailed me and updated me on everything. I will definitely keep her in my prayers. 

Wow! I am glad you are having a good time at your new job. I am super happy for you. It will be pretty fun to hang out with Devonie every day! She emailed me and said that she is super excited to work with you in the visitors center. 

I can't wait to see what Parker and all of the little cousins are like after the mission. He (along with everyone else) will be so much bigger and older! It will be really cool to see how much everyone has changed. 

Well life out here is still going OK other then it is so hard to get new investigators because literally everyone out here has been taught by the missionaries before. We are so well known it isn't even funny. I would suggest closing the area for a good 6 months in order to let the area rest. Just like in real farms after using the soil for a long period of time it needs to rest a season. 

Hopefully my package arrives in the next week. Well love you lots and have a good week!

Elder Nielson 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Birthday Greetings from the Philippines!!

Hey! You had a birthday party without me. It is kind of cool that Dad got made bishop on my birthday! I will try to get you a letter to the ward. Well I am glad that you were able to have a nice big party out there. I am a bit sad though. Those birthday greeting videos you tried to send me won't open on my computer for some reason. Oh well, I will just have to live with it. 

How is everyone doing back at home. Well, I am doing fine out here. I actually had kind of a birthday party. A member found out that it was my birthday and they ended up preparing a huge feast for me. I feel kind of bad though because I know that they are not all that well off. I made sure to thank them a billion times. I will send some pictures of the feast. Because we just watched General Conference yesterday and not last week, the whole zone was down in our area for the weekend. That was really fun as well. Some of the elders even came to the little birthday party that the member had set up for me. 

Well conference was awesome. I really liked the talk by Elder Holland. One thing that I learned, coming out of his talk was how in order to be saved, we first have to exert every ounce of energy to leap as high as we can and only then will the saving hands of the Savior reach out and rescue us. Those of us who give up will just fall and even more interesting, those who don’t wish to fall but aren't willing to exercise their faith will eventually fall as well. 

Well it was a really good weekend and I had good time. To top it all off one of our investigators out here just passed his baptismal interview and he will be baptized next weekend. 

Well Love you all lots. I will remember all of you in my prayers. Good luck with your new calling Dad! Take good care of Grandma Pat and send her my love.

Elder Nielson

 No idea what's going on here!

 My birthday party!

 The birthday boy!!

Birthday spread!! Yum!!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Survived another Typhoon - It was "Ampow"!!

Hey don't you guys worry about me ha-ha. I am doing just fine out here in Lopez. The storm didn't hit us at all. It went north of us and moved into northern Luzon region. The storm ended up being what I call ampaw or in English puffed up. It got super cloudy but that's it, nothing else happened. Anyways we really didn't even get any rain out here. For a couple of days we had a low air pressure right over top of us and that was pretty scary. We definitely don't want a low air pressure area to suck in a huge super typhoon haha. We hardly got any rain even. So we are doing just fine. This might be bad but I want to see one more big storm before I leave the Philippines. 

I actually didn't get my birthday package yet :( Oh well, President Mangum is coming out on the 21st or so to do zone interviews so I should get my package then. 

So I am not with Elder Aoina which was the Polynesian zone leader that was going home. I am with Elder Acain. We are in the same batch going home. He is a Visayan Elder from Mindanao - he is super cool and a really good teacher. 

Thats great that you and Dad went to the Calgary Temple on Friday! And then my favorite place to eat! SmashBurgers! When I get back home we can all go to SmashBurgers! I love that place!

Well I am doing just fine out here in Lopez. The problem out here is the leadership but we are working on that. We had Mission Leadership Conference last Thursday which was pretty cool I guess. We focused a lot on the difference between sin and weaknesses. It is always cool to go to the MLC and get taught by President Mangum. It is probably the best part about being a zone leader. 

Well I hope everything is going good back at home. Love you all.

Elder Nielson