Thursday, October 29, 2015

Week 63 - Giving Blessings and Receiving a Blessing from Elder Switzer


I did get my birthday package. Thank you. Sorry about the delay. We couldn't email because of the Typhoon and because it's been a supppper busy week. Last Monday we had a district activity and then a member called and asked for a blessing. We didn't even end up having time to shop. Then on Tuesday we had to clean the apartment before work, because a General Authority is here and he checked a couple of apartments.
The General Authority was Elder Schwitzer. He spoke last General Conference. Yesterday he also picked a couple people to interview. So I ended up being one of them, and he ended up giving me a blessing. So that's a pretty good story huh?
Anyways yesterday after our zone conference with Elder Schwitzer, we went to one of our progressing investigators, Grace Flores. After our lesson about what our purpose is on earth, her dad came in. Her dad isn't a member he was also pretty drunk but he talked for about 10 minutes straight about how he wanted us to go there everyday to fill Grace's mind with good things. It was pretty funny. It was funny too because he would ask us questions and then when we were about to answer he would interrupt us and just say "wait wait I'm not finished." and then we would explain why he was asking it and then after about two or three minutes he would forget the question he asked and then after he was done he just walked out of the room. So now we are going to go to Grace's house everyday.
Also things you could include in the package: Maybe T-Shirts that say Utah or anything that is cool memorabilia from Utah. Also if you guys could grab some of those metal oil vials that would be great! I can't find any here at the Manila Temple.
Anyways I was able to interview with President and he said that I was doing well and that he's going to give me another special assignment and then in my last area I'll train. Honestly I don't even want to train. I keep telling him I don't want to train, but I'll do whatever the Lord wants me to do.
I love my area, comp, and the other elders in my house, but there's just not a lot to do here in Cauayan. There are also a tonnnnnnnn of new missionaries here. This is where a lot of people train. I'm actually only the third oldest missionary here in my zone, so I guess I'm not really the oldest veteran here :P
The one sister from back in the MTC emailed me. The one that I played russian egg roulette with. She's just about to finish her mission :P It's crazy too because sister Hamblin goes home in December as well. I'm getting closer as well. I think I only have 8 months left or something like that :p
That's all I have for the last 2 weeks though. Take care

I love y'all

Cauayan Zone with Elder and Sister Schwitzer

Batchmates, Elder Einfeldt, Elder Lott, & Elder Swensen

Elder Swensen with his tatay, Elder Bautista

Mission friends, Elder Swensen, Glassie, Seuli, and Enuake

Cauayan Zone Activity

Zone Activity

Monday, October 19, 2015

Week 62 - Typhoon Kappu - No word from Elder Swensen


Friday, October 16, 2015

Typhoon Kappu
As you may be aware there is a tropical typhoon, Kappu, heading towards the Philippines. Our missionaries have been alerted to prepare for a storm. Their preparations will include but are not limited to preparing for possible flooding, checking their 72 hour kits, having emergency cash in small bills, and charging their cell phone.  We have a line of communication in place. 

The storm is expected to make landfall at about 2 AM our time on Sunday morning, October 18 at a category 4.  It looks to change to a category 3 as it moves inland.  The track of the storm right now has it entering at about the center point of our mission around Cauayan, and then traveling through the center northward.  We expect wind, rain, flooding, and probable power outages. When the storm has passed and all missionaries are accounted for, we will let you know.

We use a site called Weather Underground to follow the tracking of the storm. I will post updates as possible on the FB page as well as the blog.  Be aware that I won't be able to do that if we lose power.

Thank you for your prayers--for the missionaries and for the Filipino people.  This is harvest time and there are many whose rice crops are not quite ready for harvesting.  We are anxious for them.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Typhoon Update
Sunday Morning, 7 AM:  The storm made landfall at about 2 AM in the coastal area of Dinadiawan/Baler at a category 4 and is now slowly making its way westward and then will turn north.  It came in further south and is expected to be over the southern part of our mission today as a category 3.  It is predicted to weaken as it turns northward over the next two days, but we still expect to continue to have heavy rain, strong winds, flooding and loss of power.  The storm is very slow moving.  I will post another update later today.  Thank you for your prayers!
Sunday, October 18, 2015
Sunday Evening Typhoon Update
The typhoon came ashore north of Baler in the Auroroa Province about 2 AM on Sunday morning as a category 4 storm.  Over 10,000 people were evacuated from the areas nearby.  This is not a part of our mission, but we share boundaries here with the Angeles Mission.  All of our missionaries that were in flood-prone areas were evacuated Saturday afternoon.  The storm caused flooding, landslides and overflowing reservoirs.

All of our missionaries are safe and accounted for.  The storm is moving slowly, but has decreased in intensity.  We still expect periods of rain and flooding in places over the next 2-3 days before Lando officially exits the Philippines.  There are still some power outages and there will be some clean-up, but we are grateful that the damage was very limited in our mission.  Thank you again for your prayers!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Week 61 - Transferred to Cauayan


So I have been transferred to Cauayan 2-B.  My new comp is Elder Cruzit.  This is his last cycle and so President wanted me to be his last companion, but he said I could still train after this cycle. This cycle is super weird though. We have a General Authority coming and so we had to adjust our transfer schedule. So this cycle is only 4 weeks long, and the next cycle will be 8 weeks long. After that it will be back to normal.

The apartment here is really nice though. In the apartment is the 2 Zone leaders. E. Seuli and E. Treyes. But Elder Seuli will be going home too after this cycle so I will get a new zone leader. My DL is E. Castillo. I don't know where the mission pres goes to church, but he attended the General Conf. with us.  SO yyeah.. The STLs are in our branch as well.  There are a ton of new missionaries in this zone, after E. Cruzit and Seuli go home I will be the oldest missionary in this zone. Which is really crazy to think about. I only have about 8 months left. Time is going way fast here.

So if ya'll want to send a package I'm game with it. Honestly what you should send though is maybe memorabilia that you can only find in Utah. Just so I can give something cool to my companion at the time. Other than that you could just send a bunch of different candies. I don't really miss any foods too much that you guys need to send. Maybe, like mac and cheese or something like that. That would be nice.

Elder Cruzit and Elder Swensen
Roommates and ZL's, Elder Treyes and Elder Seuli

Elder Cruzit,Valen Castillo, & Elder Swensen
Map showing Cauayan, the home of the mission.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Week 60 - Last week in Ramon


So I am getting transferred. Both me and E. Manalili will get transferred. What will probably happen is a zone leader will step down and train in the area. I want to get transferred anywhere but Cauayan or Ilagan. Honestly those are like the 2 most boring areas in the entire mission. I wouldn't mind going back to Tuguegarao or to Roxas or even Alicia, but honestly anything is fine with me. Other than that, things with Danica are going great and I'm pretty sure she'll get baptized by the following missionaries. This was our last week and we worked way hard. We got 65+contacts and 30+lessons. So we're leaving the area in pretty good shape.