Mission Call

Mission Call

Dropping CJ off at the MTC!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

September 20, 2010

Well i sure do have responsibility!! Im in the office doing the flight plans!! What a shocker... i know! I couldnt even believe it... im the first sister in the office. Ok... joke-lang! Im not in the office... that would be funny... a sister in the office. Ok for reals tho. My new phase of the mission is being a trainer! Yep i have an anak (child in cebuano). Her name is Sister Larsen. She is from Orem and went to BYU for 3 years. She speaks french so sometimes she gets cebuano and french mixed up haha. She is amazing. I feel so blessed to have such a great greeny in my hands. I have been praying for her! She loves to run!! What a blessing... we are going running every morning!! We have been together 3 days now and we have done good. It makes things more difficult both being american. I am so used to having a filipina and if i dont understand at least my companion can. I have been blessed to have been able to understand the concerns of all the investigators and members. What a gift the Holy Ghost is. Im learning to listen much better!! I feel like there is a HUGE weight on my shoulders but i also really feel the help of the Savior making it lighter! I cant even explain how much help and guidance i am receiving. The filipinos are now trying to trick me with fair prices and such but i reassure them that im not dumb and i know how it works. Its funny to see their faces as i speak cebuano. I love being a missionary.

Sorry the email is short but i gotta be obedient and be an example to my anak!! I love her!

And i love you all!!

Sister Carissa Jones

Mom's Personal email...
Im SO excited for Jordan! I sent him a letter last week! Tell him congrats and i expect a letter from him since he has lots of time before he leaves. Even tho it is a while this will give him time to prepare and study!!

Love that the chiefs are doing so good! Elder Stringham and i have little arguments about the chiefs and broncos...

I bet the lunch was so fun! So many of the missionaries have talked about it with me cause all their moms loved it!

WOW 150 burpees... what more can i say!

Thanksgiving will be so special with all you together! Im really happy!

Love you so much! You are the best!!

Gugma Daghan

September 13, 2010

Hello Family!

The work is going great!! We are so excited for the baptism of the Gadil couple tomorrow!! Ivy has been so nervous about bearing her testimony after the baptism so she has been practicing while she is home with the kids... haha. She says she is good to go now... she isnt nervous. I love this family! We have so much fun teaching and laughing with them.
We had a family home evening at the Gadil's house and two member families came and one investifator family. Filipinos play the funnest, most creative games! I cant wait to come home and play them with you! Also, if you lose you have to perform a talent so be working on your talents! It was so much fun and we had a great lesson on the Tree of Life vision. I encourage you to read and study the vision.... this is the scripture of the week... 1 Nephi chapters 8 and 11.
We taught them also about temples on tuesday and asked them how they felt after the lesson and they said "EXCITED!" They also want both S. Barroca and I to be there for their temple sealing next year. They have been prepared. They are a testimony to me that this really is the work of the Lord. My calling is big but i love it! You know they say... "go big or go home!"

We found some very talkative new investigators. Its a little difficult for me to follow them at times which makes me scared to possibly not have S. Barroca as a companion next week if she gets transferred. But then i just remind myself that this is the work of the Lord and whatever im called to do i can do. I need to always accept and magnify my calling!

So Sister Barroca wanted to go jogging this week. Her goal was to go every day but after the first day she was super sore and every morning didnt want to go... haha. At least i got to get out and run once. It felt REALLY good! Maybe ill be able to convinve my next companion to run with me in the mornings. Pray for me to have a athletic companion :)

Last night had fun learning some new games and playing snakes and ladders... i lost 9 times but won once! I love learning from the little kids here in the Philippines! They are the best help!

Well i love you and am praying for you all!

Sister Carissa Jones

September 6, 2010

Well the work is amazing! This is the last week of this transfer and we are almost positive that i will be getting a new companion but will be staying in Albuera. I will REALLY miss S. Barroca! President has been talking with me a lot about my cebuano and if i can teach all the lessons so i might become a senior companion. We will see... we will find out next tuesday (the 14th).

Happiest news is that we will have a baptism on the 14th! We just got permission from President to move the baptism up of the Gadil couple (Glen and Ivy) so that it will be before transfers. They really want S. Barroca to witness their baptism. They are the most amazing investigators and were really prepared by the Lord. This last week we have been teaching them all the laws and commandments. They accepted the Word of Wisdom, Law of Chastity and Law of Tithing with NO hesitation! They already know that the church is true and are willing to do anything to bring their lives in line with the gospel doctrines. I love them SO much! Their 3 little kids are just adorable and love us... maybe its cause we always bring them candy tho... haha. Glen bore his testimony yesterday and it was by far the best one given... and there were some great testimonies given. He said to anyone investigating to not doubt because its true! I dont think there are words to describe the feelings you get from missionary work! I think about the language we will speak in the eternities and i think only that language contains these kinds of words!

We have some other good new couples and families. One really cool experience this week... We were punted and so decided to go somewhere where we hadnt planned to go... none of the investigators or members were home so as we were walking out people were calling to us. At first we didnt pay attention because this is nothing new... someone is always yelling "sisters!" or "mormons!" But then a girl came walking behind us and told us that they wanted us to go meet them. Of course we decided at that time that we needed to go meet them. It was a mother, Gina, and she has been taught by missionaries before a long time ago. She was beyond excitment to meet us! We got this burst of energy (remember we had just been punted multiple times). We didnt even have to invite her to church... she said she would be there before we even said anything about it. And she did show up to church! And brought a friend that is interested in the church as well! WOW!! Miracle do happen and Heavenly Father knows exactly where we are at all times! I love being a missionary!!

Scripture of the week... Ecclessiates 7:16 and 7:3 (just some funny ones that Sister Barroca and i read... we had a good laugh... hmmm)

Sister Carissa Jones

August 30, 2010

Work is great!

This week we didnt do much teaching because we had a Leadership Training Meeting. There is new curriculum from the apostles and a few missionaries in all the areas are being trained on it. My comp and i were invited. It was a spiritual retreat! Three days packed of knowledge and the Spirit! Cant even explain how great they were. Ive never done so many rold plays in my entire life!! It was fun to get to know some of the missionaries in the mission better! And our assistants right now are amazing... love them both! Each night we went out in Sogod (thats where the training was) and visited members and investigators. The cebuano was a little different but it was fun to learn and adapt to. you change the y's to j's... kinda funny. We had some great visits and really relied on the Spirit!
Back in our area Sat night we applied our trainings to one of out investigator families that we love so much! The Gadil family. The Spirit was INCREDIBLE! and that experience has changed me and my mission. Best lesson and feeling i have ever felt! And they kept their commitment and came to church even tho they have many persecutions from family!

Also at the trainings, President pulled me out to do a mini interview. He asked how my language is and if i can teach all the lessons in cebuano. There are a few i still need to work on so he told me to study and practice those. He also ask if i was ready to step to the next level and ready to take responsibility. I am nervous but i will do what the Lord calls me to do. All week he said he was impressed with my language and thinks im better than i realize. This gave me great hope! But i still have a long way to go... pray for me!

Scripture of the week.... Moroni 6:8

Gugma Kaajo
Sister Jones

August 23, 2010

Scripture of the week... This morning i read Mosiah 24 and remembered how much i love that chapter!
Highlight of the week... We were treading through a field and it was SUPER muddy... i lost my shoe... twice! haha. I love the mission! When things get tough the best thing to do is laugh!! We laugh a lot! haha
Sister Jones

Some of Mom's personal email....
I love those really spiritual uplifting days on the mission. When you really feel the love of Heavenly Father, nothing is better. We really do belong to the one and only true church of Christ. How blessed we are!
normal week of lessons is 30 maybe. Every transfer is 6 weeks. this is my 2nd transfer here in albuera and my 4th transfer of the mission. The next transfer will start Sept 13. and then every 6 weeks from there, so you can keep track. I dont wear long sleeves to escape the sun.. i love the sun. I wear them on colder days... in america these "colder days" wouldnt be cold but they are cold here... haha. My body is learning to be filipino! haha. Im not that incredibly dark cause we are for the most part we are teaching and covered from the sun. The bugs are in abunance so they are great... im learning to deal with them better and come to terms with having not so attractive legs.
Gugma Daghan
Sister Carissa Jones

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

August 16, 2010

Well it was a great week! i think i say that every week but oh well... its truth!

Sigi so... we were busy and we are already seeing blessings from our constant go go go! We taught 43 lessons this week! WOW!! And 7 investigators were at church, not counting the 7 kids that belong to the families that are under 8yrs old. Sunday was a good day and a great testimony to me of this work. Saturday morning was a struggle moment for some reason but Heavenly Father picked me right up and answered my prayers that i didnt think He was answering. What a loving Father in heaven we have!!

We have a new family investigating. We have only had 3 lessons and the love i feel for them already is undescribable! They are the family with the little girl who calls me a real life barbie doll. We had a great lesson with them this week. They have been reading the Book of Mormon together and praying! Glen even told us the story they read. They are awesome and we promised that God WILL answer their prayers! I have no doubt about that. The promise in Moroni 10 is 100% true! Its worked for me and God doesnt love me more than He does His other children. Sharing my testimony about these principles and how they have worked in my own personal life is one of the best ways to bring the Spirit.
So, they werent at church, which they said they would come so at 930 we rode out to their place to pick them up. Glen (the dad) was sitting reading the Book of Mormon, which put a smile on our faces... Since they had woken up late they were shy to come to church late. We told them it was ok and we would help them get the 3 little kids ready to go... They wouldnt let us help but said they would get ready and come. We went back and waited and they showed right before sacrament meeting!
Also another mother with her kids showed up that is investigating. We werent expecting her because we know how shy she is. That was a super happy surprise!!! We have been praying for her to progress and she is!!

It was SUPER hot this week and no rain so not fun but im getting surprising use to the heat and even where long sleeved shirts... which surprises me that i dont die. Maybe im becoming Filipino! YAY!

Love you all and miss you tons of course!
Keep praying and studying the scriptures...
Sis Jones

scripture of the week

almost forgot...

Ether 2:25... try to apply it to life... what can you come up with?

August 9, 2010

WOW... thank you for the pics! I loved them all! Especially the one of the family with Kristin and Nick. Made me teary tho... not sure if im gonna want pics of Andrew and Stacey's wedding. We will see when the time comes tho. I got Kristins announcement today. It was beautiful. Im glad her reception was well even tho it was hot. Thank you also for sticking up for me.. haha... Those boys, those boys. Of course they all wanted to just go to Texas.. haha. I miss them... including Kyle. Was Stacey there at the reception? I love all the gifts you got for them... sounds perfect!

Im also excited for Cloey to go to school at ISU. Maybe ill change and go there and live with Grandma... haha. That was a joke... but could be serious someday.. hmm...

Let Grandma know i got two of her letters and loved them! Also i got letters from Amber, Kyle and Randi. Loved hearing from them all!!

Well mom, i dont have much time so im not sending a general email about my week. Just know it was great and im really growing spiritually. Today i spent 4 hours washing clothes... i didnt wash them all last week so i had more than usual! Im very tired and already feel the soreness in my forearms! hehe. It will be weird to use a washing machine again. Ill do all the handwashing clothes when i come home! Im pro!... well almost. haha.

The highlight of my week was going to a school and teaching 5 mothers. There is a little place for mothers to sit while their kids are in class and the wife of our ward mission leader goes there and she said the mothers had questions about mormons. We had one of the most spiritual lessons yet! It was amazing and we have return appts with them all! We already met with 2 of them again yesterday! One family is awesome and ready! Their little 3yr old daughter stares at me and they told me that after that first day at the school she went home and told her dad about me... that she met and played with a real life barbie doll! haha... how cute huh!!?
Mom... you are in charge of sharing the scripture of the week with the family cause you are the only one getting this info... 3 Nephi 18:25... Christ asks us to come to Him. If we dont we allow ourselves to to tempted. I know as we work to walk towards Christ the temptations in life will seem not so hard. Yes Satan targets us harder but if we are closer to Christ we are stronger too! We need not fear.

Well i love ya tons!!

Gugma Daghan
Your Daughter, Carissa

August 2, 2010

This week it rained every single day!! It was nice becasue it made the air cooler but we got drenched a few times! It created many memorable moments for us... we dreaded through a giant puddle, looked like wet dogs as we arrived to our appt with our soon to be converts, and took many detours. The mission is always full of good times... i love it. One night i actually was so cold that i wore a long sleeve shirt to bed! i know... who would have thot i would be cold in the Philippines! Showers are not to fun with the fact that its only cold water that comes out of the faucet and you are already cold from rain but its all good... its making me a stronger person.
This week we had interviews and it was great to talk with President and work all my struggles out. He always knows how to help. He really loves us like his own kids! He gave me a big hug which comforted me and made everything seem ok. His council was right on and im ready to take action and be better. He gave us all an amazing training on obedience. Satan doesnt tempt us deep in unrighteousness but right on the line and then slowly pulls us deeper and deeper into the dark. But we can step forward, not side ways, into righteousness... with evil out of sight... and go so deep in righteousness that it would be too hard and too far to go to the evil side because it would be too hard to undue all the good we did! I know that our Heavenly Father will help us to make righteous choices as we look towards Him and trust Him. Our Heavenly Father and Savior love us so much and want to help but they cant force it... we have to allow it. I have learned so much about Their love for all people on earth since ive been on my mission. They know us personally... better than anyone on earth... so we should trust Them more than man. Scripture of the week 2 Nephi 4:34
Our baptism on Friday was perfect! They all showed up on time and glowing! There were about 30 people that attended. Even one of our other investigators, Edwin, who should be baptized next month if we can get his marriage papers processed came. He wanted to see what a baptism was like before his own :) Sunday was great too when they all received the Holy Ghost! I felt the Spirit extra strong. Little Jerson (11 yrs old) has been so much brighter and talkative since his baptism and confirmation. He cracks me up... i just love these people!! Sister Fe Laurente bore her testimony... it wasnt really a normal testimony since it was her first and she didnt understand totally how it worked but it gave the ward a good laugh. You just have to know Fe to understand. I love her! Especially because she doesnt get offended and appreciates all the things we teach and correct her on becasue she sees how it is making her life better. What an amazing thing the gospel of Jesus Christ is! It truly changes lives! So share it!!
We also had a CSP on sat. We helped build a house for a recent convert! It was hot and us sisters mainly just straighten nails, cooked and took pics but it was fun to bond with everyone and service truly is the greatest thing you can do! All the members really had a great time. Even our recent converts, Sister and Brother Laurente came and helped. They have a great new circle of friends now!
I cant imagine me not having gone on a mission. This is the greatest work ive ever been a part of! I wish i could fully explain but im not sure how... words dont exsist.
I love you all and thank you for all of your prayers!!
Gugma Gud
Sister Carissa Jones

July 26, 2010

Part of her Email to MOM
This week has gone by crazy fast. I know you wish i was there during all these times (trust me, i do too sometimes!) but just think how fast time will go and ill be home before you know it... ive been gone for 6 months today! crazy thought!

Our apartment is really great actually. i like it better than my first (its much cleaner and less critters inside). We cook for lunch every day but usually for dinner we eat with a member. Its not like dinner appts like america... its just like who evers house we are at they usually feed us and if not we just go to the BBQ haun before going home. The Tutor family (recent converts) feed us most the time. We are really close with their family... i love them so much. They have 4 daughters and 1 boy. We are teaching one of their salingan or neighbors (the Laurente family) and since they are getting baptized this week we are there most nights teaching them and then go to the Tutor's for dinner. When we cook at home for lunch we always cook fresh food. We love vegetables and such. We dont have an oven, just a stove. Im learning some delicious dishes to make when i get home :)
Also our bathroom in our apt is great. Much cleaner and the shower head actually works so no more bucket showers. The water is still freezing but its all good... it comes with the package.

Well have tons of fun at the reunion and tell everybody hi and give them all big hugs for me!! i will miss eating grandmas sandwiches that we mass produce and then carry in the bread sacks to the beach... and all the other things that come with the thornock family reunion! I love you all so much! Especially you mom!!

Gugma Daghan
Sis. Carissa Jones

Well this week has been great... we have been busier than ever! I love these people so much! im debating on if i should ever come home! joke.. haha... but seriously... i love them!

We are having a baptism on friday and are so excited. A family, the Laurente family, is being baptized. A mother, father and one of their boys. They are actually the first people i met and taught here in Albuera that first day here! And it was the first lesson... they had just been contacted a few days before i got there. It has been amazing to see their progression and how the gospel has completely changed their lives. Sister Fe is the funniest, strong willed little lady and you can see how the gospel has softened her. She is still spunky and full of life but more difnified and doesnt get heated about little tiffs. And brother has made some big changes. He completely dropped drinking and smoking and you can tell he is so excited and ready for the blessings of the gospel. I love this little family so so much! i will send pics of the baptism next week.

We had a fun adventure hiking in the bukid (out in the middle of nowhere). And to add to the fun, it rained the whole time we were searching for this inv. house. We had never been there before and houses were few and far between so we just stopped at each one to ask where so and so lived... it was quite the adventure! I really love the Philippines! I think everyone should experience it!

Well im continuing to learn and grow spiritually. I cant believe the blessings that have come into my life because of the mission! Heavenly Father loves us all so much!! Remember that always! And he is always there if you let Him in. Scripture of the week... Helaman 14:31.... choose wisely! And remember you arent alone... He will help you choose the right if you listen to the Holy Ghost.

Gugma Kanunay
Sister Carissa Jones

July 19, 2010

Well this week was amazing... as every week always seems to be. Yes there are low points but im learning that the good times definitely out-weigh the struggles and so all the sorrows i have are totally worth it! I think that is how it will be at the end of this life during resurrection and judgement day... If we lived well and tried our honestly to goodness best and our growth out-weighs our downfalls we will be happy and excited to see our Savior and Heavenly Father. And our joy in the celestial kindgom will be more than worth what we had to go through on this earth to get there!

This week President Malit text all the missionaries asking us to join him in a pledge to be obedient and we were to text and tell him if we were "in" and "on board!" Of course we text and said "YES!" I think about the time at the end of my mission that i will have to report to my Heavenly Father and Savior all the things i did with their time. I want to be able to walk away from that prayer with tears of joy rather than tears of sorrow. And this is such a short time to account on, but nevertheless important! But think about our whole life... and when we will have to report our time here and what paths we chose to follow here. Remember that the path is straight and narrow for our benefit. It helps us not to get lost... we are able to see exactly what we need to do! Take the path less people choose to travel... its cleaner!

This week... mom... youll be thrilled to know that i cooked spaghetti bake and it was great! No we dont have an oven so it was all done on the stove. It tasted a bit different because they dont have real cheese here and the sauce and veggies are just different but it was good and my companion loved it! She wants the recipe!

We stayed nice and busy teaching and found some new families to teach! Most of our lessons were to investigators when its usually to less actives! Im so excited!! Im getting better at figuring this language out too! haha. My companion makes me so strong and i love her so much! I learned lots about companionship unity this week at our zone conference.

Zone conference was amazing. The Spirit that was there was unbelievable! Elder Teh (quorum of 70 and in the area presidency here) came with his wife. They are so nice and so wonderful. He gave awesome training to us about companionship unity, teaching with the Holy Ghost, and the Book of Mormon. I will write a handwritten letter in the next two weeks and send it with all the great and amazing things that i learned cause its too much to type in this short time!

Two really funny things happened this week...

One... i got bit/pecked in the leg by a devil chicken... it was such a michevious little creature! First it bit/pecked me during the lesson (yes i have a bruise!) and then later if found its way up on the roof and was tearing it apart! (the roof is made of leaves)

Two... I went to plug out emergency light in to charge on thurs night and it literally exploded! i saw a huge burst of light and my hand was completely black! i was ok but my heart was racing so fast and i had to sit down to cool down for a min! the cord detached from the part that you plug in... it was crazy!!

Well i love you all so so so very much!! Scripture of the week... 2 Nephi 33:1... The Holy Ghost comes "unto" our hearts... but we have to let him in. There is agency in all things. Our Heavenly Father wont force anything upon us... we have to take action to receive blessings.

Gugma Daghan!

Sister Carissa Jones

July 12, 2010

Hello to all!

This week has been busy as well! Im loving it here and im learning tons from my companion, Sister Barroca. My studies and prayers are becoming much more meaningful as i grow closer to my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and rely on the Spirit. I still have A LOT to learn but im gaining faith and hope that i can do this!! I understand more and more every day.

Sister Barroca and I joined the stake choir and we are having fun practicing the songs for the Ormoc stake building dedication! S. Barroca has a beautiful voice and i love listening to her sing! We are constantly singing hymns and church songs in the apartment and while walking around and i love it! It helps me to focus and concentrate on the work! My spirit is really growing just from a simple thing like music!

This week i bought supplies for smores and we cooked them with the Tutor family! It was super fun. I liked sharing a yummy treat from America with my filipino friends :)

Ive been in and out of being sick and on Tuesday i decided that it would be best if i receive a priesthood blessing. It was a beautiful blessing that reassured me of the work im doing and the work that i will do. I am so thankful for the priesthood and the power that God can bestow through it. I felt the love of my Heavenly Father so strong and i knew that if He would have been the one here on Earth in Ormoc He would have said the exact same words.

The mosquitoes are really REALLY loving me here! I thought they liked me in Naval but they like me much more in Albuera! haha... It's rained a lot which is nice because it cools the air down! We actually had a long walk in the rain out to an appt one day cause getting a ride would have taken too long. It was good tho cause we just talked and it went by faster than we expected. Our investigators are doing good. We are trying to find lots more to teach! I love seeing investigators progress and when they choose to align their desires with our Heavenly Father's desires for them! We have had some experiences while teaching where the Spirit is so strong and their is absolutely no way i could EVER deny it. This church really is Christ's church here on here and we really have a prophet that leads us today. What a loving Heavenly Father we have to have restored so many truths for us to be able to return to Him someday! We are so blessed!!

Scripture of the week: 2 Nephi 28: 30,32
First we must understand that this life is about progression and progression is not instantaneous. It takes time.. line upon line, precept upon precept. Also, if we dont heed to the council we are given at first we wont be given more. If we dont receive more how can we progress? Also, what we do have will be taken from us. We need to constantly be striving to implement what we are taught so that we can progress and receive greater knowledge!
And remember that Christ is ALWAYS there... reaching out for us! He will never leave us alone! He will always be there waiting for you to come into His loving arms of mercy!

Gugma Kanunay
SIster Jones

July 5, 2010

Well Happy 4th of July... Yesterday i thought about everyone celebrating our independence day... it was weird not celebrating but i happened to be teaching a lesson to this family while i was thinking about this (cause we were writing the date on a pamphlet) and 5 min later a bunch of kids were lighting fire crackers... so i had a little bit of firework on my 4th of july... haha.

My area is awesome still! Mom, transfers are every 6 weeks so the next one will be in 4 weeks from today. The people here continue to help me with the language and many are impressed on how well i speak in just 3 months. This is encouraging me to be better and learn more. Everyone is always teaching me new words, i love it!

We are teaching some great people right now. We have 2 families and 2 couples and some others. We visit lots of less actives too. Our goal this week is to find people to teach. One thing that President Malit reminds us always is that there is no progress in missionary work until you find people to teach. We are going to ask everyone we teach for referrals and not take no for an answer. Pres. Malit has taught us some cleaver ways on how to not take no for an answer! President actually was in Albuera because we had stake conference on sunday in Ormoc, so he came to our apartment saturday night and visited with S. Barroca and I. He told us the new directions we will be taking in the mission and is super excited about it. So are we!! We are now focusing on the temple. Becasue of the new temple in Cebu its much easier to travel to a temple now.
As missionaries we help people come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end. They cant endure to the end and make it to the celestial kingdom (which is the ultimate goal) without going to the temple and being sealed as a family forever. Stake conference was a lot about this and the importance of families. I want my family to know how much i love you!! So many things were said and i realized that i never want to be without my family. S. Malit said, "we need to always be striving to be worthy of the promises we make in the temple, so we can be with our families forever."

This week has been busy but great. I was sick but we still went out and worked and it felt great to be diligent! Our ward had a party at the beach on wed and i learned how to make some very yummy filipino food so be ready to eat a lot when i come home! We will continue to work hard and be worthy of the Spirit. I love when i feel the Spirit because i know you can only have the Spirit if you are worthy of it. So when i feel it i know that i am doing what the Lord wants me to do and im on the right path!!

Scripture of the week D&C 132:10-16

Well i love you all and you are always in my prayers! Thank you for your love, prayers and support!

Sister Jones

June 28, 2010

Well hello family! I dont have tons of time to email but here is my exciting news for the week... I got transferred!!!! I was super sad to leave Naval and saying goodbye to our investigators was hard but it was great to be in Tacloban for a day and see lots of mission friends! Also I LOVE MY NEW AREA AND COMPANION!!! Wow... i cant even explain how much i love it! My companion is S. Barroca (a Filipina) and we are serving in Albuera (so check it out on the mission map i sent home). We have a ward here and they are awesome! Everyone we visit is super nice and fun. We have dinner appointments like crazy. One of the recent converts, Haidie and her family, feed us whenever we want. Literally they would feed us every meal of every day. Our bishop is super nice... except he asked me to speak on sunday that first night i arrived (which was thurs night)... haha. My talk went ok. I realized that i know the language better than i thought. Ive been able to communicate pretty well with people and S. Barroca and the people im talking to are super good at helping me when i dont understand a word. They are SO nice!! Sometime S. Barroca doesnt know a word in english she just explains it using other cebuano words which is super helpful in learning the language (she isnt amazing at english... but she is better at english than i am at cebuano). We speak much more cebuano in the apt than S. Taperla and i ever did so i feel this transfer i will progress a lot. Also, in this area im learning what being a real missionary is! S. Taperla was a great trainer for me but this is a good change. S. Barroca and mine companionship studies, prayers and teaching is so much closer to the Lord. We sing together and kneel to pray and hug each other after we pray and tell each other we love each other every night. I may sound like a 5 yr old but this is just awesome! I feel the Spirit all the time... i feel like a missionary. I mean i did before too but now its even more than i realized i could feel. Im so grateful for the Savior's love and this opportunity i have in Albuera. Sorry, i literally have no time cause we have an appt but i will write more in detail about our work next week! Just know that we are working hard and im doing great!! And most of all... I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!!
Sister Jones

June 21, 2010

This week flew by!
Guess what!?... The showers have been extra cold since i dont come home sweating because the weather cools down from the rain... therefore, i needed something to change. So the other night I boiled some water and added it to my big bucket of shower water! I took my first luke warm shower in the Philippines!! How wonderful it was! It felt strange but oh so good! YAY!!
We committed Albert and his friend, Renaldo to be baptized but are postponing it again now. We have such great lessons with them and they really LOVE learning... they just need to show a little bit more on their own. When you truly love and believe something it leads you to action. We cant just say we believe or know something... we need to show it through our actions!
We met this man at the bus station bathroom... i know weird place. But the Lord is always putting people in our paths... we just have to always be looking! He asked us what our profession and seemed interested... we gave him a pamphlet and got his address. We are actually going to teach him after this!
We lost a good investigator this week because her father wont allow her to continue. Bring souls unto Christ is truly the greatest joy... and seeing them use their agency to not is the sadest feeling! I pray that she continues to read the Book of Mormon cause she was reading it everyday!! She told me, even if she only has time to just read one verse a day she will read! Despite that we found a great BIG family. We taught them a lesson and got a return appointment. They are super nice and have many neighbors that sat in and listened... i just want to baptize their entire little community! At least thats the feeling i had as we left the appointment yesterday!
Our investigator, of 3 months na, finally came to church! We were estatic as we saw her and her two kids walk in a min before we began! We were giving the talks in sacrament meeting so we didnt get to sit by them but her fellowshipper (who works with her) sat with them. Arlyn loved church! She was taking tons of notes from the gospel principles book so we just let her take it home. He turned to me and said she was going to study so she could teach next time! How awesome is that! She finally put her faith into action and came and loved it! Im so happy!! We shared with her the other day from Alma 32 about experimenting with this seed that she has and she took the challenge and kept her commitment! Oh how i love commitment keeping people! This will be the scripture of the week... Alma 32. When you struggle with everything going on in your crazy life if you have the slightest desire, experiment. Moved forward with faith and if its a good seed it will grow and blossom... you will be amazed!
Our Father in Heaven really is there. He hears and answers our prayers. Christ knows us... we just need to trust Him. Because of the restoration of the gospel through the prophet Joseph Smith families can be together forever! We have a prophet today. How important it is for us to listen and heed his counsel. It is truly the counsel of God. If we really believe and know that there is a prophet on the earth today then we wont just say it but we will show it through our actions by following his counsel. I know this is the church of Christ... and i will never deny this truth! I love my Savior and Redeemer with all my heart. His arms are outstretched and He is waiting for us to come unto Him. I am grateful to feel His love every day as i humble myself, kneeling in prayer and ask for forgiveness. Im becoming better than i ever imagined i could! You can too!
I love you all so much! Thank you for your love and support! May blessings be poured out upon you always!!
Sister Carissa Jones

June 13, 2010

We had our big branch activity and since the branch didnt plan the food we ran to the market and did the cooking! It was fun and luckily Sisters Blonquist and Lemmon were there to spend the night becasue of the Cebu Temple dedication the next day. We all had a blast cooking! IT was all our first time cooking pancit and it turned out amazing. S. Taperla is convinced that the gift of cooking is one of the gifts of the Spirit that is talked about in the scriptures... haha. Our turn out for the activity was really good! Sister Lemmon and I went for a bit and testified and introduced the Testaments video. There were like 10 potential investigators! And they were so thankful to be fed. They were so hesitant and even tried to leave but the members were great at getting them to come back in and eat. You could see the gratefullness in those peoples eyes. It was a great moment... for them and me!
The Cebu Temple dedication was phenominal! Pres. Monson was SO FUNNY! What a great prophet we have!! Pres. Eyring and Dallin H. Oaks were also there. We were privileged to watch the first 2 of the 3 sessions. I learned so much and feel so blessed. How lucky we are to have temples.. and in America, so close to us!
Riding home from the dedication on a jeepney. S. Taperla, Me, and E. Santoyo (zone leader). The way there we road in the back of a members truck. It was crazy... sliding around but it was fun. And since there were 6 missionaries in the truck we figured we were safe :)
Earlier this week we had a fun experience... We took a "short cut". Yeah... not much of a short cut at all! I finally turned to S. Taperla and said "short cut?... really!?" We both laughed and had a good talking to to the boy that told us it was a short cut. Haha... fun times!
Im learning more than i can express! I love this gospel and i love being a missionary. I striving to not just say im a missionary cause i have a name tag that says so... but to truly be a missionary that the Savior, Jesus Christ, would recognize as His missionary.
Scripture of the week... 1 Nephi 15:8. I think sometimes we dont know where to find answers and feel so lost but do we forget to ask God? One principle that has grown tons on my mission is prayer. It is so important! There is nothing too silly to ask God. I hope He is our first source instead of men. Keep doing what your doing and striving to be better one day at a time!
Love you tons!
Sister Jones

Monday, June 7, 2010

June 7, 2010

Well everybody... here is my weeks events and thoughts...

Monday we committed Albert Fermin to be baptized on June 19th! He is so excited!!

We had an incredibly lesson with a lady we've been teaching for 2 months, Arlyn. She is awesome and has some difficult trials. We made a deep connection with her and she really opened up to us. We all cried a bit and we verbally told her how much we love her and i know that she really knows that we do. She thanked us and i felt for a moment what our Heavenly Father feels for all of us. He REALLY loves us... and to feel that love for someone else is the most amazing feeling ive ever felt! He wants us to return to Him so bad! Help Him to achieve His purpose/goal by making sure you will return to Him.

Thursday was a difficult day... I felt like i knew nothing and my companion was very frustrated with me. Avoid contention with everything you got. My mission president told me a great thing in my interview... Contention happens when two people think they are right and the other is wrong... but if just one stepped down and simply just apologized no contention would exist. Be the first to apologize even if you know you are right... eliminate contention. Trust me, blessings will come to those that do so!

Friday was AWESOME! I felt very blessed after thurs being so difficult. Interviews were awesome and i learned lots about Charity and Love in our training from our ZL's. The rest of the day was great too. Sister Taperla and I were really united and had the Spirit when we taught! We spent some time going around trying to meet people and had lots of fun talking with everyone. We met a Korean through this girl that always says hi to us. He has been here a year and doesnt speak well cebuano so we were about equal. He didnt understand a few things i said so maybe i am getting this language! hehe. I also had my first halo-halo on Friday! Its like a specialty dessert here. Its ice cream and crushed ice and all sorts of other toppings... mine had coconut, jackfruit, jello, corn, beans, frosted flakes, and a few other things. It was tasty! Never thot to put corn or beans in a dessert but hey... it was yummy! Our dinner appt fell thru so we went to the BBQ Haun... YUM! What a good good day!

Saturday we had a big FHE at a members house (the Fermin Family... which is the family of Albert). A bunch of things happened that were unexpected and S. Taperla got frustrated and turned to me at the last minute and told me to teach cause she didnt have the Spirit. At first i was frustrated cause here was 30 people, i didnt have a plan and i cant speak cebuano all that well. But after 22.7 seconds what Andrew said to me right before going into the MTC came to my mind... "This is a good thing... This is a good thing..." I changed my attitude and decided to make it a good learning experience! It went really well and Sister Jamin helped me explain the scripture i shared more deeply. I shared 3 Nephi 18:21-22... so that is the scripture of the week. I know that family prayer and FHE (meeting together often) is so important and we all should strive to be better at these things! I know it isnt always easy but try... If you put forth the effort, Heavenly Father will give you strength that you didnt realize that you had! PROMISE!!

Sunday we had great attendance... 55! And 4 investigators! We were very happy!

This week we have lots planned!!... Saturday a big branch activity and Sunday the Cebu Temple decication!! We are so lucky to be able to watch it!

I love you all and hope all is well!!

Gugma-Sister Jones

P.S. Tell Kristin that i got her email and i love her and will write her a handwritten letter tonight and send it tomorrow. And to Carson... i sent the mass email to him every week but it usually gets sent back as delivery failed.. but only to him. Does he have a new email or something? I just dont want him to think i send it to everyone but him... cause i send it to him!

May 31, 2010


The work is going good. Im getting better at this whole missionary thing every day i think. Prayers are keeping me going. I think to myself, how lost and hard this world/life would be without prayer! And why dont we pray more!?

We had Zone Conference last Wednesday and have interviews this Friday! I love seeing President Malit and Sister Malit! I learned a lot from Zone Conference and it was great to see my fellow missionary friends. Mom, i told Elder Darrington how you and his brother work together... we think thats pretty cool! E. Darrington truly is one of my favorites!

We are getting some new good investigators... and they are families! It's so hard to tell how they will be but so far they are great and seem interested. The hardest thing, i find, is getting them to church! We try so hard to emaphize the importance but they never come. If anyone has advice on what we could do ill take it!

We do have one AWESOME investigator! He is the only person in his family that isnt a member. The tatay has been a member for awhile but the mother and other kids are recent converts (within the last year i think). Albert will be 18 next week. The second week i was here we tried teaching him and it was an absolute struggle getting him to even come in the house. He wouldnt look at us or give us the time of day. I tried asking him if he knew that he is a child of God and the God loves him... He didnt know and didnt seem to care to know. What i would call stubborn to the max!... Well... two weeks ago he attended the multi youth conference with his siblings and other nonmember friend. Something awesome must have happened at youth conf. He was at church that next sunday and when we went to teach Tatay Fermin he came in and opened a Basahon ni Mormon and read with us. After we turned to him and told him we want to teach him and asked when we could come back... He said "Tomorrow!"... oh, you have no i idea the excitement that started running through S. Taperla and my bones!! So we had a great lesson with him last week and he asked lots of questions... and he was at church again on sunday! And we are teaching him tonight too! I cant even explain the happiness i feel to see this total 180 change in this young man! He is a great example of Ether 12 and God making weak things strong after the trial of our faith. He took action/exercised faith and went to youth conference and now God is strengthening him! We also found out that he was the only one from our branch that bore his testimony at YC! He said that he isnt a member yet but he knows that this church is true... what faith huh! Man, the church IS true!!

We keep trying to teach this catholic 82yr old lady that loves to read. We always saw her outside her house reading so we gave her pamphlets to read. She read them so this week we tried teaching but she kept saying how she hasnt heard about Joseph Smith being a prophet in her books (Duh... cause they are catholic)... She also said that Adam wasnt a prophet, just the first man, which i didnt know that they catholics believed that. She was funny but frustrating at the same time. Its funny how those people that are such good people and seem to have such great faith because of how religious they are, actually dont exercise faith at all cause they are so blinded. If only she really opened up and gave it a chance she would know.

The last thought i have is about family. This sunday the district president talked about families and temple marriage! And then in sunday school we talked about families. "Families are the most important institutions in this church." And then i was reading in the 'Preparing to enter the Temple' book and it says how other things in the church are organized in regular buildings but families, we organize them in the temple because of how important they are. Remember that... Remember to love your family!... Family is where its out. If we arent striving to strengthen our families we have nothing! I love my family so so so much!

Well keep it real! I love you all!

Sister Carissa Jones

MAY 24 2010

Pics arent working again... sorry :(

This week was full of ups and downs like always. My language is improving slowly... im determined to not be that missionary that comes home and never learned the language! My companion, S. Taperla, says im getting better so thats good. I really wish i had a language study hour but S. Taperla wants to go out and work at 10 so i just try to cram it in at night or if we come home to take a nap i just study while S. Taperla sleeps.

A few highlights of the week...

Tuesday we went to a members house around lunch time and there were tons of fiestas going on. After teaching we went with them to one of the fiestas for lunch. It was super yummy and they feed you so much food at fiestas. The fiestas are to celebrate saints... so its a catholic thing. And we love people of all religions and respect them... especially when food is involved :) On our way back to the members house some of their neighbors insisted that we join... pretty sure it was because there was an american... me. We all laughed and decided to eat again! We were so stuffed by the end and couldnt believe we just attended two fiestas back to back... WOW!
That night i taught a cool lesson from Mormon 9:31 to an awesome girl in our ward! We were just talking with her about trials and such and this scripture popped into my head so i turned our casual talking into a lesson... it was neat and I really felt the Spirit.
Thursday was a very very long day but awesome! We did so much teaching and i was able to push through and teach effectively. We walked SO much that day! From 4 to 9 we were constantly on the move. We taught lots of families and met some great less active families that we hadnt met yet. We hiked out to the bukid to visit this lady we met the other week and she ended up not being home so we were super tired when we arrived home. We walked most of the way home barefoot because it just felt nice. It was at least a 3-4 mile walk! The next day we found out that two girls later that night had been killed in the exact area we were walking through (but later in the evening, past our curfew when we are already in our house). We felt blessed and we always feel protected. This is the work of God... and as we are obedient and diligent we missionaries are protected!
Friday was a difficult day... most of our appointments fell through but we never stopped going! We walked a ton that day just from house to house of people we knew trying to find people to teach. The night ending with a nice dinner at Pres. Ang's house and hey, at least we got lots of exercise in!
I dont know if ive mentioned it yet but there is a guy in the branch that is 45 and has crushes on all the americana missionaries. So, thats me now. Its awkward at times and S. Taperla is starting to notice how he will always move from where he is and sit by me. It isnt to a point where he is crossing a line so im ok for now. I just hope he keeps his distance so i wont have to be transferred from this area soon. He is a good member and really helps with the missionary efforts and everyone knows that he is like that with the americanas so im safe. S. Taperla and i get a good laugh about it sometimes and other times i just want to punch him... haha.
Yesterday, Sunday was good. Sacrament meeting attendance went up to 48 and we made lots of visits. A few families we were really expecting to be there werent there so that was sad but we have appts to visit them all this week so we will try again!
Im excited for this week... number one: to work and teach and become a better missionary... and two: we have zone conference on wednesday! I love seeing and hearing what President Malit has to say to us. He is the best ever!

I love you all and you are always in my prayers!! Remember to learn all you can!... Scripture of the week... 3 Nephi 27:26.

Sister Carissa Jones

P.S. Tell Kristin if she hasnt written me yet im going to have to beat her!!... and that goes for Kyle as well!!!!

May 17 2010... to all

This week was actually pretty dang slow! We got punted tons but our main saying is "No effort is wasted!"... Sister Taperla and I had to say it a lot to each other.. hehe...
As you can see i didnt get transferred... we are still in Naval, which i was super happy about. Im not ready to leave this place!

We did have a giant service project on saturday. It was national service day for the church so all over the Philippines we were walking around wearing cute, bright yellow vests cleaning. We took down all the political posters and such since election is over. The way they campaign is much different... no yards equals no yard signs (hehe)... so there are papers and banners stuck to all the walls all over the streets. We had a good time as a branch and had a yummy lunch!!

Im getting better at teaching and just spitting things out in cebuano. There are times where i truly feel the Spirit take over and help me speak with ease and without question. The words just roll from my mouth. Its true... the words and things you study will come to you at the exact time you need them through the Holy Ghost! Its awesome!

Every third sunday the missionaries in this branch talk so... we got talk! YAY! I talk on service and fulfilling our callings. As we serve one another we are greatly blessed! Make sure you are doing your calling to God's expectations. Also, please do visiting teaching and home teaching... that is one thing we are really trying to get the members to do and really struggling with. It is so important and you will be so much improvement in the ward if everyone works together and does their visits!

I lied last week... it gets up to like 115 at least during the day. I took my temp thing out with us one day... RIDICULOUS! All the sweating is really helping my lose weight. I put on my jeans to do service on sat and they wont even stay up! I didnt realize i had lost that many inches in my waist! SAWEET!... no worries... im not like deathly skinny by any means!

I really dont have much at all to say and my pics arent loading on this comp so sorry... they will have to wait till next week.

But the scripture of the week is Moroni 9:25-26... Keep your chin up!

Sister Jones

May 10, 2010 After the Mother's Day Phone Call

I love you all SO MUCH! It was great to talk with you! You lifted my spirits and give me strength to tough it out and keep going... thank you! Tell grandma and grandpa thank you so much. It was so great to hear their voices! I wasnt able to get out my thanks cause i was crying but thank you for your love and support. I feel it pick me up when im having a bad day... Know that you are always in my prayers and i couldnt do this without you. You are the most important people in my life and i love you more than you know!

Scripture of the week... Joshua 1:9

Sister Jones

PS to answer the question about the temp... it gets up to 105 maybe during the day and 80 at night... thats my guess

Monday, May 3, 2010

CJ's Email May 3rd, 2010

Ok so i just wrote an email with pics and it got lost... i dont know what happened... So this version will be short... sorry!
We had interviews with President Malit, which were amazing. I love Pres. Malit!! He got me really pumped for the work and reminded me that i have been called to do this work! He is the best and really loves us! I also got weighed by Sister Malit. I weigh 109.5 so ive lost 5 lbs. and my blood pressure was low but im still alive so its all good!
Zone reactivation in Caibiran was good but the ride was long and on the back of a motorbike so my hip flexors got their workout for the year. And the bar that you put your feet on vibrates... not a good massage vibrate... so my feet were irritated and throbbing by the time we got back!
OH and remember how last week my arms were sore from washing all my clothes... yeah... that night i couldnt sleep cause they were throbbing so bad! Im gonna come back with the strongest forearms ever!! whoot whoot
Rosalina will be baptized on May 8th... we are super excited! She is great. She was late for church, so i was worried we were going to have to postpone but then she showed like she always does. LOVE HER!
Had a small earthquake on saturday. I was in the bathroom and was like no way... i must be imagaining it... then a member told us that we had had one and it was the same time i thought i had felt it... CRAZY!
We got punted a lot this week so we didnt think we would meet our goal of 20 lessons to less actives/recent converts/members but we worked hard and long the last three days and accomplished our goal! Last night (sunday) we were exhausted becasue of our constant go go go! We went to a members house... thinking it was a dinner appt cause they always feed us when we go over at that time. We sat and sat and had even gone and gotten a recent convert that is new to the area to get to know some people in the branch... Well no food so at 9 we headed home. We walked... which we didnt think was possible cause our legs were seriously dead. I felt like i couldnt pick my legs up... We just kept saying press forward! Finally a motor came once we got to our street so we road the short distance to our balay. The shower and bed was very very nice! So this inspires the scripture for the week... Alma 8:19-20... Please offer to feed the missionaries when you see them!... Love you all!

Carissa's Email 4/25/2010

I sure do miss you too! When we talk it will be monday here for me yes. Im not sure how it works or when it will be with the time difference. It will have to be in the morning i would think cause that is sunday night for you. I have interviews with president tomorrow so i will ask him and let you know next monday. I will ask about the skype thing as well! That would be cool!
Yeah that wiping thing... its definitely hard to wrap your head around! But honestly when you are here and you know everyone else does it, it makes it easier, haha. And of course you can put that on my blog! Let the world know, haha. Anything i say other than the really personal things are ok to put on the blog. Does dad hate me? Im sure he is just busy but i havent heard from him these last two weeks. Let him know that i love him! Give him a big hug for me!
Glad you are still watching prison break... its something like the OC that you can watch over and over! Im still hoping that they bring it back on air!!! Its possible!

Yay for workout! I got to go running today! I havent ran in a month so it was scary... like i said... you will for sure be in better shape than me when i get home!
I cant believe you just got that letter! Maybe they sent them out later than expected. I sent a letter last tuesday (the 19th) so we will see how long it takes.
Oh how i miss grandma! a lot!! Ill have to come back and beat her at rummi! hehe... Glad you were able to spend time with her! That would be cool if they were there on mothers day!
Man it just sounds like you are staying super busy! THe EQ party sounded fun!! and im glad dad will be home more soon!! I think that will help with things with Garrett too. Primary sounds like fun... haha. Just love the kids and help them to have fun and feel love. That will keep them wanting to come back to church and establish a good habit. It reminds me of a talk given in the sat morning session this last conference. It was about getting the kids to stand strong and be on the right path before the advasary is able to come and tempt them.
About things i need or want... nothing as of now and i dont want you to have to send me much cause its so expensive. The only things i can think of for the future would be isagenix shake and more of those journals. If you cant find the exact same ones ill just buy some here but if i had all the same ones that would be cool. So only if you find the exact same ones you bought before! I just finished one of them... yeah, i write a lot i guess.
I do love the food. I eat prob the same as i would there. I am careful when we are eating at poorer peoples houses but usually when we are invited for a meal they are wealthier members. I snack on a lot of little things... Sister Malit will weigh us during interviews tomorrow so we will see if ive lost or gained...
Well im trying to think of the new adventures this week... hmm...
-We are finding some investigators and Sister Taperla taught me how to get referrals! She is awesome! We got a few referrals from members so contacted them and while contacting them we asked for referrals and then would go contact them and get referrals... Sister Taperla didnt take no for an answer. She just kept asking, who is your classmate? who does your husband work with? etc etc... We found a really cool investigator during this process. His name is Wilson Alejandre. He is half white... his father got his mother pregnant while being over here for military stuff. His mother worked at a bar so yeah... he was adopted by the owner of the bar but then died so now Wilson lives on his own. He is the 'bad boy' type but man is he prepared. He asked tons of questions about repentance during our first discussion. He is excited for us to come back and he says he will have more questions. We are really hoping things go good with Wilson!!
-We will most likely have our first baptism this coming saturday. Her name is Rosalina. She is unable to walk but she faithfully rides to church every sunday! She loves church and really desires to always follow the Savior. It's hard for me to understand her cause of her handicap and my handicap in the language but she loves shaking and holding my hand... she is adorable.
-I walked like a billion kilometers this week... we decided we need to manage our pasahey money better so we are walking lots! I like it tho!
-This week i had my most favorite meal yet! And apparently its a meal that really poor people eat because its so cheap... GO POOR PEOPLE! Its squash and these leaves (not sure what kind) cooked in coconut milk! Oh SO YUMMY! Its served over rice... of course, duh! We bought stuff so we can make it at our home! YAY!
-We ate at our branch presidents house this week (Pres. Sacedor) and i really liked what they fed us. It was really simple... fish, chicken and eggs all cooked together... served over rice! The presidents family is really great! They are so kind and patient with me and my language. Their daughter Mariel Jaika is the cutest girl ive seen! She is 14 i think... she always smiles so big at me and helps me with the language.
-Last night we ate at Albert Ang's house. Him and his 12-14 yr old son are members. They have one of the nicer houses in Naval. They alwasy feed us lots of yummy food! We eat there once a week usually. Last night we played some fun games and sand hymns which was really fun. And i taught a short lesson on a spur of the moment scripture. The Spirit really guided me and helped me with my language. I was extremely happy! Most members dont specifically have us over for dinner. Only with about 3 different families will they invite us to eat if we are there during lunch or dinner hours. We usually go home for lunch and just eat something for dinner when we get home at night. We take snacks or by things at tindahans on the street if we get hungry between lunch and going home at night.
-It gets light very early! I wake up without fail at 5-5:30 every day cause its already light. I definitely go back to sleep for that last hour tho. Becasue it gets light early it get dark early so our day ends at 8 usually. People are going to bed close after 8 so thats why we wait to eat dinner then usually.
-The weird thing that i ate this week was a fish head... yep... thats right... a fish head! Eyeballs and everything. Elder Matheney and Sister Lemmon told me to just imagine its a potato chip. That helped, it tasted like a fish flavored potato chip.
-Washed my clothes all by myself for the first time today. Sister Taperal usually does my clothes and i just wash my garments but S. Taperal was too tired today. It took me a legit 3 and a half hours to wash 7 sets of garments, 3 skirts, 3 shorts, and 10 shirts... My arms are very sore right now and i cant even imagine how they will feel tomorrow!!
-The mosquitos just cant get enought of me... My legs are super ugly right now...
-The language is coming along. Some days are good and some are rough! As i trust in the Lord and just try, He helps me say what i need to say. It's such a comfort and is what keeps me going. I wish i could just remember everything and was catching on quicker but i think because im having to put so much effort and time into this language it will mean so much more and stick better in the long run! I continue in hope and faith and i hope you all do too!
-Scripture of the week... 2 Nephi 28:30
Sorry my camera thing isnt working today for some reason so i cant send pics but i will try again next week!
I love you soooo much mom! Keep being the best mom ever!
Your Daughter

Carissa's Email 4/18/2010

Hi mom... glad you got you email in before i left... i was just finishing andrews email and you sent yours! I love you SO MUCH! I hope you know that that will never change!

So im writing you a handwritten letter so i will have to save a few things so i have something to hand write... sorry that this wont be as good as the other weeks.

Here are some monumental events of the week..

1. Got a flat tire coming back from zone conference with the assistants (E.Manarang and E.Cruz) and of course it was pouring rain!

2. Got stuck out in the bukid at a members house without a ride... and it took 1 hour to get a motorcycle to drive by and pick us up... We just looked like little hitch-hikers out there on the side of the road

3. I killed a cockroach... actually im getting quite good at it! hehe

4. For the first time since ive been out here, i was mocked. A man came to a door where we were teaching cause he heard there was an Americana (it gets out fast with all the little kids around). I tried telling him what i was doing there... teaching about Christ... he just laughed and kept saying things in cebuano cause he knew i didnt understand. He said the word "uyab" which i know... its girlfriend or boyfriend. He was telling me that he wanted me to be his girlfriend. Sister Taperla stepped in and told him to stop mocking me and said i was a representative of Christ and he was being very disrespectful. She was so mad... im glad i have a companion that looks out and cares for me. The man continued to say things and just laugh at me... It was humiliating but im ok now!

5. And most of all... i embraced the culture... i was out about and had to go to the bathroom... i forgot my toilet paper... i said well, guess its better now than ever... i let go of my cares... i wiped with my hand... and most importantly with the correct hand! The left! I think i could officially call myself a Filipina now!!

Zone conference was absolutely amazing but i will hand write the things i learned there. I was figuring it out and if we were to write letters back and forth and you only write every time you get a letter you would only write 12-14 letters. Cause it would only be once a month or so... I hope im making sense... like i write, you get it 2 weeks later and write and i get it 2 weeks later so that is a month from when i wrote the first one... yeah? thats not bad... that makes the time seem so short!!

Well you are always in my prayers... and do you know how much i love you mom? Its beyond measure!

Gugma Gyud

Your very sweaty daughter!

Monday, April 19, 2010

April 12, 2010


First off I love and miss you!

Oh you know you love dad's silly dancing and singing! I would be joining right on in if i was there! And im so glad you finally are getting dishes and thank yous back to people! They were so awesome to help and i hope they know how thankful i am for their generousity!! Andrew always gives you crap about my stuff being everywhere and making the house a mess... sorry! :) And man... i really had 9 MORE bins! Man.... im never getting married huh!?

Well i dont know if this week will be exciting as last week sorry... The pics should be fun tho!

We are learning the areas much better now! The little kids love me cause im white.. haha. They always run up to me and say "SITER JONE-ES!" and "UP HERES!!" to give me high 5's.... they love giving high fives! The really young ones run around with no pants on and a lot of the little boys have little ruffly girl shirts... its so funny, i love it! They are so cute... i wish i could bring them all home with me!!

Im trying to keep Sister Taperla busy so we dont have to sit at home! The other night we went out and contacted on the streets... we met lots of cool people and gave them the restoration pamphlet with our number to contact if they have questions. We met this adorable older couple sitting outside their little house. I got to touch a nanay's hand to my head for the first time! It is a great sign of respect to the elderly... you do it instead of just shaking their hand. I think we will go back to their house and teach them.

I had another really cool experience while walking around. As we were walking by a bakery i saw this girl and was quietly prompted to go share our message with her. Sister Taperla kept telling me to "follow the Spirit, follow the Spirit" as we first went out. Sadly, i hesitated at this prompting and we kept on walking and began talking to some other people. It was eating at me that i didnt go talk to her and i kept thinking to interrupt my companion and tell her we should go back but i didnt... Then... the power in the city went out!! The only light was from the motorcycles on the streets. We began to head back to our apartment and would be walking by the bakery! The girl wasnt sitting at the counter anymore... i really was feeling terrible that i didnt listen to the Spirit and felt this would be on my head... Then i spotted her! Even tho i had only seen her for a split second earlier i totally recognized her. She was sitting on her bike on the street. I told S. Taperla we needed to turn around and go talk to her so we did! We shared our message and i felt a great peace. She was very nice and im still not sure if she needed us at that moment or i needed to learn a lesson but im just so thankful for the love of God and Him continually giving us chances to prove ourselves! Im so glad that this test is a LIFE LONG TEST... and we are able to fix and correct things over and over... unlike a test at school. We are truly blessed!

I finally had my first mango!!! SO GOOD! It has like 5 flavors at different times! And then Sister Taperla made this dessert called mango float! Oh i just love it.

The bananas taste different and are much much smaller! I ate a cooked banana too at a less active members house this week. It wasnt my favorite but they werent ripe so i was told the riper ones are sweeter and softer when they are cooked.

This same lady served us fresh fish. Like they literally had just caught them (they live on the shore) and cooked them... Head, bones, skin and all. I really liked it! Its still weird eating fish like that but im getting better at it.

We had some fish on friday too as a zone at our reactivation meeting in Almeria and it took everything i had to put it down... the fish's eyeballs were just staring at me! And the flavor wasnt as good as the one we had on saturday at that ladys house on the shore.

So this is random but we go by this coconut factory place where they make oil, and all that stuff you can make with coconuts and so the smell is SO strong... And i finally realized the smell of my shampoo is a nice mixture of coffee, caramel and COCONUT! I got excited while riding on the pot-pot so i thought i would share that with you... hehe...

Well my scripture of the week is Mormon 9:21... It has been a great strength to me! How awesome is it that all we have to do is have faith and ASK and it will be given us!

Remember to read your scriptures and prayer daily! I love you SO VERY MUCH! You are the greatest mom in the whole wide world... and ive traveled half the world now!!



P.S. The time difference is 14 hours. Im 14 ahead of you! I always just add two hours to my time and switch the time of day (morning or night) to know when it is there! haha... Just think... Im praying for you and watching over you while you are sleeping! And im preparing the day... if i have a good successful day, that same day for you will be blessed for you! Hmm cool thot huh!?

Dearest Father.... I mean FASHA! (Yes of course you can still call me CJ!) I miss your dancing. I was actually thinking about it the other day! I was wondering since i never get to dance out here will i lose my touch?? I hope not! hehe. You just keep dancing no matter how the family looks at you! casue you know i would be right there dancing with you!

So we watched conference at church on sunday BUT it was in cebuano! Turns out I didnt understand much!! haha. I will just have to wait till it comes out in the magazines and we get those! I was so excited to be able to watch it! We didnt know it would be in cebuano!! OOPS! It was actually the first time my companion had seen it in cebuano so it was weird for her too.

Thats so sweet you were able to see the Smiths and Logan! They were so nice to send me that little pack of sweet rolls while i was in the MTC! I cant believe our ward to so small now. After we moved i guess people realized it wasnt worth staying anymore.. haha.. jk jk!

I wish i could have heard you sing at church! The music here is much different. They sing everything in english so thats one thing im good at!! ha. But its funny to hear how they pronounce things and their beat is always slightly off and their pitch is always off. But what i LOVE is how they just sing their little hearts out no matter what. They are truly singing to their God and that is the most important thing. I love listening to them even when they arent on tune!!

We are struggling with the branch a bit. The members are great but they still could be better. We only have ONE family that is endowed! That is the Jamin family. Brother is the branch mission leader and Sister served her mission here in Tacloban so is wonderful help! We are going to try to teach the members about the importance of the temple ordinances! We have a couple new investigators which im excited about! I feel the spirit when we teach them and they seem to really be listening and accepting. PLUS they both have great LDS friends that will be amazing fellowshippers for them!! YEAH!! Having a fellowshipper is SO important!

I love you beyond measure!

Gugma CJ!


You seem so busy thats awesome! Im trying to stay as busy as possible... it makes it all much easier when we are busy! We have a few new investigators which i am excited about! Im not able to speak very much with my lack of language skills but i try. The members very nice and patient with me. Everyone stares at me cause im like the only white girl theyve seen in a long time... i just wave and smile. Sometimes they say things to me that im sure they are making fun of me or saying something silly cause i dont understand but soon i will understand and be able to talk to them. I need your prayers to learn this language cause its really difficult.

Im so excited for you to go to DC! I wish we could have done something cool like that. You are lucky!

Sounds like snowboarding was fun too! I cant even picture snow because its so hot here. haha. Sorry about the sun burn but thats totally sweet you got knocked out! If you would have been seriously hurt i would be sad but when you come out of something like that ok its totally rad! And always a good story to share with others! Who is it that you went with again?

Also i bet you are stoked for only 7 more weeks! You will all still probably getting together and hang out during the summer tho... playing night games and watching movies im sure! I miss being your age and just having so much fun with my friends!!

You are going to be so buff from all that shoveling! i wish i could go out and go running but all i can do are exercises with my little rubberband thing and sit ups. I hate not having time to work out... that always helped me relieve stress.

I sure hope i am blessing the people out here and im making this time away from you worth it! I need help and guidance and strongly rely on Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost!!

Ok so i love you is "Naghigugma ko sa imo" and i will punch you is "Magsumbag ko nimo"

I love you SOOOOOOOO MUCH! Keep the family in line and remember who you are and dont do anything i wouldnt do! (haha)


Sista Jones

Oh hello my little one!

Easter sounded very fun! Wish i could have been there to see it!! Mom told me that she beat dad in finding the eggs... haha. Its so hot here today! I cant even believe it... im sweating buckets. I carry a little rag around with me to wipe the sweat off my face! People are nice tho when we go to teach because if they have a fan they turn it on for us :) And yes, most of the people are shorter than me... even the men. Not EVERYONE but they are just smaller people here. My mission president is about my same height!

Well i just love you loads and tons and miss you oodles and noodles!!

Keep reading your scriptures and praying everyday! I want you to tell me how family prayer is going and are you getting it done kada gabii (every night)?

Love Your BIG Sis!... hehe

HAHA you are so silly. I cant believe mom hadnt found my charger until now... hmm. The money here is pesos. For every US dollar it equals 45 pesos! When we go out to eat its only around 50 pesos so just barely over $1 in America! CHEAP!!

Love you!