Mission Call

Mission Call

Dropping CJ off at the MTC!

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