Monday, December 30, 2013

Maligayang Bagong Taon!‏

Love the new shirt! Thanks Mama!
Helloooo from the Philippines! Hope you all had the best Christmas ever! Ours was really kind of just another day, except our couple missionaries fed us dinner in their apartment and I felt really overwhelmed by how American it all was. Also this week has been a good one! I've been freezing all week and come to find out, it hasn't gotten below 75 degrees. So I'm just gonna stay in the Pines forever. Side note, our Branch President's name is President Escobido, pronounced Scooby-Doo. You wish your branch president was that cool.

Challenge of the week, see how many times you can find a Filipino with the white girl that speaks Tagalog on Facebook. I can't even count how many times someone has asked to take a picture with me or with their kid or how many times someone walks up and very obviously takes a picture of me like I'm an alien haha :) I can only imagine the captions...

Here in San Jose, things are great! However, the work is super duper slow. We have no investigators. But we have 4 recent converts so we just teach them. They are the most amazing people ever! I told you about Brother Michael last week. Every time we teach him, I just am more and more amazed by him. Yesterday he brought his friend, Leo, to church and we taught him after with Brother Michael and Brother Romel and it was the coolest thing! Leo was really, really quiet. For some reason in Batangas, people are afraid to talk to Americans even though we speak Tagalog (kinda...). But I asked him what he believed about God and after some silence he looked up and said he was just realizing how much he needed to start going to church and change his life. The feeling in the room was just one of absolute reverence and I could just feel how much Heavenly Father loved the 3 men in that room. It's getting a lot easier to see people that way, as children of God and as my brothers and sisters. And that makes it a lot easier to love them :)

So since it's New Year's, that means New Year's Resolutions. We all know that means resolving to lose weight. And we all know how that will go. Week 1, eat salads and go to the gym everyday. Week 2, eat a whole box of girl scout cookies and wish yourself better luck next year. So instead of making resolutions you know you won't keep, make one that is of eternal importance. Share the gospel. It doesn't have to be hard. Pray and ask Heavenly Father to help you know who is ready. When the names come into your mind, don't judge them or rationalize not following the spirit. You don't know who needs the gospel, but Heavenly Father does. And then pray for help. Ask your local missionaries to practice with you, they would love to do that! And take 20 seconds of courage and just do it. That resolution will mean more than any other resolution you could make. 

Love you all more than the world! Hope you know you are amazing and that you are important. You can make a difference. Have a great week!

XOXO, Sister Brown

San Jose Sisters

San Jose Branch Christmas party
Destiny's Grandchildren and No Direction
Sis. Banzali and Nico

We won! 
They love us so they had us play the flour game at the Branch Christmas party
They go all out for the branch Christmas party here
That thing is my kasama! hehe Love her!!
Trekking through the jungle
I LOVE headbands!
Christmas Eve sleepover
Christmas Eve present
Kasama Ko
Christmas Eve 2013
Christmas Eve dinner

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