So first of all, how on earth is it Monday again??? This week was pretty busy. And pretty sweaty. I don't really know why they call it rainy season. It should just be called sweaty season. Because I sweat way more than it's rained! But I'm not complaining. Sta. Cruz is awesome!
Let me start with the big news first. So much amazing stuff happened last week I forgot to tell you that EJ and Ella passed their interviews! EJ is 14 and Ella is 11 and I love them with all my heart. They were baptized with their 8 year old brother, Jhed, on Saturday. And what a baptism it was! Let me just tell ya about it. So we get there and we start at the standard Filipino time of 30 minutes late. That's fine. Then the speaker doesn't show up, so our amazing ward mission leader throws one together because he's the bomb. Then we're told the ward missionaries and us are doing a musical number so one of the ward missionaries stands up and calls out all of the ward missionaries by name until the majority of the congregation is standing at the front of the room stumbling through "I Love to See The Temple" to a tune all their own.
Finally, it's time for the baptisms. Open the font! And lo and behold, there in the font is the water from the Elders baptism earlier, and as is the norm to Sta. Cruz, it is brown. And I mean BROWN. But those kids are super stars and they got in anyway. And they stayed there for awhile. Because CJ, our baptizer, was a first-timer and it took him a few tries to get them all the way under the water. It didn't help that everyone in the room was shouting, "No, no, his foot! No, no, his hand!" After Jhed went under 3 times, EJ twice, and Ella 3 times, their dad (Brother Makulit) puts his hands up in the air and says, "Perfect!" Haha :) Since Jed is only 8, he was confirmed right after his baptism. By the Bishop. Who was wearing his street clothes. And gave the blessing in pure English. I'm sure Jhed understood. OH wait! We speak Tagalog in the Philippines!
By this point, I was a little bit frustrated. But that's when each of the kids stood up and bore their perfect, little testimonies. And I remembered something I heard once: Even on our worst days, we are still the true church of Jesus Christ. And NOTHING can change that. And nothing can stop the spirit from testifying of that. So there, ya have it. The church is true.
I got to go on exchanges with Sister Johnson this week. She's been out since the end of January and I LOVE her! It was just fun to talk to her because she's so... real. Sometimes missionaries tend to feel like they can't be themselves, they have to be perfect and super-human. Especially STLs. But Sister Johnson gets it. She reminded me that I need to make the work more fun and just be myself. She reminded me who I was :)
We also had MLC. But I'll save that for another day. I love you all tons and I am so thankful for the love and support you give to me. I feel your prayers every day. Mahal ko po kayo!
XOXO, Sister Brown
|Exchanges w/ Sis Johnson|
|Walking through puddles|
|Pres and Sis Mangum|
|Irish and Ina|
|Kitty cat siomai|
|The baptismal font|