Sunday, March 22, 2015

Carabao from our travels today

Beautiful countryside in Moises Padilla

We arrived in Moises Padilla shortly before 9:00 this morning after a two hour drive.  We brought an Elder to pick up a few things before attending Church at the small branch.  The door was wide open to a house that had been converted to serve as a place of worship.  The windows were all open and fans hanging from the ceiling whirled, moving the warm moist air.  We could hear children singing “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”.  There were a few sisters having a lesson for Relief Society.  The youth were upstairs having class and members of the priesthood were still getting organized.  Everything stopped as we walked in and everyone in the branch came and greeted us and shook our hands.

Children singing with their leaders
I went to Relief Society where they were having a lesson in Tagalog language, I read along in English.  It was the lesson “Living Joyfully in Troubled Times”.  The lesson is about after World War II and the challenges the people faced.  When they were done reading through the lesson, one sister turned to me and asked, “Please teach us Sister”.  The spirit was strong as I looked into their faces, my sisters in the gospel of Jesus Christ.  I asked the sister who asked me this poignant question, “Are you the Relief Society President?   She answered no, that she was the 1st Counselor in the Relief Society Presidency and also the Seminary Teacher.  She and her daughter were baptized last October.  One sister was baptized yesterday and we were able to witness her confirmation.  The third sister was baptized in January of this year; she has four young children.  They spoke little English, but we communicated the best we could.  They shared their joys and hardships and their faith in Jesus Christ.
Sweet Sisters in Moises Padilla Branch Relief Society
As Sacrament meeting was starting, George leaned over and told me they had asked me to play the piano . . a little Casio keyboard and then we would give a talk.  I walked over to the keyboard and the children were sitting so close to me, it was difficult to play the music on the strange keyboard.  They didn’t seem to know the tune of a couple of the hymns so I even sang along to try and help.  We later learned no one plays the piano so music is just expressed.

Elders Pack and Pierce
I contact new missionaries, to see how they are doing.  I loved Elder Pierce’s comment regarding the big culture change.  He said, “It is different, but it is where Heavenly Father wants and needs me, so I know I can do it with his help”.  We love working with the missionaries, as they use the saying and I agree, “you are the best!”.

Example of Filipino resourcefulness--reusing a juice bottle as a sprinkler :-)
Notice 4 riders on the motorbike--and the busy traffic we encounter

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