Philippines Cauayan Mission

Philippines Cauayan Mission

Monday, April 25, 2016

100 Days Mark

Well I want to start this week's letter by congratulating Sam on finishing her mission! I, on the other hand, just hit my 100 days left mark! I only know that because the elder next to me right now is in my batch going home and he is counting. But I knew this time would come sooner or later... just came a lot faster than I thought! But I'm glad every thing went well with Sam's homecoming. Sounds like the family had a great time being together!

Also before I start on this week's letter, I will say that I walked around the entire city of Roxas trying to find a different net shop to see if it would read my sd card. Found one net shop but they didn't have internet so that didn't work. We'll try them again next week. I put my sd card in a members laptop last Monday night and it worked just fine so I don't know what the problem is here. The elder next to me also has a 64 gb card and the computer won't read it either. So once again I won't be able to send pictures--which is too bad cause one of them was kinda cool. We were walking back home Wednesday night and this girl in a white dress started following us. Her long hair was draped over her face as well so it was just like in a scary movie or something. I'll be honest, it actually was pretty scary when she started following right behind us. It was funny though as well. I asked her if I could take a picture with her and she still didn't talk! But she stood there for a picture so I took it as a yes. Anyway, hopefully I'll be able to send the pictures next week. 

By the way, while walking around I saw a family we taught all the time back when I was in San Pedro. Totally forgot their name but it was way exciting seeing them again. They all remembered me believe it or not! They actually noticed me before I saw them. But they are doing great and seeing each other again was really fun! 

As for this week, Monday we had FHE with the Cordova family. They are awesome. One of their sons is on a mission right now then the oldest son is in the branch presidency. Everyone else in their family was just baptized in December then the rest of them in February. They are a huge help to the branch, especially with the youth. They are all magnifying their callings really well. But FHE was really fun with them. Can't wait to play some of these Filipino games with the family when I get home. 

Tuesday was zone conference in Ilagan. Really good time. We were with the Ilagan zone and both zones from Tuguegarao. So I got to see a lot of my friends namely Carrington, Estuaria and Romo. The whole zone conference was based on the Book of Mormon. Pretty cool since we recently finished the power read of the Book of Mormon. Never ended up telling you about that but yes I did finish it. I actually finished a week before I transferred here to Burgos. But studying about and from the Book of Mormon the whole time was a blast. 
Wednesday was back to a normal day. We switched aour schedule again and went out in the morning to try and avoid the heat. Didn't really work. Got hot by like 9 and stayed extremely hot the entire day. So we were only back at the apartment for a little while around lunch before we went out again since having the fan blow hot air on you isn't all the relaxing. We met some less active young men this week that were really active back in the day but have been gone for over a year now. We taught two of them Wednesday, Ian and Josen. In all there are 4 of them that we're working with to come back and so far it is going really good. They all came to church yesterday and we played ball this morning with all 4 of them along with a couple of other members. President Ancheta is also a big help in helping them return. He was the branch president back when they were active so they know him really well. President played ball with us this morning and does a lot to help the young men. 

Thursday we worked in Masigun then Cullalabo. The stand out lesson for Thursday was with Nanay Diego. She's been having some trouble with one of her neighbors. The first time I shared with her when I was here this lady saw us and just started yelling at her and calling her a liar and some other stuff. I have no idea but Nanay Diego is super nice and I know she wouldn't do anything wrong. So since that time the problem hasn't gotten any better. Nanay ended up going to the Barangay, or leaders of the area for help but nothing has happened yet. So we thought we'd drop by and see how she was doing and share a little message with her. Since our area is so small we get to go by quite a few of members which is actually pretty nice. So we just talked about contention and ways to deal with it and why sometimes things like this happen in our lives. Instead of being a lesson where we do most the talking, we ended up just all talking together and sharing experiences to help Nanay. This is the first time Nanay has had a problem like this so that's why she said she is having a hard time with it. She's still going strong though and doing what she can to end this problem. 

Friday we took off in the morning and went to Cauayan to get Elder Castillo's ear checked up. He said he's been having a hard time hearing well so we've been using some ear drops for a couple days then went to Cauayan on Friday to get it looked at by the ENT there. After a long wait he finally got to see the doctor and was in there for like 5 minutes. Waited ages just for 5 minutes! Haha just goes that way sometimes. But we thought it was because it was full of wax and needed cleaning but apparently it was way more complex. Something to do with the heat, dust and allergies. Then something to do with the tube that connects your ear to your brain would swell or something making it hard to hear. No idea if that really happens but oh well. You should have heard me try to explain this to Sister Rahlf on the phone--haha--probably sounded like I had no clue what I was talking about! I guess that's partly true though. Anyway, he gave Elder Castillo a ton of pills to take then we will go back May 5. Then after over an hour of jeepneys we finally got back to Burgos. Oh we also ate at KFC while in Cauayan so that was awesome. Super good. But we got back and went straight out to work since it was already around 3:00. Got to teach Nanay and Tatay Actson. They are less active and we've tried many times to visit them since I've been here but this was the first time we had success. They are actually really nice. We don't know yet the reason why they are struggling coming to church but at least we were able to share a message with them and get to know them.

Saturday we did our weekly planning. Thought about going to the church again so we could do it in the air conditioning but we ended up just doing it at the apartment. It actually didn't take that long this time which was nice. Finished that, ate lunch then took off to Masigun again. So there's this person there that makes 'donuts' which are more like scones but they are really good. So stopped for a little and ate a tone of those. Then we taught April and LeslieAnn Lopez. They are still progressing really well but they didn't come to church once again. I think April is really beginning to gain a testimony that it is true. The reason they didn't come to church is because they "had somewhere to go." Not very specific but we'll go with it. We'll work more with them this week. We were only able to teach them once last week so hopefully we'll get to twice this week. 

Sunday was  pretty good day. So the branch president's son just came home from his mission this week and I know he's going to be a big help to the branch. He was the first one there and had the sacrament all set up just to find out that Caliguian has sacrament before us. But at least he did the other branch a favor! He ended up teaching priesthood class and also spoke in sacrament. Last week we didn't even have priesthood class so there is improvement already. Even though there was only him, the missionaries and 2 other men there at 8:30 we went ahead and started class. More came in by the time we ended and we actually had a good class. Sacrament meeting was pretty good as well. We had no investigators there, which was too bad, but we did have 6 less actives there for the first time in years. 4 were those young men, Ian, Josen, JV, and Justin. Then Sisters Monique and Crystal. We're excited about all of them coming to church. Having an investigator would have topped it off but we're still happy with who was there. Then Mark, the new return missionary, worked with us Sunday afternoon. We had a good time hearing some of the things that happened to him on his mission and comparing what his mission was like to what it's like here in Cauayan. 

In all it was a pretty good week! We did pretty well work wise and made some progress with some less actives. Played a couple good games of basketball this morning as well so that made today fun. I think I'm gonna be super sore by tomorrow though and I have a massive blister on the bottom of my foot. I've gotten lazy with the exercise since I've been in Burgos. Anyway, hope you all have a great week! Congratulations again to Sam! No, you being home doesn't make me trunky haha I still have work to do here! Love you all!

Love Elder Haacke

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