As you know this last week was Halloween. I was really excited to experience my first Halloween here. But I learned quickly that they don't celebrate it here. Instead they have a different holiday on November 1st which is called Ang Araw ng Patay or in English The Day for the Dead. It was crazy!
The traditions of the holiday are similar to the Spanish tradition and is a day where they honor their passed on family members. The best way I can explain it is like memorial day on steroids! Everyone travels to the cemetery and stays there all day long. Some people even sleep at the cemetery! Some of the graves of wealthy people are like house and even have air conditioning! The Filipinos are really centered on family, it is really cool how much they respect their ancestors. Really there were SO many people in Cabiao, it was crazy! I never have seen so many people. I swear all of Nueva Ecija was in Cabiao, The traffic was at a stand still for many hours. Motorcycles and trikes were driving on the shoulder space on the side of the road. Anyway, the holiday made it really hard to do our work. Everyone was at the cemetery! It was a bit discouraging, but I realized that it really is out of my control and that God sees our effort and knows our hearts.
I have gained a greater love for the scriptures and love the book of Mormon. I have been trying to get to know the Book of Mormon better as well as familiarize myself with the Doctrine and Covenants. (which is a gold mine by the way) I encourage all of you to read it! I honestly think that we take what we have as members of the church for granted and not spend enough time being "students of the scriptures" as President Ardern the Philippines Area President says. I try to dive into the word because the scriptures are truly the key to personal revelation. Many times I receive an answer to my prayer through the scriptures or the words of modern prophets. I just want to ask all of you, as members of the Church do we really know the doctrine taught to us in the scriptures? Cause I don't feel like I really do! I am learning more from the scriptures everyday and have been filled with light and joy from their pages. I don't mean to lecture, I just would like to share the joy I have felt from reading them and joy I have felt with sharing them with others.
Missionary work is definitely like a roller coaster. It has its good days and its bad, but it is SO worth it and SO rewarding. I love you guys! I pray for you and know that God is watching over all of us! Go out and share you light with someone today! God is mindful of our every act and will reward us accordingly.
You have a great week!
|Me and my companion- hike we went on.|
|View from my window-So beautiful!|