Monday, June 30, 2014

Fun facts for you all!!

This week was.... great!  But nothing too exciting.  Here we go for an update before I tell you some really fun facts that my companion and I came up with.  

They have fiestas here to celebrate the saints (catholic thing).  And in one village they have a tradition that whoever drives through their main street they spray them with water.  We had no idea about this and we were on our way to an appointment.  Then all the sudden, BAM.  Soaked!!!  They Filipinos were having a hoot and a holler that they were soaking foreigners!  It was soooo funny, and so awkward....  Love life here.

We had plans to go on exchanges twice this week but then both the companionship bailed because they got sick.  Sad week!  

We got new neighbors.  A Nigerian family.  Pastor Victor lives next door and they are already giving us pamphlets and cards....  However they do know we are missionaries... strange.

President Peterson is officially a goner.  He is now your's Ma and Pa.  He says he is excited to meet you!  Be sure to give him a big squeeze at his homecoming for me. :)  President and Sister Mangum are now here and this Friday we will have a zone conference to meet them and get to know them.  But President Peterson did stop by and share some delightful counsel with us and said good bye.  Sure gonna miss that man!  
We got a really great new investigator this week.  We went to go teach one of our other new families, and then we met their aunt.  She said she wanted to join so we also taught her.  She has an amazing desire to help her 23 year old son find the right path again.  We taught her about how the gospel is for imperfect people and gives everyone chance to repent and change and bring them back unto the fold of the Lord.  It was a powerful lesson with wet eyes.  I love opportunities to help others realize they have hope.  

We are in the midst of planning a big Stake Open House of the Stake Center here in San Pablo.  The stake leaders are really coming together and it is an amazing opportunity to see how they run things here in the Philippines.  It is a little different than us in America, but they are awesome!  
Also, amazing, 170 years ago, Joseph Smith's life was taken for the sake of the truth here on Earth.  I have pondered about him and his life and even read some talks about him.  I admire that man.  He had so many Christlike attributes and is such an example to us.  I am grateful for his life and the ways it has blessed my life.  

Ok sorry this week was just a little bit on the lamer side of things, but her are some funny facts for you all!!
1.  sometimes people like to rub our arms in hopes of taking our whiteness. hair too. 
2.  garments count as undershirts. 
3.  late for a meeting? just duck and scurry! you'll be invisible!
4.  who washes their hands? dirt and germs are part of the fun!boxers count as clothing
5.  filipinos like to wake up incredibly early and sleep all afternoon
6.  is your baby hungry? better feed it! who cares if we're in public! (i don't mind but poor elders!)
7.  if you're hot just shave your head! who cares your gender!  
8.  for the lack of walls some houses have... they sure have some nice electronics!
9.  opening the store for the day isn't even hard at all! just open your front window!
10.  if you're a man--anywhere is appropriate to pee!
11.  you may think that 2 foot wide alley between houses is just a space. but really that's the next road to turn on to a whole new neighborhood!
12.  everyone knows how to speak just fine until they start to pray. then they seem to forget the concept of volume. 
13.  rats and cats are normal counter dwellers!
14.  basketball attire: shorts and flip flops. yunlang.
15.  when in doubt: eat rice. 
16.  sometimes our less actives like to join other churches because their new church is just one ride from the church while ours is two.
17.  the difference between hot and cold is about three degrees. 
18.  probing questions are not a problem and even expected. "what is your name? where are you coming from? where are you going? where do you live? how many children do you have? what are their names and ages?" not even kidding. it is a very handy little custom for missionaries!
19.  hey joe! is their only greeting for foreigners.
20.  the whole country is full of joy and naked toddlers!

Ok well enjoy.  I love you all!!!!  Happy Fourth of July I guess, even though that holiday means nothing to me here.... 

Sister Waldrom
Doctrine and Covenants 61:36-39 (Come, Come Ye Saints)

Monday, June 23, 2014

Pride is the Stumbling Block to Zion.

So President leaves in a week.  I am sad.  I hate goodbyes.  He is the 
best mission president I could ask for.  We had Mission Leadership
Council and it was so good.  He went into depth about how the Book of
Mormon is the tool to fulfill the prophesy to gather Israel.  I
learned a lot about the 12 tribes of Israel, and how they will all come
back together again.  If you have got any sweet insights for me,
please feel free to enlighten me.

This week I carried my Book of Mormon in my hand.  Usually I just keep
it safe inside my bag, but then I was thinking, I need to show this
beaut!  So we were walking with it, and it totally changed our
attitudes about things.  We felt like we were carrying Laban's sword,
there is so much power in those pages.  I recommend it to all
missionaries.  It changes the whole feel of the work.

Also cool, I started a thing I like to call a vision book.  I have
different visions for different aspects of my life.  It is NOT a
trunky book!  But more of a collection of the different goals that I
have.  Some sisters have heard of it, and now everyone is kinda doin
it.  Cool I guess, just hope those newbies don't get trunky!

This week we had exchanges.  Sheesh those things are tiring.  Every
time you have to give your companion and the work all your focus and
effort, and man, I am pooped by Sunday.  I wish I had a bit more time
on P-day to sleep, but lets be real, that never happens.  I went on
Exchanges with Sister Williams (my old temporary companion) and Sister
Ika (one of my best friends in the mission who heads home in a few
weeks).  So obviously it was a good week.  They taught me a lot.  The
spirit was so strong in our lessons, and we really found some great
ways to help the people we were teaching.  I notice when we really
focus our lessons on Christ, the people's heart's change and they
desire to change their actions to be more aligned with the will of the

We were working with a soon to be depart missionary in our ward and
while we were walking, she saw one of her old coworkers.  We met her
and then even asked if we could share a message with her family.  She
totally let us in, we had an awesome lesson, then returned again and
she and her father in law committed to a baptismal goal date!  The
work always finds it's way to those prepared people. It is so cool to
be apart of!

The Jimenez family is kinda at a halt.  It is kind of hard to accept
but if you could all just keep them in your prayers, we know that the
Lord will find a way for them!  Thank you!

So some greatness that I have learned from my companion.  Pride.
Pride is basically the worst!  If you really think about it, it is the
root of all evil.  And it for real is the stumbling block to Zion.  My
assignment to read: "Beware of Pride" by Ezra Taft Benson.  We all
have weaknesses and can be culprits of the many qualities of Pride.  I
am working to remove all that from within and becoming more humble to
align myself with God's will.

Ok, well I love you all!!  Keep the faith!

Sister Waldrom
Doctrine and Covenants 6:33-37

Monday, June 16, 2014

"It is SO Friday the 13th."

Hello po, Ako si Sister Waldrom.  Naalala ba ninyo ako?  Baka, hindi.
Matagal na ang huling beses nadoon ako.  Pero ok lang, kaci nadito ako
sa Pilipinas at sobrang saya ang missionary work dito!  Mahal na mahal
ko kayo!

LOL just some tagalog lessons for you today.  So everyday is
completely different in the mission.  Keeps life exciting.  

Last week we got on a jeepney, we pass up our money for
payment to the front and the driver says, "Wag na, libre lang."  Which
means dont pay, its free.  So we were like... that is weird.  But then
he asked us which ward we were in... and we were like are you a
member?!  And he said he was in Ward 3, our ward!  We set up an
appointment and he was super nice and willing for us to visit.  So
Wednesday comes around and we head over.  His wife is super active and
we had heard about her husband having to drive his jeepney on Sunday.
They cheerfully welcomed us into their home.  When we went into the
lesson, we had a few different ideas of what we were going to share.
We were impressed to simply discuss faith and we shared Mosiah
23:21-22.  He completely opened up and so did his wife.  The spirit
filled the room and we heard their trials, and felt the Love of God so much.  
They know the truth, they know the way, now they need to seek for
 strength in the enabling power of the atonement.  The spirit just led
 us to say that there was a way back.And they took great joy in that hope.
It was a wonderful visit and we are returning this week to help them
 some more.

Thursday.  ZONE CONFERENCE.  President's last one.  It was
definitely a cry sesh for everyone at the end.  Sister Peterson's talk was
 on the doctrine of the Family and the President and Sister both did a
question and answer session on anything we wanted to ask.  It was glorious!
I learned so much!  They talked about their marriage, and oh how it reminded
me of how thankful I am for my parents.  Your marriage is an amazing example
to me!  All the discussions were so weird for us missionaries to
think about.  We all got a little trunky feelin, but I am working
through it.  Here are some insights that I learned from conference:

-The road to exaltation is through Gethsemane.  We all need to go
through our own Gethsemane to be fully ready to face the judgement
bar.  I took this to heart.  I was really thinking about my life
before the mission.  I was thinking about all the small mistakes I
made and I wasnt sure how I was going to be able to repent for all
those things, especially because I dont remember a lot of them!  I was
concerned.  Then when I saw President on Friday (I will get to that
story), I told him my concern.  This was his advice: "Sister, the holy
ghost 'sanctifies'.  Through His guidance to you and your good
choices from following Him, He sanctifies and cleanses you from those
past  sins.  Especially in your service, your sins have been forgiven.
It says three times in the Doctrine and Covenants that 'because of
your service, your sins are forgiven thee'.  Don't worry sister, your
sins are forgiven."  And just when I was stressing that I wouldn't
make it to heaven.  Such an interesting insight that I think we all need
to understand!!

-We also talked a lot about Priesthood keys.  Do you realize that not
a whole lot of members hold actual keys?  It is interesting to think
about. But he emphasized that we must respect all priesthood keys, no
matter who the person is holding them.

On Friday, we planned to have exchanges with the sisters we live
with.  We had just started singing our hymn before companionship
study.  Then all the sudden a sister serving in a different area just
came into our house crying hysterically.  She was having hardcore
stomach pains for three days and went to two hospitals prior but they
didnt do anything apparently, so she felt like she had no where else
to go.  Me, being the experienced missionary of the hospitals in this
area, took her to the "doctors hospital" and there she entered the ER.
I was with her and watched her through buckets (figuratively) in front
of my face and then eventually she was taken in by the
gastroenterology specialist.  Craziness.  We stayed there all day.
President came and visited and then he took us to lunch close by.  Oh
man, that time was golden!  I asked him so many questions!  He
basically taught me, Sister Wilson, and his assistants how to find a
husband and basically everything about life.  I wrote it all down
after.  He just has so much knowledge!

The Jimenez family is doing ok.  Really trying to help them receive
that personal witness of the the truth.  Any advice?!

We had a cool northern philippines broadcast for stake conference.
Elder Cook spoke and other general authorities.  Good times!

Cool idea I am trying to start, carrying the Book of Mormon in my hand
while I work.  Feel like it gives me so much power!  

I love you all!

Sister Waldrom
2 Nephi 9:41

Monday, June 9, 2014

My life is never the same.

Well.  President is trying to get fresh blood in the mission so Sister
Tua'one was transferred this past week.  I was really sad because I
loved feeding off of her wealth of knowledge.  She was the best
companion I have ever had!  She will also be a forever friend.  We've
already made a pinkey promise to see  Kid Cudi in concert
together one day.  But yeah, I was like hard core stressing when I
found out she was leaving me.  I was scared because I have to train a
new Sister Training Leader in this new area and I am just gonna die in
the corner.   But then God blessed me for the thousandth time in my
mission, with wonderful SISTER WILSON.  We were in the same district
in the MTC.  And were we tight there?  YES.  She was the only one who
understood my humor!  So is this companionship awesome?  Yes.  I love
her.  And so would all of you.

So President drove us home from Transfer Day to our house.  We were
sitting there in silence, and I decided to perk up and this was our
"President, I hear you like cars.  What is your dream car?"
"Hmmm, Porsche 911s."
"President, I somehow knew you would want a Porsche."
"What about you Sister Waldrom?"
"Fisker Karma."
"Great choice.  What about everyday kind of car?"
"All time favorite, Land Rover LR4.  What about you President?"
(Reaches to the back seat for a high five!) "Yes Sister!  I love Land
Rover, But I want the sport."
"Well President, you have great taste in cars, yes you do."

even more now after that conversation.  And I asked him in my last
email what his greatest advice to me before he goes home would be,
then he said, "Let's get together and talk before I leave. keep
reminding me and we'll make it happen. I would love that."  Well, I
would love that too President.  I am going to miss him dearly.

So we had a mini typhoon this week, our power went out.  We
survived, stayed in side for a couple hours.  These storms are
nuts here!  I have videos to show you eventually.

This week we visited a less active and we walked up and she was
reading her scriptures and daughters of his kingdom on a hammock.
Then when we sat down with her she explained how she was reading the
chapter on visiting teaching and praying in her heart that someone
would come visit her soon.  Then we walked up.  She was crying and it
was an answer to her prayer!  So amazing how God leads us here.  Then
she went on to tell us her conversion, she was baptized at age 19,
entered the MTC when she was 21 to serve in Australia, then while
there, found out she had cancer, came home received a priesthood
blessing, eventually she was healed, married a nonmember who doesnt
like the church and that is why she cant come.  But her faith is still
so strong and it is people like her who make this work a tear jerker!
Amazing people here, I tell ya.

The Jimenez Family.  Progressing!  We are working on helping them
receive a personal witness.  That is the current struggle but they are
doing really well and progressing.  And yesterday we told the ward
council about them and they are so thrilled and want to be involved in
helping fellowship!  So the ship is sailing, but we will see when it
harbors into the baptismal waters.  Please keep them in your prayers!

Well, all is well here.  Things are moving too fast but I am oh so
happy and blessed to be here.  I love you all and Pumili and Tama!

Sister Waldrom
Genesis 3:10