Monday, December 8, 2014

Agyaman ak

  I am sorry this is going to be so short. Our internet cafe didn't have connection for the longest time! :( but anyway the title of this email is Agyaman ak which means "I am grateful" in Ilokano. I may be catching onto the thanksgiving spirit a little late this year. But better late than never right? The first thing I am grateful for is your email mommy. It's actually what has inspired my attitude of gratitude today :) of course I am grateful for the emails from all of my friends and family. I am actually especially happy because I am online right now at the same time as Madison! I have missed her so much. And of course thank you Lexi Turley who so devotedly emails and chats with me every week! You're the best Lex :) Also, Monique emailed me this week as well! Monique I will reply next week! I don't have enough time this week :( but you can imagine how happy I was to open my email and see messages from some of the people I appreciate most in my life.
     Some other great news that I am so grateful for came from our MLC meeting when I got to talk to Sister Perez about what is going on in Narvacan. The Claveria children (I sent their picture before from my last day in Narvacan) are getting baptized on the 13th of December! This is a quick part of Sister Perez's email that she sent to me this week. an excerpt from my email.
Fourth, Sunday-- our IBDs' dad (Brother Claveria), who is an LA, came to church. We were amazed as he stood up and bore his testimony. He bawled and expressed his gratitude for Sister Sawada and I, because we found their family. He said that he felt that he needed change and we came. :) It was so heart-melting.
     When we found Brother Claveria, we knew that God had placed him in our path. He knew all of the doctrine that we taught to him and his children, and his children were the most receptive investigators I have every taught! It's just that he was ashamed for falling back into his past habits of drinking and smoking. I am sure it wasn't easy for Sister Perez and her companion now (Sister Campos) to finally get him to come to church. But I am so so glad and grateful that he is now coming to church and taking the action to repent and change his life for the better. And this time, he is helping his daughter and son enter the waters of baptism. And then there is Mhay, we all remember Mhay right? She will be getting baptized on the 19th! Of course I am way bummed I won't be able to be at their baptisms, but I am so grateful to be able to hear about their progress as they strive to live the gospel of Jesus Christ. Also, I have been writing back and forth to the Bamba family and they are doing just great :) They continue to attend the church activities. Stephen really enjoys seminary. And they continue to be so loving to the missionaries and give them referrals all the time! They really just want to share the gospel with everyone.
     Well it's a little obvious I got too excited chatting with my friends and I have run out of time! :( I guess I will just quickly say that I know that it is easy for me to be grateful at this time because there are so many obvious blessings that I feel being poured out in front of me. I am happy to say that I feel that I deserve to feel this happiness because of the hard work and time that I have put into working with these people. But before I come off as proud or boastful I would like to close with the words from one of the best missionaries in the Book of Mormon.
 "do not boast in my own strength,nor in my own wisdom; bubehold, my joy is full, yea, my heart is brim with joyanwill rejoice in my God. Yea, know that am nothingato my strength am weak; therefore will not boast of myself, but will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all thingsyea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which wwill praise his name forever.
Sister Sawada

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