and that is what i’m calling this next chapter of my life!
so sorry if i didn’t get a chance to email you back personally this week! the time seems to have gotten away from me! so i’ll jump right into it:
- awesome: the fact that it has been raining a little bit off and on. salamat salamat salamat. just when we think we’re gonna die, HF blesses us with a little rain!
- awesome #2: the area broadcast yesterday. broadcast from SLC and i love it. broadcasts always make me a little home sick, but just for a minute. they are such a blessing though and as a mission they keep me sane! its good to know there are people in the place that i come from, who understand what its like in the place i am now! i will always forever have a special bond with those people who have been to the phils. i just don’t know if you can really understand what its like here, until you’ve lived here. that’s why i’m so grateful for the americans here in our mission! we are so few now! but when we get to see each other (So so rarely haha) even if we don’t know each other we just have an automatic bond. i am so grateful for the the area broadcasts though and the church’s care of members here!
- awkward: getting hard core rejected. haha. i had to resist the urge to laugh the other day as we OYMed an old man who ALWAYS is sitting on a bench near our apt. he literally lives on that bench and watches the day go by. so naturally, i wanted to give him a BOM for him to read while he sits there all day. but nope. he doesn’t want one! we started to tell him our purpose as missionaries and he said (in english!!) “STOP IT” and then explained in cebuano that if we were trying to convince him of anything he wants us to go away and convince someone else haha #hardhearted #themissionarylife #iloveit #haha
- this week was good! we had ZTM, exchanges, and other stuff i don’t remember haha. it was all good and the week was pretty calm until we received word that the Palompon elders were getting e-transferred. you know what that means. emergency transferred. real transfers aren’t for 2 more weeks. so yeah… we don’t really know why but we do know that now we’re taking their area over! so our area is literally HUGE now. as in out of control huge! its like we’re whitewashing, but also trying to keep our area thriving as well. its a balance between keep both areas alive now! i know that with the help of the Lord we can DO IT! because this isn’t our work, its HIS. we just get the opportunity and priviledge to assist in it. if He wanted it to be done, He’d do it. but instead we get to help! and what a great work it is!!!
- so that’s life for the next 2 weeks. i’m praying that i get to stay in palompon for the next cycle. don’t feel like my work here is done and hope that Pres. Maurer feels the same way.
- i’m attaching pics. sorry this email is short! hope the pics make up for it!
1 // district activity
2 // inv fam
3 // i ate this pink fish! cool, huh?
its true! this is cebuano for saying that i’m 9 months in the mission now, and have 9 months left. time is tooooooooo fast.
TM. me, my comp, and the only other american in our zone. he’s from ut but is half filipino. so basically i’m the only white person in our zone hahah
ZTM lunch. i love sis arais!
1 // less active we found by following the spirit!
2 // super cool shell! its alive!
3 // random sign we found haha
4 // working in the elders area…i mean our area now!
that means that for 9 months i’ve been showering out of bucket, killing mosquitoes daily, speaking a very foreign language through the gift of tongues, conquering my fear of cockroaches, having a constant prayer in my heart, been given strength to continue through the inescapable humidity, and 9 more months to continue to the have the most wonderful, worthwhile, uplifting, strengthening experience of my LIFE! i still feel like a baby in the mission. i can’t believe that i’m one of the older missionaries in this mission now! i think of how I looked up to the older missionaries when I arrived the field! they were so fully of wisdom and spiritual strength. i feel like i’m not as awesome as I perceived them to be! haha but i continue on! continue to strive to be what Heavenly Father would have me be! 9 months gone, 9 months left!
this week was good. and fast! and sad news this computer won’t let me send pics…sayang. so you’ll have to wait to see my 1/2 mark picture!
- awesome: the small miracles that happen everyday. it doesn’t matter if they’re small. because they’re still miracles! for example. i forgot to refill my bag with pamphlets are article of faith cards. i love to give away the article of faith cards to people, but when i most wanted to give one away, I realized i forgot to restock my bag! sayang! i searched through my bag thoroughly, hoping to find one, but to no avail! later in the day when i really really needed some i reached in my bag to get a pamphlet to give away. neatly tucked inside my bag were 3 article of faith cards that were definitely not there before- perfect for the 3 people we were talking to. Heavenly Father is so mindful of us in our weaknesses/my weakness of forget to restock my bag! 🙂
- awkward: the fact that i drink about 5 liters of water everyday. and don’t have to go to the bathroom that often…thus proving how much i sweat. its incredible. and incredibly gross haha. i’m grateful for clean, safe water to drink! the mission really does take care of us!
- i’ve been very reflective this week since i hit my halfway mark. As i start on this second leg of my mission journey, I’ve been thinking of the exhortation in 3 Nephi 12:48 for us to be perfect. I’m grateful for the further clarity in footnote b of Matt. 5:48 that tells us perfect means, “complete, finished, or fully developed”. i know i’m nowhere near this! but i’m grateful for the time on the mission to really strive to become like HIM. i truly am the “weak and simple” (D&C 1:23)
- be grateful for utah’s winter freeze that kills cockroaches and other bugs! ’nuff said.
- america really is the land of promise… ’nuff said.
- service really does soften hearts. we did lots of laba for a lady this week and its incredible to see the changes in peoples hearts when we serve them!
- thanks for your love and support of me! i am so grateful to you all!
my time is up. the church is true. i love you!
is it really june? what is happening? time is going so weirdly fast.
how are you all? thanks for emailing me! so glad to hear that dad is ok…hope the coming news is good news too. i pray for you all the time. so grateful for the tender mercies our families experiences. the Lord is so mindful of us! and for that i am so grateful!
this week was good, but hot. it rained finally yesterday. but not for long. long enough to stop sweating for a few minutes though so that was nice 🙂 hey can someone let me know what the average daily temp/humidity is here? in palompon, leyte. thanks!
well this week was for the books. we work really really hard. so tired at the end of everyday. we teach 40+ lessons every week.
- awkward: ok let me preface this one by saying that i literally have not ever had such a hilarious/awkward/unbelievable experience yet on my mission. ok. so we were at a bakery, buying a cake for some RCs who are about to hit their year mark! while waiting, i start to talk to the man in front of me in line. just trying to fulfill my missionary duty to talk to everyone! the man is fairly old, in his 60s, and even though i’m talking to him in cebuano, he talks back to me in english. he keeps asking about me, and i keep trying to steer his questions back to the gospel. to talk about the gospel, but not me! he tells me he’s a retired professor, and his wife has died. he asks if i’m single, how old i am, where i’m from, etc. i’m trying to bring it back to the gospel. finally he says, “i’m getting old, and i’m looking for someone to take care of me…where are you from again?” haha. i was trying so hard to NOT laugh. luckily they gave us the cake we ordered right at that time (divine, inspired timing!) and i politely bid farewell to the old man. meanwhile all the bakery workers smiled to themselves as we walked away. it was truly a hilarious experience. my companion and i are still laughing about it all these days later!
- awkward #2: the superstitions that i hear. like, if you eat the leftovers of a pregnant person you’ll fall asleep. or, if you drop a fork you have a male visitor coming. if its a spoon you have a female visitor coming! i just always think of mom ragging on all these “old wives tales” and that’s exactly what it is! these people need the gospel! haha
- awesome: experiencing the gift of tongues tangibly. i testify that in the past, words truly have been put into my mouth. but this week, when trying to express some thoughts that are difficult to say in cebuano, i literally felt my mouth being moved. it was like a subtle tingling sensation around my lips that helped for form my mouth in the way needed to pronounce the words. it only lasted for a split second, but it was so tangible. it really strengthens my testimony that the HF is very aware of me and my situation and He never fails to help and bless His children!
- tender mercy: remember who my patriarchal blessing mysteriously disappeared. well very very long story short, it was returned to me this week! i’m so grateful! i knew it would find its way back to me the second i realized it was missing! i’m grateful its back in my possession, and hopefully hasn’t been read. the Lord is so merciful!
- i’m almost out of time. sorry this email is short-ish. i just want to say that i am so happy! so happy with everything in my life right now! great leaders, wonderful companion, clean water, safe food, and wonderful investigator. i feel so blessed to be serving. i am so grateful for this gospel! i KNOW its true! i tell people all the time that if I didn’t know that our message was true, I wouldn’t have come on the mission. and that’s 10000% true! Because its true, I’m here, and i’m sharing the good news with others!
i love you all! thank you for your support of me! i feel your prayers and fasting. I LOVE YOU
until next week!
sister brereton 🙂
1 // members
2-3 // me and my beloved comp. we’re friends for life
4 // fhe with members. i look like a giant!
1 // a member boy caught a rat with wings..i mean a bat!
2 // comp and i cooling off in front of the fan haha
3 // the tiniest puppy i’ve ever seen
4 // baptism! of Ivy. her dad is a RC and baptized her! how cool is that???