Monday, March 29, 2010

Happy Easter!

Dear Family-

Life in the Philippines is continuing as normal. I do have a cool story to tell though so I will drop that before anythingJ

So…Thursday Elder Duco and I went on splits. He went to this place called Los Banos, and I stayed here. I got a new companion and he worked here for the day. Now, this wasn’t any normal companion, he was this guy from Canada who spoke French. His name is Elder LeBlanc and he has possibly the coolest accent that I have ever heard in my life. So, our day started out like any normal day-studying in the morning then work before we hit up lunch. We decided to go to this lady that we have been teaching for the past little bit named Maloo. We hopped a jeepney and went to Ate Maloos house and started teaching her. So, in the plan of salvation pamphlet, there are 3 questions-1) where do we come from, 2) why are we here, and 3) where do we go after we die? Elder LeBlanc is just one transfer ahead of me (I actually saw him in the MTC cause he was there the same time that I was) so we are about on the same par with each other Tagalog wise. So, I initially wanted to teach the 2nd and 3rd question, but, because of some circumstances I decided we were just gonna teach the 2nd question and then tie in the 3rd lesson (don’t be confused, you don’t really need to remember all these numbers.) So, I started teaching and taught about the 2nd question-why we are here, what we should be doing while we are here, how we can do those things more efficiently, etc. and then handed over the floor to Elder LeBlanc. When I started teaching the lesson, I had this little kid in the back of my mind that kept saying, in the “are we there yet?” voice, “did you give her a baptismal goal date yet?” over and over and OVER again. At first it was just like yea yea, I’ll get to that when she seems ready, but as Elder LeBlanc taught I got the strongest feeling that she needed a baptismal goal date. No matter what response I ran through my head, the thought was clear, almost as if someone was screaming at me “GIVE HER A BAPTISMAL GOAL DATE.” Now, you have to realize that being on splits, you get no knowledge prior to arriving at the apartment that night about the area, the investigators, or their specific goals. Because of a misunderstanding, Elder Duco and I waited for them for an hour and a half until they arrived (finally at 9:30) at their apartment and then Elder LeBlanc and I left-so basically I am saying that we got home WAY late and didn’t talk about our work for the next day cause Elder Duco and I had already planned. So, fast-forward to the next day. Elder Canada and I are walking to the appointment and he asks what we are gonna teach, and I tell him the plan of salvation. That was it. That was our conversation. Ok, fast-forward again to the teaching. So, while Frenchie was teaching I kept saying over in my head, how are we gonna give them a baptismal goal date when not all of them are here? BAM. In walks the father who I had never seen before. How am I gonna offer a baptismal goal date to someone who doesn’t know what we are teaching? BAM, Elder LeBlanc does a re-cap. Finally, I was just like how in the WORLD am I gonna tell Elder LeBlanc to extend a BGD when he has no clue about these people. Almost 3 milliseconds after I thought this Elder LeBlanc drops a BGD on them. My jaw just dropped (which isn’t a good thing because the floor wasn’t that sturdy in the first place and it could have broke) and so we continued out the lesson. As we were walking home, I was like dude how did you know that they needed a baptismal goal date, and he was like uh…I don’t know, I just gave it to them. Yea, he didn’t raise the dead, or heal a leper, but it was cool in itself.

That same day something that I will probably remember for the rest of my life happened. A few days before, I had seen these two white guys completely smashed out of their minds. There were like 64376 beer bottles around them, and they were speaking “frunk” (for the record, that is French spoken by drunk people). I went up to the people who were not drinking around them and I asked where they were from and they said Canada, so when I learned that LeBlanc and I were gonna become companions for a day I wanted to go tract them, just to hear this French coolness. So, Elder LeBlanc and I decided to head over. That day I had been kind of down in the dumps because of a few things and so I was kind of emotionally dragging. Well, we got to the place that we were gonna teach, and the drunk chaps weren’t there, but there was this awesome nanay who, just maybe, was the epitome of kindness. We started talking with her, and found out that she is a member. I hadn’t seen her before so I was like you know, we haven’t seen you at church for a little bit, what happened? She was like well, I used to be really diligent in my church attendance, but I stopped going. Knowing that church attendance doesn’t just randomly stop just like that I asked what happened, and she told me it was a “secret” and that other missionaries know. I was like ok, well that’s fine. You have your agency, and you can do with it what you will. We asked her if we could share a message with her and she said sure, so I turned to quite possibly one of the most awesome scriptures in the new testament-Luke 15:4-7

What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost. I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance. “

I told the nanay that Christ was waiting for her and that he was just a hand away. I don’t know why, but the spirit in that lesson was probably the thickest that I have felt in a LONG time. If I wanted to, I could probably have cut it with a knife (which probably wouldn’t be a good idea. If denying the holy ghost is unforgivable, I don’t want to know what poking him with a knife is…). I don’t know, it is cool how the Lord answers your prayers in random ways that you would have never expected. A general authority once said that you are probably least likely to receive an answer to your prayers while you are kneeling in prayer. It comes when you are listening, when you are in the right place at the right time. It was the strongest assurance that the Lord loves us, and that Christ went through our agony, our pain, our sorrow for us so that we don’t have to. Awesome, this work is absolutely awesome.

Then, after we talked with the nanay, we asked about the two French chaps that we saw, and she told us that they went to the embassy, but that they would be back. So, later that night, we returned because Elder LeBlanc really wanted to speak French to them. So, we returned to find not the white guys, but their wives and their sisters-all of which are Pilipino, and all of which are fluent in French, English, and Tagalog. So, we all went down into their basement thing, and it was a clash of languages. French, Tagalog, and English. It was way cool to hear French even though I didn’t understand anything that they were saying (and they spit a lot, which was kind of gross). There was even this little girl there who only spoke English so we had a deep conversation about the doll house that her daddy bought her-she is going on my list of the top 10 cutest kids that I have seen in my life.

That is pretty much it, nothing really cool went on this week, it was a rather uneventful week. Our ward missionary asked me yesterday what the best explanation I could give about the endowment session was. I looked at the sister that was working with us and we started laughing. He was like why are you guys laughing and I was like the best explanation that I can give is this-its sacred. He turned to the sister and she was like…its sacred dude, sorry:/ He is SO excited to get endowed but still has 2 years to go haha.

General Conference is quickly approaching, but I have to wait an extra week to see it. It will go on this weekend, and then next weekend I get to watch it. SO, don’t tell me what went down in conference in your next email. That would NOT be cool.

As for the pants thing, yea, I got some made. I pick them up tomorrow, and as for the scriptures-I have to wait 2 months to get them back once I put them in. I am probably gonna finish the BOM again before I put them in to be covered. No, I didn’t feel the earthquake at all actually and I wouldn’t have known that there was one if you hadn’t have said anything. I haven’t heard anything from other people so we will see if it goes thru the grapevine and eventually reaches me.

That is crazy that the lady who moved into Trish’s house is a Pilipino. Ill be sure to talk to her when I get back. Do you know where about in Quezon she lives? If you see her again, tell her my last area was Lopez, quezon. That is way way cool.

So, my email this week is really really weak. Nothing cool happened, and so it is just life as the Lord dictates. I am stoked for conference though cause it is like a moral booster when you are havin a bad day. Please tell everyone that I say hi and I love you all!!!



Monday, March 22, 2010

Magandang Gabi Po Sa Inyong Lahat!! Ito Ang Aking Email!!!

Dear Pamilya-

This week has been one lacking in fancy stories, crazy catholic bishops, or possessed children, but I do have a story about patience that kind of smacked me in my non-shaven face (I forgot to shave this morning and I swear I saw Rambo hiding right under my right ear…) yesterday.

So, every Sunday we go on splits to cover twice the area that we could normally. Elder Duco takes a ward missionary with him, and I take a ward missionary with me and then we kind of split the remaining people up between us. So, yesterday we had everything set up and ready to go. Duco and I arrived at the church and met with our crew-ready to show our area what’s up. Elder Duco took one ward missionary and I took two others and this sister (who really needs to get married but won’t go to any SA activities…tsk tsk. Send her to BYU-that will take care of itJ) who wanted to grace us with her presence. So, things are going just peachy when we arrive at our first appointment. Her name is Rowena and last time we taught her she practically fell asleep (and I’m really loud and crazy when I teach so I know it wasn’t because of me). She just isn’t interested at all. She didn’t respond to any questions and just kept staring at her wall. Her wall wasn’t that interesting-I actually looked and studied it intensely. Wood and curtains. Nothing insane and heavenly popping out at her. So, we went back cause we decided that she deserves a chance to accept. So, we arrived at her house and I called out announcing our most definitely long awaited arrival and was shocked when there was no red carpet or roses. There was no answer. Now, any normal person, when they have something of importance try to see if people are home, which can sometimes seem a bit rude correct? Well, I had to do no such searching cause her shoulders were in the doorsill. She was watching a movie. I took a step closer and was like hey hows it going? Remember us? She was like uh…im leaving now sorry. So, I was like ok well that’s cool, when can we return. She was like IM LEAVING. Was she leaving? I think not. Such an idea is proposterous. She was chillin there on her couch (which wasn’t comfortable-I sat on it a week ago so it would have almost been a blessing in itself to get off it…) watching some ninja fighting, 15 year old kid’s fantasy, japanese movie. So, that kind of bugged me and threw me off my rocker for the rest of the day because of the blatent disrespect, but I have come to a realization that when people are rude to you it is just because they are unhappy with their lives so I pressed onwards. Then we came to our next appointment. The last time we went there there was like 10 people we taught and this time, only one of them was there, but there were atleast 12 others. So, I taught a lesson, the two kids and the sister testified, and we left. Nothing too bad so far right? It wasn’t bad until one of the ward missionaries suggested that we take this super secret short cut through this field to get back. I was like no what in the world, I barely have a clue as to where I am now, lets follow the yellow brick road back the way we came. He was like this is your area and you don’t know where you are? I was like listen child, I got here a week ago and we have gone to a different barangay (kind of like a city within a city) almost everyday. How about I send you to the heart of Salt Lake and don’t give you an address and ask you to find a single brick on a random building. Flippin Calamba, Cebuyao is like a little country. It is INSANE. I have no clue where in the world I am, I only know where the 7-11s and the Burger King is-what more do I need to know? So, we huffed it the 42 miles to our next appointment to find that she wasn’t there. Once again, that is nothing heartbreaking cause it happens everyday. I was kind of bummed though because I had 3 other people with me and they were expecting something cool. So, we left the community and headed for our next shin-dig:the law of chastity and the word of wisdom being taught to a woman named…are you ready for this…snookie. So, we trudged through the wilderness, long jumped the river jordan, and arrived at good ol snookie’s house. Unfortunately, the sister had to go home so I had no one more mature than a 17 year old to talk to for the rest of the day. This is where the real problems started. Snookie’s family are members (was that english right? It sounds ugly…are members…good thing I only have to use English on Mondays…its freakin HARD) and it is only her that isnt. The second we entered I could tell by the look on her face that she felt uncomfortable. How would you feel if 2 random filipinos, some woman, and a skyscraper 2 feet taller than you walked in your house? Elder Duco wasn’t with us when we went so she knew none of us. Before we entered into her humble abode I told the ward missionaries that they were gonna be teaching the word of wisdom cause it is a bit easier and they might feel awkward teaching the law of chastity. They agreed and told me that they were able to do such a feat. So, we started and I gave them the floor. BIGGEST MISTAKE OF MY LIFE. First off, they were looking for the word of wisdom in the book of mormon. Ooooooh, sorry champ, wrong book in the standard works. So, I gave them my d&c and opened up to it and they started teaching. They started with coffee and tea. They were like tea and coffee is forbidden for many reasons…*awkward silence in which I think I heard two pieces of dust collide in the air* she was like…uh…cool…and they were like they have chemicals…and she was like really? What chemicals? And they were like uh…the Lord commands us not to drink them so we shouldn’t…so, onto the next thing. Dang killer, you are knockin’ her dead with your explanations. Then he was like the next thing is sleep. The lord said not to go to bed later than 10 o clock and to wake up no later than 6 o clock in the morning. What in the world? The Lord said that…yea, and skittles are disgusting-LIES. The Lord said retire early so you can awake early and be refreshed. I was like uh…no sister he definitely didn’t say that. I went over the scripture in D&C and told her that it is beneficial for our health to go to bed earlier and to wake up earlier. So, what you are telling me, is the handbook that Thomas S. Monson approved for all missionaries regarding their time to go to bed and to wake up is wrong. Cool. So, I took the floor, fixed their mistakes and then taught the Law of Chastity. I wouldn’t have been frustrated with anyone else because it is a simple mistake and usually when we take people to work with us they kind of freeze cause they don’t know how to talk to people they don’t know and make conversation, but Matthew (the main ward missionary who is only 17) likes to tell missionaries how to do their job and such. So, I got a little frustrated with him cause he criticized me and then didn’t know how to teach a simple lesson. So, I left a little bit flurried, but decided losing the spirit wasn’t worth it so I dropped it on the ground and trudged forth towards our next appointment. Cheryl wasn’t there, so we hung out with her sister for like 15 minutes before going. During those 15 minutes I asked matthew what time it was implying to look at his phone. He was like elder, phones are not allowed for you. I was like dude, I just want to know the time, im not gonna text your girlfriend and ask her out on a date and he was like it is FORBIDDEN. This started, once again, some contention because I cant stand it when people who have no authority over me tell me what to do. Mom, it would be like taking marriage advice from a divorced counselor. After talking with her sister and relieving some stress we left and decided to go to the meeting place where we were to have our dinner appointment. Matthew decided to stop by his house before we went, so we went. This caused tons of problems. He had nick playing on his tv in his house and spongebob was playing on such a channel. So, I decided to let my eyes rest on the such a kids tv show (it was the episode of the strangler-ask brady, Samuel and ben, they will know what im talking aboutJ) and sat in his nice little bamboo chair for a bit, until he was ready to go. After we left, he started like yelling at me. I was like woah little kid, first off, you need to slow down cause your voice sounds like a weed wacker, and second off what in the world are you talking about. He was like elder it was against the rules for you to watch tv in my house. He was like chastising me for watching spongebob. I was like listen to me you small 3 foot 65 pound Filipino-I am a missionary and being such, I know what I can and can not do. I also know the consequences of my actions will always follow-whether they are good or bad. I know that if I go to a club downtown, I might have a little trouble feeling the spirit. I was like where in the world are you getting this and he was like it is in your white handbook and I was like im sorry, whose, he was like yours, whose, yours, whose, yours. Exactly. You still have 2 years til you become a missionary and have to follow the white handbook. In so being, you have NO CLUE what is inside of such a book. Does the seed tell the pine tree how to grow? I THINK NOT! My obedience and my agency is between me and the lord. You aren’t my mediator, and you most definitely aren’t my mom or my father cause they are both taller than you and have arm hair. It was really frustrating cause we kind of had a go at it and he wouldn’t accept the fact that 1)he has no authority, and 2)he is a priest and 3)he ISNT a missionary. Advice-something I like. I will take advice from anyone. Suggestions-more than welcome. Questions regarding if I can start or stop doing something-feel free to throw them at me. Commands-I take from those who have authority. Not some punky kid whose voice cracks more than an egg given to a 3 year old. It was SOOOOO frustrating, but patience is a virtue right? Ha, I learned a lot from that experience. No matter what happens, it is NOT worth getting mad over. When you are angry, you act like a fool. End of storyJ

In other news we have found a new apartment. It is SUPER NICE (we need to find another because of that shooting that went down in front of our current apartment) and only 5000 a month. We will drop such a thing on president tomorrow at zone interviews. I also get mail tomorrow WOOOOT!!! I am expecting a letter from geek bottom dumb himself-Mr. Jules Robert Miller with details to his upcoming wedding so hopefully I will have such a thing, if not, hey, I get mail on Friday again so I guess its just time!!!

All around me people are getting crazy trunky. Sister Clayton has 4 weeks left then she goes home to her RM boyfriend (I give her 2 weeks) and elder Duco gets outta here in 3 months. Kind of a sad thing to see them bounce, but a necessary step nonetheless. Elder Duco was talking to me after we left the internet shop earlier and he was chatting with his ex-girlfriend on facebook that he dated for 3 YEARS before his mission (he is 22) and apparently she wants to get married now and so he has become a wee bit more trunky. Other than that, life in Calamba is a bowl of cheerios everyday. I really really like it here. The people are cool, and the weather is hot. There are a lot of man-women (born men, but dress like women with make up and lip stick and all the other stuff that girls use…THEY ARENT PRETTY) all over the place which is just a little bit on the disturbing side, but other than that life moves onwards.

Brady is gonna try out for Roy Jr? Dang. I told that little punk that I was gonna dominate him when I got back at basketball…what happens if he is better than me? How am I gonna live that one down? Oh, and what happens if he gets taller than me? He already makes Chelsea look like Jimminy Cricket, and im sure is about to show mom up in height. Tell that boy to ease off the puberty gas pedal.

It sounds like you had a nice birthday. It always sucks when you have a…sucky birthday so I am glad that yours went by as smoothly as the fabric of Mr. Rogers’ sweaters. I wish I could send you something, but sending packages aren’t the cheapest things in the world. I will send my love though. Ill take you out to dinner for your 42nd birthday how does that sound ha? Man, we have TONS of birthdays approaching. April 1st, 4th, May 1st, 30th, June 2nd, July 14th, 15th man, they are much in abound. My birthday present to 3 of those birthdays will be a phone call here in a couple weeks!!!

Teaching wise, this week was plain and simple. No angelic visitations, no golden plates found, nothing cool like that. Sunday was an AWESOME day for me though. We had a couple investigators come to church which really really made me happy. Every sacrament, before it starts (priesthood is first, then gospel essentials, then sacrament) I go around and make sure to shake everyone’s hand and it made me smile bigger than big bird to see them there. Man, let me tell you, sharing the gospel with your friends and seeing them in sacrament meeting is one of the coolest feelings that I have ever had in my life.

I do actually still get asked my height quite often. I also get something else here. As you read earlier in me making fun of the people here, Most Filipinos have no arm hair. They do have some leg hair, but their arms are bare like a baby’s bottom (which I unfortunately see all the time cause no one believes in pants in the Philippines). People will come up to me and rub my arm for like 20 seconds and I am like uhhhhhh….hey….hows it goin…and they are like your hair is…its GOLDEN. They cant get over the fact that my arm hair isn’t black and that I have so much of it. It makes me chuckle every now and then cause sometimes little kids come and rub it cause they are curious and they become mesmorized and ill wait for like 10 seconds then be like AAARRRRGH and they are like AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH and run away haha fun times. The Philippines rock my socks.

That is cool beans that Mike is flying out to meet you all. Did you ever find out about the whole church situation? How are Leah and Sarah going with that deal? Speaking of which, can you get leah’s email for me? Im gonna start emailing her cause writing letters is SUCH A HASSLE trust me-I write them CONSTANTLY.

Does Tory have a job to fall back onto, or, move forward to rather? Man mom, I hope you are ready for such a thing. It seems to me like that is an intense thing to reckon with.

I was read something interesting in the scriptures the other day. In the book of Luke, in the 18th chapter, we read

And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:

Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.

I think humility is something bomb dig to have. I realize that I might have put on my Pharisee outfit with the whole Matthew situation, for which I hope I can learn from. I have found out that sometimes as members, we put ourselves above others. Whether it be through our actions, words, or thoughts, sometimes we consider ourselves higher because we have the gospel in our lives, and others don’t. I used to do it with those who don’t have the same standards as me, until I realized that we are all 10000000% equal to the Lord no matter WHAT we do. For this I am grateful. How much better would the world be if we all cleaned the inner vessel of all contentious, back-biting, or harmful comments? Experiences like those that I had with Matthew make me once again realize that I am not perfect, and increase my gratitude for the sacrifice of my older brother making it possible for me to once again become clean through his infinite sacrifice. You know the Taglog word for gospel? Pure Domination!

And that is the way the caribou flies. I am way stoked to get to talk with you all on mothers day (ill end up calling your phone using skype) Remember-the gospel freakin dominates. Random question-have you done the temple work for Oma and Opa…or the 14828114 other relatives that have died? You better believe I am stealing all the undone work when I get back (except the women. That one might be a little hard to do by myself. Ha, mom, looks like me and you are gonna rock 15 sessions a week when I get backJ). I read something that made me laugh today, its kind of random, but funny nonetheless. It is a family at a table, and the boy turns to the mother and says “mom, in new testament times, were leftovers called Passovers?” Ha I laughed hard on that one and it made me realize…im such a mormon:/ AND PROUD I MUST SAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Keep rocking life and being amazing. I do have a question though. It has been literally bugging me for a little bit now. You know me and how my mind goes off on RANDOM useless tangents that have no worth…but…if you had a bowl of alphabets, and a bowl of spaghetti-os, which would have more words spelled out? I think the alphabets would, but that is just me. Food for thought.

The Lord loves us allJ



Aka Elder Muller

PS-clock hands overlap 22 times in a day. Cool huh? One of the more important things that I have learned on my mission…

Monday, March 15, 2010

New Area

Dear Family-

So, the time has arrived. Someone is hitting the big 40 mark. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!! Haha man mom, when did that happen? I remember when dad turned 40 and we were like what in the world, that’s like half as old as the earth itself. Holy cow. And I am turning 20 what in the world? Man, time flies. Happy birthday mom! I hope it is amazing!!!

So I have been transferred from the land of nothing and am now in possibly the coolest place I have ever been in my life!!! But first, a few stories about right before I left.

Elder Francisco and I got a little better in our friendship the final week of the transfer, and then it completely bottomed out. Any other time he HATES working and the time that I needed to wash my gs and pack and stuff he got mad because he wanted to work. Man, that kid is weird. No matter what I did, I was in the wrong. Jeez, I hope that is definitely NOT the way it is having a spouse (cause in all honesty, being a missionary is like being married to your companion) cause if it is I am proposing to my xbox 360 when I get home:/ Anyways, the last night that I was there I went around and said my goodbyes and…it was probably one of the hardest things that I have ever had to do in my life. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t best friends with the area. There, as in every area, are people who rejected us, yelled at us, and swore at us, but it was the members and our investigators that we fell in love with and it was difficult saying goodbye. One of our nanays, nanay ramos, was probably the hardest. She was practically family out here and we have shared amazing memories. Man, it was way bad leaving my first area…how much harder is it gonna be leaving the mission? Ha I never want to go through that again-im just gonna adopt a Filipino kid and live in a hut in the boonies so I don’t have to say goodbye…goodbyes SUCK:/ Anyhow, such is life. I said bye to the members that I baptized, and to the people who became my family down in lopez and, with my head held high, looked forward to change. It was also really hard saying goodbye to elder Bernard. We both became really really good friends and he helped me a lot and became like another brother to me, but, once again, tis ok. At transfer day I got to see elder Hansen which was awesome ha. We talked and talked (me talking a lot? Poppycock…) about our old areas, our old companions (he got emergency transferred off the island because his companion had a homosexual pornography problem…not AWKWARD at ALL…) and our current areas. It was way fun. He was telling me about this place called Puerta Gallera (which is probably the most forbidden place to go in the whole mission cause it is one of the top tourist attractions in the world which means its American…and immorality central) which he decided to go visit haha so that was cool and so transfer day ended with me heading to my new area with my new companion.

Now, let me just say this, I think that Lord heard my prayers asking to get the heck out of outer darkness and back into an actually civilized area. First, my comp. His name is Elder Duco and he is literally the He is AWESOME. He is Filipino but for some reason the language barrier is almost completely eroded away. I learned how to speak Tagalog in Lopez which, apparently, has like the deepest Tagalog in the mission so when I got to my new area its like speaking with an American-its so simple like im talkin cooking ramen noodles simple. The cool thing is that his first area was Lopez 4th!!! We were up till the crack of dawn talking about all the members and lopez in general and all the tight stuff that goes down way out there in nowhere. He only has 3 transfers left so he is a little bit on the trunky side…and I mean like going out and buying rap cds at the marketplace and blasting them in our apartment trunky ha:/ But he is awesome. Our apartment is awesome too. It is two levels and SO much bigger than my apartment in lopez. It is in a set of 5 townhouses (I guess that makes it a townhouse:/) which are vibrant pink so atleast we get to represent ha. It is really really nice though. There is this big like iron gate that you have to unlock just to get into the courtyard so I feel like a star with my exclusive pad hidden from the world. All I need now is a limo and a head bigger than a hot air balloonJ We are looking for a new apartment though cause like last week or something these random guys came and shot our neighbor-you know, everyday social interaction-so president has kind of told us to get the Zarahemla out of there…

So, onto my area. Hmm, how to describe how to describe…how about this-AMAZING!! You have to keep in mind that I am coming from Lopez-where the biggest hospital is 5 rooms separated by curtains. Lopez zone is the farthest you can travel in the mission without using a boat. It is a 5 hour bus ride from the mission home…and civilization. My new area? Yea…it has a flippin burger king (one of 2 in the whole mission ill have you know!) I was walking the other day when I looked up and saw this enormous billboard advertising for Burger King and I was like WHAT IN THE WORLD WHAT THE HECK IS THIS? Yea, there are 7-11s on every corner and there are even stop lights!!! They have cars here which is way cool. The traffic is INSANE. There are no rules and so its everyone for themselves. Man, the other day I went to this area of ours (our area is miles and miles wide of city domination. They used to have FOUR COMPANIONSHIPS running it…yep, only us two haha:/) that is probably the literal definition of a city hid upon a hill. It is above this cemetery and there are random pathways going all over the place. Peoples houses are in the basements of other peoples houses. Half the time you, to get to the heart of the community, you need to go through peoples houses and stuff. It is so stinking COOL!! Anyways, I went to the top to teach these recent converts and I looked out and saw manila (it looks like NYC) and had a wack flashback. There is one main highway that is lit up by streetlights galore and then the surrounding city which has different color streetlights-it looks like Utah. Not to mention there is this enormous inactive volcano towering over the city. That thing has to be 5000 feet high, it is ENORMOUS. Today we went with the zone to sm (I have a mall in my zone nowJJ) and on the way we crossed over the interstate. It reminded me of Utah SO stinking much. It has two 4 lane sides filled with cars going to manila. Man, cool cool cool. My area is called Cebuyao and I have already fallen in love with it…and bought skittles multiple times at 7-11 WOOOOOT!!!!! We had to go to the sisters area the other day for an interview (elder Duco is the district leader) and I got a cool surprise. Half of their area is resorts. People rent out these vacation homes with pools and cool stuff in them for the weekend and stay here, then return back to where they are from. Cool beans!!!!!

Ha, about the debit card, I definitely had a wack experience today. We were at the mall (like I said earlier) and I wanted to go withdraw money. Elder Duco was in the arcade rocking some shooter game so I decided to go on splits with this socially AWKWARD elder (possibly the biggest mistake in my life) and go find an atm. Well, all we could find was mastercard atms so we went to information and talked to the lady there which was IMPOSSIBLE. She couldn’t get over the fact that there are no wells fargos in the Philippines and she was like we don’t have those here and I was like oh I know, I just need an atm that is able to work with visa and she was like yea but we don’t have wells fargo here. I KNOW THAT I just want to get a visa atm machine. Then she suggested that I go into the bank of china and work it out with them. What in the world you crazy I just want a stinking atm machine. Tsk tsk tsk… Anyways, I went to the atm machine (after NOT taking the crazy information lady’s advice) and put in my card and went through the process and got to the point when it was like you will be charged a 150 peso fee and I was like yes yes YES…and then it told me my pin was wrong. I was like what the MUD you piece of garbage you WILL accept my wrong pin number and you WILL give me my money. Yea, kind of forgot that I still didn’t know my pin but maraming salamat po for giving it to me!! I need a watch (did I tell you how it broke? It involves impatience and toe nail clippers like for real...hmm another day I suppose:/) and I want to get some more pants made along with some more ties.

I have a question real quick-have you all seen the new alice in wonderland? Man it looks way cool. I want to see it SO bad. Ha I have the advantage here because movies are pirated for the movie theaters out here and they play for a month or so and then are put on dvd. So, ill probably buy the dvd in a month and then ask president if I can watch it seeing as how it is a Disney movie, but not in that order. Speaking of movies, if he hasn’t already seen it, tell B-rady that I saw avatar (on the dvd…) and it was WEIRD and it isn’t the cartoon if he couldn’t already tell. If you see it, tell me if it is any good.

hat is awesome about the DON position!!! Are you sure you want to take it? Isnt it an extremely stressful job? Man. Keep me updated on such a thing.

I have a quick question though before I close. Can you do me a favor and look up the recipe for Pan de Coco? Go to and make a batch. It is the best food in the Philippines. I always ask people if they have it and they laugh and so I ask why they laugh and they are like ha because all Americans go BESERK over Pan de coco. It is bread with coconut filling inside. It tastes like the inside of an almond joy, but inside bread. It is AMAZING. Make a batch. It is way cheap. It is up there with steak (but still below obviously:/) on the list of favorite food. That and sopas which is the best soup I have ever tasted, but that is a different story cause you need native vegetables for that one. Ha ill make it when I get back. Yea, another thing Americans go beserk over:D

Anyways, that is all she wrote. Man, with the whole grandma and grandpa situation going down I really wish I was home, but its ok cause im where im supposed to be. I love you all and hope you are all doing well. I wish you mom once again a dominatory birthday. Go to golden corralJ



Pss-tell dad to flippin email me back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A Trunky Week.

I am so so ready to get a new area and a new companion. How was Hawaii? Man that is so cool. Was the water way cool? Was it hot? Today we had a zone activity and we went to this beach and chilled for most of the day. It was way way good to just relax because we work 7 days a week and our p day is scrambling to get things done for the upcoming week. In our zone we have 4 (3 elders and 1 sister) being transferred so we wanted to have one last get together so we went, played some volleyball and badminton and had a blast. It is way way good to be able to chill again haha.

That is AWESOME about Jules and Melanie. I cant believe that that kid is getting married ha. I remember walking home from TJ one day and we were over the bridge over rt. 15 and I was like “dude, I wonder what our wives are gonna look like” and he was like “I don’t know” haha man o man. I cant believe that that kid is getting married. I wish I could throw him a fat congratulations because getting married is a HUGE milestone. I wonder when and where it is gonna happen. Cool beans huh?

The time with Elder San Francisco has been dragging along slower than dad on the interstate (love ya dad). Elder Francisco, like I have said many times, doesn’t like to work. He just wants to go chill with members and stuff. The other day he wanted to wait for some sisters to come work with us because we scheduled with them last Sunday and they were at the church for a meeting and no one had any clue when they were gonna be back or anything and he wanted to wait there. We were already late for our first appointment and it was gonna take like another 20 minutes because the girl that we were teaching lived on the boundary of Lopez, Quezon and outer darkness so it was still gonna take a little bit to get there. Elder San Francisco and I definitely aren’t the best of friends that’s for sure but we get the job done. As for pictures and stuff like that, obviously my camera is still broken but I have made friends in high places and have gotten an extra 80 pictures from people so I have a ton to send back. I will send it here in a bit, probably after transfer day. I am getting lazier and lazier with my writing. At first it was way fun, and now it is like…oh…I still need to write 7 other missionaries, 3 other sisters, 4 friends in the states, my family, 2 teachers, and in my journal. Yea, not the funnest thing I have ever done ha but I and nagtitiis hangang wakes (enduring to the end) so hopefully I will get around to responding in this next bit:/

As for the Polynesian cultural girl story, Elder Perry says that there are a lot of Filipino people that go to BYUH. I see adds here for it all the time and apparently the entrance requirements aren’t too hard but it is one of the schools that accepts Filipino education.

I hate to give you all a weak sauce letter, but it is like 5:20 and I need to go. This next week is gonna go by SOOOOO SLOWWWWWWLYYYYY. Please remember to put pictures on the memory cards that you are sending back. I will send my memory card out in the mail here in a little bit. Love you all, and I hope you all keep dominating. I AM STOKED FOR FRIDAY WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOT. Plus I get mail:D

Man, I have less then 18 months left. That is weird to say. I remember when it was week 1 in the MTC. I have become really really good friends with a guy who also went to USU (he lived in this place called Merrill hall which was like 2 minutes away from me haha) and so haha we have this plan of stuff to do when I get back haha. He is a transfer ahead of me so he will get home 6 weeks before me. I know another elder in the mission who went to USU too, and there is a sister who lives in Logan. That makes, including the kids in the MTC, 6 of us that are gonna rock Logan when we get back. Hopefully Bernard (that guy who lived in Merrill hall) will have a room available for me in the spring so when I go back to USU I wont have to hop into the cutthroat market of looking for an apartment:/

I love you all and hope you are all doing well.



Aka Elder Muller

Ps-sorry again for the WEAK sauce email

Pss-Why in the WORLD is Brady FIVE SEVEN? He is only flipping 13. If that kid becomes taller than me…oh man. I will be eating my words for the next 12 years…

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Aloha from Waikiki Beach

Dear Family-
This week was insane. There are tons of stories that I am gonna tell you so ill start right away.

Everything started wednesday. Wednesdays are our district meetings and so we hop on a bus at 9 to make it to gumaca by 10. Well, elder Etcitty had stayed the night before because last tuesday was zone conference (where we went to the mall and stood outside of the movie theater and watched the previews for all the upcoming movies...trunky nation...). So, as I said in my last email, elder Lee was emergency transferred and Richens was put in. Richens is a guy whose father has paid for everything he has. He has no respect for anyone and puts himself above everyone else cause he is rolling in cash. He always has to one up everyone and he will not accept the fact that someone is better than him. Well, Elder Etcitty was born with a birth defect on his face. It is like 3 inches high, 2 inches wide, and like an inch and a half deep. Richens made an EXTREMELY rude comment about him being fat and his birthmark and Etcitty smacked him across the face and started swearing and stuff. Then Richens came over and was insulting him even more by saying grow up and stuff so Etcitty threatened him and they were about to fight and all this drama garbage. I felt like I was in 11th grade like for real. It was retarded.

So, everyone is in a wierd mood because the f word was dropped in a missionary apartment along with other choice words so we rode to Gumaca in silence. WELL, on the bus I sat down next to this guy. He seemed nice to me, and was way quiet. Well, I started day dreaming and I was rubbing what I thought was my bookbag. I wasnt paying attention so I was doing it for like 5 minutes. When I finally got out of my daydream, I looked down and saw that it most definitely was NOT my bookbag that I was doing wierd circles with my fingers was the guy next to me's leg. I was like OH FREAK..uh...sorry, I didnt notice your...leg...there... and he just looked at me. I dont know what was more creepy-the fact that I was rubbing a dude's leg like a pet for 5 minutes...or the fact that he didnt stop me. COOL. I was told I would have experiences that I would never forget on my mission...oh how right they were.

So, life goes on...until Saturday. We live right above an OB/GYN. It is this maternity clinic that is downstairs. Well, Francisco and I had opened our fridge to defrost it cause the freezer had TONS of ice in it. We thought that the little catch tray would get all the water-WRONG. Saturday we went to this quadruple baptism of these cool teenagers and the zone leaders got a text saying that there was water leaking from the ceiling onto the people below. Yea-we had so much ice it like flooded our kitchen floor (which is just wood) and the water seeped through the floor and was pulling a niagra falls on all the pregnant ladies below. Ha, sad, but kind of funny at the same time.

I also had a funny incident with elder Francisco. Since we became companions, he has been improving my Tagalog, and I am helping him with his english. He will give me a sentence to translate, and I will tell it to him, while I will ask him if my Tagalog is right or not and he will correct me. Well, the other day we were tracting and he was apparently getting sick of teaching the first lesson. So, he, as he has done many times before, told me something and I was to correct him if it was wrong. He tried to say "I am tired of the first lesson" but only said "im retarded..." and then he was like wait a minute, thats not retarded and he was trying to figure out how to say it. It was a funny thing to happen because it allowed us to laugh at it and have something to laugh at for the rest of the day.

I also had this cool experience last night. I must admit, I have fallen into the cliched mindset that those who are inactive have completely bailed on the church and are lost in the woods without a light. Last night, Elder Francisco and I visited this 19 year old inactive and I thought it was just gonna be another cookie cutter inactive visit-"you are welcome to come to church" "ill think about it" and they dont come. We started teaching her and we asked why we hadnt seen her at church and she said it was because she has to work 6 months at a time to support herself and her family but that the church hasnt dropped in value since she was baptized. She then bore one of the most powerful testimonies that I have ever heard. It just made me think about how awesome the women in our church are and how I got a reality check as to how much I want my wife to be just as involved with the church as I am. Good times.

Ha that is way funny about your experiences in Hawaii. Did you get manly flower power leis when you got off the plane haha? Just think of it this way-how memorable would a vacation be if there was no missed planes, tsunamis, food poisoning, or lost luggage? Ha exactly:) By the way, about coming to pick me up, I was talking to some elders about it, and both you and dad need to come. I wont be released from being a missionary until I am back in the states so Dad would be my new companion. That would be awesome if you guys came. Spending money wise, 200-250 dollars a person (10,000-12,500 pesos) would most definitely cover it. We would rock all my areas, and I would share the amazing culture with you all. But, of course, the plane tickets arent the cheapest so that is something you all would have to look into. We could stay a week or so and rock all the places I want to go (like Puerto Gallera-this AMAZING tourist spot like white sand beaches, baby blue water, the works) and such. They have some of the worlds most beautiful beaches here so we could go visit that, plus the volcano, and the temple. But, its up to you cause thats a couple g's out of your pocket so whatever you guys want!

Right now, I am studying D&C HARDCORE. There is so much in each stinking section its flippin bomb dig haha! I am also studying the pearl of great price and comparing the different elements within each chapter to the symbolism found in the temple. I am SO STOKED to be able to dominate the temple again. The temple is probably the 2 most missed thing by me only superseded by you all. The pearl of great price definitely has some stuff that you wont want to miss ha so pick one up and get to work! Ha no, just kidding. Elder Francisco and I are...still living. There is definitely less than love in our companionship. He wants to chill at members houses and I want to work. He wants to go buy tons of stuff and I want to teach lessons. I will say this-I am so excited for transfer day. Elder Francisco and I seem to be 2 positively charged magnets that just repel. There have been some heated battles to the death because he doesnt want to work, and I do. But, only like 11 days left WOOOOOOT!!!

I was thinking about the whole 6 months thing earlier. Man, 1/4 of my mission gone. I have had some AMAZING times already and it is only 25 percent done. From losing my wallet to getting ingrown toenails to stroking a guys leg-a mission rocks my socks. This past 4 months in the Philippines has BLOWN by. I am kind of bummed that in 18 months I have to come back to 10 dollar haircuts, work, and no Tagalog, but its ok.

How is everything at the house going? How are Samuel and Ben doing? How is Brady doing? Hmm...turning 14 eh? You better tell B-Rady that I said he better be staying away from girls. Haha he will probably blush. He still hasnt emailed me back that lazy bum haha:) Tell him to get off my Serta downstairs, turn off the xbox, and come email me before I dominate him ha! I hope you are all doing well and I hope you are all staying safe. There is something that I learned the other day-

"Ang palay ay parisan, habang nagkakalaman ay lalong nagpugpugay"


Imitate the rice stalk, the more grains it bears, the lower it bows

I think it is funny about how people are finding out how important humility is. Random, but cool!

May 9, or Mother's day is quickly approaching!!!!!

Keep on keepin' on!!!

aka Elder Muller