Saturday, June 21, 2014

Ohana!

Ohana! Hahaha it is wonderful p-day again. And it sounds like you guys are pretty dang busy! There are so many homecomings! Holy cow. That is so cool to see. I'm glad they're all finishing right. And that's cool Aleigha is doing EFY this year, is this your first time dude? I never went haha I was always like "I have cooler things to do with my money" hahaha ;) So that's cool that you're going! And flying is not too bad, though I can tell you the 24 hours of flying here was not too fun, and dad can definitely testify of that. The coolest thing I remember in flying to Utah is at one point you can look down and see straight down into the Grand Canyon. Super cool. 

So just a little experience I had like half an hour ago. A simple little thing, but it's given me stronger faith. We got done playing soccer about 2 hours ago and then rode a jeepney about an hour here to Guimba, and so we went and got burgers from this little stand, and they were super cheap so I ordered 4 (this was not just me being fat, I just felt I needed to). So I ate two (they're tiny okay?) and I was like "why the heck did I order four??" and my comp was like "I need to print pictures". So we go up to this photo printing place, and there's this dirty, down-syndrome, homeless guy, and I'm just like "ahh frick what a poor guy" and enter the printing place, and then I get this feeling, that like forces my head to look down at my hand, holding the burgers. And I knew what I had to do, so I went outside, talked to the guy a bit and he just looked at me and muttered "tulong, tulong" or "help, help" in English. So I hand him the burgers and enter the photo place again. A few minutes later we walk out and this guy just looks so grateful, it was so cool. And then I look up and notice all these people nodding their heads in approval at me. Then I got shy and walked away really fast hahaha. It was a cool experience. 

So yesterday and Saturday, we had district conference. It was a broadcast from Salt Lake, and Pres. Teh conducted with Bishop Davies, Sis. McConkie, and Elder Quentin L. Cook there, and they all spoke and they had such good talks. One thing I really liked was a story Bishop Davies shared, perhaps you guys may have heard this in another conference or something, but it's the story of the Philadelphia temple. Bishop Davies was part of the committee to build the temple, so they went and found several properties that could be suited for the temple, but two stood out in particular. They got approval from the council of the twelve and first presidency to make an offer. The first choice they had was surprisingly, accepted readily by the owner. This man said he had owned the property some 25 years, and had many opportunities to develop it, but never did because he always felt the land had a "higher purpose". So they had the land ready, but then the city council intervened; they wanted the land to help the people, provide jobs, blah blah blah, basically just anti-Mormon prejudice. So they took the land from the Church. Bishop Davies then, in a last-ditch effort, scheduled a meeting with the mayor of Philly. In attendance was the mayor, a few non-member city councilmen, and Bishop Davies, the temple's architect, and two members of the local community, one being a Tongan who played for BYU's football team and in the NFL, and retired and is now a sports broadcaster in Philadelphia, I forget his name, but suffice it to say, he has prominence in Philly. So they're in this council with the mayor, and he obviously has his mind set. So they're trying to persuade him, then this famous Tongan member says "Mayor, may I speak?" And the mayor says of course, yes. And this member then bore testimony of how his family had sold their home, he and his siblings had sold fruit, to be able to travel to the Hamilton New Zealand temple to be sealed. Then he testified the city needs this temple, the people will be blessed by this temple. And sat down. Bishop Davies said it was silent for a few moments, then the temple architect got up and showed some sketches of the temple. After that, this is the really cool part. A non-member city councilman stood up and said the city needs this temple. That it will bring peace and beauty to their city, and bless the people there. Then the mayor's heart was softened, and the Church was allowed to continue work on the Temple. At the end of the meeting, the mayor asked Bishop Davies to say a closing prayer. How cool is that?? Ah it was the coolest story. And all the other talks were sooo good. They all really focused on the Filipino saints, they did so well. 

Well, as for that, that is currently my life. I am doing very well, I was sick the start of last week, but it's all but gone now. The work slowed down a bit last week, because of a funeral and district conference and other little things, but we are definitely seeing the fruits. One of our investigators attended distr. conf. with us yesterday and had really positive things to say about it, which was awesome. It was also a sacrifice for her because the jeepney ride is expensive and over an hour to get to the district center. And we've only taught her twice. Awesome!! 

Dad what's up with your foot? Mom says you're really hurtin. How long's it been like that? Are you gonna be able to do havasupai still?? ;) Haha hope it starts getting better! 

Caitlin can't wait 6 months to get sealed???? ARGGHHH tell her to wait!! That's so cool you guys went to the temple, I can't wait to get to go again. I get like this craving every now and then to go, buttttt....soon :) 

And how is Maile?? That's cool you're doing horesback stuff! And how's the guitar and piano? Getting good? ;) Write me dude! 

Aleigha, I just got your email so I'll respond to that :) Your art is so amazing dude! 

Well, I still have reports to do, but I will have you all know I put a priority on this letter today :) I mean, it's always a priority, but today I wrote this before doing ANYTHING else :) So I love you all, I hope you guys are healthy and safe, and enjoying break :) Well I guess Maile is really the only one, everyone else sounds super busy lol ;) Love you all! 

-Elder Rand

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