To start this off, about 5 minutes ago I was just informed that Tatay Ernesto, back in Toboso, has died. He was referred to me and to Elder Noprada by his sister. We began teaching him and about two weeks into it he decided that he didn't want the church. After inviting him one last time to pray we returned to him two days later. He said that he did receive an answer and would like us to continue to teach him. I baptized him on December 5, 2015. He was the first and only person so far who I personally found and taught every lesson to. I saw the change that took place in his life as he came unto Christ and now he is resting in the paradise! I love Tatay Ernesto; we were good friends.
I know that this is a time of sadness for me but I feel even more at peace than I do sadness. Tatay Ernesto had slight dementia and lived a rough life but now he is freed from the constraint of a disabled body and is resting until the resurrection.
I am so glad to have hope! To know that there is life after death and it is far more glorious than life here on Earth. I am so grateful for the Gospel and atonement of Jesus Christ that through Him we can be with those we love for time and all eternity instead of fading into oblivion once dead. I know that I will see Tatay Ernesto again in the next life. I hope to see all those I love there as well.
About last week or so we were walking to a member’s house and a guy we FTEd called us over. After speaking with him this other guy came over to us. I had talked with this second guy only once before as he pulled over his motor cab and told us how he has read the Book of Mormon. He now has a PMG and is trying to learn Cebuano through comparing the English to the Cebuano, and also has some of the language books that we as missionaries have for learning Cebuano. He is an American living here in Argao. We spoke with him and our other friend and then returned to them last Sunday. All I can say is that he is probably one of the best Christians I've ever met. All he talks about is Christ and how Christ has helped him. He is very amazed at the Book of Mormon. He is what I call a Mormon who hasn't been baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. We both agree on the gospel subjects too. And the best part is that I get to speak English! No more language barrier (even though I could still do it in Cebuano). It was another miracle that we were able to meet. I learned a lot from him on just what I need to be doing better towards Christianity.
A lot of people argue about doctrines such as "What is the true name of the Father?" or "What is the true rest day?" or "We have the Bible and that is all we need for our salvation. Not direction from God for our lives right now." or "There is no other 'testament' of Jesus Christ". My new friend pointed this out to me that a lot of people argue about doctrines and could go on for hours about what the books say and NOT ONCE mention the Savior, our redeemer si Jesus Christ.
A few weeks ago the President of Cebu Mission reinforced to us all to "...always have the Lords name on our lips." It is so true. Sometimes we get caught up in the "Prophet, prophet, we have a prophet" - LDS and "Bible, Bible, we have a Bible"- everyone else, that we forget to include who really matters, the Lord of us all! I made it my goal to tie everything I say in with our Lord Jesus Christ. Always have His name on my lips. Testify to everyone that Jesus Christ has once again reached out to us in an attempt to rescue us from eternal damnation. He has done this through the calling of a new prophet and speaks to us now, even today, through a true and living prophet. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the one and true church of Jesus Christ here on the earth and it is my job, as a representative of Jesus Christ, to always be inviting others to come unto Him!
We had a zone conference last Thursday. It was fantastic there and had tons of great insights!
I went on splits with the companion of my district leader. Good stuff, good stuff.
Today, after emails we will be going to this Mama Mary castle and FTW the nuns! JK - can’t do that. But we will tour this really old church.
In closing I want to make a quick shout out to my friend Allen!