Sunday, June 30, 2013

June 23-30

This is our 2nd week in the Philippines. In ways it seem like we've been here forever. In other ways it seems like we just got here. Elder Gorringe fits right in with the crazy Philippine drivers. Like one member said, " You fill in the blanks." That means if there is room to pass 1- 4 cars by going into the oncoming lane then you do that. You're weaving in and out of traffic all the time. One reason you can do that is because jeepneys ( a WW2 jeep made to hold 10 to 12 people) and the trikes ( a motorcycle with a side car which holds 4+ people) , are so slow and that's the main public transportation.
     We went to 1 district meeting and 2 zone leadership meetings. These young missionaries are incredible. They are filled with the spirit and teach incredible lessons followed by a demonstration of what they were teaching, then the missionaries practice what was taught.
     The Standard of Excellence for the Olongapo Philippines mission is 2 baptisms per companionship per month and 2 less actives coming back to church 4 times in a row. The 2 zones we sat in on reached their goals. Olongapo Mission is # 1 for reaching the Standards of Excellence out of 17  missions. President Querido knows how to help the spirit work with these missionaries. There were over 70 baptisms yesterday. We didn't go to any because we stayed in the office for training. We'll get our chance.
     A typhoon passed close to the Philippines causing high winds and rain. Church was cancelled.


Elder and Sister Gorringe

Sunday, June 23, 2013

We've been in the Philippines 1 week now. What an adventure. We arrived in Manilla Saturday night, June 15, after a 20 1/2 hour flight with stop overs. We we' re picked up at 7:30 from the very nice Microtel, and went to church on one floor of of a business building. It was run like a regular ward with the Stake President visiting. They accordioned the chaple off for classrooms. Their last meeting wet over 15+ minutes. Elder. G. got many Happy Father's Day greetings from the ward members and a cup of goodies. They celebrate many of the U.S. holidays. The church is in good hands in that ward.
     Monday morning we were again picked up about 7: 30, and we were taken to church headquarters across from the temple. At first were going to get our driver's licenses, then we weren't, then we were. While they were trying to decide, we went to a devotional for the church employees. We met Elder and Sister Dupaix from our stake in Sandy. They're serving a public relations mission.
     With wet wipes in hand and tissues, we headed to get our driver's license. They require a urinalysis, which is not very sanitary,thus the wet wipes, an eye test, 3 pictures, and about 2 hours of time. It's scary to drive in the Philippines, especially in Manilla.
     We met Elder and Sister Murray across from the temple. We are their replacement.  The drive to the Olongapo mission was about 3 hours. We saw caribau, not cariboo, sort of an ox the farmers use for plowing their fields, rice fields, lush green scenery, the military base, a naval ship, and the ocean.
    We thought we would be staying in an apartment above the mission office, but that  apartment is going to be used for new missionaries  and missionaries coming for an over night stay for meetings.
     Our apartment wasn't ready until after 9:00 that night. There were 27 new missionaries, the most they've ever had. We were asked to bear our testimonies about 3 times. We listened to the testimonies of all the new missionaries. What an impressive group. It was a spirit experience to be with them. Sister Querido fed this army of missionaries. There we're the new missionaries and their
trainers. President Querido told them he prayed about which new missionary should go with which trainer. He knew it was the Lord's will who they got. President Querido is impressive.
     Elder Gorringe, Elder Murray, the APs, and President took everyone home in the pouring rain. Elder Gorringe came back drenched,clear through to his Filipino pesos.
     Our apartment is very nice according to Philippine standards. It has a living room/kitchen and bathroom on the main floor. The kitchen has a small propane gas range, and a small stove. We have a water filter on our sink, but no hot water. UThey gave us a sort of an electric coffee pot for heating water.
     I'm out of time. We don't have internet so I have to write this at our office.

ELDER and Sister Gorringet

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Hi everyone,
     We've been at the MTC 3days now. We are among 101 senior missionaries who arrived this week. It's one of the largest groups ever. 944 young missionaries came today, including Frankie Xyedeth from the ward. We haven't seen her yet.
     The first day was mainly orientation. We have 2 cute return missionaries  teaching us Preach My Gospel. Today we met with an "investigator" and were able to commit him to read and pray about the Book of Mormon. Tomorrow we will do a follow up visit with a different "investigator". We'll see what happens.
     Last night was a devotional in which Tadd R. Callister, of the presidency of the 70 and his wife spoke. There were 2200 in that auditorium and another 1000 someplace else. WOW !!! The excitement, enthusiasm, and power in that room was incredible. Singing " Called to Serve" with this immense group of people dedicated to the Lord was an amazing experience.
      We are staying at the Marriott because the isn't enough room at the MTC. We're not complaining. We have our car here this week. Next week we won't have a car, so we'll go back over to the MTC.
     We'll be home this weekend, and go back Sunday night for the devotional. We'll say our goodbyes Sunday and leave from the MTC to the airport Friday the 14th at 11? am.
     We love you all.

     The church is true.

Mop and Pop, Grandmop and Grandpop, and Gary and Margene