Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Week #51 - “Hope on. Journey on."

July 20, 2015
Hey Mom and Dad! So I transferred out of Passi this last week after being there for 4 transfers! It was really hard to leave - I felt kind of like I did when we left Sterling a few years back. It was like leaving home. It was a weird feeling. I was so surprised how close I've grown to the people here in such a relatively short time. We said goodbye to our investigators the Panes family and they didn't want me to go haha they said I was part of their family. They are such nice people. I will miss them lots. The members in Passi treated us to a nice fish/chicken/pork dinner the night before transfers and it was a little hard to say goodbye to them.

Thursday morning we headed to the bus Terminal and the other Elders all headed to the transfer meeting, and I rode by myself up to Roxas City. I was excited to find out that Elder Seeds, one of my batch mates, is one of my housemates now! We've had lots of laughs and we'll get to celebrate our 1 year mark together. My new companion who came from transfer meeting later in the day is Elder Alpon who is from Bacolod. He's way nice. He doesn't speak much English which is going to really help me get better at the language. There are 2 Americans in our house and two Elders from Bacolod so we speak a lot of Ilonggo which is fun.

My new area is called Panay and it is a very difficult area from what I have heard and seen. It is very far away from our house and there is only a small group of members and lots of the members are less active or inactive, so we have our work cut out for us. Yesterday we went to church twice. Once in Roxas and then in Panay later in the afternoon so we could get to know the members. My companion and I are white-washing the area, meaning that we are both new to the area. I really like Roxas City so far. Roxas is called the seafood city of the Philippines because it is so close to the ocean. So I'm going to enjoy getting lots of fresh seafood while I'm here! Our house is really cool. Its a nice apartment. It overlooks a really noisy street which is a downside but other than that it is a very nice building. The water pressure is really nice and there aren't too many houses I've been in with good water pressure. Plus I'm no longer sleeping on the floor anymore!! BONUS! I have an actual bed now to put my mattress on so that is way nice.

Even though I've only been to my area 2 times so far I really like it as well. Like I said, we will be doing a lot of "Less Active" work in our area. We're going to need a lot of  fasting and praying that we will be able to help reactivate more members in the area because they are thinking about closing it down and just having the members go to church in Roxas--which would not be good since it is a long ways away.  The members just want to keep their meetinghouse in Panay, so we have lots of work to do to get people coming back to church.

Right now there is a Navy Hospital Ship "Mercy" docked in Roxas and they are spending a couple of weeks here doing surgeries and all kinds of medical help for the people. Some of the ship's crew are LDS and they came to church and spoke yesterday. It was so awesome to meet and talk to so many Americans!
Here's the answer to your questions this week Mom:

#1 - What made you laugh this week? All of the ELders in our house are funny guys and we all have really different personalities, so it gets pretty funny. LOL There was also a snake that Elder Seeds and I caught at the church and this little boy was crying on the inside of the church when Elder Seeds picked it up haha us two white boys were surprisingly the only ones that would attempt to catch it.
Elder Rasmussen & Elder Seeds and the Great Snake Adventure

Looks like a python to me....eeek!
#2 - Have you eaten anything new/different in your new area? I ate squid the other night and it was pretty good. 
#3 - Do the members there get to go to the temple very often? I think I read that they will ride a ship to go to the temple in Cebu? Lots of people go once or twice a year. They go in groups and it usually ends up being about a 4 day trip. 
#4 - What's the landscape like in your new area? Its flat but we are pretty close to the ocean. Roxas is a big city though and that's where we live but our area of Panay is on the outside of the city in a more rural area.
I finally figured out the picture Dad! You moved the chicken coop! haha I'm going to really miss being home on the 24th, that's one of my favorite times of year. I guess my "Utah Pride" has really skyrocketed since I've been here. Have fun our your motorcycle trip and be careful. You and Mom don't be racing those motorcycles! LOL Sure wish I could be there to go with you, but I'm loving my mission regardless!
Have a fun week!
Love Elder Rasmussen

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