Monday, July 27, 2015

Week #52 - "Onward, Ever Onward!" “

July 27, 2015
Michael's release date is July 26, 2016, so we are officially on the down hill side! 1 year left to go!
 

Hi Mom and Dad!
This week we did a lot of really cool stuff, so I have lots to tell you about.
Me & Elder Alpon
Monday after I emailed you we went bowling for P-day. The bowling alley was pretty cool. The pin machine is a Filipino kid and he throws the ball back down the isle. haha It was fun!

On Tuesday we were able to go aboard the Navy Hospital ship the USNS Mercy and do a tour. It was coolest activity I have done on my mission so far. I was a little worried President Aquino wouldn't let us go since it wasn't P-Day but sure enough the ones that were invited to go on the boat were also invited by President to eat lunch at a very nice restaurant with him! There was a ton of really good food and even shakes at the end I felt like I was in heaven :)
Lunch with President & Sister Aquino

The Famous "Milkshake"
 Then we went to the port and got on a small boat that took us out about a mile or two to the ship. It was so cool to see it while in action ha there were about 900 people on board. All of the Filipino Elders and President looked wide eyed and commented on all the big, huge people as we walked through the ship. It was funny. The Chaplain who is LDS took us on a tour. We went through all the surgery rooms and basically most of what you would see in a normal hospital. The feeling was like being in America again and you know that when there is a drinking fountain that is 100% safe to drink from! HAHA President Aquino really liked that haha. We even got to eat in the cafeteria and even though it was cafeteria food it was USA cafeteria food and that was awesome! I really had a great time and it was so cool to see all that the U.S. is doing to help others on this planet. The U.S. does so much good humanitarian service for people. My pride in my Country about shot through the roof!






So that basically took the entire day to do so when we got home we just showered and went to bed. It was a really cool experience!

My companion and I have been working hard with a guy named Tomas who is awesome and is helping us by showing us where all of the less active members of Panay live [unfortunately, there's a ton of them]. I've learned a lot with the language because they speak it the whole time so its been nice to be away from the English so I can learn more. Even Elder Seeds and I speak a lot of Ilonggo to each other most of the time.

One of the areas we visit you have to cross a big river twice. The first time we took a construction boat and then the second time it was a little bamboo boat that is way low so a little sketchy going across and I didn't quite make it getting off and stepped right into the water haha so I walked around the rest of the night with a soaking wet shoe. Crossing the river is way exciting though :)




Church services in Panay start at 1:30 which is a bummer because they won't let us go to church in Roxas in the morning so we just stay home and try to study until it's time to leave for Panay. That's a long time to try and keep studying, but we've got our work cut out for us there, so we are working hard to come up with ideas to help them.
Chapel in Panay
 The meeting house is very humble and very hot and sweaty. It *really* makes the whole church experience a whole lot more enjoyable (NOT) haha :) The members are very unprepared and the two times we have gone to church now they basically have a meeting about what to do with the group since it has been closed down many times and they are at risk of being closed down again. It's a little weird but I sure hope that we will be able to help them so they can build an actual chapel. It will take a ton of work and I'm not really sure where to start, which really stresses me out, but we will try our best to help them. Like I said, we need lots of fasting and prayer--so send some prayers our way for the little group in Panay.

I did get the package you sent. Thanks! Elder Seeds and I are going to celebrate our year mark on the 6th. We celebrated yesterday a little since that will be our go home date next year on July 26. We were both a little trunky yesterday but we're doing good now :) 

Thanks so much for always thinking of me! Have a great week! Glad you made it safely home from your motorcycle trip. I can't wait til I can go with you :)
 
Love Elder Rasmussen



















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