Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Week 30 HYMN 214...peace on earth, good will to men...

Week 30

Holy cow this song is a new found favorite of mine, and we sang it in the Makati 4th ward choir for Christmas (yes I was in the choir, yes I was the best one) (and yes I am totally joking---but that left corner in the back was looking real nice) (thats where I stood in the choir) 

Dear Fam and Friends and Santa,

Hello everyone :) and a very merry maligayang pasko :) Hope Christmas was a time for people to think about Christ's birth, spend time with the fam, and EAT a lot of food. I know I did all of those things, its not Christmas without it.  Just starting out--it was a very merry Christmas to skype with my dear family. Ahhh, it seriously is the happiest moment to finally see the faces behind all the emails. I did think about Christ a lot--I think missions do that to you, you just get the opportunity to really zero in on the importance of the birth and atonement of Jesus Christ. And of course we ate a lot of food--its not Christmas if you don't eat yourself sick haha! So you could say it was a Christmas to remember. 

So a little about my week :) 

This week me and Sister Guiuo tried to center our messages around charity because we feel like their is no better way to get in that Christmas Spirit.  So on Christmas day we had double Christmas programs with both of our wards. And what I really loved is just being surrounded by our ward family and we are lucky enough to have double the family haha. Both wards ended with the song 'Silent Night' and i just felt the love and importance of the birth of Jesus Christ...so it was a special moment for me. Then afterward we bought 100 pesos worth of candy to give candy out to kids and we did our best to be the Santas' of the Philippines and then afterward we took Kelly and Jerry to hang out and share a message at our Ward Mission Leader's house.  It was a great Christmas day---one that will not be forgotten!! 

The rest of the week was really good too. Sister Guiuo had her VISA interview this week. So I got a little field trip to go there with her. It included us staying in a fun hotel and I got to have a warm shower.  So that was a fun part about our week foooor sure. We had our mission Christmas Party with all of the missions on the mainland and it was the funniest thing ever. We got to watch my new favorite movie the Fourth Wise Man and Santa came, and we sang some songs, watched an awesome nativity scene.  Life was good for that.

Our fun hotel room for the VISA interview trip!
VISA trip!
VISA trip!
Missionaries going for VISA interviews.  Sister Guiuo going to SLC.
Some going to Arkansas, some to San Francisco.
My companion for the day while everyone was
at VISA interviews haha!!!
Our view from the Embassy
We actually had some fun opportunities to visit a lot of families and to bring our investigators to their house to do some fellowshipping which is the HAPPIEST thing ever.  We got to go visit some members with the new family we are teaching...Antonio and his kids. We watched the Restoration Video with him which was super fun. And the Restoration Video is so great--it changes lives for sure. 

And the rest of our investigators are doing good, we had a lot of peeps come to church and that was super fun. I really think that Christmas on a Sunday is the best for missionaries, we guilt trip our investigators to come. haha jokes. But in all seriousness, our investigators really felt the love and feeling of charity from our messages this week and from going to church. Specifically someone who came was Sister Beth. We have been teaching Sister Beth and her daughter Faith and they told us this week about how they feel like we are REALLY teaching them about how they can better follow the example of Christ which was super cool. 

Sister Ruby who always works with us
We got to go to a fancy restaurant with a family!

Sister Beth and Faith in their home!
And just to end I have felt both sides of the spirit of Christmas this week. The giving and being on the receiving end. We had members give us food, surprise us with pizza, and I just got so many wonderful, encouraging words from members from both wards.  And it just made me feel like what I am doing, the little things I am trying to improve about their ward are helping them in someway. And being a missionary I have really felt the love and joy that comes from being a servant on the Lord's errand. Charity, and the pure love of Christ is just sinking in deeper and deeper. I am so grateful to be a missionary in such a special time of the year. 

Well everyone I am grateful for your love, emails, and especially grateful for my cute fam at home. Thank you again! 

Sister Zarbock 

Mission Christmas Party!
Christmas Party
Sister Singer at at the ChristmasParty!!
We stayed up till midnight Christmas Eve so we
could open our presents on Christmas! We're rebels!

Sister Beth and her family at church on Christmas!
We had 8 investigators at church!
Church on Christmas!!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Week 29 A week to remember :)

Week 29

Dear Family and Friends, 

Well this week was one to remember--really feel extra blessed for being on a mission this week. Christmas season is the funnest time to be a missionary my goodness especially in the Philippines :) People are happy, random people sing and dance in streets, and we have a blast caroling to random people so they let us in their house haha.  But anyway, this week was a good one and I can't wait to tell ya all about it. 

So me and Sister Guiuo were having a normal day like any other and we were pretty excited to be going to a Christmas Choir Concert on Saturday. And we are walking up to the chapel on Saturday when a Sister from Makati 4th comes up to me and says she has a surprise for me. And Then I just see some really blonde hair and I couldn't believe IT WAS THE ONE AND ONLY RHEA WALTERS. Dropped my bag and we hugged/cried for maybe 15 minutes haha.  But seriously it was a happiest surprise to see her, and know she's a real person!  Don't worry she's alive and well!

Meeting up with Sister Walters--my dear friend from home serving in the
Philippines Baguio Mission.  She made an 8-hour bus ride to Manila to take
 her companion to the doctor.  We ended up at the same Christmas concert!
Christmas concert!
Selfie with our buds at the Christmas Concert
Sister Guiuo, Sister Singer, Kelly--our investigator, me at the Christmas concert
It's kinda just fun to be a missionary with one of your besties too because on Sunday Rhea and I had an awesome lesson with a new investigator--Rhea and I got to be companions for a second and teach Roger from Ghana in Makati 4th ward :) One day Roger and his sister just showed up to church last week and then came this week too so I had a little side conversation with him before our class about how he should be baptized and he said he had heard a lot of weird things about mormons but now that he's been to church he wants to get baptized. Cool, well that was pretty easy.  And he is awesome, his sister has rock solid faith, he is golden. So everyone pray for Roger from Africa!

Me and Rhea at church!

Just one more--for good measure!
Earlier in the week I went on exchanges with Sister Barton and that was so fun to spend a day with her.  She's been in Palawan for the last 9 months so she's just getting used to the big city haha.  But it was fun to be with her for the day. 

We had an awesome lesson with Kelly at the Ostler's house (my mission President) and it was just a nice spiritual-filled lesson about the purpose of Jesus Christ in our lives.  And you know with Kelly you have to teach very simply and clearly but that lesson just helped me realize how simple Jesus Christ life is and how much we need to try to be like Him while we are on the earth right now.  And Kelly is doing awesome, slowly but surely she is just getting that desire to know and change through the gospel. And you can't get a better spirit than when you are at the Ostler's home! 

To finish off I have an update on Antonio (guy from last week) HE CAME TO CHURCH :) So happy day with that. We were just sitting in sacrament meeting and as soon as I saw him and his daughter I couldn't even hide my smile because I was so shocked/happy/grateful they came to church! 

You know a couple of times this week we were talking to our investigators about their families with it being pasko and everything. And a lot of people said they have a broken family, or they aren't married, or their husband died--I don't know just a lot more times this week than normal I heard family problems after family problems with each one of our investigators. And it made me really grateful for the family I have and the knowledge of eternal families through temples. And especially grateful for the love of my ward family--thanks for all your sweet emails.  

Anyway, I hope everyone has a great Christmas!!!  Hope its an extra memorable one :) 

Sister Zarbock 

Our investigator Angelie's adorable twin girls!!!

Monday, December 12, 2016

Week 28 Hostesses All Week Round 2 :)

Week 28

Dear Lahat ng Tao, 

Hello everybody! :) Hope everyone is having an awesome week so far! this week was so FULL.  Sister Guiuo and I are pretty exhausted with all the people coming and staying at our house and everything but it has been a fun, memorable weekend. We have decided we would make an AWESOME married couple because we had a pretty fun time having everyone over....it included buying 4 boxes of pancakes haha :) BUT we had fun because our family was completed with Sister Holzworth's visit on Tuesday!!!! She slept over at our house because of the STL training and IT WAS SO GOOD TO SEE HER :) So Sister Guiuo has now met her Lola in the mission. It was great. Anyway on to the week! 
So good to see my trainer Sister Holzworth again!
Our complete family--Nanay (mom, me), Anak (Sister Guiuo, daughter)
Lola (Sister Holzworth, grandma) :)
Like I said we had a lot of people come over to the house from Palawan because we had our Mission Tour/Zone Conference this week. It was so fun! All of the missionaries in our Zone were there. It was so fun to meet everyone. I loved it. :) Elder Haynie was the special visitor and I went up to shake his hand and he just patted me on the head and was like I see you every week so just pretend this is extra special for you ;) It was kinda funny. Elder Haynie is such a funny guy. I loved this mission tour, it was all central to finding and to really getting involved in the lives of our investigators and finding. It was super nice, uplifting experience. Much needed :) There is just something special about being surrounded my a bunch of missionaries--I really feel such a special spirit. But that was super awesome this week! 

Sisters at the Mission Tour!  Including Sister Singer!
More Sisters from the Mission Tour!

The only three U.S. Sisters in the entire mission :)
Me, Sister Barton, Sister Singer--we're all from Utah, too!
A little update on all our investigators. Kelly is doing great--she came to church, loves our messages and continues to tell us how much peace she feels in reading the Book of Mormon. My favorite thing to hear :) Beth is doing awesome--she really is opening up with her desire to be baptized. We taught her after the mission tour so we were spiritually edified so it was an awesome lesson with her about the purpose of baptism and everything. Cezar came to church this week and made a lot of friends at the Christmas party on Saturday. 

Which brings me to my next point. We have 2 wards so we had double Christmas parties on Saturday, it was great.  We had a lot of our investigators come. And Filipinos have crazy parties haha. If they know how to do one thing, its throw a great party. We had fun hanging with all the members and introducing our investigators to all the members too. Great experience. Love the people in this area! Its going to be a bitter sweet moment when I leave this area.  But I think I learned this week that missionary work is a lot of just caring for and loving people. A lot of people just need some friends that will help and listen to them--and I think our investigators felt that at the parties hopefully. 

Our investigator Angelie and her new baby!
She came to the ward Christmas Party!!
We actually had a way cool thing happen this week with the Antonio Family. We were walking in our area about 2 weeks ago heading to one of our appointments when this guy with a cigarette in one hand and a beer bottle in the other came up to us. And I just thought Ohhh boy, this can't end good. But he approached us, dropped his cigarette and started to talk to us. And he said that the missionaries used to teach him in his province and he had been waiting for us....we were like ummm...is this guy serious? So he took us to his little bahay down this tiny street and there were his 4 kids. And we have been teaching them--and they had a couple of Book of Mormons in their apartment they brought from their province. We taught them and he has read about 50 pages in the Book of Mormon because he was "waiting for us to show up." Lesson learned? Don't judge people, and God sends us to prepared people. 

So this week was a good one all around :) I am just grateful to be surrounded, led to people that need the gospel. We had a way awesome lesson in Relief Society the other day and I've had this poem on my mind that was read. The message for me is that God gives us our little places to tend to, whether it be a mother in her home, a missionary in their respective area...no matter what stage of life you are in God gives us opportunities to serve others :) and it never goes unnoticed. 

Father, where shall I work today?And my love flowed warm and free.Then He pointed out a tiny spotAnd said, “Tend that for me.”I answered quickly, “Oh no; not that!Why, no one would ever see,No matter how well my work was done;Not that little place for me.”And the word He spoke, it was not stern;He answered me tenderly:“Ah, little one, search that heart of thine.Art thou working for them or for me?Nazareth was a little place,And so was Galilee.”

Love everyone, have a good week! :) Love this season so much! 

Sister Zarbock 

Cute Sister Baldelomar!
We taught Young Women on Sunday!

Monday, December 5, 2016

Week 27 Malagayang Pasco :)

Week 27

Dear Fam and Frenz, 

Hello errybody :) Its officially Christmas Season! WE MADE IT. Christmas songs are going on in all the stores, we saw Christmas lights this week, and this week marked 6 months for me out in the field. WHOOP. Can't believe its been that long, so weird. Anyway, this week was a good one. I was a little stir crazy last week so it was so great to be out and working this week again. Felt really nice to be out of the house and all that fun stuff. :) We had a really good week this week of teaching and all that good stuff. Just the regular mission life, just grateful to be right where I am :) All in all, I think the best weeks on the mission are the weeks where you teach a lot and meet a lot of interesting/weird/out of no where kind of people haha. And thats the kind of week we had. 

So a little update on some peeps. Kelly is alive and well--she is the Chinese investigator. Super fun to teach her like always and she is just cruising through the Book of Mormon. And I asked what made her want to read it the other day...Haha and she says she can actually understand it so its no problem :) So at least she understands one thing, and it happens to be the most important thing.  Go Kelly, she also came to church on Sunday. And I nudged Jerry to go sit by her and he did...so master mind plan to get them together is slowly in motion. Jokes.  

Beth is doing good. We have been teaching her and her cute daughter Faith for the past couple of weeks. She has a lot of questions on Temples, the plan of salvation--which is my favorite thing to talk about with investigators.  So that was fun this week. And she really opened up with us and that is always a good sign that these people trust us.  So good vibes from Beth. And we had an awesome moment like that with Trisha Kate too this week, she has been separated from her mom since she was little and kinda has a difficult family situation and she just opened up to us about that. I feel like she is kinda like my little sister I never had...we hugged it out so alls good over here. 

Angelie came back from Lagoon-a and so we visited her, its so fun to visit her cute family.  So happy to see her. We talked about the commandments and the Law of Chastity, Word of Wisdom--honestly I think it will be a while before she is baptized but her faith and desire has really been strengthened since I first started visiting her so we aren't given up.  I think what I have really learned is to just trust in God's timing, almost always things never happen according to how you want it, so we just got to take a backseat and let that desire work itself in her. 

Cezar came to church this week so that was fun too. But honestly I think my favorite/most spiritual lesson was with Mildred.  Oh I love that lady. She is a Less Active and is house help for a family in our area, and this week she said she just missed her family--she doesn't go home that often. And of course, we of all people understand that feeling. But we were singing Silent Night with her to start the lesson...And, it was just the most comforting, loving spirit in the room. And the song ended, and she said "ganda ang pakiramdam ko." She just felt that peace, the spirit is called the "Comforter" for a reason. 

So overall mood of the week? Comforted. Just a happy camper right where I am at. Being a missionary is crazy, stressful at times--but all in all NO effort is wasted if you are sharing the gospel. 

Have a good one this week errbody! 

Mahal ko kayo! 
Sister Zarbock

Dinner and Christmas lights with the Keys family!

My far away from home traditional "Gingerbread Party"!
Not quite the same as real gingerbread--but it works.  Thanks Jules!
Matching Mission shirts!

Still obsessed with puppies! There are some exotic 
looking ones in Makati!