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Sister Abish Curtis

November 2012- May 2014

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

First Week in the Philippine​s


Shout out to my sister Solana who just got her mission call!!!!! To the Adriatic South Mission! Albanian speaking, reporting to the MTC April 10th! That is pretty much the coolest thing I've ever heard (besides getting called to the Philippines that is) Love you Solana, I'm so excited for you!!!

 

I don't even know where to start...

I am really here in the Philippines!!

I'm serving in the Conception Ward, in the Tarlac zone.

 

My kasama is Sister Calinisan from here in the Philippines. She claims she is not good in English, but she actually is really good. I've had no problem talking to her in English... only Tagalog :) She is short (she barley comes up to my shoulder) but she is funny and we find lots to laugh about. She is a hard worker and I love it.

 

So what have I done so far since I've been here? I walked through rice fields and corn fields. I ridden on trikes, jeepnies and a bus. I've spoken during Sacrament meeting, I've sung during Sacrament meeting. And most importantly, I've taught people about Jesus Christ.

 

Here in the Philippines missionaries have a little bit of a different focus. We focus a lot on strengthening people who are already members of the church. We don't just want more people on the ward rosters, we want more people in the chapels. A lot of our visits are to recent converts and less actives. But we also teach investigators. There is a boy named Allen that we are teaching that is going to be baptized on Feb. 16th. It is exciting!!

 

Most of the people here in the Philippines live in poverty by American standards. But it is the most beautiful poverty I have ever seen. They live in plywood houses, or concrete houses, or bamboo houses. They are small and simple. They effectively use all the space they have. Sometimes when we visit them we have a chair or something to sit on, but a lot of times we just sit on their floor.

 

We teach several times a day and we begin each lesson with a song, I love it. My companion had me actively participating in lessons right away. It's been hard, but I've already improved so much. Heavenly Father is truly blessing me.

We have a goal to OYM (Open Your Mouth, and share about the gospel) so many times a day. I OYM more animals (dogs, chickens, water buffaloes, goats, etc.) than humans, but it's good practice. :)

 

I kinda feel like a celebrity here. Because I am a foreigner (tall and white), people are constantly staring at me. I'm not really sure how to handle it. I just smile. Little kids are my favorite. One day as we were walking, my companion told me that the two girls behind us were arguing whether I was a foreigner or if I had just used a lot of whiting soap. They have that here. It's opposite from America, because here it is considered more attractive to be pale and white.

 

So the address that I had for sending letters to me was wrong. The mission home has moved so below is the new address. If you've already sent something to the old address it will still get to me I think, it will just take longer. Use this one instead:

 

Philippines Angeles Mission

F. Tanedo Street

Tarlac, Tarlac 2300

Philippines

 

Sorry that this letter is so scattered and random. There is just so much to write about and I didn't even get to half of it. This is an experience like none other I've ever had in my life. It's hard. There have been moments when I just want to give up. When I wonder what in the world I'm doing here. But then I remember that I have been called by a prophet of God to serve the people here in the Philippines. I remember that God has promised to help me, and I know that I can do this with his help. I have received so many tender mercies that help me get through the day. I love being here in the Philippines. I love the gospel. I love being a missionary. I won't trade this experience for anything. I know God lives and loves me. I know this is God's work. I know He given no commandment, except he prepares a way for us to accomplish it.

 

Thank you for your love and your prayers. I love you all!

 

Sister "Foreigner" Curtis

 

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