Monday, July 15, 2013

July 15, 2013

Here are the addresses to send a letter.  I was trying to fix the address and deleted it.  so until I can figure out how to put it back  I will post it at the top of the letters.

Standard Mail:                                                  
Sister Stephanie Anne Hellewell                        
Philippines San Pablo Mission                          
Brgy San Juan, Alaminos                                  
4001 Laguna

Through the Pouch System: Single sheet letter on white paper. NOT LINED. folded in thirds and taped at top.  No envelope.
Stephanie Anne Hellewell
Philippines San Pablo Mission
POB 30150
Salt Lake City UT 84130-0150

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEND A LETTER THROUGH THEY WILL DELIVER IT TO THE SALT LAKE OFFICE EVERY MONDAY MORNING. You do not need to pay postage!!!!! Just click on "pouch letter" then Philippines San Pablo mission, then type in Stephanies name and type your letter.

July 15, 2013
Thank you to all my friends who have been in contact with me. Caiti-I got your letter, and I am sending one back to Hurricane it came at the perfect time that I needed it thank you for being such a good friend to me. You are actually the first friend to write me! Hannah Byers and Nichelle Zuniga I got your emails, and I read them.  If I get time today I will email back, they ,made me so happy. Sorry I don't have very much time, but I really do appreciate them. To all my siblings I got your letters and thank you everyone for the advice and comfort. It has sure been quite a week! Congrats JJ for getting your eagle all done in only two weeks. Now all you have to do is learn to be productive even when Samuel is around! 

It sure has been a crazy week. Me and sister Basa locked ourselves out of the apartment this morning. I went to go grab my shoes that were hanging up to dry and forgot the key on the table. She thought I had the key and shut the door... bam! Locked out! We had to jump over the fence in our skirts cause we didn't have the key to unlock the gate. This is hindi mabuti. Because sister basa is sick and we didn't plan on staying out longer than to email but now we will just have to find things to do until the other sister's return from zone p-day. We are going to go to SM and hopefully there we can find some food that I can eat. I have to eat oatmeal for breakfast. gross. So to get into a story about chicken feet I will start by talking about some investigators. There is a boy we are teaching here in Tayabas, I will call EJ, cause we are not supposed to use names, but there are so many legados I want to talk about I will just use initials. EJ is in fourth grade and living with his aunt and uncle who are members. We spend a lot of time over in their area because they live right next to two inactive families. One of which we get the brother and sister to go tracting with us to find inactive members houses. It works quite nicely to get the inactive members to go tracting with you. We had a great lesson with EJ on the Plan of Salvation. We asked him to say the prayer and he started crying because he felt the spirit so strongly. It was so precious. After the lesson M legado offered us bread and pineapple juice. I re-explained why I can’t eat bread and so he decided I will just have to eat chicken feet instead! It is funny how people seem to need to rhyme what I am going to eat.
My MTC district told me to come to the Philippines and eat rice, mice and lice. M legado says if you can't eat wheat you must eat feet! I told him I would try it but I don't promise to finish. He said I will but I don't think I will. I told him hindi ko alam (I don't know) and left it at that. He kept pushing it and I said I might be allergic to chicken soon too if he's gonna feed me feet all the time! We are going to his house for FHE one week from today, so I guess you'll have to wait two weeks to see how I feel about eating chicken feet. He also plans to feed me bulot, fetal duck. Yuck! I usually just don't ask what I am eating.

Since my companion is sick I made my first adobo yesterday! I really only knew the ingredients she puts in it, well I guess I guessed the right ones. And apparently I guessed the right amounts too because it was quite delicious and the three sisters who ate it were impressed. I guess I’m a natural, I love adobo. and even if I am convinced that the meat here is going to kill me after going to the open meat market. I can survive off of adobo, as long as I don't think about where I got the meat from. 

Another thing, everyone looks at me everywhere I go. I'm pretty sure the little adorable Filipino kids only know one phrase in English "what's your name" they are quite surprised when I answer them in tagalog and ask what their name is or something like that (I may not speak tagalog very well but that is one thing I can do!) it is annoying sometimes when they follow us down the road screaming at me, but it's alright. There are two little girls Kim and Monica that live near the legados. They spent the first week I was here peering at me over the corner and breaking out into fits of giggles all the time. One day I ran into them head-on in the alleyway and decided to talk to them. They are adorable little friends of mine now.
We also had a successful FHE with a different Legado family that is related to the ones I just talked about. We had to reschedule our FHE to Thursday night I believe it was and it was so fun! I have no idea what Sister Basa taught in the lesson or what ma lagado taught either, but the spirit was present and I understood that. The entire family was there as well as another family that lives close by that are also inactive. The legados have come to church two times in a row now after rarely coming so this makes me very happy. For our activity I taught them how to play “down by the banks of the hanky pankys,” and they loved it! Sister Basa taught us the number game. We would just count to ten, and you just speak up to say the number, if you say the same number as someone else you get to put powder on each other’s noses! It was so fun and I hope I have time to send the picture to you. I loved it. Mom, you would love playing this game at a party.

There is a lot I wish I could include in this letter but I must pick and choose. I have really been struggling. the mission is so hard, I feel like no one understands me (because they don't and I’ve had people just ask me to teach them in English cause they don't understand what I am saying) most of the time I just want to go home. I really do, but I know I truly don't. So I stay, plus I don't know how to get home anyways let alone to the mission home. I have been reading the Book of Mormon specifically to learn about faith and I was reading 1 Nephi 17:51. And in it Nephi is talking to his family.

“And now if the Lord has such great power, and has wrought so many miracles among the children of men, how is it that he cannot instruct me, that I should build a ship?”

If the lord can do all those things, all those miracles, and even teach Nephi how to build a boat from nothing... well than I’m sure he can teach me how to teach a simple lesson, four simple lessons plus some, to people in understandable tagalog. I know that this will take time, I wish I could learn faster, but the lord will help me as I start teaching in faith. I have decided I need to focus on learning the doctrine not necessarily  all the language, I need to teach it. I need to know the doctrine really well first. I feel extra pressure because there is a high possibility that my batch of missionaries will be training in just 10 weeks and that really really scares me. Lots of tears have been shed but talking to Sister Carmichael the sister training leader who lives with us, she’s from Utah, and it really helps to talk with her. I am out of time. To my family: I have written you a letter that you should expect in the mail in a couple of weeks. I didn't include a lot of what was on there in here. So be expecting that. Thank you for all of your support and I am sorry I don't have time to respond to all of you but I really love your emails and letters.  They really do help me. I love you! 

Sister Hellewell

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