Weekly email 5.26.2014: Kasama natin ang Diyos!

Hey Fam,

The week went good. In some sort of a way it feels like were finally on a pretty good pace in our work trying to get over each of these trials. Were making progress anyway. We have a couple of baptisms lining up. They are actually younger kids though. The one is a twelve year old girl in a huge less active family. But were lucky because they live just down the road from bishop so even though the family doesnt come to church we have the bishops wife pick up our investigator. So she will get interviewed this Saturday and then the week after that BAPTISM. We have other people committed but they arent pulling through with their part.

Its ineresting because the last few months we have really been encouraged by the are presidency of the Philippines through our mission president that we need to single adults. Interestingly enough most converts of the church are between the ages of 18-30. So we have been tracting boarding houses around the colleges here in Batangas. There are actually a few large colleges here. Almost all of them are open to know what message we have. We met two girls and talked to them but werent able to share with them right away but low a behold they showed up to church yesterday and they arent even officially investigators yet. We also taught a lesson at an apartment yesterday with a seventh day adventist, a catholic, and a born again. I actually enjoy teaching people around my age because in a way we kind of have the same perspective.

The more and more I keep learning on my mission I cant help but think its to bad I didnt know this a year ago when I still had so much time. But that just keeps making it more important that I become a “Finisher” as President Monson put it.

Love,
ELder Polatis

This bald baby is actually a girl but has really this hair so they keep shaving it in order to thicken it up. Poor little girl.

This bald baby is actually a girl but has really this hair so they keep shaving it in order to thicken it up. Poor little girl.

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Weekly email 5.12.2014: Manggagantso!

Dear Family,

Well our teaching pool didnt have a whole lot of changes this last week we are just focusing on the same people and same commitments. Orginally we were supposed to have Stake Conference this last week and then they changed it to June so we had to change some plans with our investigators. But it worked out for the best because the stake center is almost an hour away in Lipa. Most investigators arent so willing to give us half of there sunday afternoon. Its still the same story I feel like were trying to drag people to church. Its really nice though because I know once we get the investigators there the ward will really accept them and they will enjoy the experience.

Last night we had a Family Home Evening with a less active family and the oldest daughter just got married to a non member so he joined us and we hope to see him at church soon. The Family Home Evening was really big a lot of the members came so it was more like 3 families. The members here are great we just show up on there doorstep and they sit us down and feed us plus we have a dinner calender. The only thing is they are also a very busy ward so we dont get them to work with us a whole lot. For example our ward mission leader is the marketing counselor for a university here and he along with his 3 brothers just set up a restaurant selling burger (very good american style burger). So with all of that we have a tough time coordinating with him.

On the 27th of May Elder Craig Christensen is going to visit our mission so we get to go to San Pablo on that day. I guess he is the president of one of the quorum of the seventies so were getting into the big shots. Actually note of interest in 2012 a month before I came here to the mission Elder David A. Bednar came to San Pablo mission and spoke and I barely missed him sayang. I started to realize how much it means to have living authorities so close to us though. I have taught a lot of people that really open up there eyes when you simply say “The twelve apostles are alive” and after all of that we live only two hours away from where they regularly meet. I know were in some good hands in this church and that it makes all the difference to have a church that is so alive with living prophets and apostles.

Love,
Elder Polatis

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Weekly email 5.19.2014: Manggagantso!

Dear Family,

Well our teaching pool didnt have a whole lot of changes this last week we are just focusing on the same people and same commitments. Orginally we were supposed to have Stake Conference this last week and then they changed it to June so we had to change some plans with our investigators. But it worked out for the best because the stake center is almost an hour away in Lipa. Most investigators arent so willing to give us half of there sunday afternoon. Its still the same story I feel like were trying to drag people to church. Its really nice though because I know once we get the investigators there the ward will really accept them and they will enjoy the experience.

Last night we had a Family Home Evening with a less active family and the oldest daughter just got married to a non member so he joined us and we hope to see him at church soon. The Family Home Evening was really big a lot of the members came so it was more like 3 families. The members here are great we just show up on there doorstep and they sit us down and feed us plus we have a dinner calender. The only thing is they are also a very busy ward so we dont get them to work with us a whole lot. For example our ward mission leader is the marketing counselor for a university here and he along with his 3 brothers just set up a restaurant selling burger (very good american style burger). So with all of that we have a tough time coordinating with him.

On the 27th of May Elder Craig Christensen is going to visit our mission so we get to go to San Pablo on that day. I guess he is the president of one of the quorum of the seventies so were getting into the big shots. Actually note of interest in 2012 a month before I came here to the mission Elder David A. Bednar came to San Pablo mission and spoke and I barely missed him sayang. I started to realize how much it means to have living authorities so close to us though. I have taught a lot of people that really open up there eyes when you simply say “The twelve apostles are alive” and after all of that we live only two hours away from where they regularly meet. I know were in some good hands in this church and that it makes all the difference to have a church that is so alive with living prophets and apostles.

Love,
Elder Polatis

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Weekly letter 5.12.2014: Kulang Kulangin

Dear Fam,

I hope those pictures due you in for the next week since this email will be somewhat short. I figure the more pictures the shorter my email can be just kidding. I enjoy relaying my weekly progress to you. I guess you could say its the principle of accountablility.

So we have really found working with members succuessful here in Batangas they are doing great and gave us a few referrals this past week. Plus they are feeding us all the time they are super nice here. The sister you saw earlier in the skype fed us lunch earlier. The ineresting thing here is that we have found two less active members here while tracting both of which were priesthood holders with non member wifes and kids and willing to let us share with them. Thats where most of our success has come from so far. As a not of interest. We have a really good Elders Quorum president here. He has only been a member for 3 years and he works with us all the time and is always looking for priesthood to reactivate. But thats not the interesting part. He was a complete gay before he was baptized. When you say gay in the Philippines its not just tight jeans I mean all out gay in every way. But he has really made a change in his life. Hes still really femmy like but I think its really cool that he changed and is so active in the church. Hes always willing to work with us when we need it.

Next week na lang,
Elder Polatis

 

Mainit nga!

Mainit nga!

 

The Melo Family!

The Melo Family!

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Weekly letter 5.5.2014: Balik Bayan

Hello My Fam,

Well inch by inch were building the area up here in Batangas. Sometimes it seems more like centimeter by centimeter since we are on the metric system. But we are improving. Were building a good teaching pool off of some good referrals. My companion and I are having a hoot. He is a really crazy indian guy. But hes not really indian hes from Sri Langka and he gets mad when people call him Indian but saying indian is the only way to describe it. They other day we played a prank on the other elders by breaking into there apartment and making it look like they got robbed. We just took all of their valuables and put them in a box in the middle of the room. So now they are taking precautions thinking theres really a robber getting into their apartment. Some of you might be able to understand when I say loko-loko ang companion ko hahaha. Hes a really fun guy to be with and has a really good attitude that connects us with the members more.

Heres and investigator update. That investigator that I was the referral from Idaho from now on I will just say Adrian. He came to church and we taught him again. He never has time during the week. He is actually a rockstar guy he sings in a band all night long and sleeps during the day and they place where he stays is a off limits area or known as the red zone. No missionaries are allowed to go there because its pretty much sodom and gamorrah. Despite that hes still progressing. Another investigator we have thats progressing is kind of an awkward situation. So one of the missionaries that is currently serving but from this ward has a non member girl friend so through a few members we got a hold of her and have been teaching her. But sometimes I just wonder if its because she just has a boyfriend thats mormon. Putting all of that aside though she is flying through the book of mormon and I think she enjoyed church also. They members actually do a really good job with church service here. All of the lessons are prepared and they maintain pretty good reverance. Yesterday in testimony meeting the first one to go up was a 10 year old girl and she was talking about her dream to become a celebrity and she knows that heavenly father will help her accomplish that. She was hilarious but it was a really good meeting.

“Enduring to the End” something really tough to do on a mission I have found. Not that im saying I want to go home or homesick or I cant finish. I dont want you to be misinterpreted. What I mean is its hard to keep that momentum and fire steady on a constant upward straight. The farther up I get the more gravity there is forcing me back down. You think that once you get the language down or after reading preach my gospel numberless times and having notebooks full of notes that it will just be free sailing till the end and everything will go just the way I need. But I found something to be true from a talk by Henry B. Eyring called “Mountains to Climb”. God is never going to let us off easy. First reason is because he has intrusted us with the knowledge of the gospel. “With great power comes great responsibility” -Uncle Ben

Take care until next week,
Elder Polatis

P.S. Mothers day is already here. I will call on Monday morning maybe around 10. So that will be Sunday evening for all of you.

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Weekly letter 4.28.2014: Ano ga arey?

Hey Family,

So I am back in Batangas the land of my forefathers. The Batangas province is actually where my first area was and now it will also be my last. Its ineresting here because they actually speak a different for of tagalog and use a different vocabulary. But I havent had any problem adjusting I still remember it from when I was in Batangas before.

So I must start with the story of Adrian. If you remember the investigator i was teaching in my last area that was a referral from a lady in Idaho. I was so excited to teach him and then It went all down the drain because he picked up another job and moved away. Well guess where he moved to….Batangas City!!!! So first thing I did when I got here was went looking for him. Turns out the members now him as ding dong the rockstar. When he moved to months ago I gave him the address of the church and I sent his information to the missionaries here. He came to church twice in those last 2 months. But I dont know what the missionaries have been doing because he wasnt being taught. So I called him up told him I was here and then he came to church and we taught him the plan of salvation. He has been reading the book of mormon also. Hes now in Alma 62. So it sounds like this is meant to be. Hes golden. He comes to church, he reads the book of mormon alot, he is also being taught by sister missionaries in Salt Lake and his referral over a conference call, and somehow out of the 100 areas in the mission I could have been transferred to I followed him to Batangas. It sounds like god is really working hard on this one guy. But through all of this brother Adrian doesnt see this. He said he wont set a baptismal goal date and he is a little iffy about appointments. But I guess thats what we call agency.

My companion, Elder Abekoon, from Sri Langka is actually a super happy funny guy. He cooks just about anything you can put curry powder in but the chicken curry is still the best. Actually to be honest I cook it as he reads me the recipe from his mom written in some kind of swirly sign language. I was really comfortable in my last area with how everything was. I didnt really want to step out of my comfort zone. I was apprehensive to start over in another area with another companion. But we have had a great start. The previous elders in this area have been super lazy. The members here are just sitting on referrals but I dont think they trusted previous elders. My very first night here I got fed like 3 times. Theres one member here that has 3 missionaries out including one who is serving at the Oakland Temple visitors center. They fed us Ice Cream and oreos live in a house with air conditioning and took us home to our apartment in there 2014 Mitsuibuishi Montero. He actually asked me if I want to drive…of course he was kidding he is also an RM himself. All of the members here a super nice like that also.

You probably noticed in my last email I wasnt to happy about this transfer. I was actually being really stubborn and the opposite of humble. Its been tough starting over. But once I got here i saw a little bit more of god’s reasons for doing this to me. It will also keep me focused till the end.

Love,
Elder Polatis

 

Me and Elder Strobelt got transferred.

Me and Elder Strobelt got transferred.

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Weekly email 4.21.2014: Bagay Tayo

Dear Family,

You know that staples commercial about the EASY button. Ugh theres no such thing. I just found out that im transferred. I had some business to talk about with the assistants and so I called them. They gave me a surprise when they said were glad you called because we have some business for you……TRANSFERRED. My new area is another city called Batangas. Its a pretty popular city in the Philippines and the biggest surprise is my new companion. His name is Elder Abekoon. He is from an island called Sri Langka which is a little tiny thing on the bottom of India but they still have there own personal language. I only know all of these things about him because I was his zone leader in San Pablo. Oh yeah and Im not a zone leader anymore just a regular ol’ missionary for the next 2 transfers of my mission. I am kinda disappointed that I am going to another big city because I dont get to enjoy true Philippine beauty for the last few months being here and I am yet with another companion who is barely capable of communication in either language that I know but thats ok accept it and live with it. This transfer doesnt happen until Thursday so Im still with Elder Mallari for now.

On Wednesday we have something ineresting coming up. The Las Pinas Stake which is from the Manila Mission is going to have a youth conference here in Lucban Quezon which is my zone so this last week we have been working on organizing a Mini MTC program that we are going to teach as part of there conference. So for the most part its just about organizing and giving assignments and then we have our own part that we will teach. They are giving us 4 hours to do all of it. So were just working hard on making it a spiritual experience that will motivate them to serve a mission.

Well I will continue on with my sad news of being transferred. We have 3 baptisms on saturday. Of which I wont be attending so despite doing all the work in preparing them and working hard on helping them through the process I will miss the most rewarding part of it. Pictures are going to do me for now. The investigator I told you about last week is one of those investigators she is really golden she just did everything we told her to do including reading the Book of Mormon nonstop. She is in Alma 15 now.

Elder Polatis

 

Play Day! I mean preparation of course.

Play Day! I mean preparation of course.

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When you say the name Ingrid it makes me think of some like cartoon bully. I can visualize brittany saying Ingrid with a evil laugh. But this little girls name is truly Ingrid. She is one of the primary kids here and the bottom picture is with her friend Morena.

When you say the name Ingrid it makes me think of some like cartoon bully. I can visualize brittany saying Ingrid with a evil laugh. But this little girls name is truly Ingrid. She is one of the primary kids here and the bottom picture is with her friend Morena.

When you say the name Ingrid it makes me think of some like cartoon bully. I can visualize brittany saying Ingrid with a evil laugh. But this little girls name is truly Ingrid. She is one of the primary kids here and the bottom picture is with her friend Morena.

When you say the name Ingrid it makes me think of some like cartoon bully. I can visualize brittany saying Ingrid with a evil laugh. But this little girls name is truly Ingrid. She is one of the primary kids here and the bottom picture is with her friend Morena.

When you say the name Ingrid it makes me think of some like cartoon bully. I can visualize brittany saying Ingrid with a evil laugh. But this little girls name is truly Ingrid. She is one of the primary kids here and the bottom picture is with her friend Morena.

When you say the name Ingrid it makes me think of some like cartoon bully. I can visualize brittany saying Ingrid with a evil laugh. But this little girls name is truly Ingrid. She is one of the primary kids here and the bottom picture is with her friend Morena.

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