Sunday, September 28, 2014

Welcome to San Fernando Ulit 9/28/2014

Kumusta everyone!
So I'm back in San Fernando zone after just 3 short weeks in Bauang. I really miss Bauang though, especially the Fortin family and Sister Rose, but I know that they are going to keep progressing and I should be able to go back to Brother Joey's baptism on the 11th!
So there's not much for me to say right now because I haven't been in my new area for too long, but I'm now in Lingsat Ward with Sister Rae, and I got called as a sister training leader. So now, I'll have to give some workshops and go to leadership council and go on exchanges with the other sisters, so it should be fun! I'm excited to be in this ward though and I've already met some really amazing people here that I'm excited to see progress. The first one is legit a miracle story! Sister Alalaine just showed up at the church one Sunday and said that she had been reading the Book of Mormon and Gospel Principles and wanted to be baptized! So we have been teaching her everyday, even during our P-Day so that she will be prepared for her baptism on October 18th. She's really amazing and just gets everything and comes to the lessons already prepared because she's read about it in Gospel Principles already. God really just prepares people and puts them in the missionaries laps!
Sorry this email is short, I'll have more to share next week so get excited! I love you all, and thanks for the package Mom, I've missed mac and cheese so much! And thanks so much for the birthday package Sara, you're the best!
Mahal Kita,
Sister Bangerter
Sister Rose

The Fortin Family

Transfer Day with my Nanay sister Lazan, my Sister Spjut and our mga anak Sister Panganiban and Sister Golightly

The missionaries in my new ward

My new comp Sister Rae

Sunday, September 21, 2014

The Chicken. 9/21/2014

Kumusta sa inyong lahat!
So this week I experienced my first typhoon! It was epic, and there were two of them. But don't worry, I'm safe and our apartment is fine, it was just the most intense rain storm I've ever been in. Just imagine "The Other Side of Heaven" when there's that huge rainstorm, and that's been my week! Rain or shine, and even in the middle of typhoons, we still go out to preach the gospel. A lot of people kept commenting about our dedication as we walked soaking wet through the streets, but they still didn't want to listen to us. But it's ok because at least now they recognize us as dedicated servants of the Lord!
So since it's been raining cats and dogs here, we were punted a lot, but we still had some amazing lessons with Brother Joey Fortin. I talked about him last week, and he's still one of my favorite people. His conversion is just like Alma the Younger. His wife and daughter are members, and he used to be so against the church. He's hide from the missionaries and even tried to stop his daughter from going to church things. But now, he realizes the importance of the gospel in his life, and has a broken heart and a contrite spirit. We taught him about the Atonement this week, and it was the most powerful lesson I've had with him. He truly recognizes that without Christ, he can do nothing, but because of His infinite and eternal atonement, we are made clean and we can change. It's for moments like that, when I see someone realize the power and impact of the atonement in their life, and make the steps to change and accept the gospel that all the hours we got straight punted in a typhoon suddenly don't matter anymore because I'm here on my mission for people like Brother Joey. I love this gospel, and my mission and the eternal perspective that it's given me.
So even though this week had its ups and downs with the weather, I can still look back and see all the good that has come out of our efforts. I love you all, thanks for the prayers, and I hope that you all take advantage of this gospel because it really is what matters most.
Shout outs to Sister Aimee Smith, thanks for being my visiting teacher from across the globe! And Happy Birthday Dad! I hope you had a great birthday ya old man ;) don't worry, still young at heart!
Mahal Kita,
Sister Bangerter

PS- on a totally unrelated and nonspiritual note, let me tell you about the chicken. So the other day, I'm just downstairs putting in my contacts when someone comes to the door. They ask for Sister Villiarin, but she was at the market, so the man just hangs me this blue bag and asks me to give it to her. As he walks away, he kind laughs and yells that it's a live chicken...I didn't know if he was joking, but then I see a beak sticking out of the bottom! I just put it on the table and refused to look in the bag until someone else came down stairs. Five minutes later, Sister Tanner and Sister Villiarin come home from the market and are all excited because the bag is there. They take it in the laundry room and pull out a live chicken! So they bought a chicken so that they could kill it themselves and eat it haha. So we had a chicken chilling and pooping all over our laundry room for a few days, and then on Saturday, they killed it and made Arescaldo with it. Needless to say, it was fresh, and none of us could finish it and we're all off chicken for a while. Oh the experiences of the mission, gotta love it!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Totoong Kaligayahan 09/15/2014

Kumusta sa inyong lahat!
This was an absolutely great week! I have been so happy this week and so many amazing things happened that I can't wait to tell ya'll about. I have really felt this week the true happiness of missionary work, and I just really love the Philippines, even though I do still sometimes miss things in America, I am so thankful that I got sent to the Pines. Here are a few reasons why I loved this week:
1. We had FHE with an older woman in the branch who hasn't been visited by missionaries for a while. She's an active member, but is just a little forgotten. We planned a simple FHE for her, and told her to prepare rice and we'd bring the ulam (what you eat with rice). We show up, and she has prepared the most humble and delicious meal for us of rice and fried fish. It was just the three of us, but it was the most heart warming experience. The people here just love to serve the missionaries, and I'm so blessed to be among them.
2. Brother Joey Fortin has the biggest desire to change his life! He is married to a member who has been kind of less active, and just recently, he has a huge change of heart and went from wanting nothing to do with the missionaries to wanting us to visit on a daily basis. He said he used to never like talking about spiritual stuff, and never really thought about God, but since we've been teaching him, he realized how important the gospel of Jesus Christ is and that God has a plan for him and his family. All he wants is for his family to be more united and blessed from the gospel. He has a baptismal date for October 11, and he is reading the BoM daily and progressing like none other. I love the Fortin family!
3. My companion is the best and hilarious, we just laugh and laugh all day and teach amazing spirit filled lessons, it's been so great! Oh, and there was one day this week I forgot my umbrella, and she let me use hers all day and got all wet, and even fell, but she didn't even care cause she just wanted to serve me. I love Sister Bircher!
4. Sister Rose Espinosa is proof that God prepares people before this life to accept the gospel. She met the missionaries two days after she has told her Iglesia ni Cristo sister that if she joined any church it would be the mormons, and she knew nothing about our church before then. This week, we taught her the plan of Salvation, and it was the most amazing experience to watch her realize that she knew and accepted this plan before she even came to this earth. That's why what we are teaching her, and what we say sounds so familiar to her. Then, also this week, she told us that she prayed about Joseph Smith, and as she read the BoM the next day, she knew by the spirit that it was true! She then told us that the next step she should take is to ask someone with authority to baptize her! Yeah, I never thought someone would tell me that on my mission, but Sister Rose is making all of my mission dreams come true. I love Sister Rose!
5. I hit my year mark in the mission, and I'm really realizing now that at some point, this will all come to an end. It's really sad to think that I will leave these wonderful people and everything will just be great memories, but I know that my mission has and is continuing to change me for the better and I know what's important in my life because of the experiences I've had here. The one thing I've learned the most, just from this week alone, is that I know that I have a loving Heavenly Father. He loves me so much that He sent me to the Philippines where I would meet people who would love me like my own family, and show me that even though we may come from different countries and lifestyle, the gospel can bring us together and the love of God and the love of Christ is universal.
Sorry this was long, but I'm just so full of love this week for a lack of better words. I hope you all can love each other and remember to serve your neighbor always. Thanks Grandma and Sami for the letters, and happy birthday Brooklyn!
Mahal Kita,
Sister Bangerter
My first kabahay! Now Sister Lazan goes home next transfer and Sister Bircher in December

This describes our tricompanionship ha

My AP and first zone leader leaves this transfer, so this would be my last time to see him at our conference

Some of my batch mates on our year mark

Rice fields

Sketchy bridges

Dragon Fruit

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Magulo Pa Rin! 09/07/2014

Kumusta sa inyong lahat!
Well the craziness hasn't stopped yet! This has seriously been the most magulo transfer of my mission! So I thought last week that I would be staying in a trisome with Sister Parker and Sister Rea, but then on Friday morning during our studies, we got a call from the AP that I would be transferred to Bauang with Sister Bircher for the rest of this transfer, and then come back to San Fernando Zone. So I now have my fourth companion of the transfer, and it will only be for about two and a half weeks, but we're really happy to be together and our area is awesome!
So a little about my companion, Sister Bircher was my first housemate in Baguio in my first area. She's only 12 weeks ahead of me in the mission, and we became good friends in my first area, so things have been really fun in Bauang, and we're excited to be together! She's had a really crazy transfer too, probably more than me. She had kidney stones and had to go to Manila to have an operation, then once she got back, she was only with her companion for a week before she got emergency transferred, then her new companion went home for homesickness. So we are both very happy to be settled and have each other as companions. It's basically an open area here too becasue she hasn't had much time to work in her own area with all these switches, but the branch is super nice and the people here are just golden! We already have a couple of families who are so prepared for baptism with huge testimonies, so I'm excited to get to know them better and work hard for the time that I have here in this area!
Sorry my brain is really scattered at the moment, but as you can tell, this whole transfer has been pretty scattered! Next week, I'll have some great stories about the people we're teaching so just get excited for those!
Well, to end this, here are some randoms from my week:
1. We still had the mumps or whatever it was for a good week until I got transferred. I think I've watched every church movie in my old apartment, and I'm officially in love with the new EFY CD.
2. Tried my first Tim Tam Slam and considering moving to Australia because of it
3. Realized that I can cook :)
4. Our district leader compared us to Job...
5. And Happy late Birthday Brigham, I hope you got my card!
6. I'm almost a year on the mission!
Ok I love ya'll, sorry for this random email,
Mahal Kita,
Sister Bangerter

Monday, September 1, 2014

May Sakit Kami 9/1/2014

So there's really not much for me to say this week either. Tuesday and Wednesday, I went on exchanges with my companions since they're the STL's and oh my goodness it was the most exhausting thing ever! But it was fun getting to be with Sister Sidwell again for a day. We've been kabahay our entire mission until now so it was nice to hang out with her again. Then on Wednesday, we went and worked in my old ward in San Fernando with Sister Santa Maria. Once we got back on Thursday though, Sister Parker came down with the mumps (none of us are really sure what that is yet) so we couldn't go out and work that day because her face was swollen and she really wasn't feeling well. On Friday, we were all pumped to go out and work hard since we couldn't on Thursday. We had a couple lessons in the morning, but then Sister Parker was feeling dizzy again, so we came home and rested for her to get better. Then by Saturday and Sunday, we were all infected. So these past four days we've been best friends with our pillows and just trying to wait it out. It got so bad that we couldn't even stay for all of sacrament meeting on Sunday, so pray that all of us will feel better so that we can work hard this week to make up for the time that we lost. I've never wanted to leave the apartment so badly even if it's either raining or a million degrees outside! Being sick has definitely made me realize that no matter how exhausting the work can get, I'd much rather be out sharing the gospel with others than confined in my apartment. But I do love my companions so even though it's been a slow week, it was great getting to know them better and I'm grateful for our companionship!
Sorry not much to say, but we are teaching a Korean lady, and it's in ENGLISH! Yeah I was having a major nose bleed in that lesson, even just to say the prayer in all English, I sometimes feel like it's my second language now ha.
Well I love you all and hope that you never get the mumps or whatever they are!
Mahal Kita,
Sister Bangerter
Exchanges with Sister Sidwell

My Companions Sister Rae and Sister Parker (people call us the Power Puff Sisters ha)