Monday, April 20, 2015

This lovely week for Elder Carlton

​This week was a pretty interesting week. A lot of things happened and so now I get to share them with you. It started out with my encounter with a toko. They are about the size of my forearm so like a foot in length and are a lizard. So if you know me and my love for creatures of that sort you can prob imagine my love for it. I freaked out when i saw it and my companion just laughed and laughed at me.
This week was really fun with having to stay up and do laundry for 4 hrs. My hands were so raw. Not to mention that i was super tired the rest of the week and i just really wanted to be done with the days and come home and sleep. 

We started to cook some pretty decent meals now  so I think i will be starting to gain some weight back. Good thing but not good.

The area I am in is next to tacloban so it is an area that got hit by the typhoon. Still 2 years later it is still struggling to get back to how it was before. I met one of the members that had a sad experience with the typhoon. In the area I am assigned there were 8 deaths and out of those 8, 2 of them were from his family. His wife and his son died in the storm. I was almost in tears as he told the story of how much he loved them and how he wished he could be with them again. He said his wife was in the process of becoming a school teacher and how she loved to teach. Then he said that he knows his wife is teaching children in the spirit world.

These people here have such a strong testimony of the gospel and so do i. I really am glad that i have the knowledge that I do about the gospel. Especially the Atonement.

Sorry this is short. not a lot of time today to email. 

Love you all
 Elder Carlton

Monday, April 13, 2015

A week in April

HEY guys! This week was pretty awesome. We got to watch conference! Such a spiritual, uplifting time.

I really was touched by the talk about how music is the gospel and how we need to share it with others. When the prophet sustaining was going on and one person objected, my heart sank. I wondered in my head as to why someone would do something like that? Was it for laughs or to get a good kick out of conference? I don't know the reason as to why they did that but for me it really strengthened my testimony for me to know that we have a living prophet on the earth today. He is called of god and we need to head to his council. I sustain him and follow the council he gives.

This week was kind of a struggle with transfers and conference. We worked as much as we could in the time that we had available.
Its been a lot of fun walking every where. We have talked to lots of people as we walk. Even though it may take longer to get to our designated place we are planting seeds in people that may soon want to have the gospel in their lives.

Elder Magtanum and I are getting along really well. We have had a few things that we do differently and when one of us does it we look at each other and just laugh. Its still an adjusting phase, but when we can just laugh and accept another way of doing something we learn something that may be easier than how we would have done something or we learn that we can find ways to make things easier for people.

The work here is going pretty well. We have had a rough week teaching, but numbers are not important. Sure they show maybe how effective you were in the week statistically, but I learned this week that although we didnt have a ton of lessons. We still were able to bring people to Christ.

For the first few weeks of my mission I was under the impression that we had to have lessons to show how effective we are. Its true but the most important thing is bringing people unto christ. Maybe the circumstances were not appropriate to teach at that time so we would show our love and appreciation for them and ask for a time we could come back.

We visited so many people and invited them to conference and we tried to incorporate the He lives video into our teaching.

Its amazing how the lord works sometimes. When I got the assignment as district leader I was really shocked that I was being called to serve as district leader. I felt so unqualified and inadequate for this assignment.(still do) But as I thought about it, this is exactly what the lord wants. Someone who will rely on him to guide his people in the way that the spirit wants not in the way that the missionary knows everything and is just telling others what he knows, but in the way that the spirit directs.

Its funny how it all kinda works out. I had been praying for a way to better understand and recognize the spirit guiding me in teaching and where and what to do and my prayer was answered.
Hope all is well for all of you.
(or in waray ELDER CARTON)

Change is always the answer

This past week has been a really fun week for me. I had the opportunity to work with my branch mission leader for the week. He is a really funny guy. He is in his 30's so it made it a little awkward for me some of the times when we were at the house at night. He made me laugh so hard one morning when I woke up. He woke at like 5 and he just sat in his bed playing games on his phone. Well he forgot to turn the sound off so his shooting game was a nice awaking for me. I tried really hard this last week to visit everyone that I had ever come in contact with in the area and try to share something about the gospel with them. It was really fun to see the smiles I brought to some peoples faces.

Sad to say I have been transferred to a new area. I am super sad to leave San Isidro. I received a letter from my father and in it he talked about how you will always love your first area. It is the place where you learn to do missionary work. Where you first learn to love the people. He went on to say that it is always hard to leave at transfer time. It is so true. I really grew to love that area and to love everyone there. Even the water bill lady was sad to hear  that i was leaving. I only saw her 6 times. I was assigned there for about 6 months. 1/4 of my mission done and in the past. 

So transfers came and I am now assigned in Jaro. Its pronounced with the Spanish way like Jose. Made the mistake of saying it the american way. oops! My new companion is Elder Magtanum. He is Filipino. He is super funny and really loving. We are about an hour outside of Tacloban. Way better than the 7hr trip I had to make from my last area. I dont know much about the area yet. The apartment is really interesting. It is nice. Its totally an elders apartment. Not the cleanest thing but its good. No more laundry shop in the area so I will have to be doing all my laundry by hand now. 

We took a jeepney to the area and the people put my luggage on the top of the jeepney, didnt tie it down or anything. Sure enough i look out the window and see my suitcase go flying off the side. I think one of the miracles of a mission is that you are protected. Even the luggage. Nothing happened to the suitcase or anything inside. just a little scuff mark on top. The lord was really watching out for me. 

I got assigned as District leader in my new area. Im excited for the opportunity to serve others but I definitely feel the pressure.

Im doing well, im healthy and doing my best I can.

Love always,
Elder Carlton

March 30

So this week was full of all sorts of good things to tell. It started first with P-Day where we went to the beach and I got attacked by a monkey. Forgot to add that in last weeks letter. Then Monday night we headed back to our area to work. We taught one lesson to a Less active. It was a good lesson. He had a good time asking us lots of questions.
Tuesday we woke up and went to a Community Service Project where we helped a family pour cement to level out the floor in the house. I am glad that I had the opportunity to work in the hot sun before my mission. It really trained me to be able to work now  where the sun never goes away and you feel like the sun is never going to go away. We then had exchanges with the other elders in our district. While we were on exchanges we got to teach a family that is less active and bring the spirit into the lesson. It was really neat to see that they were able to feel the spirit and for them to really understand me because I still struggle with the language and really understanding people.
Anyways, we continued with exchanges Wednesday because we had to sleep in Allen that night. We got punted all day Wednesday. Every house we went to no one was home or they were busy, so it made it really hard for us to be able to teach anybody. We stopped at a hut that over looked the ocean and I said a prayer to please help us find one person that we would be able to teach. I was for sure that we would be able to find someone right after that. Well we didnt. We were on our way back home at night and we ran into a older member that is partially blind and was trying to find his way back home so we helped him find the way back home and the family invited us in to share with them. We felt prompted to share about the restoration so we did. Its amazing how the spirit works. I dont know why we shared about it or if it really had an effect on the people we taught but it was a lesson that we really had the spirit with us and I was really grateful for it. The restored gospel of Jesus Christ is really here on the earth today and I am so glad that i am apart of it!
Thursday we had zone conference! we talked about the missionary schedule and how important it is for us and how we can really have success as we follow it. 
Thursday night we slept in one of the other elders apartment. No rides going back to our area. 
Friday we traveled back to allen and we stayed for lunch then by the time we were ready to go it was pretty late so we came back and we went and supported some of our investigators at their high school graduation. They held the ceremony in English so it was really good for me. I understood everything! Everyone stood up to sing the national anthem and I stood up to find out that i was sitting in a pile of red ants. I got bitten pretty bad so my arm itches and is kinda swollen. haha. 
Saturday we had a CSP in one of the other areas and we helped  a family cut roots. It was alot like trimming bushes. Hard work. We were supposed to have interviews for our people getting baptized this coming saturday but we were late getting back and so we missed the interviews. 

The zone leaders were not very happy with us. mainly my companion because he acted like it was no big deal. 

My companion has not wanted to work at all this past week so our area has struggled a little bit. Long story short. He is no longer my companion. I have spent the past few days with the Zone leaders working in their area. Hopefully this week I will be able to go back and work!

This week was a week that I will remember from my mission. While we were in Zone Conference we talked about Easter and the new mormon message that has come out. Its called because he lives. It is really good! I hope all of you have the opportunity to watch it. 

Lastly, becasuse of the time difference I will not be watching conference live like most of you so please hold off on sending the talks and favorite quotes and things from conference till the next week. I will get to watch it the 11-12 of april. 

Love you all
Elder Carlton
- I got really sunburned this week. I look like a lobster
-I had ice cream almost every day this week!


 This week was a week worth remembering. It was filled with all kinds of stories to tell. But I only have a little bit of time so I will tell the story that I liked the best. So this week we had a district activity at some of the most beautiful looking water falls I have been to yet. It was so pretty. You could walk behind it and take some really good pictures. So I took a lot of pictures. Its better to have more than not enough. You can always delete pictures if you need too. So I took some really good pictures. It was really good. It is starting the summer season here so there is hardly any rain. Different than 4 months ago where the rain was never going to end. Well it's just the opposite here. It has been so hot. It feels like summer every day here. Its been crazy. I spent most of my week on exchanges in Allen this week. It was a lot of fun. I got to have a good missionary working hard all day experience! It was really awesome! Anyways, so the awesome story!!! So while I was on exchanges I finally decided to contact my mission presidents wife about this infection I have had for the past 2 weeks. So she told me to take picture and send it to her. So I did. I ejected my memory card from the computer and then I forgot to upload a picture so i plugged it back in. A little problem occured. My memory card said it had an error. So I tried it again and again. But nothing. If you havent picked up yet my memory card had been wiped. No pictures. It made my heart sink. I had taken over 2000 pictures and it was the first 6 months of my mission. Gone Just like that. So my companion at the time said lets go see if we can get it recovered. So we fould a guy that tried to recover it but he only could recover every other picture. It was like ugh. So sad. Then I remembered that I had backed up my pictures to my flash drive 2 weeks ago just to be safe. So I only lost pictures from like a week. Good thing. It was really a scary moment I freaked and was really sad that I didnt get to have all my pictures but as I thought about the situation I decided to look at the positve about everything. So it is with life. We have things that happen to us that we can not control or we can not fix or are just out of our reach to understand at this point in life. So it is our attitude that has to change about the way that we view every thing. We have the opportunity to change ourselves and the way we view the things that happen to us. This transfer has been really hard for me and has been a transfer of trying really hard to look at the positve of things and how I can adjust myself to make things work for the best of everyone around me. Para sa imo, how can you make the situation you are in better? Change your attitude!!! 
So for the update of the area I am in. This week we found out that if we tried really hard and taught a lot of lessons we could have 5 baptisms by the end of this transfer!! Crazy to think that we could have 5. One of the kids was baptized when he was seven. The mistake of the missionaries. They got the birthdate wrong. So he needs to be rebaptized. Then we have 3 kids from a family that I have been teaching for a while that are ready and a daughter of a part member that is ready as well. Although they are only children and are all under the age of 15 it is still neat to think that we will have those baptisms. The cool thing about all of this is that most of these baptisms are going to soon complete families or be in families where the gospel is strong and has a big part in their lives so Im not super worried about them going less active in the near future. So its been really neat teaching them. We actually get the opportunity tonight to teach them again. It cuts our P-Day short but thats a sacrafice that Im willing to make. Something else that is neat is one of our recent converts will have the opportunity to baptize them!
That sums up my week. Its been a rough time with the language but I am getting it. Maybe another few months and I will have it down. Just maybe!
Anyways, I hope that you are enjoying the letters Im sending. If there is stuff you want me to send that im not including then let me know. Transfer day is April 7. only 2 weeks away. Crazy how time goes.
Love always your favorite,
 Elder Carlton
Fun facts- It hasnt dropped below 85 degrees here at night. Super hot!
- Im turning into a red lobster. the sun here burns me really bad. not the nice tanning I got back home.
- I still have my super sensitve hearing at night so i hear everything. It great!

March 16

This week seemed to go by pretty fast. It started on monday where we
got to go to a waterfall. It was pretty cool. It was really neat!
Tuesday was Zone training meeting and we learned how to be better
preach my gospel missonaries. then wednesday was exchanges with the
zone leaders. IT was really neat to hear how the lord inspires some
people with things to say sometimes. I said goodbye to one of the
youngmen in my ward. It was really sad to see him leave for his
mission but i know that he is doing what he needs to do right now.
Sorry this is short. there really wasnt a lot that happened this week.
SO much of personal growth and development that I dont really know how
to explain through email. It was really neat for me! I am greatful for
the challanges that the lord gives me. It really is a pain but i know
that the lord will bless us for our obedience to follow what he has in
store for us. It really is hard especially right now for me to see
what the lord wants me to learn but I am willing to learn and keep
growing and being the best that I can be

March 9

Its been a month since my birthday!!! Its crazy how time flies. So this week I hit my six month mark. I am officially now past the 6 month mark!! It feel like it has been forever but at the same time it feels like it has been a week or 2.

This week was a week that was so awesome! I was able to go on splits with one of the branch missionaries and we did amazing things! We taught some really good lessons and had a blast laughing my head off the whole time! 

This week was really neat. It didnt feel like we taught a lot of lessons because some days we were punted ( being rejected all day long) but then other days we taught like 6 lessons a day! It was really neat.

We had the opportunity to go to the bukid (desolate place in the middle of nowhere). The middle of nowhere and do a community service project! We helped a family gather coconuts. It was a lot of hard work.
Did you know coconuts aren't really brown? That may sound like im stupid but i didnt know that before i came on a mission. 

I dont have something really fancy this week to talk about.

This past sunday we had 6 investigators at sacrament meeting. It was so neat to see them come to church. One of the investigators asked me after sunday school what it felt like to be baptized. I paused for a second and had to take a second to think about how to describe the feeling of being baptized. All I could think of was how happy I was when I was baptized and how I knew that it was the right thing. So I told her that and she got the biggest smile on her face. She said she wanted to have that feeling. Pretty neat! There is a rule in our mission that minors have to attend church for 4 months consecutive before baptism. So it means that she cant be baptized till June. Unless her parents are baptized then it can be 4 weeks. 

This upcoming week is going to hopefully fly by really fast. We have Zone Training meeting a party tmrw night. ( No its not a real part, Its an open house for Reyponz)

This week was good for spiritual insight for me. I have been studying the plan of salvation a lot this week and I came across the topic of the fall of adam and eve which led to adversity. As I thought about adversity this week I really came to understand Christ's Atonement for us. Christ faced a lot of adversity in his life. Then on top of it all he took upon himself all the sins of the world so we can return to live in the presence of Our Heavenly Father. As I thought about this and how through the adversities that Christ faced, he did it so he could understand each one of us.We have a father in Heaven who loves us very much. Through the times we struggle most he is there for us. At times it feels like he is the only person we can talk to. It feels like we are all alone and have nowhere to go. But this is only the thinking of the adversary and what he wants us to think. This leads to us making decisions that we regret and puts us in a state of misery that we feel like we can never escape. 

"For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father. (Mosiah 3:19, The Book of Mormon)

How true this scripture really is. The lord will throw challenges at us that we don't want to face. Challenges that we feel like will never end. We need to become like a child and submit our will to the fathers.

I know that things maybe tough for us right now at the moment but it is something that we need to do and endure and try to see what god needs us to learn. The message that I am called by god to serve is a message that can help us through our trials that we are facing. IT brings comfort and peace and joy to our lives. 

This gospel is something I love dearly and wish everyone would listen to it. It has changed my life.

Love always,
Elder Carlton 

Its March???

Its finally march which means that I have now been gone for 6 months. Wow. that time seems to have gone by pretty quick. Lots of struggles and challenges but lots of fun times as well.

I can think back to my first day in the MTC. I thought what the heck is my teacher speaking? Now I can carry on a conversation ok. Still dont know a lot of what is being said but I can get the gist of it. 

This week has been a perfect time for self-reflection. I had a lot of time to study this week. My companion is sick and he hasnt liked to go anywhere. he just likes to sleep and sleep and hopefully get better. 

We taught a few lessons this week. not a lot but some really good lessons. Its been neat to see the changes in people!

Our investigators close to baptism have t be pushed back. we have more to teach them than we have time for. 

Reyponz (one of the branch missionaries)  leaves for his mission next week. I am going to miss him so much. He is one of the coolest people ever. He doesn't like Americans but he loves me to death. He made a remembrance for me and in it he said he has appreciated all i have done for him. I will miss him and prob cry when he leaves. Especially now when we get along really well.

Its crazy to see the big change that has happened over the past 6 months here in this area. I think all they needed was a big smile to greet them all the time. Some people love it and others are like why is that guy smiling all the time. Its because i love the gospel of Jesus Christ and I want to share it with others.  

2 less actives are almost reactivated. I dont know if it was because of me or not but it has been so awesome to see them come back to church and work with us. 

I love this area. its hard and i want to change the situation I am in but then i think that I need to be here and keep learning and growing. 

Keep smiling!!!   :D :D :D:D:D:D:D:D

Love always
Elder Carlton

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


This week was full of all ups and downs for me. I learned to manage on the littlest of money and I learned how to say some new things in the language. 

This week I really questioned why I was on my mission. I thought about it and how I could be in school or working or doing something better with my life but as I thought about it I kept thinking of the things I treasure most in life and what the root of everything is. It is the gospel of Jesus Christ It is the center of our lives. It is something that i treasure very dear and am so grateful to have it in my life. I have come to learn the basics of it and how i treasure it so much. 

This week we had the opportunity to go on splits with the ward mission leader and one of the branch missionaries that is getting ready to leave for his mission. I went with the ward missionary. We got along really well so it was a lot of fun for me to be able to go with him. We talk to each other and had fun learning new phrases from each other. We laughed so much that day. It really was a lot of fun. I loved being able to work with him! It will be sad to see him leave. He only has 3 more weeks till he leaves for his mission in the southern Philippines. 

We got to clean the apartment this week. much needed. It looks so much better now. I spent an hour cleaning the bathroom. All the times mom had me clean the bathroom were for a good reason. It pays off now. I didn't think about it till now but as we grow up our parents teach us things that sometimes we think are not in our best interest and that we can do something better or we have a better way. Well for me I was wrong. My parents knew pretty well what I needed to learn. Even if it was cleaning a bathroom to make it shine. 

This week  I finished the book of Mormon. It was really neat to say i finished it in 3 transfers. So about 18 weeks. I leaned so much from it. I learned  how to make myself better and how to accomplish new things! 

Anyways. I am ready to face the new challenges of this week. Love you guys and wish you were here to experience this with me! It is truly a blessing to be here. I wouldn't change it for anything. 

Love Jordan

Wednesday, January 21, 2015


Hey Guys,

As you are probably wondering we had a typhoon come through. I was really scared for this one because I heard something about it and everyone was like whatever nothing big. Well Saturday came and my companion got up at 6 to do laba. I slept in till 6:30. It was great. So we woke up and i noticed it was raining. Ok no big deal. Just a little rain. We got a text at 7 saying that we needed to stay inside all day for our safety. Well that put a big dent in what i was going to do. So I decided to do laba myself. 2 hrs later all my garments were done and 2 of my shirts I had left over. When I was finished i walked back into the main room and my companion was not there so i went to the bedroom to find him taking a nap. So i decided to clean my desk and pack up some stuff I wasn't going to use for a while. It was much needed. We went to the store and bought some food and then came back. I did some studying and then we decided to clean a little more. It started to rain harder and harder so we had to move the desks away from the window. It was leaking. Well it became night time and it still was raining and getting harder. It was a boring day but it went by too fast. I really needed it though. Oh did I mention that the power went out at like 8 in the morning? So it was pitch black by like 6. I decided to use the candle that I had instead of my flashlight. I got caught up in my journal and the we went to bed. We got a text saying to stay awake if we can so I laid in bed for a while. Our apartment flooded a bit prob like 3 in of water. only like a 1/4 in was inside though so it was good.

I have a new companion his name is Elder Reyes. He is really good at working hard. I knew I was going to have hard companions to get along with I just wasnt expecting it to be so soon. So its been a fun really rough first week. I think i have gone to bed praying the hardest this past week than I think I ever have.

Nothing new really happened this week. Besides transfers and the typhoon and church. We didnt really teach a lot. Only a few lessons. Have 2 people with baptism dates and the dates are right after this next transfer so we'll see what happens with that. 

Oh something big POPE FRANCIS came to the Philippines!!!! It was super cool to hear him talk. He said some things that are really important. He talked about families being the center of our homes. Its neat because that is exactly what we teach in our church. Except we add on the part that it is so we can learn and grow and help each other in the gospel. Become what heavenly father wants us to be. And the family is the basic unit of how we can do that. So awesome.

I lost my tie clip this week for real. We were walking down the street and i looked down and it wasnt there. Ugh. It was more sad that it was something that my dad had given me and told me to remember what it said on it than actually loosing it. sentimental value. So i resorted to using one that i got a while ago when i was like 8. lost that one too. that one was my favorite though. it was the nike swoosh with the angel moroni on the end blowing his trumpet. UGH trials we have to face in life. 

This week I have really learned to rely on the lord for a lot of things. Mainly having him there for us to talk to each and every time we need him. When we struggle and when we succeed he loves to hear us. 

I would challenge you all at the end of each day to kneel and talk to heavenly father. He really loves to hear us. He loves to help us with our our struggles and with anything we need. He loves us so much. 

A quick scripture to show how prophets have a sense of humor. In Alma 44 Moroni was fighting the lamanites  He basically tells the lamanites that if they dont stop fighting then game on and we are going to defeat you. something like that . I found it really funny. The goal this month in our mission has been relying on the powers of heaven. I encourage you do do that . However you feel is necessary. Do it. It works. 

Love Always,
Elder Carlton


So this week has been a week of craziness. It started on Monday. We had sunlight for the whole day. then it was sunny all week long. We took our laundry to the laundry lady. We don't have time to spend doing laundry by ourselves. It normally will take like 3 hrs do do it all. So we sacrificed a little money and got it done. Then to top it all off we had amazing lesson that night with a family about families and how they can be together forever. Well it turned into the mom getting upset about her son doing some things that weren't the best and... Lesson went down the drain. The rest of the week was a lot better. We had zone conference about recognizing the spirit and then found out that transfers were changing from the end of this week to tomorrow so it was a stressful few day leading up till now. Trying to visit all the people we wanted to remember. So, fun days for us. I found out last night that I am staying another transfer here in this area and my companion is transferring out. He was very sad. I taught him a lot while we were together.

I made chicken nuggets the other night. It was super expensive but it was so good. 

So investigators.

We had amazing week with the spirit working with us. We were able to teach lessons and have our investigators really understand what we were teaching and then to have our testimonies really testify was beyond amazing. Although we only taught 12 lessons we were really thankful that the spirit was with us during the time of need in our lessons. Having the spirit is something that can also warn of danger. We had planned to teach a lesson with a group of people this past week and so we went to the lesson. As we entered the walkway to the group of houses I got this feeling to leave. I ignored it at first and thought "Why leave? We are supposed to be teaching them." We continued to go in more. We walked into a group of women. NO male to be seen. Second some of them were not fully dressed and then to top it all off, there was a woman showering. She was behind a board but her head and  shoulders were visible. I had the same prompting come back even stronger. LEAVE NOW. So i told my companion about it and i got out as soon as possible. The spirit will testify of all things that are good. If it is bad it is of the devil. If it makes us have to second guess our self it is not good.

While studying the scriptures this week  I learned a lot. I was reading in The Book of Mormon, in Alma about the resurrection and how everything will be restored to its perfect frame.
Here in the Philippines there are a lot of birth defects that hinder the way people move. So this scripture really was a hit to the head of how exciting it is for all of us to be able to become completely restored to the best we can be. Then I thought of my dad and how he loves this scripture a lot and how he will have a full head of hair when he is resurrected.(bringing back the glory days)  hahaha. 

I grow a new love each day for the time I have to serve the people here. I got bored one night so i calculated how many hours I have left till i come home. After taking out eating and sleeping and down time I came to realize that I only have 5000 hours to bring people closer to christ. So im working harder to bring people closer to Christ. 

One last story about being diligent. So we were going through the area book ( the book that tells where the area is, people, records, and so forth) and we found 15 records that had not been completed... One of those was for a young woman who was going to the temple that day. Long story short, we got a call from the temple that her record number was not in the computer so she didnt get to go. So we spent the whole day doing our best to get everything filled out for all the records. 
So i learned to do my best and always finish a task thoroughly so others dont have to fix stuff that you didnt do. 

Anyways. I love this gospel and am thankful for all of the things I have gotten to do here.

Love ya

Elder Carlton

Fun facts

we made cookies in a toaster oven

I am staying for 6 more weeks


So to start this letter let me tell you about Christmas and New Years eve.

Christmas- we had the opportunity to visit the other elders in my district and we spent Christmas going to a wedding and a baptism. What better way to spend Christmas than to witness the real meaning of having someone take the first step to enter the kingdom of heaven. It was an amazing thing to witness. I had a powerful witness of the real meaning of Christmas  It was by far my favorite one by far. The no presents thing was a big change  but i got a present that i will cherish forever. I got to talk to my family for while and to tell them about how awesome I am and how much i am loving it here. The work of the lord never ends so we were out working on Christmas day. In the Philippines Christmas is celebrated for like 3 months but when it comes to Christmas day it is just like every normal day. all the stores are open and everyone is doing everything normal. for me it rained on Christmas eve. Like poured rain. If it were snow we prob would have gotten like 5 feet. We visited a member of the other ward with the other missionaries that night and we ate and had a great time. I got a recipe for myself. pretty excited about that. So yay me!

New Years. So New Years eve was on a Wednesday this year. So on Monday the lord really wanted to test my patience level and see how willing i was to focus on the work. I was really excited to email everyone and tell you all how Christmas went for me. Well that didn't really happen. Instead I was given the challenge that every computer i went to the internet would not work for me. I got a little frustrated but I was willing to be ok with not letting everyone know about how awesome my day was. So Monday we had a zone activity and then a brown out. no power. So much fun. We were traveling back on the jeepney and the cover would not stay down so my back was drenched and then to top it all off the jeepney broke down. So when we got to the jeep terminal there were no more rides going back to our area. So we went to the Allen Elders apartment and spent the night there. We got up in the morning to leave but we got a text from the Zone Leaders telling us that we were not to work that day (tuesday) so instead we tried to email but it didnt work again for me. I was  only able to email my mission president. On our way to email I was told that we were in a typhoon again. It was only a signal 1 so just a lot of rain enough to flood the city. haha. So I had a little bit of fun playing in the flood. Oops. Well the water came up to my knees and i was having a blast till we got a text asking if any of the missionaries had been through the flood water. Yeah didnt cross my mind how dangerous it was till then. So when i got back I showered and cleaned up. We ate lunch and then we traveled home. We spend a lot of time searching for people and trying to make everyone have a good new years. New years for us consisted of us looking around the block and seeing 54 massive speakers surrounding our house, and deciding that we were going to leave. So back to Allen we went. We had a good time with the Elders there and when midnight was near fireworks galore. bigger than the fourth of July  It had to have been like double the city fireworks. To top it off everyone bangs what ever they can. So my ears were shot. If I would have had money I would have carried on the tradition of my father. throwing plates off the balcony. I guess it was a good thing I didnt have money. 

So there are the two events of the past two weeks. On Friday I went on splits with the zone leaders (zl's). It was a blast. The ZL I went with was like a foot taller than me. We had a lot in common so we got along really well. He is always super happy which is awesome. It makes it really easy to talk to people. We rocked the exchanges. I was doing pretty well with the language and we committed 3 less active families to come to church. Well all three families showed up. well all three families but not the whole families. But it was ok. Little by little.

So our investigators- We have currently 8 new investigators and 3 families. We gained another one last night. They are doing all really well and we are progressing with them pretty well, except none of them will come to church. So our numbers we report at the end of each week look really bad. But we are doing work here. I will be sad to leave all our investigators and less actives and recent converts we have here in this branch. 

One last thing. I am approaching the end of my first 12 weeks. Can you believe that it's been that long? I found out that one of us will be transferring from this area. I will be really sad if I transfer. I love this area so much. More importantly the people here. I was told that as I loved the people I would find ways to help everyone of them. I have seen that work time and time again. It is so amazing how simple that phrase is and how it is so true. 

I am so greatful for the opportunity to be able to let all of you know how i am doing. It really makes me reflect on how much I have learned and how much I have grown. It also gives me a break from going nonstop. I think almost every night i will be saying my prayers and i will fall asleep during them. I can tell those are the days that I gave it my all.

I am loving serving a mission more and more each day. Watching people smile and seeing them happy each time we visit makes all the rainy days seem like sunny days. 

Love you all,

Elder Carlton

Fun Facts:

It rained for 10 days straight saw sunlight for the first time yesterday
I played in nasty flood water. oops
I cant seem to escape the mosquitoes at night so i wake up bitten to death
I am going to learn how to cook filipino food this next week
I eat rice for every meal mostly
I love getting letters