Elder Luke Roberts

Elder Luke  Roberts

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Cow Intestine Soup, not too bad

This week our zone leaders flew in to do exchanges with us. They loved it here and had a hard time leaving. It was cool to see them! They said their mission is now complete because they can say they have been to Coron.
One is from Logan and the other from Phoenix.  Great guys!  So some pretty big news around here is that we get to move into the old senior couples house this week!!  It has a flushing toilet and even a shower!  We're lucky because it has a little couch too!  Big upgrade!
We didn't have all of our usual investigators at church yesterday but we did have lots of our less actives come! Which for us is gold. Even though the church is 4 years old here there are lots of people who are less active. Usually they are just waiting for someone to tell them they love them and remind them what the spirit feels like and then they come back. It has been a focus for us to really strengthen the branch so we were happy to see so many people coming back! 

Elder Tarzan

Also our investigator Dane came to church with Dexter and really enjoyed it!! He likes how our church is a lot more interactive than others. He is used to a pastor speaking to him for hours then going home. Also he really feels the spirit of the sacrament. He is really doing well! And Dexter as well! We are so proud of him for staying out of trouble. 
The Dizons are doing really really well! The mom is in Alma 12 and might finish the whole book before her baptism,
And the dad is in 2 Nephi and he says when he reads his urge to smoke isn't nearly as strong!! So that's been amazing to see... We are proud of him and the whole family!! 

Porter would be so proud of me


The Camachos are going great! We just need to get them married then they are good to go. They have strong testimonies. This is the family I sent a picture of last week I think. 
My companion made cow intestine soup this week for lunch. That was interesting haha.  Not my favorite but not terrible. The stingray was really good and also very bony because of all the pieces of the spine. Life is good here and we continue to meet lots of people. It's hard sometimes to tell who is really interested and who is being polite. But things are going well.                                                                                                                                                                            

Kid Fun

We taught a lesson yesterday to a man who told us at the very beginning that he was a devout catholic... So he told us he just wanted to be entertained and would listen to our message. He didn't really listen but he felt inclined to tell us that we were dirty with original sin and other things. But we left a pamphlet and bore our testimonies and he said we could come back. He is very old. But he needs our message and we will see how it goes next time.
Sister Dacullia,  the principal we are teaching, knows everything about our church, and know's it is true. Even our history with Polygamy and has no problem with any of our message. She just feels like she owes the Virgin Mary for helping her marriage take place and she also owes Saint Raphael (who I have no clue who that is). So we felt prompted to do a whole lesson just on Mother Mary. Letting her know how holy of a woman she is. And how she is even in the Book of Mormon. We will transition that into telling her that we don't worship anyone else but God, and he gives us blessings, even though the saints she has worshipped lived amazing lives and we can learn a lot from them. 
She is a lot older than us but really respects us and opened up to us. Her husband who passed away was also very Catholic. But she has made it to church before and I know she will come around.   
We did some beach clean up for service this week and that was really fun! We also went around and set up signs for vaccinations. The church provides lots of services here!! 

Thanks for your love and prayers, Elder Roberts

Monday, September 21, 2015

A Week Full of Surprises

This week has been full of surprises. So many in fact that they are no longer surprising to me. The week started off with us going to the Dizon family to teach them a lesson. An old man came around the corner. He was missing an eye and limping. The family gathered around and told us that he needed our help. We didn't know what they were talking about until the old man lifted up his foot. It was infected from Bamboo slivers deep into the bottom of his foot. I could barely even look at it... They said they wanted us to help him haha. And of course we can. So they brought us some tweezers and a little knife and some gin. We poured the gin on the man's foot to clean it and then got to work. I didn't think I would be able to handle it. But somehow I made it through. They got a light hooked up to an old motorcycle battery so we could see. They were all gathered around to watch us and see how it went. It was pouring rain outside. It was just one of those moments you just can't forget. I think we made it better but it still didn't look great haha.  But he was really grateful. He lives in Busanga.  Really far away so we can't teach him but he definitely won't forget who the missionaries are and maybe someday he will be able to hear more of our message. 
Old roots and huts
Also this week one of our investigators told us (the Dizon's oldest daughter) that she had an assignment in her Catholic school. It was English class and she had to make sentences using the words that were given. One of the words was prophet. She wrote "We have a living Prophet today and his name is Thomas S. Monson". The teacher marked it wrong... So she said no it's right I'll show you. She took her teacher on LDS.org and taught her all about the Prophet. The teacher then took the paper and marked it right. 

My own Filipino Trevor

Also this week when we went to teach Dexter and we couldn't find him. His neighbors told us to look up. He was at the top of a 60 foot palm tree collecting coconuts. I was nervous and I wasn't even up there! He got a little more than a US dollar, for about 2 hours of working in that Palm tree. Each tree has many coconuts on this kind of Palm tree. He didn't come to church yesterday but is staying out of trouble. So we will go teach him tomorrow. 
Huts in the jungle

We met a new investigator this week. He is 21. When I asked him to read the assignment in Moroni, he asked me if I would like him to write an essay on it... I said that wont be necessary but write down questions if you have any. He is very willing to learn and is awesome! 
Great Family, cutest kids

So the Cabanes family came to church this week!!!! It just wasn't OUR church.  Soooo we saw them drive by our church on the way to their old one... Their Pastor comes by every week to get them so they are finding it hard. But they will have to make a decision soon. 
So you asked about the spider pic in last week's email.  Yeah the spider fights are huge here. The kids love to go find them, then fight them haha.
We saw the biggest fruit bat yesterday!! They are huge!! I'm used to seeing bats in southern Utah and stuff but this was the size of an owl. Could easily carry away a child. Good thing they like fruit. 
If the dumb band wasn't here, you would see that they are doing the Plan of Salvation puzzle I brought!

The days go by slow, but the weeks go by fast.  I love you all.
Love Elder Roberts

Monday, September 14, 2015

Primary Sharing Time Fun

Yesterday we had most our investigators come to church!! It was awesome! And I was walking down the hall I heard Elder ROBERTS! We need you to be in charge of sharing time today in Primary haha.  It was so much fun! The kids love seeing me up there teaching and singing and we all had a great time! There are lots of kids haha.  They are such great friends and love to sing together!
Bro. Co, a recent convert
This morning we were able to purchase stingray at the market for our lunch tomorrow so I'm excited to try that! Along with rice of course we eat a lot of veggies and eggs and fish mostly. But also pork sometimes too. Also I'm learning some great Filipino dishes. 
Oh yeah and this random lady came to church yesterday. I guess she told my companion that I had taught her. She said oh Elder Roberts taught me. I was sitting down and she said ya Elder Roberts taught me haha. I don't even know who she is but we are definately going to teach her this week! I guess it was somebody I met on an exchange but I can't remember her at all.
"Spider Fights" at a members house.  Yes, that is a large spider.
The Cabanes family is still doing well but every Sunday their Pastor comes to get them for church. But they said they know the Book of Mormon to be the word of God and so apparently they will be coming to church next week! But we will definately wait and see. They said they would obey the word of wisdom but yet,  going to church seems like Mt. Everest haha.  They are very busy and they know our message is true.
One of the boarders that lives there who joined us in a lesson said that he prayed about the Book of Mormon and felt something descend on his back... and peace filled his chest that was warm. He said he has been going to his church for a while and has said prayers before but never before felt an answer like that! He also has a wife and a 1 year old son who turns 2 on November 8. Same day as Spencer!! Exact same age! 
The weather has been very wet but it's nice. Oh yeah and while I was teaching a lesson I broke through the bamboo floor on one side of my chair. We were at an investigators house who lives over the sea in a hut.  And it just snapped and I fell over hahaha.   I'm just glad I didn't break through all the way into the ocean haha.  They are a very sweet family and we are teaching them again tonight. I guess I'm a little bigger than your average Filipino haha.
Again, don't know what this band thing is, but sorry.  This is the foursome before Elder Franciso left.
So at this last transfer, Elder Francisco got transferred (Elder Cooper's companion) and we got a new Filipino Elder who is super cool.  And now my companion is the new District Leader.  He is awesome and we get along great.  The chemistry of the four of us is really good.  We have lots of fun and we laugh and tell stories but we are all very obedient.  We tell stories of things that have happened throughout the day, because everyday there are stories and adventures.  We are preparing people for the temple and they just can't wait!  Life is good here.  Lots of rain on and off.  I know that the Book of Mormon is true.  And testifies of Jesus Christ, who is our Savior, and Brother.
Love, Elder Roberts

Monday, September 7, 2015

1st Transfer, and I'm staying!

This week has been super hot. But it rains in the afternoon a lot which is nice if we are studying, but not so nice if we are out working of course. 

See what I mean? 
This week while we were walking around I felt like we needed to go talk to this guy on his motorcycle. He was just sitting there with his young daughter. As we were talking with him he asked us if we knew Elder Teh. Elder Teh is in the first Quorum of the Seventy and from the Philippines! So we said how do you know him?!? Turns out one of his foundations helped them in Manila. An LDS volunteer doctor or something  helped provide medical care necessary for his daughters birth. He was extremely open to us coming and teaching him! So we went over to his house, in a little hidden area we didn't even know existed. We saw another church next door to his house. So we went in to go teach him and it turns out he is the pastor of that church haha.  But he loved our message and both he and his wife want to learn even more. They are very humble and nice! Service really helps prepare people to hear our message. He knows his Bible really well and has a great testimony of Jesus Christ. I know he will enjoy the Book of Mormon.
Another after rain shot.  Why do we teach everyone that lives on the top of the mountain?

Our Branch President moved this week into a home right next to Palawan State University. He used to have an apartment below ours.  They have a little restaurant on the side of their house and it was full of college students! So we talked to them all and invited them all to English class! We decided to show Meet The Mormons at the restaurant next week. Lots of students eat there because it's right in the gate of their school! And President Neopuncino (our branch president) has gotten lots of students excited about the Book of Mormon and stuff like that. So we are really excited to go and teach everybody!! It's an amazing opportunity for us!

Palawan State University Coron
Palawan State University, they do love their basketball
Can you spy the 3 huts?

This week during our exchange we were teaching a lesson in a boarding house type hut. I don't know how to describe it. But the lady we were teaching is a former Muslim, and another boarder we taught is gay. Both very receptive to our message and read from the Book of Mormon. It just goes to show Heavenly Father is preparing everyone to hear the gospel. It's a good thing we don't get to decide if somebody is ready for our message or not. Because we have no idea. We have to let Heavenly Father show us who is ready because he knows, he will show us. We don't have to guess. Just follow the spirit. 

In the Dizon family, they have a cousin staying with them. His name is Roger. He is a college student and told us he is too busy to read the Book of Mormon. We promised him that if he read from the Book of Mormon before he studies he would do better and remember more. Next time we came, we found him reading it. Now he always reads and is growing a strong testimony.   
Life is great here!! It's been tough this week though physically. Lots and lots of walking haha.  But I love it and things are going really really well!  There is a kid here that reminds me of Trevor! He comes with us to a lot of appointments.   He loves the missionaries and he reminds of me of a Filipino Trevor. 

Today was a transfer day and I found out I'm staying here so that's amazing!! This is what they call the dream area. Coron.  Very few missionaries, very few get to come here and it's the best area. I love it here and I'm working hard.  So proud of the family! Sounds like everything is great!!
Love Elder Roberts