Monday, April 29, 2013

Short But Powerful Email

Happy Bangus Festival yall!
So it is pretty much a big fish festival here in my area. Bangus (milk fish?) is the most common fish here so they celebrate it! They have the longest fish grill in the world. It is in the Book of World Records! I havent seen it though...because of course that is not what I am here for! I am here to help others come unto Christ :) and that is what we have been doing.

Sister Stokes and I are stoked this week because we have a golden investigator. I think I told you about Bro Joven last week. He came to church this week in a white shirt and tie! He looked like an elder all he needs is the name tag! We have taught him almost every day this week. He is very excited! I will update you on his progresss next week.

We also were able to teach Mary this week. She is a less active and is very very poor. She has to work on Sundays to eat. But she came to church yesterday! She said she felt happy again . We are teaching her later tonight.

I am feeling healthy and happy!

So the elections are comming up on may 13! Elections here are fun! haha. There are cars with the canidates pictures on them that drive through the streets playing each one's theme song. Yes they have theme songs! It is getting really loud. just a little annoying during personal study but that is ok. On election day we have a 6oclok curfew.

Me and Sister Stokes are just work work working! We walk mostly everywhere and preach by the way as we go. We make babies cry....they are scared of my hair.

I love this work and I love the Phils. I love you too!!!

I cannot believe the time is going by so so fast!

Love you!

Sis Stapp
Here is a pic of Bro Charles!!!! He got baptized this week! I was'nt there but I taught him for a long time! I am so so so so happy!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Sister Power!

The first wave a 19 year olds hits Julia's mission.  Here she is at the transfer meeting!  She is training Sister Stokes (the sister with the green headband).

Monday, April 22, 2013

Hello Joe!

So basically the people here call elders from America Joe all the time. Sister Stokes and I got called Joe this week while we were proselyting this week. I guess that is the most common American name.

Anyway! how are you I am great! Thank you for your emails and stuff. I love hearing from you. I am glad your hike went well mom. And dad that beard was amazing. But I am glad you are back to your old self. I love you.

Alex and Sammie. I miss you boys and Tyler, I am happy to hear about your new bike and your awesome trick! send me a pic!

I loved the pictures you sent especially of that cute baby!!! I just wanna eat his cheeks!!

!uestion for Rachel: When are you moving to a far away place? Will you be home when I get home? If you move to FL can I come live with you and work at Disney World??

Anyway we had such a great week! Like last night during nightly planning Sister Stokes and I were just smiling from ear to ear because of the great week we had. We have 17 new investigators this week! Yesterday we went back to one of our Preach by the Ways, Sister Joann. She lives so far away!We didn't set a specific appointment with her so we were just praying so hard that she would be home. Well our prayers were answered because she was there and welcomed us with open arms. We taught her and her brother, her mother, her daughter and her nephews! They were all really receptive. I know it was an answer to our prayers. The travel to their area, which is like the furthest neighborhood in our area, was not a waste of time. For a minute I was thinking of not going there because it was so far and she probably wouldn't be there but I am glad we followed the prompting to go.

Another thing that happened yester day is we met Brother Joven! He is a referral that we received last week from a member. We tried to contact him but he was at work. Then suddenly yesterday he came to church on his own! He was there and asked us if we could come over to teach him! We taught him last night for the first time. He is so great. I know he has been prepared by the Lord. He is 17 and wants to be obedient and live a better life. He lost both of his parents already and wants to see them again. I am so excited to teach him again and to help him progress towards baptism. I felt the spirit so strong last night in the lesson. I know he felt it also. He is already reading the BoM and feels that it is true!

I am loving this area. The members are so nice and supportive. They are loving and feed us :) I feel like they are my family already. They are always looking out for us since we are two Americans walking around at night can be dangerous. They walk with us sometimes. I am so grateful for this experience and for the people I am meeting.

Grabe at y half way point ...... I have been reflecting a lot on my mission I just cannot believe that is has gone by so fast!!! I am glad I still have 9 months left. I love doing the Lord's work and feeling the spirit as I help the people come unto Christ. I love this gospel. I gave a talk in sacrament meeting yesterday about the restoration and I just am so grateful that I have a testimony of the restoration of the gospel. I thank the Lord everyday for this knowledge and I want to share it with every one for the rest of my life!

I love you all and I hope you are sharing this special message to all around you (even members) everyone needs to hear your testimonies.

Has it started raining? it rains. but mostly while we are sleeping. the big rain hasn't hit yet.
Do you have any new sisters coming this next transfer? yes lots! Not sure how many though.
Have you met lots of new people? yes! I wish i had time to tell you about each one! in 9-10 months I will
How is the branch? great! learning but great!
How is your health? good! I feel great.
I want to hear more about you apartment? Our apt is really nice. very nice compared to my old one. there are tiles. and no rats! only thing is that the water is yellow...even the filtered stuff...sooooooao pretty much we shower in fish water. But the apt is nice and I like my bed . I sleep on the top bunk
Where do you shop? we shop at an actual grocery store! I feel so spoiled in this area.
I love you all!
See ya later!!!
Sister Stapp

Monday, April 15, 2013

Flamly is Julia's Language for Family!

Hello Flamly!
I am here and I am so Hot! It is hot and sweaty here in our area. But that is ok we still work and work and work. The rain should be coming soon so they say. It rained a few times this week. One of the days I forgot my umbrella, luckily a member let me borrow her's so I didn't get soaked. Anyway I am getting to love this area. This week Sister Stokes and I were really trying to connect with the active members in our area. We went to their homes, taught them about the restoration, asked for referrals and scheduled FHEs. It is great to get to know them. They are such loving people and supportive to the missionary work also!

One member, Sister Ferrer gave us a referral. She referred her neighbor Sister Imelda. So the other day we went to contact Sister Imelda. Sister Ferrer came with us to fellowship and to help teach. Sister Imelda was very receptive and she agreed to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. She also agreed and was interested in more visits! Sister Ferrer bore a powerful testimony at the end that touched the heart of Sister Imelda. Sister Imelda was able to feel how important the gospel is for Sister Ferrer. After the lesson Sister Ferrer was so happy she kept saying "I felt the spirit so strong." I told her, "So did I!" Sister Ferrer said she is going to do all she can to help Sister Imelda progress and come to church. Sister Ferrer has definitely "caught the wave" of missionary work. It makes me so happy when members are involved. They are the key to this great work.

This week we were able to watch conference! We traveled to Lingayen by bus to watch at the stake center. On Saturday it was pretty much just the missionaries and a few members there. Which was sort of sad. I felt sad about all the great talks the members are missing. But there was a full house on Sunday morning! yay!

Conference was so great. Sister Stokes and I had been counting down the days like it's Christmas or something. haha! We loved all the talks. I noticed a theme of "Family" with a lot of the talks. Family is so so so important. We had a lesson with a less active member about family the last night. she works in Manila and is only home on the weekends. She has a 16 year old boy and a 2 year old boy. She hates being away from them but in order to make ends meet she needs to work. Her husband just got a job working in another country. Right now she shared with us that her husband and she are deciding whether to transfer their kids to Manila to be with mom or leave the little one with a cousin while the 16 year old stays home to finish school. We shared with her the importance of togetherness in the family especially while the kids are young. She is setting the main example to her children and they need to see it. I know she wants her family to be together and I know she felt the spirit. She knows what she needs to do as a mother and that is be there physically and spiritually for her children. I love families and I am so grateful for mine!

I am doing well here and still loving every minute. I cannot believe I am almost half way through. It is going by way too fast! Stop!!!! Coming up on my half way has made me reflect a lot on how far I have come and what I still need to work harder on. I am eternally grateful for this opportunity to serve the Lord in His work, especially at this time where the work is moving foreword so quickly. I cannot express to you how much I love this gospel. I do love it so much. I know that this church is true.

I will apologize because I have no pics this week. I left my sd cards on my desk. I hope you will forgive me :)

Fun fact: I got pooped on by a bird yesterday while proselyting not fun. Also we travel mostly by walking. they have beef here but It is rare. I eat with my hands sometimes.
I love you all so so much! ask questions if you want!
Sister Stapp

thanks mommy for the email!!
I love to hear about life. I loved your conference notes:)
I also loved conference! Those men are inspired and called of god for sure.
Good to hear everyone is getting engaged :)
I got dearelders this week from Kelly Lee and Aunt Cindy. Tell those ladies I love them so much and thank you for the letters. I will write back soon!
I also got a letter from my dear friend Lizzy Gruber.
Can you tell her that I got it and that I love and miss her!
Kara. I Love you!!!
Savannah: I got your JB card! Love it!!!! I love you!!!
I feel like I need to handwrite all these people because I never have enough time on the comp. to send them a good note on here. anyways I love you mommy and daddy and alex and sammy!!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Kumusta po kayong lahat!

An dito pa rin ako sa pilipinas! sobrang saya ako :)

I am so happy to be here in my new area of Manat B. it is challenging opening an area, but it is also a very good experience. Sister Stokes and I are finding lots of new investigators and looking for LAs everyday. It is very very hot here! I am sweating more than I ever have in my life. But they say the rainy season is coming soon, so hopefully it will cool off soon.
So this week basically what we are doing is  trying to get familiar with our area. We went all the way out to the furthest neighbourhood which is really far. This neighborhood is basically all water. the peole live on little man made islands or houses on stilts. so we had to take a boat! It was so beautiful and stinky. We contacted a less active member out there named Mercedes. She is very very old! She is the house keeper of a house and her boss won't let her come to church :(   So so sad but we told her that we love her and miss her.
Out doing the Lord's Work!

This week was really great fast Sunday. all the youth in our stake had youth conference this week and bore their testimonies in sacrament about it. the youth conference emphasized serving missions and temple marriage. All the young men in our branch are inspired and have gained a greater desire to serve. We visited a family last night the castillio family who are semi active. Their son came home from the conference and said "Mom, I'm going on a mission next year" the mother was so so happy. She has been praying that her son would gain a desire to serve and now he has! he is starting to prepare and will be working with us soon.

This week was fiesta! All the neighborhoods are having fiestas which is like their celebration of summer. So we were going to visit a member on fiesta night but he wasn't there, so his neighbor said "Just come in here and eat!" We can't turn food down so of course we went in! They were so so nice they served us rice, shrimp, tilapia, and veggies. So so good. I think Sis Stokes was a little scared because the only part of the fish they served was the head. haha! Delicious though!

We ended up teaching one of the sisters there about the restoration. She is very interested. She was asking questions and wants to learn more. She is not from our area so we will refer her to the elders. I am just so grateful for the spirit, because of the spirit we were able to meet this family and teach this sister who wants to know the truth. We are being led by the spirit every day as we teach.

We saw a monkey! yay! He was someones pet I think...out side of a restaurant....maybe he is dinner.

Other good news one of our investigators came to church! Yes Bro. Samuel. We met him the other day and before we started teaching he told us he would come and he did :) Very happy for him. He was an investigator years ago but the missionaries left and never came back to him. He is happy that we are teaching him again and is starting to read the BoM again.

Great things are happening in Manat B! We are praying for guidance and for patience.

Sister Stokes and I love missionary work so much and we are so happy that we are members of this true church. I know it is true. I cannot wait for conference this weekend! I know Thomas S. Monson is a true prophet!

I love you all!

Sister Stapp

More INFO:
We go to church in Binmaley! We live in Binmaley, in Barangay Naguilayan.
Sis stokes is great!!! She is working hard and is not as homesick as I was. She is dilligent and humble  and she worked at disneyworld. We bond over the gospel and Disney. Our house is really nice and I will send a pic next week. Love you !!!!! I love all your pics keep sending please. I can't wait to read your conference notes!