Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Letters sent home from the Phillippines

Elder Nielsen

Elder Nielsen

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Yellow Belly Lizards!

We had another great week last week. Elder Peterson and I starting to see some progression in our area. Our constant finding efforts are starting to pay off. Yesterday in church, we had six investigators attend. One of them is named Sister Tin Tin. She is a physiologist that we recently started teaching. She has been reading the Book of Mormon and has many sincere questions. She wants to learn and know the truth. We have only taught her twice, so we are exited to continue to teach her and help her and her family come unto Christ. 

Miracles are happening everyday in our area. Last week, while walking down the street we had a women approach us and say that she is a less active member and has not been to church in months. We were able to teach her and her family that day. After the lesson, she referred her mother and family, who lived nearby, to us. We have set a return appointment with their family tomorrow. 

Last week was very busy. I woke up at 5:30 every morning to finish those stinkin essays. I felt like I lost all my English writing skills that I use to have. I have not used big English words in years!

I do not have a lot of time, but we had some cool experiences this week! 

Yesterday we found this monitor lizard on the street! It was huge! It not quite like the blue-belly lizards that we have back home ;) 

Overall, another fantastic week! There are lots of changes that have happened in the missionary world worldwide! I will explain more about that next week! 

Love ya all!

mahal ko po kayo,

Elder Nielsen 

Monday, January 23, 2017

Take 2: "Climbing in the Rain..."

We had another great week last week. Elder Perterson and I focused last week on finding "the elect". After reviewing our week, we believe we accomplished our goal. The first two elect sisters that we found last week was Sister Christine and Sister Chat. Sister Christine was a person that we OYMed two weeks ago. She told us that her best friend while growing up was a Mormon. She told us that she attended church many times with her best friend. She agreed to listen to our message, but she was just about to leave, so she invited us to come back a week later when she would be home again. We returned the following week, but she was not home. We stopped by her house again yesterday, and she was home. We were then able to share the message of the Restoration to them. It was a wonderful lesson. They asked many questions during the discussion, and at the end of the lesson, they committed to read and pray about the Book of Mormon.  

The third elect sister that we found is Sister Ronna. Sister Ronna was also someone we talked to while OYMing. She also allowed us to teach her the message of the Restoration. She told us that she has seen many missionaries before, and has always wondered what they were doing. She said, that this was the first time that she was able to talk with them. We also had a good lesson one discussion with her. And yesterday, Sister Ronna attended church. We know that the Lord is placing prepared sons and daughters in our paths. 

Our less active finding has also been very successful. Elder Peterson and I have found many less active families in our area. We have been teaching them and have been trying to gain their trust. We also have been working with the ward trying to assign home and visiting teacher to those newly found or moved in less actives. 

Today, we had a cool district meeting activity. We made distinct t-shirts and made waffle ice cream desert thingies. (Waffles, with ice cream on top, with many different kinds of toppings) Then we made spray paint district shirts. They turned out really cool! I will send pictures next week, my card reader is not working! 

A fun story. So last night, we had just finished teaching a lesson and we were heading home. It was starting to rain pretty hard and it was getting close to curfew. But there were NO tricycles that were going to our subdivision. We waited and waited. Nothing. We decided to get on another tricycle that would take us to the subdivision right next to ours. Our plan was to just walk through this little gate area that connected the two subdivision. We arrived there, soaking wet, and the gate was LOCKED. We had two options: 1. walk alllll the way around the huge subdivision and get home at like 10:30 or 2. we could jump the huge fence. We chose the second option. Just imagine two white missionaries jumping a 15 foot gate/fence that had sharp points on top, with a little bob wire and broken glass bits (to keep people from jumping over it) at 9:20 at night in the pouring rain. We were trying to be super quite so nobody would see us. It was pretty sctechy.. But luckily, we were both experience fence climbers and were able to manage despite the slippery surface. It was quite the experience. If I ever get thrown in prison at least I know my fence jumping skills are adequate. 

Other than that, it has been another pretty normal week. Good old missionary work!
Enjoy the weather! It is getting even hotter over here. The hot season is coming up... But you gotta love it!

Have a great week! Love you all!


Elder Nielsen 

Sunday, January 15, 2017

"Just go to Church!"

We had another great week last week. Elder Perterson and I believe and feel that our area is slowing starting to progress. In our area, we have a large teaching pool, with many new investigators, but none of our investigators have come to church yet.The last two weeks we have had 0 investigators in church. Last week, Elder Peterson and I really focused on getting our investigators to church. Our focus paid off because yesterday we had two investigators at church, Sister Rafunzel and Sister Marry. Sister Rafunzel is the sister of two recent converts in our area. Her and her brother are the only siblings that are not yet members. We focused on her last week and invented her to come church on Sunday, and she came. That was the first time she has attended. Sister Mary is also a part-member mother that we met last week in a computer shop. A complete miracle!  She told us that she was living with some active members in our area. She also told us that her children and grandmother who are living in their province are also members of our church. We were able to teach Sister Mary last week with her active member cousins. We invited her to come to church on Sunday, and she promised that she would. Yesterday she attended church for the first time. 

The Lehi district is doing very well. I am very impressed with all the missionaries in our district. Last week, every companionship in our district had over 40 lessons, and two companionships had over 50 lessons. I hate to brag, but I believe we have the best district in the mission right now! ;)

Sister Maputi and Sister Seuifalemua are doing very well. They get along very well with each other and they seem to be very close. They are working hard and have a decent amount of progressing investigators. They have an upcoming baptism on the 28th of January. 

Sister Zamoras and Sister Sheets are also working hard together. Sister Sheets already feels comfortable in their area, and has led a few exchanges in their area. They have an investigator family that will be baptized in the first week of February. 

Elder Vinas and Elder Price are doing well. They are working hard, however, they have a very low number of investigators that are attending church. They told me that they are starting to work through the members and are asking for more referrals. I also believe they could do a little more finding, especially in the areas right next to the chapel.  

 The Lehi district is doing very well. 

We had a great week last week. Elder Peterson loves to work hard and push himself. So we have been working full time these last few weeks. We have been working from 12:00 - 9:30pm almost everyday. We have been sacrificing eating just to have more time to teach! Which is a big sacrifice for us! ;) It is a good thing we can buy quick, cheap street food to get us through! I have thoroughly enjoyed my last three weeks here in this area and with my companion!

Sorry I can't think of any good stories this week! Maybe next week! Keep up the missionary work Fam! Missionaries pray for fellowshipping families like you! It is awesome hearing your experiences! Have a great week! I love you alll! I love being a missionary!


Elder Nielsen

Ps. Watch "On the Lord's Time" for family home evening! It is a documentary about President Thomas S. Monson. It is powerful!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Starting from Scratch

The ZOO!

This is just a little sample of the pictures. It was by far the biggest zoo that I have ever been to. The tigers were the two tigers that kept trying to attack us. 

We had another great week last week. Though our week did not quite turn out like we had planned, we still witnessed many miracles in our area. Last week, we really focused on finding and teaching investigators. Currently, we do not have any investigators that are truly working towards baptism, so we focused on finding instigator families that live near active members. Our prayers were answered because we were able to find few investigator families that live very close to active members. However, our prayers were truly answered in ways that we were not expecting nor anticipating. Our Father in Heaven answered our prayers by sending less-active/part-families to us. 

The first less-active/part-member family that found us was the Castillo family. We met Sister Castillio last week while we were ironically searching for less-actives from the CMIS list. At some point Elder Peterson and I took a wrong turn and ended up on a block that we were not planning to be on. We stopped at a few houses and asked if they knew the family that we were searching for, but they all said that they did not recognize the family's name. Then we noticed a women standing on the other side of the street. She smiled at us, and asked who we were looking for. We explained that we were looking for members of our church, to which she replied that she was also a member of our church. We introduced ourselves and got to know her a little better. She said, that she and her husband were members and they used to go church in their province. But, she said, that when they moved to Montalban they did not know where the chapel was located and they were too shy to go to church because they did not know anyone in the ward. We were able to teach Sister Castillo on that day, and we were able to come back and teach Brother Castillio last Saturday. Later tonight, we have a return appointment to come and teach their whole family, including their three children that are not yet members.

The second less-active/part-member family we met was at church yesterday. This family also found us. Sister Belen and her two daughters, Grace and Jasmine, attended church yesterday. It was the first time they have attended church since they moved to Montalban last May. They told us they felt like they needed to start attending church again. We were able to get their address and visit them last night. We taught their whole family of 6. Including their non-member father. We had a very powerful lesson with them, and they invited us to come back on Wednesday and teach them again. 

I know in the Lord's work there are no "wrong turns" or coincidences. Everything is carefully planned out and guided by our loving Father in Heaven. I know that he will lead us to them or he will lead them to us. 

Another cool story. Last Friday we had to go to the mission of office because Elder Peterson had a skype call with one of the doctors from the MTC. For some reason we both thought it was at the Mission Home because that is where Elder Peterson did it last time. So we went to the mission home at 10:00 am. (His appointment was at 10:30) President was meeting with a missionary in his office so we were just waiting and talking to Sister Bertin. But, fo some reason something just seemed a little off. So we were prompted to reread the text that Elder Peterson received, and it turns out that we had to go to Mission OFFICE. Which was about a 30-60 minute jeepney ride away! So we thought Oh NOO! We told Sister Bertin that we were in the wrong place and we all jump into her car and she dropped us at the nearest jeepney place. We literally jumped on a jeepney that was heading out right when we got there. We made killer time and got there in 20 minutes. WE were able to coordinate on the phone with office Elders to get everything set up. So we ran in the Mission Office at 10:25. And he was able to start his skype appointment right on time. If he would've been late he would have missed his appointment. So it was a miracle that we were both prompted to reread the test and that we were able to get to the mission office in such short time. It was kinda cool!

Thanks for everything Fam!!! Have a wonderful week! Love you all lots! 

Mahal ko Kayo,

Elder Nielsen 

P.S. This is a nice little letter that President sent me last week. 
I am happy that you are settling in your new area and assignment. This sound to be going well with Elder Peterson. As you start using various proselyting approaches, remember to casually explain them to the Zone Leaders and other missionaries. Always think about teaching the others new approaches, tricks, methods and doctrine. Thanks for working to lift where you stand. P. Bertin

Monday, January 2, 2017

2K 17

Hello Fam! 

We had another great week last week. Elder Peterson is doing great a job leading the area. He has already introduced me to most  of the active members and less actives members in our area. I am slowly but surely starting to learn and familiarize myself with our area. Our area is composed of five main subdivisions. Most of the people living in our area are in the middle to upper class of the economic social system. I have never had an area with subdivisions before. I have usually served in poorer areas. So I am excited for the new challenge!  Another major benefit of this area is the fact that all the subdivisions has some sort of house numbering system, meaning almost every house has a house number on it. This has made searching and finding inactive members a whole easier for us. 

Last week Elder Peterson and I sat down and discussed all the investigators in our teaching pool. Elder Peterson said that we have many investigators in our teaching pool, but many of them have not gone to church yet and are not progressing. We did not having any really progressing investigators, so we are pretty much starting from scratch. So together we picked a few families and individuals that we wanted to focus on during the this transfer. We believe and know that this are has a lot of potential to progress and be a high baptizing area. 

Elder Peterson is a great missionary. He is from South Jordan, Utah. He has been out on his mission for about 5 months. He is a super nice down to earth kid. I really admire his humbleness and his desire to learn and improve. Elder Peterson wants to be obedient and do the right the thing. I am glad I have the opportunity to be companions with him! 

For our New Year we just hung out and ate food and watched the thousands of fireworks. It was very lad back and relaxing. It was a very nice New Year! 

On Sunday we got fed 4 times... We were SOO full. The Filipinos always make tons of food for New Years ( it is their biggest holiday here). So yesterday we just getting fed, and fed, and fed. I have eaten in about 24 hours because I have just been so full.. haha 

And today we went to the famous Avilon Zoo. Because it was a holiday they had a super cheap discount so our whole zone went.  It was HUGE! It was a lot of fun.They had soo many cool animals. I have a lot of cool pictures. We got to feed and touch the Giraffes. The tigers were the best. They were charging at us and growling at us, and doing fake attacks on us. It was suuuper fun. Chelsea you would gave been jealous. This zoo was legit. I will send pictures next week.

Overall another great week! Have a great week! And a great 2017!

Mahal ko po kayo,

Elder Nielsen