Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Saddest Thing

Ashley Mecham

Apr 20 (8 days ago)

to me, Amanda, Austin, Elizabeth, Liza, Jamie, Kendra, Lindsey, Patrick, D, Ryan
It's a good thing that things I don't like always happen on Tuesdays so that I have almost a whole week to think about it before I email you about it! 

Last Tuesday we had interviews with President Stucki. I was SO EXCITED because I knew he would tell me I'm training. I really had no doubt. Then, we talk about some things. Then he says, "You know, Sister Mecham, it's always been my plan for you to train these last two transfers. But the Lord has a different plan for you. The Lord has called you to serve as a Sister Trainer Leader... again." My first thoughts were: NOOOOOOOOO. Then he noticed the little tears welling up in my eyeballs. "How do you feel about that, Sister Mecham?" "President, I was really hoping to train." "I know, I wanted you to, too. But that's not God's plan." Bam. And with that, I can't say it's not right. Even though this whole week I've been murmuring a little. But really, I'm over it. I'm called to serve as a missionary and my Father in Heaven will use me here how He wants me to be used. I'm just a tool, I know.

Other than that, this week was great! I got stomach flu, but that only kept me indoors for a bit. I didn't tell anyone so no one could force me to stay inside! Don't worry, I'll rest when I'm dead. 

Oh yeah, HOLY WEEK. Holy Week is crazy here. They close EVERYTHING on Friday. But everything is open again on Easter Sunday. It's a little backwards. But on Friday that have Procession which is a huge parade thing in the evening where every Catholic in Paranaque (which is many) follows around statues as they are paraded around town. It backs up traffic, but no one seems to mind. 

This week was awesome. I realized again the reality of the Spirit. Things come out of my mouth that seem a little unusual to me, but it really helps people. It's crazy. Not because of me, but because of the Spirit. It's because God loves the people we're trying to help.

UPDATE: What president stucki told me was confidential... But our district leader just texted and said no one is transferring. Hm! I'll let you know next week what actually happened to us! 
nang pagmamahal,
Sister Mecham

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The good things!

Ashley Mecham

Apr 13 (3 days ago)

to me, Amanda, Austin, Elizabeth, Liza, Jamie, Kendra, Lindsey, Patrick, D, Ryan
This week was hard but ended wondrously.

Let's start with the hard. Remember that family I told you about? The Roluna family? Who were, like, super golden? This week we came to them I they said they were really grateful for us for helping them strengthen their faith. Because their faith was getting so strong, they are thinking about returning to their old religion - Iglesia Ni Cristo. NO! WRONG! They weren't sure yet, just thinking about it. So I was very stressed by this because I knew that God had prepared them but Satan was tempting them to take the easy way out. So this whole week, I was not a very happy camper. I don't know why, but I let it really stress me out. But, with much help from the Lord, we found the perfect member to bring to their home to fellowship them. But it's hard because this member lives far and it busy. But, we scheduled it for yesterday. But then he called last minute and said he needs to change the time! We will go earlier! But, I was super stressed because I knew they usually aren't home at that time. But it was his only time. So, for a long while, that was all that was in my prayers. When we met up with Brother Sanchez (the member), he had a huge smile. He says, "Don't worry, Sister Mecham. I know that they will be there because I prayed about it before I left my home." (Small background about Brother Sanchez: he and his family were baptized last December only and they are super super strong young family.) How did he know I was worried? Because he's in tune with the Spirit. So, we get to their home. Brother Roluna is home. I don't see his wife, though. We can't teach him without his wife we need a third babae! My faith was weak. I ask him where his wife is. BOOM! She just pops out from the kitchen covered in sweat! She had just barely got home from a faraway trip like one minute ago! I am surprised. I look at Brother Sanchez. He's not surprised. What faith! So, I repented from my lack of faith. I will redouble my faith the next time. We taught them a wonderful lesson and they promised to continue coming to church (they missed two weeks) and really praying and reading to find out if it's true. So, I'm happier than ever - My Father in Heaven threw me a bone because He loves me. But even more than that, because He loves the Roluna family!

There's another weird story. One day we OYM an older woman in a duster. We set a return appointment. We return the next day. A man comes out and says the woman from yesterday is busy. He says she won't be busy tomorrow. We return the next day. The man comes out and says HE is just about to leave so we can't teach him. We were confused because we thought we were there to teach the woman... but we set a new return appointment. Then, later that day, like five hours later, we were walking in that same area when I hear, "MAYHEM, MAYHEM!!!!!!!!" I thought, 'it sounds like someone is trying to call my name but butchering it..." I ignored it. Then we saw a few people and started talking with them. In the middle of our conversation, the same man from earlier appears at my side. "Come teach me now." "Uhhh what?" "NOW!" Then he runs off back toward his house. Sister Jensen and I looked at each other tentatively... He really doesn't seem crazy. So we go. The woman is there, too. But we had the weirdest lesson of my life. He would not allow sister Jensen to try to speak Tagalog. Only english. Luckily, I was allowed to speak Tagalog. But I can't really explain to you how weird he was. In the middle of my teaching, he looks at me, and in complete politeness says, "You, stop teaching." Then turns to Sister Jensen, "You teach." But not like angrily... More like we were his puppets. It was strange. Long story short, he agreed to prepare to be baptized so I'll let you know how that goes.

Sister Jensen got chased by two very large rats in a tiny alley way. It was hilarious. 

Oh man, I was hoping to talk to you about how awesome conference was! But maybe next week because I got carried away with weird stories that I know cannot be fully appreciated in writing. 

I love you and I love being a missionary and I will find out this week if I'll be training for my last two transfers! Pray for me!!

Sister Mecham

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Mata't Utak


Ashley Mecham

10:01 PM (18 hours ago)

to me, Amanda, Austin, Elizabeth, Liza, Jamie, Kendra, Lindsey, Patrick, D, Ryan
Yesterday I ate the head of a chicken. Including the brain. And the eyes. It was not very good but they really love it here. It's a texture thing. All I have left to eat are the intestines and the feet and I've pretty much eaten a whole chicken!
Corazon is going to do baptisms for the dead on Friday!

We ate dinner at the Godito family's home on Thursday. Brother Godito is a chef and a good one. He cooked us backed tomato basil macaroni with real mozzarella cheese. It was heaven. Then we had a real long conversation about food and I felt like I was talking with Eliza Young about the food channel. It was delicious.

There was on ox cart parked outside our apartment for a while. They were selling baskets.

We got to watch the women's meeting on Saturday! It was awesome! We'll be watching conference this Saturday and Sunday. But I'm downloading it right now for a sneak peak:)

This week we had a great lesson with our punk investigator named Hideki. He's come to church for 9 times now and is finally super excited to be baptized! Before he wanted to, but he wasn't dying with joy and excitement like he should be. Now, he just can't wait and we're so excited for the 26th!

That's all the things for this week. Still lovin' you all! The office lady emailed me again and threatened that I won't be able to go home if I don't send in the form she needs! Little does she know, that's not a threat... but a temptation! Hah! I'm funny. Okay. Have a great week!

Sister Mecham

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Binyag ni Corazon!


Ashley Mecham

9:56 PM (20 hours ago)

to me, Amanda, Austin, Elizabeth, Liza, Jamie, Kendra, Lindsey, Patrick, D, Ryan
This was a nice week. 

We met a woman who is Indian named Kamlu. She grew up here but her tagalog is choppy. So she asked us to teach her in English. Sister Jensen is happy. I feel like I sound silly in English. But it's okay.

Then we had a really awesome specialized teaching training seminar by President Stucki and it was awesome! I learned so much and it's so fun to improve my teaching skills every day!

Then, on Saturday,  CORAZON MILLENA WAS BAPTIZED. It was happy all around. At first, she told me she didn't want to bear her testimony after. So I told the ward mission leader so she wouldn't feel awkward. But, of course, philipinos are like this: Our bishop forced her to do it. Which turned out great! She only didn't want to because she didn't want to cry in front of everyone. But she totally did cry and it was actually really great and I'm so blessed to be a part of her life.

Before that, we had this really great lesson with this family, the Roluna family, that we just found last week. They're very poor but they are very rich with the spirit. They are very religious but they we excommunicated from Iglesia ni Cristo so they have no religion right now. Anyway, we taught them the plan of salvation and their faces were awesome as we explained it. They had tons of great questions. The dad, Roberto, bore testimony that he knew it was true and was so grateful that we taught it to him so they know that it's not enough just to be good people, but we have to find the true church, with the true authority to baptize, so we can follow the Gospel of Jesus Christ and go to the Celestial kingdom. Their understanding of the plan of salvation blew my mind. Then they committed to come to church. So we got up earlier than usual and went to the church earlier than usual because we really wanted to be there when they got there. We were half an hour early (which is way early because church usually starts a half an hour late). When we got there, one member of the bishopric was there (and no one else) and he said, "You have visitors." We ran inside and there they all were! Sitting on the front row! They had been there for a half an hour already! I asked them why they were so early and they just said, "we didn't want to be late!" They're so cute and I'm so excited for their progress as a family.

So that is that. I'm so happy. I love being a missionary. They're making me fill out a form for coming home. If I don't fill it out, I can't come home. Tempting?

Love you all!