Come Follow Me

Come Follow Me
"And he saith unto them, "Come and follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." (Matt. 4:19) As the New Year begins, we, the members of the Willow Wood Ward, invite you to Come and Follow Him!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Elder Dallin Tracy

January 19, 2015 at 1:18:50 AM

 hahaha sorry about the story we were short on time and you know that my English is just getting worse and worse everyday so if I'm rushed its like a 6 yr old haha but Wow This week has been so amazing! to start the pope is here in the Philippines so everyone is going crazy! and another typhoon came through it turn up to Manila though so no problems here.
Did you get any of the packages yet- I think one might have came but I'm not sure, the zone leader just said they have something for me. 
Gabriel- doing great, hes still growing after his baptism which is really good. we are gonna try and work it out so he can work with us sometimes 
James- he is still set for the 24th but the thing is last couple time we visited he has said his concern is that he is afraid of a falling away after awhile and he doesn't like how much Satan is working on him right now! but we had some amazing lessons and on Saturday me and E. Tolentino split with people in the branch and i went with pres. egoino and he shared his conversion story and it was a lot like his so it was super powerful and i think it really helped him but of course we said again we cant help you with that but god can and you can ask for help through prayer so hopefully next time he gives us the green light! he is so ready though he understands everything and is reading in 2 nephi and understanding a lot. its crazy how much hes changed and grown, but if he doesn't get baptized on the 24th he will within the next couple weeks 
Rodrick- so after a week of like avoiding us we ran into him at the Hamitic festival ( its a big party every like city throws for a pageant and performances. they blast music till like 3am haha) turns out he was just super busy and his phone broke so he couldn't get a hold of us. but he canceled his trip to go to church but unfortunately  since we didnt visit him for a week we are super behind for the lessons so he wont be ready for the 24th but he is re-set for the 14th of Feb. he really is like a golden invest. he just stopped all the bad things cold turkey and hasn't had a problem. its crazy!
Mary Ann- Are you still meeting with her or waiting till she is 18? yea we just have to wait.... it sucks but ok 
Abong Family- doing great as normal and we had them work with us this Sunday and they really enjoyed it! its cool to see how much they have grown in the 3 months Ive been with them! they are one of the strongest family's in the branch now..
Aban Family- we didn't get to visit them this week and they were out of town for church so idk.. 
Did you get them to church? James and Rodrick went to church! even though we had a really small number there it was good! (it was small cuz the Hamitic party..) 
Any new investigators progressing- not really progressing but new so this week was super cool. this week has been the best week we have and it was amazing everything seemed to work out  we found 21 new invest. and we still have about 20 more to contact i really don't know what we did different but i think its just cuz of our effort and prayer and obedience because it was a miracle! i love this work there is  some hard times but its nothing compared to all the good times. it was crazy so we went from 3 to now 24 with a lot more to talk to, now of course they all wont progress but its alot nicer to have people to visit then no one! 
How is the construction coming on your house- They finished it kinda sucked cuz on Tuesday morning we have district meeting in San Jose at 8am so we have to be really fast in the morning but we had to move all or furniture to the other room so we were like 45 min late hahah....:/ and the sessions (couple missionary's) got mad at us. 
That is super crazy that cade is only got 6 more weeks, i bet your happy about that! 
HIGH- there was a couple highs this week! the great work and amazing success we had this week for our area and that we had our zone activity we hiked to a waterfall i hope the pics upload!
LOW-there really wasn't anything bad but i ripped my pants...bad haha but im getting them fixed 
my comp was texting a girl in the other area behind my back... but it turn out to be no problem but still really against the rules...
- my back started hurting again, like it did in football so idk what i did but its been bugging me i hope it starts feeling better 
- we went on splits with the zone leaders and i went with E. panganiban (he goes home next Monday) so hes a really good missionary he taught me so much about teaching and missionary work. its nice to work with someone that's been out awhile and knows a lot! I ripped my pants when i was with him haha. he said though that Ive got great potential and he said he could see me doing some great things here! and he had no complaints of really improvement for me just to keep working on the language and keep striving to grow. so that was super cool and made me feel good! 
- our zone activity like i said we went on a hike to a waterfall it was super crazy to get there and it was amazing! then we ate fresh coconut up there it was super fun 
- our FHE was so funny this week its hard to explain over email but I love this branch there so fun and awesome i wouldn't mind well i kinda hope i could stay here for 6 months..
- The kids here are crazy and they go even crazier cuz im white they just run and jump on you if there nice and cute its super fun but when they start punching you and hitting you is sucks cuz there can be like 20 of them 
- we started running every morning which kinda sucks but is nice and the runs are super cool cuz its right at the sun rise
- E. Tolentino made bical? (i think that's how you spell it) bical express its super hot and that's rare here cuz people don't really like spicy but i loved it I'm gonna learn to make it!
-you'd be so proud of me, because literally i do every dish! for every meal haha i really don't even mind dishes anymore!!
 - we go down to iloilo for zone training tomorrow so that will be fun 

so if you send another packages nesquick would be super good just btw... and I'm withdrawing 100$ today cuz I'm buying that terabyte and I'm buying some stuff for the house but i get reimbursed tomorrow so if you don't wanna replenish this one you dint have to! I'll keep looking for the packages! I think that's it, it was a great week and it flew by 

until next week, 
Elder Tracy 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Elder Dallin Stout

                                                                                                                                     Elder Stout

January 12, 2015

This week I went on exchanges with Elder Deem and I got to Drive!  That's the second time!  Ella had to cancel with us because she is sick.  A lot of people are sick right now so we haven't been able to see them.  We saw Todd and his little room that he rents out is even more decorated!  Every time I go over, he has more statues of Jesus or Buddha, and now they are painted!  I'll have to get some pictures of his room for sure! 
We taught Cristina and the Tapia family the Plan of Salvation lesson, and brought Josh Fielding to both the lessons.  He's preparing for his mission and wants to know what he can best do to prepare.  We told him to read the white handbook!  We went by David's and he invited us in for a few tacos and something to drink.  He had a bunch of friends over for a party.  They were playing NBA 2K13.  On an end table we saw a bunch of empty beer cans!  We went to Rob Brec's house for a Tri-tip barbecue!  He also made something called Chile Rellenos. He barbecues these big green Chile's till they are golden brown, then he smokes them in a bag for a minute, pulls off the skin and dunks it in melted butter with garlic salt, before eating it!  It is super good!  The Winchell's are also good friends of his and they came over! 
     Elder Robinson is doing great, we have been teaching well together and we always get along!
     I know that we are lead today by prophets who are inspired men of God. I know that we can always be happy when we abide by their counsel and heed their warnings.
     Wednesday night we were going to see Naomi when a guy on the street told us "their is a 91 yr old lady that just got evicted and is now homeless. What can your church do to help her?"  We checked it out and found a woman, named Lisa, and her mom who both got kicked out.  Their stuff was all out side the apartment in the open.  We volunteered to come back in the morning and help her move her stuff to storage.  Thursday morning we got Brother Campbell to bring his trailer and help us load everything.  It took way longer than it should have. Lisa was scatter brained from lack of sleep, and had to watch her 91 yr old mother with dementia.  We called Brother French to take our place, because we needed to be gone at 1 pm to get to Santa Barbra for a zone meeting at 2 pm.  We left at 1:30 and quickly changed into suits and got to the meeting about a half hour late. But they waited a bit for us, so we didn't miss much. 
I'm glad we had members to respond quickly to be good Samaritans to help Lisa and her mom even after we left!
Elder Stout

Elder McCade Tracy

January 12, 2015 at 9:59:00 AM

Another week, and a really cold one I might add, is in the books! Yeah, we had one day that was at -8 with the wind! We walked around all this week because it was so cold, and there was absolutely nobody out walking around, so we looked like the crazy ones!  It's rainy now, but the weather said it'll change to snow, and it probably won't stick around for long. It'll kinda warm back up through this week, hopefully, it's not too windy so we can ride around a see a few more people that have been brought to our attention. This Ward is really interesting, not only do we have a young woman who isn't a member, (she's getting taught by the Evansville Sisters now), but we just found out that there is another young woman whose been attending regularly who also isn't a member!  She's a definite focus for us this next week, so she can begin to progress towards baptism :)  Our week was pretty dismal at best, but with Karen getting her interview from President Brough last week, to finding other youth who aren't members, all of that has really made up for the entire week! 
James and Karen are doing really well and are all set for baptism on Sunday.  We're still waiting to hear from Karen on who wants to baptize her  so we can finalize the program :)  Outside of James and Karen, there really isn't much else.  One of the youth, who is also a recent convert of a few months, lost his mother a couple days ago. He and his dad are taking it surprisingly well.  His dad was investigating a while back, and hopefully we'll be able to get in and teach them a little this week.  The only thing that really held him back was smoking, so he should progress really fast. There is a couple other people that we're going to try and work with this week, to help us stay busy through the day :)
High - Having Karen pass her interview, James is doing really well and we've got some more people that we're going to start working with this week :)
Low - Just the freezing cold that forced us to walk around all week!
Not this week because of the cold and from walking, it takes quite a bit of time to get from place to place :) People tend to block us out when it's super cold, and they just want to get to their destination, but that's alright we always find at least one person that wants to talk for a little bit.
I'm excited to see what happens, and how Elle enjoys volleyball.  That's awesome about your new calling!  You've been waiting to get back into the YW program ever since you got released years ago :)  I know that you'll have fun in that calling again!!  You'll probably be there when Elle turns 16 at the end of the year.  I can't wait to see what happens next, back home :)  This week I learned that having a lot of patience pays off, and when it's necessary, let some people have some time without the missionaries, so they recognize the difference between feeling the Spirit with us there and without seeing us for a time.  There hasn't been any profound experiences for a time, we've taught James and Karen everything and we're just trying to find some new people. I will keep doing what I need to in order to help those we meet with :)

Love you and miss you!
Love your Son and Missionary,
Elder McCade Tracy

Elder Dallin Tracy

  Mon, Jan 12, 2015 at 12:14 PM

This week has been alright!  We had some ups and downs, but it's all good!  Everything is finally setting down from the holidays and we are returning back to a full work weeks and stuff which is good, cuz we need the time!  So this week at church our numbers were high, but not as big as last week!  But still strong and higher than usual.  The bad thing was and probably the low for the week, was we had 0 investigators at church, so we will have to move their baptismal dates back....:(   Our weakest part of our work is new investigators, so we spent a lot of our week finding and trying to make our teaching pool a little bigger.  We have about 15 people we need to contact next week, so that's good and could really boost the work here in Hamtic!! 
Garbriel- Of course he's not finished cuz he got baptized, the goal now is the temple!  And his wife is a Returned Missionary, and he has a little boy.  So they, of course, want to go to the temple, so we are starting to prepare them (the little boy eating the coconut was their little boy)! He's so cute!! Haha!
Josh- josh? James...James had some great things and some bad things this week.   We met with him 2x this week and they were really good lessons, and he's stopped drinking coffee and is reading the Book of Mormon a lot, he read over 20 chapters in 2 Nephi this week, and is understanding it and getting deep things out of it, which is really great, but....he said last time that he doesn't feel worthy to be baptized, and wants to make sure he is 100% on his decision. So I told him, "For that there is nothing I can say to really help you, but, I can tell you something to do, and that's pray to our Father in Heaven."  So we challenged him to pray, and ask the same question every night until we visit again, and then re-evaluate where he's at.  But then he didn't go to church, so we are forced to move his baptism date back at least 1 week right now.
Rodrick- He's progressing well, but we just have so much more to teach before his date, and his work schedule is super hard.   And so it hard to get him when he's there, and hes going to Aklan next Sunday, and if he doesn't go to church next Sunday, we have to move his date back. So we told him, if he really wants to baptized on the 24th, we are gonna have to meet with him everyday, so we can prepare him 100%, and then he's gonna have to choose church over a trip to Aklan.  So it's all up to him and his choices now!  I really hope he makes the right choices!!
Robert- Still same!!   We just can't talk!!  When we are there, he isn't, and they live far in the mountains, so it's not easy to get there!!
Mary Ann- her parents said NO! to being baptized, but she really wants to be, so the only thing we can do is wait till she turns 18, which is in April, I think.
Anyone new? No one really new.  There is a lot of people we found, but need to contact and really teach them.
Less actives-
The Abong Family is doing great!  They're my favorites and their faith is just getting stronger and they are getting callings and starting to help the branch!!
The Aban Family- Their whole family came to church, even the inactive older sons!!  It was awesome!! ( The crazy girls made weird faces are them)

Even though our investigators are low, we have seen so much success with our less actives and it really is just as rewarding, and it helps out our branch with leadership and attendance!  Our branch looks like its on the up and up!!  Changes are being made and its looking good!!  I just hope they stay with it!  We are close to getting our budget back as a branch, so that will be super nice to do activities for free!! Haha!! 

Congrats on your calling!!  I knew you'd be back in the Young Women soon!! Haha!  But for New Years, I didn't care, I just went to bed early!!  I was so tired!  I'm trying to upload pictures, but is super slow so there might not be all of them!!  Sorry, I have them saved on my sd.  Thank you for the recipe, and ya,Elder Tolentino's tooth is fine!!  No problems now!! Haha!!  But ya, it's gross. 
A lot of the pictures are at Family Home Evening at the Abong's again, with some of the members along with.  And then with the Aban kids, and if the mountain ones got uploaded, I'll explain them in a minute...  
- Mom, can you thank Sue Green??  She is still sending me things, and I really appreciate it!!
Things that happened this week-- 
-Zone training, and it was really good!! I learned some good things and then had lunch after!! Super good!! Haha!!
-Some members gave me a hammock and I hung it in our house!  It's super nice!! Haha!!  I love it!!   Oh, and our house is kinda under construction!!  The tiles broke cuz of the earthquake, so our room is all torn up!!  Haha!!  I tried to upload of picture of it, but I don't know?? 
- So to cross water, or gaps, there are these sketchy bamboo bridges and they're made for Filipinos, but this week I broke one, and almost went swimming, but I jumped and made it!! Haha!!  It was crazy~! 

So, back ground information, we were just waiting for the bus, and this guy came and contacted us.  And his family are all members and his sisters even served missions, but when he was taught, the elder only knew English, so the guy couldn't understand.  But he asked if we could visit him on Sunday.  Well, on Sunday, me and Elder Chapman went on a split, so we set off to find this guy.  His house, he said, was in Casanlang, which is like a 20 minute bus ride in the mountains, and we get there and start asking around, and everyone says "taas" or "sa baw baw," which just means higher, or up!!  Haha!!  And they all said, just close.  So we start walking and we are contacting everyone we see,  and everyone is super nice and was good to introduce the gospel to them,  and they helped us a lot, but then we got to the next like village which is "Bot Bot" which is like a 45 minute hike straight up hill in the mountains.  And we get to "Bot Bot" and they speak Tagalog!!  Now, me and Elder Chapman are really new still, and can barely communicate in Illonog/Krya-a,  so we were lost!! Haha!!  Just walking and walking and we get to a basketball court, and we are about 1 and 1/2 hour walk from the round, like literally the top of the mountain!  And we find his son at the basketball court, so he shows us their house, which is another 30 minute straight jungle climb, and we get there, and he's not even home...:(  but, we taught his family and it was a great lesson and was sweet!  But, when we were done, it was pitch black and we had one flashlight and a 2 hr walk ahead!! Haha!!  And to make it better, all the people were asking if we were scared, and we said "No" and they said, "Well be careful, cuz there's a lot of rebels in the mountains that kidnap Americans!" (we are both Americans...)!!  We thought they were just joking??!! Haha!!  We got home safe, but it turns out they weren't joking.. but it was so cool up!  Even though it was a straight hike on rocks, it was amazing!  I'll try and get the pictures up! 

I'm excited for the packages, but I think that was about it!!
Love and miss ya, 
Elder Tracy 

Elder Dallin Stout

January 5, 2015

The Zone leaders gave us a referral, his name is Pete. Elder Cavazos and I went to see him we talked on his front porch. He is really cool, last Sunday he took his family to church at the other ward. We saw Jim Scott and found out that he also was a professional official for High school and College football! He liked the video camera we gave him for Christmas. We actually were given it from an investigator, so it was good that we could pay it forward. A lot of people in our area that we work with are sick, so it's been hard to teach them. We saw the Topete family and brought their home teacher with us. We read out of the Children's Book Of Mormon and challenged them to read daily as a family. They have been consistent at coming to church since William got baptized!  In the past, they would get active right as one of the kids needed to be baptized and then stop coming.  But now, Brother Topete is taking Sundays off to come to church!  We also taught the Topia family, They are less active and have an 8 yr old son named Issac who wants to get baptized after seeing his friend William Topete baptized!  We took Jake Heath who is leaving on his mission soon, and taught the Restoration. Sister Topia said the kids can come to church with the Topete family since she works Sundays!
     Elder Robinson was sick at the beginning of the week, he threw up last P-day in the showers at church during sports!  He says McDonald's doesn't taste as good the second time!  So I was stuck inside for a while, but I got to blitz with Elder Cavazos, so that was good.  Elder Robinson is better now though.
     Something I learned yesterday is that Heavenly Father definitely loves us and wants to help us. His goal is not to try to keep out people from the Celestial kingdom, He want's us there!!  All of us!  As long as someone desires to live with Him, and to be with their family for eternity, then they can and will!  Heavenly Father loves us so very much that's why he prepared a way through Jesus Christ. John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
     We did service for Rob again this week. He had this wheelbarrow full of Dog poop that he left outdoors, it rained and filled the Wheelbarrow. When we helped him it was full of this black sludge looking stuff and its been like that since the last time it rained! So it stinks really, REALLY BAD! We duga hole at the entrance to the backyard and poured it all in there and covered it with white powder to mask the smell a little. We wheelbarrowed bricks to the backyard past the hole, careful not to step in it! We also organized his garage and tools. He is going to have us over for dinner next week for BBQ tri-tip! We found out that his family is also good friends with the Wares and Wynchels!
Elder Stout

Elder McCade Tracy

January 5, 2015 at 12:47:56 PM

My New Years was great! Thankfully I was able to get to sleep on New Years Eve and we were able to stay warm during the majority of the day, it'll get colder this week :) I still can't believe that Elle is driving now! That makes me feel so old, it'll be fun to drive with her and help her learn a lot of things.
Haha :) I wasn't looking forward to working after Christmas either, but somehow we were able to work and get some stuff done. I can't believe that Seth is home now and Colton and Brandon are not far behind them!  It's just a short 8 weeks until I'm home again. Honestly, it's a little tough to stay focused, but with the progress of James and Karen, it helps me to work as much as I can with what we're given here in Evansville. Karen thought that the 17th was a Sunday, and the Stake wants to have baptisms on Sundays, so we talked with her, and Karen was all for moving her date to the 18th, so we've got both of them set for the 18th now!  They're both living the Word of Wisdom fully, and President Brough is coming to interview Karen on the 8th. That's really about it right now in the area. We're going through the area and organizing it all, making sure that we know who is in each area so we can be as effective as possible, if everything falls through. I will definitely keep you updated with all the progress of the investigators that we have. Thanks for keeping me updated with Elle and her volleyball tournaments. LaDonna hasn't responded to us since New Year's Eve, and we've been window checked a couple times, so we're dropping her for now.
There aren't really any new investigators that are really progressing right now.  Our main focus is on James and Karen, although there may be a few people that we could add to the pool after a few things happen this week.  Ok, I will be looking for it in the mail when we check it.
High- Having Karen stay so strong living the Word of Wisdom.  We gave her a blessing last week and it really helped her through a few trials that she has faced recently.  It's been great to see the progress with James and his willingness to follow the Word of Wisdom, things are gonna happen and it's gonna be great!
Low - Having to drop a few people and just not being able to talk with as many people as we would like to due to the weather and not many people being outside any more.
We had some really spiritual lessons with Karen and James this past week which really helped make up for the lack of teaching this last week. We're planting seeds with many people that we talk to and pass by on the street, there is still a lot to do here in the area and the work will never stop. That's good to hear about the rooms and the truck, just let me know when my input is needed :)  I know that I've got a lot to do, and I'm doing everything in my power to keep my head up and focus on the work here. I know it's possible. Thank you for your love and support! Love you and miss you!
Love your Son and Missionary,
Elder McCade Tracy

Elder Zach Beckman

Mon, 5 Jan 2015 12:52:35

18 Months!!... Holy Cow

Hey Everyone!!  How are you doing??  Life has been great for me these last two months!  I am loving the work here, and I have made a lot of changes in my life, and it has been just an awesome week!!

So, this last week was New Years, and it was an awesome one... Except for the fact that I went to sleep at 10 pm!!  Ha ha ha!!  But I don't care!!  I was really tired, so I knocked out!  But in our mission, we had to be inside at 6 pm that night, so we didn't do anything stupid.  But it was really awesome because the mission president gave us this huge packet of paper to study and do basically home work for 2 days!  But it was awesome!!  It was all about looking back on our mission, and how well we have done, and how we need to do better, and it was basically like a 6 hour packet on Repentance!!  It was so awesome to go through that, because it really made a huge impact on my life, and it made me really re-think some things in my life, and where I want to go in life!!  But it really caused me to think a lot about it!  In fact, this last week was one of the hardest of my mission. I'm not really good about putting it into words or things like that, but I feel like my life plans have all of a sudden changed course, and it was something really hard to deal with, and it caused a lot of Crazy anxiety, and I was sick to my stomach for like 5 days!  But it was perfect timing, because we had Mission Leadership Meeting this last week and I was able to sit down with my mission president and talk with him about everything going on in my life, and just really get it all off my chest!  And it was such a good feeling to talk to him and to really get a good talk in with him!!  But I feel like a new person this last week, and it feels so good to not have all that on my mind anymore, and to be able to be back to 100 % on the work!!  So now that I am back to normal, it has been a great week!!

Sorry, there is not much info about that last story, but I don't know how to talk about it, so that's all ya get for now!  But this last week we also had Zone Fun day which was a blast!!   We were able to play some games with the zone and to have a good time playing all sorts of fun games!!  We played a lot of get to know you games because there are so many people in the zone, and it was fun!  We have so many "Different" kinds of people in our zone!!  It is hilarious!! Ha ha!!  So it is very interesting to see what people do in certain situations!!

Well that is about it for the week... sorry there is not much! Ha ha ha!!  I guess it is because not much happened this week!!  I will be more detailed next week, but know this... This week has been one that has really changed who I am as a person, and I will never be the same because of it!  I know that God has put me here in these situations to help me grow and "become the person that He wants me to be," and I know He does all of this because He loves me.  I know that Christ walks with me everyday, as long as I allow Him to be with me, and when I do that I can really feel His love and support in everything I do!!  I LOVE being a missionary, and I hope all of you can find ways to share the gospel with others around you!!


~Keep Smiling~

Elder Beckman