Sunday, December 28, 2014

Work like normal

So... Christmas was real good this week. We had a Christmas Zone Conference which President said "was the closest to a day-off " we would have in our missions Which was true, we played Christmas Jeopardy and watched Mr. Krueger's Christmas. It was really fun and well-planned. But the best part of Christmas Conference is that I got to s old companions, old kabahays. and a bunch of other people. I really have been able to make a lot of friends here and it's been a good thing. 

For Christmas... we had lunch at a recent converts house, but then we just worked like normal. It was a good Christmas and i"m sure I will never forget it. This year, I really realized the true meaning of Christmas I think last year, I was really caught up in myself, because I'm far from home and I couldn't speak the language... but this year I realized that true Christmas is giving of ourselves. 

That being said, I've done a bit of self-reflection. I've realized that things that used to be really hard for me are not hard anymore. And I know for a fact that it's because Heavenly Father has helped me to become stronger, to become more capable, and to turn outwards. 

But anyway, we found this new investigator this week who has a lot of potential. He has multiple piercings and tattoos, so at first I doubted a little bit, but he is so willing to change. He actually came to church yesterday and I'm excited for him. We taught him last night and he had taken out his piercings! :) We didn't tell him, but the Spirit is really working in him.

When we were teaching him about the Plan of Salvation, we taught him about the three different kingdoms and he asked like once we were judged if we just stayed there... we started to answer him and then he asked us if the transportation fro the Terrestrial to the Celestial kingdom was expensive. 

I love being here in the Philippines. I love the people , I love the gospel, and I love missionary work. I feel like I can finally say I'm doing my best and that Heavenly Father is proud of what I'm doing. It's the same for all of us... as long as we are doing His will, He is prouder than we know. :) 

I love you all! Enjoy your week!! 
Sister Holmes

Monday, December 22, 2014

12-22-14 MTL

He recognized me

Well.... Merry Christmas for reals this time! :) I really hope all of you have a good week and a wonderful Christmas! :) Earlier, we had a zone activity and had a gift exchange... so that was real cool. I mean I got some oatmeal and crayons, but I guess I shouldn't have expected more from a White Elephant gift exchange. That's just how it is. :) But I realized there are very few missionaries here that were also here last Christmas. :( And maybe just today I realized how old I am in the mission.

Anyway, as you may or may not know... I have a new companion! :) Yay! Her name is Sister GERARDO and she is from Iloilo. Which means, 4 out of my seven campanions are Ilongga. (But that's okay with me because they are known for being nice.) She is now 10 months in the mission... and she has a beautiful singing voice! :)

Something cool happened this week. Sister Gerardo and I were walking to one of our appointments and this kid stopped us and told me that he recognized me. So I was assigned in Ward 1 before and I went on exchanges to the area that I am in right now. So I met him on one of the exchanges and he happened to recognize me. So were able to teach him and his oldr sister and her husband... and it was just cool to see that things I had done in the past have a connection to why I am here now. It amazes me the details of the plan of our Heavenly Father. He really knows what He is doing. 

I have been studying a lot about hope lately. Especially in our world now, we absolutely need to have hope and an abiding trust in our Father in Heaven. I cannot think of a better message of hope than that of the birth of Jesus Christ. From the very beginning, when He was born in a manger, He taught us a great lesson. Of because of everything He did, we have hope that even if things are tough and even if we are struggling, feel lost or alone, that there is still hope.
One of my favorite scriptures is found in Ether 12:4 which says: 
"Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God." It definitely says it better than I can. 

Well, I love you all and hope you have a very Merry Christmas! :) 
Sister Holmes

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Tender Loving care and "Meet the Mormons"

Wow! It's Christmas! :) Okay, not yet, maybe I'm a little excited. but the Christmas devotional was so GOOD last night. I really loved all the talks and I love the Spirit of Christmas! :) If you didn't get a chance to watch it, check it out at and I know you won't regret it. ( there's the link to make things easy :) One thing that I really loved those and has stayed with me is from Elder D Todd Christofferson he said something like "Doing the will of the Father should be a pattern of living not just an annual event." As we remember the true meaning of Christmas, the love and sacrifice and kindheartedness should not just be at Christmas should be all year round. Let us also remember that the best gift we gave give is the gift of the gospel! :) 

We also had this sweet activity this week called "MEET the MORMONS". A lot of the members invited their friends, and we had some music performances and it was a cool opportunity for them to see the chapel, and to see that we are just normal people. We had booths about different things that the Church does, like family history, missionary work, and self-reliance. We also had some workshops about the Restoration and Plan of Salvation. The members are amazing here- they really did their part and we hope to see some good results from it :) 

Other than that, it was a normal week other than one of our kabahays got bit by a dog... So I took care of here for a day while my companion and her companion worked in both areas. They say dog bites are dangerous... but she's still alive thanks to my tender love and care ;) That's not true. In all honestly, she still alive because of the rabies shot :) 

Anyway I love you all!! Have a good week! :)
 Sister Holmes

Monday, December 8, 2014

December 7 ,2014

"It won't bite you"

It has felt like Christmas for the past few months... since the Filipinos started decorating in September, but it's really Christmas time!! It's so weird since there's not really any snow. But it has been real cold lately at night. I think it's a December thing.
As for this typhoon business, we didn't see any effect here at all. It was windy, but we didn't even get any rain. I honestly don't know that much about it. :) 

So we had this little girl come up to us and she was just staring at me. She asked my companion why I was so white and why I had different colored eyes. And do you know what my companion told her?? She told her I was an alien and that if she wasn't careful I would bite her... then she ran away. 
The next day we saw her with a group of little kids and she told them "that's an alien and it might bite you if you go too close." Then one of the other little kids tried to touch my hair and was like " No, she's pretty and nice. It won't bite you." 
So probably I laughed forever, but I learn so much from little kids. they are so innocent and so trusting. 

I got to go to this cool meeting this week. We talked about the theme for the mission next year and I' real excited about it... :) Our theme is REAL GROWTH. We talked about how we want to experience real growth in the Church here in Philippines Angeles Mission. We also want to experience real growth within ourselves, which means being more converted. We set goals for how we will do all of that, but it really hit me that (hopefully) I have changed a lot while I've been here. It would literally be a waste of my time if I left and came back the same way I was before. But we talked about how this is more than just new year resolutions but it's more about allowing Christ to change us and to make us better. :) 

Anyway, I had a wonderful week and Im so excited what else Heavenl Father has is store for this area. We found a new investigator this week and I have a really good feeling about what the Lord has in store. He is the brother of one of recent converts( notice how all of our investigators are brothers?? There's a priesthood army in this area) and told us that he has been looking for more in his life and feels this might be it. :) 

anyway I love you all!! :) As this Christmas season continues remember the real reason for Christmas! :) Love you all!!!

Sister Holmes

Monday, December 1, 2014

All things are possible through Christ

I can't believe it's already DECEMBER!! Time is flying... It's weird to think the I came into the field about a year ago, and as I think about that, I just can't believe how much I have grown and what I have become with Heavenly Father's help! I am so amazed and how much He has blessed me. Anyway... I had a real good week. We did this Community Service Project and helped this family clean up their yard. There is an American family that moved into Tarlac Stake and they came... It's so weird to see a whole family of just Americans... and like I forgot how little kids speak when they speak English. Like, I kind of had a hard time figuring out what they were saying, but they were adorable. They will just be here for a little less than a year, but they are a really awesome family.

This last Saturday, we had a baptism! Yay! He was really so prepared and I felt the Spirit so strongly when he bore his testimony. It'sbeen so cool to see him progress over the past few weeks in prepartion for his baptism. I do have to admit, I was so stressed because the baptism was supposed to be at 4, but he didn't come until 5. It's just Mormon Standard Time I think to be late, but it's stressful! But the service was so good and the ward here is awesome! :) 

I've been studying a lot about sacrfice lately. This is definitely the biggest sacrifice I've made, but I feel like God has replaced my sacrifice with something much better than if I wouldn't have sacrificed anything. I've noticed in my studies though that love always comes before sacrifice. Just like for me, I wouldn't have been able or even wanted to make this sacrifice if I didn't love that Lord. But sacrifice doesn't start with us, just love love doesn't start with us. Our Heavenly Father has loved us from the very beginning and His love is eternal. And because of His love for us, He sacrificed His Only Begotten Son. Christ did the same thing for us.... So as this Christmas season approaches, let us all be mindful of the sacrifice that has been made for each one of us! At let us also thinkk of what are the things we are willing to sacrifice for Christ! :) 
There's some real good videos at this link! :) 

I love all of you so much 
!! :) xoxox Sister Holmes