Wednesday, July 19, 2017

WEEK 48: ANOTHER FAMILY BAPTISM!!

 Last Tuesday we talked to these people and they fed us immediately and it was so good. That just shows how nice Filipinos are, they feed complete strangers, delicious food. 

    On Wednesday I read 1 Corinthians 13 and it had a powerful effect on me.  I encourage all to read it.   Ponder it and think how you can apply it in your life,  I promise that you will learn something and it will help you.  We showed up to a new eating place that we just found and there were a ton of people being loud as they ate.   When we stepped into to eat the whole place went quiet and they just started staring at us. haha They were so surprised to see an American.  It was so funny and a little awkward.   The Lord keeps  providing,  we found 11 new investigators that could lead to many potential families. Missionary work rocks!

    The father that got baptized on Saturday came back from fishing on Wednesday. It was a miracle.   They were out of money,  he had to go fishing and was going to come back on Friday to be here for the baptism.  My companion and I were a little stressed about that. We wanted to be able to teach them and visit them all before the baptism but he came back on Wednesday night and was there Thursday which was a huge miracle because the reason they came back was because they caught a lot of fish.  It was an answer to prayers, it was so cool.  Even though they were out less time they caught more fish.  That just shows that no matter what our weaknesses or faults are, the Lord can improve and qualify us and work miracles in our lives that will bless us and our families.  He also resisted his fellow fisherman when they were drinking coffee. He heated up water and put sugar in it.  What a guy, so proud of him. 

    On Friday we taught eternal marriage to some investigators and they loved it.  So happy to see the joy that came into the girls eyes.  The plan of salvation is awesome.  We got charged by a cow with huge horns, but we got away safely with no injures encountered.

    On Saturday was the baptism of the Madrid Family. They are so awesome.  I can really see the change in them and how they have repented, it’s so cool.  I love them so much.  I am so grateful that we were able to teach and baptize them.  So many small miracles happened that made this baptism possible.  Our mission president attended the baptism and it was awesome.   If you remember the Tribucio family from May.(They got baptized in the ocean)  The father of that family baptized the father of the Madrid family because they are friends, so cool.  I baptized the mom and my companion baptized their daughter. Such a cool experience.  I can't explain the happiness of seeing someone enter the waters of baptism (and those waters are awesome in the ocean) and start their covenant pathway to our Heavenly Father.  The waves were huge again.  When they receded they were at my knees but would then come back at my shoulders.  Great day!

   On Sunday we had tons of people come to church which was awesome. Many new investigators.  Our mission president was still there and he confirmed the dad, my companion the mom and me the daughter. Confirming is also such a cool experience, so spiritual to be able to participate and have my hand on my mission president's shoulder with my hand on someones head as we confirmed.  We had the first rest hymn in our special sacrament. That is huge because the church is just starting there, we don't need rest hymns usually but we did this Sunday.  I can really see the work progressing here, so awesome! 

   I hope you all read the Book of Mormon and look for missionary opportunties and remember that God loves you and cares for you. Don’t get discouraged, remember who you are.  You are a child of God and Jesus Christ atoned for your sins.  Act in faith and He will bless you. Have a great week. 


Elder Snyder





Friday, July 14, 2017

WEEK 47: EATING SHARK... SO DELICIOUS


  So last Tuesday was the 4th of July, so happy 4th of July everyone. I love it here so much but it also makes me appreciate how amazing America is.  I am thankful to be an American. 

  On Wednesday we were called by our mission president to find where a member lived.  We went looking and got directions and ended up in a village of the natives that don't speak Tagalog.  So we knocked a village of Mangyans looking for the member and were confused why we were sent there. (the answer comes later in the email) We also had an investigator hide from us.  She almost did it but we saw her, she still sent her friend to tell us she wasn't there. haha  She can't hide for long.   It was sad that she hid but we will try again. 

   On Thursday we reviewed the baptismal interview for the Madrid family. They are awesome and I can really see the change in them. The gospel changes lives but what I learned from them is the change isn't always easy but it will happen. If we wish to change and become better and come closer to Christ then we need to put forth our own effort. We need to prove to the Lord that we are willing to do anything and He will bless us. Ether 12:6. Faith will be tried but it will result in blessings.  We had a miracle happen on Thursday.  In May we had that wonderful huge family get baptized and their nanay (the grandma) wanted to but wasn't ready (long story), but she came to us on Thursday and said more or less "elders, I'm ready" and we were pumped and so happy. She has a baptism date of July 22.  Something happened in her life and it changed her heart and taught me that the Lord works in mysterious ways. 

   On Friday we went to find that member that I mentioned we went looking for on Wednesday.  When we asked directions they sent us to the bridge that was called amnay but there is actually a place called amnay but when we asked, the village was closer so that's where they sent us.   Friday we went to the right place and it was so far in the middle of nowhere and we were the first missionaries that they had ever seen. It was pretty cool and the coolest part was we found the member and she was surprised to see us because it's so far, but she was happy.  We left her with a Book of Mormon which she was so happy to get. That is a long story told short but it was cool.  We also bought shark at the palengke  and it was delicious.  When we bought it the skin was still on it and we had to skin it a little.  It was so good though.

   On Saturday I went on exchanges and those elders had bikes.  It was with elder Forsberg again. The bikes are brand new, it was so fun.  We were so successful and found so many people and we also had fun riding on the dirt roads and stuff.  It was really tiring and my butt really hurt but it was a great day.  This one guy rolled his own drugs and started smoking it right in the lesson which was weird haha.  We taught the baranggay captain which was cool.   We had leftover shark we hadn't cooked yet so we fried it up and it was so good, incredibly good.  Who woulda known.  
   on Sunday we had a branch conference and a bunch of members met in one place and  it was cool to see the faithfulness of the members coming from all over.  Another miracle, we found someone and she came to church that wants to be baptized which was awesome.  The Lord is helping this work progress, nothing can hold it back.   

   Earlier today we went on a really cool hike and harvested fresh buko and it was delicious. Fresh from the coconut tree.  On the way back we walked the straight and narrow path and had to hold on to the bamboo rod.  Cool real life Lehi's vision of the tree of life. It was a good week full of miracles and adventures. 

Elder Snyder



Enough Said

Good Times Riding 

So Delicious

 Bamboo Rod

Friday, July 7, 2017

WEEK 46: ITALIAN GUY / SCUBA DIVING

      Last Tuesday I had exchanges with Elder Smith.  We both were in the MTC together so it was cool.  We worked hard and got some good work done.  We had a cool experience,  we were on the way home and on the bus there was this Italian guy on his way to go scuba diving.  We started talking and he was so interested and we gave him the only thing we had in English (he was good in english) which was a small “I'm a Mormon” pass along card.  It was so cool that he could find missionaries here and then be able to get connected with them in Italy. There’s a plan for everyone. 

  On Wednesday we worked hard and worked with some investigators that are difficult, but we will stick with them and trust in the spirit to be the real teacher and soften their hearts. 

  On Thursday we found some great new investigators and felt guided by the spirit as we randomly went somewhere and found some really potential investigators.  We also saw our branch president which was cool.  He' s a good guy and hard working.  We caught a van pretty fast but it was better because one of the counselors in the mission presidency was the driver and he gave us a free ride, what a guy. 

  On Friday we had zone conference and it was awesome, I learned so much.  President and Sister Koster are awesome and are just right for this mission.  They also gave us all flu shots.  It was the best shot ever, I didn't even feel it. Sister Koster made homemade brownies and cookies and it was amazing, seeing  we are on an island and never get that, so good!!  Later that night I was working in our kabahays area with Elder Forsberg and we taught this family.  They are so faithful but have so many problems and then they look to us.  They have two 19 year olds that have only finished high school.  It’s crazy to think we're here but the lesson was great and I felt the spirit,  they seemed to be helped so it was a great expererience. 

  Saturday was a great day.   We taught a lot of people and they are doing amazing.  I won't go into details but its so cool to be here even though its very difficult.   Our investigator fed us hot cakes so that was a plus haha.  I learned a good lesson about prayer.   We had a lot to do and not enough time to do it so we really needed the Lord's help.  I prayed to catch a van quickly and a van came quick but it was full so at first I was discouraged because we needed that van, but then like 1 minute later a super nice bus comes around the corner and we get on that. It shows that if we trust in the Lord then something better is coming around the corner.  Just because things don't work out the first time doesn't mean that we are abandoned.  The Lord always has a plan and something better in store.  It was a great lesson I learned and wanted to share.  

  Sunday we had a good day and got some people to church.  The area is so ready to harvest.  Just need to be patient and continue in faith.


love you all and hope you all have a great week. 


Elder Snyder






Friday, June 30, 2017

WEEK 45 : WE NEED TO TRUST HIM

  Last Tuesday we only had a few hours to work and it was so productive.  The Lord truly blessed us and we had a great day and found some really good investigators.  No matter what restrictions or things happen to us I can see the hand of the Lord and really blessing missionary work. 
  On Wednesday we did some service.  We cut down a tree for some investigators in our kabahays area.  It was simple but really helped them.   We found this investigator that was found by missionaries a while back,  she is so smart.  She is in Helaman 8 already and understands so well.  She is preparing to get baptized into Iglesia ni Cristo (antoher religion here) but has now found us and so we are really going to work with her.  
  Thursday we had some great lessons.  We taught our recent converts and they are still amazing and their faith is awesome.  I love them so much.   We taught that lady that was found by missionaries awhile ago.   So in the iglesia ni cristo they believe that Jesus Christ is just a great prophet and as I testified of the divinity of Christ I felt the spirit rushing through me.  It was amazing.  Jesus is the Christ, He is the Son of God,  He is our Savior and because of him, He LIVES.  We can return to live with Him and I am so thankful for those truths.   Funny thing from today,   I met Russell from the movie "Up".  I'll send a picture. 
    Friday the senior couple worked with us.  We have this crazy smart investigator that understands so much but also just won’t read the Book of Mormon.  Every single question could be answered so easy.  Most of the questions could be answered in the introduction.  It just showed that for the Book of Mormon to help us, we actually need to read it and study it, ponder it and then it can help us be spiritually edified and learn new things.  God WILL answer our questions through the scriptures.  They are the textbook of life and they were written by God through His prophets.  Make sure not to take for granted the Book of Mormon.  
   Saturday I had exchanges with Elder Forsberg.  We were together in the MTC,  I love that guy.  We are really close.  It was so cool to see how far we have come.  Our Tagalog was bad, but now we slayed it and had a great day.  It was so fun.  We were able to give a blessing which is always an amazing experience.  I am so grateful for the priesthood.    We taught the Vicky lady again and she is coming along, little by little. 
   On Sunday we were able to ordain a recent convert to the priesthood and we found an apartment so hopefully we will actually be able to move to our area soon. 
  One thing I really learned this week was that the Lord has His own timing.  We can't expect everything to be done according to our will. We need to trust Him, that’s part of faith.  We believe that He can do it and then we have to believe that He will do it when its best for us. That’s the part that tests our faith. I am coming to realize that you can't control others agency but as you do your best the Lord will bless you.  I love you all and hope you have a good week. 

Elder Snyder

Russell from "UP"


 Bacon!!!!!


Sunday, June 25, 2017

WEEK 44: PIGS , DUCKS, DOGS, CATS

   Good week. The week of transfers. I stayed in my area and got a new companion. He is awesome, his name is Elder Mesobre. We get along and I already know that I will learn a lot from him. So last Wednesday was my last day with Elder Nolasco. We had a good last day, we taught a lot and it was very productive.  We were visiting the Tribucio family who are fishermen, so they buy food for 10 days and then go out to sea.  Brother Tribucio's friends all brought coffee but he bought powdered milk and was proud of it.  He's the man.  He has a strong testimony and is not afraid to live the gospel no matter what others are doing.  He does what he does for the right reasons.  It makes me want to improve and be better.  We also taught this really humble family.  I felt the spirit so strong with them,  they are so sincere and open hearted. Their house has pigs, ducks, dogs, cats, etc roaming through it but they are happy.  The husband is a carpenter and is awesome.    The van ride home was intense.  The vans sometimes race because you pick up passengers anywhere.  You just walk to the street and flag them down.  So the vans race sometimes so they can be in front which means they would be the one to get the passenger.  The race was so cool. The van behind us had no people so he really needed to get in front of us but our driver was so good he wouldn’t let it happen.   We are just flying down the island in an awesome race, lots of fun.

   On Thursday my companion left and my new companion arrived.  Since certain  logistics of transfers on the island, not much else happened.  He is so cool and we are ready to work hard. 

   On Friday we had a tender mercy and I'm not going to explain these peoples back story but we were able to teach these people.  They are awesome and have real potential.  I felt the spirit so strong teaching with elder Mesobre.  I’m looking forward in working with my new companion.    We taught another investigator that is so humble,  he is doing his best and is awesome.  He is so close to giving up cigarettes.  His new goal is only 2 a day.  He is really improving on the amount he has a day, I’m proud of him.    On the van ride home this guy needed to puke and was just leaning over with his head out the window.  That was quite the site, haha it was interesting., poor guy. 

   On Saturday we visited this family that lives so far away that we got a tricycle going there but then we're way out there and had to walk back.  It was so hot, but the Lord always provides.  This guy saw us a long way off and somehow knew we were Mormons and came and picked us up., it was great.  We were so grateful for that guy.    We taught the humble family again.   My Tagalog rocked!  I could really feel the spirit testifying through me, such a great feeling.   This tatay was proud of us for being missionaries, so he gave us free fruit, freebies is nice.

  On Sunday we had district conference.  I am so proud of  the members from our area, they had to travel 4 hours by jeep, (which is rough) and  had to wake up at 3.  We even had investigators come too. It was amazing.  It was great for the members of our area to see a huge chapel and lots of members, because where we meet in Mamburao, is in the function room of a hotel because we're not a branch yet but we're getting close.  It was a great day

  Earlier we went on a really cool hike.  I love the Philippines and the great scenery.  There’s just people living way out in the middle of nowhere farming their rice fields, hahaha   Our kabahays have an investigator and they couldn't find him. As we were hiking way out in the middle of nowhere we found him farming his field haha it was so funny.   It was a good week and ready to work this week.  I love being a missionary in this great time.  Keep reading scriptures every day and doing what you need to.  love you all


Elder Snyder



Wednesday, June 14, 2017

43: TEACHING 7TH DAY ADVENTISTS

   This week was a great week. We had another baptism and it was such a great experience. 
   Last Tuesday we were teaching these 7th day Adventists and it was such a good lesson. I really felt the Spirit guiding what I should say and the lesson was so spiritual.

   On Wednesday it rained so hard and we had to walk to these members that live right by the ocean, it’s like a 30 minute walk down this dirt road and it was raining so that added to the excitement.  We had to go to them to make sure we could do the baptism there and they don't have phones so we had to walk there but tender mercy, they were there and we worked it all out. We taught our recent converts and then they asked for a priesthood blessing because they had some sick kids. I was so happy they asked and it was awesome to be able to exercise the priesthood and bless them. It’s so cool blessing in Tagalog.  I never feel more guided than when my hands are on someone’s head and I'm blessing in Tagalog,  so amazing what the spirit can do.
   On Thursday we had district finding and it was awesome.  Our district found many many new people that are prepared to receive the gospel.  It just shows that Heavenly Father has a plan for all of us individually and we should never give up, never.  Just keep going and He  WILL take care of you. It also rained super hard that day and I had lent my umbrella to another elder which was a mistake because I got soaked.  I had to put all my important stuff in my companions bag.  I was drenched and people thought it was so funny to see a soaking American with no umbrella.  
   On Friday the senior couple worked with us to go back to the referral that we found that was super far away.  I'm so thankful for their help, senior couples are so necessary.  They don't really speak Tagalog but their testimonies were so powerful and I am sure our investigator felt it. They really brought the spirit.  Also the investigator is so interested and so smart.  They know the bible inside and out but they don't like to bible bash.  They have such open hearts and listened so well, I can't wait to go back.   Then we visited another investigator with the senior couple and it was another great lesson.  It was the  7th day Adventist again and they committed to word of wisdom.  Their hearts are also so open and they are really progressing and slowly gaining a testimony. That’s one thing I've learned from investigators, a testimony doesn't come instantly,  it comes a little by little and only as we are seeking after it. If we just sit around then nothing will happen, but as we actively do what we want then our testimony will be strengthened.  One thing I've learned from less actives is if we expect God to solve all of our problems or expect to keep a strong testimony and we aren't doing anything then nothing will happen.  We need to continually do what we are supposed to and our testimony wont just stay strong, but will get even stronger.  Do not give up hope or lose faith because something bad happens. Trust God always. 
   Last Saturday we had our baptism!!!  It was so awesome.  The lady baptized has been an investigator for a few months and really acted in faith to be baptized.  She was the only one in her family.  She is amazing and I have loved seeing her testimony grow.  One thing that really helped her gain a testimony was reading the Book of Mormon and I can testify, that is so true. Reading the Book of Mormon daily will help us maintain and strengthen our testimonies.  A miracle happened at her baptism, it was raining hard and as we were driving down the dirt road to the ocean the rain got even stronger.  It was raining throughout the program and then right as we walked in the water it stopped.  The waves were so huge, we had to jump when they came in so we didn’t get knocked down. It was a miracle and showed that God answers prayers and cares for us each individually, it was so amazing.  I just couldn't believe it.  
    On Sunday she was confirmed.  My companion baptized her and I confirmed.   I realized after I confirmed her that a lot of emphasis is placed on who baptizes but confirming is just as cool. I felt so guided by the spirit and the Tagalog just flowed, It was indescribable. I felt so happy and felt the spirit. I was so thankful to be able to participate in that ordinance.  It was a great experience on Saturday and Sunday.  
   On Monday we visited this family that was found in district finding.  They had prayed to be able to change and help their kids come close to God and then the missionaries showed up.  As they told us the story I felt the spirit and my joy cannot be described.  They are so humble and awesome. They even came to church and as they left they said "see you next week" (but of course they said it in Tagalog).  They are awesome and I am so thankful they were found by our district mates and now we have the opportunity to teach them.   We were also able to bless other investigators that were sick.  It was another amazing experience and I'm so glad that they had the faith to ask.  Earlier today we had a BBQ as a district because its transfers. I’m staying and my companion is leaving.  I'm excited but will also miss my companion.  We had lots of success together and a great time, it’s the Lord's will. It will be great.  Looking forward to another great transfer. love you guys and keep reading the Book of Mormon and looking for tender mercies everyday

Elder Snyder

Another great view



I think I'm doing it right

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

WEEK 42 : WALKING WITH NO PANTS / SWORD AT HIS SIDE

    Pretty good week. We did a lot. Last Tuesday we contacted a referral we received from church headquarters. The name of the person was really weird and we didn't know if it was a boy or girl but we went to find it because every referral is precious. We got off the van in the middle of nowhere and started walking.  We walked a few kilometers on this old road going through a rice field and actually found this person in the middle of nowhere, tender mercy.  It was a girl which means we couldn't teach if there was no male present and there was no male present so we talked but couldn't actually teach her. We gave her a pamphlet and book of Mormon and explained them briefly and then went back.  That took our whole day because of the travel and the walking and then the return trip but it was great because we were able to find her.  When we were walking down the road, everyone would stare at me.  I knew exactly what they were thinking.  They had seen foreigners before but never one that spoke Tagalog, so when I would speak to them they would get so happy and start laughing and so excited to talk to us. Everyone was so nice. We also saw a legendary mangyan(the natives here) he was just doing his thing and walking with no pants and an awesome sword at his side and a cool hatchet/axe in his hand.  It was cool.
    On Wednesday we visited the Tribucio and Magsino families. We explained their new member packets (something the mission gives them after they are baptized). They were excited and wanted to read all the stuff they were given.  Then President Koster was coming down for zone conference on Thursday and stopped by their house while we were there and talked with them and then he took my companion and individually and interviewed us. (he does an interview with everyone every transfer). Tribucio and Magsino live right on the beach so the interview was right on the beach with the ocean right there.  We just walked a distance away and there he did the interview, it was so cool.  We had to travel to the other side of the island for zone conference so we had to go home early so we could travel 1.5 hours to the couple missionaries and then rode with them the next day.  I can still feel the testimonies of the new converts burning within them and the happiness that the gospel brings families.
    On Thursday we had zone conference.  I learned so much. I have many new things I will apply to become a better missionary and it was also great to see the other missionaries of the zone because we never really see them because our area is so far away.  Our area is the farthest north and most of the missionaries are in the southern part of the island.
  On Friday  we did service.  We helped this guy make concrete manually and then lay it for his floor.  It’s hard to make it manually and then to scoop it and take it one bucket at a time to lay the floor.  It was hard work but really glad we could help this family out.  We were able to teach some progressing investigators.  I love seeing people come to understand the gospel and helping them come closer unto Jesus Christ. We then went to sister maribel enriquez and reviewed the baptismal interview questions.  She is so ready for baptism and excited.  Missionary work is hard but it is definitely worth it.
   On Saturday we were able to teach the Tribucio and Magsino families again.  We explained the temple and then really understood it and loved it.  I'm so excited for them to prepare to be sealed in the temple.  They have a goal to go one year from their baptism.  I am so thankful that we have temples and we can be eternal families.  The gospel really is true and as we look at the eternal destiny of families we can improve and we can become closer as a family, but we need to look with an eternal perspective.  Also on Saturday I was on exchanges with elder Ropati and he interviewed sister Maribel and she passed with flying colors.  She will be baptized on June 10, 2017.  Then we went to the van waiting terminal and got super unlucky.  To make a long story short we got there at 6:15 and the last van usually leaves around 630 but when we got there, there were no vans and all the ones that came were full so we had to wait 5 hours until 11pm and caught a bus and got home at 12:30.  Shows how hard we worked.   It was rough and we were so tired but we made it home safe and sound.  
   On Sunday we had another great fast and testimony meeting.  The newly baptized converts bore testimony and it strengthened my testimony.  They bore testimony of how the gospel has helped their family become happier and closer and they can see the blessings of living the gospel.  A couple of them testified of how they are so much stronger and can do more than ever because they are living the Word of Wisdom.  Like I said, their testimonies strengthened mine and increased my love for them.  The Lord is really blessing this area. Just like the Lord blesses missionary areas, He can also bless all of our lives. The key is to look for the small things, He does everyday. If He just gives us everything then we will never learn or progress but by small and simple things are great things brought to pass.  I encourage you all to look for the small tender mercies that are in our everyday lives. love you all.
  
Elder Snyder

Long road we walked on
The missionaries I came out with

He looks like my dog "Jake" from home

Thursday, June 1, 2017

WEEK 41 : BOXING IMAGINARY PEOPLE

  So last Tuesday we had a funny thing happen. We were in the middle of district meeting and its really hot here so we have the doors and stuff open to cool off a little and this member that’s Korean just walks up to the door pulls some boxing gloves out of his bag and starts boxing and punching imaginary people for like 30 minutes and then he just got up and left.  It was so funny, he didn't say anything, just did his thing and left.   Later that night we taught some good investigators.The main problem is they’re not married. It’s just so hard to get married on the island because you have to travel to all different parts of the island to get documents and then do all this stuff, but we'll help them.
   On Wednesday I had exchanges with elder Esurim, he’s so funny. We had a good day.  The day started with us going to a Seventh Day Adventist.  He wanted to talk about the Sabbath day.  Right after the prayer he opened up his bible and started sharing with us, we didn't bible bash but testified and explained.   It was alright haha and kinda interesting.  He was going all out.  We went back to the apartment for lunch after that lesson and when we left again we accidentally locked the keys in the house.  The apartment is like 15 feet wide.  It’s like a rectangle shape so it’s longer than it is wide.  We went to one side of the house where the window was unlocked and opened it and got a huge stick,  like 10 feet long and were reaching through the window,  but all the windows have bars on them so we can only reach our arm in.   The keys were on the other side of the apartment on the edge of the desk. haha I moved fans and tables and stuff out of the way with the stick and then moved a chair close to the desk and was barely able to reach the keys and knock them onto the chair and then still using the giant stick pulled the chair with the keys closer and then reached in and grabbed them.  Mission accomplished!   It was funny.
   On Thursday we taught the family member of one of our recent converts.  Our recent convert is awesome.  He was testifying and helping and it really made an impact. his relatives are awesome and hopefully can be baptized in June.  Then we taught another pretty good investigator but marriage is the problem for them also.  Then we taught a super progressing investigator named sister Enriquez,  she's awesome.  She regularly reads the book of Mormon and has a testimony and is so ready to be baptized.  She will be baptized in June.  She comes to church and loves it. She’s been an investigator for about 4 months here and is finally ready and has gained a true testimony.
    On Friday we did service at a high school here. It’s nothing like high schools in America,  just a few buildings, very simple.  We helped them paint the outside.  It was good but I got paint all over my clothes but later that night I scrubbed (of course there's no washing machine so hand wash) and was able to get it out, my hands were raw but it was worth it.  When we were painting we didn't have any poles so we used long bamboo poles.
    I studied Jesus Christ and His Atonement in detail this day.  I love learning about it so much. The amount of love He has for us is incredible and its so amazing that He atoned for us so we can become clean again and return to the presence of our Heavenly Father. I am so grateful for the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. I know that as we all come unto Him then we will fine peace in this life. John 16:33.  
    On Saturday we were looking for this guy that we had talked to that said he knew elders before.  Since missionaries are so new in the area we really wanted to find this guy but the address didn't really exist but we knew the general location.  We were walking down a street and boom he just happens to walk out of his house right as we walk by and says, "hey elders" and we were like "hey" and were able to teach him.   It was so awesome, such a tender mercy. I know the Lord is in charge of this work and He helps all of us. It was so cool to see His guiding hand in this work even if it’s just little things.  We then taught the tribucio and magsino families. They are the family of 12 that was baptized.  I love teaching them.  They are so awesome and always so happy.  They will be a strength to this area when it becomes a branch.  They also had kids that were able to go to district youth conference and it was such a good experience for them. They learned so much and made many great friends that are members.   We taught sister Enriquez again, she is so ready,haha . We taught here the 10 commandments and she was surprised to find out some of them and that they were actually a part of the 10 commandments.  She also made us a ton of food which was delicious.  
    On Sunday we had many investigators at church.  The people being baptized in June came and had a good experience.  We had recent converts help with sacrament which was cool, and the attendance in our area (where a branch isn't established yet) is getting close to some other branches.  The work is really moving forward and being guided by the Lord.  It was a great week. We had tender mercies and felt the Spirit. Having the spirit is so important, sometimes we become desensitized to His presence. I invite all to evaluate their lives and see if they are enjoying the presence of the Holy Ghost daily.  If yes, great. If no, then don't worry just pray and ponder what you can improve and you will see a difference in your life.  Sometimes we think that bad things are happening and then we get so caught up with our own lives that we forget God and the gospel.  If we put God first then all other things will become easier. He WILL strengthen us so our burdens seem light. Mosiah 24: 14-16.  I invite all to read this scripture and see how it can apply in their lives. I love you all and I  know God loves you.  Keep it up

Elder Snyder

Monday, May 22, 2017

WEEK 40: HANGING.... HALF RIPPED

  So last Tuesday I accidentally ripped my front pocket on my shirt.  It was just hanging there half ripped with my tag still on it,  it looked funny.  We taught this family and they were so great. They loved the plan of salvation so much. The mom said she was enlightened and she loves it. My companion and I taught so well.  It just flowed flawlessly  and  used scriptures by the spirit,  it all worked out great. They have real potential. 

    On Wednesday  we went to our recent converts that were just barely baptized and taught them and they had an immediate referral,  so we just walked to the referral and taught and he accepted a baptismal date,  so clutch.  This new family that was just baptized is excited and so awesome. I can see their testimonies growing.  We also taught another investigator that’s a preacher for another church, he knows the bible so well.  First he was hard headed but he's softening up but he still has a really hard time wrapping his head around the book of Mormon, but we're getting there, he's a tough investigator.  

   On Thursday we had district service again.  We went to this little elementary school and we helped them cultivate the ground to plant. It was hard work, also it was so so so so hot and we were out there shoveling and using a pickaxe and stuff.  I got so tired but it was great to help them.  They thought what they gave us to do would take 3 hours but we finished it in 1 which was pretty cool and we did it really well.  We taught some investigators the plan of salvation later in the day.  When we told them that the plan of salvation answers where we came from, why we are here and where we are going they got excited.  One sister said that she has always wondered about those questions.  It was so cool to see them understand and they asked such great questions. They are great investigators.   We taught another really progressing investigator, she’s ready to be baptized but she's the only one in her family that wants to be baptized but she realizes that she will be an example and said she'll do it.  She comes to church and reads the book of Mormon and even referred her friend who also has real potential to be baptized.  I'm excited for them. She said she loves the way she feels when she's at church, reading the book of Mormon and when we are teaching, which is cool.  The spirit is really working on her.    This member read our palms and it was pretty cool, but I will see if it comes true, ha ha. 

  On Friday we weren't able to catch a van to our area so we worked in our kabays area.  We taught some good investigators in their area.  

  On Saturday we taught another referral of our recent converts, his relatives.  They are awesome too. They also accepted a baptismal date which is awesome, they were so receptive.  Then we taught another family that was a referral of our district president and some have closed hearts but some have really open hearts but they are all so nice.  They just need some time.  Then we taught at sister Enriquez's house who is  really progressing along.  She invited some friends and we taught a bunch of new people and they have potential,  it was great.  Oh and we also have this chicken that lays eggs right outside our house and now there’ s 3 of them.  It will be cool when they hatch. It started with one egg and like every other day she lays another one.  

   On Sunday we had a great day.  Sister Enriquez and her friend came to church, and the relative of the recent convert and some other investigators.  The coolest part was that one of the recent converts blessed the sacrament with me and another passed.  It was so great to see them using their priesthood. They’re awesome.   
  This morning we went on a cool hike.  It was to a waterfall but its dry season so there wasn’t much water but it was still a good hike,  but also very hot.  It was a good week.
   I hope you all had a good week. I realized this week how much I love the Plan of Salvation and how amazing our Heavenly Father is. He really does have a perfect plan and He is there to help us every step of the way.  Ask and ye shall receive. Just invite Him into your life and the help will come. I love the Plan of Happiness and all the blessings and miracles of this area. I know that miracles can happen in all of our lives as we follow the commandments and draw closer to Jesus Christ and remember that He atoned for us and has a perfect knowledge of how to help us and He perfectly understands everything we feel and go through. Love you all so much. Have a good week. 

--
Elder Snyder







Monday, May 15, 2017

WEEK 39 : LEGENDARY!! HE STARTED TO WALK INTO THE OCEAN

  This week was amazing. I can't describe how awesome it was but I will try. I will focus on the baptisms.  

   So last Saturday we had our baptism party, 12 people were able to enter the waters of baptism in the ocean. It was incredible!!  We all met at where we go to church and then we had to use the senior couples van and some tricycles to get everyone to the beach to do the baptisms.   Once we got everyone there then we all had to change into our white cloths.  It was so cool to see the people being baptized all dressed in white. Everything was just working out and running smoothly.  They were all so excited and ready.  Our mission president also came to the baptisms straight from Manila.  He came because our area is looking to become a branch and so this was huge and he came to support.  It was awesome for the members and the people being baptized to see him.  We had an excellent program and then before we baptized we took a bunch of pictures.  It’s  one of the greatest pictures ever seeing everyone in white standing with the ocean at our backs.  When we said it was time to baptize, one of the brothers just started off walking into the ocean with rapid pace, he was so excited,  I  had to hurry and catch up.  He was just so ready to be baptized he left us all in the dust.  The water was so warm, it was the perfect temperature.  The water was shallow so we had to walk way out into the water until it got deep enough.  We even had to put other missionaries in white to witness because it was so far out.   It was so incredible baptizing in the ocean.  I just can't explain it good enough.  I was able to baptize 6 of them and then my companion baptized 6 of them.  It was like the waters of Mormon seeing them all walk out there and walk back.  I'm so grateful for this opportunity,  so incredible.  They were all so happy too, you could see it on their countenance!   Our mission president had permission to confirm the 6 males right there so they could receive the priesthood on Sunday.  It was my first time confirming and my first time blessing in Tagalog, it was so spiritual.   It was so cool to stand in the circle with my mission president and other great priesthood holders that attended. Such a cool experience.  I was able to confirm two people, my companion did two and our branch president did two.  Then they bore awesome testimonies and kept thanking us and the Lord and it was so cool. I love seeing the change in them.  The next day at sacrament meeting was a great experience too.  We confirmed the other six and I just felt the spirit shoot through me and it was amazing.  The spirit was so strong and everyone was so happy.  Then after sacrament we were able to ordain the men to the aaronic priesthood.  We ordained the dad first and then he was able to ordain his sons and his brother in law.  It was so cool.  This guy is named Pedritio Tribucio and he's the man.  He is the rock of the family and he has so much faith.  I whispered in his ear to help him ordain and then he gave awesome blessings to his family members.  It was funny because he blessed his son to find a wife haha.   The spirit was so strong and it was great for our other investigators at church to experience it.  This family is awesome and I love them so much.  I  am so grateful for them and the opportunity to teach and baptize them.  The Lord has a plan and this family was golden,  they were truly prepared by the Lord.  My explanation doesn’t do it justice but it was truly full of miracles. 

  On Monday(Sunday in Utah) I got to call home for Mother’s Day.  Shout out to my mom, I want to tell her how much I appreciate her and love her awesomeness. I love you mom!    So great to see my family, it was so refreshing and felt so good and made me realize how fast the time is going by. Feels like I just called.  I love them so much and am so grateful for my family. They are the best and that's the truth. (sorry to everyone else haha)  It was a legen-wait for it, hope you aren’t lactose intolerant because the second half of the word is-dary. LEGENDARY!!!!!!!!!  There’s nothing like being able to see them and talk to them face to face after a few months. It’s just surreal and awesome.  I love them so much.  I love it here and all the blessings that the Lord has blessed me with. He truly is in charge. I love you all and hope you all do good. 

Elder Snyder















Mission President in this picture