Friday, June 30, 2017


  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"


Sunday, June 25, 2017


   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


   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


    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


  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