Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Don't listen to Satan

To all the people I love so much,

Gracious so this week. Satan is the worst, he is so stupid and so
annoying, but we can always overcome him and do the things that we
need to do. After the little problem last week with our ladies, we
went this week and we shared with them a scripture about prayer. There
was a verse that said they will help your overcome the temptations of
Satan and they all gasped, then said WE THOUGHT THAT WAS SATAN! They
said after we had left and they realised they still wanted to get
baptised they were wondering if it was just Satan telling them to do
that, and after we shared the scripture they knew it was. They are
awesome. Theres nothing better than when we do a drop by of their
houses and see them sitting with their pens and paper out reading the
Book of Mormon and taking notes. Our investigators are so converted
its amazing. Tuesday we had the interviews of the three and they were
all so nervous and practicing their answers, and all passed! The next
day we were back at their house and their friend who comes to church
with them but said she didn't want to get baptised yet was there.
She'd always refused to commit to a date until she saw how happy the
rest of them were. So we told her she could have her interview the
next day and get baptised on Sunday with them. She thoughts for about
one second and goes....yep. And were like WHAAATT and we all cheered
and fist pumped. Then after her interview we were all back there
celebrating again and one of the husbands came home, so were like
you're next, and he goes.....yep. And were like, WHAAAAAT! Fistpumps.
Plus after the baptism we were back there again, and focussed on
another one of their husbands. He said he wasn't ready to commit, and
afterwards we were talking about how he needed to live the word of
wisdom. So I said, if you give up coffee and alcohol now, you can get
baptised in a month, and he goes.....yeh. And again, for the third
time this week fistpumping like idiots so happy. This week. I don't
know what I've done to deserve all these miracles. We definately have
challenges too, we have investigators who want to be baptised but have
a lot of hard issues we have to work through first, so were blessed to
have these people too who just get it. We have six baptisms more
baptisms planned already for December which should all go through, and
then hopefully more as we work things out!

The baptism was amazing! Our recent convert of a month baptised the
four of them, and after it finished we all walked out to find these
rows of tables and chairs set up covered with plates of food for
everyone who was there. It was amazing. Our ward, I can't even begin
to describe how awesome our ward is. We then had Ward Counsel and took
a huge ice cream sandwich break in the middle. And when I say ice
cream sandwich I mean they brough out loaves of bread and tubs of ice
cream and we put the ice cream in the bread. Philippines.

So yes, my message to you is Satan is real, but the closer you get to
Heavenly Father the more you see how much he actually does for us. My
committment curse was in full force this week, where every time I'm in
the middle of a commitment something bad happens. A baby fell over and
smacked his head on the concrete, plus a huge bug flew into my eye and
died, a baby smashed a glass bottle on its food and four little kids
got into a wrestling pile up, all literally in the middle of me
extending important commitments. But I would literally pray, and at
the second I prayed it would all stop. Its real. Its like Heavenly
Father is standing next to me just waiting for me to tell him what to

Just don't listen to Satan. He thinks he can get you but he can't, as
long as you stand close to our Heavenly Father.

Love you all,
Sister McKim xx

Ok so, nobody is smiling in any of the photos, but they really are
hilarious and awesome people, just ignore that! Plus our ward
apparently had a parole making contest, lolololol, I've been laughing
about that ever since. Missionaries man, simple pleasures. Plus we had
a ward family home evening and we watched a church movie on a
projector. All of us sat back in the hammock and on the benches
watching a movie and eating popcorn. Truly the dream. In that moment,
man that was a new level of happiness. And also the baptisms, they
were happy too :-)

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Maging malakas

Ah family.

This week. Every week is a good week. I'm also learning that the
longer I'm out here the more challenging it gets, but its a good kind
of challenging that comes from loving the people and caring so much
about them.
This area really is the promised land. I pray every night and say that
I don't understand why I'm being so blessed but I'm gonna work so hard
to always be worthy of it. Sister Lainhart is awesome, I think we just
get each other. Before she arrived I was praying that the right person
would come here for these people, and I know she's it. Her Tagalog
makes me want to study harder, sometimes she understands things I
don't even get. Shes awesome. Plus we had 12 investigators at church
yesterday. We set at goal that we are going to have a baptism a week
for our time together, which is so achievable, and we're really gonna
do it. We had less actives come on Sunday that haven't come in years.
We're really making a difference here.
Our recent convert family are the world most solid fellowshippers.
Every time we go out to their area they come with us and end up doing
more of the teaching to their friends and neighbours. We have another
family getting baptised on Dec 7th and we get up there to teach them,
and our recent converts tell us that they already taught them about
chastity, word of wisdom and tithing. All of which they're completely
all for. Then both families - recent converts and investigators - come
with us to teach our other investigators about tithing and end up
teaching the whole lesson. Life is so good.
Except this one little moment. We have 3 ladies getting baptised
supposed to be this coming weekend. We went to their house on the
weekend to prep them for their inverview, we walk in and two of them
are sitting there and they say Sister, we're not going to continue.
They continued to tell us all their concerns and why they wanted to
wait, which mostly has to do with their husbands not being supportive.
I stood there in shock and agreed with everything they said and said
we could wait until they truly truly felt ready. Then we sat down for
the lesson just as the third one walks in. Since we now can't teach
the lesson we had prepared, we whip out a Restoration pamphlet and
start again at God is our Loving Heavenly Father and the Gospel
Blesses Families. We just ask them questions over and over about how
they feel God's love in their lives, how the Gospel will bless their
families and how they can be happier. It comes to my turn to share,
and I literally just broke. I cried and cried. I had no words to say.
At that point, I really felt like I understood them, and I understood
even just the tiniest bit the Atonement. We go in there every day and
tell them that their families are going to be together forever and
they're going to be so happy, and then they get sad and ask what
happens if their husbands never join. I just felt such sadness for
them because they just don't know whats going to happen, but despite
that they still know the church is true. Then passed it over to Sister
Lainhart, and even though shes only known them a week she cried, then
I cried more. Then after the lesson as we were leaving our recent
convert family cried together outside. The one sister who came in late
asks whats happened, and they explain they're gonna wait to be
baptised, and she reluctantly says she'll wait so they can get
baptised together. So on the way home our phone rings like literally
20 times. We finally answer it and one of them is yelling down the
phone saying WE WANT TO CONTINUE! WE'RE READY! The third sister
apparently had words with them and helped them realise that this is
what they needed to do. Words couldn't describe how happy I was. I
love those girls, we've been teaching them since like my second week
here so to see them finally make it is going to be incredible. The
next day their husbands came to church again and I can really see them
changing, they're starting to get testimonies. There's just one
husband who won't even look at us and I know it breaks his wifes heart
every day. This is why we work so hard - for these people.

Tapos theres this poor little family that lives in this little hut
that we pass every day. They have this tiny little girl that stands at
the end of the road and when we come she just goes morrrrrmonnnnss
mormonnnnssss over and over. The mum is always super shy and runs
inside when we walk past. Then the brother with us told us that when
she saw us the first time she cried and prayed because it was the
first time she had seen white people. Philippines.

K love you all, so much, this week I just really thought, I really
love everyone at home. But on the other hand, I'm not in a hurry to
get home.I only have like....not enough months left of my mission. Its
going way too quickly!

Be good. Be strong. Mahal ko kayo!
Sister McKim xxx

Monday, 11 November 2013

D&C 6:33

So first of all, we're fine.
But its bad news down in Visayas so if you're gonna pray for someone
pray for them, powers in and out but were being blessed beyond belief
here. Caught up with other missionaries from the jungle parts of the
mission and they haven't had water or power for weeks so were doing
really well here.

This week. Ah my goodness. This may have been my most spiritual week
of my mission. First of all we had 14 investigators at church.
Monday night we had a family home evening at the Ramos', our recent
converts of two weeks who are so awesome they just want to feed the
whole ward, which was perfect because its walking distance of all our
investigators. It had been postponed a bunch of times because of the
typhoons and finally Monday night. A brother in our ward talked about
his conversion, his wife was a member and the missionaries visited him
every week for ten years until he was finally baptised and only last
year were they sealed in the temple. It was perfect as all of our
investigators are women whos husbands aren't interested, and during
the lesson, one at a time all the husbands wandered down from their
houses and listened. I could see it really effecting them. We had less
actives come who hadn't been to anything for months, and our whole
ward really came together and just made everyone feel so happy. 
At the end, Sister S and Sister Q who were leaving the next day bore their 
testimonies and everybody cried, the spirit was so strong, and it really made 
So on Tuesday morning we had a party at the brand new 7/11 to say
goodbye to Sister S and I grabbed my temporary companion. We had
trainings until Friday when I met my trainee. She is awesome. Shes 22
this week, wants to work hard and reminds me a lot of me when I got
here. I know shes exactly who needs to be here to keep things going
with our investigators especially after I leave. Her name is Sister
L and shes from Idaho.
This week. Man I've never testified so hard. I was so determined to
keep the spirit going in these people until they just came to church.
I felt fluent this week, I just talked like I would in English and
never had to think about it. All week I would sit people down, get
their concerns out of them and make them resolve their own concerns.
It made SUCH a difference. People really opened up and started getting
really deep with me and then on Sunday morning, one by one they just
walked in. All the husbands of the women we were teaching came and
listened closely in church. After we went to their house armed with
our secret weapon, Brother Valdez, the gospel genius, and had a lesson
with turned into a huge testimonies. All of our investigators shared
their conversions, why they are so blessed in the church and we all
cried. I cried, in a lesson. First time ever. At the end, we turned it
over to the husbands and they said they really felt the spirit at
church and they will be back. Miracles on miracles. I can't even
describe it.
So in the coming month we have seven baptisms lined up which should
all go ahead smoothly, the only thing that would hold them back would
be if their husbands decide to get baptised now too. My brain is
overloaded this week because theres a lot on my shoulders right now,
especially with a companion that doesn't know anyone and can't speak
Tagalog, but I know everything will work out the way its meant to. I
just love the work so much, I just want this p-day to be over so I can
go and teach!

I love this work, I love the Philippines. And I love each and every
single person I teach. I truly feel that our success comes from being
obedient, down to the tiniest rules we always do our best. And loving
the people. These people are my family and I love them more than I
ever could have imagined. I love being a missionary and my biggest
worry is that I don't have enough time left.
I love you all, and thanks for you emails and concern.
Work hard, be happy.
Love Sister McKim

Monday, 4 November 2013

I'm having a baby!

So my favourite moment this week. We have this group of about 15 local
children that hang outside out house every day for us to come outside,
especially on Monday nights when they're all off school. We're getting
ready to leave, were psyching ourselves up for a big night and we walk
outside and these 15 children see us and start running and dancing and
cheering and singing, coming towards us! One little boy is doing
cartwheels, they shake our hands and as we walk away they wave goodbye
and dance off. It was like the opening scene of a musical. Like a
movie. Mission life. More glamorous than to be expected!

So I'm having a baby! Got the call on Saturday that Sister S is
being transferred into the jungle and I'm going to be training! I'm
actually so so excited. And humbled. Life here in San Nic was always
pretty great, now its about to change up, but I can't wait, this is
going to be a good week. And since birth and death always seem to go
together, as we've actually seen in real life, our dear roomie Sister
Q is going home this week, so change ups all over, but its all
going to be good.

So the other day we were trecking through the jungle as we do every
day, we'd just been taking pictures with someone so we were laughing
and Sister S is looking at her camera and two steps in front of
her is the LONGEST SNAKE I HAVE EVER SEEN! I scream and she stops just
in time for it to slither away into the jungle. We ran over to our
families house and told Sister and told her what it looked like and
shes like oh yeah, that ones poisonous. If it bites you you'll die on
the spot. I'm actually terrified for my life every day now, all the
snakes here are deadly apparently and were nightly walking through the
jungle in the pitch black. This is why we pray 400 times a day.
Brother R told us this story about when they went up to the
mountains to chop wood and this one stood up to his face and was about
to attack him, like anaconda size, and he just chopped his head off
with his machete. Then they ate it. Yeah they did! I love these people
man, they are the actual best!

In other news, we had the typhoon of typoons come through on Thursday.
We were trying to make some sort of Halloween and then it happened to
us. At night time the power would come in and out without warning. We
told stories by candlelight and then stayed up all night through the
worlds most terrifying storm. Our apartment is sturdy as so were all
good. Typhoons man. Legit Halloween. And Halloween here is Nov 1 where
everybody goes to the cemetary and have a huge celebration. They cook
food for the dead and leave it in their houses and someone has to stay
up all night guarding the food. The traditions are kind of cool,
everyone really gets into it. Apparently at the cemetery people were
getting possessed and speaking in tongues though, I'm not so keen on
that part of it.

I am so so so happy I'm staying here in San Nic, this is my home now
and if I could I'd just live here forever. We are definately loved and
have gotten to a point where we seem to be getting fed 2-4 times a
day. I'm trying my hardest not to get fat. Hardcore runs in the
mornings. Been doing a lot of praying for you all at home so I hope
everyone is good. Love you all and love my mission. Stay happy, work
hard, and help the work of salvation move forward every day!
Love Sister McKim xxx