Monday, October 27, 2014

Basud October 27, 2014


As you know, I was transferred this week. I've finally made it up to Camarines Norte! I am in the Basud area with my new companion, Elder Bolambao. We cover just about all of the area from the Cam Sur border to Daet, if you know where any of those places are. The area is really different from any of my other areas because there are only about 20 people or so who go to church every week. We are just a group operating under the Daet 2nd Ward. I've just been meeting tons of new people here, and they all seem really nice. I think this letter might have to be short though because I am a little under the weather.

I think I will tell what happened last night, it is probably the best story. We went to the house of one of our investigator families, taught them a nice lesson about 1 Nephi 18 which was really good. Unfortunately, by the end of the lesson, it started pouring... We walked all over in the rain trying to find the people we were going to teach because they have a few houses. They ended up being in the last house we checked, and we almost decided to go home, because it was almost 8 and we were getting hungry, but we decided to go check if they were home, and were rewarded handsomely for it. Nanay brought out huge plates of pansit for us and hot chocolate and crackers. It was really nice, and we had a good lesson with their family. 

I know that the church is true and that God loves each and every one of us.

Elder Benjamin Merrill 

Ben's new companion is on right end

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

October 12, 2014


We had a great week here in Goa. There were definitely a lot of ups and downs. I think I will start with one of the downs. We actually had some of our new investigators seriously hide from us. They are in a pretty bad situation where they have trouble paying the rent on the house that they are living in. The person who owns their house is having the mother of the family work at his little eatery, which is right by their house. One day this week, when we went by their house (before we knew about the mother's new job at the eatery), and some guy out front told us that the family we were looking for was not home... It seemed kind of suspicious, so we decided to investigate further. The 14 year old daughter of the sister we were looking for was there and told us that she was at the eatery. We walk into the eatery and find our investigator sister hiding behind the door. We just got a bunch of excuses from her about being busy and stuff like that. We hope that she will at least find time for us to teach her one more time. 

The good news is that some of our other newer investigators are really doing well. They have started reading the Book of Mormon and just told us in their last visit that "habang binabasa nila yung Aklat ni Mormon, parang gumaan yung pakiramdam nila" Or that they felt a light, peaceful feeling while they read the Book of Mormon. It is really a wonderful thing to see a change in the people we teach. I know that we can gain a testimony if we do not have one or strengthen ours if we have one now by reading the Book of Mormon. 

I really enjoyed general conference this week. The one talk that really sticks out in my mind right now is by Elder Richard G. Scott from the Sunday afternoon session. I really liked the four things he mentioned that we can do to have peace in our lives. I know that as we pray, read our scriptures, have weekly family home evening, and go to the temple regularly, we truly will be able to have a peace in our lives through the Spirit of the Lord. 

I love you guys tons!

Elder Benjamin Merrill

The beach by Goa

Saturday, October 11, 2014



It's been another crazy week. This week, I got bit by a dog. We were walking up to the the house of the referral we were trying to contact. I thought the dog was nice... It didn't bite me until I was by the door for a few seconds. I think he was just trying to protect his owner.I got bitten on the leg and on my finger. I jumped when he bit me in the leg so I could get my leg out of his way, and then he bit my finger... It broke the skin on my leg and on my finger. I said 'Ouch!' really loud like 5 times. Super scary. The good news is that the dog might not have rabies. The plan is to watch it for  10 days. If the dog is still alive at that time, there's no rabies. I guess the dog was just as uninterested in us as his owner. 

Fortunately, we had some success in our finding as well. We were referred yesterday to some 17 year old girls who are going to school here in Goa. The whole 17 year old girl thing made us think that that they might be interested in a little bit more than the restored Gospel, but they actually turned out to be really looking for the truth. They had no trouble accepting a return appointment and a reading assignment. It was really neat. I feel like Heavenly Father is really putting a lot of people in our path. 

In other exciting news, we got some of our investigators to finally go to church. There is kind of a funny story that goes along with this one. We told them that we were going to go pick them up before church so we could all go together, so we thought they would be ready when we got there at about 12 pm. When we got there, they were all still asleep. They hadn't even woken up yet. We ended up waking them up. This story has a happy ending though because they ended up coming to church with us and we were only 2 minutes late for church. They seem like they really enjoyed church, so we are really excited for them. They have a baptismal date for November 1st

That's about all for this week. I love you guys tons, and I am super excited for general conference. Only one week left for us in the Philippines. We are lucky and get to wait an extra week for general conference. I know that the church is true and is led by real, living prophets and apostles. 

Love you guys tons!
Padangat ko kamung maray!

Elder Benjamin Merrill