Monday, August 29, 2016

Frying Hot Dogs in a Toaster


Yeah. Last night we ran out of gas in our apartment and were hungry out of our minds. We ended up frying hot dogs in a toaster. It works! It may take FOREVER but it works! And we also had some super spiritual experiences this week. We did a whole lot of door knocking (well.. shouting sometimes because there isn't really a door to knock on all the time.) But yeah we found a whole lot of people that have a lot of potential to be helped by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It's been such a blessing to be able to just meet new people and get to know their story and who they really are. 

So this week I studied about the importance of religion in any setting. Elder Jeffery R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (my man) gave an awesome talk last week about this topic. I realized that, obviously, as missionaries, no matter how much we try to share the Gospel with any set of individuals, it all comes down to the point where everyone chooses to believe what they want to believe, even if it's not what we missionaries believe. But despite that, the importance of religion remains in our lives, in our familial ties, social ties, and even civil ties.

"True religion, the tie that binds us to God and each other, not only seals our family relationships in eternity but also heightens our delight in those family experiences while in mortality." -Elder Jeffery R. Holland

But what I'm trying to say not only as a missionary, but as a 19 year old kid that has done a lot of self-searching in the past 16 months. If you really want to find peace and comfort in your life, religion is the key, and hopefully that religion is the Gospel of Jesus Christ (I'm a missionary. I'm obligated to say it, okay. :D) But even if you find that the gospel isn't for you, find God in your life. This is what will truly bind you, your family, and whatever you hold dear together. I love the Lord. I love being a missionary. I'm on top of the world right now (well not literally. I'm actually super close to the equator.) Hope you all had an awesome week. Thanks for all the emails and stuff. You're all the best.

-Elder Bondoc

It was my companion's birthday. We celebrated it on Monday. Elder Cortez is the man.
The Bishop's Fam.
The district this transfer.

​The whole hot dog ordeal. It was awesome. 

Monday, August 22, 2016

I'm Still Going to Be in Labo!

Hey World.

Life is good. This week was awesome. So first and foremost, I am NOT being transferred. I am SUPER duper blessed to get to work in Labo for another six weeks. It should be awesome and I'm super excited! Elder Cortez is still going to be my companion soooo yeah. We have a lot to do. This week we got the chance to work in Sta. Elena, a bayan that is about a 2 hour jeep ride from Labo. We met a whole lot of really nice people that are really interested in the message we have to say so hopefully missionaries will get the chance to serve there one day. There we saw this monkey that was missing a hand. I thought it was cool. I also forgot to tell you last week. Remember when that one lady asked me to spit on my finger and rub her child's bellybutton? Well the same sort of thing happened last last week. This grandma was holding a baby and she said, "Pa-usog sa paya niya kuya," which roughly translates to "Lick your finger and touch my grandchild's foot." My companion didn't hesitate and just did it. I soon followed. It was kinda weird. But whatever. It made the grandma happy. 

Anyway I learned how to be patient this week. Missions are fun and very, very enjoyable. I wouldn't take any minute back of it. But sometimes, or even most of the time, it gets tough. We have to step back, take a look at the bigger picture, take a BIG, DEEP breath, and then take on the challenge one step at a time. But I love what I do and will continue to love what I do until the end. I LOVE being a missionary. The black name tag brings so many blessings. And to some degree, rather than just enduring trials, I'd much rather enjoy them, wouldn't we all?

"Be patient in afflictions, for thou shalt have many; but endure them, for, lo, I am with thee, even unto the end of thy days." D&C 24:8

So yeah. It's inevitable. Life will be hard. But may we endure and enjoy until the end. I know that Christ will be with us every step of the way. Until next week everyone!

-Elder Bondoc

Yeah. I can't do the whole "take pictures seriously" thing.
The name tag. 
That one monkey that I mentioned

Sunday, August 14, 2016



Wait for it...



Without my parents (especially my Mom) I would be literally nonexistent. But luckily my mom gets to celebrate another fantastic year of life and my dad gets to celebrate another fantastic year of being married to my mom! (Because I love my mom a whole lot. Sorry, Dad. This just isn't about you, okay?) I hope you guys have an awesome day! You're the beeeeeessst!

So this week was AWESOME. Let me tell you all why. SO this week Elder Cortez and I got to do a little bit of adventuring. We got to take a two hour bus ride to another bayan in our area called Capalonga. This place has been untouched by missionaries for years now, so we figured it would be a good idea to see what was there and if it had any potential to progress. Literally every person we met showed some interest in us or were just nice enough to let us in and share a message. Such a blessing. We've seen so many miracles in our work this week. And I know the same will happen next week. 

Anyway, this week I had the chance to ponder about the idea of empathy and how in order to know and really understand someone, we must put ourselves in their shoes. It's hard sometimes, especially here in the Philippines. Coming from the other side of the planet, it is sometimes difficult to really understand what someone is going through. But that key trait is necessary in order to become a successful teacher. Christ was and is the perfect example of a perfect teacher. With kindness and love, he taught doctrine and counseled all his disciples how to become better. He even comforted the weary and healed the sick. So to some degree, we should show sincere love and empathy for those we meet and love. Through that they just might feel our love for them and more importantly Christ's love for them. 

"A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another" John 13:34 

This week we adventure in new territory... Santa Elena! It's another city in our area that is right on the border of a different mission. I'll let you know all about it next week. Thanks for the emails everyone! You're the best! Until next week!

-Elder Bondoc

Capalonga. (It's a play on words. If you understand Tagalog, you'll get it...)
Me, my companion, and the ward mission leader. 
It was a windy day, thus the rockstar hair. But I was stoked to find out that the ocean is in our area. 

​L A B O missionaries. Sorry my face looks... well... not normal. 

Monday, August 8, 2016

Boldness, but Not Overbearance

Hey Guys.

So it's hot. Like real hot. I was totally under the impression that it was supposed to be rainy season (which is it? I'm just confused..) but this week it ended up being super hot. I feel like all I ever talk about anymore is the weather... But whatever. It's worth talking about. I love it! Anyway this week was a good one. A lot of the barangays (neighborhoods) are having their yearly fiesta which essentially this annual party in which all the members of the barangay eat a lot of food and have a bunch of cultural activities and events which means... everyone's busy. BUT that's okay. In the Naga Mission, and more specifically in our companionship, we find ways! So this week was full of finding new investigators. It's good and I love it. 

Something I learned this week actually has to do with the importance of being open AND sensitive with everyone that we know. As missionaries, we teach according to the needs of every individual that we meet. We know that the Gospel of Jesus Christ applies to each and every individual on this planet. However, sometimes I feel that we all are either to bold or not bold enough in saying what needs to be said. Especially as missionaries, we face this challenge every day. Alma, a prophet in the Book of Mormon in Ancient America, gave advice to his son, Shiblon, regarding this matter. 

"Use boldness, not overbearance; and also see that ye bridle all your passions, that ye may be filled with love..." -Alma 38:12

SO may we all help those around us in boldness, but also in love. Missionary work is awesome. I'll talk to you guys net week. Thanks for the emails! 

-Elder Bondoc
I thought it was hilarious. We have our own office.