Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Words from Eldr Ryder Nielsen in the Phillippines

"This week was very bitter sweet. I will start with the sweet. We had the baptism of Paulyn Chit she looked so happy along with her mom. I am grateful the Lord gave me the opportunity to help them in their lives. We are looking forward to the 21st of june for our next baptism. It will be a family of 5. They are progressing very well in the gospel. We are happy for them and it has been a blessing to teach them and show our love for them. One of the greatest impacts we have seen while teaching them the gospel has been the change of their 9 year old daughter Jennifer. When she was 7 years old she spent some time with her aunt in their province it was for about a month or so. In that period of time her aunt verbally abused her which destroyed her confidence and scared her emotionally and spiritually. Her aunt told her over and over again that she was ugly as a little girl and that she is supposed to be a boy. She cut Jennifers hair really short and made her wear boy clothes. When she returned to their home she refused to wear dresses or have long hair and she would act like a boy in all things. As we began teaching this family sister Alfaro, Jennifer's mother told us the story. When they came to church the first time Jennifer was wearing pants and a t shirt like a boy would. My companion and I encouraged her to wear a dress the next time. That week we would let Jennifer know how pretty she looked and encouraged her to wear girl clothes. The next sunday she came in a dress but as soon as church was over she ran to the bathroom and changed back into pants and a t shirt. We continued to encourage her and call her beautiful as we were teaching the whole family. Now she has no desire to wear clothes like a boy and she is acting like a girl and wearing girl clothes and wearing bows in her hair. My companion and I were over come with joy with her change of heart. Her Mom was the most surprised and grateful. I was so full of anger towards their aunt when i heard the story. Jennifer is the cutest little girl on the planet besides Ava Belle. I am grateful for her change of heart.

Now for the bitter...... Last last sunday i received a phone call from President Stucki at about 10 oclock pm. I could tell there was some thing wrong in the tone of his voice. He said he had bad news for one of our room mates Elder Dayacap. Elder Dayacap's father past away due to heart failure. I just want to give you some back ground information about Elder Dayacap. Elder Dayacap is from Tacloban he is a 3 year convert to the church and is the only member his family. He is really quite and he lacks confidence because he is a new member but his heart is pure and he has been serving faithfully. The other thing about him is he understands absolutely no english and he cant speak it either and that is the reason President Stucki called me. After he told me he told me that i needed to inform Elder Dayacap in Tagalog that his father had passed away and after that encourage him to stay on his mission. When i heard that my heart dropped. I couldnt even imagine what his reaction would be after hearing that kind of news. I prayed with my companion that the Holy Ghost would guide my words. I brought him into our room and shut the door. After I told him his Father passed a away he began to cry and express to me how he wanted to go home and teach his Father the Gospel. I stood and gave him a hug and bore my testimony of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the plan of Salvation. I encouraged him to stay on his mission. It was quite for a long moment and then he said i want to stay and finish my mission. He said he knew it wouldnt change anything if he went home. After that experience it has left me to count my many blessings. I remember feeling down about the trials that i am facing at this time but after this experience it has made me grateful for the circumstances that i am in. Elder Dayacap is doing well we are helping every day. And to be honest he seems really happy. That is what the Gospel does brings us joy and happiness in times of tragedy and uncertainty."

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