Sunday, April 10, 2016

Re: Week 52 Pictures

1. The Mabuhay House
2. Mabuhay
3. My favorites at the Mabuhay house
4. One year later. I entered the Philippines MTC on April 10 last year. Who would've known I'd be here again.
5. The Pearl Market in Manila. Wow.

Week 52 Pictures

1. We went to this foundation on Tuesday called the Mabuhay House thats kind of like a hospital and we got to play with children and sing to them and play the ukulele. I loved it.
2. One of the little girls at the mabuhay house
3. Mabuhay House
4. Jonna Mae. I love her.

Uuwi Na Ako

Last Monday was the hardest day of my whole life. 

Halfway through my email time, I get called downstairs by the doctor. I go down into his office and he starts telling me how the treatment for what I have will take months, we live in a third world country with horrible medical care, and that I can't really live a missionary schedule because of it. Reality sets in and he tells me there are three options. Either I choose to go home to get better and rest up before I start school in the fall, or I stay here for two weeks and they can't figure out whats wrong with me and they send me home, or they send me back to the field and I just go on feeling the same way I do now except it will probably get worse. I was in tears. I never realized it could or would go this far. But at the end of the day, I know that I'm not well enough to be a full-time regular missionary. I feel sick when I go outside. I'm sick. I can't work like a missionary should because I'm physically unable. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. He told me to pray about it and get back to him. 

I left his office by myself to walk back upstairs and Elder K, a senior missionary in charge of the MRC, sees me crying and stops me. He pulls me into his office and has me tell him everything the doctor said. I keep crying. He tells me the same thing and tries to comfort me but I'm just in turmoil. He tells me I need to pray about it. But I did. The night before, Sister Delgado and I sang hymns, and I prayed the hardest I've ever prayed in my whole life. I felt something, but I was too stubborn to admit it. I denied it and went on thinking I'm going back to Legazpi. I straight up lied to Sister Delgado when she asked me how I felt after the prayer. I fought it SO hard. I was a nuisance. But the Spirit softened my heart in the meeting with Elder K and I was kind of gripping things.

I can't deny the peace and comfort I had felt the night before when I asked our Father in Heaven what His will was for me. I finally told Elder K of that experience and we talked through it and I decided that I'm going home. The decision to go home is harder to make than the decision to stay. I would've never wanted this. I wanted to serve for 18 months, but the thing is, this isn't my mission. It's the Lord's. He's only asking one year from me. I will never be able to deny the feelings and the comfort I felt as I prayed to Him and as things have come together.

But even with such a spiritual influence, I got scared and doubted myself. President Guanzon called me and we talked. I asked him if I could come back and finish my mission and maybe work in the office or something if I had to. He said we could figure something out. I go back to my email thinking I'm going back to Legazpi. Then Elder K comes up to me with an email from President Guanzon that says I'm going home. I cry again and I'm freaking out. Elder K simply said something along the lines of how I can't keep going back and forth and I need to make a decision. That's when I asked for a priesthood blessing.

We go into Elder K's office and he gives me a blessing. The first thing he says in my blessing is how my Father in Heaven and Savior love me. The Spirit filled the room. He goes on speaking and says that my answer will be found in my patriarchal blessing. He gives one of the most beautiful blessings I've ever received and closes. Of course I immediately run to my room and pray again and read my patriarchal blessing. I have never cried so hard in my whole life. Sister Delgado walks into our room and asks me what is going on. I tell her through sobs and we both look at my patriarchal blessing just laying on my bed. I already know my answer. I had read about halfway through my blessing at this point, but I already knew what the answer was. My answer is found at the end of my blessing. I quoted it to Sister Delgado without even reading it and I felt the strongest peace in my heart. The Spirit was so strong. At that point, I just submitted. I know this is God's will. You can't fight His will.

I'm sick of being afraid of what people will think when I go home. I'm sick of caring what other people think at all. I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I have given everything I have to my mission. The Lord is proud of me. I have served and completed the mission that the Lord wanted me to serve here in the Philippines. Now, I'll just go home and I'll never stop being a disciple of Jesus Christ and I'll never stop sharing the Gospel because I have been truly converted in the past year. I'm never leaving. God has a plan. I know, for one reason or another, I need to be home now. This is just my new mission call.

The MRC has been a blessing in that I've been able to get a grips more and be able to understand what's actually going to happen. I've been able to do a few sessions in the temple and spend a lot of time in the scriptures. General Conference was the icing on the cake. Everything is just giving me peace since that day I decided. I know this is God's plan. I'm ready to just submit my will to His and focus on just that.

At this point we're just waiting for the country to release my visa and passport so that I can fly home.

Thank you to everyone for your love and support throughout my mission. I've absolutely loved my time in the Philippines and all of the things I've learned here. I've fallen in love with these people and I've changed so much here. I love my Savior and my Father in Heaven and I'm beyond grateful that I did get a year to be a missionary for Them.

Mahal kita!

Sister Wilkins

Pictures Week 51

making cookies for the first time in over a year... yay ovens!

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Thrilla in Manila Part II


My life is completely different since I last emailed. So much has changed.

It started out on Tuesday morning getting a text from Sister Guanzon telling me to pack everything and that they were sending me to the MRC. The MRC is in Manila, the "Missionary Recovery Center" and it's the only one in the world. Basically when missionaries are sick here in the Philippines, they get sent to the MRC to do testing and treatment to help them (ya know, because the medical care here is less than satisfactory). So I packed. And waited. I didn't here anything else until I bugged the AP's and they told me they were bringing Sister Delgado to my apartment that night and that we would be going to the MRC together. She has some medical problems going on right now as well. When Sister Delgado got to our apartment, she told me our flight was scheduled for Thursday morning.

So Wednesday I went on exchanges with Sister Haag. She's from California and she's one of the best missionaries I've ever met. She was very patient with my sickness and my inability to work very much. We talked a lot and it was an incredible exchange. She taught me a lot of things that I needed to hear at that time.

We got picked up early Thursday morning by the office elders and went to the airport. Worst airport experience ever. We go through security and everything and are just waiting, when they announce over the speaker that our flight has been cancelled. Due to weather. So everyone is freaking out and we wade through a sea of Filipinos to get to the desk to reschedule our flight. It was insane. We somehow managed to get them to allow Elder Dalit to come in and fix our flight even though they're typically not allowed to come in. Sister Delgado may or may not have pretended she couldn't speak Tagalog to get that to happen... haha. So, after LOTS of waiting, we finally get a flight booked for Friday afternoon. We spend the rest of the day in the air conditioning in the mission office and sleeping in the Daraga sisters' apartment.

Friday we get to the airport and guess what... our flight is delayed. The 2:25 flight became a 5:15 flight. Welcome to the Philippines. But, we met a family of members in the airport. They are from South Jordan I believe and the dad works in Manila in the embassy and it was so cool to meet them and actually speak in English for once. It was such a good conversation talking about all of the culture differences and quirks of the Philippines. Finally we landed in Manila and we ate at COLDSTONE. Yeah. I am deprived. Our driver, Pilo, was very grumpy during the drive to the MRC so that was no fun. We got to the MRC at about 9:30 and we meet all of the missionaries there. Elder and Sister Kasteler are the senior couple running the place. Right when we get there, Sister K sits us down and gives us a muffin. I'm just thinking "I like this place" haha. not much else happened, I just had culture shock from being in civilization, and we slept.

Saturday we got to go to the temple to do service. We folded laundry in the basement for about two hours, went back to the MRC and ate chili, then went back to the temple to do an endowment session. It's been almost a year and it was the greatest thing of my whole life. I. love. the. temple. I never realized how blessed I was to have a temple 20 minutes from my house all throughout growing up.

Sunday we went to church in a ward under Quezon City Mission. It was the most spiritual sacrament meeting ever. There were incredible testimonies and I was bawling through the whole thing. The members were so kind and sweet even though they didn't even know us. We got to watch a little part of General Conference later that day and it was INCREDIBLE. President Eyering's opening talk was absolutely incredible and I definitely receive lots of answers to questions.

The MRC is an incredibly spiritual experience in itself. I've learned so much and I've met some incredible people. We're just trying to figure out my migraines and letting me rest. I'm very grateful to be here, it's definitely part of God's plan for me. I love the Philippines and I love being a missionary. I have complete trust in God that it will all work out. I've been given some incredible priesthood blessings and some amazing counsel. I'm grateful for this trial, because I've learned so much and grown so much. I'm incredibly blessed to have Sister Delgado here with me experiencing all of this. That's definitely a tender mercy.

I love you all and I hope you have a great week! Never forget that God is in charge, and everything will work out!

Mahal ko kayo!
Sister Wilkins

Re: Pictures Week 51

1. I missed the temple
2. again
3. I'm orange thanks to Sister Delgado's camera
4. yeah. print this one out and frame it.
5. Polaroids

Pictures Week 51

1. On the plane
2. After the cancelled flight.. before we left for the airport the next day
3. waiting at the airport
4. Bye, Legazpi

Monday, March 28, 2016

MIRACLES > trials

Hello all and welcome to another episode of "Sister Wilkins is sick"

That has been my week. haha. So for those who don't know, last year, before I left on my mission, I started getting what is called "complicated migraines". Basically it's migraines, but they're complicated to explain.. haha.. hence the name. But anyways, a year ago I was given medication, and it solved the problem. Fast forward to now, I've grown immune or something and the migraines are coming back. But this time, there's no headache, just all of the other side affects. like dizziness, shakiness, and all over just not feeling right. So I've been to a million doctors (ok, maybe that's an exaggeration. I've been to 4.) and everyone seems like they know what they're doing when they say "whatever it is, it's not what my specialty is". I've been given medicine from a neurologist, and so far, it's not really working. Sister Guanzon has said if we can't figure it out, she'll send me to the Missionary Recovery Center in Manila to figure it out. I've had two priesthood blessings and I've been promised that I'll return to health, so no worries.

So, Monday was checkups all day. Then Tuesday, checkups. The rest of the week was lots of resting. And also we had an early curfew for three nights because it was holy week. All I have to say is Catholic traditions scare me. But we did get to teach a few people. I miss the people. I hate doctors.

Wednesday we went on exchanges. I worked with Sister Pajaro and she is one incredible missionary. I got to teach Iza's sister, Gie, who lives in their area. Sister Delgado and I referred them to the missionaries when we first became companions forever ago. We got word last night that Gie has finally gotten permission from her husband and she'll be baptized on Saturday. I'm SO excited for her!! So I got to hang out with the Daraga sisters and have a sleepover and teach a family I already love! Exchanges are so fun.

Thursday after our district meeting, Bishop took us all out for lunch at this buffet by the airport and it was amazing. Then we got to teach Ester. We've finally located her membership records and she is in fact a member! haha. She was asking me what my first name is and she wrote it in her Book of Mormon and said to me "I'll never forget you, sister. You're the one who brought me back." I basically was crying inside. Guys. I love being a missionary. It's so hard. Sometimes you just want to give up. But the PEOPLE are what make it so worth it. Every person you get to help even in the smallest way is what makes it ALL worth it.

I have to tell y'all a little story about my favorite investigator. Yes, I have one. She's golden. Her name is Kate. When I first got to Legazpi, I tracted her house. She didn't let us in. She came to church three weeks ago with a member, and then last week again she came with her boyfriend who is a less-active member. We've been teaching her this week and can you say GOLDEN? First lesson, we invite her to be baptized and she says "of course I'll be baptized! I have to be baptized first if I want to get married in the temple!" I was just not believing my ears.. haha. She is SO PREPARED to receive the message of the Gospel. She's only 17 years old but she's SO ready. When she prays, she asks Heavenly Father to make it so we can teach her everyday. She said after our first lesson, she knew she wanted to be baptized, but she wasn't sure if she'd be ready by the date we extended to her. She went home and it was a few days before we taught her again. She said every movie she watched, everything she did, she thought about it and found ties in the things she was doing to our message or to the church in some way. The second time we taught her she said it was way too long to wait three days to be taught again. haha. I love her. I see some very good things coming!

So, all in all, even when there are challenges, the work never stops, and it was still another incredible week as a missionary! It's actually kind of a blessing, everything going on with my health, because I literally have to spend every day and every lesson in Legazpi like it's my last, because I really don't know what's going to happen. Whatever does happen, I know it will be according to God's plan, and I'm willing to just do what He wants me to do. I'm so grateful to be a missionary and for every day that I get to put on this name tag, especially during this Easter season. I'm so grateful for my Savior and for the perfect love He has for us and for the sacrifice that He gave for us. Not only did He die for us, but He lived for us. And He lives for us. 

"He lives, and while He lives, I'll sing"

I love you all, have a great week!

Sister Wilkins

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Sunday, March 20, 2016

The Week in which I am now 20 years old


So my birthday was GREAT! Sister Matulac decorated my bed with ribbon and signs and she got the other sisters to come in and wake me up singing happy birthday (she actually woke me up when she was decorating because the tape was making noises, but don't worry, I pretended to still be asleep... haha bless her heart..) We went about the day as normal, but when we got home for dinner I noticed an extra pair of shoes outside and when we opened the door, there were too mattresses on the ground and a blanket that was a little too familiar... Sister Delgado and Sister Davocol were hiding behind the door. They had to come to Legazpi for a checkup and it was the best birthday surprise ever! We got to teach Fred and Iza with them and Fred freaked out when he saw Sister Delgado and it was so funny. The last picture I sent was unfortunately the last picture my camera took.. Hitomi dropped it and broke it. THIS IS MY 4TH CAMERA ON MY MISSION. ugh. (but it has a warranty and they said it will take one month to fix... ugh) That night we stacked oreos on top of each other with peanut butter and put my candles on it and they sang happy birthday to me. It was a good birthday.

Tuesday I got to go on exchanges with Sister Jimenez! I missed her so much! We went to dinner with Sister Delgado and Sister Davocol to celebrate my birthday and it was so much fun. Sister Jimenez left this morning for Manila and tomorrow she flies to Utah. She's gonna be incredible.

We had Zone Conference this week and it was so great! I got to see Sister Routhier and Sister Hunt (but no pictures because no camera... AGAIN) and a bunch of other missionaries that I love. That night the Mulligan Couple came and worked with us. They're teaching me "proper English" a.k.a, I talk in a British accent with them. They love me. haha.

Our investigator Angel who is 10 years old came to church all by herself. she said she went at 5 am but no one was there... haha she was excited! I love kids. She lives really close to the chapel so she can just walk.

This week was full of miracles and great experiences, especially a really great birthday. I can't believe I'm 20. I'm so old.

I love you all and I hope you have a great week!

Sister Wilkins

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Tracting and more tracting


It was a GREAT week! Tracting tracting tracting and we eded up picking up 22 new investigators. It was CRAZY. haha but SO much fun! I love my new companion!

One night we went to some recent converts house and we helped their grandma peel Mongo so that was fun and then we got to teach them. Their grandmother doesn't live there but she's been a member since the 1970s and she's adorable. I love old people.

We had a miracle happen. Recall to your memory a story I told about Sister Michelle who we tracted in like November when I first got to Legazpi. I clicked so well with her right of the bat and I never cry in a first lesson. So she texted us two transfers ago and said she was going to Manila and she never answered when we asked when she'd be coming back. So when we changed the areas, I kind of thought her neighborhood was in the AP's area. So on Friday night we were walking home after teaching Fred and I see the sign for her neighborhood and I realized that she was still in our area and practically flew down the road to her house. I just wanted to see if she was there. Sure enough, she comes to the door in the middle of dying her hair and she lets us in and tells us she just got home on Monday and she told us everything that's going on and we were able to set a return appointment. I AM SO HAPPY. I cried tears of joy as we left her house. God is good.

We have a million children that love to come join our lessons in one neighborhood and on Saturday we spent the whole afternoon going to each of their families houses and teaching them. Last week their families weren't too keen on letting them come to church, but since we taught their families, 4 of the kids came to church on Sunday. They are so cute. I love kids. After sacrament meeting they wanted to go home, so they walked by themselves home. I was saying the opening prayer in Gospel Principles class when one of them opened the door and got my attention.. haha they had come back because they were scared of someone outside. So we walked them home and are all hot and sweaty when we get back into gospel principles for the teacher to call us up to teach. then we get out of that class and the kids have come back AGAIN. haha. They wanted to go to primary after all. It ended up being a great experience because we got to attend primary with them. Primary songs make me cry. haha.

Sister Infante's trainee is named Sister Albert and she's from Micronesia and I love her. I love being the only one who can actually speak English with her... hahaha. But I struggle with English now... especially if we're trying to teach in English. yeah, no.

Other than that, same old same old. We're doing a lot of finding and a lot of teaching. Just trying to find the elect.

Have a great week! Me and my companion are both turning 20 this week and we've got lots of great things coming up! I'm excited!

Mahal Kita!

Sister Wilkins

Monday, March 7, 2016

Re: Week 48 Pictures

1. Children we teach
2. Dinner with the Dorosan family
3. Bye-bye Sister Jimenez
4. Hello to my new companion!

Re: Week 48 Pictures

1. With Sis. Routhier again :D
2. I keep getting hurt.. haha
3. Elder Torrano drew me!!
4. I wish I could draw...

Week 48 Pictures

1. cuuutee
2. Philippines colors
3. i love them.
4. The water went out (like it always does), but hey, girls have got to get clean somehow


Hiiii. This was literally the craziest week of my entire mission. And probably life.

Monday we had our zone activity and that night we had FHE at Fred and Iza's house. It was the funnest thing of my life. That night, Sister Delgado and Sister Routhier show up at our apartment for MLC the next day and it was SOO good to catch up with them.

Tuesday we got put in a trio with Sister Davocol and it was way fun! We got to get ice cream with Sister Routhier and Sister Araneta and then Sister Routhier and I talked forever that night. It was so good to be able to talk to her again. She said she's having a hard time to her and I just bore my testimony to her about the Savior and we cried together and it was one of the most spiritual experiences of my mission. I love my anak.

Wednesday night I got to work with Sister Routhier in our area. She had to be in Legazpi for some medical checkups. It was so good to see how much she's progressed and how much better she is now. I miss her a lot.

Friday we had Zone Training and I was just kind of pessimistic the whole time because we only focus on numbers but that's gonna change... because President Guanzon called me that night and told me that I'm the new Sister Training Leader in Legazpi. All I have to say is things are going to change. I'm sick of being in a mission that only cares about numbers... things are going to be different here if I have a say in it.. haha.

Saturday night transfer announcement came in. Sister Jimenez is transferred to Guinobatan. It's within our zone, so I get to do exchanges with her! She leaves for Utah on the 22nd.

Sunday we had a really awesome Stake Conference and a bunch of our zone members came up to me individually and told me exactly what I was saying about how we only focus on numbers. They asked me if I could change it. haha. I agree 100% and I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed!

Monday was Transfer Day (hence why I'm emailing on a Tuesday). My new companion is Sister Matulac and she's from Manila. She's coming from Sorsogon, and she's a brand new STL as well so we're just a little bit stressed... haha. But I absolutely love her already. She's just what I need right now. She's so Christlike and happy all the time! It's gonna be a good transfer! We FINALLY taught the Adana family last night after a few weeks and Sister Catherine got a new job so hopefully she'll be able to attend church and actually be available now. Good things are coming. I can feel it.

Love you all! Have a great week!

Sister Wilkins

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Sister Blue

Hello from the other side... uh... I mean Hi. That song keeps playing on the jeeps and it's always in my head.

So this was a crazy week. On Monday one of our investigators texted us and was telling us her daughter was in a lot of pain in her stomach and lots of things. We were texting between them and Sister Guanzon all night,and eventually in the morning they go to the hospital and the girl's got appendicitis. It was scary, but luckily she's all okay now! Thank heavens for missionaries, right?

Early Tuesday morning, Sister Jimenez left me for Manila to have an interview at the US Embassy. I was in a trio all day Tuesday and half of Wednesday with our STLs Sister Infante and Sister Matthes. It was actually really fun but I missed Sister Jimenez and I wasn't even mad when she got back. Rather relieved. We worked in the STL's area and I got to visit some of their recent converts that I LOVE. We also taught this less active lady named Elsa. When we got there, they were trying to get her to guess my name and saying "it's the name of a water bottle brand here" and she kept saying "absolute? Aqua? etc." and finally Sister Infante says "the label is blue" and then we just tell her my name and move on. She prays at the end in English and says "thank you for these missionaries who came to teach me. And their names are Sister Infante, Sister Matthes, and Sister Blue" and continues her prayer while the three of us are cracking up and trying not to let her know we're laughing.

Wednesday morning I went on splits while the STLs were on exchanges until Sister Jimenez got back. She wasn't feeling well, but being the trooper she is, she wanted to go out and work anyway. We taught Sister Ester, the Less active we tracted, and she was TAKING NOTES. God has a plan, guys. I can't believe how much she's progressing and all because we just randomly knocked on her door one night not knowing she was a member already.

A few weeks ago we ran into this guy named Lester at a store and he said he was taught by missionaries about a year ago but they just stopped visiting him. We got his address and turns out he's in our area. We taught him and his family twice this week and turns out he's related to a few of our members and our investigator Emz so there's lots of potential there! I'm excited for that!

On Saturday we had a Ward Family Home Evening at the chapel and it was SOO fun even though very few people showed up because it was also raining buckets. I have some new games to teach y'all.

Basically it was just a really good week and passed by like... something really fast. Sister Jimenez could be leaving me for Utah any day and this is the last week of the transfer. I'm freaked out time is going so fast, but I'm excited for the coming transfer!

Mahal Kita!

Sister Wilkins

Sunday, February 21, 2016



So this week was good!

Sister Jimenez got a really bad stomachache one night and we had to go to the hospital in the morning to get it checked out. They gave her medicine and she ended up being fine, but I was a worried kasama. She's such a trooper. She couldn't sleep the whole night and she told me she repented of all of her sins while she couldn't sleep. hahaha. I love her.

On Friday while we're in Personal Study, the Supply Elders show up to our house with Sister Roque and Sister Davocol. Sister Roque has really bad scoliosis and she had a half stroke one night, so she has been sent home to rest and will hopefully return in a month or two. On Saturday we were in a trisome with Sister Davocol and it was so great being with her! She is a way good teacher! Also we were walking from an appointment with her and the sidewalks here are like removable (if that makes sense, like there's the structure and then like a cement lid over it so they can access the sewer) and I walked on one that is broken and I tripped and fell and scraped up my entire right leg. haha. Sister Jimenez is like a girl scout or something and had a million bandaids to help me survive, but I was just laughing. And literally everyone around was staring at me. I swear when I do something to draw attention, it's ten times worse because I'm white. I'm so clumsy.

Sundays in Legazpi Ward are just the best every time. Henry came to church and he's on track to be baptized on March 12th! One day the other week we tracted a house randomly when some appointments fell through and we've gone back a few times, and Sister Ester came to church on Sunday! In Gospel Principles she was asked to tell how she came in contact with us. She said she was baptized about 20 years ago and then became completely inactive. She moved here and attended church a few times but then stopped. She said she used to see us walking around all the time and she thought to herself that she wished we would come and teach her. Then, we tracted her house and thus the return to faith began. She said it feels like she's coming home. It's so incredible as a missionary that the Lord leads you wherever you need to go. I'm still amazed. The chances that that would happen. The Lord really has a plan for each and every one of His children.

In other news, on Sunday a cute little boy ran up to me after church and handed me a rose and said "para sa'iyo" which means "for you" and it was the cutest thing. They were left over flowers from our ward conference.

Anyways, I love you all and hope you have a great week! Happy Birthday, Kate!

Sister Wilkins

Re: Week 46 Pictures

1. DIY burgers in our trisome
2. Casey <3
3. Hi.

Re: Week 46 Pictures

1. I love Legazpi
2. again.
3. Ethan Paras. I love.

Monday, February 15, 2016

President Russell M. Nelson Visit :D

Hello People!

What a week, what a week. President Russell M. Nelson came, saw, and definitely conquered.

It's been real swell out here in Legazpi City! We had choir practices all week and it was almost as good as high school choir (ok not even close but man I miss choir). I was pretty stressed though because I our original song was I believe in Christ, and then we decided to change it to Abide With Me. We practiced the latter until Friday, and then we get told that we have to change our song to Abide With Me; Tis Even Tide because the area office got it wrong and had already made the program. I died. So we learned both and they sounded alright, but there was definite room for improvement. I was getting sick on Sunday night with a cold and I was terrified that I was gonna lose my voice and not be able to sing, but miracles happened.

On Sunday President Nelson was coming to do a YSA devotional and we got permission to go. So we go way early and get good seats, then we eventually get moved back, then into a room where they're doing a broadcast, and then we get kicked out all together. I was only slightly upset because as we're waiting, a bus full of San Vicente Branch from Bulan gets there. I got to see so many of the branch members and it was SOOO good. Except I unfortunately didn't get a picture with any of them.

Yesterday was the greatest day ever. We got up early to go practice for the choir and we being the choir got front row seats and it was just great. President Guanzon lines us all up outside to take a big group photo when the van with President Nelson gets there. It was surreal seeing him in real life.  We take a picture and then we all line up single file to shake his and Sister Nelson's hands as well as Elder Ian S. Ardern of the Seventy and his wife. The Spirit was just so strong as I shook their hands. He is truly called of God. We finally all get settled and President asks us to sing Abide With Me, our original song, as prelude. I get up there to lead and President Nelson and I make eye contact and he gives me this huge grin. It was so cool. Then we sit down, President Guanzon conducts the opening excercises, and the choir stands up again to sing Abide With Me; Tis Eventide. It was flawless. We sounded about five million times better than we had just that morning. Angels were singing with us. I was nervous because I can't really lead that well and I've got this cold, but everything worked out just great! Sister Guanzon gets up and bears an incredible testimony and said our song made her cry. Then President Guanzon, Sister Ardern, Elder Ian S. Ardern, and Sister Nelson all speak. I'm crying through the whole thing. They said so many things I needed to hear. Then finally President Russell M. Nelson stands up and answers all of my prayers with incredible scriptures and everything. He talked about the Doctrine of Christ and our Patriarchal Blessings and family history and he left and apostolic blessing. He shared an incredible story about two little girls that he did surgery on 58 years ago who passed away, and he said a year ago, they came to him in a dream and told him they weren't sealed to anyone and they needed his help. He found that their mother had passed away and their father had become anti-Mormon. Through missionary and ward help, the family was sealed just this past November. I sobbed through the whole thing, and being in the front, Elder Ian S. Ardern kept looking at me and probably wondering why the heck I was crying so much. haha. i just wish you all could have been there and felt the power in his words and his blessing. It was an incredible day. There's too much to ever be able to write. As they were leaving, President Nelson stops in front of the choir and says to us "the choir was just elegant". Yeah.

Unfortunately we weren't allowed to take pictures, but the Guanzon's son in law was able to take all of them and they should be emailing them soon. So who knows when we'll get that. Basically my life is amazing and it was such a good week!

I love you all!! Happy Late Valentines Day!

Sister Wilkins

Re: Pictures Week 44

1. hahahaha. Sister Jimenez is a good photographer. And I'm sick.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Fasting works.


This was an incredible week.

I got to be reunited with Sister Routhier on Monday because she just got called as an STL and they had MLC here in Legazpi on Tuesday so she got to sleep over two nights! We talked for a very very long time. I miss that girl, but I'm so proud of her. I'm a proud mama. Also Sister Delgado got to come back for a night so that was a good reunion.

Our main focus right now is on the Adana family. They have a baptismal date for March 5 and they are progressing! I'm absolutely in love with this family! Brother hadn't come home for a week and Catherine didn't know where he is, but he finally came back and the whole family's almost complete minus the one daughter.

Sunday was the greatest day of my life. We were fasting and we picked up the Adana family for church. We get there way early and they're really excited because their daughter is being fostered by one of the members and they were going to be able to see her that day. It was such a wonderful reunion when Princess saw her mom and ran to her and gave her the biggest hug. I cried. Church begins and our investigators start trickling in. We had six come. I then have to stop myself from yelling out loud in surprise as Sister Mona Lisay walks in, a less active member we've been working with forever and she will never come to church. She was laughing at my reaction. Church was the most spiritual I've ever been in. Testimony meeting was incredible. In our Gospel Principles class I got called on to go up and bear my testimony because "my eyes were glowing" and they wanted to know why. haha. And President Guanzon was there and gave me a pat on the back after I sat down. haha I love Legazpi Ward. And then Relief Society was just incredible. We went home and studied and broke our fasts and everything, and then we went over to Fred and Iza's. Iza's son, Ichigo has been so stubborn and not very receptive. He gets home halfway through the lesson with a bunch of friends. He leaves the friends outside, is hovering around us listening, and says "sorry I couldn't come to church today. I'll come next week" and then he pinky promised me that he would go. Iza started crying and I was like "is this real life?" and then he offered to say our closing prayer. It. was. a. miracle. We haven't been able to get through to this kid, and then all of a sudden out of nowhere... fasting works, people. It was incredible. 

P.S. Sorry I'm emailing so late. We had another choir practice earlier for the arrival of President Nelson next week. It took the whole P-day, but we're sounding so good and we've changed the song to Abide With Me and It's gonna be great! Which also means, I will have P-day next tuesday instead of monday because he is coming on Monday. So be prepared next week for a picture of me with President Russel M. Nelson. Boy am I excited!

I love you all, and I hope you have a great week!

Sister Wilkins

Re: Pictures Week 44

1. All of us reunited
3. On the Jeepnie on the way to church :)
4. Before church started