Elder Dylan Lewis

Elder Dylan Lewis

Monday, December 28, 2015

Christmas Skype call with Dylan

A Week Full of Joy

So this last week was absolutely amazing. To start the week off we got to go to Laoag for Monday and Tuesday for Christmas Conference. All the missionaries in the Philippines Laoag Mission were there. It was a lot of fun. For the Monday portion we got to wear P-Day clothes all day and we played a bunch of games and had a lot of food, it was a blast. After the games we changed into proselyting clothes and had dinner and each zone performed the skit they prepared as well as the song they prepared. It was awesome to see all the other skits and hear the other songs. On Tuesday we listened to President and Sister Andrada and the Assistants to the President give us counsel. They talked a lot about obedience. There are a lot of missionaries that struggle with that here but as a mission we are getting better and better.

Wednesday we had the Sinait Branch Christmas Party. Elder De Leon and I got to help cook barbecue for the party, that was a lot of fun. The whole party was so much fun and we had a really good turn out especially with some Less Actives. We played a lot of games, I got wrapped in toilet paper like a mummy, and we interacted with the members a lot. I absolutely love the members here. They have so much faith. A lot of them to get to church have to pay money just for a ride and for some families that can get expensive and yet they still come, it's incredible.

Thursday was a normal day, we didn't have district meeting so we got extra time to go and proselyte. Our lessons are going pretty well but unfortunately our investigators haven't been keeping the commitments we extend to them.

Friday was Pasko (Christmas) and it was so amazing. We had lunch and dinner appointments and there were fireworks like you wouldn't believe. We actually had to be in our apartment by 7:00 pm because of the fireworks. It was super loud to but really awesome.

Saturday was my favorite day. I got to Skype my family and that was the best Christmas Gift I got and could have ever gotten. Leading up to it I was worried about being homesick after the call but strangely enough I wasn't. The day became just another normal day after that and we went to work. Work is a life savor for me because I can't think about anything other than my investigators meaning I can't be homesick.

Sunday was so amazing like usual. I taught Elders Quorum again and that was a lot of fun. The speakers in church really brought the spirit and the whole day was just phenomenal because of church.

This last Christmas was the best Christmas I have had so far in my life. Even though I'm away from home. I didn't really get anything for Christmas and that kinda made it better. I wasn't really allowed to focus on what I got I was really only able to focus on the Savior and that made my Christmas magandang-maganda. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. I love you all and remember happiness is a choice.

Elder Lewis

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Malagayang Pasko!!!

Malagayang Pasko! This last week had to have been the hardest week of my whole mission and yet the funnest week of my mission. So first on Monday we were with the whole Zone again and that was awesome then we went back to Sinait because on P-day we still have to teach. We went to buy food and a very poor man who had down syndrome and some physical restrictions as well came up to me and asked for money. It is however against the rules for missionaries to give out money. I had to tell this beloved child of our Heavenly Father I can't give you money. Doing that was the most difficult thing for me. I love the people here and I would give everything I can to them but I'm not allowed to give them money. I spent the rest of the day feeling completely defeated because maybe this time could have been an exception.

Tuesday was pretty good though. We were out finding and stopped by 7-11 to get a snack and ended up getting invited to one of the workers birthday parties. So we went and hung out with them. Well it turns out the father of the family was really good friends with some missionaries a few years ago and was doing all the right things. He had to stop taking the lessons however because of work. When we were talking to him he said that the most important thing is his family. We could have a golden investigator and we have the opportunity to bring him and his whole family into the gospel and watch their lives improve. Right now we are just building some trust with them but soon we might be able to teach them.

Wednesday was average but Thursday was pretty crazy. We had a pretty big earthquake here. Everything is fine but the walls and ceiling to our apartment were close to collapsing and our neighbors antennae fell off the roof of their house. It was scary but super cool. Elder De Leon almost had a heart attack it was funny.

Friday and Saturday were also pretty average lessons are starting to get more difficult because our investigators sometimes aren't home for us to teach them. Sunday was really great, I taught Elders Quorum and Elder De Leon and I helped in Sunday School because their lesson was on missionaries. Then I was a surprise speaker in Sacrament. I found out right as sacrament started. I wasn't given a topic and so I chose to speak on Jesus Christ and His Atonement because of Christmas and how His Atonement is the greatest gift in the world. It was amazing because as I was speaking I also ended up learning more about the Atonement. The power of the Holy Ghost is amazing.

Brothers and Sisters, this Christmas season don't focus on your self, focus on others and focus on giving to them. Think about Christ because He is the reason. I love you all so much.

Malagayang Pasko!

Elder Lewis

From the Sinait Branch activity

These pictures were posted by a member of the Sinait Branch.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

At war

Kumusta kayo! This last week has been great and interesting. Tuesday we were spending some time with a part member family. The same family that we generally are with, the one with the little kids. They own some baboy (pigs) and wanted to show me them. So we start walking done the road and they say, "Elder, this way." Pointing to a small little path in the jungle. So we hiked through the jungle, it was awesome. The baboy were pretty cool, they were much bigger than I thought they would be. We did this throughout the week, we often have dinner appointments with them. On one of the trips we were walking down the road to go through more farm and a much easier path than the one through the jungle. We found this goat who had his head stuck in the fence and because of its horns it wasn't able to pull its head out. We tried for probably twenty minutes to help this poor goat get unstuck but it was to no avail. I was thinking about how to help when a though came into my mind. "Kneel down and pray." At first I though "I don't know it's kinda silly to pray about helping a goat." But I decided to kneel down and offer a pray. It was a really quite prayer, almost non-verbal and I could tell that the someone was watching me. I finished the prayer and found one of the non-members watching me. She then had the idea that I go to the other side of the fence and push the goats head while she pulls it. We then were able to free the goat.

 I learned some very important lessons from this experience.

 The first one is nothing is to small or to silly for you to pray about, if it's important to you and it's a good thing then it's important to Heavenly Father.

Second lesson I learned was sometimes the promptings from the Holy Ghost we receive aren't for you in the end. What I mean by this is that I already know how powerful prayer is, I've had some really amazing experiences with prayer but this little girl might not have known, she might not have that same testimony but now it is at least strengthened by me acting on the prompting I received.

Third is sometimes we need help. The way I kinda saw the whole thing was the goat was us, people. The grass on the other side of the fence, that it was trying to eat, was temptation, and the fence was sin. We are tempted ever second of every day. We are in the most important war that will ever be fought. The spiritual war of choosing to be on Heavenly Fathers side or Satans side. When we sin or fall into temptation we get stuck in the fence and are unable to free ourselves. That is where Christ comes in. He is the only way out of the fence and it is by his grace that we are saved. It's Christmas season and we all have the opportunity to rejoice His birth and his life. I would like to leave a challenge to all of you. Every day set time aside to read about the birth of Christ and to really think about what He means to you. I promise that if you do this you will see His hand in your life more and come even closer to Him.

Alam ko na sa pamamagitan ng pagbabayad-sala ni Jesucristo and kung susunod sa Kanyang halimbawa tapos magiging mas masaya tayo. Alam ko na kinakailangan ang tagapagligtas at alam ko na pagmamahal si Jesucristo si Ama sa Langit.

Mahal ko kayo at Maligayang Pasko,

Elder Lewis

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Time is Crazy

The language is still coming along slowly, both Tagalog and Ilocano. I'm still spending a lot of time with little kids. They really help me out with the language. This weekend we had District Conference, which is the same as Stake Conference. It was amazing! We got to hear from the District Presidency, President and Sister Andrada and from a member of the Seventy. I learned so much and the spirit was so strong! To get there we took a Jeepney all the way to Vigan, which is an hour away. If you don't know, jeepneys are really small and we filled it with our members. It was a blast!

Also for Christmas every missionary gets together at the mission presidents home and we just have a Christmas party for like two days. So to prepare for that each zone has to prepare a song, a skit and make a zone t-shirt. We have been meeting as often as we can so I'm really getting to know my zone. My zone is so awesome! I get along with them really well.

I can honestly tell when the spirit is there in a lesson and when it's not. One my language is much better and two I also learn something. I can't remember where but in D&C it says something to the effect of "both are edified." That is so true. I can't explain it but I can honestly say I learn something from teaching lessons. It's amazing.

Ayaya ten kayo! Listen to the spirit and remember to stay awesome!

I forgot, everyone now calls me "Short Amerikano." I use to really struggle with being small but now it is honestly the greatest blessing in my life. I am actually asked frequently if I'm actually an American and if I am if I'm full American or if I'm part Filipino. The Lord calls us to where we need to be and if we let Him, we can become tools in his hands. We just need to follow the spirit and live our lives according to His will. Life sucks, it honestly does but it always gets better. I know that and I know God loves us no matter what. I know both of those things because of one thing: the sun rises every day. Life gets better we just have to wait for the light to enter our lives.. God loves us because the sun rises. Now you might be thinking, well Elder Lewis has absolutely lost his mind this time, but this is how this works. He loves everyone no matter what they have done, and the sun rises and shines it's light on everyone. Heavenly Father is the sun and his love is the rays. I have always been told that to be a great missionary we have to be ourselves. I always though that would be easy and then I realized I don't really know who I am. I know what I like but who am I and I can honestly say that my mission has helped me find who I really am. In two years when I see you all again, I'll be the real me. Be prepared, if you though I was crazy before, it's a whole new ball game.

I love you all, be yourselves, no one else can be you and YOU have something unique to offer the world. Bring it and own it, don't be ashamed of who you are and become who you want to be.

I love you all,

Elder Lewis

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

You have to Love the people

This week has been pretty good. We had a surprising number of lessons this week since we had to travel on Tuesday to Laoag and the again on Thursday to Vigan. In Laoag we had "reunion" which is where all the trainers and trainees from my batch meet together again and talk to the Mission President and the AP's. It was so amazing to see my MTC District the is also in my mission. We got to catch up and talk and it was great. They are all doing great, one of them actually had a baptism yesterday. Wednesday was average just teaching. I'm starting to notice a difference in my teaching now. I'm slowly getting better at the language which really helps my teaching. The trick that I've learned on how to learn a language faster and be better at it is you have to pray for help. There is a huge difference on the days I pray for help and the days when I don't pray for help. Thursday we had Zone Training Meeting and it was great. I learned a lot from the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders. It was a great day. Friday we had a harder time teaching, and Saturday we attended a baptism of one of the Sisters investigators. I got to witness again and I was also asked to conduct the meeting. It was a good day. My favorite day though was yesterday, Sunday. Nothing is better than going to church and taking the sacrament. I love church I feel at home there. I taught young mens this week. So yesterday me and Elder De Leon tried fasting for our investigators, we were hoping that by some chance at least one of our investigators would come to church, however once again none of them came. I know however that we will eventually get them to come and if they don't then, as hard as it will be, we will have to drop them. A very Important thing that I have learned is, as a missionary our job is to harvest the souls that are ready for the gospel. Did we waste time with out investigators? No, of course not, we still helped them come closer to Christ which is our purpose.

Life gives us trials. Everyone goes through trials and everyone is knocked down by life. What separates winners and losers is that the winners get back up over and over again even though they know they will just get knocked down again. Also happiness is a choice. Sometimes it's the hard choice to make because of our trials but there is always some good in everything. So choose to focus on that, choose to be happy and your life will be so much better. Ammok na ay totoo, naragsak nayibati ti nagan ni Jesucristo, Amen

Ayaya ten kayo,

Elder Lewis

Pictures from Sinait

me and Mary Rose

Trisha and one of her neighbors. I love these kids

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Still loving it

So this last week has been pretty great. We had a lot of lessons and could possible have another investigator. Once again none of our investigators came to church, however, we had two less active members come to church. It was so amazing to see them! The joy I felt when I saw them at church was amazing! I really love church. It is so amazing and I wish church were actually longer. The spirit there with the members is something else. It's so amazing here.

I also went on exchanges this week. I was in Cabugao with Elder Cabanus. We were only able to teach one family there and they taught me some Ilocano. This week wasn't a whole lot different than other weeks. Just more teaching, which is good. Oh, something funny that happened was all the little kids call me "short americano" I love it!

Also I absolutely love hanging around the children here. I'm on the same level of Tagalog as them and since they don't understand english yet I am forced to speak to them in Tagalog and a little Ilacano. Also in church yesterday it was the Primary Program. It was so amazing.

Alam ko na yung Simabahan ni Jesucristo ay totoo. Alam ko na kinakailangan yung tagapagligtas and Jesucristo ay tagapagligtas. Alam ko na sa pamamagitan ng pagbabayad-sala ni Jesucristo magiging masaya at malinis tayo. Alam ko na pagmamahal ang Diosko. Alam ko na meyroon Niya ang plano para sa atin.
Naragsak Nayibati ti nagan ni Jesucristo, Amen.

Ayaya ten kayo

Elder Lewis

Pictures from the Sinait Branch

These are pictures that a member from the Sinait Branch posted on Facebook. How I love social media!
Dylan and a member from the Sinait Branch

Dylan and Elder De Leon

Thursday, November 19, 2015

What a fast week!

What a fast week! It was a great week for us. We went out finding and have two new potential investigators. We taught all of our investigators and they are progressing pretty well but none of them have come to church yet. The language is coming along pretty well, I've also started learning Ilocano this week. It's a little different that Tagalog, but doesn't seem to difficult. This week we also taught some members how to introduce the Book of Mormon to non members and did some role play with them so they could experience it. Yesterday in church I taught Elders Quorum, directed the music in priesthood, and conducted the gospel principles class, it was a lot of fun!

So last week I talked about praying before you leave and how important that is. Well we forgot again and this time I crashed me bike three times, they weren't bad and I'm totally fine, but I've learned my lesson this time, and since then I have prayed before I left and nothing bad has happened. So don't forget to pray before you leave.

This week I also caught a spider and used it in a spider fight and I won. The children in the Philippines love fighting spiders, that and the card game Uno. On member visits we always end up playing a game of Uno.

I love you all, till next week,

Elder Lewis

Pictures from Sinait

a third of the onions

Brother Roben offered us a ride home

helping members harvest and gather onions

my fighting spider

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Week 9 - Dito sa Sinait

So it's been a pretty good week. We went to Laoag City twice, once for P-day and then again on Wednesday for mission conference. Elder Haynie and his wife came to Laoag and gave us all some training. He is a part of the Seventy so it was fantastic being able to get advice from him. President and Sister Andrada were also there to give training. Because we were in Laoag twice I was able to see my MTC district. It was cool being able to see them and see how they are doing.

We have three new investigators: Jony, Michelle and Jen Christian. So we just started teaching them and invited all of them to church except for Jen Christian. We actually met him at church, his friend brought him so now we are going to start teaching him. No one came to church this week so I'm a little discouraged. Speaking of church, President and Sister Andrada and their family came to church with us. It was pretty great to hear from them again. I also got the opportunity to teach the Gospel Principles class and President Andrada decided to join us. It was a little nerve racking but he was a great help in teaching. Also I finished the Book of Mormon twice this week, I absolutely love the Book of Mormon.

This week Elder De Leon and I learned a very important lesson. That lesson is to pray before you travel. So Friday we had two appointments in our furthest area which is a 15 minute bike ride from the apartment. One of the people wasn't home so we were only able to teach once. Our next appointment was another 10 minutes away from where we were so we started to ride our bikes there. In order to get there we have to cross a bridge. The bridge is only about 10 feet off the ground and under it is a little rice field that has already been harvested. So we are riding and all of the sudden I see Elder De Leon, who is in front of me, go off the side of the bridge with his bike. He is completely fine and is only slightly bruised. His bike is ok as well. So moral of the story, pray before you travel.

I love you all and time is starting to fly, I can't wait till next week to tell you some more things that are happening dito sa Sinait. Also I ate dog with sauce made from blood, it was pretty good.

Mahal ko kayo!

Elder Lewis

Pictures from Sinait, Laoag



The beach

Where we rode our bikes to get to our appointment

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

I'm in Heaven

So this has to have been the fastest week in the world! Compared to the MTC one day at the MTC is equivalent to a week and a half in the field. It's been a pretty great week. We have had dinner at a members house everyday so far and we have a new investigator named Aldin Bathlezar. He's really good friends and works with some of our area's recent converts. We have a baptismal date set for him at the end of this month but we haven't been able to get him to come to church yet so we'll so how everything works out. I got to watch a spider fight, for those of you who don't know, a spider fight is where two people each have their own spider and they put them on a stick and then the spiders try to kill each other. It's really cool, and kinda creepy and gross. I went on exchanges with the district leader last Wednesday and we walked all over the place and found a lot of people. I met some of his investigators and they have different names. Their names are Apple and Jelly. They are both really great investigators and are almost "golden" investigators. For dinner that night I got to eat balut. It's a fertilized duck egg and after the duck has started to form they cook it. It has to be one of the most delicious things I have ever eaten. I also got to eat goat, its really good as well. I am so glad that I am in the Philippines, mainly Sinait. It's beautiful here and everyone  that I pass in the street says hello. It's amazing here. Me and my companion are getting along well and our lessons are becoming better and better as we get a rhythm to our teaching. We haven't had the most luck in finding new investigators but I know we will find someone that is ready to hear the gospel, we just have to keep looking. I really love being here and I truly know that I was called here for a reason, my goal right now is to find out that reason.

Mahal ko kayo!

Elder Lewis

Monday, October 26, 2015

More pictures from Sinait

Philippines Laoag Mission Map

Dylan's mission

Me, Elder De Leon, President and Sister Andrada

President and Sister Andrada and me

No Packages, please

Because it is expensive to ship things to the Philippines and because the money to pick up the package comes directly out of Dylan's support funds, he has asked that we do not send packages.

(For letters, packages, pictures, money, etc. to missionaries)

Elder Dylan Lewis
Brgy. 50 Buttong, Airport Avenue
Junction Tangid Road, Laoag City
2900 Ilocos Norte, Philippines

*any packages picked up from the Philippines Post Office have a shipping and handling fee of PHP 50. This money will be automatically be taken out of Elder Lewis' support money.

*Please do NOT use DHL and FedEx because it will cost Dylan a lot of money to claim the package compared to other couriers.

My First Area - Sinait

I finally made it to my first area. It is super hot here and I am in the beginning of the cold season here. Even though the Illocos region got hit really hard by the typhoon, my area doesn't seem like it got hit really hard, however I'm more southern than other missions and the north got hit the hardest. I arrived last Saturday and met my companion in the mission home on Friday. His name is Elder De Leon. He is a Filipino. My first area is Sinait. It's a decent sized place with a lot of farms. It's really beautiful here. I'll try to send pictures but I'm not sure how well it will work. My apartment is really small. The shower isn't even a shower, it's a bucket with really cold water. There are at least 12 giant spiders that are visible in the apartment, there may be more that I can't see. It's pretty great here though.

My first day here I got to attend a baptism for one of the members. I was asked to speak about the baptism and then I got to be a witness at the baptism. It was a really cool experience. I talked to some of the members that where there. We ate dinner at one of the branch presidency's house and talked to a recent convert that is his neighbor, his name is Jerom. The members here are really cool. Then on Sunday I spoke in church, said the opening prayer in priesthood and the closing prayer in sacrament meeting, I taught young mens, needed to answer half of the questions in Sunday school where I was helping. It was also the branch president's birthday so we celebrated with this jello kind of cake that had cheese on top of it, pieces or corn inside of it as well as some pieces of carrots. I didn't like it, but everyone else loved it. We also ate spaghetti to celebrate. After that Elder De Leon, the Sisters, and I went to a members house to give a baby a blessing. Elder De Leon anointed the oil for the blessing and then I was asked to give the blessing. It was a really amazing experience. I was lead by the Holy Ghost to say certain things, which I needed because I didn't know anything about the family. It was really amazing being able to give that blessing. After that we went back and did our study's and then went back to teach Jerom. We were fed again and I ate dried fish for the first time. Apparently every American that trys it hates it, I thought, however, that it was pretty good. The food and the culture here are so different but I'm slowly starting to pick it up. They don't use utensils most the time, they mostly eat with their hands. It's different but I don't mind it. I'm not as good at Tagalog as I thought I was. I'm an extremely slow speaker and it's hard for me to understand what they are saying because they speak so fast. I know though that in time I'll understand it and be able to speak to them fluently. It says in 1 Nephi 3:7 that, "the Lord giveth no commandment unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that thing which he commandeth them." So I know that there is a reason I am in Sinait and that Heavenly Father will give me challenges because He wishes to see me grow. I know He does the same thing for all of you.

Sa pangalan ni Jesucristo, Amen.

Elder Lewis

My First Area - Sinait

The view right outside where I live

Me, Elder De Leon, President and Sister Andrada

Elder De Leon and Me

In Manila waiting to get to Laoag


Manila Temple


Travel update from Dylan (4 days ago)

I made it to Laoag safely. Our second flight got canceled so we took a 8 hour bus ride. Someone took my luggage and so I prayed and they found it and I'll be getting it tomorrow. I find it as a tender mercy. I'm safe, I find out who my companion/trainer is in a little bit.

Its really beautiful here, I wish you guys could see it.


Elder Lewis

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Laoag, Here I Come! - Mission Week 7

Hey everyone, so it's been a while since i last emailed. The flight from home to the Philippines was really long and totally exhausting, but being in the Philippines is absolutely amazing. It is unbelievably hot here and it's their winter! The driving here is the craziest thing I have ever seen! On a four lane road they will drive like its a six lane road and the coolest part is no one gets into car accidents. On Monday Elder Ossola and I went out proselyting in the Quezon City North mission with some other missionaries that were from there. It was fun, we went to a members house, Brother Sherman, and shared some scriptures with him it was a lot of fun! We road jeepneys there and back, and that is just a completely different experience! Its a lot of fun though! On Tuesday we went and got our visa and immigration paperwork done and after that we went to the American Cemetery from World War Two that's here in Manila. It was so cool there and you could actually feel the spirit there. After we went to the cemetery we had the opportunity to go to the Manila Temple. It's such an amazing and beautiful temple. The architecture is amazing both inside and outside.

Today, Wednesday we went to the airport so that we could fly out to Laoag. Unfortunately out flight got canceled because there was a level four typhoon there. It has dropped down to level one but the flight company didn't want to take any risks. I honestly believe that everything happens for a reason. Our flight getting canceled might have happened for a specific reason that no one yet knows about. Elder Jones actually said it best, he said, "It doesn't matter where I'm at, I'm here for two years so there is no reason for me to be stressed." He is so right. Right now I am here to serve the Lord and if that means that I don't go to Laoag until tomorrow then that is fine. I am just grateful for the opportunity I have to serve. While we were at the airport we were teaching people and spreading the gospel and the people were very receptive of it. We handed out all of our pass along cards and all of our pamphlets. It was great and it felt great, we could tell that they felt the spirit. I only hope and pray that they will search for the church now.

I can't wait to get to Laoag. I know that there will be a lot of service once I get there but I can't wait. Service is a great way to spread the gospel, it allows us to be examples to those around us. I would like to extend a challenge to all of you. Find a way to serve those around you everyday. Alam ko na sa pamamagitan ng maglingkod, magiging sobrung saya tayo. Alam ko na sa pamamagitan ng kapinyarihan ng Diyos, pwede gagawa tayo ng lahat ng bagay.

Hanggang mag-email ako, mahal ko kayo!

Elder Lewis

Faith Week - a note from his parents

Dylan's arrival into the Philippines became a faith building experience for those of us here. We received an email from Dylan last Friday night - his Saturday morning - that he had arrived safely in Manila and would be heading out to Laoag. He wasn't exactly sure when he would leave or be able to email us again. That was hours before Typhoon Koppu (or Lando as it is called in the Philippines) made landfall.

Radio silence.

We saw story after story of devastation in the Philippines. Every total climbed; rainfall, the missing count, the death toll, and the number of Filipinos that had been evacuated coming in at over 100,000. Dylan should have been traveling in the path of the typhoon; however, we know that the Lord and all of his servants look over the missionaries. So, while we believed he was safe - there was no word from Dylan. We weren't sure where he even was.

Part of the typhoon's destruction included the country's infrastructure. Some provinces were left with no way to communicate, including Ilocos - where Laoag is located. And not knowing where Dylan was - we had no idea when he would be able to communicate. We were left with one line of communication, fortunately it is the best one.


And we prayed - we didn't stop praying. We haven't stopped praying.

I was left with the knowledge that no one can take better care of Dylan than the Lord - not even me. That he was in the best hands. We continued to pray.

We received an email from Dylan in the middle of night on Wednesday. He is safe. He and his companion have been staying with missionaries from Quezon City North. He also can't wait to get to Laoag and begin serving the people of his mission as they recover from the typhoon.

Prayers are answered. Our faith continues to grow. We would ask that our friends and family include the missionaries and the people of the Philippines in their prayers.

More information about the typhoon

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Me and my boy
I saw tik tak today, he looks ready to serve which is great. He will be an amazing missionary.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

On My Way Out (Week 5)

Kumusta kayo ang mga tao ko!!!!

Before I start I want to wish my brother Aidan a very happy birthday, and wish that the next year for him will be amazing!

This week has flown by! The next time I email you all I'll be in the Philippines! I feel so ready, so excited and so nervous! My lessons have been going well and the devotionals were amazing! Conference was so great to watch. My favorite talk was by Holland when he talked about mothers. It really hit home. I absolutely loved that talk and I also loved when the primary kids sang for conference, it was amazing! The spirit last weekend was amazing it was so uplifting here at the MTC. After conference we had our usual Sunday night devotional which was given by Vocal Point. They really brought the spirit especially when they sang Nearer My God to Thee, it was the last song they sang and by far the most powerful. Monday was an average day with teaching and class. We lost another amazing teacher here because he was needed elsewhere. Tuesday we had our devotional and it was given by the Relief Society President for the whole church Sister Rosemary Wixom. She gave an awesome devotional. Wednesday and Thursday were average but on friday we had in field orientation. We got to teach in English so that was fun and after teaching everything in Tagalog, teaching in English is so easy. We went over different ways to teach people like if we are in the airport or on a bus or in a park, it was a lot of fun. Today so far has been great to, we got to do our temple trip first thing in the morning and I can't thing of a better way to start the day off, it's like I'm on a spiritual high and I don't want it to stop.

I said this earlier, the next time you hear from me will be when I'm in the Philippines. It weird how its been a month and a half. There are days when I wake up and expect to wake up in my own bed back in Lehi. However, I am so glad I am a missionary and that I have the opportunity to serve my Heavenly Father and His son, my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The best part of waking up as a missionary is being able to grab my name tag that has Jesus Christ's name on it and put it on. I am so excited to go to the Philippines and teach the people in Laoag. I know that I am needed there and that there are people there that have been prepared for me to teach them and that i will have the opportunity to help prepare others for other missionaries that will come later. I know that this is the true church and that Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ and he received revelation to restart Christ Church. I know Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and that Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God. I know that everything that happens is for a reason. I know that because of Christ we always have another chance, and that death isn't the end. One of my favorite scriptures this week that I have been ponderizing is Helaman 14:17. It talks about the redeeming power of Christ. I know that because of Christ all things are possible. I love this church and this gospel, and I am so excited for the next part of my mission. Sa pangalan ni Jesucristo, Amen.

Elder Lewis

Sunday, October 4, 2015

MTC Week 4

Kumusta Kayo!!

It has been a crazy awesome week! We have been teaching a lot lately and have gone over every kind of sentence structure that is in the book we have for Tagalog! Now its just review. Our teacher Brother Broadhead left on Wednesday because he wasn't able to work at the MTC anymore because he was over whelmed with school and he couldn't ever be with his wife. It was tough saying goodbye to him. He has helped me and my whole district learn so much. We also had four district leave for the field on Wednesday. Saying goodbye to them was also difficult, over the last month they have become like family. Our branch is now only half the size it was.

On Tuesday we got to hear from Claudio R.M. Costa, he is the president of the Quorum of the Seventy. He gave a killer talk about being missionaries. When he bore his testimony The room was filled with the spirit, it was amazing! The spirit here is so amazing. Being constantly surrounded by the spirit and having my day filled with that is one of the greatest things I have ever experienced. While I have been here I have been able to see how Heavenly Father has blessed me and everyday I feel like I am coming closer to the Savior. I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior and that because of Him I can make it back to our Heavenly Father. I know that He lives and "because He lives I can live again." (Because of Him, mormon message video) I am so thankful for what my Savior has done for me. I challenge all of you to pray and thank Him and our Heavenly Father for what the have done for you. I know that as you do that you will be able to notice all the little things in your life. I also extend the challenge to all of you to go and watch the video Because of Him, its on lds.org and you can just search for it there. Its a truly amazing video and brings the spirit so powerfully.

Elder Ossola and I got to witness a small miracle on Thursday. We were able to skype members in the Philippines then and give them a little lesson and bear testimony to them. The member we had was Sister Rafada. She was born in Laoag but now lives with her husband and three children in Bacolod. We gave a lesson on faith and it went really well but the miracle came at the end of the lesson. Her father-in-law was a bishop for a long time but is now not active in the church. She bore testimony to us that she knew meeting us wasn't a coincidence that we are meant to go and help reactivate him. The spirit when she told us that was absolutely amazing and just talking about it, thinking about it or writing about it gets me emotional. I too know that it wasn't a coincidence that me and Elder Ossola met her. I am absolutely excited to go to the Philippines so I can hopefully find him and also bring others unto Christ. I know without a doubt that this church is true.

Sa pangalan ni Jesucristo, Amen

Mahal ko kayo!!!

Elder Lewis
Brother Broadhead and me

Elder Church and Me

Me and Elder Josiah Shettel. We were in the same ward 10 years ago.

Got my flight plans

Me and Elder Hiatt

Me and elder Jones

Me and Elder Slocombe

Me and Elder Sorenson

Me and Elder Tafuna

Me and Elders Storrer, Howard, and Svenson

Saturday, September 26, 2015

A Great Time (MTC Week Three)

Kumusta mga taong ko!

This week has been pretty great. I'm still excelling at the language and loving my time in the MTC! Elder Ossola and I taught a killer lesson the other day, we planned on teaching about the Atonement and then we had to give a lesson on the restoration. We hadn't quite prepared for it but through the power of the Holy Ghost we were able to deliver the correct message. Elder Ossola gave the whole first vision in Tagalog and he had never really looked over it. The spirit was so powerful! We had a member of the seventy come and speak to us on being better companions and I feel like I was able to learn a lot from it. On Sunday Loyd Newell from music and the spoken word came and gave a devotional and we sang with him, it was awesome! The choir sang How Firm a Foundation and the spirit that was present was absolutely amazing!

Also this week I got a some bean and cheese dip and we didn't have a microwave to heat them up, so we took the clothes iron and used that to heat it up. It totally worked and tasted great! I'll include a picture with this email. I also made a rubber band ball, its pretty awesome!

Elder Lewis

A Great Time (MTC Week Three) - pictures

Me cooking with Elder Ossola

Us just chillin'

The rubber band ball I made

My new Laoag shirt

Saturday, September 19, 2015

MTC Week 3 pictures

District picture

Dylan and Elder Earnest #swag

What we do when we are bored - both of us

What we do when we are bored - yours truly

Loving the work!


This has been a truly great week. Elder Ossola and I taught our two new "investigators" Marlan and Chloe. The lessons went as expected and so far our investigators our keeping their commitments. Every time we teach the spirit is with us. When we bear our testimonies to them in Tagalog I end up saying words that I had forgotten or did.t even know, I can form perfect sentences and truly teach by the spirit. Reading in Tagalog is becoming easier and easier as well as speaking it. There are times when I don't even remember English words and I just say the Tagalog words instead.

We got two new districts this week as well as sent two district out to the field. The new missionaries are pretty cool, so far the have taken the culture shock of the MTC well. The MTC is a pretty great place. The spirit here helps with everything. From times of missing home to teaching and learning. Being here is such a blessing and as much as i want to just be in the field already I know that I need to finish here first.

We had an awesome devotional tonight and since my district is in choir we had awesome seats to watch the devotional and had the opportunity to sing to Sister Wixom of the primary presidency up at church headquarters. As a closing Hymn we sang the primary song Army of Helaman ( not sure if that is the actual name but it's something like that). As we sang the spirit was absolutely over whelming. It was amazing!

Well thats about it for this week, talk to you all later!


Elder Lewis

Saturday, September 12, 2015

MTC Week two - Kumusta!

Kumusta! This last week has been super busy. We did two service projects in the MTC and had some pretty amazing experiences. We finished teaching Jodi and now she is one of our teachers, and our old teacher Brother Broadhead is our new investigator. His name is Marlon Delacruz and he is also our teacher while he is our investigator, its kinda weird.

When we taught Jodi it was amazing. The spirit really guided us through the lessons and we got her to read the Aklat ni Mormon, to pray everyday, to come to church, and we committed her to being baptized. Even though it was fake, it felt real and the feelings from the Holy Ghost were real. The spirit when we teach is almost if not more powerful than that of the temple.

The gift of tongues is a legitimate thing. I'm learning the language at such an incredible rate. All my prayers are in Tagalog, and most of the time when i speak i say Tagalog words. 

My district is super cool. There are two Sisters and eight Elders. We are all learning at a very quick rate and might end up passing the missionaries that have been here longer than us. An average day consists of about seven and a half hours in the classroom. That is more time I spend in my room.

The MTC is becoming my home the more time I'm here but I really want to just get to The Philippines so I can teach actual investigators.

On Sundays we watch a video of a devotional talk which is pretty awesome. On Tuesdays we get someone that comes into the MTC to give us a devotional. Me and my district are in the choir here so we get really good seats for the devotionals. Just last Tuesday we had Bishop Gerald Causse come to talk to us. He and his wife talked to us about how we are going to be heroes by teaching families the gospel.

This is my testimony in Tagalog

Alam ko po na totoo and simbahan. Alam ko po na mapagmahal po ang Ating Ama sa Langit dahil ibinagay po Niya only begotten son. Alam ko po na kinakailangan po ang tagapagligtas at tagapagligtas po si Jesucristo. Alam ko po na upang maramdaman and pagmamahal ng Diyos magdasal, magbasa and Aklat ni Mormon po tayo. Alam ko po na magiging masaya po tayo kung magsisimba. Alma ko po na totoo kaloob ng mga wika. Sa pangalan ni Jesucristo. Amen.

Mahal ko kayo!

Elder Lewis

​Elder Earnest, Elder Jones, me and Elder Ossola

More pictures from the MTC

A package from Lisa at the mailroom, she went to Loaog and we talked to her about it so she gave us cookies

All the missionaries going to temple walk

Dylan and Elder Jones after one week of lifting weights

Dylan and Elder Jones

Dylan and Elder Ossola with Sister Marcucci (Jodi)

Elder Tafuna after he shot the exit sign with a makeshift sling shot and bouncy ball

Provo temple grounds

Temple trip

Temple trip

This is how we study - Elder Limb and Elder Jones

This is how we study - Dylan and Elder Jones

Dylan's room and his mates

Dylan and his district