Friday, December 27, 2013

Christmas Phone Call

Christmas Day

Best Christmas Gift this year…talking to our missionary…He is doing great and was just as excited to talk to us as we were to talk to him.  so thankful for modern technology!

Week 40 - Christmas Week

Week 40

Christmas Party

Maligayang Pasko... Merry Christmas.
Really fun week everyone. On Thursday we were able to have all the missionaries in this area come to one of the church buildings. There were about 200 plus missionaries all there so we started out just by watching a little movie and than afterwards we had a talent show. So me and all the missionaries in my little district decided to sing some Christmas songs, but yeah you know me I wanted to spice some things up so we sang Feliz navidad as our last song, and everyone loved it ! We all got fake mustaches and wore them and another sister got me a sombrero so…. I basically looked like a real When I was at home I made some Maraca's as well, I just used an empty jar of peanut butter and filled it up with rice. I'll try and get some pictures of that to you later, but yeah everyone was just laughing and having a good time with us. Than me and some other missionaries took some pictures with the California flag that my mom sent  so that was awesome as well. But the best was just talking to everyone that I hadn't seen in a long time. This week has been a little slow but we were able to at least drop in on a few people and wish them a Merry Christmas. Not a ton of Christmas lights but there are enough you just need to go to a busy street to see them. So on the way to the Party a bunch of college students flagged us down and wanted to do an interview with us because we are american . So the next day we went to the University of Saint Isabela for a care taking class and we did a Q and A interview and it turned out to be fun. We were in a class with about 15 students and we were able to talk about life back home and a lot about the Church so that was a really awesome experience for us and them. 

Not much planned for Christmas we have been trying to get some dinner appointments so I think it's going to be a good week for that. Later today we have an appointment , so hopefully all will work out. Another funny thing is that there are a lot of little kids going around at night time caroling to get some candy, so that's fun, making them sing to you. Earlier we played some basketball with some young men in our church it was fun... I got 5 three pointers so I have been improving. But Its been a great experience to be here in the Philippines during this time of my life. A lot has happened since being here for me and I'm sure for all who are reading it. Hate to say it but I know if I was at home right now not much would be going on in my life, so I am glad with my decision to go and serve. I'm also glad for the spirit of Christmas and the time I get to spend with different families and get to help them bring Christ into their lives. It shows me how to make my life better and make my self a better person. But I am grateful for my family and the friends who make my life awesome and great, Thanks again for the presents , I can't wait to open them and have some fun with them. I hope you get to spend some time with your families on Christmas and get to feel their love for you and vice verse. But Salamat again for everything, everyone. You are all great and I Wish you a Merry Christmas from here in the Philippines.

Your favorite missionary….Elder Seth "POGI" Llorens

Elder Seth "POGI" Llorens  

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Week 39

Week 39

The Centro

So this week was fun we were able to do a service project  for an elementary school. We woke up at 6 got to our jeepney terminal at 7 and went to San Fernando.  Our job was to cut grass and make fences for newly planted trees so we show up and I guess they forgot to tell us that the playing field  where all the kids play and where we were gong to work is flooded. So we all got a little muddy really quick but it was fun and we got a ton of work in and completed everything before lunch. We also got to talk and play with all the kids they are super goofy and funny so we had a good time with all of them. My favorite one was this little special kid that kept asking me for food and wanting to help me make some fences. At the end I gave some food to him and gave some of the kids my candy goodies. They were way  fun hoping we get to  do that again before I leave.

 So  you know when ever jeepneys are involved the fun starts and you know, we went jeepney surfing! Then went home and crashed, my legs are still sore from that. So this week was good we found a part member family  and we tought the father that isnt a member and that was one of my best lessons. I felt something so good because I was just telling him how much this would bless his family and that he could be united forever with them and be so much happier.  I ended up giving him a baptismal invitation like 10 mins. in to the lesson thats how good it felt. He's a dad and  just thinking of it, every dad on the earth should want what we are  teaching here. So I just basically had a really great and spiritual lesson and it felt great there's no better feeling after those lessons. basta!
 we also had fun last night we watched the first presidency's Christmas message to us and afterwards we partied... alright we really just went to the Centro and took some pictures with all the Christmas lights. But there was a big party there. We took some pictures with the local police and just enjoyed the environment. but thats about it for me this week. The great message for this week is to enjoy the Spirit of Christmas now and when its over and to remember what Jesus Chirst has done for all of us and contiually does for everyone. Okay everyone I Love you and will talk to you all soon.

Local Police

 the POGI man  Llorens

Week 38

Week 38

Look close and you can see the silly string

So this week kind of went a little slow but a lot of funny and good things happened in it. So the first thing that happened is that I got a Christmas package and in it was Silly String. So I was like yes, perfect a lot of missionaries we had a huge meeting together and at the end we usually take a picture with all of us and this is where I pulled the prank. So I set my camera to record so I would get it all on video.  So after the last flash I just stood in the back and just let the the string fly. Everyone was laughing screaming and having a good time so it was good timing for sure. And even funnier, I was wearing a Christmas tie that sings jingle bells and  the kids, they got a good laugh out of it and they think its some type of magic.

Later that day we went out and we went to a house and the way to enter the property is you have to walk across a coconut log bridge( it was raining) and I'n sure you know where this story is going... So like I said it was raining that day since the night before so it was quite wet outside.  We get to the bridge and its a tad flooded. So any way we go we were going to have to walk through some we choose the log, I get half way across and the log rolled on me, I almost used my "skills" to catch myself but I slipped on the other foot as well and I came hurling down into the nasty stinky muddy water. I was about knee deep and yeah I smelt like a straight up pig.  We get to the house and  no one answers bummer! Then on the way back  it happens again. Jokes on me I guess. 
So the cool thing is I talked to our bishop and discussed the area and he gave me some families to find. So on Thursday we were in one of our areas and I had never been out this  way before, and  I remembered that one of the people that the bishop told me about lived out this way. So I made the decision were "going on an adventure" we walked a couple miles to find this guy but we finally did and I'm glad we took a chance. After we talked to him he went to church so that was great and its a huge area so later on we will try and talk to more people in that area. Saturday we went to another area and just started asking people if they knew any of the other names we had. We were able to get the general direction to where to go.. after walking for a while I  asked an older nanay if she recognized this name , she didn't recognize it so we start walking away than she called me over and she said she does know them and she'll take us there . We met the family and they were really receptive so that was  cool. 
 SO the thing im thankful for this week is the power of god. If he wants something to happen it will happen but on his own time.And I'm grateful for the other Elders and Sisters serving especially at this time they are doing  great things and I encourage you all to keep it up. And for those at home embrace the spirit of Christmas and do things that you would want others to do for you. okay my Nagas thank you for the e-mails I Love you all I hope you have a great week.

St Nick Night December 6- stocking filled

 Take it easy.
Elder Llorens

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Week 37 Thanksgiving

Week 37 - Thanksgiving

Hello fan club! Well I survived our Thanksgiving meal, I almost went into cardiac arrest from all the fried chicken we made. We bought like 5 kilos of chicken for fried chicken+ 3kilos of potatoes for mashed potatoes and everything  was glorious! AHHH.. but yeah I had like a MSG over load and like I said I almost died, no joke my left arm went numb for a little. Little scary! LOL So my first Thanksgiving away from home  wasn't so bad and  guess what? I went  to the lamest hole in the wall grocery store and they had one more Martenelli's Apple cider just for me! I would like to say I shared but…. I chugged it in like 30 seconds the was the second glorious thing I had. But, you bet I had a killer upset stomach. So the week was pretty normal but  Thanksgiving was a blast a lot of food and  it was super cool to have 6 roommates so we had fun cooking the food and just messing  around. 
Me and Elder Johnson were studs! He is doing really good for his 4th week out in the mission field. We have a  blast going out and getting the"Hey Joe" "where are you going?" This is what the filipino people yell at us. So yeah all the Filipinos like to share there English with us every chance they get so its a good opportunity for us as well. But we have a great time teaching the less actives in our area. the really hard thing for them is they have a good testimony of the gospel, but they are unable to come to church due to the lack of money  Elder Johnson and I understand this, so we try as hard as we can to share a powerful message with them. It's a real bummer, but we try to encourage them as much as possible and just try to explain to them that the light will break brightly soon after their trials and problems are over. They are great people and they always show me how life is suppose to be lived. Its going to be a sad day when Im  heading home on that big plane, too many great memories happened here with these great people, while trying to make the best of it. 
 I got a huge package from the family and friends, Daw so yeah I want to open all your presents everyone but I promised mom I won't but I don't know how long I can keep that promise, hahah just kidding mom. But yeah not a really good one this  letter this week,but hey I'm trying. 
I  am trying to remember that my job is to preach the gospel and help the people come closer to god and I notice it all comes first through me and then each of them. For those that are not of our faith and are reading this I have a powerful testimony that prayer works, that our father in Heaven loves each one of us and has a personal plan for us, even if we don't deserve his love he is always there, willing to listen and help us, but first we need to ask in faith and then the blessings and help from heaven will come to us and give the answer and comfort that we need. I prayed so much before my mission but I don't think I ever really noticed it. But here I have noticed something and that  is that he does listen and does answer but in his own time. Funny thing you can laugh at me for was that it rained like all this week so yup i was walking through all these puddles and ended up ruining all my shoes basically because they all have holes in them, I was walking in water up to my ankles so I guess its my fault. I guess... any ways that's all i got for this week, miss you, love you and I get super excited when I get emails from you. I'll talk to you all soon.
Elder Llorens,,,,,, POGI hhahahahahahahasahajfklasdjflsadfjsda;fkljsdf  no translation (just for you mom!)

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Week 36

Week 36

The Gang

Well I got chastised on saying  "this week was another good one".... So i guess I'm not allowed to say that one anymore, thanks Mom! So well astig yung linggo na ito nagkaroon tayo ng transfers. (no translation) Soooo i got a new companion....My new companion from a 1st round pick (out of 10) , of the 2013 November transfers is Elder Johnson from Ogden Utah!

So I guess they trust me a lot to help train new Americans for some reason, the last one I trained got dengue fever they are just gambling on me I guess….its because of my sick understanding of the tagalog language, I'm sure! Any way he's tight he's a white boy standing like 5'' 9 wears glasses and is pretty smart dude... but he's good, he helps me a lot especially during the lessons so it was a worthy draft pick! 

So we were privileged to hang out with one of my other yogis here in the mission Elder Hausia who stands 6'' 3 200 something from San Fransisco and is my Tongan brother; he's freaking funny. We got to hang out with that guy for 2 days Tuesday-Thursday and that was a blast! I had him cook for me we made some spam with eggs Hawaiian style and I nearly had a cholesterol attack. That was super good and he made some other great good for us; yum! I love Elders that can cook.  Elder Johnson and I  finally got out on our own and made the attack on our areas. We did good! We already did some contacting and got some return appointments. Elder Johnson is really eager to go out so he brings a lot to the table and he's really good teaching lessons; all I have to do is help him with Tagalog. So we got some new missionaries in our house; Elder Sornenson from Utah is our new zone leader and me and him are now buds. And  Elder Jocabson, who I served with in Sipocot a long time ago and are together again... small world no joke… 

But it's basically full blast Christmas here now in Naga. Everyone has their little Christmas lights out now. And I'm like what the heck this week is Thanksgiving where is my glorious Turkey, potatoes and pie? We are planning on just having fried chicken... I lose hahaha. But yeah all I have is like a year left so that's the motivation. It is cool looking at all the new missionaries,  they look like babies, (haha) but they are tight. I know how that was and its weird to think I'm somewhat older now in the mission. But its cool helping them out. This morning we played some basketball, long story short I did the sickest steal ever basically a no-look (using the force) and doing math in my head like Sherlock Holmes and stole the ball. In the end after I stole it and scored I looked at my hand and had 2 purple fingers and 2 bleeding finger nails so that's a real bummer. Somethings never change huh? But "buhay pa"… I'm still alive. I have  a fresh missionary haircut because we have interviews with  President Reeder on Wednesday so I look like a fresh dork right now, Ha ha. 

The cool spiritual thing for this week came yesterday when 3 young men  said they wanted to work with us. Obviously I'm not perfect in Tagalog and like everyone I have weakness… (see Ether 12:27: "And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I  give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." ). But it was cool to me  that the 3 men were able to come and work with us and of course speak perfect Tagalog, but back it up in Bicolano (another language) there are so many different languages;  that the Gospel will roll forth to all languages, tongues and people.

Even when I was getting my haircut Manny (the Pac-man) Pacquiao was giving the glory to God for the fight and is going to end up giving his winnings to all the people that were affected by the typhoon. But its cool that everyone has a focus and that's God in their lives. And I'm helping them find that and helping them choose the right in their lives. People say they really enjoy what I'm doing here, honestly I'm just doing what Jesus did.  I've made mistakes in my life but that is forgotten as soon as we realize why we are here and what our purpose is. After we realize that we're good, but we have  to maintain that happiness and endure to the end to receive all the blessings.  A challenge for you especially for this week of "Thanksgiving" look for the good in our lives instead of demanding the things we want.  God gives us challenges and trials in our life, but he knows what he's giving us, he just knows we can handle  the burden and he knows it'll bless us later on down the road.

That is my peace for this week. Thanks everyone for your nice emails; love you all and of course I miss you. Feel free to send me a surprise turkey  the address is 39 panganiban naga city 4400 cam sur........................................................................................................................................................
okie dokie mga kaibigan pakidala ninyo and mag packages sa akin na mahal na mahal ko kayong lahat.
astig Peace !!!!!!!!!!!...............
ELDER POGI.......>> Elder Seth Joaquin Llorens

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Week 35 - a week of service

Week 35

Beautiful View from Apartment

Well this week was a really good one again! This was my last week with Elder Relf, now he is a real missionary and has graduated and is no longer in his training.  It's pretty good to see that I was able to successfully train, especially an american.  It's good to be tested like that, and to feel the Lord's inspiration and guidance with the language. The  other news is  Elder Relf got transferred and I'm staying. I meet my new companion tomorrow hopefully he's a filipino so I can continue to progress in the language as well as have some fun!
 We were able to teach a new lady and she is really interested in the gospel and wants to learn more. It was good teaching with Elder Relf for the last time and its been a great 3 months.  I know that as his adventure begins on his own that he will be terrific. (of course because I trained him, estig!)

The Crew

So the cool thing this week we were able to make care packages and send them to the victims of the super typhoon in Tacloban. It was fun coming together with the community and helping the people who are in need.  It was fun to hear that if they ever need help again they would personally call us for help. We did the service at the local radio station but that was the biggest  highlight of the week. We also were able to  teach a less active family and really help them out by helping them change their focus  so they can become more united and can strengthen their family. It is hard to explain the life people live over here.  These are humble people who work hard for everything they have. I will never look at life the same, I will never look at what I have been given the same.  I love this opportunity to learn to live in a country that is so different than what I am use to.


Thank you to all for the emails you are great, I love you and good luck to my cousin who's going to the father land Germany for the army  your the man Jase good luck and I'll see you in a while.
Elder Llorens

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Week 34

Week 34

So just want to say that I am safe here in the city and that the storm went around us. Thankfully we were prepared and protected. So there are a lot of deaths in Leyte and Tacloban and Capiz, we call theses areas "visaya". These areas were completely demolished. So sad to see people with nothing lose what little they had. My first trainer Elder  Parohinog's family lost there house.  His family is in the area that was hit the worst. He was able to contact some of his family but still has a brother and his brothers family unaccounted for. When the storm was heading towards us we were were told to stay in doors but its hard to sit and do nothing so we  ended up  going out with our supply elders and finance elders to stock new apartments for new missionaries. We felt service was what we needed to do. But when we left there was a black out for the whole Bicol region and when we got back it was still going. We went out to get food but there were no restaurants open... only Starbucks ( yes starbucks!) so i got a peppermint hot chocolate and it was absolutely glorious. That Night I watched a church movie called Ephriams Rescue and it was really good it was about a man called Ephraim Hanks who helps rescue hand carters that are stuck in a trail during the winter.  It was awesome to see the miracles performed while  rescuing them.  

 But yeah I am thankful for the safety here in my mission. I heard that all of the missionaries in the affected areas are going to manila to wait until the calamity passes. I guess there are a lot of riots and it is not safe for us. I Hope every one is praying for the Philippines right now. We need the help now.  We hope that our continued service to the filipino people will soften their hearts and they will be made ready for the gospel. So many needs can be met just by having  faith in the Savior.  This is a terrible time for these people, it is hard to be so close to this kind of suffering. 

 Next week is transfers again so we will see what happens, if I leave or stay this one is a 50/50 gamble I don't know how its going to be. But where ever I go I will be happy doing what the Lord needs me to do. The cool thing is we got a new investigator this week and shes really nice.  We also had an investigator come to church so there is some progress this week. This has been a good transfer with Elder Relf, I feel I really grew. When you become a trainer for a new missionary you become more responsible and you literally feel older I'm pretty sure I have a couple of white hairs because of this stress but its all good. Life is hard here for me,  but I have just decided to take it one step at a time and just smile and own it. 

SO far we have been getting lucky with some good food, we had Gabi leaves with fried little fish last night and it was great. Earlier today got to play some volleyball and of course I dominated.  I also got a really gnarly tan, I basically look black i don't know if that good or bad I'll let you decide. I hope everyone is well at home I constantly think of everyone and how they are doing. I hope life is treating you good. As for me I'm loving it. thanks to all of you for the emails they are encouraging and inspiring. I love you all and hope you all have a great week. 

Elder Llorens 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Typhoon Yolanda struck the Philippines a few hours ago. It is the most powerful typhoon to make landfall, with sustained winds of 100 MPH and significant flooding and sea surge.

Elder Llorens is in Naga, in the central Bicol region known as Camrines Sur. (You can see Naga on this map above the two capital "P"s in "Philippines"). They have been under "warning" since yesterday, and probably received heavy rain and winds.

The Naga Philippines mission president sent this email at 4:30 AM our time:

Dear Loved ones,
The typhoon was south of Naga and had little or no impact on our mission. All missionaries have been inside their apartments and are safe. Thank you for your concern and  prayers.

Love, President and Sister Reeder

Prayers for the Philippine people and those who are there to serve.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Week 33

Week 33

So this week was different we were able to witness Halloween and all souls day Filipino style. We had to have curfew because there were a lot of drunk crazy people, especially in our area becasue  we have the 2 biggest cemeteries in all of Naga.  What they do is go to the cemeteries and  basically have a celebration like 4th of July, Picnics, drinking and hanging out with all of their family and friends. I was able to buy some candy at the mall so we stayed in and  had fun. 
 We were able to finally work this week. Elder Relf is at full health. The work is good we were able to give a baptismal invitation to one of our investigators and she accepted and we are still contining to teach one of our other Investigators and hopefully we can give her a baptismal invitation this week as well. We have been talking to people and trying to get return appointments with them. The work has been hard there have been  days that we were only able to get like 1 Lesson in. But a lot of good has been happening behind the scenes. We're trying to work out making a group in one of our areas so people don't have to travel as far. The members are really nice here, later tonight we have a family home evening and then also on Wednesday. Later on this week we have zone training so we'll be able to see all of the missionaries in our zone. But yeah its fun going out and trying to talk to people. I have never talked to this many people before in my life and the weird thing is its in a different language, kind of cool.  We had a couple of our investigators hide from us so that's a little depressing, but that's life as a missionary. 
Transfer announcements are next week and I will find out if I'm transferred or my companion is. Most likely I'm going to train again. I really want a Filipino comapnion so I can better my language skills and also they are legit cooks, lol.
 I have been working out quite a bit and been trying to diet but its no fun trying to do all this stuff and waking up at like 630 am. You literally feel like you just took a nap and you wake up and its the next day and you basically start it all over again. Earlier today I played some basketball of course and I also ate some pig brain, yeah pig brain there really isn't any taste but  its no double double from In-N-out. I was able to work with some members yesterday and try to get them excited about home teaching. And I forgot about this earlier but when we went to a less actives house the tatay (father) told me to sit on a stool looking thing as soon as I sat on it it almost broke, I used my cat like reflexes to get off before I full broke it, but it definitely did crack. (back to the diet!)  I also caught a fish in the rice fields. I used my cat like reflexes and just grabbed it like Mr. Miagge from karate kid, hmm wrong country but you get my drift. But yeah hopefully this week will be better and we can get some good lessons in.  As always thank you for the emails and love you all.
Ingot kayo
Elder Llorens

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Week 33

Week 33

This last week was a bit of a hassle. I had to play daddy. My trainee got Dengue fever so I had to take care of him. But he's good now his case mild thank goodness. But I guess there is no cure for it so you basically rest and let it pass. He was just really light headed/dizzy, threw up a couple of times, dehydrated and yeah stomach pain but he's good now. I just had to feed him and dress him at one point (that spiced things up.

 On  Thursday I was privileged to listen to the area president for the Philippines, President Ardern from New Zealand. He and his wife are great people and they have awesome accents, so listening to them was great. They talked about a lot of things, but you could just tell that he's  a great man and that he really  loves the Lord. It definitely takes someone special to be an area president or and area seventy because its a really hard job. I got to shake his hand and listen to him for a couple hours. He said something that really made me wonder about myslef and all that I have done in my life, this isn't the exact quote but he said this...What think Christ of Me? I am so glad to serve a full time mission for the lord and teach people about his gospel. Its just great to see the change in me and the people here. I know I haven't been a perfect person in my life but I know through this gospel and this doctrine that we can change and be the person we are destined to be. I am grateful to be serving with other young men like myself,  the people of the Bicol region. It truely is the best in all the land.

 Weather update, it somewhat got cold it probably dropped like 2 degrees (whoopee) but its  windy so thats good, it makes it so it feels cooler at least. Later tonight I have a family  home evening and we get to eat Bicol express my favorite food and ice cream for a members birthday. We will teach the family how to play Simon says. So it should be fun, I'm looking forward to it.  I have been really enjoying the christmas lights here and the Christmas music it reminds me of home a lot. But  we have been tracting alot  lately so we can get find some new  investigators. I've  just been telling myself that the worth of every souls is great in the eyes of God. So yeah everyday we have been trying to see if we can contact someone. But hopefully next week we can get in some good work now that my trainee is feeling better.

 Well I can't think of anything else to write, but I really appreciate all the people that have written me and are keeping keeping up with my blog that my mom does. I'm thankful for my family and friends as well. They play a big part in my life. And if you want to learn more about what I really do look for the 2 nearest guys wearing,white shirts, ties and pants with a black name tag that says the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day saints on it . They can tell you a lot about life and some other really neat things.  I love you all and I hope you have a good week.

Elder Llorens

*Sorry for no pictures I am having memory card issues

Monday, October 21, 2013

Week 32

Week 32

Hey so I've got to get this one short because I am e-mailing from the mission home. But Long story short my companion got sick and might have dengue fever. He got sick on Thursday and has  just been getting worse. He's been super light headed and has a pretty good fever, chills, a lot of sweat, and he has blown chunks a few times. But hey its okay, he just looks like he just got hit by a train. UGH!  So Sunday I took him to The E.R. but  that was weird doing it all in Tagalog. And honestly I never took my own self to the E.R. so it was a sweet experience, definitely boosted my week. (mom where are you??JK) So yeah tomorrow I get to take him back and get another Blood test and urine test so that should be just great. Really hoping its not Dengue fever because the recovery is long and slow.  But yeah  I have been really bored this week since Thursday.  I've been just watching all those new bible videos on  and watched conference talks again on my usb. But hey its been fun taking care of a sick person. Feeding him and kind of dressing him and giving him medicine. When one missionary is down his companion stays with him, no one is left behind!!  It just makes for a long days since we are limited on what we can do.

Before he got sick  the work was going great ! If we would have kept up how we were going the first part  of the week we would have broken our number for the highest amount of lessons. But hey its all good thankful that we are working to get him some what better. But  I have to take him back home he's not looking so good at the moment, Thanks for all the email sorry if i didn't get a chance to email back.

 Love you bye

Elder Llorens

Side Note:  Seth told us that the earthquake did not affect where he is at.  But that he has roommates from Cebu who haven't heard from their families. He said they are hoping for the best.

Week 31

Week 31

What's up my Naga followers?  So this week  was pretty okie dokie. This week there were transfers so we got a new zone leader and 2 new guyin the, "apartment of awesome." 2 elders from Cebu (another island in the Philippines) and ones a master chef.  So I have gained 5 pounds from this past week. The biggest high light was Genereal Conference.
Basically general conference is a semiannual thing that our church has that we are able to see the Prophet and his Apostles and his counselors speak to all that who watch.We went to the Canaman stake center to watch it and it was great to see that the stake center was
full of members to watch and listen to the prophet. It  really built my testimony because they all are not the best at English and because they were faithful and they sacrificed there money for food this week so they could come and see and listen to a prophet of God who receives revelation for the world. 

I think my favorite talk was about Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, about persecution and why we have it. really made sense to me and seeing all of these people here that are literally
persecuted everyday. In my last area in Buhi and here it just seems to be all the main problems are family or something happened and that they have not overcome it in their lives. So that was great and it also applies to all that are being persecuted today, young or old ,graduate or student, father or mother.  Its applies to all and that we can be feel
comforted. Probably the best thing I've listened to in a while. And of course another great one was President Monson's, but they were all great! So try and listen. I encourage you all to listen to them and study them in your heart and mind.

 But  funny thing this week I burned my hand pretty good. It blistered and then I popped it but yeah not to bad ,but its definitely a brand. At night our roommates have been playing card games and one funny thing is that one loser ...Elder Colipapa had to
eat a chili and that was funny, and the other loser had to do the cinnamon challenge..Elder Balad.   The work is good its the beginning of a new transfer and I can't wait to see what happens. Sorry to all that I couldn't respond to, the internet shop that I'm in has the worst connection. So yeah salamat tabi sa lahat. but yeah you guys are awesome and I can't tell you how much  I miss you... love you all and I'll see you all in  close to a year...

To legit to quit!

Elder "Pogi" Llorens

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Week 30

Week 30

Hey what's shaken? So this week was another good one not a shocker but hey rather it be a good than a bad one. So the cool things that happened this week are we had a Zone training  and right before we had it I saw a member from Buhi my last area and got to talk to her and see how everyone was doing, that was legit to talk to Mama JOY again. She used to feed us and let us hang out with her family and have family home evening with them.  It was really great to talk to her and see her again. 

The night before we had exchanges I was able to work in Milaor and have a party (really just hanging out)  like a regular missionary again with Elders Grospe, Rogers, and Alecoseba. Rogers is legit hes from Hamilton, New Zealand.  We got to hang and mess around. We also went to a members house and had a family home evening and ate there and just had fun. They don't have electricity so we had to bring our flash lights and party spirits which is mine and Elder Rogers specialty. So that was a great night . We ended up talking til like 1 in the morning, talking about life, movies and a little Imagine Dragons and of course girls haha.

Party Crew

Than this week Elder Relf and I had an investigator that ended up praying to know if what we were telling him about the church was true and he said he got an awesome feeling one he can't really describe, but he said it was cool.  I told him that was the holy ghost telling him the truth. But even better he works 8pm to 8am in the morning. He prayed the night before got that confirmation and after work he saw a bunch of people wearing white shrits so he's like huh, wait that might be the mormons, he was correct hahaha.  We had a good lesson about the plan of salvation after church so he still hadn't gone to sleep and he was wide awake.   He didnt really care about sleeping , he really wanted to know what our purpose on earth is and what happens when we die and where do we go. So that was awesome. and to top it off we got another new investigator.  She's in her 40s and is progressing and told us shes really want to go to general confrence and see the prophet and the apostols that are alive now. Estig!

So yeah a pretty solid week did some tracting got shut down pretty good, but i think it'll come later on in this transfer hopefully. We will just keep trying. Elder Relf  and I are now done with our 1st transfer together. , that means half way done with training. Elder Thunell is going home he's our Zone Leader and he was our room mate in the house.  Elder La'ulu was my comp in Buhi and he's going home as well. Elder Guanio, leaving, is awesome they are all awesome but I'm going to miss them. But yeah I think  I got a little lucky, I got fed by Brother Willie he' a the security guard for the mission home. Good food.  Thanks to everyone for the emails your awesome and can't wait to hear from you again.
Elder POGI Llorens

Monday, September 30, 2013

Week 29

Week 29

Appointment Time

Okie dokie I know I keep saying  this but.. it  was a great week once again. The only thing that has been horrible is  I lost my umbrella and I have been getting some gnarly head aches from the weather here because it'll be sunny in the morning then lunch time comes around and it is pouring, 3oclock is sunny then 3 hours later its pouring again soo I am stuck in inception I guess... can't get out unless you kill me so

 The work is awesome I love it here and am no longer home sick. I'm just having fun really and just enjoying my time here. I want to  share that when we walking home from an appointment my trainee got whacked in the face from an airsoft gun. HEHE... and speaking of guns we stole some nerf guns from some other elders and we had a serious fire fight in our apartment and it was way legit.  It's the little things that keep us sane.

Food Adventures..Funny thing I ate chicken feet for the second time here on my mission it's okay, the  taste differs really depending on how it s prepared. Sometimes they cook it in this sauce here called adobo and its glorious, but chicken feet are just mostly skin and little to zero meat  but its good.  My favorite meal here by the way is called bicol express. (Wish I knew what it was but he didn't say :()

The teaching has been good.  We had  like 2 dinner appointments this week and a Family Home Evening so that was legit. So different, better than not really have dinner appointments. I'm thankful to be in an area with so many members.

 I went to this place here in Naga called Marantz and they customize suits and pants so I ordered a custom pant for only 15 $ so well see how it goes. I should get them next week. And when I leave I'm getting a custom suit with a flag of the philippines on it so its going to be awesome. Uh huh!

 Elder Relf and I are just on fire! We are  living the life, reading the scriptures everyday and praying and sharing messages to all who want to hear.  Training life's good, busy and fun can't complain.

 I would like to give a shout out to the Brian Sutherland who did a legit triathlon and tore it up. If your wondering how I know I have some hook ups...CIA no big deal.   I hope all is good I think about you all, all the time and miss you wish you all the best. Shoot me an email about questions and that goes to people that don't know me and are preparing to go to the Philippines and want to know about some stuff, anyways. thanks again...
Only easy day was yesterday.
Elder Pogi Llorens

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Week 28

Week 28

Maray na hapon po and mga Pogi's. This week was another sweet week. The work has been great, so far this week we killed it we've taught the  highest amount of lessons and they have been solid.   Another Highlight of the week has been the "Pena Francia Celebration" this is celebrating the mother Mary, but besides the religious stuff they had some awesome military marching parades and majorettes and it was a blast! Even though we got a lot of lessons this week it was super hard to get to our area due to the closed roads.  The cathedral is in our area and  it was packed. But it was a super cool environment .

 I had my first dinner appointment with my whole mission and it was great. It was with the security guard who guards the mission home. He lives in our area his name is Brother Willie and  he's a the coolest ever and the funniest. He's like 60 years old and he could kill  you easily no joke!  

This week we also went to the Mariano family's house and have an family home evening with them and were going to have a BBQ pork thing basically its a pig with a stake through it and were going to slow roast it. anyways the Mariano family is like the family we go to all the time and they take care of us and they really enjoy it when we come and teach them and they are super great.  We taught a couple of new investigators this week so its been a good week over all.

 Thanks for all the emails. the Typhoon that hit wasn't near me but all the wind came my way and it felt great. Tomorrow I have a trainers training workshop and the last time I went to that was like 7 months ago when I first got here and its crazy cool how fast life has been going! Now I'm going for my trainee "aki"... But yeah salamat sa lahat and mga emails ipinadala ninyo sa akin. at salamat sa dios para sa pakakatoan nagmymysion ako dito sa naga Philippines mission. maraming salmat sa Pamilya ko para sa lahat giniagawa ninyo sa akin din. Mahal ko kayo. ingot salamat ulit.  (No translation)

Kitakits Elder "pogi" Llorens

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Week 27

Week 27

Okay so this week was stellar. Well, first we didn't have too many lesson because all of or most of our lessons are with females and we're not allowed to go in to the house unless there is a responsible male there,  so no bastos can happen. SO yeah that was a bummer so we tried tracking... that didn't work out so well either. But I have a hook up and I ordered one of those Illegal Chinese lasers and its legit it can be seen so far,, just kidding but I got your attention! But yeah I made pancakes a lot this week I have it down to a science, bananas and brown sugar is the secret. I also made tacos the other day and yes those were glorious also. This week everyone in our apartment got really sick. (my cooking?)  NO, it was really bad headaches, sore throats, runny noses, and ache joints. There's a really bad dengue virus going around but I dont think we got it, if we had it we would just want to shoot ourselves, we have some missionaries in the hospital from it and they are in pretty bad shape. But yeah we're slowly getting better.  Cool story we are partying to Christmas songs in September and its pretty fun makes it feel like its November. We went working yesterday and yeah its like 830 at night we just got done with a lesson and we wanted to go home but there was one more less active house in this area and it was a little walk we decided what the heck lets try it. The parents weren't there but the daughter who is a member was there and her "friend". Long story short the "friend" has been taught all the lesson and believes everything and hopefully he'll get baptized in October. So yeah blessings from working when we were sick. GO team Onan. At the same time in our area we are trying to look for a new building so that the members can go  to church closer to where they live because now they have to take a 2 ride system going one way to church and its really expensive for them. So me and Elder Relf are being awesome and  trying to find a good meeting house so they can go to church more easily. Elder Relf and I  are just being bosses and taring it up here but at the same time being very classy, but none the less we are  knocking down doors, LOL.
Thats all for now thanks for all the emails. 

mahal ko kayo lahat.

Elder Llorens  peace

Monday, September 9, 2013

Week 26

Week 26

So this has been a really sweet week. We finally saw our whole area, now we dont need to coordinate with other elders too see when they are free to show us around.  The work is good took, I took Elder Relf out for the first couple of days and showed him how to tract and honestly not too bad. We did really well and it was a fun experience. Together we are just having a blast.  At night time were having a blast with the Zone Leaders and  the supply elders. We just mess around,  it mostly involves make shift air soft guns, darts and poker on Friday, haha just kidding or am I?
Me and my companion and the zone leaders in the car

 We had Zone training this week and it was fun, I got to see who all is in our Zone.  So yeah the rumors are true, Christmas starts in September and yeah Im already in the Christmas spirit.! But  this week is Pena Francia which is the fiesta here in NAGA and its a huge party they have like a gold pyramid here and when they have the  parade anyone who touches it becomes healed. We probably will not  be allowed to work because it literally happens where our apartment is and were not going to be able to get through the crowds! Its going to be awesome to watch , but I bet its going to get weird too! Any ways the Catholic church does it and they think they will be healed when they touch it. i I'll try and get some gnalry pictures of it. There's probably going to be some "patays"  so that'll just add to the awesomeness. 

 We would have had a lot of lessons this week but all of our ward missionaries bailed on us everyday .... it was bakla. But we got to ride with President Reeder,our mission President, this week and show him our area because they are thinking of putting a group here. It would be closer to go to church in our area than driving into Naga every Sunday. It's so exciting the church is growing, but the bad thing is that we would have to change apartments and that means no air so  we'll see what happens.  That would also mean no more restaurants either.  I'm pretty sure I'm gaining weight back since there's a McDonald's in our area and restaurants that are flippin really "masirup" great. 

Anyways yes its raining and humid so nothing has changed with the weather.   Umm this last Sunday was Stake conference here and this chapel or "stake center" was packed and we had people in every room listening to the speakers and it was great. So we are going to need a new stake center here in Naga. So cool the Church is growing here and the only real obstacle  is the expenses to come to church. A lot more people would come if they could financially afford to.  Transportation can be expensive into the city.  This week has been sweet thanks for all fo the emails again. I have the best friends ever!  Thanks again and I'll See you later my NAGA's

Elder "POGI" Llorens

Monday, September 2, 2013

Week 25

Week 25 September 2, 2013

So its been a really great week here in the Philippines. I ended up getting transfered and  opening a new area and training all at once so its a little frustrating.  But it's all worth it because I am now finally assigned sa NAGA; wooo the City!  I have everything; a good apartment with air conditioning at night and all the restaurants; but all i need is more money a and a car!

The ward is awesome and super cool a lot of support and yeah just loving it right now but  the work is going to be hard. All of those non dinner appointments are going to pay off... got a dinner appointment at 7 and its going to be delicious!!!!! 

I worked for a little bit in Milaor; its about 15 mins out of Naga City and that was cool a good area. It's super fun to be a training elder; so far its a great experience my "anak" child or trainee is Elder Relf from Sandy Utah.  He's awesome and a good missionary. It's hard determining our area boundaries and just finding stuff but its cool well figure it out. The weather is still hot and humid and rains once in a while during the week. I'm really liking the air conditioning at night time but its soon going to end our apartment is really far from our area so we have to commute a little farther than we want. There were 6 elders in an apartment including Elder Finley again. We are going to get an apartment closer to our assigned area so its easier to get to. 

Its been great here in the mission; I gave my testimony this last Sunday at church, saying the Church is true and that I'm loving the land and the people and I know that the Lord is truly hastening his work, that God knows each and everyone one of us personally and wants the best for us. 

Its been a great week and I'm sure this week is going to be better. Thanks for the emails this week they were awesome but I can't write back a lot; I need to get ready for later. I love you all and thanks you all for the encouragement and the support.

Elder Llorens

P.S. and funny you should mention christmas; guess what christmas starts right now in the philippines. Until christmas (Is that weird?) so they are going to be playing random christmas songs soon hahaha. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Week 24

Week 24

So this has been a very wild week for me and my companions. Today it flooded really bad. I woke up to my companions saying, "ohhh no that's not good."  I get up and I was like this isn't good. We looked form the balcony and saw our whole area was flooded and was continue to flood. 

So that's why you need a 72 hours kit here. We had to text the APs for their advise. I asked our apartment landlord and her family if we needed to leave and they said in an hour it will go down. I had my doubts...  but it went down in an hour so it was fine.  I got some funny pictures.

I went to take a picture in a tree, when I went to put my foot up, all of a sudden I saw an Ahas or snake.. so yeah didn't climb it. 

Went to Iriga got food now I'm here. SO  I found out that I'm training and opening a new area again. So yes the stress continues big time. This whole week we were focusing on our baptismal canidate for this Saturdays baptism, but we had some set backs and I wont be the one to baptize her. I'm  really really bummed for that because I've been teraching her for like 3 months and now I'm transfered. So I didn't take that very well... because i ended up buying a new Canon camera, Super sick hopefully you can see the difference form the pictures.

 But tomorrow I leave for Naga and then Thursday I report to the Mission Home so that's when I find out about my new companion and my new area. Get to work in an other area for one day while I wait.  I'll have 3 other companions working with me there, one of them Is Elder Cawit  I've been working with here in Buhi with him but he transfered also. So yeah Elder Cawit, ME and the elder that I'm following right now Elder Lapana are now Buntis or pregnant (term used when they start training a new missionary) so were going to have our new kids soon. So yeah pretty crazy.  But yeah I am really disappointed that I'm leaving this area I really loved it here and the people so I hope the new Elders replacing us feel the way that me and Elder Cawit did. But I'm excited hopefully my area is a good one and so is my kid.  

Thanks for the emails from everyone they are really great. And shout out to the Jake "the snake" Levine who was in the hospital. Your a knuckle head. Hope everyone is good and I'll talk to you guys next week.


Elder Llorens

Week 23

Week 23
Getting ready for dinner..

This week was really strange, So Monday was legit got to play basketball in Iriga again and I was showing off my Kobe Bryant magic, but like Kobe I injured my ankle so its killing me. Tuesday we went to our far area to teach one of our less actives and we had a really great lesson, it was good but it took us all day to get come back because there was no tricey so we decided to walk 30 mins later we started running away from this storm that was chasing us but we weren't that fast, it  caught us. so yeah  we just got wet again...  Wednesday was good  we taught the little girl we were going to baptize so that was legit. But  Wednesday was the highlight of my week. we challenged 2 of our investigators to baptism  and they both accepted and one of them I personally found. I was just feeling awesome can't really explain the feeling when they said yes. The next day I gave the workshop in our district meeting and it went really well and it was fun. On friday we went back to the investigator that were were going to baptize this Saturday if everything goes smoothly.  we also went to one of the less actives that have been less active since like 2006 and we had to cross  a sketchy bridge it was  50ft in the air and everytime we walked across it something fell off of it. I had to literally help elder Lapana over it.. he's scared of heights hahaha. Anyways I got a text from the investigator that I personally found and she said you guys can't come to the appointment because she is at the bus stop going to Manila to work there and she doesn't know when she's going to be back... My heart was crushed this means basically all the lessons we taught her went out the window just like that. I'm trying to get her address so I can contact the Elders in manila. But yeah I am crushed. Sunday the other investigator didnt go to church we waited at her house for an hour to talk to her she wasn't their on the way back however we saw a member and he called us over and introduced us to a friend so we got a refferal 5 minutes later. Estig! We saw him again talking to someone different he invited us to talk to them its a girl and a grandpa, the daughter spoke perfect english to me....  I found out the grandpa was a contractor and had built some of our churches so its a good lead it made up from the crappy week.   I have been reading the Book of Mormon this week and it has been helping me out a lot. On Saturday I see if I'm going to stay, get transfered or train so this is going to be a good week hopefully. As always thanks to  everyone for the email they always make me feel great . 

Elder Llorens

Monday, August 12, 2013

Week 22

Week 22

Typhoon Utor

We did not receive an update yet this week.  We did hear from Seth and typhoon Utor  passed over his area bringing heavy rain and winds, but he is safe and said he was enjoying the cool (as in temperature)
weather we will let you know if we hear anything else.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Week 21

Week 21

Disclaimer from mom: the blog is not in the correct order because I somehow skipped a week :( So be sure to read the previous entry to catch up, it's a good one!!

New Companions!

So another great week. This week we were able to meet everyone in our zone and we had a zone confrence with our new President and the APPs and that was a really sweet experience and yeah I played the piano not to bad. Afterward we feasted on fried chicken and that was flippin good!

 The week was slow due to the elements there was a lot of rain and none of our drivers that drive the triceys wanted to take us to our area and our area is too far to walk maybe 2 hour walk and that wouldn't have worked out because it was raining so hard. So one of the people we were going to teach lives across this bridge but the bridge that goes to her house got washed away so hopefully the weather is better this week. 

 We had a really good lesson this week with one of our investigaotrs and it was the first time I taught about the first vision and  The Restoration of the church.. ibinabumbalik ang simbahan. That was a really great experience one that I can't really explain that well but it was definitely a great experience.  This is one of the reasons why I'm here for sure. But yeah not to many crazy things happened lately,  just some funny bathroom stories that I dont think I can talk about, not about me but my room mates and yeah a funny story about me doing push ups but that will have to be told another day haha. 

 Congrats to my cousin who finished basic. And I hate all of you who are having a great summer. But thank you all for the awesome emails. You are all great and keep them up!!!

 OO astig ng lingo na ito. at thankful ako para sa lahat ng kayo.lahat kayo ay sobrung mangandand mga kaibigan sa akin and mamaiss ko kayo. but mahal ko lahat kayo. sige na ingot kayo  No translation provided :(

Elder "POGI" Llorens