Every Mission President is blessed to have two Assistants called from among the Elders in the mission. These Assistants to the President usually serve for 3 to 5 months in the Mission Office. They are called to be exemplary leaders and teachers. We gratefully "inherited" from President and Sister Martino, Elder Tsunoda and Elder Briscoe. They have been superb servant leaders from the very first day. We would be lost (both literally and figuratively) without them. This past week they really shined as they managed the Mission Tour so we could pay attention to our guests. They keep us on our toes and with smiles on our faces. We think AP stands for Absolutely Perfect!
Gathering the troops --- sort of.
Enjoying a break with Elder Howlett
Trying on suit coats of departing missionaries - A bit snug...and a bit big. We surely love our Assistants!
Every year each mission in the church is toured by a General Authority. He (sometimes accompanied by his spouse) comes to travel about the mission and evaluates the missionary work. This includes traveling to different chapels in the mission for conferences with the missionaries, a review of statistical performance, sometimes inspections of missionary apartments and lots and lots of time with the Mission President and his wife (we think the primary reason is checking up on us). :)
This past week our mission was toured by President Ian S. Ardern and his wife Paula. He is the President of the Philippines area of the church and lives in Manila. The Ardern's are New Zealanders and have great accents! They are wonderful gospel teachers and great church leaders. Our missionaries loved listening to them.
We had a Missionary Leadership Conference meeting on Tuesday at our home. Sis. Ardern instructed our leaders on how to "ask, seek and knock." President Ardern taught how to teach people not lessons. He said, "as you live principles they become values that you defend to the death."
You can see that our MLC loves getting together!
Wednesday and Thursday we had 1/2 mission conferences. One was in Cabanatuan and one in Tarlac. Each was attended by about 125 missionaries. We had great instruction. The Ardern's inspired and uplifted our missionaries with their love and wisdom.
Baler, Bongabon, Cabanautuan, Guimba, Gapan and San Jose Zones
Tarlac, Angeles, Santa Ignacia, Camiling and Paniqui Zones
After lunch our missionaries sang our mission song, "Where the Finest Serve."
Tuesday and Wednesday evenings were time for us to dine with the Ardern's, become better acquainted and learn more about our leadership duties. We gained a deep respect for the Ardern's as they have lived away from home in church service for most of the past 10 years. We were greatly benefited by their visit and are honored to count them as friends.
Oh how we love these friends! They are the senior missionary couples in our mission who make things run smoothly. They do so much Mission Office Administration, Apartment Inspections, Family History Specialists, Lost Sheep Program Administration and Self Reliance Directors, plus much, much, more. They are the eyes and ears of a Mission President across the mission. These amazing couples make our job so much easier and make the younger missionary's lives happier. We had a delicious meal and great discussion after our Transfer Week. These are great servants of The Lord and it is a pleasure serving alongside them.
Here they are! Our First Incoming Batch! They are 20 amazing missionaries from different lands but with one purpose, to teach truth to the people of the Philippines.
OUR FIRST BATCH - August 13, 2014
Our first new batch of missionaries (Trainees) arrived last Wednesday. Oh how we anticipated receiving all 20 of them at once. We looked over their information and imagined what it would be like when they arrived. They did not disappoint! They are a terrific batch of 10 Sisters and 10 Elders. They each were assigned a Trainer who will show them the ropes for 12 weeks. The process of chosing 20 of our best teachers was nothing less than miraculous. It will be fun watching them learn and grow in the Philippines Angeles Mission!