Thursday, December 31, 2015

Gift Room Gratitude!

Dear Family and Friends:
Celebration of the long Philippines Christmas season has come to an end.  In the Philippines Angeles Mission, the apex of our Christmas celebration took place on December 23rd and 24th with our Christmas Conference.  On each of those days, we hold a day long half-mission Conference.  Our missionaries really look forward to our Christmas gatherings and the 2015 Christmas Conference did not disappoint!

Our Christmas Conferences are planned to uplift and encourage the missionaries and brighten their lives with the true spirit of Christmas.  During the seven hours together, we do a little mission business, have some delightful Christmas activities and, of course, provide a good measure of spiritual celebration.  The highlight of the day includes the Christ-centered Christmas program and the missionary Gift Room. 

During the Christmas Program, the missionaries gave each other the gift of Christmas spirit through a beautifully written scriptural narration and stirring Christmas music.  Because of your generosity, the missionaries were also able to visit the Gift Room to select much needed gifts for their companions.  The Gift Room was stocked with white shirts, ties, socks, belts, skirts and blouses, umbrellas, watches and toiletries - all provided through your generosity.  Each missionary is invited to go to the Gift Room to select items “needed” by their companion.  Thankfully, because of your gracious giving, the Gift Room meets the “needs” of the missionaries and provides much appreciated gifts for all of our missionaries. This year donor kindness also provided new shoes for thirteen of our missionaries who were working in unfit and uncomfortable footwear.

The true beauty of the room is not in the gifts themselves but in the sweet spirit of giving it fosters.  For some of our missionaries, the Gift Room provides the opportunity of giving their first Christmas gift ever!  The beautiful principle of, “It is better to give then to receive,” is manifest in the Christmas Gift Room.

So we say thank you and include a few photos so you can share the memories. 

Your contribution made a big difference in a young missionary’s life this year.  They and we will forever be thankful!


President and Sister Clark
Philippines Angeles Mission

We thought you might like the note from one of our missionaries.

“I'm grateful for the Christmas conference last Thursday it was really good i learn a lot…
i am grateful for all the blessings that i receive this Christmas. The gifts I get from my companion and the person who give me money to buy shoes to continue to work. i don't know who gave it but thank you for that person. :) it make me cry and smile :) i am grateful for hardship in our work and in everything. i know that Heavenly father really love me because i am a child of God.”

Packages were delivered for our Gift Room from 
some missionary moms and dads!
We also received donations from wonderful 
Ward Members from back home.
We sure had fun shopping for the last minute goods.

Our only Senior Couple, the Whiting's, did a fabulous job setting up and manning the Gift Room.

Our missionary's companions loved their gifts.
Thank you, thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

Batch #13 --- "You're Number One!"

December 29, 2015

Here is our 13th Batch of Departing Missionaries. The three words that make this batch special is "You're Number One." Don't get me wrong. We love all of our missionaries the same. Pero, these Sisters had our hearts from the very beginning of their missions. They were our first missionaries to arrive when we arrived. Although the Elders were here earlier than that by a few months we've loved seeing their successes and challenges. Well done our Angeles Missionaries. We sure love you!

I love these pictures because you can see such growth and maturity from start to finish.  They are refined and strengthened as full-time missionaries.  The experiences they have been through will continue to mold and assist them through their lives!


Friday, December 25, 2015

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Maligayang Pasko ---- Merry Christmas!

DECEMBER 25, 2015


NOVEMBER 27, 2015

We serve in a country that is not afraid to openly love God.  The Philippines is the only Asian country that is predominantly Christian.  And it is extremely Christian.  This is very apparent as we travel around, especially at Christmas time.  The Christmas season goes from September through December.  Numerous nativities come out about the end of October.  They are everywhere you go.  The Filipino people certainly embrace the spirit of Christmas and love of the Savior.  Nativities are everywhere: the mall, McDonald's, the hospital, the grocery stores, banks, government offices and the army base.  Not much "political correctness" here. There is Christmas music playing loud and and long passers-by frequently humming or singing out loud.  Publicly They Believe!!!!

This nativity backdrop at the SM Mall is made from plastic bottles.  It was truly remarkable.
This is the largest nativity in our area.  It has music playing and often there is a Santa shaking hands with the onlookers.  The nativity backdrop is made out of old CD's.  It is on the main road that we travel each day.  There have been many evenings the road is blocked off to one lane causing quite a traffic jam.  That doesn't seem to be a problem just as long as people 
are allowed to enjoy the nativity.
This nativity is at the entrance of a hotel in town.  Kind of simple and elegant. 
This is a giant tree near the city offices.  It is so colorful and different then any other.  
At the base of the tree is the nativity.
Here is a story book version of the Holy Night so long ago.  They are all so different and creative.

Glory to God in the High.  Peace on Earth Good Will Toward Men!