Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Marching into 2016: Mission Odds and Ends

We are concentrating on “March Momentum” in the Angeles Mission.  Our 2016 mission theme is built around ministry (“make thee a minister and a witness” - Acts 26:15) and we are creating energy and enthusiasm as able ministers of Jesus Christ.   The first three months of the year have been remarkable.  We’ve had very powerful and unique experiences in early 2016 which are now propelling us to greater things as a mission.  

Below are some of the additional events that take place and are often unseen but a great mission memory nonetheless.   

Our Mission Presidency is complete again.  After Elder Naegle left, there was a vacancy in the Presidency.  We are pleased to welcome President Cruz as second counselor and Elder Whiting as secretary.  President Zapanta has been called as a Mission President in the Naga Mission.  He will soon leave us but what a great counselor he is and has been.

Angeles Mission Presidency - Pres. Zapanta, 1st Counselor, President Clark, President Cruz, 2nd Counselor, Elder Whiting, Secretary

While in Baler last month, we went to Dipaculau to sacrament meeting.  There are so many things to love about Dipaculau; the members, the building, the feeling of love for the gospel.  The Relief Society choir sang.  They did a beautiful job and wanted a picture with us afterward.  How we love our Baler saints!

Last January our daughter Mikale's in-laws were teaching English in China.  They came to visit us for a few days.  Their assignment in China was completed.  They saw that we were in desperate need of senior couples.  Because of different commitments they were unable to fulfill a full-time mission so they did the next best thing.  They are giving us 4 solid months of 24/7 assistance in so many areas in our mission.   We are grateful to Brother Ron and Sister Diana Williamson for their incredible help.  They found a little motor scooter to get them from their room to the church or wherever they need to be. Pretty darn cute and the stares they get are priceless!                                                                          

Our cute missionaries bought a cake to help us celebrate 35 glorious years of marriage.  How is it that every day gets better than the days, months and years before!  (The poncho was a gift from one of our Returned Missionaries, Bro. Mabalot.)

Here are the Bishops and wives of Cabanatuan!  It was fun meeting them at a local restaurant.  Everyone was well fed then the fun began.  Speaking and introductions in the microphone was a treat.  President Clark then taught them why our mission does what it does.  He asked for questions then answered them in such a way that the Bishop's and Stake leaders had greater appreciation for the need to work together.

Holy Cow....Look who's 60!  Sister Whiting came all the way to the Philippines to celebrate her 60th birthday!  So maybe that's a bit of a stretch but we are so grateful that she and Elder Whiting have come miles and miles to serve the Lord and all of us in the Angeles Mission!  

The big celebration!

Our first senior couple's outing in 2016 was a trip to the 4D Theatre and Clark Museum.  We had fun exploring the area and ended up lunching at the Gas Station Restaurant.  American Cuisine is a featured favorite at the restaurant.  You can even purchase a steak and buy big chunks of cheese.

Tarlac Stake had their Conference a few weeks ago.  Sister Clark was asked to speak with the Sisters Auxiliary leaders during the Priesthood session of Conference.  The high council room was full to the brim with bright and talented sister leaders.  It was great to listen to them and add a portion of the learning and support their training.  Sister Clark's topic was one of her latest favorites; Sabbath Day Observance.   After the Saturday night session, one of the Bishop's and his daughter presented their self portrait of Sister Clark as a Filipina.  Sweet!
On the other side of this posted note "tender mercy wall" sits Sister Whiting.  When the Whiting's arrived they filled the glass jar on top of the desk with candy.  Next to it sits a set of sticky notes.  Whenever one of our missionary's needs a little pick-me-up of chocolate or sugar, they write on the post-it note something that they have gratitude for...a tender mercy in their life.  This fills our office with sweet remembrances on how much, large or small, we are grateful for.  

This is a small glimpse into our mission life.  While our missionaries are our first and foremost loved responsibility, there are many other incredible events that shape us all here in the Philippines.  

Mahal kita!

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