Monday, August 31, 2015

August 31, 2015

What another great week. So I might answer some questions you might be having. So I kind of have two companions right now. Elder Miner is my proselyting companion from Orem Utah. And his job in the office is supply manager. So when we go our proselyting he is my comp. But if I am in the office. Elder Ramos is my companion. He is 27 years old and hasn't been home in the last 5 years. He served in the Military for 3 years and applied for a mission while he was in the military and the Military released him one day before he was supposed to go into the MTC. So pretty sweet story. He has 5 weeks left and he can go home.

So this week has been full of firsts. I got my license and right after that my first time driving I had to pick up the mission Presidents wife from the airport. So ya I was nervous....there are some rules that just don't apply here I guess. Its super fun tho! So this last week was transfers so really busy here. Missionaries going home and new missionaries coming in. When missionaries go home President takes them to a super nice place to eat and we get to come!

Yesterday we talked to Bishop about having a home teaching caravan because there are just so many inactive members its pretty crazy walking down the streets and how many people will tell you that they have been baptized but don't go to church anymore. We tried it this morning and it was so sweet. A lot of support from the members and they were all given names to go find and check up on and invite them back to church. Then we came back and reported what happened. There were some really sweet experiences of the inactive members so happy that they were visited and came with the members back to the church to eat lunch and to thank everyone for doing the activity. SUPER SUCCESSFUL!! The ward is now planning on doing this every month!!! Its going to help a ton!

Benji and Melvin Canlas got baptized on Saturday!!!! They both are so awesome and are preparing to get the priesthood and someday go on a mission. What a huge affect their decision to get baptized is going to have on their life. It leads to so much more joy and happiness!

A quick shout out to Easton scoring a touchdown in his football game!!! So proud of him what a good kid who tries so hard at everything he does!!! How about Brooklyn in Jr. High WHAT???? yup they are growing up:(

My ward here is amazing. The people here are seriously the elite!!! They are filled with understanding and shine with the Light of Christ which is real! This church is really true and effecting peoples lives around the world so much more than I ever thought! This work is truly amazing and divinely guided. I feel so blessed to have this short opportunity to share it full time.

O got a very sweet phone call from my last companion at a house of the  Lago family in my last area. They just finished their baptismal interview for this Saturday. I was able to talk to them and congratulate them. They were so excited and shared with me their testimony. Words could now describe how sweet that conversation was. I love love love much. I love my mission and love this country!!!
Palangga ko gid kamo
Halong permi
Kabalo ko gid matuod ang ini na simbahan!

Elder Jackson Erik Craythorne

The picture where we have lipstick on us the tall missionary in the back in my proselyting companion. So after 4p.m. I go out with him to work. His name is Elder Miner from Orem. But Elder Ramos is the other AP which in my other companion.

The picture inside the church was after our home teaching caravan where we were given a bunch of names and went two by two to locate them and see if they moved or are still there just less active. It was a big success and the first time that the ward has tried it. We showed them a video on how it works and decided to try it in our ward. They loved it and want to do it every week. This is going to explode the attendance of this Ward. Everyone is excited and after we come in for some good food. Pretty sweet:)

Monday, August 24, 2015

August 24th 2015

Well I am officially in the 3rd area. Even though transfers aren't until next week! I got a call on Monday from President saying that I would be have to make my way to the office on Tuesday after District Meeting. So that was fast and also unexpected. It was really sad that I couldn't say goodbye to all the members and investigators but we woke up early to say some goodbyes which was nice!

This week has been like nothing I have ever experienced on my mission. There is a lot done here in the office and I am still not sure where I fit in to the whole scheme of things. You are very close to President and get to see lots of other missionaries which is also nice. I am also going to get my license tomorrow! Driving in the Philippines!!!!!!

So it is really different but I know  I can learn a lot in this situation and I am going to just take it head on and try to let it change me! So I am now in Arevalo Ward which is the strongest ward I have been in yet. The Priesthoods classes separates and everything its great and lots of great families who I already love so much. "First impression is everlasting" So I have been working my tail off this week to try and leave a nice first impression in my area to build good relationships here as well! 

Even though we are in the office we got some good work in and had a sweet experience. They were showing me some members and we went to one less active member named Beo. We were talking to her for a while and it started raining really hard. Then a lady walked in who decided to teach instead of the less active member. It was a beautiful discussion about families and she opened up to us on how she decided to come to Beo's house which was pretty cool. She just met this lady Beo at the hospital a few days ago where they became friends. This lady was so impressed with Beo that she wanted to go visit her. She said that she went to her house but got shy because she just met Beo a few days ago and that it might be awkward she she walked away and she said when she walked away the wind blew her umbrella really strong towards the direction of Beo's house. Like I said it was a pretty good storm. She said she is a religious lady and took it as a sign that she need to her house. Little did she know that there were two Americans in that house with a message for her!:) So she is great and knows that there is something that Heavenly Father wants her to know. She did admit that she is very active as a Catholic but gave us her address and phone number to meet her family this week. So we will see how that one goes! To be real that was really cool. Again seeing the hand of God in missionary work. 

Like I said this is going to be a different couple of transfers here but I know that I have something I need to learn here and I accept that. A big shout out to Ryker with a beautiful deer and a pick 6 late in the 4th quarter to win the game!!! Taught him everything he knows;) Ha ha But everyone deserves a shout out because every one is just doing so good at home and am so proud of everyone! I love you all family:)

Alright well I am off again and love you all so much. I have such a beautiful family cheering me on at home and I feel your prayers here on the other side of the world!


Elder Jackson Erik Craythorne

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

August 19th 2015

'musta na kamo? Crazy week this week! Like I said last week our main job this week was to go to three different towns and try to find apartments that can work at the same time for a meeting house to start the church. President Aquino really is in expansion mode and wants to give the people there a chance to hear the Gospel. Elder Dacutan and walked all over those towns looking for apartments. Its easier to find people to teach than finding apartments in the Philippines:)
We were able to find nice places to have church but the prices were more than our budget could do so the next time we came back we brought some of those chocolate chip cookies that you guys sent in my package to try and build their trust and get them to give us a deal. We told them why we need it so bad and how good having missionaries would be for their city. And boy did it work! They bit hard and we were able to get them to fit in the budget. The place is so ready for missionaries and will progress so well. I know that it wasn't just us but Heavenly Father is very involved in those simple things like His meetinghouses. I am sure those Great Harvest chocolate chip cookies helped as well. So thanks for sending those:)
We also had a scary experience on Thursday night around midnight. To make a long story short. The sister missionaries called us and told us that someone broke into their apartment and they were hiding in their bathroom but could hear someone walking around! So we hurried over their and they were freaking out over the phone which freaked me out pretty good. But when we got there it was all good. No one was there. But whatever happened it scared the sisters pretty good and left me shaking pretty good. But everything is alright!
There is lots of good people here who just have bad luck and have some really terrible things happen to them. Even faithful members and returned missionaries. I am not sure why such bad things happen to such good people. But I have seen the two different ways that people react to those situations. 1 Is you can let them destroy you and your faith which makes everything so much worse. Or the other is you let it bring you closer to your Heavenly Father.
One of the hardest things for me here is trying to relate or help people that have just been dealt a hard hand and have had some terrible trials. I have not experienced anything like them and they know it! I have had such an easy life comparatively. I have been so blessed with my family. But what I have learned to do it just to ask them what is their ultimate goal. And most of them is they just want a strong family. That's usually the answer. Because most of them have been hurt so much by family problems. Then sharing my testimony that he Gospel of Jesus Christ is all about strengthening families and that Heavenly Father has given us so much to help our families and that helps them focus on their ultimate goal and make it through their hard time.
I have said it before and I will say it again. I love being a missionary and love what it is doing to me! I love you all and expect some results from this years deer hunt! Shoot straight!
Love love love,

Elder Jackson Erik Craythorne

Guess how many people are on that tricycle!!!
Correct me if I am wrong but I don't know if you can find skies this blue in Utah!:)

August 11th 2015

Hello everyone! I actually got back from a place called Manoling. It would be interesting to look up on a map! I have talked about it before I think but its a place so so so far into the mountains where there in a chapel. In a place you would never think there would be members but there is a strong ward! We went to some sweet waterfalls and did some cool hikes. I will send some pictures.

This week President visited our apartment and told Elder Dacutan and I to go to three different towns in Roxas and find apartments to open the area up. President is wanting to do a massive expansion. A lot of our week last week and a lot of our week this week is doing that. But we were able to have some powerful lessons even though we had so little time. We invited the first counselor to come with us to all of our lessons to relate to all of the dads of other families we are teaching. It made a big difference . The youth help a lot here but sometimes its a little challenging to get older people to come to lessons with you! But it was nice!

This week I learned a lot about having a vision of what you want to see done and do it. I think that is what I have really tried to do on my mission. Before my mission I would always say that there are only two things that you can control. Your effort and attitude! When you get out of your apartment you decide what kind of day you have. If you go out thinking that your going to have a good day and find someone who is ready for you and that your investigators will start keeping their commitments good things happen. There is so much power in a good attitude. The work is affected with a good attitude and enthusiasm! 

It's sometimes easy to get disappointed when families who promise to come to church and commit very hard never show up. I don't think I have ever been more excited for a sacrament meeting in my whole mission. We had some awesome families who committed and promised they would come to church. So Elder Dacutan and I were so excited to go to church last Sunday. We were jumping around all Sunday morning getting ready because we knew it was going to be a great day! But come time for church the Llaver andSerafin family did not show up.....So we were a little bit bummed but you know what I would have probably let that affect me a bit. After church we talked about it and said that we wouldn't let that affect our day and that we were still going to act like they came to church. So we went out to work happy like we were that morning and we were able meet some more great people. It's the same way in school and sports. I would find myself worrying about things out of my control and letting that affect me. But if we just focus on the things in our control and do them with full EFFORT. Then face the things out of our control with a good ATTITUDE. Then we will feel happy with our self and enjoy what is right in front of us. 

That picture of me doing my laundry can not explain how I feel about it. Its a love hate kinda thing. I like the experience. Like who else gets to do this? I feel like I am going back into time. I gain so much more respect for the moms here who spend crazy hours doing laundry for their families each week. My companion wakes up an hour early about ever three days to do his laundry Its crazy! I just save it all up for 1 week!

Everybody have fun on the deer hunt! I am expecting some results this year and some good hunting stories next week! I love love love my family. I love love love the Gospel and the guidance that it has given to me and the opportunity I have to be a servant of the Lord! There is nothing else like it!

I love you!!!


Elder Jackson Erik Craythorne


Interesting cultural side note! Kids here catch spiders and then put them on a stick to fight until one spider kills the other! Interesting to watch.

Monday, August 3, 2015

August 3, 2015

Woke up this morning to find this email from Jackson.  He did manage to send Jil and I a short email with one  picture so I will take a little bit out of each of ours to make up this weeks email.  


Well as I was typing the group letter the power went out and it just came on. And we have an appointment right now so we are heading out. Sorry there is no group email... But my week was so beautiful! I am in the best place in the world!!!! I love you all so much! 

A little bit from his email to me.........

You are exactly right there is no where else I would rather be than the Philippines the work is fulfilling and there are so many opportunities to do good and learn. I seriously have learned so much from the people here again. I am so interested in them and their way of life. I think I realized the scale of how poor people are here. If you flipped burgers at McDonald's you would be making the same as lawyers here! So crazy. I don't know how much you could afford on your mission but we can't afford cereal and milk and that's a humbling thought!! Of course I have money in my account which I use sparingly because I really want to try and live as much like they do for the time that I have here. Its pretty sweet spending 1-2 dollars per meal! Its a fun challenge! Alright well I better move on to Mom's email. FYI I am going to Iloilo.....again this week. Thank you for everything!!!!

To him mom.......

I got your package two days ago! I am so excited to make those cookies tonight! I am willing to bet no missionary in this whole mission gets more packages and letters from home than your son. You guys spoil me!!! I am not complaining either! I love it! Especially all the letters. there is not a week that either you or Melanie don't send me a letter. Its helps so much!   

I am in the best mission in the world. The Philippines is exactly what I need. I first thought that the people needed me more than I needed them but I was so wrong the longer I have spent here the more I realized that this place is exactly what I need! I love you mom so so much.

Then he sent his mom this with the picture attached.....

I would be lying if I said this wasn't a pain. Not too many missions have to
do this....:)