Monday, April 27, 2015

New Area!


What a busy week! So I have been transferred from Tarlac! Its always sad saying goodbye to the people you meet in each ward! definitely I hate goodbyes! But I know that someday I will be able to see them all again! Well. I have been transferred to the Angeles Zone. I am in an area about 45 minutes outside of Angeles but its still a big city called Mabalacat. Pretty sweet. My new companion is Elder On. Pretty awesome. He is from Cavite and is a way cool guy. Happy literally all the time! He reminds of the kid from the movie Up. Not so much the looks but just the way he talks. It keeps me entertained!  

Well this new area is going to take some work! I guess things have been going pretty slow here for the past year or so. My letters might get a little boring for the nest while because we will be finding all day every day! But I am excited! We have 1 progressing Investigator named Dina. She is way cool. She told us that she really wants a firm testimony of the gospel before she gets baptized. But she won't pray by herself. We don't know why! But we will be working on that. And we don't have any other investigators . Pretty sweet. But big news! Oh man. Are you ready. Okay. So. There was a less active couple in our area that they reactivated last transfer and they are now ready to go to the temple! Which means the missionaries will be able to go with them. And I am a missionary.... which means I can go to the temple!!! I am so excited! We will be going to the Manila temple on May 16. I have really learned how blessed we are in Utah to have so many temples around us! I think its something that we all take for granted sometimes. I have a goal that when I am home I will attend the temple weekly. I am really excited for the temple in Thailand because now the members in India can go there instead of Hong Kong! Really exciting stuff! 

Well no word on the visa. I miss India. But its okay. I just need some Chicken curry. I am having withdrawals! With the stomach problems I am going back to Tarlac today to go to the hospital and get another blood test and a stool check. Not excited for that one. But hopefully they can find whatever it is. I have found that the more I try to relax, the better I feel. but who knows. Well yeah. Thats about it. I hope all is going well at home. I will probably learn Tagalog pretty quickly here because I am living with 3 Filipinos! Its all Tagalog. but they all know English so its okay. Love you all. Be safe. Don't do drugs. 

Elder Checketts

Sunday, April 19, 2015


Hello Everyone!

So this week was awesome! We had a baptism! Andrew had finally made it. He is awesome. I was actually kinda shocked when he asked me to do it. We don't really speak the same language but he understands a little bit of English so its fine! but yeah it was an awesome experience and I am grateful I had it! So that was definitely the highlight of the week! But we also had another investigator at church and like 5 less active members! It was so awesome! Awesome way to end the week. We also found 4 or 5 new investigators and I think almost all of them accepted a baptism date. I feel like I should tell you this is mostly due to the efforts of my companion as I am handicapped when it comes to speaking the language. I just kinda sit there in the lesson, smile, maybe nod and act like I know whats going on, and then bare testimony at the end. Its pretty sweet. Anyway. It was a good week. Nice way to end the Transfer. 

With transfers I have no idea whats going on. Definitely I am staying another transfer here in the Philippines but we are pretty sure that we will both be transferred because this area is only temporary. This Wednesday is when we will find out whats happening. No word on the visa... Yeah. Um with the package I have no idea. Its probably somewhere in Africa. 

My stomach is still being a jew but I have gotten used to it. It doesn't bother me much anymore. So I am sorry if this offends anyone... But Filipino food is just not my jam. Compared to eating beautiful chicken curry everyday to plain rice with a little bit of soy sauce and a fried fish on the side just doesn't do it for me. Also there isn't much spicy food here. Its fine. They also have real beef here so I can't complain. Also Seven Eleven. I don't know how or why but those things are every where and it is so awesome!! 

Anyway. Did i miss anything? The Church is true. No matter how far away you think you are you can still always come back. Seriously I love studying the Atonement. Its power goes far beyond cleaning us from sin. I really do stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me! Well I love you all. Take care of yourselves. I will probably email from a different area next week. Maybe. Love yaa

Elder Checketts 

Monday, April 13, 2015


Hello my beloved family, friends, and acquaintances

What a wonderful week! So awesome. Where do I begin. Well Andrew (one of our few progressing investigators) passed his baptism interview and is now on his way to being that much closer to being able to enter the kingdom of God. So pumped. The event should be taking place this Saturday. Please pray that it works out! I am really excited for it! We had some awesome lessons this week. First was this brother named Raffy we taught when we first got here but he didnt seem too interested. about a month ago he asked for the testaments dvd and so we gave it to him. Also his wife is a less active member. Anyway. I guess he watched it like 2 or 3 times and we weren't ever able to meet with him again until this last week. He asked us a bunch of questions about the Book of Mormon. and He said he wanted to know more about what Christ did while he visited the people in America. Then he asked about Joseph Smith and about his life. We talked to him about how he was just a 14 year old farm boy who wanted the truth. He was pretty amazed with everything. The lesson was all over the place but the spirit was definitely there. It was way awesome. He really wants to read and continue to learn about the Book of Mormon. Such an awesome experience though. Also we taught a sister named Rika. We weren't too sure about her at first because she was wearing a hat that had "marijuana" written on it and she was a little crazy. but she invited us to her house. so we went. and we taught. and we felt the spirit. It was interesting to watch her understand. She seemed a little changed by it. We will be returning this Tuesday. Pumped. Anyway. Solid week. And this week should be another awesome one.

Conference, man. No words. My mind was blown spiritually. and metaphorically. Whatever that means. Seriously though so good. Although. I am not going to lie. After hearing the Saturday morning session and I was pretty convinced that I needed to get married Immediately. Just kidding. That phase of my life can wait. Well I will just tell a few of my favorite talks. Saturday morning session. Dallin H Oaks takes the cake. Such a great talk. I love that parable and now I understand it so much better. Also I love that he said that the root of all evil is not money... but the love of money. Doctrine. Anyway. Saturday afternoon session I cant able to decide which was my favorite. Between Elder Bednar, Elder Anderson, and Elder Renlund. Of course Bednar's talk blew my mind, but I love the story of the Indian that Elder Anderson spoke about saying "I can teach you to dance, but I can't teach you to hear the music." way cool. Priesthood session I think Elder Ballard wins. Actually one of my favorite talks of conference! The advice he gave for preparing, current, and returned missionaries was awesome. Sunday morning I can't able to decide between Elder Holland and President Uchtdorf. Really awesome talks. Sunday afternoon was great as well. Elder Pearsons talk about enduring to the end was probably my favorite. But Elder Nelson did a really good job of explaining the Sabbath day! Conference is a beautiful thing. I prayed for more understanding of the plan of salvation and I definitely got multiple answers! 

I am so grateful for Prophets and Apostles that lead and guide the Church today through revelation. For any that did not hear or listen I invite you to do so now! And not just once. Every day! every day! every day! 
The Bishop took us to Dinner!

No word on the visa. Transfers are next week. I will probably go somewhere else but then again, ya never know. Well I love and pray for you all. Thanks to all those who are supporting me and the rest of my fellow missionaries. Love yaaaa

Elder Checketts

Monday, April 6, 2015

Super Typhoon/Apostasy Week


This week was okay. We taught Andrew like everyday because he is moving out of the City but he will still come back for church every weekend so he can still be baptized on the 18th! He is a way awesome guy. He and his I think 4 year old son are great. So yeah. We are teaching the family whose son we helped with the whole accident and going to the hospital thing. The father has a BGD set for May 2nd but we will see how that goes. Hopefully they can make it to the church. On Sunday we had like 5 Inactive families there! So awesome! pretty sure it was only because of Easter! Still awesome! Also 2 Investigators came! Solid.
So I need to explain the hard core apostasy that took place this week here in Tarlac. I guess only this area has a tradition called Holy Week. And on the full moon tons of people come out to the streets and watch men Cut their backs open and literally whip themselves while walking up and down the streets in symbolism of Christs Atonement. There is usually some guy dressed in all black at the front of the line with Weeds on his head like the "crown" while carrying a giant cross. I guess it resembles repentance for all the bad things they have done? And then that night they all get drunk and party. Sooooo. Its gross. I added pictures. You dont have to look at them if you dont want. Its nasty. Blood flies all over the place and its all over the cars and sidewalks. I am just grateful That I am not in the place where they crucify themselves. But I guess its near to where we are.  It was filthy. Anyway. I am eternally grateful that Christ went through those things so that we don't have to. The love of God at its finest.

Well. As you all may have heard there was a Giant super typhoon  that came to the Philippines this last weekend! It was sooo crazy! Winds picked up to an amazing 10mph! And it literally did not drop a single drop of rain! It was cloudy all day though so that was intense. Yeahhh. I was so excited. And then nothing. Its okay. If I am stuck here for the rest of my mission then I don't need to worry about not seeing another one.(please pray that that does not happen) it was wild. But I am alive.
In other news I went to the hospital and had an ultra sound done. Turns out I am pregnant. Its a boy! Really though it was so awkward. All the nurses in there were just laughing and kept telling me congratulations. It was a horrible experience. Also had a blood test done. And the results of both tests were quite interesting. Turns out I have absolutely nothing wrong with me. Besides the stupidity but then again they didn't test that. Next time. Anyway The doctor that I went and saw gave me some pills. Probably cocaine. I seriously have no idea what it was but my stomach feels so much better. Yesterday was the first day in the last 2 months that my stomach didn't hurt way bad. Miracles. And that's about it....
Well I hope all is going well at home. Dad I am all for More Cowbell Marketing. I would invest in that. I pray for you all everyday. Read your scriptures. Pray. Have FHE. I am sorry I was a terrible child and didn't want to participate in that beautiful event. I am stoked to have family night with you all when I get home. Love you all!

simulating Christ's suffering by cutting and flogging
Elder Checketts

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Typhoon Update from Mission

Families of Philippines Angeles Missionaries:

The typhoon that wasn't.  Today is Preparation Day in the Angeles Mission and we rejoice at the safety and well-being of our missionaries and members.  Tropical typhoon MAYSAK (CHEDENG) made its way to and through the Philippines over the weekend.  The storm was closely monitored by the Philippines Area Office with regular bulletins to Mission Presidents over the past week.  The storm was once a super typhoon over the Pacific but as it approached Luzon it drastically dissipated and finally sputtered across the islands.  Early forecasts called for a direct hit in the Angeles Mission. In the end,  Chedeng landed a glancing blow to a very small portion of the mission.  Ironically, we didn't even get badly needed rain for the farmers in our area.

We believe that divine intervention protected the missionaries of our mission and the good people of Central Luzon.  Thank you for your faith and prayers in our behalf.  Great vigilance paid off and we were ready for what was thought to be a severe storm.  We were safe and we are not sorry for the precautions that we took.   We followed the counsel and example of our Area Presidency and count ourselves blessed for obedience.  The storm has passed; all missionaries are accounted for.

We are gladly back to work.

President Scott Clark