Hello from Elder Thurber--who serves in the Philippines Manila Mission

Hello from Elder Thurber--who serves in the Philippines Manila Mission

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

OYM, GMA7, Savory Chicken, and so forth

Matthew's Mom's note:  Some of the pictures in this post are from Matthew's Mission President's family mission blog  thephilippinesmanilamission.blogspot.com

Sun 12/14/2014

Dear Friends and Family,
Do you remember the feeling when you once opened up a soda bottle and started overflowing over everything everywhere, so you desperately try to scramble around to stop it? That's been this week for me.
I'm a zone leader now, so I talked in zone meeting for 20 minutes on OYMing (Opening Your Mouth). It means talking to somebody somewhere about the gospel, and inviting them to act on your message. As a zone, our standard is to get 70 OYMs every week per companionship. For most missionaries, it's super hard to do; it's so scary! In fact the previous week we got only 330 OYMs as a whole zone, compared to 980 which we should've gotten. I was so happy we now have over 550! We're on our way as a zone.
So you're already aware of the 20 missionaries and I who performed on GMA7 last Thursday. It was a memorable experience! We practiced and practiced on Wednesday night at the mission home until 11 o'clock, learning new songs because GMA7 changed around what they wanted--short parts of songs to and from commercial breaks in the span of two hours. Sister Ostler was a little shell shocked with the assignment, but we all pulled through and witnessed a miracle of learning "Carol of the Bells" by memory on Wednesday night. And during Thursday morning, we sang "Pasko Na Naman," a festive Filipino Christmas song.

Here's a recording of "Pasko Na Naman:"
The performance group slept for just three hours, got ready to go, and was shipped off to GMA7 to put on a little make-up before performing first at 5 AM. 

The sun wasn't even out yet and we were already performing! The lady in charge said we shouldn't sing "Oh Come, All ye Faithful" because it wasn't upbeat enough, so we practiced the other songs more and perfected them. I honestly thought we would be singing more, but we caught the attention of all the people in the bldg, and the performance is spread on Facebook. Look it up on "Mormon Pinoy Newsroom."  It's good stuff!

After the performance, we were given some food, including two enormous cakes, which were, unfortunately.... mocha. And... I can't find my camera with all the pictures of the performance. Oooppss...
My MTC teacher Brother Ronquilla, and me
I got to attend the temple on Saturday! Elder Amante and Sims (the elder I replaced) didn't go on the scheduled temple day so we could attend the endowment and sealing of a couple in our ward. Coincidentally, it was Boni 3rd Ward's temple day, and so I got to see all of my old ward yet again, as well as my old MTC teacher Bro Ronquilla (see picture) and some temple workers in my second area. 

We rode home with the family, and we ate at a super expensive restaurant.  We then went straight to Sister Angel and Althea's interview. Melody Toledo, who takes care of them, brought along a friend, Christopher, who we taught during the interview, who could be baptized in January! He'll be attending Angel and Althea's baptism.

That's just a small portion of my week.  It'll be even more exciting, I'm sure, as Christmas comes, because of the choir opportunities, meetings, parties, and transfers.

Stay alive!

Elder Thurber

Matthew's Mom's Note:

You may also be interested in Sister Ostler's account and pictures of the GMA7 performance.  


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