The children from the whole district sang "I Am A Child Of God" VIDEO
The Baco branch performed an impressive synchronized dance with the two elders in front showing their moves. VIDEO
The sisters came to our apartment to view Women's Conference. They were thrilled to see the books that were sent to us and asked if they could have some to send home. We were happy they loved them so much and were excited for them to share with their families.
We shared books with several elementary schools as well as the high school but better than that was the chance to take some to some families that would never be able to own them. This is the man who fixes the fans from the missionary apartments. He has a little girl so we made her a special packet of books. We were sad she wasn't home when we came but we know she will love them. We included a beautiful hard bound Disney book "The Little Mermaid" since her home is right on the water.
This lady is quite an artisan. She makes and repairs jewelry. One day we were driving by and saw her middle daughter playing school with her sisters. We could see how much the books meant to them. They kept saying the could hardly believe we would give them so many.
There are four little girls in this family. We're not sure what the father's business is but we did see a grinder tool in this little space. They were very surprised and happy. We are their best "foreign" friends right now.
This is their reaction as we drove away.
Beauty From the Walk
Sometimes when we are visiting the sisters these little pigs come for a visit. They come from the pig farm across the street and are so small they fit through the fence. The day will soon come they will get too fat to get through the gate.
Elder Bellessa is like the "Pied Piper" when we go to communities. We home teach a lady in a village quite far from the church so she can't afford to pay transportation. She speaks some English but when we really want a good visit we take the sisters with us to talk to her in Tagalog. We usually get plenty of attention but one particular day there were more and more children who gathered to look at Elder Bellessa and discuss him with lot of excitement. When we left we asked the sisters what they were talking about and they said they thought he was Santa Clause coming early.
Little did they know he really is!
The biggest source of economy is education. Each neighborhood has a school and the government subsidizes the families to make it possible for almost any child to attend. The families buy school supplies, the businesses near the schools thrive such as street food, internet cafes, clothing. The Mindoro High School has 6000 students. There are three shifts starting at 7:30 going to 7PM. When we drive by during the shift change we say it looks like someone kicked an ant hill because there are so many students on the street and in nearby shops. VIDEO
During a walk these men were encountered engaging in the favorite pastime of cock fighting. As we stopped to watch they grabbed the cocks and hid them. On a closer look they recognized us from a previous visit when we had taken photos then brought them copies. They went back and got the birds and gave us a chance to video how it is done. VIDEO
We look forward to getting hugs from our family when we get home.