Monday, June 27, 2016


Its been a crazy week! We've been really busy and I've been stretched quite a bit which is good. Like Sister Rahlf taught us, "there's no growth in the comfort zone, and no comfort in the growth zone." I am thankful for these challenges. Had to say goodbye to some great friends who finished their missions, including my trainer, Elder Saguire! But then got to welcome a batch of great new missionaries who are excited for the work!
This is now President and Sister Rahlf's last week in the mission. They've served amazingly these past three years and have been more than inspiring! I've learned so much from them and being able to serve alongside them has been a great privilege! Of all the lessons I've learned from President and Sister Rahlf, I think one of the most prominent will be Christlike love. They've demonstrated Christlike love in so many ways and are true servants of the Lord! I'll never forget them for sure!
This Thursday we'll be meeting our new mission president, President Hiatt and the work will just continue going on! Its great!
Our baptism last Saturday also went great! Brother John Paul and Sister Eva were both just counting down the days before they could be baptized and now its happened and they are both just super happy! It was a great service as well!
Another little twist in the week, we got into a car accident. Everyone is okay and things will be fine. But now I guess I can check that one off my lists of things I've experienced on my mission haha!
I know this work is true and I'm so thankful to be serving alongside such great leaders like President and Sister Rahlf... We'll miss them a TON but this is the will of the Lord. I've been studying a lot about humility this last week and the real great ones in the kingdom of God are not those who just obtain high callings or are known to the world, but rather its really those who just do good everyday. Richard G. Edgley said this,

 "These are the many members I see, admire, and am grateful for. They are not seeking position, prominence, or fame, but each is earning a place in our Father’s kingdom by taking care of the business of everyday living. They are consistently doing the unnoticed, the unspectacular, but humbly and righteously doing the important. Challenges they have, but out of their bitter struggles they are able to find the sweetness that is so often the silent companion to adversity. This picture is duplicated hundreds of times in thousands of wards throughout the world. They are The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints."
Love you have a great week!
Elder Navarro

Monday, June 20, 2016

Special Training

I'll keep this one shorter. We've had a pretty busy week! But one of the highlights of the week was definitely the training President and Sister Rahlf gave this last week to all the missionaries. This was really their last time to see all the missionaries again before they go home. Their topic was perfect as a last topic. It was about the Atonement of Jesus Christ and how it really is an "infinite atonement" It was an awesome training. After the training, they cut all our ties/clothes to add to their mission quilt they will be making with all the ties/clothes of all the missionaries who have served during their time as Mission President and Wife. I had a tie cut that was given to our Priest's Quorum way back when I was still 16! It was the tie I wore on my first day here in the Cauayan mission so I thought it would be fitting to include in the Cauayan Mission Quilt! 

The Ruiz family is doing really really well! Brother Michael even left work without permission to be able to at least make it to a little bit of church yesterday. We changed Sister Jessa's baptismal date to July 16 so they'll be able to be baptized together as a family! We're sooooooooo excited for them and we're really starting to see changes in Brother Michael. Greg and Cristina Dela Cruz are also doing awesome! They came with us last Sunday to work and visit some other couples we were teaching. Its so effective to have a recent convert couple with you to teach. Brother John Paul and Sister Eva Pascua are also preparing for baptism this week! Sister Eva also is looking forward to the day when she can take her deceased husband's name to the temple! 

But other than that, its been a great week! We've been having several meetings in preparation for the upcoming transfer. Also got to go on some exchanges with Elder Haacke from Pocatello, ID and Elder Treyes (one of my former companions) Its been a great week.

Heres just 2 quotes that President shared with us from his training, 

“One does not speak lightly of the Atonement or casually express appreciation.  It is the most sacred and sublime event in eternity.  It deserves our most intense thoughts, our most profound feelings, and our noblest deeds.  One speaks of it in reverential tones; one contemplates it in awe; one learns of it in solemnity, now and throughout eternity.”     - Elder Tad R. Callister

“…the Atonement of the Only Begotten Son of God in the flesh is the crucial foundation upon which all Christian doctrine rests and the greatest expression of divine love this world has ever been given.  Its importance in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints cannot be overstated.  Every other principle, commandment, and virtue of the restored gospel draws its significance from this pivotal event.”     - Jeffery R. Holland

Have a great week!

Elder Navarro

Monday, June 13, 2016

Fathers Day

Dear Friends and Family,

First of all, HAPPY INDEPENDANCE DAY in the Philippines and HAPPY FATHERS DAY as well! I'm proud to be an American/Filipino! And grateful for a great Tatay (Dad)!

This area has been so blessed! Its the most progressing area I've been in my whole mission! There are 8 people preparing to be baptized in the next month and a half! And they're very progressing. We've literally seen miracles as this work has been going. One of them was Greg Dela Cruz! His baptism was this last Saturday. Funny thing was we had a brown out in all of Cauayan from 9:00am until 3:30am the next day! So at the baptism we were sweating bullets! President and Sister Rahlf, and Elder and Sister Jones attended and I felt so bad for them! We as missionaries are used to sweating a ton and getting really hot, but they aren't as much, so they were dripping sweat as well! Brother Greg used to be a hard time drinker and just super super irresponsible and what not, but now he's COMPLETELY changed! Its amazing! It was a great baptismal service and I definitely felt the Holy Ghost confirm that what was happening was right. I kept thinking at the baptism, "Gosh...I can't believe he is being baptized!"  If you knew what he was like just a few months ago, you would understand! It truly was a "mighty change of heart". But the great thing is now their whole family are member of the church! And they now have a goal of going to the temple.

Another miracle is Brother Michael, Jessa's husband. He came to church this last Sunday! He was one of Brother Greg's former friends and he came to church with his wife and son! It was great! Last night we had a Family Home Evening with them, the Dela Cruz family, and the Solofrania family. 1 investigator family, 1 recent convert family, and 1 very recent convert family! That was a ton of fun!

This week, got to go on exchanges with the Cauayan Zone Leaders and I got to be with Elder Pandaog again! We had a great day and laughed a ton talking about our area in Cauayan and the experiences we had when we were companions.

Also got to see all the new missionaries and their trainers this last Wednesday! Had interviews with President and Sister Rahlf. I'm going to miss them a ton!

Also did a community service project at a school painting and cleaning things up!

Its a great life! :) This is the true church of Christ! I know that because of the Book of Mormon. I've seen it change so many lives, including my own.

Have a great week!

Elder Navarro

Monday, June 6, 2016

Independence in the Philippines!

Apparently its independence weekend in the Philippines... I think.

The work has just been rollin'!!! We've had a ton of member support! In fact, most of our progressing investigators are referrals from members! But miracles are just pouring out in this area! I think I mentioned to you last week about Greg Dela Cruz. Quick recap: Greg's wife, Christine, was baptized last January. At first he wanted nothing to do with the missionaries or the church and he drank... a lot. After a few months, he started to have a change of heart. Long story short, he's getting baptized this Saturday! That was a miracle in itself! After his interview yesterday, he came with us to one of our progressing investigators, Sister Jessa. Quick recap of Jessa: SUPER SUPER SUPER SPIRITUALLY SENSITIVE! VERY VERY VERY SMART! Holy cow! She understands the Book of Mormon probably better than I do and she is the definition of the word "ponder." We've been trying really hard to get her husband to listen as well, with little success. Then we found out, out of what I believe to be divine planning, that Brother Greg and Brother Michael (Jessa's husband) were in the same fraternity group in college and used to be REALLY close and hard partiers and drinkers! They're brothers in the frat group. So Brother Greg came with us yesterday after his interview to teach Michael and Jessa Ruiz. We taught about the Book of Mormon and it was a POWERFUL lesson! Brother Greg bore his testimony of the Book of Mormon and said "Bro! This Book literally saved my life. Its helped me change my life. My vices have brought me nothing but trouble, but this has saved my life! You can change too! I can't describe the help that has come from reading this Book every day. Let this book become your new vice." Thats not exactly what he said but it was something to that effect. It was great! I actually fasted for this family and I just realized last night that that was a direct answer to my fast. 

Another great thing, Brother Greg, Michael, and two of our other investigators, Ray and Pablo, were all in the same frat group in college. They are all preparing for baptism!!! Another miracle about that is we found them all separately! It would seen like just a 1 in a million coincidence, but I dont think its that way. 

Had another powerful lesson on Saturday night with Brother Michael and Sister Jessa, where we watched the Restoration DVD with them. Sister Jessa cried with how powerful it was and what she was feeling! She explained that it just made sense that God would restore His church on the earth. It was a great thing for Brother Michael. He promised to read the Book of Mormon and come to church next Sunday. They have a 4 year old son who I can see will be a missionary one day! Brother Greg and Sister Christine also have a 6 year old son who I can already see as a missionary! The work is booming right now!!!!!!

I wish you could see and experience the things that I'm seeing and experiencing! I feel like these short stories are way too little and dont give the things that are happening justice! Needless to say, I feel like I'm on cloud 9!

Have a great week and take care!

Elder Navarro (Brandon)