Called to Serve in the Philippines Quezon City Mission
Speaking the Tagalog language
January 2013 to July 2014

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Tuesday January 29th

Hello my beautiful family!

First off I just have to say thank you for all the dear elder letters I am definitely feeling loved! All the elders in my district always make fun of me and Sister Wilson because we always get a lot of letters haha. It’s so nice to hear from all my family and friends and get updates on how life is going for everyone. Hopefully you guys got my letter by now I think I sent it on Thursday but it was a 6 page letter haha Sister Wilson was sick for 2 days so we had to stay in most of the day so I had a lot of time to write, so I decided to write you a letter with all the details that I didn't have time to write in my last email, so enjoy cause you probably won't get another letter like that for a while. It's hard to find time to write cause we always have a lot to do. Also Andelyn and Amelia you should be getting letters any minute as well I sent them Saturday, I miss you two weirdo’s A LOT. Mom I'm glad that you found my companions blog and yes her pictures are better than mine cause her camera is super nice sooo yah I’ve tried playing with mine but I don't mind as long as it's working and taking pictures I'm good. I asked the elders and only one said that he had a blog too.

 We have the same schedule as last week same food etc... I got to see Ryan Tuckett a few more times before he left. I think he left yesterday? Sister Wilson and I got some new roommates they are headed for New Jersey English speaking and it's kinda funny cause they both have one parent who served in the Philippines. One of them has a mom who served there, and the other her dad served there. Small world!

So we had an "investigator" Jed, who we started teaching our second day at the mtc and we taught him four other times. Yesterday he came in to say hello and turns out he was one of the teachers here haha Sister Wilson and I kinda knew that already but we tried not to tell anyone. He was a really good actor! and it was fun teaching him. We start teaching two new investigators today and they are actually two of our teachers that we see every day so it’s kind of weird but fun. The language is slowly coming. I feel like I've plateaued a bit though. I was learning and picking up stuff really fast in the beginning but now we are getting into the harder stuff and.. It’s tough. I try not to get discouraged though cause I have only been here two weeks and I know a lot for just that short of time. One of our teachers told us yesterday that If you put in the work and give it 100% everyday than the lord will bless us and we will receive the gift of tongues, but only if Heavenly Father knows we are trying our best. We can't just sit here and expect to learn the language without trying. So True! Totoo! So Sister Wilson and I are constantly setting more goals to really buckle down on the language. We make flashcards every day and add them to a big pile and we try to go through them every night which has been helping.

It started warming up in the beginning of the week, all the snow was melting, the grass was showing and you could actually see the trees and bushes haha then, Sunday it started snowing again and it hasn't stopped snowing since. We walked to the temple this morning at 7am and when we got to the doors we all had piles of snow on our heads and shoulders. I'm keeping warm though don't worry mom! It would help if you could send me my rain boots when they come in though :) please!! They would be super helpful in this snow which there is tons of.

Every Sunday and Tuesday we have devotionals with a guest speaker and I love theemmmm. It's usually always a general authority or something but in relief society we had the general relief society president come talk and that was awesome. I'm looking forward to who will be speaking at tonight’s devotional. Also on Sundays they have videos available to watch after the devotional and they have a variety like old talks that apostles have given here at the MTC, the Joseph Smith movie Etc.. Stuff like that. They always have an Elder Holland talk playing and he is Sister Wilsons and I's favorite speaker so we always go to those ones. The one we went to on Sunday was so wonderful! It was a talk that he had given just this past Thanksgiving Day here at the MTC that they had recorded. I'd like to share some things that he said with you: He talked a lot about the old prophets, in the bible and the book of Mormon. All about the hardships that they had faced and the trials they had to endure. All while knowing that they wouldn't win. Those prophets knew that their time would end in apostasy. But God had shown them what would happen in the future, he showed them our day and although they knew that they would not win, they knew that we would. In Mormon chapter 8, Mormon says "I have seen your day, and I know your doing". Elder Holland said he can imagine that they saw our generation, and that maybe they saw a glimpse of a room at the MTC filled with missionaries getting ready to preach to the world. They knew we would make it, and so they persevered through all the things that the people did to them. Elder Holland mentioned how Alma and Amulek watched as innocent women and children were thrown into the pit of fire, and yet they still did not deny their faith. Peter was crucified upside down, all these horrible things but they did not stop spreading the word of god because they knew that someday, we would win.

 This week I have truly felt blessed to be a missionary in this dispensation. I don't know why Heavenly Father saved me for this time, but I know it was for a purpose. It makes me want to be the best missionary I can be, because I want all that those missionaries, apostles, and prophets that went through all they did to be worth it.

I love you all so much and I do miss you, but I know I need to be here. Be safe my little family, listen to the spirit and I hope you can feel my prayers for you all. I do pray for you every night that you will be watched over and guided. I love you! Ingat!

Love Always, Sister Jones


*Excerpts from Ammah’s 6 page letter


*There were 800 other missionaries that came to the MTC the same week that I arrived. The average before the age change was 300.

My district has 10 elders = 5 companionships and Sister Wilson and I. We are all headed to the Philippines with Sister Wilson and me going to the same mission. The boys are all going to different missions in the Philippines. There are 4 districts in our Zone. Our Zone attends church together but we eat, study, attend classes and the temple with our district. We have become like family and I love, love my district.

My schedule is the same everyday but Sunday and P-day (preparation day) Here is my weekly schedule.

6:30 am – Arise and prepare

7:00 am – Daily planning session

7:30 am – Additional study time

7:45 am – Breakfast

8:20 – 11:20 – Classroom Instruction (language)

11:25 – 12:24 pm Personal Study time (doctrine)

12:25 – Lunch

1:20 – 2:10 – Gym

2:10-2:40 – Showers, dressing

2:40 – 3:55 – Language study with companion

3:55 – 4:55 – Computer Language Study

4:55 – 5:35 - Language and Doctrine Studies

5:25 – Dinner

6:10 – 6:30 – Additional Study Time

6:30 – 9:30 – Classroom Instruction (Language and Investigators)

9:30 – 10:15 – Personal Time and companion prayer

10:30 – Lights out.

(Ammah is so excited about getting 8 glorious hours of sleep each night!)

I have seen Marian Hatch, Kristi Farnsworth and Kailey Foxcroft all girls from my singles ward several times.

Thanks for the cookies Mom. I didn’t really share them and good thing because while Sis Wilson has been sick I haven’t been to the cafeteria for breakfast or lunch for two days.



Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Kumasta Pamilya!

Well today is my 7th day at the MTC, and I really love it here! It's so nice to be surrounded by other missionaries all the time all focused on learning to teach people about the restored gospel. It's so beautiful here especially with all the snow, which there is  A LOT of! It's cold but I’m trying to enjoy it because in 5 weeks I'll be on my way to the humid and hot city of Quezon. I'm trying to think about the very beginning of the week haha but its hard cause all the days seem to blend together since my schedule is pretty much the same every day. Wake-up, study, eat, study, eat, study, eat, study and sleep.. and repeat haha seriously! Any who! My companions name is Sister Wilson; she is from San Jose California. She is 19 years old; she responded to the age change immediately and put her papers in, which is something I greatly admire about her. She is also going to Quezon City! She's the sweetest person ever we get along so well! I can't imagine being paired with anyone else we agree on everything and always have the same ideas when it comes to setting goals and etc.. We are having so much fun here together. We are the only sister companionship in our district there are 9 other elders with us in our district. They have become like another family, we are with them pretty much all day every day but I don't mind because they are so fun to be around and just overall really great guys who are going to be really awesome missionaries. Sadly they aren't going to our same mission so it will be sad to say goodbye to them at the end of my MTC experience.

The language is CRA-ZY ha! I'm surprised at how fast we have been learning though. By the second day we could already say simple prayers and bare simple testimonies. Now we can say both pretty quickly and Sister Wilson and I always pray in Tagalog now and remember to use the new vocab we learn as much as we can. We can also now invite people to commit to pray, read the book of Mormon etc.. And we can also count to 1000. We have been teaching an investigator named Jed since day 2. We teach him a lesson pretty much every other day, we just taught him a third lesson yesterday. It has to be all in Tagalog, which is hard since we don't know a whole lot yet but we know enough to get by but it's more of a taga-lish thing (tagalog/english) ha!

We got to go do a session this morning at the temple which was so nice! I've missed the temple and the Provo temple is so beautiful inside, i love it. I'll definitely be looking forward to that every Tuesday. By the way Tuesdays are my p-days for the next 5 weeks just so you guys know. It's really the only time I have to write letters cause they keep us soo busy and on such a tight schedule every day, so I’m sorry that I couldn't write you a letter sooner I really don't have enough time! Hopefully you got my letter yesterday though.

I wish i could tell you more details I just don't have the time, but yes the food is great, the people are awesome and I got all your dear elders and stuff. Dear elder is the best! Tell everyone about it who wants to write me, it also works for my mission too. Also thanks for my package Mom I got it this morning.

I only have 30 minutes to write so I'm gonna need to wrap this up but just know that I’m safe and I'm absolutely loving it here. Every day I’m here, I am reassured that this is where I need to be. I love being a missionary! Sunday we got to go out and walk around the temple and as we were crossing the street someone drove by honking and waving at us. Sister Wilson and I looked at each other like 'what the heck?' haha but then were all 'oh yah!! We're missionaries!!' haha sounds silly but it was the first time I really stopped and was like 'wo, I’m a missionary!'

I miss you guys but I try not to think about home cause I know I'll get home sick. I know Heavenly Father has been helping me keep my mind on the work and the language, rather than thinking about all my friends and loved ones back home. As soon as I got on the plane to Salt Lake I just felt so peaceful and reassured that everything was going to be okay. I love this gospel and I'm so grateful for the opportunity to serve. I know I can do this because I have a great support system back home and so many who love and care for me, and I know most of all that I have a loving Heavenly Father who is going to be there every step of the way, watching over me and guiding me to his lost children who need to hear this message.

I love you all sooo so much! Ingat! (take care) and be safe!

Love Always, Sister Jones
Ammah's companion Sister Wilson and Ammah pointing to the Philippines on the Map
                                                     In front of the Provo Temple
                                           In front of the Provo Temple with her District
                                        Sister Wilson and Sister Ammah Jones in the MTC

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Ammah has arrived!

Ammah is now in the MTC. We dropped her off at the airport Wednesday, Jan 16th. She was so excited, and a little nervous. Just thought I would let everyone know that on the website you can type a letter and they will print it out and put it in her mailbox there at the MTC. Just address it to Sister Ammah Jones mailbox #158. I'm sure she would love to hear from everyone.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Ammah enters the Missionary Training Center on January 16th. Check back here for letters and pictures. Ammah would like to thank everyone for their love and support.