Posted by: Susan Johnson | April 1, 2009

My first full week was full of “crazies”!

Hey Akong Pamilyia–


   I survived my first full week in the Philippines! Crazy huh and boy was it crazy! Full of crazy food, crazy people, crazy language, crazy huts, crazy animals, and crazy bugs! Haha it’s been awesome though. You would not believe how these people live. Like I said before, most live in these little huts on stilts and sometimes have electricity if they are lucky. It’s like camping 24/7 — it’s so cool. I love their little balays. There are people that live in cement places too. Mom no worries, I haven’t had a problem yet with the food! Haha but they really do eat rice every meal. My companion, Sister Abrao does most of the cooking and she can come up with some interesting stuff but nothing too bad. There is a picture of one of the meals she made. I told her I was going to do the cooking this week. Haha full of bean and cheese burritos, peanut butter and jelly…both of which she has never had!!! Ano bien! My companion is awesome though. I love her. She is so humble and kind. We get along great even though at times there is a definite language barrier. It makes for some good laughs. 

   Man there is so much to tell I don’t know where to start! I hope you like the pictures. There is one of me doing my laundry by hand…then some of the beautiful scenery. It is gorgeous here…and yes I just used gorgeous. They call this place San Carlos the Hawaii of the Philippines…(Hey Wobbs you and me girl aren’t so far apart!)  Oh there is a picture of one of our littleMr. Spider towns that we go to that got flooded. This is one of the poorest parts. If you look closely there are some little kids playing in the. . .who knows what’s in that water! Oh and my companion and I trudged through that stuff bare foot to get to one of our investigators hut. It was definitely not sanitary, but it was an adventure. Oh my goodness mom you see that one picture with the spider!!!? Yea we came home to that one night! It was the most disgusting…ooo im getting freaked out just thinking about it! It was huge! Like the size of my face! Every night we come home to some kind of critter. Mostly cockroaches. It’s intense but I am getting used to it. I just hope I never have to see another one of those spiders! Let’s see there is another picture of a cemetery. As you can see they are not buried under the ground but just stacked on top of one another…I haven’t figured out why yet but it looks cool. 

img_05131   That’s basically it for the factual stuff now for the fun stuff…the INVESTIGATORS. There are so many! The work is so great here in San Carlos…it seems we find new people to teach every day. The people are so nice. I can’t really ever understand them when they talk but I just smile a lot and try to make them laugh which isn’t hard. It’s cool because even though we can’t understand each other, I feel a real connection with them. And I want so bad for them to have the gospel in their lives. Just to name a few — one of my favorite families is the Birang Birang family! They are so cool. There is this old grandpa that I think sits in the same position every day. His name is Soylo but he is the sweetest old man. He is blind so he can’t see me but he always says Americana Americana and laughs. His family says he never really smiles except for when I come over. It makes me feel so good that I can make his day even just for a little bit. Then there is Brother Rusty. He is younger then me and has 3 kids. He is one of the elect that the scriptures talk about. He just has to get married and he is ready for baptism. Then there is Sister Bevelyn and Sister Marlyn. They are really receptive to our message and they always keep our commitments. They even came to church for the first time yesterday!! (no mom no grass hut for a chapel. They actually have a really nice chapel. It’s probably the nicest thing in the city and I’m not kidding.) Although they had what was called a brown out which is basically a black out and the A.C. was out…it was hotter then none other. Then there are the Bilosis. They live right on the shore – actually their house is over the water. Brother Bilosis is a fisherman and so he has a bunch of nets out there. It’s so cool though and they are fun to visit. I pray for all our investigators!

   I’ll tell you what the hardest thing is. I can’t even tell you how bad I wish I could understand these people when they talk. I wish so I can know how to best help them. It is so hard because I will ask them questions then I can’t understand a word they say. It gets really discouraging at times because I feel a little useless. My speech is really simple. But I pray that even though my words are weak I pray that the spirit is there and can bear witness to them what I really want to say. No baptisms scheduled yet but hopefully some in the near future. I’m so grateful for the gospel in my life. I’m grateful for my Savior Jesus Christ. I’m grateful for a loving Father in Heaven who is so aware of me and supports me from hour to hour. I can feel Him helping me. And I know that He will be there for each one of you – all you have to do is seek Him out in prayer and believe that He will help you. I love you all more then you can know and pray for you every day! 

-Sister Johnson

(Wobbs did you die? I haven’t heard from you in forever! I miss you girl! I am dying to hear from you). (Hid you are awesome! I can echo every single word you wrote in your last email. For reals I felt the same way in the MTC! You are doing awesome! Keep up the good work!) OH and PS. Haha for p-day today we are going to go to this spot where there are some wild monkeys! I’m so excited! I will have to take some pics and send them next time! I might even see Riley there! 



  1. Hey where are the pictures???? I would love to see those. It sounds like Kelsey is doing great. I know she is a fabulous missionary.

  2. Is that better? You even got a new header for the blog!

  3. Wow, Sister Johnson, you’re having an amazing experience!

    In Panama, they stack the graves on top of each other like that for two reasons: first, the water table is so high, and second, because that way families can be buried together even if there’s no more room in the cemetery.

  4. How awesome! I know you will do a great job representing our Savior to these people. I too used to live in a hut house and on stilt. It was an adventure for sure.
    Ingat ka,

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