Tuesday, December 24, 2013

More Christmas Pics!

Jackson emailed home one day before the BIG day (aka we get to skype on Christmas day with him)
Here are some pictures of his Christmas party with the ward, Christmas shopping and presents and his companion goofing around.  By the way...basketball jerseys are only $5.00 in the Philippines!!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Pics from the Philippines!

One Month Out!!

Here is Jackson's response to his dads letter...Pretty cool!
Hello father!!

How are you doing? How is St George? Any new info on the Dodgers?! Our area is really impoverished, lots of squatter areas! But its okay! I have come to really appreciate what i have back home, there are also a lot of stray dogs and stray cats too, like big ones little ones haha but people dont eat dog here really, it is illegal where i am so the dogs just chill and do nothing haha. Oh really?! I miss the secret pal thing!! I wish i could have done that, being gone during christmas is really sad and makes me home sick cause that is the time of the year that you are always with your family! But i know that i am needed here for some reason and just need to "forget my self and go to work" Even know it may be hard some times i just need to endure and do this for these people! Dad i love the people here, especially the children, they are so cute and love coming up and talking to me! It just so sad cause they have absolutely nothing and i just wish i could do something for all of them! But the other day we were at a members house who lived in these sqautter areas and kids kept coming in and kept calling me "pogi"(handsome) and then they would pet my arms and play with my hair haha! But the kids are always perfecting my tagalog! I had a cool experience this week, we were at a LA family and her son had been sick for a while and they dont really have money for medicine or a doctor so we were just talking and we asked if we could give him a blessing, the mother said yes and we proceeded to give him a blessing, i was the one who actually did the blessing and after i did it i was in wonderment because of what i did and what i hold, the holy Melchizedek priesthood that Jesus Christ himself had and gave to the first 12 apostles, its such an amazing gift that we have dad, and i couldn't imagine life with out having it, it is such an amazing blessing and i am so glad i had the opportunity to use it!! Thats cool! and really nice of them to be thinking of me so make sure to tell them all hello!! I love seeing the emails i get from you they are always filled with such inspiration!! I love you so much dad thanks for being so awesome!! love and miss ya!

Love Jack

Maligayang Pasko (MERRY CHRISTMAS)

Here is Jacksons letter to his Mom....

 I know it has gone by so fast already its crazy i have been gone for a month already!! I am really good! Me and Elder Guard are christmas shopping at the biggest mall in our mission!!! ITs so freaking nice and so huge!! We are so stoked!!! I know its only like 10 days away crazy!! Our week has been okay, our numbers were lower than last week cause we hardly ever have people working with us so its hard cause we teach a lot of girls! But we had a good week!! Well our apartment is just so american! It literally is a nice apartment for america! And its only me and Guard there so its just like our own little slice of america!! Well we can buy it but we dont cause its better to use the other methods! haha Yes he should be getting them soon!! So tell her not to worry!! THey did?! thats awesome cause i will be spending that today!! Whats my exact balance of money?? I havnt seen any nativities but i can keep looking, i will look today while we are shopping? How is everything down home? How is it with out me there for christmas? Its kinda hard being away from family during this time.. Did you watch the Christmas conference? It was amazing! I strongly advise you to watch it!! Let me know how you are haha! LOve and miss you guys!!

Monday, December 9, 2013

THIS IS JACKSONS EMAIL TO HIS DAD.... (No pics this week because he left his card reader at home)

Hello father!! I love reading your emails they bringm me such joy!! and i loved seeing the pictures from SLC, they were so awesome and i am so proud of syd for doing that!! No i am only elder guards 2nd US comp, and the other one was named something totally different but i will watch out for him while i am here!! This week has been a good one, we taught more lessons this week than any othe week so that was awesome!! We and elder gaurd are loving it so much! We have a way nice appartment that is just the two of us there so it is always super clean and super american haha!! Its alright, its just totally different from Cebuano, so its a little tough but i am hanging in there and doing and trying the best that i can!! And elder Guard always tells me to not get discouraged and it will come to me eventually, he is just so good at the language i hope i can be as good as he is one day!! So the area i am in is Acacia 2 and it covers areas such as, Catmon,Tinajeros,Petrero,and Acacia. Its pretty dirty and there are a lot of jeepneys and trycs going around so there is a lot of pollution, but we and elder Guard still enjoy it here! It hasnt rained in a while, but its good, it currently isnt rainy season right now so it doesnt rain to often but there are usually always clouds in the sky and i think its going to rain but its just teasing me haha! Yes he is an awesome comp, he is teaching me so so much here and we are becoming way good friends its so awesome and i am so blessed to have his as my comp!! NO!! never again will i eat that, but i finally had so adobo, which i would say is my favortie thing to eat here its delecious!! Any ways your emails make me so happy and make me miss home, i miss you dad i cannt wait to here from you agian!! Love you 


This is Jacksons email response to his mom....

Thats crazy!! Elder Guard showed me some pictures of the snow in st george!! thats crazy there was that much snow!!! Yeah and i am sort of getting used to the crazy heat here so thats good i wasnt there for the cold cause i hate the cold haha!! I just would like a bigger house if i have any imput on things haha with a pool!! I am so glad that he signed i was worried that he wasnt going to go through with it! But any ways one of the members here sharred a story with me about some one who was LA for 20yrs but every sunday the family asked if they wanted to go to church with them but the person just kept saying no... But then the person started to notice a change in the family as they went to church so one sunday they asked him and he said yes, they are all an active family now and are sealed for eternity and also he is now a Melkezedec preisthood holder, so we just need to keep inviting tyler every sunday and he will eventually come back!! Q1: We are teaching 8 investigators and 6 of them are brand new that we found this week, we have one I with a bap date which is a cool story in itself, So this investigator we have is a real sketchy guy and i am pretty sure he does crazy drugs anyways he is just a little sketchy guy, so Saturday we had 6 lessons planned and we went to everyone and nobody was home, and after each one i kept getting the feeling we should go to Joel(the sketchy guy) so we went to our last appt and they werent there so i was like elder Guard i think we should go teach Joel, and he said i sure hope you are being guieded by the spirit cause he his way freaky, so we went and taught him and it went good and we gave him a bap date!! He is planning on being baptized January 5, so i hope he follows through with it! Every sunday we have church at 9 but usually starts at 9:30(everyone here is on Filippeno time haha) but after church we have a meeting with the ward council to discuss how we are doing and what we need help with! I am sending them tomorrow!! Yes, i am starting to get used to rice so thats good!!  but i love and miss you all so much have an awesome week fam!!!

Elder Howell

Mahal Kita!!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

This is our second week response from Jackson.  It was right after Thanksgiving and it was great to hear from him!

Well hello family it is always so good hearing all of your emails and hear what is going on down in st geezy!! Every thing is still good here its nice and hot and its raining a little more than usual! But the food is still weird and its hard to get used to because its so different than the food we eat in the states, like they have spaghetti here and you think oh that sounds so gooood! but... its weird they put coconut milk and like sweet stuff in it so its normal spaghetti but its really sweet and odd haha but hopefully i will begin to like it! I have a lot of pictures to share this week and a video of me eating balut!! If you dont know what it is look it up, its so gross, but you have to do it to become a true filipino! So tanner prob wouldnt like the food here, i hopefully will begin to enjoy it or i am screwed!! But i am begining to teach more and more in the lessons, i can now bear my testimony and pray in tagalog so i can now pray in 3 different languages hahaha!! I also can just go up to people and ask questions like "do you know any mormons, what their religion is and stuff like that!! but elder Guard is helping me a lot and we are having a lot of fun! Yesterday we were teaching an investigator and she could speak good english so i had a big role in the lesson it was so awesome being able to express my true feelings to them!! Ohhh and on Friday we and Elder Guard we out and we went and ate at this sketchy burger place and got wayyy sick we thought we were going to die on saturday, we didnt even go out and work cause we were feeling so sick and nasty! I went poop 16 times, yes i counted how many times i did it it was a rough day, but we took some meds and were are all good now!! We refer to that day as the day of death! I am so jealous about black friday and thanksgiving i missed it so much!! I wanted to be home having thanksgiving!! hahah! But everything is still good here let me know how you all are doing!!

Love Elder Howell

How is your apartment: Well we have aircon but we never use it cause its really expensive, we all have to wash our clothes by hand which sucks so bad!! We have a fridge\freezer and there are 6 of us that live there and there is only room for four so it sucks! but we are trying to get a new and improved house!!
How is your companion? He is awesome and he is teaching me so much!! And we get a long so good!!, and its fun having someone who has the same city as me so we talk about home and are always being obidient missionarys!
Do u get along with KJ?Oh yes of course! We are awesome!!
Are you teaching anyone yet?Yeah we teach multiple people a day!!
How is the language coming along?  (Don't get discouraged...u are so smart!)Its okay its hard learning a language i have no idea how to speak but i wont give up!!
Did you get elder Oakes his shoes and socks?Nope, i have no way of giving them to someone unless there is a zone meeting which isnt until the 11th
What is one thing you learned this week? UMMM i learned what a bakla is hahaha its a guy who is gay and dresses like a girl!!!
How was it doing your laundry by hand?IT sucks so bad and takes forever!!


Here is an email from Jackson a week and a half after he arrived in the Philippines.  He was reassigned to the Quezon City North Mission after the devastating typhoon that hit Tacloban.

Hello Father!! I am here safe and sound so no need to worry haha!! But my companion is..... Elder KJ Guard from good ol Pine View high!! IT was so crazy and awesome when we found out that we were going to be companions! That flight was long and very very boring haha but i suffered through it and i arrived here safe and sound!! The mission president is so awesome!! He is pretty strict but he needs to be cause this mission used to have really really bad obidience problems so he has really stepped up and cleaned up the missionarys here! A lot of kids have been sent home in the last 6 months cause they were all being idiots!! I am in the Acacia area in the Caloocan stake, its a pretty dirty nasty poor area where sister missionarys arent even allowed because it is dangerous!! But dont tell mom that or she might have a heart attack! haha I havnt been in the main city yet and I dont even know if the main city is in our mission or if its in the Quezon City mission! I am not of fan of the food yet, but i heard that you just get used to it after a while same with the heat and humidity of it here! I am good!! My first day here was a pretty big culture shock!! By seeing the way that people lived and also seeing everything here so it was hard to get used to seeing that kind of stuff everyday! But i am good now and excited to serve!! I love all of your emails dad they are so uplifting and inspiring  as i read them! i cant wait to read more on monday!! Love you dad!!

Love Elder Howell