Sunday, May 29, 2016

Thailand Week 14: Korat


This was my name tag before I blacked out the แ in my name.

Elder Webb... biking with no hands... D:
video
Selfie game strong.



Eating a burger with Elder Webb... cheehee

























Riss! Here's my planner... It even has a secret pocket. :D and in it... is a picture of US! Whooo! Family together 4evahhh

Whew.

Whew.
WHEW.

ALOHA family! Yes, my first transfer is coming to an end! In fact, the
office elders are supposed to call us today and let us know if we get
to stay or move to a different area. The actual transfer day is on
Thursday. :) I am pretty sure that I am going to stay with Elder Reid
here in Korat. But, who knows? The Lord will have me serve where I am
needed. :)

Some experiences this past week...

Tuesday night... BUS RIDE TO ร้อย เอ็ด!
Why we're going to ร้อย เอ็ด? Because Wednesday is switch-off day with
the Zone Leaders!
That night we bought our tickets for 9:30pm and hanged around the area
eating bunch of snacks and drinks. I am pretty sure that I gained a
pound or two. Anyways, the bus didn't come to the station until 10ish.
We boarded the bus. Sat in the bus for an hour, waiting for the bus to
leave the station. At 11ish, many people exited the bus and complained
(Especially those that came from Bangkok). Turned out that the engine
of our bus gave up. It wouldn't start. So we left the bus, and hanged
out at the bus station until a back-up bus came. We ended up leaving
at 12 midnight. Yeah.
It seems like ever since I came into Korat, there has been a bunch of
mechanical and electronics problems. Even Elder Reid mentioned that.
Haha. Yay me.

Wednesday!
Them Zone leaders are awesome! They are just full of energy and
happiness! I had the opportunity to be companions with Elder Webb.
He's super chill, humble and HAPPY! We were able to visit many
less-active members, investigators and go inviting! It was so fun
inviting. It was a very productive day. :)

Lunch at the Bishop's place
We visited the Bishop and his wife (Brother อำนวย drove us again)! His
place is huge! We ate spaghetti (AMERICAN STYLE!!!). It was very
delicious. :) We had a nice chat and testimony session. We definitely
see the bishop's great love towards everyone. :)

Miracle Investigator! Her name is Sister มยุริ. She was a street
contact that I met at a nearby mall. She said that she has been to the
church before for some sort of sewing activity and she was interested
in learning about Jesus Christ. :) So we had an appointment with her
on Thursday. We had an amazing lesson. We taught about the gospel of
Jesus Christ. Given the opportunity to finish of with "enduring to the
end", I also shared my testimony and... invited her to be baptized!
She said..."Of course, that's why I came here today." Hahaha. We gave
her a Book of Mormon and agreed to meet again this Tuesday (tomorrow).
What's cool about Sister มยุริ? We followed up with her on Friday, the
day after our lesson, and asked about her prayers and reading. To our
expectation, she has been praying and reading. BUT BUT BUT She said
that she was halfway through the Book of Mormon! How cool is that! She
read half of the Book of Mormon in one day! She's probably finished
with it already. :) She's awesome. I really hope I'll be here next
transfer to witness her baptism.

Saturday was slow, but Sunday was lovely. The Sabbath day is always great. :)

In regards to the package that you guys have sent... I'm EXCTIED!!!
I don't know if the package came in yet... and won't know until I
return to Bangkok! But I just realized that If Elder Reid and I don't
transfer anywhere new, we won't be going to Bangkok until the end of
the my 2nd transfer! D: Hahah. It's okay. I'll figure something out or
wait for another 6 weeks. :)

Here's my favorite scripture of the week!
Doctrine and Covenants 25:12 - "For my soul delighteth in the song of
the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it
shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads."
I had the wonderful opportunity to sing a lot yesterday...  in return
I felt AWESOME! :D

Hope everything is well at home. I love you guys! <3

Elder Santecooooo is OUT!

ALOOOOHHHHAAAAAAAAAA!!!!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Thailand Week 13: Korat

Miracles. :)

This week has been AMAZING! I started off the week's study with an
awesome talk called, "Faith in Jesus Christ" from my Bangkok, Thailand
Mission Packet. It shared many inspiring stories of successful
missionaries and helped me realize that it by their faith in the Lord
that they were able to become effective missionaries. It gave me a
major boost to really put my faith and trust in the Lord. It's easier
said than done. But, I really wanted to see myself actually doing the
Lord's work as He desires me to do it. So I was willing to turn to him
with all my heart, might, mind and strength.

Miracles:
This is probably dumb of me, but just now realize that when I want
miracles to happen, I can't just have faith in Christ. I need to do
something about it! I need to work towards it, serve others, open my
mouth, bear my testimony, etc.


1. Gift of Tongues. It's real. Amazingly, I can understand and talk
much more than I actually thought I could. Just well enough to chat
with many members and investigators, share scriptures, and ultimately
help everyone come closer to Christ.

- Sister มก: SHE IS AWESOME. She has brought one of her friend to
church and is currently an investigator. :) In Sunday Class, while we
sang the opening Hymn, "Nearer my God to Thee", she was crying. She
cried so much that she couldn't say the opening prayer. So the teacher
videoassigned someone else to say it. After it was finished, she walked out
of the classroom. The spirit prompted me to talk to her. But I didn't
follow that prompting. :( I was prompted 3 times. The third time was
the strongest. But I still didn't act upon it. :( Just seconds after
this powerful prompting, she entered into the classroom. "I LOST MY
OPPORTUNITY TO TALK TO HER! LOST MY OPPORTUNITY TO HELP HER GROW HER
TESTIMONY!" I was bummed. But then the spirit prompted me to talk to
her after class. And I did. Enos 1:27 :) As soon as I shared a
scripture with her, she was bawling all again. I requested of her to
remember this feeling that she had, and to let it be a testimony of
God's Love for her. :)

- Brother จุเนิยร์: Another awesome guy. He was a less-active and
technically still is (Hasn't gone to church early enough to partake of
the sacrament), but is definitely improving. Before I came to Korat,
he hardly came to the church. But now he comes at least 3 times
throughout the week for activities and church. :) His testimony has
been growing once again. Oh and guess what? He even asked if he could
help us teach new investigators! He's awesome. Anywho, here's the
experience that I had with him...( I sent this experience to President
Johnson. Haha)




"One miracle that I had this past week was when I had a member talked
about his ex-girlfriend experimenting with black magic. During the
discussion, the member asked Elder Reid, "What would you do?" Elder
Reid blanked out and really did not know with assurance. So, he turned
to me and asked me the same question. I also didn't know, but I was
prompted to just open my scriptures. As I opened my scriptures, I
opened to Moses 1. It wasn't marked or tagged, but it opened to that
exact chapter and page. Then I just started reading. I then realized
that this was the perfect scripture for the member. It was shared
Moses' experience as he constantly begged for God's help during
Satan's temptations and torments. I shared this scripture with the
member and gave him the opportunity to really think about Moses'
experience and how he could apply to his very own life. He knew what
he had to do. We helped him remember that good will always win over
any sorts of evil. At the very moment, he decided that he will always
turn to God. :) We were able to kneel in prayer in which we all felt
the overwhelming power of the Holy Ghost. "


2. The members' relationship with each other has been growing! The
members' desire to serve God has grown, testimonies has grown. The
Love of God has touched many hearts this past week and it was amazing
to be a witness of it. This was amazing, it was because of the love of
the members, that many of the investigators knew that we had something
special.

3. Investigators! We had 9 investigators come to church yesterday! 6
of them are new investigators that we had invited this past week.
Brother จิ๋ว and I worked together inviting. Brother จิ๋ว and I were
able to rack up 20ish potential investigators (with numbers/address)
in the 4 hours of inviting that had this past week. Brother จิ๋ว is
awesome. He'll become a great missionary. :)

Jesus Christ really does make all things possible. Think about it. :)



I know my purpose here. It's to help EVERYONE come unto Christ.
Everyone isn't perfect, but the gospel is. Therefore, I will forever
teach everyone of this wonderful gospel.

Here is my favorite Scripture of the Week: Mosiah 8:18...
"Thus God has provided a means that man, through faith, might work
mighty miracles; therefore he becometh a great benefit to his fellow
beings."

I want to have the faith to perform miracles... not for my own good...
but for OTHERS. I want others to benefit from the miracles that I may
perform. :)

Once again, I am thankful to be a missionary. It's amazing. Thanks Mom
and Dad, Kahuku First Ward, Teachers, Friends, Families, and everyone
else... for making this possible for me. <3

1/8th pau with my mission... Sure went by fast! But I'm not done yet! :)

Much love,
Elder Santeco





I was reading Mosiah... and there was one scripture that reminded me
of dad. LOL Mosiah 6:7... Lead by example!!! (Ignore that part that
said they had no contention for "THREE YEARS" ) LOL

Hope yall are doing FHE! I miss that! :) Love you guys!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Thailand Week 12: Korat

Ants! Ants! Ants in my pants!!!

Alohaaa to my beautiful Friends and Families!!!

Whew. P-days... It's perfect day to think back on my previous week and
then plan for what will I do better this week. It's also an awesome
day to just to take a moment and realize the blessings that I have
received. Realize that God is working through me. He is providing a
way for me to be a better missionary so that I can serve Him better.
:)

Mom, dad.... DON'T WORRY! I don't spend much time doing this "WHAT ARE
MY BLESSINGS?!?!" thing... When I'm not doing that... I'm doing the
Lord's work. :D

Hahaha. So dad, we have a Filipino member named Micheal here in Korat
and while having lunch with him, guess what he brought up? The NBA
Playoffs! Hahahha! I love those days when we rooted for San Antonio's
Spurs! Ahhhh, Leonard was such an awesome player. :) Please enjoy the
Playoffs with Jesse if time allows you guys to do so. :)

Okay. Let's talk about why I chose this "Ants! Ants! Ants in my pants!!!" title.

I had 2 events with ants this past week. Ever since then... I think
I'm actually scared of them. Hahah.

1. I usually shower at night. So after daily planning, I grabbed my
clothes/towel and headed to the shower. When I finished showering... I
grabbed my towel and began to dry myself. That's when the horror
started. "OUCH! OW! *SMACK* AHHHH!!!!!!!!" I have gotten 9 bites in a
period of 3 seconds. Had 2 bites on my buttocks. Hahaha. They've left
their marks of me. I actually still have these little red bumps from
them. But's slowly going away. :)

2. Last Saturday, we had the opportunity to do a service project at a
member's house. It was us two elders and two other members (Micheal
and Klang) that came to help out. We did not know what we going to do
until we actually got there. We just knew that we were going to clean
something. When we got there, it turned out that we were going to cut
down tree branches. Sounds easy right? We even had a tree cutter and
ladders. WRONG! There were ants EVERYWHEREEEEEEE!!!  BILLIONS! If not,
TRILLIONS! of ants! And they weren't like ordinary ants, they were
HUGE! I'm actually getting the creeps as I type this. Hahaha. So we
went ahead and start cutting them branches and it didn't turn out so
well. They just crawled everywhere, hence we actually screamed
"THERE'S ANTS IN MY PANTS!!!" and were jumping around frantically.
Haha. For the rest of the cutting we proceeded to cut the branches
from the roof.... because we did not want these ants falling all over
us. Regardless of us being on higher ground, we battled with them
ants! They traveled to us via the branch cutter... and they came in
hundreds! So I went ahead and grabbed a broom and swept the ants off
the branch cutter as Bother Micheal sawed through the branches. It
felt like I was in some sort of game! Hahahahahha! "DEFEND THE TREE
CUTTER!"... I think the worst moment was when we had to move the
branches to a pile on the other side of the house. Ironically, I had
the most protection (jeans and gloves yo)... so I was the only one
that was feeling "okay" to do it. Haha, I ran with these huge branches
like never before! Then had the help of three others people to remove
the ants that were on me. Meh, at the end of the day... I'm pretty
sure I have gotten bitten at least 200 times. At least these ants
didn't leave red bumps like the other ants. :) All in all, it feels
good to help out the members! Service is awesome!

We'll actually be returning to this member's house this week to cut
down more branches... she claims that this particular tree isn't
infested with ants... But I'll probably go ahead a buy a painter's
suit just to be safe. Hahaha.

This was from the House's balcony... Hahah. After this we proceeded to
the roof. :)
video


Yup. That's it. So my family at home, please please please don't leave
crumbs on the kitchen table/floor. I don't want another experience
like this. Haha.

Okay okay okay. Enough about ants.

This past week, I think I've been more frustrated with the language
than ever. I've gotten several headaches during lessons, meetings,
etc. It's a struggle. But today, being able to look back at my past
week... I have been able to recognize the small accomplishments. I
have been improving my ability to converse with others and ultimately
share the gospel with members, thuk thuk drivers, motorcycle drivers,
and others. I've been a better missionary by opening my mouth and
sharing the gospel. Ahhhh. I just need to remember to always have
faith in the Lord, for he has provided a way for me. :)

As for the miracles that I referred to last week's email.
Here's one...
Last Sunday, it was raining hard so we asked บ.โอ๋ give us a ride and
help us teach an investigator. So we took a ride in his awesome wagon,
it had air conditioning and everything. During our ride there, the car
broke down. It just wouldn't start. So Elder Reid and I jumped out of
the car and pushed the car to the curbside. Did I mention? It was
raining. There were puddles everywhere, so my shoes/socks/pants got
wet. Hahah. Popped the hood open, figured out the problem... and I
went ahead and started to fix it up. The issue was the the wires broke
out of it's wiring harness, and these wires were for the fuel pump.
Later on, บ.โอ๋ 's brother in law came by and finished it up by
reconnecting the ground wire. I couldn't do that myself because I
didn't have a 12mm socket wrench on hand. Hahahaha. Thank goodness
everything worked out, and we had a working car again. It was great to
be able to help out บ.โอ๋... :) We proceeded to our investigator's
house and had a wonderful lesson. :)

Dad, บ.โอ๋ is actually a ward clerk, and he does a printing service.
He's such a hard working, humble, and loving guy. Thanks dad for being
an example to me. :)

Okay. That's good enough for today.

Here's my favorite scripture of the day: Enos 1:27. I want to have
that same joy as Enos did. I know that I can do so by forever serving
Him and enduring to the end. I personally want to believe that my
Savior would extend His arm out to me and say... "Come unto me, ye
blessed, there is a place prepared for you in the mansions of my
Father. Amen." :) I hope all of you guys have a similar desire. :)

I LOVE YOU GUYS!... Thank you for your support, your words, and love.
It has touched my heart and has increased my desire to become not just
a better missionary, but a better person.

Remember your Father in Heaven, and that He loves you! Remember your
Savior, be filled with His love. Remember that all of us aren't
perfect... but we definitely can improve as we constantly keep the
faith, repent, pray for help, study His words, and keep the
commandments.

:) FAMILIES TOGETHER <4 EVER! LALALALAHHV YOU GUYS!

- Elder Santeco


This is Cola. He's a friendly dog. He got promoted to represent The
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.


This is my new kind of breakfast. One pack of noodles with an egg.
LOL. The furikake makes a huge difference.




















Artsy...?
















It poured heavily yesterday.. The video doesn't display it very well though.
video

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Thailand Week 11: Korat

It's a Marvelous Work of LOVE

Gahhhh! How can I not be happy? :) I get to be a servant to my Father in Heaven, a missionary. It's hard work, but it's fun work.

I've only been out on my mission for about 3 months and it has already
been a life-changing experience. Given the opportunity to not think
about the worldly things but rather focus on being an instrument to
our Father, I have been able to see the small/big miracles on daily
basis. It really shows how much God cares for me and will always help
me as I put my faith in the Lord.

Do you actually need to be called as a "missionary" to see miracles in
life? Nope. Definitely not. I know that God is constantly extending
His hand out to us... Because of His great love for each one us, He is
constantly blessing us. But it's up to us to recognize it. Open your
eyes. Search the blessings that He has given to you. Realize that God
is always watching over you as any loving Father would do. His Love is
real. I have felt it... and I will never forget it. I hope you guys
would take the time to pray to Him with all your heart, and when you
do so... you will be filled with His Love. That's a promise. :)

Mother's Day!
I am so thankful for all the mothers in the world. Mothers always
plays a huge role in families (everyone does.... but today's Mother's
Day... so let's focus on our mamas..:) ) I had the chance to read the
Family Proclamation to the World a couple days ago... and it brings me
peace knowing that my very own parents follows the counseling of our
prophets. Doing so, we have established a family of love, joy, and
never-ending laughter. :)

Mom. You are the BEST mom ever. You're amazing. You've done a lot in
life that constantly increases my testimony of how AWESOME you are. I
am so glad that you and dad raised us up in this gospel of Jesus
Christ. It's really what holds us together. It's because of this
gospel that we can get through all trails and continually progress in
the Light of Christ. I love you. I look forward to that day when are
all together in the our Father's and Savior's presence. :) Families
Together Forever.

Thank you all for the lovely Skype session. It's always good to see
you all. Have a wonderful Mother's day. (That always includes you
Aunty Nuj!) :)

- Elder Santeco / San / Tesco....

I actually have a bunch of experiences/miracles that happened this
past week... but I'll write about it next week. Don't have much time
left. :) Love you guys. <4 ever


YOU TOO MARVY! Happy mother's day. :)

I have others... but don't have time to send them.... :) I will next
week though.

MANGOOOOOOOSSS FOR DAYSSS

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Thailand Week 10: Korat

It is still HOT

Everything is hot. Really. The sun is always blazing hot! and when there's wind... it feels like being in a dryer! ผมไม่ likey. It does help when I'm drying my laundry... but not while I'm wearing them. Blehhhh. Oh, and spicy food does not help. Hahaha.

Speaking of food. I really think that I am getting used to this spiciness. My mouth is just accepting it more easily as the days pass by. But sadly, I still sweat a bunch. Hahaha. Today, I had a bit of American food... I had a pack of ramen from the MTC... and it was chicken flavor! Whoop whoop! The soup was really satisfying. I wished I had more than one pack. I'll probably go to 7's today and buy some ramen from there... I am totally expecting a bunch of unique flavors, and no chicken flavor. Haha. 

Cooked and ate some rice too! But didn't cook eggs. It was too much work. So it was just rice and furikake. Meh.

There has been a lot that has happened this past week. I thought I had brought my journal with me... but nope! ผมไม่มี. Anywhooo, I'll just share several highlights of my past week.

Meet the members!
We received a request from our zone leaders to meet all of the members from our church. That is 100ish members in 7 days. Hahah. Yeah, and we only got 6. But it was very effective. We got the chance to get familiar with the members, share a message, and serve them. Every member that we met were very VERY happy to meet with us. I guess it's been a while since these members got any visits from the elders. Every member that we met definitely had a greater desire to come unto Christ and participate in missionary work. I am glad to have the opportunity to help these members remember just how important this gospel is to them and how it has made an impact on their lives. When they realized this, many of the members immediately gave referrals to us and wanted us to teach their friends/families(I was soooo happpyyy!!), but I personally rejoiced in something better. I felt their desire to help others to come unto Christ... and help them feel the same joy that they feel. It felt goooooood. :) We extended the challenge to them to bring their friend on Sunday and they did! We now have more investigators, hence we have more work to do.

There was one day that when we visited a member, a storm came. IT RAIN HARD! It flooded the roads. (Perhaps about 6 inches high)  Hahah, it was pretty fun. We biked in the waters (when the rain stopped of course). Whooo! Sadly I didn't take a picture or videoed it. But it was a good day. Sweat a lot, but it was good. It's always a good day to be a missionary. :D

At one of the member's house... she had a pretty garden. Made me miss the garden that we have at home! I hope they're still striving! :) But anywhooo...She had everything! Even squash!........... I learned the word for squash. Hahahhaha. That definitely took me by surprise. :)

Save One!
Save One is a market place and it's loaded with many people! That Thursday night, I was able to participate in inviting others to learn English with us. Of course, I had to invite in Thai. Hehe. I was really scared at first. I guess it was because I didn't want to bother anyone. But, when I realized that there is a greater purpose behind all of this and that this would be a great opportunity to invite others to come unto Christ. I just jumped into action! And I did it with a smile! :D I was able to give out LOTS of invitation cards. I am glad that I took action, because as soon as I did... all the other members that were participating in this activity had this huge boost of confidence and just started inviting EVERYONE. Tomorrow, we are expecting a lot of people  to attend our English class, that we will be having multiple classrooms. We are expecting many, because there's a FB group for the Korat's LDS English Class... and many people joined the group that following day. :)

We have an awesome group of To-Be missionaries! They are sooooooooooo goooood! Very knowledgeable(much more than me... I really mean it. Hahha) and I can see the light of Christ in all of them. They always look for opportunities to love and serve others. :) They'll be great missionaries!

Bangkok!
We went to Bangkok last week! Left Korat on Thursday night, and arrived in Bangkok at 2 in the morning. We hanged out at the elder's places in Bangkok. It wasn't really fun sleeping on the cold hard ceramic floor. Hahah. But it was better than nothing. Got the chance to shower too... so that was good. :)

Basically we went to Bangkok for ONE SIGNATURE. Really. It only took 2 seconds. Hahaha. It was for the worker's questionnaire/permit.But it was good to meet with my MTC's district (They all had to sign.. lol). I certainly do miss them but am glad to see that we are all being put to work. :)

Didn't return home until 9pm on Friday. Even though it has been several days ago...I am still tired. I will definitely use today's time to get my energy back. Blehh, did I mention? We are going back to Bangkok this Thurday... Elder Reid will be finishing his mission soon, so he has to attend this meeting prior. I guess it's like a "Soon-to-Leave Meeting"... But it's all good.

OH! I should mention, Elder Reid will be going to Hawaii after his mission. His sister will be attending BYUH in the next semester, ฉะนั้น he and his family will hang out for a week before dropping off her sister at the school. :) So yeah, he probably will meet up with you guys.

To finish this off... I am really really glad to be a missionary. It is such a blessing. Aside from being sticky and drenched... I am enjoying every single minute here and I am glad that others are able to see that. :) Members constantly comment on how they love that I always have a smile. :D Regardless if I don't understand everything that they are saying. Haha...

Awww mannnn.... I just cannot wait for that day when I come home and tell myself, "I did my best... what a boss." :) And then express my thanks and gratitude to my Savior. :) I'll probably say the same thing on my last day here on earth. Hahah. Meanwhile, I'll focus on the present and my mission, so don't worry! :)

FAMILYYYYY! I love youuuuuuuuuuuuuuu!!! It brings me joy to see that all is well at home. It brings me happiness to know that everyone growing the Characters of Christ. *sigh* You guys are awesome. Keep being awesome.

Scripture for the day-
Ether 6:3 - "And thus the Lord caused stones to shine in the darkness, to give light unto men, women, and children, that they might not cross the great waters in darkness."
Be that rock! Let the Lord fill you with light, then help others receive that very same light.

-Elder Santeco

Central Plaza WestGate Mall. It is HUGE! We ate lunch at Texas Chicken
prior to leaving to Korat.



These chips doeeee... and them kitties.


Met some doggies at a member's house. They are the same kind as Uncle
PJ's and Aunty Nuj's!

video

video

video


And I think the other one is a chiwawaaaaa or something. :)