Sunday, December 18, 2016

Christmas Plans

Letter to Mom....

On Christmas, we are going to open my packages and maybe if we have enough money, we will buy a roast chicken and make some rice! We'll eat it next to the tree  and I'll read " The Night Before Christmas" and it'll be 665626262000 times better than last year.  I love Tongans, I have a ton of Tongan friends now haha. ( I told him about the missionaries who lead my pathway class who are Tongan.)

Here is a story.  Remember the OYM from Buendia in the truck?  Well, yesterday, we went to teach them and they weren't there, so we followed this little kid who said that his family used to be taught.  We talked to his aunt and apparently they were taught last December and they even were going to church, but then both of the missionaries got pulled out of the area and they got forgotten about.  But before the sisters left, they promised her that missionaries would return and made her promise that when they did to listen to them.  We will teach her later, it was cool.  

Letter to Dad...

We had a cool experience teaching about repentance.  There is a family that we are teaching that all of the sudden started to avoid us and we didn't know why.   They have to get married before they get baptized, and they really want to but they didn't believe that it was possible since the brother doesn't have a birthday or birth certificate.  Because of this discouragement, the sister gave in to the temptation by her friends to drink at a party and because of this combination, they had decided that there was no hope for them.  We shared and testified to them about what Jesus Christ did and that no matter how many times they fall, they can get up and that Heavenly Father will prepare a way for them for them to get married and baptized.  The Spirit was strong.  We still don't know how they will get married, but we know they will, I'll let you know when they get baptized.
 My story I'm gonna tell mom is cool too, but just so you know, I am still up to date on my journal from Oct 22 2015 until now.  And it's fun to read haha because I have changed a lot.

Monday, December 12, 2016

2 Weeks in Manila

Letters to Dad...

We had a lot of cool experiences following promptings this week.  One time, we were really in a hurry, but out of the corner of my eye, I saw a lady and felt very strongly that I needed to talk to her.  Since we were in a hurry we kept walking, but as the feeling got stronger, I turned around and went back the 20 yards to talk to her.  We didn't have time to do trust building so I just asked if she had met any missionaries before, I didn't even say hi now that I think about it haha.  She said that her mom is a member and that missionaries used to teach her all the time in the province, we'll try to teach her this week.

Elder Haini is going to be in our mission leader conference on Wednesday and he might interview us, so that'll be awesome!  He's our area authority, but he grew up in Bountiful and even went to Bountiful High haha.
I love you guys a ton and thank you for always taking the time to email me every week, I always feel lucky.

That's cool about Bishop.  The Haynies came and some awesome stuff happened.  First, he knows Harold haha.  He was like, "Zesiger, one of the finest men I've ever known owned a shop called Zesiger Automotive in Bountiful"  haha.  I guess Harold used to buy car parts from Elder Haynie's dad.  Then at the MLC he closed his testimony with something that he had heard Elder Cook say about Jesus Christ " I know His face, I know His voice, I know He lives."  Crazy huh?!

I sent him the little Christmas tree.
We are at war with Satan right now in our area, we had 9 people looking sure to be baptized on Christmas, but yesterday it got knocked down to 4 because of tons of crazy reasons, it was so stressful that I got sick haha and I have a little bit of a cold right now, but we'll win.  One crazy thing was with an investigator, they weren't at church, so we dropped by their house and apparently a representative from Saudi Arabia had come to their house to offer them jobs abroad.  They decided that they were going to go, so we taught them and told them to pray about it since that is like a 100 % chance of becoming less active if that happens! I'm excited to hear your email, send me a story if you can, I love you Dad!

Elder Zesiger

Letters to Mom....
The Olangga family is doing awesome and all went to church on Sunday!  We are trying to organize two weddings so we can have a giant baptism of 2 families on the 24th so we need your prayers.

Coby's grown up a ton haha, when I left his head was a lot more round.  We see miracles everyday, your packages were some haha I love you.  We set up the tree and I'll send a picture. Elder Fawson does know how, (to make jello) haha but we haven't made it yet.  I'll just bring the turkey to the AP's house next time we go haha.  Here is one miracle...

We were at Buendia, after the mission tour with Elder and Sister Haynie, and it's about 2 or 3 hours from our house, so no taxis ever want to take us haha.  We waited for like 3 hours and then I felt like we had to cross the street.  We did, and then I saw a guy sitting in his car at a red light and the window was down and I felt like I needed to talk to him, so I did.  He turned out to be from our area and the next day we went and taught his family and they all have baptismal dates now.  Cool huh?  Right after we talked to him, a taxi came, so Heavenly Father just made us wait for him haha.

Story sent to Shelby....

One funny thing that happened was this:  I was eating a burger at this food place called minute burger and all of these kids came up to me asking for money since I am American.  Also, all of the adults were looking at me cuz I was talking to them and showing off my Tagalog, Cebuano, and Ilocano.  It's bawal (against the rules) to give the kids money so I told them to leave, but then one asked for water, so I gave him a waterfall.  It was funny, but then he asked for another one and this time he laughed and spit the water and a little food all over me.  Haha it was funny cuz all the adults around freaked at him, so I said it was ok and the kid ran away.

I need to marry an American girl that speaks Tagalog so I can have a secret language like the Packs!
Jeff sent his this tie but it is too wild to wear as a missionary haha.

I sent packages on different dates but he got them all at once. One there from Grandma Z too.

He says this Christmas is going to be much happier then last Christmas.

Monday, November 21, 2016

This week was probably the craziest of my whole mission.

Letter to Shelby....

We were teaching one of our families about the temple.  His wife died last year and they have 4 kids.  As we shared about it, the oldest one, who is 12, asked if it would help her see her mom again, We promised that it would and that families really were forever.  The spirit was really strong and as we were testifying, the clear thought came into my head "she is here".  Elder Cortez said that he felt their mom's presence too.  It was awesome!

Letter to Mom...

I asked him if his mission was still hard.

Ya it's hard a lot of the time, probably 99 percent of the time, but the 1 percent more than makes up for it many, many times over.  I'm grateful for every hard thing that I have made it through, I feel that I have changed a lot and i can't really imagine what my life would be like if I didn't leave home.  I love you so much for helping my get here.  I know that this church is true.  I know that I can make a difference in the world now and not just get rich for my self like my plans were before I left haha.  I love you mom.  I already said a lot to dad but we found some cool new families this week.  They all have a lot of kids, so we have like 40 people in our teaching pool right now and they are all awesome!

Letter to Dad....

Hey dad, I'll pray for bishop.  This was actually a crazy week for me also, probably the craziest of my whole mission.  We were able to teach 47 lessons, find 4 new families and have 12 people at church, we are leading the mission again, but everything changed when we found out that one of progressing investigators, Den Den Mordido was murdered.  He disappeared on Tuesday and they found his body with two gun shots in the head on Sunday.  We went to his funeral and comforted his 18 year old wife, Lea, with her two kids, one 2 and the other 2 months old.  It was crazy to see his body, I really wanted to use the priesthood to raise him from the dead.  So I grabbed Elder Cortez and we went and prayed about it and both of us felt that that would be the wrong thing to do.  I did not know why, but the feeling was very clear.

They were supposed to be baptized on December 17.  We are going to do everything we can to get Lea baptized and get Den Den's work done in the temple.  It's really weird to think that I talked to him last Sunday at church and then I just saw him in a coffin...

Everyone else in our area is doing good and we are seeing immense amounts of miracles.  I know that this is the Lord's work dad, I know that this church is true more than I know anything else and I know that Heavenly Father has his plans for each of us.  Sometimes it's just hard to reconcile with those plans.  I am starting to love the scriptures a lot.

Any advice haha?  This email was supposed to be awesome cuz other than den den, this was easily my best week ever.

I love you Dad

Monday, November 14, 2016

This was the most tiring week of my life!

Letter to Dad....

November 6, 2016
This was the most tiring week of my entire life haha.  Since we had mission leadership council and interviews with president and St Luke' s (hospital for his eye), we had to wake up pretty early for a lot of days hahaha.  But I'm still alive.  My interview with President was the best interview of my life.  We discussed a lot of stuff and he thanked me because he said that he has noticed that wherever I am "the work blossoms"  it was cool.  When I got to this area, it had averaged about 2 progressing investigators for the last long time and the mission average is about 2.6 haha.  We average about 11 right now.  But I think that Heavenly Father noticed that I needed to be humbled, so on Sunday, for the second time in my mission, no one came to church, so we are now at 0 hahaha.  But we will get it back up to 15 this week, you can follow up with me on that.  It's amazing to me how Heavenly Father has been sending us a new family of like 5-10 almost every week. I asked President why and he just said that I have been blessed with a missionary personality that people flock to, and it is a special gift from Heavenly Father.  You can see why I needed to be humbled.

Elder Zesiger and Elder Cortez
I discovered one of my weaknesses is that I cannot handle being micro managed.  President said that this is his weakness too and it stems from his childhood.  So I looked back into mine and I think that it comes from working on stuff with you haha.  I would always ask a ton of questions and you would just tell me to figure it out for myself, so now when people tell me every single detail, I get kind of bugged haha.

At the end of the interview, I asked him why I am here in Las Piñas.  He told me that my job is to do exactly what I am doing right now.  Set the area on fire and then inspire the whole zone by increasing their love for God.  We've got work to do!

November 13, 2016
I met this guy on Sunday in our ward, I started talking to him cuz I saw he was wearing a Mont Blanc pen and a gold Rolex president watch.  It was sick.Over the last little while, I've started to believe the false doctrine that expensive watches aren't that cool.  But seeing that brought back the truth that they are awesome, I've been wearing fake watches for too long haha.

That's crazy about Bishop, but I saw an amazing miracle this week that shows there's hope.  Like I might have said before a sister from Santa Mesa moved into Elder Fawson's area at the same time that I got transferred here.  On Saturday, I went on exchanges in his area and taught her.  I was super surprised when she said that her cancer is gone!  Earlier this week, she had gone to the hospital and they said that it disappeared.  Back in August, I gave her a blessing that she would be healed and be able to raise a family in the church, I felt really strongly about it, but was kind of discouraged that I was wrong because the doctors came back and said that she only had less than two years to live.  That was the last time I saw her.  About a week ago, she asked Elder Fawson for a blessing too and he said about the same words.  It made me think as I know that the blessing really has nothing to do with me or Fawson, and I know that more than one blessing for the same illness makes no difference, so I thought, why did Heavenly Father wait until the second blessing to heal her.  As I thought about it I realized that He delayed the effect of the blessing until she had the faith sufficient enough to be healed.  It was really cool though to witness like a Christ level healing!

We are still seeing a ton of blessings in the area and it's super fun!
I love you dad! 

Letter to Mom....
November 6, 2016

The new area is great! We are teaching about 5 progressing families!  It also has the best ward in the mission for missionary work. It is called the Las Piñas 1st ward, we eat good.  No we still do not have toilet paper, haha that's not just a Santa Mesa thing, that's a whole Philippines thing!:) hahaha

The baptism went great.  CJ's family, the Menil family, which is my favorite, were so happy because now that he is baptized, their whole family is complete.  It was a cool feeling.  The font also over flowed a little bit before the baptism so the speakers were all standing in a little puddle,  it was a super fun experience haha.

I was feeling kind of bad about Cheska before she was baptized because i didn't feel like I really had that big of a part in her conversion, like I just kind of showed up...  But a couple of days before the baptism, we were teaching her and we asked her when and how she really knew that this church was true.  She said that she had had doubts for a long time but when she read Mosiah 2 and prayed about it, she knew that it was all true.  On my first time there, I had been praying that I could give her a passage in the Book of Mormon that would speak to her, I prayed really hard and I gave her Mosiah 2.  It was a cool tender mercy from Heavenly Father to make me feel good.:)

I'll get some pictures of this new family that we got and their house.  As another tender mercy, Heavenly Father gave me a little bit of Palawan in our area.  They are the Aliñio family and they have 10 kids.  To get to their house, you go through this tunnel and then it opens up to this jungle, with just dirt ground and little houses made of wood and metal sheets.  There are chickens and ducks and dogs, and cats, and goats that run around and there is even a cool pond that I fell into up to my shins with about 30 naked kids swimming in it.  It is awesome!

I love you mom, thanks for being the best mission mom ever. :)
Elder Zesiger

November 13, 2016

I've read that talk, it's cool!  Happy Birthday!  I'm sorry that i didn't send a present, I decided that I'm just going to send them at Christmas probably.  I love you mom and I am so so so grateful for you and all that you do for me:)

My story for this week hopefully will make you laugh.  One of my greatest weaknesses still is that I am directionally challenged.  On Thursday, I had to lead an exchange in our area and even though I've been walking in it now every day I still don't have it memorized. (Oh no! sweet child of mine just started playing in the computer lab, I don't know if I can resist singing!) focus focus focus.... any way.  I prayed a lot for Heavenly Father's help so I wouldn't look like an incompetent leader haha and so that we could teach our people.  We saw so many miracles as I would get lost, we would immediately see a member or an investigator and they would show us the way and we were still able to teach about 10 lessons and then 11 people came to church:)  I love Heavenly Father haha and it probably totally looked like I knew where I was going haha!

Mom I love you and I'm so grateful that you were always at home with me, even when I was not supposed to be there haha.  I'm so grateful for you always making me amazing food, and always keeping the fridge full.  Here, i just eat eggs and bread and ramen noodles, but I still imagine your food when I'm really hungry.  (this song has the sickest guitar solo!)  Thank you for teaching me all that I know about the gospel.  Just so you know, I love reading now.  I have read the Book of Mormon almost 4 times and the rest of the standard works one each, and I'm on my second time through the missionary library and Jesus the Christ.  I love you so much mom and I hope that you had an amazing birthday.

Elder Zesiger

Part of a letter to Shelby....

My story for you this week was when I came very close to death.  We were in a computer lab, collecting numbers to report and all of the sudden, I really, really, really needed to go to the bathroom.  I started to search and the lab had a bathroom luckily.  There was no light, so I brought in a flashlight,  it was full of mosquitoes and spiders and there was no top part to the toilet, so I just had to squat there.  When I was done, I looked for some water to use cuz that's how you go to the bathroom here and all I found was a plastic barrel with about 2 inches of water in it.  I checked it out with my flash light and discovered that it was full of old paint chips and dead bugs.  I sat there for awhile and saw no other choice.  When I was done, I tried to find some soap and all that was in there was an empty little packet of laundry detergent.  I shook it and got out about 6 little grains and used that and the bug water to wash my hands haha.

Be grateful for America!

Monday, October 31, 2016

I'm a missionary for Halloween this year, we actually celebrate it everyday, and go trick or treating to everyone we see, but no one gives us candy.

Letter to Caden....He asked if they celebrate Halloween there and told him that he just got an iPhone 7.

We do! I'm a missionary for Halloween this year, we actually celebrate it everyday, and go trick or treating to everyone we see, but no one gives us candy.

I drew a witch in my planner.

Haha I don't even know what an iphone 7+ is haha, and by the way, what is an apple pen? or a pineapple pen? is that big in America?

I had a group of 17 year old girls attack me a couple of days ago and grab my nose!

Letter to Dad...

That's cool! Guess what, Elder Cortez was in the hospital for his nose, so I just sat there and talked to the nurse, Sister Turner for 5 hours and learned a ton of cool stuff!  She served among the Navajos and it is crazy how many of their legends line up with the gospel and Book of Mormon.  There is a tribe that lives above another tribe because of an ancient covenant where the one buried their weapons and the lower one promised to protect them!  It's awesome!
She also said that when she lived in California, Eddie Van Halen was best friends with her oldest son and when they were little, he and Alex would always come over to her house!

One of our progressing investigators told us a cool story this week.  She said that a while ago, she had a dream that she was in a large, beautiful room, wearing white.  She was also surrounded by many people also wearing white and singing hymns.  She said that she felt scared cuz she didn't know anyone in the room and she backed into a corner.  Then, a man came up to her and said "daughter, everything is going to be alright"  Then she woke up and prayed for a long time to know what the dream meant, then the next day, we showed up!  It was awesome! haha

Letter to Mom...

I am terrible at saving money right now, probably one of the worst in the mission haha, I have no emergency fund, so I made a goal this month to be really thrifty like Elder Fawson.  That will be cool, for the 5th ( I told him about the family party we have planned) , we have a couple baptisms scheduled for then too!  

I had one of the craziest things happen to me a couple of days ago.  Elder Cortez and I were sitting in a computer lab, preparing for the state coordination and all of the sudden this lady turned to me and started telling me stories of how she has been raped and many murderers and after her and how she has murdered many people all over the world, then she started naming all the books in the Book of Mormon but said that she was done with Jesus Christ cuz she had "suffered too much for him"  you'll have to remind me when I get home to tell you the whole story cuz it's crazy and I don't have time to type it all.

11 people went to church so that was awesome and a lot of people are progressing in this area, it's cool how Heavenly Father keeps sending them cuz for the last couple of years there always averaged just 2 or 3. I love you mom, you are the best.

Monday, October 17, 2016

I had a lot of cool experiences with prayer this week....

Letter to Dad...

I knew it would be a girl! (We told him we are having a baby girl!) I loved Reva Johnson.  Tell Keith that I said that and I always looked up to him and her.  President Uchtdorf's talk was for them.  The Plan of Salvation is amazing. 

I'm poor right now, but I think I'll be able to live cheaper once I get back home after living here so long haha.  The other day I was thinking of all of the stuff that I have at home and I was amazed.  I have 7 guitars, a watch collection, a gun collection, a car, a dishwasher, a washing machine, a microwave.  All of these things are worth a lot more than the combined possessions of most of my friends here, it made me feel kind of bad.  

I have the coolest ward in the mission, the Bishop stood up and talked about Dallin H. Oaks talk and said that we shouldn't just pray for the missionaries, but we should pray for our own missionary experiences.  And I thought that just to make sure that you guys do this, you should send me a missionary experience each week, even if it's just small.

Right after this I am preparing for the zone meeting tomorrow.  I love you Dad.

Letter to Mom...

Hey Mom, this week was awesome!  It was the fastest week of my mission, I think it was just because I was busy doing zone stuff.  I went to Mission Leaders Council for the first time which is freaking awesome.  All of the zone leaders and sister training leaders get taught by president and discuss the direction of the mission.  Sister Barton and Sister Holzworth were there, and we ate and talked and it felt like the MTC again haha it was cool.

I had a lot of cool experiences with prayer this week.  About last week, my eye started to get blurry, but since we are so busy, I wasn't going to tell the nurse until it went black.  I started feeling like I really needed to text her, but I didn't want to.  Finally I asked Heavenly Father and I felt strongly that I should, so I did and I went to St Luke's.  My eye thing recurred but the cool part was that for the next week, the doctor would have been gone on vacation, so if I would have disobeyed the prayer and waited until my eye went black, I would have been screwed!  I thought it was a cool experience of personal revelation.  

We found a lot of cool new families this week.  One is the Orara family.  The husband is less active and they have 5 kids.  But the coolest thing happened with Lora Bell.  I knew that she was moving to Las Pinas, but before I got transferred, I forgot to get her number off of our phone.  But one day, Elder Fawson was walking in their area and this girl came up to them and said that she was a member and she just moved.  Elder Fawson asked who it was that taught her and she said Elder Zesiger.  Elder Fawson was like "he's my kabahay!"  So I'll go visit her when we go on exchanges!  It's so cool to see how many miracles are connected to her, Heavenly Father really wants her back in the church. haha

I knew it would be a sister haha.

An experience written to Shelby...

On Tuesday, we got punted, which means that no one wanted to hear from us except a couple people.  This happens to missionaries a lot, but not to me.  It was my first time in 6 months and it made me feel sad.  I was getting self conscious and my Tagalog totally died and I was making so many mistakes.  I think Heavenly Father was trying to humble me.  When we got back home, I felt terrible, I knelt down and prayed really hard.  I pleaded with God to give us a good day.  I just felt so bad.  Before we went out of Wednesday, I did practice teaching with Elder Cortez and I still couldn't speak Tagalog, I didn't even want to go out, but I had faith in my prayer.  We ended up having my best day of my mission.  We got 10 new investigators, 12 lessons and like 8 new baptismal dates, my Tagalog was back to normal and we had a cool day.  This week, I've gotten a lot stronger testimony of prayer.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

But as I was praying, I felt that right now is my time to be humble, teachable, and learn.

Letter to Mom...

It was very sad saying goodbye to all my friends and converts in Santa Mesa.  I cried a lot hahaha.  As I was leaving the house on Wednesday morning, I was met by all the the single adults who were waiting outside of our apartment to say goodbye, they had all written me letters.  It was cool haha.

Elder Cortez is my new companion and his mannerisms are exactly like Elder Arnejo's haha it's weird!  But he is an amazing teacher!  Elder Fawson is my kabahay (room mate) haha so that's funny, he is training and a district leader, so it is fun to catch up with him.   We have one of the best wards in the mission!  The coordination meeting is crazy!  Everyone comes and gives referrals and works with us everyday! I love it!  Thank you so much for all of the good that you are doing for the mission.  I'm proud to have the best mission mom in the world.  

As I listened to Elder Nattress's talk and I am so grateful to have you as a mom.  Even though we didn't read the Book of Mormon every morning, which we should have done and you should start now hahaha, I will never fall away because of your love, I know that this church is true and I know that our family will be together forever.  I love you.

Elder Zesiger and Elder Fawson.  They were companions in the MTC and are roommates now.  I think Elder Fawson is 7ft tall!

Letter to Dad...
It's pretty fun, I feel like I don't know that much haha, but all of the (conference) talks were about how the Lord qualifies who he calls.  In our zone, there are 19 missionaries and 3 districts.  Elder Fawson is one of our district leaders and my roommate haha, so that's fun.  Elder Cortez is pretty cool, he is actually exactly like Elder Arnejo haha, and it feels weird to be a junior companion again so I guess I need to learn to be more humble again.  I was kind of confused what my purpose was here, whether it was to change everything and make higher goals, because the zone goals are pretty low right now as we are the lowest baptizing zone in the mission at 3 a month haha, which is less than Elder Davis and I averaged in just our companionship.  But as I was praying, I felt that right now is my time to be humble, teachable, and learn, and then when I have a better understanding in a couple of weeks, I can begin building this zone into the best in the mission, but right now I received the answer that my job is to learn from Elder Cortez.

We have some pretty cool investigators here.  What are some ways that you inspired your zone?  I have been trying to get to know everyone personally by getting to know their conversion stories, it is really fun, but many of them have said that they don't think that it is possible to hit the high numbers like 30 lessons a week.  Right now, the high goal in our zone is 20 a week, I think that is one thing I'm going to change, but what is one way that I can help them believe in themselves?

I loved conference, especially Elder Rasband's talk about how we have to remember our spiritual experiences, especially in times of trial.  Sometimes as I read my journal about people being healed and miracles happening I am tempted to think that they were just coincidences, but I am super glad for that talk as an assurance that they are not.  I am super glad for my new calling that it is kind of hard, I was getting kind of comfortable in Santa Mesa, haha although I'll love it forever, it was super sad saying goodbye to the converts. 

I love being a missionary dad, thanks for helping raise me in the church and always being the best example for me.  I know for my self that Jesus Christ is the son of god, our Savior, and our way back to a loving Heavenly Father.

Elder Zesiger

Monday, October 3, 2016

Elder Zesiger is going to miss the Santa Mesa area!

Letter to Dad....
 We had a really fun week,  we had a couple more baptisms and an MTC exchange, but the coolest part was that I saw my MTC teacher, Brother Caling, again for the first time since Dec 1 haha it was awesome!  My new area I will be leading is the Paranaque West Zone, it's the farthest zone from everything in the mission besides Palawan, it borders the Cavite mission.  I'm going to miss Elder Davis though, we ended up getting 12 baptisms in his training which is one a week, so that was fun. 
My MTC teacher Elder Caling 

One cool thing that happened this week was just during studies.  We were watching all of the preach my gospel movies for Elder Davis's training and all of the missionaries were bearing their testimonies on how they knew that everything was true and how they were close to Heavenly Father and I thought to myself that I felt closer to Heavenly Father back when I was having a really hard time and relying on him really hard.  But now that I've just been having success and everything is going good, I didn't feel like I was as close and that made me kind of sad.  I was wondering how I could be close, and have a fun life haha and not have to choose one or the other.  I started reading in my scriptures and found that verse that you sent me a while ago in Due. 31:6, that was pretty cool, so then I ended study with a prayer and when I opened my eyes, I saw my preach my gospel on my desk and I felt a strong prompting that I needed to put it in my bag, I didn't know why because I never bring it with me, but I opened my bag anyway,  when I did I found a referral that we were going to visit but we lost.  As I thought about the experience I realized that if I wasn't close to Heavenly Father, then I wouldn't receive promptings like that.  As I was pondering this, the words popped into my head, "I am with thee".  It was cool, that hasn't happened for awhile.

Letter to Mom....
I'm getting transferred to lead the Paranaque west zone.  It's a pretty rich area.  It'll be fun haha.  I might be roommates with Elder Fawson because I think he's one of my district leaders hahaha.

My cool story for you is about Fernando Cordero and Cocay.  Fernando was less active for a very long time.  He didn't think that he could ever go to church because of his work.  His wife, Rissa, would never go either because he wasn't there.  Exactly 5 weeks ago, Rissa got really sick.  She promised Heavenly Father that if her pain would go away, she would go to church every day for the rest of her life.  The pain immediately went away and she knew she had to go.  Every week since, they have been there, and the miracle happened just in time for Cocay to get baptized right before I transferred.  Their small food table is now very successful and money is not much of a problem.  I know that Heavenly Father knows his children and he knows how to bring them back to church.  Fernando got worthy and it was so amazing to see him baptize Cocay, after teaching him for almost 6 months!  I love being a missionary haha.

The next two days will be sad and a lot of goodbyes haha, I'm still not good at those.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

I love being a missionary so much, and all of the pain that I had to endure at the beginning was all worth it for how I feel now.

Letter to Mom... 
Ya my shoes are size ten, they have holes in the bottom haha, but my brown ones are still like brand new.  I bought some rubber shoes, but Elder Gibson accidentally took them to Palawan, so they're gone haha.  I got some packages with Oreos and cinnamon toast crunch and grandmas temple one! Thanks they're awesome and everyone in the mission envies me.  During zone conference  I learned a lot about gratitude and I noticed that everyone that I think is really cool, has gratitude as one of their main attributes, so I'm going to build myself into a grateful person.  President also stopped us and congratulated us for having one of the most on fire areas in the mission.  It was cool since it was dead before.  
One funny thing that happened was in sacrament meeting. I was assigned to give the benediction, but I am still in the habit of writing down my blessings in my planner like you said , so I was doing that and then I got distracted and just started drawing Def Leopard and Van Halen logos and all of the sudden, I noticed that everyone was silent.  I was like, "whats going on?"  Then I heard the sister missionaries like "Elder Zesiger!"  I was like "oh crap!"  Then I went up and said the prayer hahaha, but it was a good prayer.

The baptism went well, I'll send pictures.  One of the coolest things is that they were both fathers that we had already baptized their families, but they were both over coming a cigarette addiction, we got them both married too haha.  We have another wedding on the 24th, thanks to Sister Joy, I can plan weddings now, so my wife is lucky.  

We had MTC exchanges and I took out 2 new elders and that was really fun.

I love you mom you are the best mom ever and I owe you a lot, I'll send you pictures:)

Elder Zesiger

We had a great week here.  I had a super cool experience while sitting in sacrament yesterday.  In the scriptures, Ammon rejoices when he sees his converts and the love that they have for one another.  As I watched our investigator, Eunice who will be baptized this Saturday, help our investigator, Roberto who will be baptized on the 1st, know where to sit and explain to him what was going on at church, I felt that feeling.  She is also paying a large portion of his wedding costs, just so that he can get baptized and experience the joy that she herself hasn't even fully experienced yet.  I felt it as I watched Raizo and John Ralph pass the sacrament together, to me, and to their families, and to their friends who are not yet baptized but soon will be passing with them.  I have felt it as the Maglaque family faithfully pays their tithing even though they don't know where their next pay check will come from.  I've felt it as I see Lito, going to church and having fun reading and sharing from the Book of Mormon.  I've felt it as the Totanez family offers to wash our clothes and give us gifts and always let me borrow their umbrella when I'm too forgetful to bring mine haha, even though they don't have much to spare either.  I love being a missionary so much, and all of the pain that I had to endure at the beginning was all worth it for how I feel now.

I love you dad, I love my mission, I am so grateful for all that I have :) and will have (trans am)! haha 

 (Elder Zesiger's dad told him he'd finish restoring his 1976 Trans Am while he is on his mission)

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

I got a whopper with fries and it was an amazing moment!

From letter to Mom...

I had a great week.  One thing that was amazing is that I got Costco pizza!  There is a company here called S&R which is the exact same as Costco.  But you cant go in without a membership card, even for the food.  Elder Davis and I were at the doctors for my eye and I was asking him if there was a way that we could get in, and he was like " you can just take my card".  We took it and snuck in and it was the best food in the world!

I'm doing good, I finally made that fettuccine alfredo that you sent me, but I used rotten milk, so it didn't taste that good haha.  We've got some more baptisms coming up next week, I'll send you the picture of the ones from last week.  We have zone conference coming up this week, so that'll be awesome.  I can't believe how fast time is going, after September ends, Elder Davis's training will already be over and I'll probably get transferred cuz I'll be 6 months in the area haha.

From letter to Dad...
Hey Dad, this week was really fun.  While we were near the hospital in Makati, I saw a Lambo gallardo, Ferrari 488, and a Porche 911 carrera s all in a row, all red.  It was the sickest thing that I've ever seen haha.  Elder Davis doesn't care about cars, so he didn't know what they were, but it was sick!  Tell mom that my eye is good, it just attacked again, but I just take eye drops and it goes away.  When it attacks everything goes black, but it doesn't hurt.

We have an investigator named L*, that we oymed in the rain about a month ago.  When we found him, he had long pink hair, girly clothes, and was addicted to cocain and alcohol.  Yesterday was the first time that he has been to church.  His hair is now black and short.  He is clean off of drugs (mainly because the police will shoot him on sight if he does any hahaha)  He is good on alcohol and the whole word of wisdom.  He is reading the Book of Mormon and when we asked him how his reading was, he told us the story of how Nephi got the plates in crazy detail, even quoting Nephi in a couple of parts.  If everything goes perfect, he can be baptized before I transfer out of the area.  I really want that to happen haha.

From Coby's letter....
The other day in the rich part of Makati, I saw a Lamborghini, Ferrari and Porsche all in a row, but in our area I see like 700 homeless kids sleeping on the side of the street on little pieces of cardboard, its kinda crazy and sad.  Right after this, we are going to go to a black market and buy Shelby and birthday present hahaha.

From Caden's letter....
I got to eat Burger King this week!  Usually I just eat pork and rice every single day, but on Thursday, we were going to the doctor to check on my eye cuz it went black again.  But the taxi driver took us about 2 hrs in the wrong direction, we were like way into Quezon City out of the mission boundaries.  On our way back, I saw the Burger King and I was like "holy crap!  take us to the drive thru!"  I got a whopper with fries and it was an amazing moment.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Elder Davis and I always walk through floods and like apocalypse-like rain and sing hymns, it's fun!

Mom asked if I had a fever, I kind of always have a cold cuz it's rainy season and the rain is acid rain cuz the air is really dirty so it makes everyone sick. haha But I'm ok it's a funny memory, Elder Davis and I always walk through floods and like apocalypse-like rain and sing hymns, it's fun!  

Here's a cool spiritual story with this guy named Roberto.  He is homeless and he lives in his tricycle.  Yesterday, he just came to church for the second time by himself, even though it is very hard for him to pay (maybe for transportation?).  One time, it started raining really bad, so I put my arm around him and helped him through the rain with my umbrella.  I have a really small umbrella so I think that's why I'm sick, cuz I got wet haha.  When my arm was around him, and I felt his little tiny bony shoulders, I felt the Spirit and how Heavenly Father was proud that we were helping him:) 

This week was really fun!  Elder Gibson got transferred to Narra, Palawan, so that was sad, but on the bright side, I am now a Godfather, by Filipino law hahahaha.  We helped the Maglaque family get married before their baptism and they didn't have enough people there, so I was one of the witnesses hahaha.  The priest was like "sa mata ng diyos, Cole Craig Zesiger and espiritual na magulang ninyo"  which means, "in the eyes of God, Cole Craig Zesiger is your spiritual father."  hahaha it was hilarious!  Their baptism was fun, Brother Maglaque will be baptized this September 10th, but May and Trina were also baptized.  Do you remember Kyla Gamido?  We baptized her in June and now we finally baptized her sisters, now we just need to baptize their parents hahaha.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Short post for my 10 month mark!

My experience for you this week is about L*.  After Elder Magno got transferred, I kinda forgot where her house was, but last Thursday, I felt a prompting that we needed to visit her and I immediately remembered where her house was, not immediately , but as I walked, everything became clear the closer we got, until we arrived.  She is never there on weekdays because she goes to work at 6pm, until morning, and she just sleeps at home until then, but this day, her dog woke her up an hour early, right as we arrived.  She was super happy to see us, she told us that she has been diagnosed with cancer and that the doctors only gave her 2 years to live.  She's only 32 years old. We shared with her a message, then gave her a blessing.  I tried to pray really hard before, so I wouldn't just try to heal her if it was not Heavenly Father's will.  But as I was blessing her, I told her that she would be healed, that she would be able to have kids and raise them in the church like she has always wanted to.  As I was blessing her, I felt the spirit tingling through me super strong.  Please pray for her.  She is less active, but she has stronger faith than most members, she just made some mistakes earlier in her life.

Also, I saw the scariest thing that I have ever seen in my life this week.  Over the last 2 weeks, every night before I go to bed, I have seen at least 2 cockroaches on my bed, but I've just been too tired to care, so I have just swept them off and went to sleep.  A couple of days ago, we were spraying the house with poison to kill our enemies.  I lifted up my mattress and was horrified to see a nest of at least 50 to 60 cockroaches on my bed.  I have been sleeping with them for I don't even know how long haha, it's terrifying.  But it's still fun and I love it here haha!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Sometimes the Lord with let us fail to teach us lessons

Letter to Dad....
I had my interview with President and while we were talking, he shared something awesome.  I told him about the baptism and then the wedding and then the district activity and how for 3 days nothing went right haha and this is what he said.  "Sometimes the Lord with let us fail to teach us lessons."  He said that he sees it all the time as a mission president, how the Lord sometimes will put two missionaries in an area together and it just destroys the area, over time, President has learned that the Lord does this to teach the individual missionaries.  
Elder Zesiger's birthday party!
I saw an example of this at church yesterday.  For the last couple weeks we have done really good with having investigators at church and we were expecting it to double.  Saturday night, we taught this less active named Brother Fernando and he hasn't been to church in about 3 months but he has really strong faith.  His whole family also depends on him as they will not go to church without him.  But because it rained so much earlier in the week, he wasn't going to hit his delivery quota and he was going to have to work on Sunday as a result, unless it rained.  It did rain and he came to church.  Because it rained, some of our investigators were not able to come, but only the ones that are already sure and missing one Sunday won't really hurt them.  It was just interesting to see Heavenly Father sacrifice something, for something more important.

Not the best picture but he wanted to show that he made his cake!
Other than that, I had a hot shower cuz I boiled some water, I also played a lot of yu gi oh this week. Oh ya and president said something cool.  He said I will probably never serve in Palawan, so that was sad but he told me that there are no such things as once in a life time experiences.  After 20 years he was able to visit his mission again with his whole family.  They had a lot of fun, but at the end he was sad cuz he knew that they were too poor to ever return.  He has now been back over 20 times.  He said that I have the capacity to do anything in this life, and that I will.
Being a missionary is fun haha I love you!
Letter to Mom...
  We had a super rainy week, 3 of the days had floods up to our shins haha.  And then our water got shut off in our house so we have been showering and drinking with the 72 hour kit water haha which doesn't work that well.  But I did have the best shower of my mission 2 days ago.  I boiled 2 pots of water and then poured them on myself and had my first hot shower in 9 months, it was amazing!

I also got back into YU-GI-OH and I've been playing with Elder Gibson after planning and stuff haha, it's still sick!

We've had a lot of people to church for the last 3 weeks and the end of August and the first of September will have a lot of baptisms.  It's pretty cool to see cuz since me and my companion are both trying to be obedient now, there are a ton of miracles in the area every day.

Thanks for the socks!
I love you mom, I also had an interview with President but I'll say more of that to dad, but thank you for being the best mom ever!

Monday, August 1, 2016

Letter to Mom...

No the days have been good, it is pretty stressful a lot of the time now cuz I have to do everything, but its kinda fun.  I just need socks, but only black and grey and blue cuz all the crazy ones you send are bawal (against the rules) haha!  Mac and cheese is good, I still have my spaghetti sauce cuz beef is hard to get, but protein bars and cereal are amazing!  I haven't gotten the birthday one yet, but I'm going to the office on Wednesday  so hopefully its there!  (I asked him for package requests.)

Here's a story for Coby:  Our house is always full of cockroaches so last Monday, we decided to see how many we could kill.  We destroyed their hiding places and made a big pool of fire in the middle of the room (sounds safe?!!), then we got a broom and when they would run, we swept them in, we probably killed about 250 haha, but now they are all back again.:( hahahaha

Here's a story for you:  We have an investigator named Eunice and she has been reading the Book of Mormon but didn't know that it was true, she said that she would have to finish the whole book first.  I'm not that patient so I told her that we were going to pray right there, she prayed and asked if it was and then when she was done, we asked how she felt.  She said she felt like she needed to share it with all her friends.  We shared 1 Nephi 8:12 and how Lehi felt the same way.  Then we asked "so is it true?"  she said "yes"  it was kinda simple, but it was cool.

Here's a stressful story.  On Saturday morning at 6 am we woke up to help Wendel and Shane get married, we got all ready and then called Sister Joy for help, the only problem was that she thought it was on Wednesday, but she said to go to the city hall anyway and ask, so we did.  The only problem was that there were 3 city halls and it wasn't until the 3rd one that we actually found it.  When we finally got to the lawyers house, he wasn't there, he was out playing tennis. Keep in mind that Shane and Wendel's whole families were following us around , all depending on me to make it happen.  Some had come from far away.  They were like murmuring in the back too like wondering if the wedding would start.  I called the lawyer and he came and it was awesome though, it was such a good feeling when it was over, and they were all very happy:)

Letter to Dad....
 My week was really fun too, but I am realizing the stress of being the leader.  For the baptism and the wedding, it like all depends on me and everyone just looks to me for everything, it's hard!  In sacrament they announced the baptism for 4pm, but Elder Davis didn't understand so he told Shane to be there at 5pm.  It was very stressful when they were an hour late and the bishop and the ward mission leader were freaking out at me haha.  

We are seeing a lot of miracles.  We just got a referral of a family that is ready to be baptized on Aug 20, we just have to get them married, so that's sick!  The language is easy now, but what are some things you think I could do to lead better?  I've been studying leaders in the scriptures a lot too.

I got to interview someone and then baptize them yesterday that has over come a lot of sins, it was really, really awesome!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

I had the thought come into my head that I needed to see him as Heavenly Father does.

Letter to Mom...
I asked about his companion....  Elder Davis is awesome haha he's pretty fun.  He read all the books that I read before my mission and he said that he wants to start a business with me haha.  I'm excited to see the house when I get home, with my trans am parked in front, then I will leave for about 5 hours and drive and listen to music, and it'll be sick.  Raizo's friends name is John Ralph, he is getting baptized on Saturday and some others too!

I've got a lot of stories again.  The one I have for you is about a guy that we are going to baptize.  Last night, we went to May and Trina, and Kyla's house to teach them, but we didn't have a third male so we couldn't cuz that's like a mission rule.  Then I was like, May where is your guy friend, he's never doing anything right?  Then all of the sudden, he walks in and cuz he was hungry and needed food, so we asked him to sit in the lesson.  We read the Book of Mormon and he was participating a lot.  His name in Lito.  While he was participating, I had the thought come into my head that I needed to see him as Heavenly Father does.  As I looked at him, with his pink hair, and thought about how he just lives in his tricycle outside in the rain, I had a vision of how the gospel could bless him.  At the end of our lesson, he asked if he could start coming regularly.  I asked him why he wanted to.  He said that what he wants is a beautiful wife and a son, but he doesn't know how.  We testified to him that the atonement could fix all of his problems and that his dream could come true.  He accepted a baptismal date for September 3rd.  As he prayed at the end of the lesson, he asked Heavenly Father for strength to overcome his challenges and thanked Him for the opportunity to be "counted among us".  It was really cool, I'm really excited for him haha.

I love you guys a ton, more than I can express in email.  The time is going too fast, so tell dad to get the trans am done.  Thanks for the advice about how to be an effective relief society president, it is working! haha

Letter to Dad...
I had one of the coolest experiences ever yesterday!  About a week ago, we oymed (talk to) this lady and found out that she was less active, so we invited her to church and then, unexpectedly she came! haha  So yesterday, we went back to teach her but she was busy so we started talking to her husband, Roberto.  He was in an accident a little while ago and cannot walk, so he just sits in his house all the time and watches tv.  He was never baptized.  We asked him if we could teach him, but he said no cuz he was busy watching tv.  So we looked around the house and saw a lot of statues of Jesus, so we talked about who Jesus was to him and we found out that he has a really strong testimony of Christ and of prayer, his doctrine was a little messed up, but his testimony was pure.  I remembered the "Challenging and Testifying Missionary" and testified that we were sent of Jesus Christ here to bring a message because He loves him and wants him in his church.  Roberto turned the tv off and said that he wanted to hear.  We taught him powerfully and the Spirit was there.  We challenged him for baptism and he accepted.  At the end of the lesson, we asked him to pray.  He began to pray, silently but powerfully, and didn't stop for about 7 minutes.  Since the spirit was so strong, I started praying that he could feel the truthfulness of our message as he prayed and as I pleaded with the Lord, this scripture popped into my head, "many are kept from the truth, only because they know not where to find it." It was cool!  As he opened his eyes from his long and fervent prayer, I asked Roberto if he was able to ask if our message was true.  He paused and didn't speak for about a minute, then he spoke.  "I have been praying to God for the longest time that he would send a prophet to show me the way, and I know that he sent you."  It was so awesome.  He is very excited for us to come back.  haha I love being a missionary.

A story he sent to Caden...

We met this guy named Nixon that lives close to Totanes and he said that we could teach him.  As we started to get to know him, we found out that he does not believe in God.  We gave him a Book of Mormon and told him to read Alma 32, about faith.  When we got back, he hadn't read, so we just read with him.  The Spirit was strong the whole time.  At the end we asked him how he felt and he said that it sounded like it was talking to him haha.  We asked him to pray, which is not something that he does that often, and he reluctantly said yes.  He said a short, but fervent pray to his Father in heaven.  We asked him how he felt.  He said that he didn't know haha, it felt weird, but really good and he didn't know what it was.  We testified that it was all true, and as we left, he was reading the Book of Mormon.  Haha being a missionary is fun!