Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Final Post - Chris' Homecoming!

Elder Gagnon landed safely in Montreal at 9:59 p.m. on Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013 after a long flight home from the Philippines. Many thanks to everyone who supported him with letters, thoughts and prayers over the last two years and thanks also to those who came out to the airport on the coldest day of the year to welcome him home! God Bless!

Friday, January 18, 2013

January 14th, 2013 - Last email home...

Hello family! I can't believe this is my last email home. Time has gone so fast and I'm on my last week of missionary work in the Philippines. It's been an amazing two years and I'm going to miss everything so much. I have really loved the work so much! Unfortunately Chris' baptism will not go through on the 19th. It had to be moved to the 26th because they have to attend a wedding of a friend. So I won't be having anymore baptisms in Gen.Trias, but that's ok. I feel really fine knowing that I did my best here for my last two transfers. This has probably been my favorite area though. I'm kind of sad that I didn't get to stay here longer. Last week we were able to find a lot more investigators that are really great. We weren't able to teach Albao because they have been away. Brother Rojas, Brother Don, and Brother Padayao all received callings. It's just been a few small responsibilities but it still requires them to help out the church. They are all now preparing to receive the Melchizedek priesthood for the next stake conference! Brother Bejucos wasn't able to attend church yesterday so he hasn't received the Aaronic priesthood yet, but he will this Sunday. We also got a new ward mission leader last Sunday who will help out the work soooooo much. We were really happy about that! :D Things are going great in General Trias. Tonight we have a zone activity so that will be fun. I'm excited to come home in a week. Haha. Well I can't believe my 2 years is up. I have learned a lot about myself. President Stucki said once that "A lot of missionaries go on missions to find themselves, but they never will find themselves until they lose themselves. That has been fulfilled on my mission. As I have learned more about the Savior and his Gospel and have gotten lost in the service I also learned even more about myself. I've actually thought about it a lot and it's kind of sad because it's really only 2 years where we can wear the name tag and be called Elder/Sister ________. I testify that it is that greatest calling there is, next to being a father or mother. It is also the most important thing we can do on this earth, next to building an eternal family. One of the greatest things about missionary work is the time we get in the morning to study. It wasn't on my mission where I learned how to study the scriptures, but it was on my mission where I learned to "Feast upon the words of Christ." I don't think I ever had a doubt that the church was true, but it was on my mission where I became even more converted to the Gospel and developed an even greater love for the Lord. I really do love Him. I would just like to testify that Jesus Christ is our Elder Brother, and our Savior and Master. I testify that he lives and that this is his church. I know the Gospel is true and that it can change people. I have seen it throughout my mission and it really is the greatest thing ever. Thank you to everyone who helped me come out. It really has been the best two years. Mahal ko po kayo. Elder Gagnon P.S: See ya soon!

Happy New Year!!

Hello Family! Happy New Year! Last week was good in General Trias, we had a few dinner appointments. We had one on New Years Eve with the stake president and that went really well. We had to be in though at 6pm so we just went home that night and played Monopoly. There was actually an old board that someone left at our house a while ago, so we played that. Then I also slept for awhile and that was about it! haha. There were fireworks but it wasn't like Palawan. Palawan was a lot crazier! Hehe. We weren't able to get back to a lot of the people that we wanted to go back to though. And I'm not sure I will have another baptism on my mission now... We will have to see we might have two on the 19th but it's not for sure yet. We might have Brother Chris and Brother Lloyd. We just want to be 100% sure that they are both ready to be baptized and have testimonies and everything. :D Something else that was kool was I got to see L.A.(From Makati 2nd) last week, he was visiting family here in Gen.Trias and he came to church here as well which was really kool. We also had an exchange, so I worked with my batch, Elder Teodoro in my area. It was a good exchange. Oh and something else that's really good is Brother Bejucos finally got confirmed! He was away in Manila for a while right after he got baptized and wasn't able to get confirmed until last Sunday, but now he is confirmed and everything is great! I also bore my testimony last Sunday in church. I'm not gonna lie... I cried....A lot....Haha. It was actually really cool though, I was sitting right behind Brother Bejucos after he got confirmed and he turned around and looked at me and said "I really feel like I should go up." So I told him that I would go up with him and he would bear his testimony first, then I would. So he did and did an awesome job! Then I went and just couldn't help but cry because it was the last time I would be here for a fast and testimony meeting. It was pretty sad. I'm really going to miss the mission soooo much. I have loved it a lot and I'm going to miss helping others become closer to Christ. We also had a ZL/DLC which was pretty much a ZLC with all the district leaders there. Elder Comish is super funny. He actually packed his bags and left them at the mission home at the ZLC. It was pretty funny. Haha. He seems pretty excited to go home in a funny kind of way. Elder Morris is also excited. Haha. Anyways, I need to copy a lot of pics on to my USB so I gotta go.... Love ya! Have a great week! :D Elder Gagnon

January 30th, 2012

Christmas with Brother Chris and Sister Angel
Christmas at Sister Judith's
Hello Everyone! I can't believe this is my 3rd to last email home! Haha. Actually starting this week I started to get a little bit excited for coming home. I'm not trunky or anything, I'm still going to go out working really hard but I would be lying if I said it's starting to get hard to not think about home. Last week was a bit difficult. We had a great temple tour. The Rojas family came and loved it. We all had a really great time. Brother Arnie and his son who is 12 received the priesthood last week. It was really great. Sister Rojas was there when they were ordained and she was in tears. Last Sunday we had a combined lesson with the R.S and E.Q and the bishopric called on people to bear testimony and share experiences. They called on Sister Rojas. She was just really really happy that her husband came into the church and that he is so active. She said it was amazing because she has been a member for almost 30 years and she has been less-active for the last 15 and now she is back. After Brother Rojas was ordained she tapped me on the shoulder and just said "Thank you so much Elder." It's been definitely one of the biggest highlights of my mission helping the Rojas family progress in the Gospel. I really just love them so much and want the best for them. The Albao unfortunately didn't come to church last week, well sister did, but brother didn't. She was actually the only investigator who came to church. So we have to move their baptism back again, which is too bad. But they are also really amazing. Sister is ready for baptism, but we would rather have her baptized with Brother. They should be ready in February. :D We also have Brother Chris, who is still doing great! He will be ready for January 19th. He is going to be ready for that date. We just have to make sure he is ready for his interview. :D Then we also have a few potentials, we actually found a huge family of 14, the Villagomez family. Except one of them is already a member, the father is working in another country and 2 of them are under 8. So we can only baptize 9 of them.... They all seem really interested. My goal is to get all 14 of them at church before I go home and prepare them for baptism the best we can. :D We also have many more potentials we can go to. :D Um I'm not sure who got all competitive, I would guess Patrick Carpenter, but I'm not sure. Haha. Christmas was really good. We went to Mall of Asia last Wednesday and had fun there, we also had dinner with Sister Judith and her family. She has a husband she wants us to teach that isn't a member, his name is Jojo. Then we also had Sister Angel and Brother Chris (our baptism Jan. 19th) on the 25th of December. I would send pictures, but it really takes too long to. But think about it, in 23 days I get to show you all the pictures I took on my mission! So that will be great! Anyways I have to go now! I hope you guys have a great day! Take Care! :D Love you! Elder Gangnam style (that's what everyone calls me now!)