Sunday, March 6, 2016

I Have Been Changed For Good

18 months. 4 areas. 10 companions. 13 transfer days. 3 Skype calls home. 16 baptisms. Tears. Laughs. Smiles. Sicknesses. Rejections. Holidays. P-days. Packages from home. Golden investigators. Walking miles. Eating tons. Learning 3 dialects. All in the service of God. I will never forget, nor will I ever regret these last 18 months I've had to serve our Heavenly Father here in the Philippines. Wearing the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ over my heart every day has been a privilege and words can not begin to express how grateful I am for the opportunity I had to serve Him.

Elder Renlund said in the last General Conference, "My call gives ample evidence to the truthfulness of the Lord’s statement early in this dispensation: "That the fulness of my gospel might be proclaimed by the weak and the simple unto the ends of the world. I am one of those weak and simple." I have felt the Lord work through me throughout the last 18 months as I am also one of those weak and simple. I never could have spoken these languages, shared the gospel, and experience the things I did if it wasn't for the Lord working through me. He didn't call me to serve here because of anything I did, He called me to the Philippines Tacloban mission because He knew what I needed to learn and the people I needed to meet. I also am so thankful that Heavenly Father not only assigned me to an amazing mission, but also gave me and amazing Mission President, President Maurer and his wife, Sister Maurer. They have been with me every step of the way and I am so blessed to know them and have them as a part of my life.

I received a letter from one of my recent converts and she said in her letter, "God gave me you Sister Wilde" Tears came to my eyes when I read that line and it reminded me that God really does place people in our lives to strengthen, help, and uplift us. I think of my family, leaders and the people back at home and how they helped me get to where I am today. I then think of the people here in the Philippines. The Filipino people are the most hospitable, kind, loving, and humble people I have ever met. I never felt homesick because their arms were always open to me to become part of their family. My companions included! Sister Skey taught me to laugh and love the people. Sister Talataina taught me to never give up learning the language. Sister Pui taught me it's okay to be bold, but not overbearing. Sister Minoza taught me to love everyone no matter what. Sister Dumale was an amazing example to me of diligence and hard work. Sister Pangilinan taught me to forgive and forget. Sister Rodrigo was an amazing teacher of how to find people to teach. Sister Cailing taught me to never give up. Sister Lopez was a great example of looking at trials as a blessing. And Sister Culangan taught me to endure to the end, to finish strong.

I am going to miss the wet hugs after coming out of the baptismal font. I will miss reading the Book of Mormon with an investigator family and seeing a new light come into their lives. I will miss the packages, letters, and emails from you. I will miss the people. I will miss my companions as well as the other missionaries I served with who became my lifelong friends. I am really going to miss it all!

I know Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. He loves us. This is truly His church and I know through Joseph Smith the Gospel was restored. The Book of Mormon is true. Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God and if we hearken unto his words, we will make it back to live with our Father in Heaven and Savior Jesus Christ.

Thank you for the support and love you all gave to me throughout my mission. I am truly blessed. Words can't begin to express how much gratitude and love I feel at this time! I love you all.

Sister Wilde

I'm not going to send pictures because you will see my face on Thursday ;) 

Monday, February 29, 2016

Till we meet again!

Hello Family!

Here are some of the thoughts that are going through my mind. Next week?!? Is this real?! Could this be any crazier!? I am somewhat in denial! Time has just gone by so fast!! It doesn’t even seem real that my time here is coming to end. Sister Culangan and I are taking in every minute we have left to be with these people and share the gospel. It is bitter sweet!

This week was a pretty punted week though! We started to get a little frustrated because we were prepared and ready to teach these people and find people to teach but it seemed almost impossible! We walked for hours in pouring rain then blistering heat then pouring rain again only to be punted. But while walking I remembered a quote by M. Russell Ballard, "It is impossible to fail if you do your best and are on the Lords errand." It's true! Even though we were punted and nobody would accept us we were trying and that is what matters! So even though we may feel we aren't good enough or we can't accomplish anything, we can! Heavenly Father is never going to let us fail if we do what He asks. He will help us and we can accomplish great things.

Sunny and Marita are going through so many challenges right now. They have always struggled financially but have always put aside money every day so they could have money to get to church. Well Marita has been feeling very sick and they don't have money for her to go to the doctors because their baby ended up getting sick too and they had no food and no milk for their baby. But how amazing it was to see them walk through the chapel doors on Sunday morning in their best clothes because they know if they put the Lord first, He will help them. It is people like Sunny and Marita who inspire me to be better and I know they are going to make amazing members of the church someday. I love them!

At church yesterday everyone kept teasing us how we only have 1 week left. They enjoy teasing us because they are returned missionaries and know how we feel, it's hard to leave! They then announced in Sacrament meeting, "Sister Wilde and Sister Culangan are going home really soon and so we would like to invite everyone to their farewell party on March 5th at 6pm. It will be combined ward 1 and ward 2." Say what?? They are throwing us a farewell party. They are seriously the sweetest. (I had to laugh that they announced it at the pulpit.) I am going to miss these people like crazy!!!!

I love you all, see you soon!

Sister Wilde

p.s. Mom- don't get too trunky ;)

Sunday fun :)

My companions on Sunday :)
Outback in the Philippines. SO GOOD. The members love us ;)
Can you say trunky? Haha no! We were just preparing our things last p-day and had to take a picture! It is clean now :)
I really appreciate my district leaders Pinterest white boards during district meeting.
I love Sheila!!
Even though we were punted and tired, we still smile because we are on the Lord's errand!
I love teaching Filipinos about s'mores :)
Last p-day means play basketball! Don't mean to brag but I won all 3 games of speed. How? Not sure, but I said it is because I am not trunky ;) Elder Batchelder (yes that is his name) is in a chair because he sprained his ankle really bad! Surprised it's not me?

Justine's not too trunky mom here. I feel like I have been on an emotional roller coaster these last few weeks as we get ready for our sweet girl to come home and as we prepare to send our son on his mission. I am so excited to have her home and can't wait to hug her and hear all about her experiences, but my heart is also breaking for her knowing how hard this is going to be to leave the people that she has come to love so much. The Philippines and people there will forever have a special place in her heart! So tonight when cute little Sister in Justine's mission tagged me in a post on FB I found myself crying as I read her sweet words. Words can not even begin to express how grateful I am that this girl chose to serve a mission. We have all been blessed beyond measure because of it. Heavenly Father is mindful of His children and knows who we need and where we are needed.
My most favorite Sister Missionary assigned at Ormoc 1st Ward!
She was so funny. Yeah! .😊😊
She was beautiful inside and out! .💘💘
I Love this girl.I really love working with her!
I'll gonna miss her when she'll gonna
go back to her True Home at Utah. cry emoticon
But I'm so much grateful that I meet this Extraordinary Woman.
I'll Cherish those happy moments with you smile emoticon
I hope we'll meet again someday. 😂😄😜
heart emoticon SISTER ORTIZA

Monday, February 22, 2016

They are like my family!

 Hello my dear family and friends! How is everyone doing? Things are really great and really, really emotional over here! As the time is getting closer for me to return home, I can't hold back the tears! Especially when teaching and spending time with these people. They are like my family! The most common thing I keep hearing is, "Sister Wilde, it's like you are from here. You've been here in Ormoc so long!" And this week really proved it as we walked through the streets and rode on tricycles random people say, "Hello Sister Wilde!! How are you?!" And they are people who I have been able to talk to about their families and invite to church as well as give them pamphlets. They truly have become my friends here and I love it! (I also had a nightmare my family forgot to get me at the airport so please don't forget me. Hahaha.)

This week there has been a lot of walking. My whole mission has been a lot of walking but this is really A LOT because covering 2 areas is actually harder than we thought, but despite the challenge, we love it and are learning so much! We worked in Alta Vista which is part of my current area (ward 1) and the people there are really progressing and ready to receive the gospel! We have one new investigator, Rhemehea, who has so many questions which makes for a really awesome lesson. We have invited her to church but she said she wants us to teach her a little bit more before she commits to come so we can't wait to go back this week.

We visited Sister Peregrino this week (one of my most favorite people in the world) and she is doing great! She totally made me cry and said she won't come to church my last Sunday because she might make a scene sobbing her eyes out. Hahaha but we committed her to come because it wouldn't be complete without her and she said she would also prepare my favorite food before we go home! (Bananaque and Buko Salad-only she makes it the best:))

We worked with a sweet nanay in ward 2 and she was able to show us the home of a Less Active we didn't know about! We came to find out that the reason she hasn't been to church is because she is really offended by the members. She made a comment that was really sad to me, she said, "The church is true. The gospel is perfect. But the members are the worst!!" She really emphasized on the last part and I was caught off guard by her bitterness toward the members of the church. I have been thinking about it all week and as I have thought about it a few different things have come to mind. In our lives we are always going to have people who say mean things to us or about us. There are always going to be people who might do something mean to you but that is their choice. We cannot use what they did to us as an excuse for being Less Active or becoming someone people are afraid to be around. Jesus Christ had people reject him, spit on him, and so much more, yet He loved them. He didn't curse them or blame them, He still loved them. I hope we can always remember the example of our Savior Jesus Christ in treating others (our brothers and sisters) the way He would, with love and respect, even if they have done or said something bad to us. The other thing that came to mind is I hope as members of the church we remember who we are and what we stand for. We can't find ourselves caught up in the things of the world and try to fit in with the world’s standards. I remember the talk our beloved prophet gave last General Conference. He said, "Recently, as I have been reading and pondering the scriptures, two passages in particular have stayed with me. Both are familiar to us. The first is from the Sermon on the Mount: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” The second scripture is one which came to my mind as I pondered the meaning of the first. It is from the Apostle Paul’s Epistle to Timothy: “Be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.” I believe the second scripture explains, in great part, how we can accomplish the first. We become examples of the believers by living the gospel of Jesus Christ in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, and in purity. As we do so, our lights will shine for others to see. Each of us came to earth having been given the Light of Christ. As we follow the example of the Savior and live as He lived and as He taught, that light will burn within us and will light the way for others." I hope we can all remember those scriptures and strive to become the sons and daughters our Heavenly Father wants us to become. It won't be easy but He will help us and it will be worth it :)

I love you all! Have a great week! Remember who you are and what you stand for :)

Sister Wilde

So haggard but I am cooking Maha in what you call here a "dirty kitchen"
District activity!
Zone Leaders. We just laugh at Elder Suisalas' umbrella!
Because this puppy is adorable and reminds me of Gracie!
Lake Danao!
Me and my companion!
The sun was piercing in to my eyes in this picture but hey, there is a "wildeing shop" close to our apartment.                     (welding shop)                      

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Miracles and Surprises!

Hello Family!

So this week was a reminder that here in my mission I am always experiencing surprises and seeing miracles every day. It is something I love and absolutely enjoy :) (I enjoy the miracles more than the surprises. haha)

The surprise that we had this week was an unexpected little transfer. Surprise! Yep, that happened. No worries, I didn't transfer because I'm Ormoc for life, but Sister Lopez transferred. She is now in Carigara with Sister Neemia and my companion is Sister Culangan! She has been my roomate for the last 2 cycles and with her companion Sister Stinchfield going home we are now assigned in Ormoc 1st and 2nd ward. Talk about a BIG area!! Everyone in Ormoc 2nd just couldn't help but laugh yesterday because I get to be assigned there again before I go home and continue my work is Ormoc 1st. It's a challenge but we are enjoying every minute of it :)

I would like to share 2 miracles that happened to us this week :) We were working in my area and then were on our way to Sister Culangan's area and it is FAR APART. We were walking because our money was low because of how much we have been using to get around our areas. While walking for a long time a tricycle pulled up next to us and kept insisting we ride. We just got in the tricycle and when we got to our destination, he told us not to pay, that the ride was on him.

Our other miracle was on Saturday morning when we finished working we stopped at the grocery store because we didn't have food and we needed to also make it through Sunday. While grabbing some food we saw a member and talked to him for a minute then went to go buy our things. They started ringing up our groceries and we got really nervous because again, so low on money! Well before we knew it the member came up to us and said he will be paying for our groceries! Heavenly Father is truly aware of each one of us and will never let us down when we are in need!

Ryan and Mae are progressing wonderfully! They weren't able to come to church this Sunday since they went to the bukid but they are reading the Book of Mormon and have accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ with open hearts and willing minds.

Sunny and Marita are still showing their strong faith by attending church and doing all they can to save their money and prepare for baptism! They have such a love for the Gospel and hearing them bear testimony is amazing.

We have some cute little part member investigators Mary May, Trisha, and Angelica. Teaching the Gospel to little kids is one of my favorite things because they have so many questions and say the funniest things! It's always a wonderful feeling as well to teach these kids to complete their families so they can work toward being sealed in the Temple!

I love doing the work of the Lord, it brings nothing but happiness and satisfaction into my life as well as the lives of those we teach every day.

I love you all :)
Sister Wilde

LOVE  THESE SISTERS :) This was at our specialized training!
We had a baby powder fight. Haha.

Baby lizard.
Feeling the love this Valentine's Day :)
Walked into church and there was a chicken. Nothing unusual about this here in the Philippines :)

Sunday, February 7, 2016


Oh the drama that is taking place in this computer shop right now! With tears streaming down my cheeks words cannot express how proud I am of Kaden. He is going to do amazing things in Russia and I have no doubt in my mind he is going to change lives for the better, including his own. Even though our missions are COMPLETELY different I know he will have at least one convert. That is all we need in our mission, one convert, ourselves. I love you Kaden!! I also need to wish you a HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! Make it great :)

This week we had MLC in Tacloban and it was a blast because almost all of my batch are STL's or ZL's and Elder HoChing is one of the APs!! Sister Malu and I joked in Carigara that we would love one of our Batch to be one of the AP's before we went home and it happened. Nindot! Basta, it was great and it's always awesome to know how I can be a better missionary and leader for the Sisters we are over.

We did exchanges this week with Sister Culangan and Sister Stinchfield and I worked with Sister Stinchfield, have I mentioned that she is just the cutest thing! It is so fun to be with a new missionary and I remember what it was like to be in her place. Still learning the language and still learning to love the food ;) Unfortunately, she has been having a lot of health problems and has already gone to Manila but her stomach pain has come back so she will be returning home. She is heartbroken but has such strong faith and determination to come back and finish serving for her full 18 months.

This week with our investigators Ryan and Mae our lesson was AWESOME. First, we go to her house and what is she doing? Reading the Book of Mormon!! How awesome is that?? We taught the Plan of Salvation and I love seeing that spark of curiosity in their eyes when we tell them they won't go to hell when they die. A lot of people here believe that so they are afraid of death! The spirit was so strong and they are progressing so much! We taught them about Temples yesterday and they really want to come to church next week! They have so much potential!

I am still loving Ormoc! How could I not? I am Eternal Ormoc Mission. Haha! The ward is really supporting us in our missionary efforts and great things are coming about. Slowly, but surely!

Love you all!
Sister Wilde


Dinner :) Some of our recent converts and investigators of Sister Culangan and Sister Stinchfield!!
My companions!

Two things that made me LAUGH yesterday! #1
#2 haha!

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Ormoc for life!

Hello Family!

I guess you are all probably wondering if I was transferred or if I got a new companion, the answer is...I didn't transfer or get a new companion! Sister Lopez and I will finish our missions together here in Ormoc! Crazy!! Sister Lunar did however transfer back to her first area! Haha she has just moved to her 2nd area only to go back to her first! And Sister Stinchfield is the new companion of Sister Culangan. She was Sister Harper’s last companion and so she is so new and it is so much fun! During Stake conference the other day I had to translate for her and it brought back so many memories for me. I remember being in her position and it has just be so much fun to see how she still has a hard time eating so much rice and taking a bucket shower. It is good to have someone so new in the home, it keeps us on our toes ;)

Our work this week was successful as we were able to find 17 new investigators and had people in the ward work with us! They are so awesome! I got to be companions with Nanay Coquillia twice and then on Sunday I was with Sheila, Honey, and Charmaine. I love those sweet girls who really want to serve missions! They will be amazing!

On Saturday we planned to go finding in part of our area when Sister Maurer texted us asking us if she could work with us since they were coming down for Stake Conference and President Maurer would be in the Priesthood Session. So Sister Maurer came finding with us! We were able to teach 2 lessons and find 3 new investigators! Sister Maurer asked me to be her translator and it was the best. I love her and it was a great experience to have her work with us and her powerful testimony brought such a great spirit.

We have a new investigator family, Mae and Ryan. They have 2 little kids and they are MARRIED. That is seriously so rare here I promise so we could not be more excited!! They are also so prepared to hear and accept the gospel! They love that their family can be together forever and it was so powerful when my 3 cute companions shared their testimonies of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I have so much faith and hope for this family!!

Sunny and Marita are still amazing and haven't missed a Sunday for the past 7 weeks :) We are just working on the marriage process which is crazy here and we know we won't be here for their baptism but as long as they are baptized that is what matters and we just love them!

We have MLC tomorrow and Wednesday so I am looking forward to that! It really will be my last one :( Time is going by fast and it needs to slow down! I find that I get emotional every time someone talks to me about going home! But words can't express how much I love all of you and how grateful I am for your love and support for me! I plan to make these last 5 weeks the best!

Sister Wilde

Quick selfie with Sister Maurer!! I love her!
My companions with Diosella the photo bomber! :)
Some of my favorite people!!
Working with Nanay :)
We went to Jollibee this morning and I have an admirer! ;) There is a quote on the back but anyway it just made my day. It also means I have been in Ormoc way too long because everyone knows me and talks to me like we are lifelong friends! I really feel like this is my home and that I don't stand out!
 Me and Sister Stinchfield. Elder Child photo bombed us!
We celebrated Ahmon's birthday! He is one of our bishop's sons. Who doesn't want a cute little lechon pig for their birthday?! The best!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Lizards, and snakes, and fish oh my!

Hello everyone! How is everything over there in America? Things here in the Philippines are great :) I finally admitted to myself this week that the mission has made me pretty emotional or maybe it's the fact that I am on the last cycle of my mission!! I totally cried during daily planning. Who does that?? I started crying while planning for the people and realizing my time left as a full time missionary is short. I love being a missionary.

I mentioned in my last email that we were going to go to a zoo and well a zoo here in the Philippines is birds, giant creepy lizards ROAMING FREE, a snake, and fish that eat the dead skin off your feet. Could it get any better? Maybe. BUT it was so fun!! We all had the fish eat the dead skin off of our feet and the elders screamed like little girls! I hadn't laughed that hard in a long time and it was so entertaining! We decided that whoever had the most fish on their feet were the hardest workers and Elder Means and I took the prize! Everyone else said it's not fair because we are white. Haha!

We had our Zone Training meeting as well and it was awesome! Crazy to think it was my 2nd to last! The topic was Plan of Salvation and it was awesome. Heavenly Fathers plan really is perfect and we are so blessed to know it and have the knowledge of how we can return back to live in His presence. We also had interviews with President Maurer and the first thing he said to me was, "Well, Sister Wilde, you are going home!" That totally caught me off guard! But we had a great interview and I am so thankful he is my mission president! Heavenly Father knew I needed him and Sister Maurer in my mission and they have forever blessed my life.

This week Diomella and Diosella were baptized! They were so excited and so cute in their big baptismal clothes :) The elders had a little girl at church yesterday that is 10 years old and isn't yet baptized because her parents are less active and Diomella and Diosella fellow shipped her and were proud to say they were members of the church! Could they be any cuter?!?

This week we had exchanges with our Sisters in Sogod. From the Provo MTC to Tacloban Sister Harper and I got to be COMPANIONS AGAIN. THE BEST!!! We remembered our time in the MTC trying to speak Cebuano and now we were going around speaking Cebuano to everyone and sharing the gospel :) She did however have a weird thing going on with her eyes so we had to go to the hospital to get her eyes cleaned out (which looked super painful) but besides all that she is great :)

So transfer announcements will be coming out later today and I would usually have a feeling of if I am transferring or not and right now I would say I'm not but also I'm freaking myself out because I don't want to transfer. But whatever happens there is a reason for it and you will all get to find out next week where I go or who my new companion is.

I love you all :) Have a great week!!

Sister Wilde


I thought to myself, "Why is there a chicken in there??" Then I read the sign.

Yes. This totally happened.
Fish Spa


We only have 1 cycle!
Yes. President and Sister Maurer took us out to dinner!!! The fanciest I've ever eating in my mission. They are the best!!
Just hanging out with my BFF's

I just started my last planner!

Baptism!! :)