Wednesday, June 4, 2014

June 4, 2014 - Escalante City, Negros Occidental

The hills are alive
It is mango season. Just about every day, we've been given a bag full of yellowish-green mangoes, which is delicious. We are in the right place in the right time in this transfer, because just about everyone has a mango tree out here, so there's plenty to go around. If we just walk up to a person's house and ask for a mango, several mangoes will be given. This is a good place. 

 The center rotunda in Escalante, all flagged up.
On Friday night, we were invited to the Cafe Canderosa, the little restaurant in town that sells pancakes and delicious shakes, and they had all manner of really good foods that was all free! Including Mickey.
So the Manlambus Festival is now over. I didn't get quite the complete story of the Manlambus festival, but it seems to have to do with the olden days in Escalante when people used to fish with their bare hands or something like that, because manlambus is the Cebuano word for fishing with your hands or something. But all of the city has been strung up with banner flags and there were people selling all sorts of doodads and foods, and in the city center plaza, there was a big stage, and all last week, they had goings-on over there. I bought a Manlambus Escalante City shirt for remembrance, which was good. The work didn't suffer all too much for reason of the fiesta, but on Friday and Saturday it was hard to find anyone home because everyone was out miesta (fiesta-ing). 

Everyone here has a duyan (hammock)
 I feel like I was trying to make a statement with this picture. The barbequehan of Sister Navarro, a member in the Habitat. She barbecues the normal fare of pork, hotdogs, chorizo, chicken intestines, and pig's tongue, ear, and cheek fat.
And school just got back in session! Summer vacation actually started the day I got here to Escalante, which we saw because as we rode the bus from San Carlos here, there was a big graduation going on in every town, at every school. But summer is now over, apparently, and there seems to be something of a change in the weather, as yesterday, it rained in the morning, and the sky was super tropical, it was like the absolute image of what a tropical sky looks like, all big white clouds around, but blue skies above. So maybe we're starting to move out of the dry season and getting into the rain!

Elder Montano (there should be a little squiggly for his second "n", FYI) and me at the sea
I want to talk about another person here in our area, who is Toting. Toting, every day, kuyog's (joins with) the Old Escalante Elders, and goes with their work. Toting is deaf, and as such is mute, in that he does not know spoken language. However, this has not stopped him, as he is a very social, talkative person. He knows sign language, which is helpful, and so does Elder Lagundino, of Old Escalante.  However, he'll go up to anyone and start talking, part in signs, part in spoken not-words. I've been able to be in lessons where the elders give him time to testify. He usually knows what scripture or subject they're talking about, and he usually finds and explains this scripture to the people. It's a situation that you have to rely on the spirit, and really focus on him, (especially because sometimes people tend to make fun and laugh or get frustrated at this), but I've really been able to see the person he is. He is a kind, and kugihan jud (diligent) member of this church.

Baptism in Old Escalante of Sister Plieda, the mother of one of our investigators, sister Elsa, and a bata (child) from Old Escalante. Elsa was able to attend, and this was a really cool baptism, in part because...
...It was my first dagat bunyag! There was no water at the chapel in Old Escalante, so they held it at the ocean there. Nagtudlo si Toting sa Cebu. (Toting is pointing at Cebu.) But that was a really cool experience and just  neat thing to see, on top of the greatness of a baptism.
(Gene wrote in a letter to Adam about how close he was to Leyte Gulf, the sight of a significant battle during WWII)  I remembered when I first looked at a map of the Philippines after I got my call, and it looked like I was going to be right next to Leyte, and it was exciting because I remembered hearing about the battle of Leyte gulf on the history channel. But, here I'm basically on the opposite side of the Visayas. That over there is the Tacloban mission, and there's actually a few people here serving in Tacloban. Over there there's a big cool statue of MacArthur landing on the beach, and everyone on a mission there has pictures with it. It really kind of explains to me the whole reception I get here, being a big American walking around.

I am truly grateful for the example I have of priesthood power. I know what you, or your mission president mean by that use of the authority. We have the authority. We can be given the power, and guidance by the Spirit through our actions. But we have the authority of God to do what he needs done. We must trust in this. 

Thank you always for all of your support. I love you. I am praying for you. I am learning from you, always. 

Elder Dunford

1 comment:

  1. Happy to know you are having such a great time! :D Keep up the great work!