Week 19: Merry Christmas (Not That Ready Yet), and Skype Instructions

Family, Friends, Fans, and Fellow Servants,

3 days til Christmas and I’m not THAT ready yet. Mom has not sent the Christmas package, no personal money to go Christmas shopping, and not really feeling that Christmas cheer! This week has been rushed because I wasn’t really sure how I should feel for Christmas this year. My first Christmas without my family!

A good news for everybody: I had my 3rd baptism yesterday! A completed family.

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This is the Gallinero family from Tanauan City! They’re surely the humblest family I have met in my mission thus far. The missionaries before us contacted this family by talking to their father while driving the tricycle. Subsequently, four of them were already baptized when I arrived in the area, and the goal with my companion was to baptize the eldest son who the previous elders had a hard teaching due to time constraints. Finally, we have sowed the fruits of our labour. At the baptismal service last night, the happy parents shared their testimonies and their message for the ward. I could see their heartfelt gratitude on their faces. For me and my companion, we had a hard time teaching Rael because he works on alternating shifts and he often times he doesn’t go home after work. Rael, whom I believe only finished high school, works and provides for his family along with his father; while their mother takes care of their humble home and children. Rolane and Regine is in high school and grade school, consecutively. The most special among these children for me is Daboy, who has this burning desire to someday serve a mission, that he is already saving up for it by putting peso coins into his tiny piggy bank.

This family gives me a reminder of the family of the sweet infant Jesus. When His earthly parents went up to Bethlehem to be taxed, they found no inn to give birth. Yet in a humble but dignified manner did our Heavenly Father find a way for the Lord of Israel to be born. For this humble Gallinero family, they found joy from the Light of Christ this Christmas season, as they witness their whole family to be baptized into the Church. On December 21, 2015, they will be sealed in the temple.
I have truly seen the hand in the Lord in the short yet prolonging course of my mission. I have witnessed miracles I have always sought since day one, and I still look forward for more.

SKYPE INSTRUCTION:

I will be available on Skype on Christmas Day at 1:00 PM. My Skype username is omgpaolo. I am thrilled and can’t wait to see you on Christmas day. See you all love you!
Elder Poblete
Philippines San Pablo Mission
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