Monthly Archives: July 2014

Learning the Ropes of Leadership in Siniloan

 

Hey everyone!

Well, the typhoon was pretty crazy!  I was still in Calamba when it hit, and I guess it was actually pretty bad there but it was the worst out in my previous areas of Atimonan and Lucena. I was pretty worried about the members out there, but i’ve heard that they’re ok.  I did see a roof get shredded across the street but the only thing in the air was rain!  Water was pouring into our apartment all night.  I think I had it worse than Hunter, because it was actually super freaky – I thought our doors or glass windows were going to get shattered by the wind.  Then the day after the typhoon I got transferred to my new area of Siniloan, and it seems like the storm wasn’t very bad there.  Just no electricity for a couple days.

We are really seeing progression in our area right now! We kind of had to start over even though there have been missionaries here for a long time.  We are re-establishing expectations with the branch we are in and using our resources more effectively!  Sometimes it feels more like doing a business and setting structure to the way we manage things… so it’s kind of interesting!  But it’s fun and always directed by the spirit and in Tagalog!

 

 

I’m in a zone leaders area, because I’m a zone leader now.  My companion is a big New Zealander who plays rugby.  He’s very Polynesian.  Anyway, no photos this week – sorry, I need to buy some batteries for the camera.  There is a branch of the church here and our branch president is pretty cool.  He reminds me of Jason as far as his age and personality go.  This last week was good, we had exchanges with the AP’s so that was interesting (editor’s note:  the term “AP” refers to Assistant to the President, which are above Tyler in the mission chain of command).  We are kind of rebooting our area so we just did finding the WHOLE DAY, so it was a great learning experience about leadership.  We’re going to have exchanges again tomorrow with another companionship just to correct any issues or help inspire them to do the right things.  We hope to provide some re-motivation and focus on their area.

 

I have been missing Hunter sometimes more than others.   All I seem to get each week in his emails to me is, “Hey are you on???” or “Where the heck are you???” or “Hey”.  I never get anything in detail (editor’s note:  this is ironic because Tyler rarely gives us much detail!!)

Love,

Elder Tyler Burbidge

 

 

 

 

 

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Typhoon & Transfer – Busy Week in the Philippines!

Hey everybody!

This is just a quick post to let you know that I am safe and sound after Typhoon Glenda blew through Calamba.  It’s been crazy, but in addition to the typhoon I got transferred, so I’m not anywhere to close to Hunter anymore.  I am in the the town of Siniloan which is still in the Laguna Province but on the East side of Laguna de Bay.  I have been called to be a zone leader, which means I am responsible for about 24 other missionaries in this area.  My new companion is a big Tongan from New Zealand and he’s super funny and nice.

I will be bale to post more on Monday, which is our P-Day, but our mission president said we could send a quick email to let everyone know that we are safe and have power and services back after the storm.  Being called to serve as a zone leader freaked me the heck out at first, but it’s going pretty well and it’s helping me so much to become more like Christ.

The storm was INTENSE!  I watched a roof get ripped off around 4 am, but it wasn’t ours so that was good.  At one point through the night I was getting rained on inside of my apartment through the windows and the air conditioning unit, so I got up and walked out into the living area and water was pouring through the back window!   It was freaking loud as heck… so yeah it was flippin’ scary.  But, alas I am yet alive and well in a new zone with some of the members of my MTC district back in Utah, so that is fun to re-connect with them and do good work.

Location of Siniloan in the Laguna Province.

Location of Siniloan in the Laguna Province.

I’ll write more in a few days and hopefully send photos of my new area.

Love,

Elder Tyler Burbidge

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Safe & Sound After Typhoon Glenda!

 

People being rescued near Elder Burbidge's work area.

People being rescued near Elder Burbidge’s work area.

Editor’s note:  The following is an email from Tyler’s Mission President that we received yesterday.  We are thankful that he is safe and are excited to hear from him whenever power and internet connections are restored.

Dear Parents,

Most if not all of you are aware that we recently had a typhoon visit our beautiful Philippines San Pablo Mission. It arrived Tuesday evening and lasted through the night into the early morning hours of Wednesday. We had warned all of our missionaries Tuesday morning of the pending typhoon and that its path would cut across our mission, so they were well prepared and had taken cover well in advance of the storm.

Following the storm, our first concern was to assure that all of our missionaries were safe and in good condition. The storm knocked out our power, cell phones, internet, and water in virtually all areas of our mission which limited our ability to establish contact immediately. Many of the roads were closed or clogged with downed trees, power lines, etc. Our cell phone service was the first of our services to be restored on Wednesday and we started reaching out to our missionaries. Thursday morning we went forward with our transfer day as planned and about half of our missionaries were at the Mission Home that day to pick up their new companions allowing us to check on them. We have been in contact with all of our missionaries and I assure you they are safe and healthy. I am amazed at the resiliency of these great missionaries.

Much of our mission still does not have power as I am writing this message my Friday night. Power was restored to the area around the Mission Home about noon today. Tomorrow we will need to drive outside of our mission to the closest location with internet service in order to send this email. Local crews are working around the clock to restore power to the balance of the areas as quickly as possible. Each of our missionaries are well prepared with sufficient supplies and we will continue to monitor the situation from day to day and take any necessary steps to assure their wellbeing.

Depending on when power and internet services are restored, you may or may not receive an email from your missionary this Monday. If they are unable to send an email Monday, we will have them send one as soon as possible following the restoring of services.

Sister Mangum and I will begin a two week tour of the mission next Tuesday to conduct interviews with each of the missionaries as part of our normally scheduled interview cycle. We look forward to seeing each of the missionaries and being able to check on them personally.

Thanks for sending us such well prepared and consecrated missionaries. You can be very proud of them for their dedication and devotion to this sacred work of the salvation of our Heavenly Father’s Children.

Sincerely,

President Bart A. Mangum

Sister Renae J. Mangum

Winds from Typhoon Glenda reached 150 mph.

Winds from Typhoon Glenda reached 150 mph.

 

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For Unto You This Day, In the City of Calamba, A Child is Born – Even in a Tricycle!

Hey everyone!

This is a photo of my group of missionaries right now (it’s called a Zone)!  There are more missionaries in our zone, but some of them decided not to come to the activity.  The photo was taken at the University of the Philippines, Los Banos campus for our zone p-day.  I’m in my yellow “King Felix” T-shirt and next to me is my buddy, Elder Bland.  My companion is the one holding a rugby ball in black behind me. We got some sweet floral hats!

Our Zone activity at the University of the Philippines

Our Zone activity at the University of the Philippines

So as you can tell from the title of my blog post, I’ve got a story for you.  So we went to 7/11 early in the morning to meet with our fellow missionaries and travel to our meeting NEW MISSION PRESIDENT!  We arrived several minutes late to 7/11 (but were still ‘early’ compared to our other elders). Outside in the parking lot was a woman who was screaming, and before we know what’s going on, a man is laying down a NEWBORN BABY on the seat of a filthy, dirty, germy, tricycle!!!  They then moved the baby (who was still tied to the mother via the umbilical chord) and the mother to another tricycle and took off to, hopefully, the hospital!  Yeah, sooooo… that was a FREAKING CRAZY EXPERIENCE.  Ahh the miracle of life!

Well, this area is testing me!  It demands EXACT planning, EXACT patience, EXACT love, and EXACT understanding, which is hard for a human being like myself.  It’s helping me to grow and to change expectations for myself and for others to a realistic level.  That doesn’t mean giving less effort, rather adjusting the fruit that will come from the effort to a realistic level with consistent progress, be it fast, at a jog, or at a crawl.  I have to keep reminding myself that God has a plan for this area, and it doesn’t depend on my opinion, my companion’s opinion or anyone else.  As long as we’re obedient to the counsel that we receive from HIM, we should be doing well. We were going to have a baptism, but it fell through because our investigator didn’t attend church, but God’s will is right in the middle of it all so I am sure it will all work out.

We’ve got one progressing 10 year old kid right now in our teaching pool.  His name is Clarence.  He’s funny.  I like teaching kids because their faith is so strong, but we are going to find a golden family this week, I can feel it!
We also met the new mission president named President Mangum and he is awesome!  He’s a jokester and he seems like the perfect fit for the mission right now.  He’s very kind, he’s kinda short, is a great testifier of the truth, AND he loves baseball.  Unfortunately, his favorite team is NOT the Seattle Mariners, but i guess that’s okay, at least there’s SOMEBODY to talk baseball with here.
I miss and love you all and can’t wait to hear from you again!  Malapit na ako sa one year mark ko! grabe! quente pang oras dito sa mission!  Have a great week!!!!  Be happy and smile =)
love,
Elder Tyler Norwin Burbidge

 

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