Friday, December 30, 2016

Naga Mission Update

Dear Philippines Naga Mission Family,

This is to inform you that typhoon Nina has passed-by. All missionaries are safe and well accounted for.

We have visited those missionaries who cannot be contacted via cellphone  due to lost of signal. We have given them additional foods and potable drinking water.
It has been reported that there were some damages in their apartments and we will address those issues as soon as communication and travels are feasible .

The Bicol areas have no electricity at this time. It is projected that this will last for more than a week. Also, all areas do not have internet connectivity. So, you will not receive an email from your missionary for this reason.

Thank you very much for all your prayers. Rest assured that your missionary is in his or her finest condition. Sister Zapanta and I love them very much. Please continue encouraging them to be the best missionary they could ever be and to be the kind of missionary the Lord wants them to be.

Best regards,

President and Sister Zapanta

P.S
Sorry for the delayed information, we still do not have electricity and internet in most of our area. There are also some areas without cellphone signal at the moment and we are experiencing intermittent signal from time to time. 

Friday, December 23, 2016

Typhoon Nina

Dear Philippines Naga Mission Family,   

I am writing to inform you that our mission will be impacted by typhoon Nina within the next few days. The Church has been observing this storm for days and has made numerous preparations for its arrival. Our mission is taking necessary precautions to prepare for the incoming storm.  The main track of typhoon Nina is projected to pass over the areas of the Bicol region including all of the areas in our mission. Current forecasts show that it will develop into a signal 3 typhoon and is projected to reach land early Sunday morning December 25, and will clear land by Monday.  All of our missionaries assigned in Camarines Norte will be evacuated to more secure locations on Saturday the 24th. Other areas in Camarines Sur will also be evacuated as needed.  Many missionaries will be moving and staying in more secure apartments in Daet, Iriga, Goa, Sipocot, and Naga.  These apartments are located in flood free areas and are away from the sea. These apartments are also strong structures and should withstand the typhoon. We have alerted all of them to store sufficient drinking water and food to last through Monday. They are advised to stay in their apartments from Saturday afternoon to Sunday afternoon and later if needed.  We have sufficient food storage to meet their needs. Mission leaders will ensure that constant communication will be had between each missionary and the mission president to address any issues. We have confidence in our preparation.   Thank you very much for your concern and prayers. We pray that we will be safe and protected as the typhoon passes our mission this Christmas weekend.    

 Sincerely,    
 President Tomasito S Zapanta

Monday, December 19, 2016

Happy Early Christmas

Hello Everyone and Happy Early Christmas,
Sorry I will not be able to see all of you for Christmas just my family but that will make it all the more special for when I return home I guess all the holidays that I missed will be filled with so much joy and all that (Sorry I could not think of another word) It is really weird now how Tagalog words come into my brain even before English words sometimes but I guess that goes to show that I am working hard and that I am embracing the culture and one of the many languages here in the Philippines. I cannot believe that me training is almost finished with as well two transfers are finished and I only have one more week of my training as a missionary in the field and then I will be a regular missionary in the field, not that I am not a regular missionary because I am but I am not really sure how else to describe it but it is awesome I cannot believe that this transfer is almost over it seems like I just got here in Camaligan still but that is not the case. I have really seen my progression though because like yesterday in church I can actually hold a conversation with members here in my branch as opposed to in my last area I could not really talk to the members it is so awesome and Elder Watene is awesome too we will probably be together for the next transfer because then he will go home because his mission will then be over and then nobody knows what will happen then basically anything. I also sang a musical number in sacrament mtg yesterday with Elder Watene we sang Away in a Manger and it was pretty good and we also went to Primary for Sing Time essentially not sure what it is called here in the Philippines because the Sister came up to us and asked if we could help he teach the primary children some Christmas Songs and of course we said yes so we did that. We also had a a day without power so that was fun too for various reasons they turn off the power in the town so to speak it is just what they do I guess not sure why if I find out I will let you know. I know that this church is true and that this Christmas Season is an opportunity to come to know the Savior and all that he has done for us and that he loves us sorry this is kind of short but we have our Mission Christmas Conference later so we are very busy but MERRY CHRISTMAS to you all 
With Much Love,
Elder Chilson           

 Eating at a local burger place
 Inside Elder Chilson's apartment
 The front of Elder Chilson's apartment
 These are pictures of a river.  

Monday, December 12, 2016

Fast Week

Hello Everyone,
This week went so fast no joke, I feel like I have been going very fast all day and my only time to take a break is when I get to lay my head down on the floor to sleep at night because we sleep on the floor here (in my last appt we had beds but in Camaligan we sleep on the floor) that is all good with me though I would prefer here in the Philippines that someone else slept in the bed that I would be sleeping in because really for me I do not need it that much other people here in the Philippines need a bed more than I do. 

Elder Watene and I have been working very hard though especially this Christmas Season we have been very busy helping people out and teaching and other missionary stuff like that but at the same time as always there are some challenges. For examples I had my first experience this past week with a sick companion I will only give you the short version but here goes, we got invited to a members house for some Krispy Kreme doughnuts and I was like oh yes!!!! those are the best!!!! (a member brought some back with him from when he went to Manila because they have Krispy Kreme in Manila) but they made Elder Watene very sick so he was fine until that evening and then we went to bed but about midnight he started throwing up no joke and then went on off and on till 2am no joke I was like what??? He threw up for 2 hours but that is the truth so the next day he mostly slept and so we stayed in that day and we did not work which was not that much fun for me obviously but it is not much fun anyways when you have a sick companion regardless but it was fine because I handled it as only a missionary can and that is with patience. Most of you probably know I am a pretty patient guy. 

This week was also probably a tougher week but that is because the Lord wants us to work harder maybe or Satan wants to try to see what he can do to us to make us stop fulfilling our calling as missionaries and stop the work from progressing but we know that there is nothing that he can do to stop me and Elder Watene here so we will just keep working. We also got to see the First Presidency Christmas Devotional Broadcast in Canaman so that was nice as well it made it feel more like Christmas for me because honestly it does not really feel like Christmas here in the Philippines because it is hot and no snow and all the Christmas Trees are fake but that is okay some people have Christmas lights but it is okay with me because for the Lord I can sacrifice what I need to for him because I know that the blessing will be some much greater for me and my family. I know that this work is the work of the Lord and this work is not just for missionaries alone but for all members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints alike and that as we try our best to share the gospel we will be blessed I know this to be true. I wish you all the best from the Philippines this Christmas Season.
With Much Love,
Elder Chilson         

Monday, December 5, 2016

Happy December

Hello Everyone and Happy December,
I cannot believe that it is December now and 2016 is almost done but that is how the time seems to be moving it is crazy. But this week was a little different I was in a threesome for the first time we got a call Monday afternoon we were at the store buying food and Elder Watenen tells me that we are going to have another companion I thought he was joking becasue he jokes a lot but he wasnt we got Elder Valdez last Monday night and he has been with us for the last week it has just been temporary just for this week, he is getting transfered tomorrow so it is all good. It was pretty different though because he is Filipino so you guys can imagine having an American a Filipino and an Islander in a companionship that about covers all the nationalities of missionaries here in the Naga Mission for the most part. It was good we worked a lot as expected you can get more done with 3 missionaries but it also has it's hard ships as well but we worked though some of those but what people have said about threesomes is right that it is harder overall that if you are just in a twosome but sometimes that is what you have to do I cannot give that details why somethings happen but it just goes to show that what the mission president says is what you do that he is really called of God just like all the missionaries are to be here in the Naga Mission nothing is accidental it is all part of God's Plan for his children and that is not all made up but it has been carefully planned from the foundation of the world. President Zapanta is very cool him and his wife (Sister Zapanta) love the missionaries here so much you can just feel it in the way that they act and what they say they treat us as if we are their own children which is awesome when you have that kind of support form your missionpresident adn his family it just makes our work as missionaries so much easier so that is awesome as well. We are just going to keep working here in Camaligan the Branch here is getting close to be a ward I think so we are just wokring hard with investigators and less actives and such, I love this work and I know that it is the work that I am supposed to be doing right now for the Lord so I will keep working hard and giving my best.
With Much Love,
Elder Chilson   

Monday, November 28, 2016

Bucket Showers

Hello Everyone,
I hope that everyone had a great Thanksgiving with lots of food family and football. I must confess that I did not really have any of that but that is because I am in the Philippines where there is no Football to start of with but htat is okay because I cannot really play it right anyways as a missionary, basically for me Thanksgiving was just another wokr day for me as everyday is we do not have anydays off as missionaries but that is all good. There is also no turkey here in the Philippines it is mostly an American food I think the closest thing to turkey is chicken but we all no that that is not the same and my family is on the other sode of the work right now so it would be sort of hard to be with them but that is all good to because I know that they love me nad I love them and nothing will change that so that in part makes it possible for me to be in the Philippines right now on my mission which is pretty cool for me to think about. Now on to my week it was pretty good it went pretty fast again we have been working alot still on finding new investigators and people to teach because we do not have a lot to work with right now as well we have been working with LAs and PM Families it has it's challenges no doubt but me and Elder Watene are working pretty hard on finding solutions to their problems and helping them come back and partake of the goodness of God's Love that he has for all of his children. Also some other things about my new area because I have a little bit more time now we have to buy water that is how bad the water is here it is pretty bad so we cannot drink it but it is not that expensive so we do it becasue we have to. I have to take bucket showers now as well because we do not have a real shower so you cna imagine how that is it is all good with me becasue it is very hot here so the cold water feels good atleast for me. It is also bug season so the bugs have been a little annoying but it is all good if anyone knows me I won't get sick or admit to being sick there are several Americans who have gotten sick here just saying but that is all good or a fun challenge if you will for me to not be like them and not get sick.(Mom/Mother Figure in my Life, do not worry I will be fine) Me and Elder Watene have been wokring pretty hard that is about all I can say in that department and I have been learning a lot Tagalog/Bicol in the process but yes there are a lot of different types of problems here in the Philippines that are different from American but that makes my mission and my time here so much more fun and I know this church is true with all my heart and I am so blessed to be a prt of it nad this great work.
With Lots of Love,
Elder Chilson         

Elder Chilson and Elder Watene


Monday, November 21, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving

Hello Everyone,
I am doing well here in my new area in the Camaligan Branch it is more city here I am about 10-15mins away from the mission home and mission office in Naga but I am in the same zone as I was before so I know most of the elders in the area which is cool. They speak a lot of Bicol here I am not joking my Branch President speaks Bicol and a lot of the other member's do too so maybe I will learn a lot of Bicol here which will be tough but maybe fun. I had to bear my testimony in sacrament mtg yesterday that was fine much improved than in my last area I would say it helps now that my companion knows English so we are on the same page and we can be a little more unified as a companionship. Elder Watene is pretty cool he is pretty musical so that is nice as well but we get a long well he is a veteran missionary he does not have much time left I might be his last companion but we will see. We laugh and work well together and we just have fun together I guess and work hard at the same time if that is possible. Since this is relatively a new area that I am in now we do not have a lot of investigators we spend a lot of time finding and trying to help less actives come back to church but it is all good I can do that right? That is right yes I can so we are working hard at that. I fee like I am understanding people more now as well as opposed to my last area as well. My appt now id pretty big we have a upstairs and down stairs it is meant to have 4 elders but we only have two so it is like 3x's larger than my last appt I would say it is alright though I mean it is the Philippines that is about all I can say about that it is not like America but that is all part of the job.We had a lesson with a principal of a school yesterday about the Book of Mormon it was our first time meeting here she was a referral from some members and then went with us to go and meet this individual and like most people she thought we were Jehovah's Witnesses but we explained that we were not and that we were Mormons and she basically wanted to know what we were about and why we as foreigners were here in the Philippines and we went straight to the Book of Mormon that is what makes us special and sets us apart from other religions so we had a really good lessons about that and the Spirit was pretty strong their and I know that if she takes Moroni's challenge she will come to know as I have the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon so we will follow up on that and see where that takes us. I know this church is true and as I continue to work hard blessings will come and I know that same can happen to all of you through you missionary efforts also Happy Thanksgiving they do not have that here in the Philippines but that is all good.  
Love, 
Elder Chilson          

Monday, November 14, 2016

Transfers

Hello Everyone, 
This has been another crazy week and the craziest part probably happend last night about 10pm (Filipino Time) I got a call from the Zone Leaders and they wanted to talk t me and Elder Paragas and since it was the end of the transfer I figured that they have some news for ELder Paragas because he is our District Leader but hta was not the case they called to tell me that I am being transfered and I though they were joking but they were not and we were like what my training is not done yet and such but it is all good so my new companion will be Elder Watene he is from New Zealand so he is an "Islander" but he is really cool I have sung with him before and he is in my Zone right now so I know hum somewhat he is pretty cool so I will be in the Camaligan B Area so that is close to Naga than where I am at now so that will be exciting this does not happen very often usually new missionaries are with their trainers for 2 transfers but I will finish my training with Elder Watene and I though I was going to be here in Calabanga for Christmas but that is not the case but it is all good it just goes to show that the Lord knows better than we do because for reasons I do not know yet the Lord needs me in Camaligan now so that is where I will go it is never a quiet moment here in the mission that is for sure. We have been pretty busy teaching lessons to investigators and less active families and we have been doing well with that we have less active families and investigators at church yesterday and we had a investigator pass through a baptismal interview on Saturdayso I will miss that baptism but it is all good the work continues to move forward no matter who is standing for the Lord. We have to FHE's and they went well and we have exchanges this week too and they were fun I was with Elder Malungahu and he is pretty cool and he really loves the people here in the Philippines. So I am just continuing to do my best to be the best missionary I can be here in the Naga Mission. The language/languages are tough not going to lie but what does not change is the language of the spirit and if we continue to listen to that and follow it's promptings we will never be wrong I testify that the language of the spirit speaks to everyone differently but it does not lie and it does not change but that the windows of heaven are open today and we can all seek to have the Holy Ghost with us if we are living accordingly and I know this to be true and because of the knowledge that I have I will continue to share the gospel here in the Philippines until my time is done.
With Much Love,
Elder Chilson

 Mission Home
  Sabang
 Elder Paragas and Elder Chilson at the ocean for P-Day 

Monday, November 7, 2016

Miracles

Hello Everyone,
I am basically just working and studying and I cannot believe that I have been here for over one month now in the Naga Mission and I have also lost roughly 8-10 lbs which is kind of surprising but we were at a member home and they had a scale so I jumped on it and I converted from Kgs to Lbs so it's all good I am not going to be the same when I get home that is for sure but that is all part of the mission if you are the same when you get home then you just wasted two years in my opinion. There is so much power in a Testimony of the Prophet Joseph Smith we had a lesson last night and the Spirit was so strong we were teaching the Restoration which is something I love to teach about mostly because it is close to my home and close to my heart I love saying to people that my house is close to the house of Joseph Smith. I also saw so many miracles this week and I was also pretty sure that I lost our cell phone this week but I did not it was one of those miracles that I saw this week. So we were in a huge rain storm and I am soaked right do not worry mom I am using the rain coat you sent me with but anyways we got off a padyak and I put my hand into my pocket to look at the time on our cell phone that we share and it was not there and I was like fudge did I just leave it on that padyak we are toast and this and that but after some talking and looking Elder Paragas had it the whole time in his shirt pocket and he had no idea how it got there and I did not either because we were both sure that when we left our appt in the morning that I had the phone in my pocket because it was my day to carry it but that is mission life that Lord is watching over us as he does all of his missionaries and miracles are happening all the time and we need to have the eyes to see them and that is part of the fun of mission life. It is now into the rainy season earlier this week it rained for three days straight no joke but it comes and goes but when it rains it usually rains very hard. We also had a Filipino holiday this week All Saints Day I do not really have time to explain but it is a day where people go to the cemeteries here which are different by the way of the cemeteries in the USA but they essentially party and worship their dead family members and it was different but since most people are Catholic there were prayers songs and such but we just observed it and visited some cemeteries Elder Paragas said it was okay so I was fine with it. It was different but all good if you want more info I am sure you could Google it. I cannot believe that I am almost through my first transfer and my training is almost half over I ahve learned a lot and I continue to learn all the time about Tagalog, Bicol and the Filipino culture. I am doing well and just enjoying my mission here in the Naga Mission. 
Love,
Elder Chilson     

Trainers and Trainees Workshop
Philippines Naga Mission

Monday, October 31, 2016

Time in Mission Field

Hello Everyone,
This week went by quick once again but it feels like not as much happened. I must confess and Bishop Hall if you are reading this you can start laughing anytime you know what I am talking about. Time in the mission field is so different that time in the real world I am not joking anyone who has served a mission knows what I am talking about I have come to the conclusion for missionaries it is impossible for them to always be on time I am not totally sure why yet but that is a fact even with all of my good time management skills there is always something that makes me come up a little short but that is okay that is all part of the mission. We are still teaching quite a bit we have some progressing investigators with some baptismal dates I extended another one this past week so baptisms should be coming but I know that its is not all about baptisms because it is not but I am working hard there is no doubt of that. My Tagalog is getting better everyday I study hard way harder than I did in school I regret to say but it is true. I had a special new missionary workshop this pas t week which was a lot of fun to see all the missionaries that I came here with and the mission home is really nice it is a mansion compared to where most people live here and they even have staff like cooks and a security guard you see here in the Philippines all the church building have gates around them and there are bars on all the windows and such but it is all good there are policemen all around at different posts in various locations. Also my support or money I get from the mission to buy food and stuff is pretty hit or miss and our cards are not the most reliable so that is also a little obstacle but it is all good because I now how to fast just kidding I am eating food here but we were supposed to get support but we have not yet and this is not the first time it has happened since I have been here not to make anyone worry it is simply for information purpose. Well I know with certainty that this church is true and that Jesus Christ lives I have no doubt of that and I know that with his help I am learning Tagalog and it is because of him that I am here in the Philippines it is not by accident or random that I am here in the Philippines right not it is because he needs me here now and I know that for sure. Also continue to read the Book of Mormon if you can and so many blessings will come I can promise that. 
With Lots of Love,
Elder Chilson     

Monday, October 24, 2016

Music

Hello Everyone,
This week was another quick one it felt like for me but a lot happened and I will give you the "short version" as best as I can, Mom and Dad you know what I am talking about. We had a baptism this past Friday and it was awesome I provided the music which was fun because there is only one piano in our whole church building a lot of singing is done accapella so that is fun but I led the music and such, I will say Bishop's wife in my ward really likes my voice and that seems to be the same for anyone that I am singing around. Music here is in English for the most part hymns, radio, etc but there is some that is in Tagalog it depends but the same music that is popular in America is popular here too so you can figure that out for yourselves. We extended two baptismal invitations to two different progressing investigators so maybe we will have some more baptisms in the future depending how long I am here and let's just keep in mind that my Tagalog right now is not that good so you can imagine me communicating with people I do alright but it is tough at the same time because there are not many Americans here in the Philippines and because I am a missionary people know that I an friendly and so people like to talk/practice their English with me which is fine but that is not why I am here I am here to learn/speak Tagalog but it is all good at the same time a lot of church stuff is in English as well so that is nice. Most Filipinos have some level of English because they learn it in school but my mission language is Tagalog and most people would prefer Tagalog or some other dialect like Bicol which is very hard to understand btw but it is all good I am really enjoying things here it has been really hot the last few days my arms are changing colors you can imagine I am getting tan/darker. My training is going well it is like the MTC a lot of studying planning etc. but it is all for my benefit and my trainer is awesome he pushes me to be better. We also have little ants in our appt which is a little annoying but it is all good there are all kinds of different insects and bugs here and it is not that clean here either overall it depends where you are but it is all good we do our best poverty is definitely a thing here but I am working hard and doing well and  I can't wait to seen what next week brings.
With Much Love,
Elder Chilson          



Monday, October 17, 2016

Two Months

Hello Everyone,

I am still getting used to being called a foreigner I got a call from my bishop Saturday night and he asked me if I could speak in sacrament meeting and of course I couldn't back down from a challenge or say no one of the two so I spoke for about 10mins in Tagalog in church yesterday and I did alright. I also lived through my first Typhoon here in the Philippines we had one from Friday evening till Sunday morningish is was a lot of rain and I mean a lot of rain like flooding/ 3-6 inches of water on the roads and lightning and thunder and wind our power was pretty inconsistent we didnt have it for Friday night and it was hit of miss on Saturday, we also stayed in on Saturday and did not proselyte by the ZL's request it wasn't really that safe either so it was probably a wise choice. I also ate Balot for the first time on Thursday!!! it is really weird but it was okay.  the wierdest things I have probably eaten are liver squid and Balot but I am doing well I eat a lot of rice and when we  shop I just buy normal food that I would have at home I eat oatmeal most morning I REALLY MISS MILK but it is okay laundry is okay I do what I have to do I do it by hand but every area is different in Naga the elders there pay people to do it for them but I am doing fine So there are 4 elders in my ward me and my comp live downstairs and the other 2 elder live upstairs we share things and such there is only cold water for showers out plumbing isnt that great (Yes I meant the Toilet) The lights in out appt are not that great either so I am happy to have my headlamp but all is well I live in humble circumstances for sure we walk alot and use public transportation some too it is hot and humid but what can you do I sweat a lot and I am having fun my Tagalog is getting there I am learning some Bicol as wellI also sort of related football to missionary work this week because you know me so all to mission prep I did before my mission was like weight lifting/workouts in the off season, then me going to triples/preseason stuff was like me going to the MTCs it was tough but it was manageable then getting the the mission field is like the football season it is long and short at the same time for example I am already 2 months into my mission and the season is great if you work hard play hard and with love for the game and want it more than your opposition then the outcome will be in your favor and I hope me mission can be that successful. Life in the Philippines is very different than in the states for example some people do not have a real floor they have a dirt floor, they are lucky if they have a concrete floor like we do in our appt or most people do not have cars they have motorcycles and we use public transportation some but we also walk a lot and it's hot but it is all good. We have our baptism that was supposed to be on last Saturday is now on this upcoming Friday so hopefully that will go through but it is all good I have heard that every area in this mission is different so we will see what fun stuff I do, and I feel like this area that I am in has a little bit of everything so that is cool too city, country, the roads are different here too rarely is there blacktop it is mostly concrete and there are no addresses here so that can be frustrating but it is all good I am doing well here and I hope that all is going well with you to the language is getting better everyday as well. This week I feel like went be very fast and a lot happens and sorry I can't tell you about it all  
I Love you very much
Elder Chilson


Monday, October 10, 2016

Naga Philippines Mission!

Hello everyone from the Naga Philippines Mission!
Yes I am finally here! I got here on Wednesday Oct 5th from the Manila MTC and believe me things are very different here I mean really different but that is okay that is all part of the job I am taller than my companion I am taller that my mission president and for a good part of the Filipino people here and that is very different I am used to being shorter that most people. I am also bigger in size than most of the Filipino people as far as my shoulders and my legs and that is different too but I have heard from a lot of people that I will get vary skinny while I am here but we will see obviously I am not lifting weights as much as I used to but I do not know it is too early to tell but it is all good. I am serving the the Calabanga Ward and my area is Calabanga B. My Tagalog is getting there I can understand some people but they all have different accents to it is difficult and I am also learning Bicol right now it is a language that is sort of like Tagalog but it is different too and a lot of our investigators speak that so that is fun I think/thought they were speaking Tagalog and they weren't but I have been told that if people hear me speaking Tagalog they will speak Tagalog to me and not Bicol but it is all good because I have the best trainer in the world. His name is Elder Paragas and he is a Filipino and he know several languages and English is not one of his strong suits but that is okay because it will help my Tagalog a lot and it has I have learned a lot just from the first couple days that I have been here. Things are very different here our appt is one room and our plumbing is suspect and it is always hot and humid we have not had much rain since I have been here but that is all good it all comes with the call. I have helped teach some lessons and that has been fun I will never forget that feeling I felt at my first ever lesson in the field I felt the spirit testify to me that this is where I am supposed to be so here is where I will stay we also have a baptism scheduled for this upcoming Saturday which is very exciting it is a girl about 10 years old and she is from a part member family and she pasted here interview for baptism yesterday so hopefully next week I have have great news. Overall things are going well with me and I am just doing my best to learn Tagalog so I can communicate with these people as best as I can. The Manila MTC was very different than Provo if you were wondering and I was not able to go inside the Manila Temple because they are doing renovations on it so that was tough but all is well and just FYI I won't be able to go to any temple while I am on my mission but that is okay. Sorry just a quick side about the Manila MTC but all is going well here with me. I love you all very much and I now now more than ever that this church is true wherever you go the gospel is the same in whatever country you go to even in the Philippines I love you all very much 
Elder Chilson            

Friday, October 7, 2016

Elder Chilson's Arrival


Dear Brother and Sister Chilson,

We were happy to welcome Elder Chilson to the Philippines Naga Mission. Your Son is excited about his mission and enthusiastic about entering the Lord’s service in this area, as is evident in the enclosed photograph. Elder Chilson has had an orientation meeting and is now serving in his first assignment with a prayerfully selected trainer. 

Your Son is assigned in the Canaman Zone, to labor in the Calabanga B area. We hope you will write Elder Chilson each week. Include encouraging news of family events and achievements, spiritual experiences, and other matters which will bring joy and deeper commitment.

This is a wonderful mission, and your Son is in for one of the greatest experiences of his life. With your support and encouragement, Elder Chilson will mature and progress beyond your expectations. Elder Chilson will develop a great love for his fellow missionaries as well as for the people he will serve and bless.

We appreciate the opportunity to work with Elder Chilson. Please let us know if there is anything we can do to help you. We love your missionary and want this mission to be a great experience for your entire family.

Picking up your missionary from the mission field at the end of the mission is discouraged due to problems it has caused in the past. If you are considering picking up Elder Chilson from the field, at the end of his mission, please send me an email at least 6 months prior to Elder Chilson release date.


Sincerely,
Tomasito Zapanta
Mission President
Philippines Naga Mission





Friday, September 30, 2016

Philippines

Hello Everyone, 
I made it to the Philippines and it is very cool (not really it is hot and humid) but that is okay. There is a little bit of a catch though I didnt get all of my luggage evidently luggage is in either LA or SLC about 16 missionaries that came to the Philippines with me didnt get all of their luggage but that is okay (not really I dont have any clothes) but the MTC President's wife is letting me borrow some clothes so it is all good. Everything is very different here that is for sure but it is okay because that is all part of the fun, it is true I am basically only here at the Philippines MTC for visa processing but I think I will be able to do some fun stuff as well like tomorrow we are going to be able to proselyte in Manila for 4hrs with a native missionary so that will be exciting to have some freedom. The Philippines MTC is a lot smaller than Provo but it is the 4th largest in the world believe it or not the list goes Provo, Mexico City, Sao Pablo Brazil and then Manila Philippines so that is cool. The traveling went well overall it was just very long I got through customs and everything okay but then I found out that some of my luggage didnt make it so then I had to fill out the forms and stuff and hopefully the rest of my luggage will get here before I leave the Philippines MTC. I leave for the mission field this upcoming Wednesday Oct 5th which is very exciting and one tough thing about being here is that General Conference is actually a week late it actually happens next Sunday in the Philippines so this Sunday for me is a regular fast Sunday so then hopefully I will be able to watch General Conference in the field which will be cool. I am really excited to be working with native Filipinos even though I know that it will be challenging as well. I exchanged some of my money today as well which was fun most people now some English at least around in a bigger city like Manila but it is not very good so my Tagalog should improve a lot which will be fun for me because I want to get better at it. I won't be able to email again while I am in the Philippines MTC so sorry about that the schedule is different here but I cant really change that I love all of you very much and I am very excited for what lies ahead. IT IS SO GREAT TO FINALLY BE HERE IN MY MISSION COUNTRY OF THE PHILIPPINES!
With Much Love,
Elder Chilson    
Nathanael with all his luggage in the Provo MTC.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Week 5 MTC

Hello everyone, 
Can you believe it that I have been in the Provo MTC now for 5 weeks, time is really moving just not all at once. I got my itinerary late last week and I am leaving for the Philippines on Sept 28th and I will be flying through Hong Kong to get to Manila Philippines where I will be staying at the Manila MTC in the Philippines for about a week we are not entirely sure yet how long we will be there but long enough to kind of get used to the Philippines and the culture and things like that because all I have really learned here in the Provo MTC is the language of Tagalog. Then after my time in the Manila MTC I will then enter my mission and the mission field itself I am very excited for that my mission is really going to be a reality! I also sewed by hand with a needle and thread for the first time ever let alone all by myself in the Provo MTC I had to patch up the back of one of my ties and I think I did an okay job probably not as good as Mom would have done but that's okay I am pretty good and problem solving and figuring things out and then trying and doing. I have figured out different things since I have been in the Provo MTC that I wouldn't have to do at home because I have a Mom that loves my so much like ironing, sewing and such but it is all good. I actually did a little bit of plumbing this week as well one or our shower drains got clogged sort of so I took part of the drain a part and cleaned it out with my hands because I did not have any tools with me of course some of the missionaries thought I was crazy but I didn't care it was just a little messy that's all but I took care of that so now all the water and soap runs down the drain a little better now. It is really exciting to think that be this time next week I will be traveling to the PHILIPPINES also a quick reminder that if you want to send anything to me at the Provo MTC in the states I would do it quick because they probably will not forward my mail to me in the Philippines because they do not want to pay the postage to send it over the ocean they will probably send it back to the sender after I am gone. I have learned and studied so much while I have been here at the Provo MTC but I am really excited to start teaching real investigators and learning all the about the Philippines and the people there. I hope that all is going well where ever you are and my Tagalog is okay we will see how they really speak it though in the Philippines that will be an exciting challenge I am sure but I am up for it. Did I already say I am really excited to go to the PHILIPPINES? Yes I think I did so do not forget it. 
With much love,
Elder Chilson      

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Week 4 MTC

Well I am up to four weeks now at the Provo MTC and I only have roughly two weeks left that is crazy. Most of your probably know but my Birthday was yesterday and now I am 19 I do not really feel any different but regardless I am now a little bit older and the oldest member of my district by quite a bit they are all 18 and wont turn 19 till sometime in 2017. I could not really control my schedule on my birthday but it was okay I had to go to class and study and all that but life goes on and it was also my first birthday away from home but we had a little party last night with my district so that day was a little bit more special than just a regular day I would have liked to at least listen to a little Mormon Tabernacle Choir but we are not even allowed to do that but that is all part of the fun here at the MTC there are rules here but a lot a mission in general is about sacrifice so I can do that I will not be able to serve a mission for ever so I need to embrace the time that I have now so I am willing to follow the rules and such. We did do something pretty cool this week or at least I thought it was pretty cool we practiced some door approaches and I thought that they were a lot of fun it is basically talking to people, going to peoples houses talking to them and just being friendly and sharing a message about Jesus Christ among other things but it made things so real for me the MTC is not exactly the Philippines but I am practicing what I am going to be doing here so I can be ready for everything the Philippines has to offer so I thought that was a lot of fun. Another quick story so most of you know that I went to Brighton High School and played sports for Brighton mainly football though so I have Brighton apparel with me and it is so weird because there is a Brighton in UT evidently so a lot of people think that I am from UT because a lot of the missionaries here are form UT so I have to explain to them that I am from NY and most people here do not know much about NY unfortunately so I tell them that I live about 30 mins from Palmyra and then they get a general picture where I am from but I just think that is really funny maybe you wont. Also they have been doing a lot of construction around my building where I live ever since I got here which has been really annoying but it is okay sort of like at home I remember they were working on our roads when I left. Regardless my Tagalog is getting better everyday and I study hard and that is about all I can do here continue to prepare for the people in the Philippines. That is about all I have to say I think for here at the MTC this week. I love you all a lot! 
Elder Chilson


Thursday, September 8, 2016

Week 3 MTC

So I made it to my 3rd week at the Provo MTC I am halfway done with my time here at the Provo MTC that is crazy. To start off I have some fun news so for those of you who are not familiar with MTC standards the Residence Halls (where I sleep) are not coed they are Sisters only and Elders only, but all of this changed yesterday. Sister Missionaries moved to the top floor of our building so now I am in the only coed building at the Provo MTC which is cool the Elders in my building were all afraid that we were going to have to pack up and move out but we wont but there is a lot more security in the building that we have to go through with our access cards which is really annoying there are Sisters only areas and Elders only areas but its all good I just thought I would share that, something different. I have been studying Tagalog a lot and learning different kinds of verbs that is mostly what we do for class as well as practice teaching lessons to various investigators and that has been fun using Tagalog and figuring what the investigators are telling us but I am getting better at it. I have still been playing Bball/ lifting weights/running during my exercise time everyone keeps saying that I am going to loose a lot of weight in the Philippines but we will see I will loose some muscle for sure. I have gotten better at ironing I think I have not set a shirt on fire yet but I think that I am doing ok with that my shirts look better that some of the other shirts that Elders wear here. I also sang another solo for my district this week for a devotional we had which was cool they still like my voice a lot but maybe that is because they do not know anything really about music??? Probably not I can sing pretty well singing in Taglaog though is really weird and I thought singing in French was weird but No singing Tagalog is weirder. Also if anyone has some free time Google Chad Lewis he is a Mormon who played Tight End for BYU after his mission and played 9 years in the NFL he was our big devotional speaker Sunday night and it was a glorious surprise I have listened/read some of his works and he is a great speaker in person it was really cool to hear from him and yes he did talk about more that just football. I think that is all I have for this week my schedule is pretty much the same here but I seem to continue to move forward which is good and I will continue to improve to serve the Lord as best as I can. 
Love 
Elder Chilson     

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Week 2 MTC

So I made it through my second week at the MTC not much as changed here me and my new companion are beginning to start clicking I think yesterday we taught a lesson and I think it was the most Tagalog I have spoken in a lesson yet which is good. A little sample of Tagalog for you, Nagpaptotoo ang Aklat ni Mormon kay Jesus Cristo ( That means the Book of Mormon testifies of Jesus Christ) And I can testify that it does as well. My schedule this was pretty similar to last week so I had exercise time where I play Bball/ lift weights I study a lot (like 4 hrs a day no joke) I have classes that I go to generally there are two classes a day that I go to but sometimes there is only one and they are 3hrs long so that can be long but I can say that this week overall was more fun I thought but I cannot really explain why but that it is sinking in more now that I am actually a missionary and for me that is awesome. I am like the only guy in my district that likes going to choir and I am ok with that I like it a lot and I enjoy our choir director as well he is pretty cool/funny 
A little excitement that happened this week though (Any Girl that is reading this I apologize in advance) but had bed bugs in some of the dorms that we sleep in but there are not any in my bed that is for sure but some other missionaries got bit but they are doing fine just thought I would share that. My Tagalog is getting better for a lot of this week we learned a lot of different kinds of verbs "MAG, I, IN, UM" verbs whihc are all simialr but conjugated differently but its all good lots of practice is all that is required and I work hard. Unfortunately I do not have any really fun stories yet like I will when I go to the Philippines but that is why I am here at the MTC the prepare to go to the Philippines so I can have the most amazing time when I get there. Just know this that I am doing well and I love this gospel and I hope that I will have more to say next week because the next time I email you I will be at my half way mark wow time sure is moving. 
Until Next Week 
Love 
Elder Chilson      





Thursday, August 25, 2016

MTC Week 1

Hello Everyone,
I am at the MTC in Provo UT and it is a completely different world than NY IDK if all has heard about my crazy trip getting to UT but I got on a plane and flew to JFK from Rochester no problem and then of course we had plane troubles in JFK so we boarded the plane and they could not fix the problem so we got off the plane and waited for several hours until they fixed the plane and then long story short I got into Salt Lake City at about 2:30am UT time. Then I stayed with the Morgeneggs at their sons house and then they took me to the MTC and then I got my name tags and here I am I am a Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The first couple of days were long for many reasons all of which I cannot talk about at this point, the short version is that I got a new companion two days ago so things got off to a bit off a rough start but no worries because my new companion is a Potato Farmer from ID so you know that we are going to get some work down and put in our hours and he is fine. It was a tough that me and my first companion did not make it a week but all is well I can handle it. 
My schedule as you can image in pretty full it consists of exercise time where I usually play basket ball but I have also lifted weights but they do not have the equipment that I would like to use or the amount of weight that I am used to lifting but it is ok. Then I have 2 3hr classes a day generally where I learn Tagalog and that has been fun it is a very different language than I am used to that is for sure everything is backwards in the structure so it has been a little difficult but its all good I have arguably the best teacher here Bro West he served in Naga and we have the same name Nathanael so I think that it was meant to be. It is frustrating because I know the lesson very well in English and I have taught them before so to only use Tagalog has been a little tough we have been teaching lessons to one investigator in particular since last Friday I think it caught me a little by surprise because I knew not much Tagalog but it will just take time so I just have to be patient and basically if I am not in class I am studying either scriptures Tagalog or preparing a lesson with my companion or stuff like that. Sometimes we have devotionals and stuff like that and I cannot begin to describe our Sunday schedule it is crazy but in a very good way. It is all good here the food is not that bad either.  Branch Presidency thinks that I am awesome so I thought I would put that in there. I sing in the MTC Choir as well and last Sunday we got to sing with/hear the Nashville Tribute Band and that was really cool. My district is pretty cool to I am the only one from NY and most of the other Elders are from UT or out west but it is all good. I am like the only one in my district with any musical talent which is fun everyone in my district think I have an amazing voice and everyone is surprised that I have never taken voice lessons (Thanks Dad for the musical genes) 
Well IDK if there is anything else I should say it has only been my first week at the MTC my P-Days are Thursdays (I got here on Wed so they did not give me a P-day last Thurs it is just how it is) so I will be emailing on those days and if you want more personal conversation feel free to write letters to me I promise I will respond but I would love to hear from you but I am doing well and am excited to be serving the Lord in the Philippines
Love,
Elder Chilson