Sunday, August 25, 2013

Love, Sister Jensen.

Dear Family and friends, 
Well.. Raise your hand if you thought it would be exciting to go to a third world country? Me too... Then I got here. hahaha I discovered it is super exciting. I touched a cockroach on accident this week.. It was in the dark laundry room on the broom I was grabbing.. Yeah.. I freaked out because I knew what I was touching. I also found a dead lizard in my purse. There are aunts everywhere... But! I am learning to live my life here. I really got to relate to one of the inactive members here this week. Her family was persecuting her and threatening her for her faith in the church. I was able to understand just enough of that to know and then to relate Moroni and his struggles to her. It was a powerful experience for me. It was just after my companion and I had a fast. Sooo.. Fasting works!!! It really does. I know that it does and that God strengthens us through fasting. It is still very different here and many different things, but I am accepting it as my life over the next year and a half. 
I miss you all, I love you all. 
Sister Jensen

Monday, August 19, 2013

Living the Filipino Kind of Life.

Laundry day!  

 The Bay Walk with Sister J.

"I hope you got all my pics. I really like the green veggie in the pic. It is called Siode (not sure on the spelling). It is good. I think you would like it mom. It is one of my favorites. they also have squash here which I love. The couples missionaries here are really nice and good to us. This morning Sister Doyle brought us bread and rice cakes. She also gave me peanut butter. It was good and I have been enjoying it. It is my comfort food. They have peanut butter here. I guess you can buy a big thing of it for about 10 dollars, but I haven't exchanged my money and I don't want the responsibility of the credit card yet. Sister Doyle is going to get some for me and just give me part. We don't have a ton of money to live off of here, but I will see exaclty how far it goes after this month and decide what to do. Mostly I really miss peanut butter m and ms and gronola bars."

First Baptism.

"The girl I baptized (not literally) is 9 years old. She is a member of a part member family. Her grandmother goes to church and that is where it all started. Her brother is also inactive. She is very sweet and reminds me of Cianna. Except Filipino. She is the one in white in the pics. She is very knowledgeable about the gospel and loves candy. Her and her sister call me barbie. They are really cute. She likes teletubbies. She is sweet and silly and flirts with one of the presidents sons ahaha. She was running away from him at her baptism. He was teasing her he was a part of the family or something. Her favorite answer to questions is siempre with a smile. "

A's family and pictures of her baptism:

Sunday, August 18, 2013


Hello everyone!

How are you all? Well, this little Idaho girl is still missing the farm and home. If there is one thing I have learned there is no place like America. If only I had some ruby slippers. I have also learned some other things as well like that the more I love the people here the less I miss home. It is true. I pray each day to love the people more because as I love them as Christ would I forget my worries and cares and just love them and try to do all that I can for them. Well, there was a typhoon very near to here and it flooded Masinloc. It is interesting to see the people's reactions. They either turn away from Christ and God or towards them. They are either in despair or are happy despite their circumstances. It broke my heart to see them. The other day I was talking to a sister named Larissa about missing home. She asked if I missed my family. I said that I did and she told me it was a sacrifice. I said it was, but I also realized what an important sacrifice it is. I realized the wonderful message I have for the people about the gospel. Although I cannot help them and even if I could Christ can help them more than I can. He can give them everlasting happiness. Anything I could give them physically would only be momentary happiness. I am thankful for the sacrifice of my family back home and all they do to support me here on my mission. I know it is a sacrifice for all of us for me to be here. I am really thankful for all your prayers and know that God hears them and answers them. I have felt strengthened and uplifted here because of them. Thank you. Things are very different here, but I am growing to love it. I met with my mission President this last week. He has such a happy and loving personality that no one can help but smile when you are around him. This next week I will head to the mission home for meeting our goals and training follow up. Oh, and I do not have to pay extra for packages.. You just have to pay a lot for them to get here. Just so you all know. There is a shipping company called LBC that ships here for less. I do miss some of the comforts of home, but know that I love you all than material things and love letters. I am trying to learn more about letter correspondence. I also get dear elders :). They are free for you to send and free for me to receive so they are great. If you send me any this next week I will get them when I go to the mission home. I love you all, thank you for everything :). I had my first baptism this week. She was so cute. There is so much joy in seeing someone become a member of the church and following the example of Jesus Christ. Stay safe. Love you!
Sister Jensen

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Week 2 in the Philippines

Howdy Everyone,
That is me trying to bring back a little bit of home to myself. Things are very different here. Yesterday we got rained into our apartment. Yes, rained. Lots of Masinloc was flooded. Before we were told to stay home I was in water up to the middle of my calves. A special thanks to my mom for the crocs I had and also the powder because I have a rash from the heat, but it is all good and the powder is helping a lot haha. Anyways, the rainy day was just what I needed. I was a little distraught about not being able to write my family and hope no one was worried. It was a nice day to catch up on the house  and of course the area book! I have been missing Idaho this week and just America in general, but I like it here. The people are nice. Here are some strange facts for you all: When they eat chicken they cut it  up with bones and all into chunks. Everything is Filipino size. The snacks are about half of our funsize snacks most of the time. They eat the gills of the fish... I haven't done it yet, but I know I will soon because I saw one of the other sisters preparing it. They put on face bleach to be whiter. They eat with a spoon and a fork. No knife. They say "Tao po" instead of knocking. There are little tiny snack stores everywhere. Literally everywhere.Umbrellas are used for the sun as well as the rain. Everyone will stare at you if you are white/laugh/smile/wave, which isn't very Filipino. No one really waves. They point at things with their lips. They wiggle their eyebrows up so say yes and say nuh uh, which is confusing for me as an American because sometimes I think they are saying no and then I realize they are saying yes. Well.. I am struggling with the language and things are not easy, but I am persevering to try to do what I was sent here to do. I love you all. Feel blessed to live in America. You will never realize how fortunate you are. We are planning on having our first baptism this Saturday. Her name is A. and she reminds me of Cianna. Love you all! Oh, and I am sorry to say that I probably will not write anyone letters because I heard it is really expensive to send them. Packages are also very expensive to receive so my advice is just to not. So... If you write me one I will love it to death because really they make my month. I am considering writing back, taking a picture and sending it over e-mail. Then giving it later. Well... I love you all. MIss you all. Miss America, corn, and IDaho, but am learning a lot here.
Love always,
Sister Jensen

Monday, August 5, 2013


Sister Jensen's first email from the Philippines:

Helllloooo Everyone!

Wow! This week has been so crazy. To make a long story short I have a native  Filipino as my companion. Our area is Masinloc and we have two other sisters living with us. Before the Elders lived in our apartment and I have learned that Elders are the same everywhere. Therefore the apartment was nothing short of scary looking when I got there... There is a couple here and the Sister helped us clean our house up and it was much better after that. We have a shower and a toilet, so I am happy. I have ridden in a tricycle many times, a jeepney just today, and a bus. There is rice for every meal and the Filipinos eat with a spoon in place of a knife. I think I have mastered the spoon technique. The members here are nothing short of inspiring. The Branch President lives up a hill that has lots of trash scattered everywhere. His house has a dirt floor. He is a fisherman and goes out fishing at night. His two youngest girls are named Janine (different spelling, but hey) and Jasmine, so it's just like home! They are very cute. They hold my hands when we go to lessons with their mom. The Branch President and his wife have both spent WHOLE days helping us find people to talk to and introducing us to members and less active members. I know they make many sacrifices for the gospel and I am touched by their obedience and perseverance. They have so little but they give so much. The other day we hiked behind his hill to get to some people. It was just like hiking in Idaho... Except more green! I loved it. People sometimes say things about mosquitoes, but in my opinion they are nothing like Idaho mosquitoes. I have only been bit twice. In Idaho I would have had all the blood sucked out of me. Everyone stares at me here and all the little girls think I look like barbie. It is a little weird, but it brings more people to our lessons because most of them start with the nanay (usually grandma) and the little girls see me and they go tell there mom that barbie is in their house. I think I look nothing like barbie, but they do. The other day we had a lesson with a lady whose husband is a rice farmer. She lives in a little hut next to the field. Yesterday we ate like queens at Sister K's house. She is our neighbor and she is very kind. She made us our first couple of meals here. Last night she made us spaghetti (Yay!) and we had a fruit salad. I had guava and papaya! They are not how I imagined they would taste, but I love fruit! I love it here! the people are all nice. Yesterday we basically took all of the mutual group with us visiting members and  less actives. We went to one of the boy's home who blessed our sacrament. It was a simple home. I came to find out that his mom is not a member and his dad, I never even saw. HIs dedication to the church inspires me. I know it would be so hard to be the only member in the states, but here with so little in the first place it must be a great sacrifice. The youth are so willing to help out, more so than at home I think and yet they have so little. Many of them want to be missionaries. They are definitely pioneers in my eyes. I don't talk much here because I am still learning, but I am beginning to understand more and more and my companion includes me more and more. Hopefully I will be fluent in no time, but until then, I am just happy to be here and serving the Lord in what way I can. I am trying very hard and  I am learning lots. Yes, it is hot here. Yes it is rainy. It is the rainy season and whoever said Filipinos didn't use umbrellas lied. They use them for rain and sun. There are racks outside of stores for them. They are obsessed with being white like Americans are with being tan. The food is great. I like it a lot! The other day my companion made teraki chicken, but it wasn't called that. I loved it. Overall it is great to be here. I love you all!

Mahal Kita!

Sister Jensen

The long plane ride to the Philippines.

Just after arriving in the Philippines. (Jasmine looks a LITTLE tired haha).

Sister Jensen's first sunday in the branch in Masinloc

Mom asked Jasmine if these pictures were taken in church, to which Jasmine replied, "Yes, the branch president wanted pictures so I took them. It was so weird because we do not do that in the US hahaha."

"This Is my companion Sister J. and also they boys and girls that went with us to visit people."

Sister Jensen's first missionary roommates in the Philippines.