Family Home Evening –October 21, 2013


She looked a bit surprised at Elder Hall’s words, but nodded her head in the affirmative. Later in the day we talked to Sister Marz and Elder Hall asked her the same question. She also agreed.

I guess we had better ask the Toledo 1 sisters, too. And Brother Marven.

We texted the sisters and they agreed to come. Then we started to feel some stress. What would we feed them? What would we do for a lesson? What would we do for games? Would they really come? Six days and numerous texts later, the day arrived. We fixed rice, chicken, and no-bake chocolate cookies.

Sister Marley insisted on bringing a coconut milk drink called buko pandan, and her delicious white pudding called maha blanca. Actually she offered to cook the whole meal, but we talked her out of it. It would probably have been a better meal if she had cooked it, but after all, we were the ones who invited everybody.

Sister Marz and her niece came first. They said that the others were following, as they could not all fit on the same “motor” or motorcycle. Then her mother and father, and her sister-in-law with her two children arrived.

Brother Marven drove up on his “motor” and came in the back door. He had balut or cooked duck eggs which have been incubated for fourteen days. He thinks all new missionaries should eat balut to entertain the others in the group.

In the Philippines, balut eaters prefer salt and/or a chili, garlic and vinegar (white or coconut sap) mixture to season their eggs. The eggs are savored for their balance of textures and flavors; the broth surrounding the embryo is sipped from the egg before the shell is peeled, and the yolk and young chick inside can be eaten. All of the contents of the egg may be consumed, although the white may remain uneaten; depending on the age of the fertilized egg, the white may have an unappetizing cartilaginous toughness.

The sister missionaries had eaten balut before. They were good sports and ate some this time too. We did not. The others were more than willing to eat our share.

Sister Marly, with her daughter and daughter-in-law came too late for the balut.  Marven called her “mar late” the rest of the evening.

Elder Hall conducted the lesson, Sister Marz led the music, and the sister missionaries beautifully described Family Home Evening and its purpose. Elder Hall introduced the Articles of Faith and gave each person an Articles of Faith card, either English or Cebuano .

I will repeat the First Article of Faith in Cebuano. During the next thirteen weeks, I will memorize all thirteen in Cebuano. If I can do it in Cebuano, you can do it your preferred language. We will meet again in thirteen weeks to report.

Brother Marven announced that Elder Hall would give prizes.

Sister Reyes spoke up.

Now we are going to play a game.

She passed out pieces of paper and asked everyone to write something on the paper that they would like the person sitting to their right to do. She then gave directions to pass the papers to the right ten times, back to the let a few times, to the right, and to the left. She then asked everyone to open their paper. Everyone had their original paper. (Don’t ask me how she kept track.)

One person had to sing, another had to dance. Sister Reyes then explained that we should never expect someone to do something we would not like to do ourselves.

Elder Hall looked at the group.

That’s in the scriptures.

Do unto others as you would have them do unto to you?


Then where?

Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days. (Ecc 11:1)

We had five investigators, one less active member and two new converts in the group. We hope they will all be “desirous to come into the fold of God, and be called his people” after but a few days and remain there for all the days of eternity. (Mosiah 18:8)



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