|Arriving At The Temple At Six O'clock|
|The Temple Annex|
As I begin the blog this week, I am faced with the same dilemma I’m always faced with: “What can I say that will be meaningful and not redundant?” I have many faith promoting experiences in the Temple each week, but to express them in words is not always possible nor the right thing to do. As a result I run the risk of giving a travelogue and in a way, misleading you about what we are really doing on this mission. Please bear with me and know that the majority of our time is spent in spiritual activities.
I was working with a young man this week who comes to the Temple each Thursday. He is maybe in his late twenties (hard to tell - most Filipinos look much younger than they are) and was energetic and excited to be in the Temple. I was later told that it takes eight to ten hours for him to travel each way to get here. He rides buses all night to get here by six am and again travels all night to get home. I was inspired to hear of his commitment and sacrifice.
Another brother, who lives about as far away, comes and serves in the Temple all days, every week. He stays in the Patron Guesthouse across the street, and is provided with food by the kindness of others.
|Youth Temple Trip|
These are only the sacrifices that I know about. As the weeks go by, I will undoubtedly hear of other stories which will help strengthen my testimony. Of the thousands of people who come to the temple each week, there are thousands of stories of strong faith and commitment.
Each Saturday many ward youth groups come to the Temple to perform baptisms. The Temple is not located close to any train or bus lines, so arrangements to get the youth to the Temple are made by chartering a “Jeepney”. There are large air-conditioned buses in the Philippines, but the “Jeepney” is the most affordable and the most common form of transportation in Manila. The tricycle and the taxi are also affordable.
The “Jeepney” has two benches along the two sides and some loose plastic chairs down the middle. No seatbelts of course. Even without the plastic chairs there is little or no knee space. No windows, just openings with some canvas covers if needed. Some passengers hang out the window openings and others cling onto the back door opening. They are almost always full to overflowing. To compensate for the ugly interior, the exterior of the “Jeepney” is light hearted and colorful.
I took the opportunity yesterday to photograph one of the youth groups who had arrived at the temple in their chartered transportation. Any of you out in “blogland” who are leaders of youth groups should hire a “Jeepney” and attract better attendance for your Temple trips.
|Alone In The Parking Lot|
|It Does Have A Religious Theme|
|Open In The Back|
|Hold On At The Rear|
|All Over The Place|
|No Two Alike|
That’s all for this time.
Mom and Dad
Elder and Sister