Sunday, April 7, 2013

well dad you asked the golden question. how do they celebrate easter in the prepare y ourselves for a wild ride. this whole past week was whats called holy week. because this is a mostly catholic place its population all celebrates all the catholic traditions that most countries in south america celebrate... but with some philipino twists. i dont know all the traditions... but i will talk about one that is especially.... well different... and sad. on the friday before easter sunday there is whats called byernes santo...on this day they celebrate or comemorate the crucifixion of the savior. only here in the philippines they do it in an especially gruesome way. in a place called pampanga (close to manila) and in other places around the philippines they have people who actually have themselves crucified. yes.. this is done by people that have committed especially heavy sins and their belief is that through their own suffering on the cross that they will be forgiven of their sins. so they re inact what is read in the bible... they are flogged... followed by carrying their cross and actually being nailed and hung on the cross. this is something only practiced here in the philippines. on this friday, it was virtually a ghost town. people closed their shops people arent to drive tricies or work, you cannot sell or buy or eat meat, and theres   specially masses held in comemoration of the crucifixion of the savior. 

now here in roxas i didnt see anyone nailed to the cross but we did see some crosses being carried. this is not practiced by everyone in the philippines but it is something that everyone knows about and that most people watch on tv. hard to believe that people actually do that isnt it?

other than that things on actual easter it didnt seem any different than any other sunday. people are more focused on the crucifixion than the ressurection i didnt notice any special traditions on the actual day of easter. 

it makes me very very grateful for doctrine and covenants section 19 where we learned "i god suffered these things for all that they might not suffer if they would repent." we dont have to nail ourselves to the cross to recieve a remission for our sins. we just need to change our lives. we just need to try harder and ask for forgiveness and improve each day.. its sad to think that thats really what people understand and believe about the sacrifice of the savior. thats really what they believe they need to do in order to recieve forgiveness. i remember a talk given in the mtc about repentance i dont remember who gave it but he said that he wants to be in the hall of fame for repenting. it was an interesting statement but i think he just meant that he plans on using the atonement fully in his life and repenting for all things unstead of the other option.. suffering like the savior did if we choose not to repent. 

i have a new companion by the way. his name is elder samer. hes from bicol (a province in the southern part of luzon...) this is gonna be an awesome cycle. noones counting but i only have 3 cycles left thats crazy. i cant believe that. anyways im greeat here very happy. i love you all... and i miss you.. elder landeen

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