Sunday, December 29, 2013

A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to All!

The Holiday seasons are almost over! We can finally get to work!
Christmas was pretty cool over here in the Philippines. We just went around and visited members and pretty much ate more food then I have ate in my life! Members just make food all day long just to make sure if someone comes over that they can eat as much as they can. We also managed to get two lessons in which was awesome! Elder Strobelt is so awesome, the whole day he was just like " I'm sick of just eating food and wasting time, lets go teach some lessons!" hahahah. I am so lucky! Towards the end of the week we were really able to get to work and ended up teaching a lot of lessons. I am ready for the season to be over so we can finally get everyone to focus and start working! Work, Work, Work, thats the secret!
We have two investigators right now. Sister Annabel and Sister Elinor that are progressing so well right now, they are reading, praying, and coming to church! Their baptism is on the 25th of january and they are really trying to prepare themselves for it. The ward is really working hard to make them feel comfortable and fellowship them also, they are doing a great job. I am so excited that I might potentially have a baptism! It is such a blessing to teach someone from the beginning and watch them progress and see the Gospel bless their lives. We are working really hard to prepare them, and make sure that they are ready.
It has been mentioned that I need to starting sharing more random stories and experiences here in the Philippines, that usually wouldn't happen in America.
So this week...
I was at a members house for Christmas eating dinner. We were finishing up and I had to fart really bad... yes you know were this is going... My stomach hurt so bad! So I just tried to let out a little bit so some of the pressure would go away, but that turned out as a bad idea... I ended up farting so loud! I could not believe it! There was a ton of members there! They all just looked at me for a few seconds and they just all busted out laughing! haha. The people in the Philippines just don't care and are just the most fun loving people!
Yesterday Elder Strobelt and I were tracting and we came across a few people standing outside of their house, and so we went up to them and starting talking and ask them what they were doing. In less then two minutes we were in chairs scarfing down food! The people here are so freaking hospital it is awesome! We barely even know these peoples names and we were all eating food and talking like we were all best friends! They were having a birthday party for someone in their family, and they were just so happy the two good looking white guys showed up. They took pictures with us and all that stuff! haha it just amazes me how people can just be so friendly! Then of course we shared a message with them.
Lastly this week, which most of you may be suprised, but it happens all the time I just have never mentioned it in my e-mails. During one of our lessons my new companion was trying to share part of the lesson, when the lady we were teaching just plops down her shirt and start breast feeding her baby. Hahahahah! My companion just started to studder and didn't really know what to do so I just took over. Oh man it was so funny. It happens all the time here in the Philippines, and its just a cultural thing here nobody cares.
Well I hope those gave you some good laughs. I hope you all had a good Christmas and will enjoy some more feasting for New Years!
Love you all, and I thank you all for your support, you guys are awesome!
Parker trying to be like Malone

We sent Parker this Jersey for Christmas

-Elder Kikel

Maligayan Pasko ( Merry Christmas ) (12/23/13)

Christmas time is here!! Wow I don't even feel like its Christmas all ready! I look at the schedule and see that Christmas is in two days, and I think... meh... ayos lang. Meaning its not a big deal. I am just worried how we are even suppose to be able to to teach! Everyone is going to be so busy with their Christmas activites! Just know when you are enjoying your jammies, eating your delicious food, and being all comfy like, Ill be in a hot room sweating, and doing my studies! hahah. That is okay cause thats what I want to do.
This last week has been pretty crazy and all over the place, just getting ready to train, to all the Christmas Parties, and Zone conferences that we have been having! Training! I am sure you all want to know how that has been going, oh, well let me tell you! My trainee is from Australia and his name is Elder Strobelt, and he doesn't know any Tagalog.... Oh boy... haha So its true people. I got a foreigner as my first trainee! It actually has been was awesome these last couple days serving with him. Elder Strobelt just wants to get out there and work, he is so pumped, and he is very obedient! He is just willing to do anything, and all he wants to do is speak Tagalog. He is not scared to do anything, he even asked me the second day we worked together. " Elder when am I going to lead the lesson?" What!? I didn't ask that question until I was maybe towards the end of my last area! He is so good! He has got a good attitude which is my favorite part. He is adjusting very nicely because he went to the Manilla MTC. He is a really cool guy, and we are all ready getting along. Training has been way fun, yes it has been difficult because of the language but I actually don't really care about that right now cause I know now that if we try our best the Lord will take care of the rest for us. I told Elder Strobelt. " If we are obedient, and have faith, and do our very best. We don't have anything to worry about and these next 12 weeks are going to be great." He is just so pumped he does so much stuff without even being asked or told to do it, he is trying to so hard to speak the language as much as he can, and to learn. I feel after these next 12 weeks he will progress in the language much faster then I have and I will start to be fluent. Who ever is there when I skype will probably get a little taste of Tagalog haha.
The work in our area this last week has been really slow because we have had all these Christmas parties and dinner appts. and also preparing for transfers. I feel like it is also going to be hard this next week also because of Christmas and New Years. We will try our best though, and try to enjoy ourselves at the same time! After the Holidays we plan to really dig deep and get this place going. I have to take advantage of this drive of my new companion while I can!
I want to give a special thanks to those Beehives I believe that sent me the Care Package from home! That was awesome! I didn't expect anything like that and it really brought a smile to my face. Plus the snack attack was good... I got sick again... haha worth it! I really appreciate the love and support you guys are giving me, and I am so grateful for all of it. I hope you all have a very merry Christmas!
Something I just wanted to share was that this last week I was pondering about my mission and the time that I have left and what I am doing here. The thought came to me as to how much of a blessing, opportunity, and honor, to serve a mission. I realized it is a HUGE blessing at this point in my life to be strengthen in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That fact that I have two years to study this gospel 24/7 is one of the greatest opportunities I have been given. There is so much to learn from the Gospel that can change our lives around, and all of it is just by reading the Book of Mormon. After starting to understand the Atonement and other Doctrines of Christ in my mission it is truly an Honor to represent our Savior himself and bear his name over my heart. Christ is in my heart, his name is en graven and can never be removed. I know to much now and things have changed, my views have changed, my actions have changed, and my understand has changed. Now, that is a blessing. I am grateful for this opportunity in my life and I am glad that I have another year and half to study as much as I can, and to learn. I feel that I will be one of those criers when its time for me to come home, which I feel will come very fast. I encourage all those who are feeling, thinking, or preparing for a mission that they should follow those promptings and feelings that they are getting, because if you will serve a mission with the right purpose and the right attitude, it will change your life. I don't feel like I am a kid anymore, I feel like I have much more to live up to now and I have many more responsibilities
when it come to the point when I return. I hope you will all make time especially on Sundays to study the scriptures, and the Doctrine of Christ. No one can take away your Knowledge.
I hope you all have a good week and a Merry Christmas!
Mahal Ko kayong lahat! mamamiss ko kayong lahat hanggang panihon ng Pasko. Mahal kayo ng Diyos. nagpapasalamat ako para sa inyong lahat! Maraming Salamat! Maligayan Pasko!
Elder Strobelt

-Elder Kikel

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Too Fast Too Furious!

Wow, I say it every single week, but these weeks are starting to just go by faster and faster! I can't believe it! 

So after a very inspiring workshop by our Beloved Mission President, I feel very inspired to train and I am very excited to train now, now worries. Everything he said pretty much came down to this point. "Elder... Don't worry about the language, be obedient, and have faith in God. Good Luck." hahah It is just ridiculously crazy how inspired that man is, I am glad I have the opportunity to serve under his authority. I have been told recently last year when a member of the Seventy came to the San Pablo mission to give a talk, hey told the missionaries that we had one of the best Mission Presidents in the World. Which I think is absolutely cool to think about. I am so happy to be hear at this point and time in my life, to serve, and to be a disciple of Christ 24/7. It is a tough thing to do but they blessings and happiness that you receive and that you see others receive are just crazy.
At that Trainers meeting I saw a lot of my batch that came with me from the MTC! I was so happy and excited for them! It is weird to think that I actually have some experience in the field now and I am going to be helping a brand new missionary to adjust. I feel old! In our mission we call it being a Tatay (Father) and when you are training it is your Anak (Child/Kid) When you start to become more experience in the field people will ask you "How old are you in mission?" its funny. I am totally fine getting a great privilege to live in this country and serve for another year and a half. Every now and then it hits me, that I am in a different country, different language, different culture, doing a work that is very strenuous, and 5000 miles away from home. Guess what... I am only 19. Ha I don't feel 19 thats for sure. Elders always talk about marriage and careers and all the grown up stuff, and I just all ways think " Shoot, thats something I have to start thinking about soon!" NO! hahah that is so weird!
The work this last week has been pretty slow because my companion wants to visit a bunch of members he doesn't really want to work really hard because he only has 1 transfer left and he goes home, so its been kind of sucky but I just hope my trainee just have the drive to work, and we will go deep into this Area. We actually have a few investigators that are really progressing and are coming to church. We have given them Baptismal Goal Dates, and they seem pretty excited. They have fellowshippers, and friends in the church, they have also been attending church activites! Everything is perfect we just need to makes sure to teach them what they need to know, and to help them progress and know that this church is true for themselves!
We have a bunch of Christmas Parties coming up with members, and as a mission, and all kinds of stuff it is really cool to see everyone get all excited for Christmas, I have really missed home yet or gotten home sick from seeing all of it, but I'm sure that I will on Christmas Day, thats okay I got some good people around me. Things brings me to the subect of Christmas. We all know the true meaning of Christmas, and I am not going to give a long boring speech about what the true meaning of Christmas is. So just go out there and do it! Show that you really know what the meaning of Christmas is through Service!! Now knowing the blessings, and the good feeling you get from service I wished I would have done it a lot more back home. Just like Jesus said. " Whatever ye do to the least of your brethren, ye have opportunity  to serve those around you.  I know that if you do you will have an amazing experience.
Also one last thing, I want to try to leave a spiritual thought in my E-mails home and I have been failing at that lately.
Recently from the instructions of our Mission President to study one attribute of Christ the we more want to apply in our lives, I have been studying about Virtue. Weird for a guy right? There is so much more to Virtue then most people know. But, I want to touch more on an aspect of Virtue, which is Self-Mastery. If we can learn how to gain Self-Mastery over ourselves, thoughts, and actions. We can truly be blessed in our lives, and the lives of our families. We can avoid so many problems, and sorrows in our lives. Through Self-Mastery we can fortify ourselves against temptations, that we cannot fall off the foundation from which we are built upon. (Heleman 5:12)  I hope that you will all strive to obtain Self-Mastery in your own lives.
Well thats all folks, I hope you all have a very very happy Christmas! I probably get the chance to send out an E-mail right before Christmas! Have fun!
This is a picture of all of the Elders in my batch that are training!

-Elder Kikel

Monday, December 9, 2013

Training to be a trainer

So the news is out. I will be Training this next transfer!

Oh man, my 4th transfer and I am training all ready! My Trainer trained at his year mark, I am not ready! hahah I have only been in my area for 1 transfer ( 6 weeks).  Oh boy should this be interesting! I did not expect this. I thought I was going to be with my companion for another 2 months. Wow, this is crazy. Well by this time next week I will be getting ready for a new companion, and training. I will most likely stay in the area that I am in now. I could potentially have 6 months here in Lucena. Wow man do I have some work ahead of me. I know that the Lord will provide and help me to accomplish this task. The good ol' 1 Nephi 3:7 right?

Well now that we are all giddy and excited because good ol' Kikel here has taken off the Trainee paints and put on the Big Boy Trainer pants lets hear the news of the Area I will probably be working in. 

So work was slower this last week and we were not able to reach our goals, I got sick on day and my companion got sick the other day also. I was kind of disappointed in myself for letting this happen, but you know you are going to have your good weeks and your bad weeks. I am still trying to figure out how I can help this area to improve. We lack support from the ward so I think we are going to focus on talking to Bishop and the Stake President on how we can focus our efforts and get some baptisms. Thats pretty much it, not much has changed. 

The e-mails are starting to get smaller because now there is not so much new exciting stuff to report! Its all the same now. I am seeing the progress in myself as well as in other parts of missionary work and I can't wait to see what I can make of myself after a year! 

This last week was probably the fastest week in my mission. Even though I said it was slow we were working really hard this last week and it just went by so fast. 

Well thats all for today folks. Enjoy your day.
A beautiful landscape picture

Parker said this dog reminded him of Charlie(our dog)

This is a scary hanging bridge I don't like to cross!

Are they eating at a 7-11?(top left corner). Who new you could get a Slurpee in the Philippines!

Parker with his companion Elder Maiz - silly boys


-Elder Kikel

Monday, December 2, 2013


Hello everyone! Back again for some more news!
Oh man were to begin, so much to say but so few time!
So I guess I will start off with the work.
So this week has been a little bit slower because of the Mission Tour taking up a whole day. We were still able to get a decent amount of lessons in and teach some people. Honestly, it has been tuff. Elder Maiz and I have been just tracting/OYM day after day. It's very tedious and it is hard to have that drive and enthusiasm through out the day when you just get rejected over and over again. We are finding new investigators but they are having a hard time progressing, I am constantly evaluating myself to see what I can do to truly help these people increase their faith and keep their commitments! I always told myself, " Man this area is so much harder then my last" but then a missionary told me in an e-mail that there is no such thing as a hard area, its all about the attitude you have and trying to improve the area. Which I truly believe to be true, I have really been trying so hard to really get this area to have some success, it had been proving difficult. I still have a lot to learn, and I am grateful for this challenge in my mission because I am learning so much from it. I am doing my best to not get discouraged and just keeping on working. I know there is a reason for why I am hear.
So now for the exciting stuff! yay! The Mission Tour!
So the Mission Tour was absolutely amazing! We just literally got spiritually fed from on high! Elder Nielson is a really cool guy, and his wife is really funny. Elder Neilson is a Area President, in the Quorum of the Seventy, and a General Authority! It was so cool to be able to shake his hand and talk to him face to face. Our Mission President made this event a very big deal and now I know why! Just thing things he would talk to us about were so inspiring and I learned so much, and I just kept getting thoughts and feelings as to what I could do to help my area! He also went into very deep doctrine on some topics which just absolutely blew my mind, and you know its true because a General Authority is telling you it. He also did a thing where we can ask any question we wanted too, and he would answer them. For two hours we spent asking questions, and most of them deep doctrinal questions that people always want to know. It was really cool. Just was nice to see the we were able to have a discussion with him and participate then just sit and listen to him, which we also did. Then it was funny to see him talk to our Mission President like he was a missionary or something, because you know, our Mission President has a lot of power and authority so we are always scared and nervous around President. But, to see someone with more power and authority speak to him was funny. It was truly an amazing experience and I will always remember it. I learned to much about the Enabling Power of the Atonement, it help me to realize the I always need to study the Gospel, as well as all of us. We can always continue to learn and grow in this life.
Living in my apartment is a blast, the other Elders just love to work out, so we do crazy work outs everyday and just love doing it together. I have a new nickname here in the mission which I have never heard before. People are starting to call me the Kikelmeizer, haha I don't know where that came from but hey it works. I am starting to really open up and just get to know everyone! It is a lot more fun the way and you just start to enjoy your mission when you are comfortable around everyone! Even though the work has been difficult I am just really enjoying my mission right now and I am just so grateful for everything that I go through and everything that I am learning! Man I am changing so much it is so weird.
anyways thats pretty much all I can think of right now. I want to send you guys a attachment of one of my absolute favorite talks. It is a talk by David A. Bednar talking about the Characters of Christ. When I first heard this talk it blew my mind, and I just wanted to be a better person. Please take the time to read it and study it. I promise you by the time you are done readying you will want to improve on your Christlike attributes. It just makes you want to serve.
I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and I can't believe Christmas is all ready coming up!
Elder Maiz and I at the Mall
I finally have some scenery in my area! It is so beautiful here in the Philippines!
Just the regular missionary tracting life!

Have a great day everyone!
-Elder Kikel

Monday, November 25, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Phew! Time is just flying by! I can't believe it! Just been working so hard lately!
So the report.
Elder Maiz and I have spent this whole last week tracting 3 or more hours a day at least trying to increase our teaching pool. We have new investigators but some of them we are not to sure about. It has been really tough trying to teach good quality lessons and to be able to finish on time to make it to the next appt. Our investigators live all over the place and since Elder Maiz and I are almost out of money we walk, or almost run everywhere! Things are getting better and I am trying really hard to make something happen over here! Our numbers this week were better then last week. We have a few more Baptismal Goal Dates and so we are pretty excited for those but then again we are not to sure how committed these people are to be baptized, so thats something we have to find out. We have a few investigators that want to be baptized so bad, but there are just things in the way that prevent them from going to church and so they can't be baptized! Arghhhah... aggravating.
I gave a blessing this last week to one of the sons of our investigators. It was kind of cool actually. We when were teaching this family right when we started they told us that their son was sick and I felt the prompting to tell Elder Maiz that we needed to give him a blessing. During the lesson I was trying to find a good time to bring it up, because they are not members and don't really know what  Priesthood blessing is, so of course they would never ask for one. I wasn't able to find an appropriate time to ask if they would like a blessing. After we were almost done with the lesson the father walk in the house, and he is the reason they are not able to go to church because he doesn't like us, and doesn't really like it when we teach to his family. I was like "Perfect!" and the prompting was stronger and I just decided to kind of interrupt and ask the mother if she would like us to give a priesthood blessing to her son. She was very happy, and really wanted us to do it. So we gave the blessing and the father was watching, so I am hoping and I have faith that this witness will help soften his heart, and allow us to teach to him and his family so they can all be baptized!
Okay so the Apartment and the people I am living with, I haven't said much about that yet. So I live with the Zone Leaders as you know, and we also have a new Zone Leader, Elder Boyd. He is really cool and is a great example, he works so freaking hard its ridiculous. He is a really good missionary, he has been here for almost 2 weeks and has all ready improved the area. Oh man! the water here is ridiculous! It is like taking ice water out of the fridge! I am not even joking it is so cold! After almost 3 weeks of taking showers with it morning and night, it is starting to become refreshing at the same time. Especially cause I am starting to work out every morning! Elder Boyd, Elder Inlayo, and I all just love working out so we made a work out plan, we made our own weights, and we are eating way healthy! Its freaking awesome! Every morning we all wake up and just go crazy doing circuits and lifts in the morning, it makes my day so much better and I feel so much better through out the day. I have all ready lost almost 20lbs since I have been here in the Philippines. I didn't look like it at first because all my muscle turned into fat, but one of the Elders has a scale and I weighed myself. Under 200lbs!? what!? crazy...
So quick funny story. Elder Maiz and I were out tracting at night and we came across a few guys on the street, and they were smoking. I was in such a good mood and I just didn't really care what they would think, I decided to OYM them about the Word of Wisdom. So in the best Tagalog I could I was telling them about the Word of Wisdom real briefly, basically just telling them we think smoking is not allowed! After I said this one of the guys looked at me and said, in English. " I don't like this! I throw it away." and he flicks his cigg hahaha! after it was all ready finished! hahah and then they all agreed to stop smoking and follow the Word of Wisdom. haha even though right after we left they pulled out another one. tsk.. tsk... tsk..
So tomorrow we have the Awesome opportunity to go to a Mission Tour! So basically this is when the whole mission gets together for pretty much a devotional! but, the speaking is the Area Seventy for the Philippines! Elder Neilson! Crazy! So he is going to talk to us about what we can do to improve our mission and what ever else he would like. So that is going to be really cool to experience that and also see all of my friends from the MTC and all the fun jazz! Also! I have some pretty cool news! I am one of the first to know and now you guys will be too! So this Sunday we had a visitor that came all the way from America... Santa Clause! hahah no... We had a man who is Filipino but works for the Church's financial department and is pretty high up there, his boss talks with the prophet about the Church's finance. He has been living in Provo for the last 33 years. So when I heard him speak perfect english I was a little surprised! He is a really nice guy, but the reason why he is all the way back here in the Philippines is because he has a dream that he wants to accomplish. He told us what his dream is... and his dream is to build a "BYU-like school here in Lucena, Philippines." What!? Thats freaking sweet! It will be the first LDS school in the Country I believe if he is able to accomplish this. He said the Church will not fund for more school because of the cost or something like that, but he wants to try and build a school where kids the live the poorer life here in the Philippines can still go to a good school, afford it, and be able to have thing atmosphere of a BYU like campus. So nothing for sure yet, but there could be something like that happening soon!
So a crappy thing happen to me last week while I was e-mailing! I lost all my pictures on my SD card! Noooooooooooooo!!!! Some virus or something erased all my pictures or something and I couldn't get it back! I was pretty bummed but oh well, what could you do?
Something I came across in church this week, is a few lines from the Hymn. The Lord is my light. it says. " The Lord is my light, the Lord is my strength. I know in his might, I'll conquer at length. My weakness in mercy he covers with power, and, walking by faith, I am blessed every hour." - I really enjoyed this and I hope you all do too.
A real quick spiritual experience that I had this week, is that we randomly came across a member as we were tracting and he invited us in and fed us. Then he proceeded to tell us his story of life and what he is going through right now. he just really needed someone to talk too. but, I just wanted to say that he is probably the most humble man I have ever met. I mean, here is this Father who has been through so much all ready in his life, he kids are falling away from the church, and treat him like dirt. He can barely provide for his family, but he has to sacrifice meals, showers, clothes, entertainment, pretty much everything just to make sure his family has a roof. He walks for hours every sunday just to go to church. Through all these things and many more, this man testifies to us that he recognizes the blessings in his life and he doesn't need anything more. He puts his life and the life of his family and the everything else in trust to the lord. And still this man still strives to serve others and help others! He wanted to go take us out for food because we looked tired, but didn't let him haha but man I just can't believe how humble and submissive he was to the will of the Lord! and the Faith that he had. It truly built my faith and testimony, just to see a man who has pretty much nothing, and turns it into a lot.

Well that's about it for this week, I hope you all enjoy Thanksgiving! I can't believe I left in July and its all ready Thanksgiving! It is so ridiculously fast! I hope all is well, and I love you all!
-Elder Kikel

Monday, November 18, 2013


Once again my Family and Friends its time for the Weekly Report!

So things here in Lucena are pretty much the same as my last area according to the work. I think the ward is a lot better and more willing to help us out, but we haven't really gotten any member present lessons. So that stinks.. Oh well, Elder Maiz and I are trying to gain the trust of members so that they will trust is with Referrals! So the work is still hard, I think it will always be hard, you know why? Because, SALVATION IS NOT A CHEAP EXPERIENCE! I look forward to reep the rewards of the fruit of my labors, I am not quite there yet. We have 3 Baptismal Goal dates in December so hopefully we can really help them to prepare themselves to be baptized on those days in December. One of them Jonathan was pretty prepared, he has been  taught a few times but since I was new we retaught him. I talked to him about the restoration a little bit and ask him some basic baptismal interview questions. He answered them all perfectly and he says he knows and wants to be baptized. Then he even worked with us after we taught him! Ha! That was something I wasn't expecting. He is a really nice kid and want to do the right thing, he even asked me if I had a facebook and when I would be returning home. So I think he added me on facebook haha. He name is Jonathan Javierto. So yeah we are just going to keep on keeping on! 

I gave a talk in Sacrament meeting and of course again I went way to long and spoke all in english, When I feel the spirit I just start to speak in english hahaha at first they were all excited to hear from me, but then I took to long and half of them couldn't really understand me so at the end of my talk I saw a lot of heads down and a lot of people not paying attention haha! When I sat down and went over my talk, I realized something, "Wow, I am a boring talker" so next time I need to keep it short and in Tagalog! 

The language has been getting better obviously because I am around Filipinos all the time! Except for now, One of the Elders in my apartment finished his mission and went home today, so I have a new Zone Leader and he is from Sandy, Utah. He is name is Elder Boyd. He is pretty cool. 

Well ya know, not a whole lot from me this week, just the same old, same old missionary stuff. Some days are super exciting and others are just not as much. 

Love all of you and hope things are good back home! 

Maybe in the next couple weeks ill throw a few Tagalog paragraphs in my letters. 


-Elder Kikel

Monday, November 11, 2013

Typhoon Survivor

Hey everybody!

 So first of all, once again I am safe and everything is well after the Typhoon. 

From what I know, the area that I was in during the Typhoon was kind of on the outskirts of the storm so we didn't really get hit hard. They was some crazy wind, and rain, but just some fallen trees, and stuff like that. Nothing crazy like what I have recently been hearing. I can't believe what has happened. Our mission President told us we needed to stay inside because there was a super Typhoon, so I was thinking we were going to be running around helping people evacuate and stuff. Nope, everyone is fine over here, no help needed. I remember thinking during the storm, " This is a Super Typhoon?". After hearing more about the Typhoon I was shocked to hear what happened and the destruction the came from it, and how big the Typhoon it was. For those who don't know, as missionaries here in the Philippines, we have no TV's no radios, no Smart phones, no nothing, to here about the news. We find these things out through rumors and members. The storm passed where I was at and we just went to work the next day. So everything is fine here. But, man first the Earthquake, and now this!? The Philippines is really getting hit hard. Always keep them in your prayers, there are many people suffering.

Well on a lighter note, I was TRANSFERRED! Yay... It was a interesting experience. I was transferred to an area called Lucena. If you type in Philippines, Lucena you could probably find the general location of where I am at. My new companion is Elder Maiz, he is Filipino! Oh man does he talk fast, I can barely understand his Tagalog, and he speaks basic English, so it is kind of hard to communicate with him. Since I have been with Elder Maiz I have realized that I can speak more Tagalog then I thought I could, it's crazy! He is really helping me to learn the language and I am helping him with his English. Elder Maiz is a really cool and nice guy, he goes home in 2 months, and has all ready admitted to me that he is starting to get a little trunky. I told him that I was going to help him work hard, have success, and enjoy the last few months of his mission. Hopefully I will be able to accomplish this. I feel like Elder Maiz and I will do great things together and we will get a long just fine. My new area is still a city but has more jungle life to what I was expecting when I came here. It was the first time I actually had to trek through the jungle to get to investigators houses, it was sweet! Shoes and pants, covered in mud. It was a cool experience. 

I had a really hard time though when I got here because I also live with the Zone Leaders and they are Filipinos also so all they do is speak Tagalog and I couldn't understand a word they were saying. Even though they welcomed me and were very friendly, and funny. For some reason I just felt so down, and overwhelmed. The Zone Leaders were tell me that this area sucks, and that its super hard here, and members to help us and stuff. I was just thinking I am never going to have any success! Plus, I got the package you guys sent me, and just went crazy on the candy. I got so sick that day and ended up throwing up all night and not eating for a while hahah so I was really physically weak and just not in the right mind set. Being in a new area, with a new companion, harder and more difficult challenges, just kind of overwhelmed me there for a little bit. On Sunday I decided to fast for strength and sensitivity of the spirit that I might be able to work hard in this area and have success. It's been hard lately, all of my batch that I came with from the MTC have all ready gotten baptisms and have great success, and people say they always get at least 1 baptism every transfer, and I haven't gotten any yet, or really had any immediate success yet, so I was just getting really down about all of it. During sacrament meeting on Sunday I was just thinking about all of this and how I am going to cope with it, and I remember I just felt the biggest feeling of comfort come over me, and the words coming to my head, and actually saying it out loud to myself. " Elder Kikel, Its okay." For some reason from these few words that came to my mind made all the stress and worries go away. I just felt that it doesn't matter what success I have or do not have, as long as I am trying my best to invite others to come unto Christ. I did receive strength and I felt the spirit working through me that day, and I felt God's love for me. Just those words... "Elder Kikel. Its okay" made all the difference, so I am just going to keep on pushin and hoping and having faith for the best! 

Elder Maiz and I have all ready made plans to work together to find new Investigators and turn this place around, so hopefully in the next few weeks we see some progress. Thanks for all the support, you guys give me, I love hearing from ya, and I am sorry if I don't reply immediately. I hope all is well for you all and I hope you enjoy  a happy Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.

I'll be working....

-Elder Kikel 
This is me and my new companion Elder Maiz


Saturday, November 9, 2013

Update from the San Pablo Mission home

Dear Parents,
The typhoon is passing beyond the western borders of the Philippines.  We are still getting rain and winds in our mission areas but all missionaries remain  safe and accounted for. We have received several offers of  parents wanting to send supplies to the people hardest hit.  President Peterson made a call to President Ardern of the Area Presidency regarding this.  President Ardern advised those wishing to help should make a generous contribution to the humanitarian fund on their tithing slips.  This fund is what the local leaders draw from to assist those in need to get the things they have urgent need of.  We thank you so very much for your prayers, for your generosity and for your willingness to help the Philippine people.  We know the Lord has watched over and protected the missionaries here in San Pablo Mission. Please continue to pray for those in areas south of us who were hardest hit with the effects of the typhoon.
Kindest regards,
Sister Hansen, Mission Secretary
          Philippines San Pablo Mission

Friday, November 8, 2013

Elder Kikel is safe from Typhoon Haiyan!

I received an email this morning from the San Pablo Mission regarding Parker, I thought I would post it just in case friends and family are worried. Keep the Filipino people in your thoughts and prayers. We know Parker will be out as soon as he is allowed helping the Filipino's where ever and however he can. 

Dear Parent,
We wanted to let you know that as of Friday, November 8, 2013 6:30 PM Philippine time, your missionary is safe and accounted for.  We know you are concerned about the typhoon.  The eye of the storm is south of us but because it is so large, we are feeling the effects of heavy rains and strong winds.  All missionaries have been prepared with adequate food supplies, water, and candles to last through the storm.  They have likewise been instructed to remain in their apartments until the storm has passed.  We would welcome your prayers in behalf of all the missionaries in the Philippines.  We will update you in the morning.
Kindest regards,
Sister Hansen, Mission Secretary
          Philippines San Pablo Mission

Monday, November 4, 2013

Watch out Jehovah Witnesses, here comes Elder Kikel!

All just start off with the bummer news first, just to get it out of the way.

This last week of work has not been so well, frankly terrible. We had a few holidays over here and also just the knowledge that we might be transferred discourage us and slow us down. We were barely able to teach lessons and didn't really do much, most of it is because of our faults, we got very lazy and the motivation was lost. I felt really bad about these things lately and I have told myself that I wouldn't let it happen again, because our area is not doing very well, and we barely have any investigators! I know Elder Mack and I can do better but, Tomorrow I will find out if I get transferred our not. Elder Nerza our district leader, and his companion Elder Gallen our getting pulled out, I am not sure why. So that means either Elder Mack becomes the new District Leader or one of us is going to be in this area for 6 months. We can't both be in the same area for 6 months because that would mean we both get transferred, and then the area gets closed for a while cause there are no missionaries! So I think I will be getting transferred tomorrow, but I am not for sure. 

I can't believe how fast time is flying its insane! I have all ready been in the Philippines for 3 months now! Wow! Where did that go!? I have been on a mission for 4 and half months! what!? There are times were I think wow I still have 20 months left that it so far, how am I going to do this? but, most of the time I think, wow! I only have 20 months, and I have almost done a quarter of my mission all ready! I don't have enough time! So it has its ups and downs. 

I do look forward to the point in my mission where I finally have everything down and I can just go Kikel Spaz in missionary work and just to the best that I can do, till the very end. Coming home to me is unimaginable, it would be so weird for me. I am living such strict rules every single day, I would feel everything that I am doing is against the rules! haha! That time will come, some day. Right now I just want to enjoy that fact that I am in the Philippines. I mean come one, I am all the way around the world, living in a completely different country, with a different culture, and a different language! Thats pretty sweet.

Elder Mack and I were walking down the street the other day, and this car pulls up to us, and in the window we see two men wearing Halloween masks. We just thought, " oh this will be interesting" The guys were obviously drunk, and we could smell it, but they pretty much told us if we needed a friend, we should just call him. hahah. Yes, he did give us his phone number. Later on the day we say the same to guys dancing in the street like bafoons. Elder Mack and I were laughing so hard! This other time we were on our way to an appointment, yesterday actually. While we were walking we so A LOT of Jehovah's Witnessses missionaries tracting houses. They were every where! When we got close to the house of the appointment that we had, we saw that there were a few Jehovah's witnesses talking to our Investigator. Elder Mack got scared and didn't want to walk up to them, I was just like. " Shoot man! Thats our investigator! I'm going in, back me up!" Haha the look on those missionaries faces were priceless,. when we walked up to Brother Oscar and he just let us in. Hahah. It was funny, but I give props to those missionaries out there, they are just doing what they believe is right, just like we are. There is nothing wrong with that.

Anyways I leave all you guys with a spiritual thought. First of all something that I realized this last week during personal study, is that the Lord even calls the weak to do his work. All he wants from us is to do our best. In the Preach My Gospel it say that a successful missionary is one who does the absolute best the they can, and feel the spirit working through them, even if they don't have immediate success in their labors. If we try our very best, the Lord will take care of the rest. This gave me comfort in the thought about my challenges learning Tagalog, after every lesson I get so frustrated cause I wasn't able to convey the message I wanted to convey. Now I know that it doesn't matter if I can't fully explain or teach the lesson to my full potential, but as long as I try my best, the Lord will take care of the rest for me! Knowing this it has helped me to realize, I can handle anything that comes my way in my mission, as long as I seek the Lord's help, and do my absolute best. I haven't been doing this lately but I plan on doing so now. This principle just doesn't apply to me or missionaries, this can apply to everyone. As you do your best to follow the commandments of the Lord, he will take care of the rest for you. but, the question is... Are you doing your best?

Another thing that I found particularly powerful was a scripture that Elder Mack came across for one of our investigators who is going through many trails in his life right now. This scripture is the very, and exact answer why we have trails in our life, and why God would let such bad things happen too such good people. Remember everyone that every trail and challenge we go through in our lives, is ESSENTIAL to our salvation. They give us experience, and they are for our good. I know through the Gospel of Jesus Christ we are able to overcome any challenge we face in life. Don't loose faith my friends, and never doubt God. 
D&C 122:7
 Me chillin with like the coolest cats I have ever seen! They are my ward mission leader's cats. 

Add caption

 Me and Elder Gallen wrestling, he knows a lot of martial arts stuff, and has been through a couple weeks of Basic Training in the US Military. He is so funny. 

We did a service project that we did with the YSA group. It was fun. We had to pull most of the grass and plant life out of one of the members yard's.
 Me just working like a boss. In my boots.
hahahaha this one is with me and Elder Nerza. He is about 5' 1" I believe. I am almost taller then him on my knees. The average Filipino is like 5' 6"-8"

Lastly but not least for this week. Is that Big Poppa Kikel got himself a new ride on his mission. nahh... It was one of our Investigators and I just had to get a picture of me on it hahahaha


Till next time.

-Elder Kikel

Monday, October 28, 2013

"Why so serioussss?!"

Hey everyone how are things going!?

Todays e-mail is not going to be as long but here it is anyways.

This last Tuesday I went on exchanges with another Elder that I live with. His name is Elder Gallen. He is my same batch meaning he got here the same time I got here. He hasn't been progressing as fast as others have and he is having a really hard time with everything, he has tried to go home a couple times now, but President won't let him haha!
So when we went on exchanges all four of us in our apartment didn't expect good things to happen from that day, but prove to be challenging. Last Tuesday was my most successful day on my mission, me and Elder Gallen did great together! He was really weird, but it was really cool to see, if we put our faith in the Lord he will help us to accomplish his work. I spoke a whole lot more Tagalog then I though I could so that was also interesting, but most of the lessons we taught were in English. We had some spiritual experiences and we both got a lot out of our exchanges together! 

I was talking with one of the Ward Missionaries that I know better then the others, and he told to me that all the Ward Missionaries are scared of me cause I am so serious all the time and I yell at them. haha, oops! So I have been more relaxed around them and starting to be more goofy, and they are all starting to like me now and they all ways joke around with me. The reason why I have been so serious with them, and not really being friendly is because I don't want to become good friends with them, and then get transferred, but I guess its just something I have to expect, cause they have started to work with Elder Mack and I since I have been more outgoing.

Elder Mack and I are starting to play a lot more basketball in the mornings now since we kind of know some of the kuyas (guys/boys) that play. They always get so excited when I show up, and want me to be on their team. Since I am super tall and white they think I am the best at basketball, boy do they get disappointed haha. Sometimes, I am starting to get a lot better now because I am starting to play so much. I can now dunk, I repeat, I can now dunk. It was sweet! I kept telling them I could't dunk, and I got up and tried and just slammed it in, I was shocked myself! So they keep throwing me ally-oops in games, but it never works haha. 

The work here is Sta. Rosa 2 has been the same we are struggling to find new investigators still, and we are now focusing our efforts on teaching members so we can gain their trust and receive referrals from them. I has proven to start working, they are enjoying us a lot. 

I have a feeling that I might get transferred soon (Nov 7) So I will find out if that happens next Monday or Tuesday. I don't feel like I am ever going to change areas or companions, so it will definitely be an experience if I do get transferred.

Thanks again everyone for you support you are all awesome! 

-Elder Kikel

Monday, October 21, 2013

Week something, I don't know


So, first of all, I am okay, and safe. The earthquake in the Philippines was over 250 miles away from my area, and didn't even feel a thing. Still, pray for those who were affected by this event, and I fear that some of our missionaries were affected also, I am not quite sure.

This last week we finally moved into our new apartment, which is like 10 times better then our last. It is really nice. I actually have a shower head now! Woo! No more bucket showers! It is a lot bigger and we have so much more room to do laundry and other stuff. Our rooms are a lot bigger which is nice and I sleep so much better! The actual moving process wasn't very fun, but we got it done and now we don't need to worry about it!

Nothing really interesting this week happened, so I'll talk more about missionary work, since I haven't really talked about it lately.

It basically still the same and just as hard. Elder Mack and I are having a hard time finding new investigators. The most frustrating thing that we have been dealing with lately is investigators agreeing to be baptized and then not following through with commitments, and really just not progressing at all, so the baptisms don't happen. The work is definitely proving challenging, and Elder Mack and I are trying to find new investigators to increase our teaching pool so that our schedules are busy. Sometimes we find ourselves with nothing to do, and then we get unmotivated and nothing gets done. We are trying to stay more motivated and determined to do the work from the time we wake up till the time we go to bed. I have been trying to study harder, and to really pray and seek guidance for help. I really want to do my best to improve this area and to bring more souls unto Christ and for others to feel and joy, and happiness that comes from living the Gospel! The language is still proving very difficult but, I will get there at some point.  (hopefully) ha. 

Not much this week, its been pretty rough. Hopefully next week ill have some sweet stuff for you guys to hear. This week I tried to think about what would be good to share to you guys back home, and feel what was needed to be heard. Two things came to my mind.

St. Matthew 25: 31-46.

This is Jesus teaching the parable of the Sheep and the Goats. When I read these verses the thing that comes to my mind is Charity. What is Charity? (Moroni 7: 44-47) Charity is the Pure love of Christ. When we have Charity we have Christ's Love, we start to see people as Christ would see them. When we can see them as Christ would see them we start to have a desire to serve them. When do service as Christ would to do our fellow brethren, we begin to feel his love and grace. Service is the best way to feel God's love. 

Help those who are in need, and turn them not away. 

Mosiah 4: 11-12

I read this scripture and thought it was a very powerful scripture. 
We need to remember that we are nothing without Christ, and his teachings in our lives. 

Thanks for all of the love and support you all give me. It definitely helps!


-Elder Kikel

Nothing like enjoying a ice cold Pop Cola on a hot day!

Also had some Dragon Fruit! I just got it because It looked delicious and it is from Fruit Ninja. It was really good!

Monday, October 14, 2013

The Enforcer!

Hello Everyone!

I loved everyone's e-mails that they have sent to me. I love hearing from you and how things are going!

First off I was finally able to watch Conference! Man oh man how much better conference is when you are actually seeking to gain from the talks that are being given! I can't even describe how awesome it was, why couldn't I realize this earlier!? All the talks were so good! I think my favorite talk was from Dieter F Uchtdorf when he talked about raising to our full potential! It was very inspiring and I just wish I could share my thoughts and impressions to you all on each and every single talk. I thought they were all very good, and I learned from them. I can't wait to for the next one! 

So I have to start trimming down my letters now, Sorry. We are only suppose to e-mail for about an hour and half, and I usually spend 2-3hrs on mine cause I am always so detailed haha! So in my efforts to striving to work to my full potential in missionary work and being obedient to the rules I have to start following the rules more strictly. I am also trying not to become the White Hand Book nazi, where every little rule someone breaks I freak out on them. but, I am not don't worry I know when to have fun and when to be serious. That is one thing I have noticed about myself since I have been on my mission. I have changed a lot. I am always so serious, so focused on what we need to do, that I'm  not very goofy that often. I'm serious cause its a serious work that we are doing here! but, don't worry the goofy is still inside me, I'll let it loose when I get home!

Ugh! this last week has probably has just been so stressful, and probably the more frustrating week I have had since I have been here! Dealing with Pasaway missionaries, trying to help other missionaries from going home! and trying to motivate others to do better! It's been stressful but I am doing my best. I want to complain about my companion but I won't cause there is no need for that, it just finally that time where I just know him to well and there is just those things that get under my skin. Just working on my patience that's all.

So the funniest things just happened as I am typing this e-mail. So one of the pasaway missionaries are playing video games on the computer while we are e-mailing and our Ward Mission Leader comes in and stands right behind him and watches him play for almost 5 mins and he didn't even know he was there! Oh when he saw him there it was so funny! Justice at last! muwahaha we try to tell him to get off and all the joyous stuff but he just ignores us. He goes home in a couple weeks so I am guessing he is just trunky! I better not be that way, someone remind me not to when the time comes!

Today we moved from apartment to a nicer one. It was a very stressful and frustrating experience, probably because I basically did it myself. but, it got done and its finished so thats all the matters. Hopefully no more ghosties! We haven't really had any problems since that first night. I don't really care anymore if strange sounds start happening in the night, I'm just a boss like that ya know.

Well It is time for me to go. I forgot to prepare a scriptural/spiritual message, just from all the things that have been going on. hmm... 

The Chapter of 2 Nephi 31
It is about Baptism and is one we use to help our Investigators see the importance of Baptism. but, as I have read this Chapter many times over, I have found many other doctrines and teachings that have helped me. I hope it will help you. Remember always your Baptismal Covenants, and strive to keep them each and every single day!

I love you all, thank you so much for the support! 

Only 20 months to go ;) 

-Elder Kikel

P.S. My return date is June 17, 2015

Monday, October 7, 2013

Paranormal Activity

This last week has been a pretty crazy week! Things just get crazier and crazier.

So just to begin I would like to say that I am starting to really love my mission. I enjoy every single day! I try to work harder, and harder, each and every single day. but, man... it can be pretty hard sometimes! The funnest part is that I am starting to get so use to the Filipino Culture. Things you Americans would find weird, and don't think is weird. The Philippines is a great place, crazy hectic, but a great place. Everything here is so cheap! I still eat the same thing pretty much everyday cause I am to lazy and don't really have any money to go out and buy stuff to make meals. I just eat hotdogs, rice, and eggs. Masarap! 

The everyday life is the Filipino life! I am use to the Humidity all ready! which is good I guess! Today it was soo hot! but, It didn't even feel humid outside, it just felt hot. So I guess when I get back to Utah I am going to dry up so bad! It's so hot we use umbrellas to give us shade! Oh man something I can not get use to is the women sometimes. I kid you not. We will walk by a bunch of college girls and Elder Mack and I will say hi to them, and they just squeal in excitement, and giggle. It is so funny! I still can't get use to everyone staring at me! I feel so weird and I want them to stop! No wonder celebrities hate it! I'm just so beautiful here! ;) Nah, Elder Mack and I get a kick out of it though. Everyday there are these girls that work at a vegetable stand and they ALWAYS say "Hey Kuya..." which pretty much means. Hey boys... haha and so we always wave at them and say hi. They try to give us free veggies but we just keep walking. haha. 

The work has really improved this last week. We finally have our Ward Missionaries start to work with us and we are seeing the results. We are starting to have more quality lessons. As of right now we have 5 Investigators with a baptismal goal date, and hopefully 4 more this coming week. So we are supper excited to see some improvement. We just hope that everything goes well and we have some baptisms. I have been enjoying doing the work. Elder Mack is making me do more stuff, so that I can prepare to become a Trainer. Daw (He said). So it hasn't been fun cause I still can't really speak Tagalog very well, but I have been studying really hard, and been trying to apply it more often. So the language is getting better, Elder Mack says I can speak more Tagalog then I think I can. I don't think so. But, I am trying really hard. 

One thing that has been hard is our new District Leader that took the place of Elder Bayubay. His name is Elder Nerza, and he is Filipino. He is what we call in the mission, a Pasaway Missionary (Disobedient missionary). He  isn't really bad but, He doesn't follow a lot of the mission rules, and he is going home soon. He has about 2 months left. So his companion Elder Gallen, who was in the MTC with me, has been having a really hard time since he has gotten in the field. He was just starting to get better when Elder Nerza came in, and kind of stopped progressing in his improvement. Elder Nerza tried to help him, but from what I can tell is that he thinks Elder Gallen is a lost cause, and stopped trying to help him. So since he is Pasaway, and Elder Gallen doesn't really know his purpose as a missionary, their work is not very good. Our Ward Mission Leader doesn't trust them, and they are always arguing. We have all ready had the Zone Leaders and President get involved. So I took upon me to help both of them. Unfortunately since then Elder Nerza doesn't like me cause he thinks I am a tattle tale I guess. pshh.. I don't care. If you are going to be here on a Mission your are going to do it right!
So I have just been talking to Elder Gallen, trying to help him realize his purpose as a missionary and what he needs to do to make his mission mean more to him. Also in how he can help himself and his companion. Then I am trying to think of how I can help Elder Nerza be a better example for Elder Gallen. I just think its pathetic that someone who has been in the Field for only 2 months has to tell the District Leader, and some one who has been in the field for 1 year and 10 months, The rules, and how to be obedient! So I just feel like I have had to take care of things myself around our apartment. Sometimes Elder Mack gets really lazy, and doesn't want to do anything. So I am cleaning the floors, I'm cleaning the kitchen, I'm cleaning the bathroom, I'm updating the Area Book, I'm leading planning, and weekly planning, I'm the one trying to help us stay focused. but, we are not perfect so we always have room to improve and become the best missionaries we can become! 

So something I have realized since I have been out here is that I am always so serious. I am goofy sometimes. But, not nearly as much as I was at home. I still have the goofiness inside me but, I just feel so serious all the time its weird! 
 The story I am about to tell you is not a lie. Is not exaggerated, and is real.

After I finished writing in my journal, and read in the Book of Mormon for a while I went to bed around 10:30 p.m. As I was laying in bed I as thinking about our Investigators and Less Active families, as a little time passed by Elder Mack come from outside the bedroom door, flicked on the lights, and said, " Elder Kikel, It's happening!" Elder Mack just looked like he was scared out of his mind! Breathing deeply, grabbing his chest, and just shaking! I thought It was a joke at first but then Elder Nerza came in my room looking just the same. 

I asked Elder Mack what happened and he told me that he was in the other room talking to Elder Nerza when they both "distinctively" heard chairs moving downstairs multiple times. Like there was someone scooting a chair out from under them. but, there was no one downstairs. They told me it happened 4-5 times. They were so scared. The weird thing was that I was wide awake in my bed, and I didn't hear anything. So Elder Gallen proceeded to go downstairs cause the other Elders were just freaking out. I was the first to go downstairs, and as soon as I stepped foot in the room I could feel the presence of something bad. I half expected something to happen when I was looking around. So I started to feel a little sketched out. I turned on all the lights and I set the chairs in a way that I would recognize that if the moved again in the morning, and I also put heavy stuff on all the chairs. After I have done this I felt uneasy so I went back upstairs, and we were all upstairs just talking about the whole situation. They all heard the chairs but me, so I thought it was weird and that nothing else was going to happen, and maybe they just heard something else that I didn't.

 As we were talking we just hear something fall downstairs, all the hairs on the back of my neck just stood up, chills just shoot up my back. As we were all looking at each other in shock, wondering if we all heard the same, we heard something like a cup fall on the ground! So now at this point we are all freaking out, its past midnight and things are happening and we are all witnessing it! We decided that we needed to kneel in prayer. They had me give the prayer. In that prayer asked for safety and comfort, that the apartment that we are living in would be blessed and a place for safety, and for the holy ghost to dwell. I prayed for that if there was any unclean spirits that were in our presence to be cast out, and to never return. This was the part that made this whole situation so surreal to me. When I said those things in the prayer. I heard a soft but very distinctive growl behind me. I continued to finish the prayer. When I finished I slowly raised my and asked. "Did you guys hear what I heard" and they all said that they heard a growl that came from behind me.

Brothers and Sisters. Just like how God has power on this earth, so does Satan. So be watchful of your actions, be careful to not entice such spirits to dwell within you and within your home. This experience has strengthen my Faith and my testimony that we have a power from God. We have priesthood authority to do mighty things on this earth, that some would say would be a coincidence, but the power and authority to do his work, according to our faith. So be Faithful and work in his name! 
So I decided I would share a scripture or anything else spiritual with you every time I write home. So here is this weeks special.

D&C 27:15-18.

These scriptures talk about the armor of god and what each piece of the armor means. I invite everyone to put on the armor of God each and every single day that Satan's temptations will not be able to take hold of you.

Helamen 5:12

This is one of my favorite scriptures. It is very self explanatory. Build your foundation in Christ, and you shall not fall. 

Thanks everyone for the love and support! 

-Elder Kikel