Most if not all of you are aware that we recently had a typhoon visit our beautiful Philippines San Pablo Mission. It arrived Tuesday evening and lasted through the night into the early morning hours of Wednesday. We had warned all of our missionaries Tuesday morning of the pending typhoon and that its path would cut across our mission, so they were well prepared and had taken cover well in advance of the storm.
Following the storm, our first concern was to assure that all of our missionaries were safe and in good condition. The storm knocked out our power, cell phones, internet, and water in virtually all areas of our mission which limited our ability to establish contact immediately. Many of the roads were closed or clogged with downed trees, power lines, etc. Our cell phone service was the first of our services to be restored on Wednesday and we started reaching out to our missionaries. Thursday morning we went forward with our transfer day as planned and about half of our missionaries were at the Mission Home that day to pick up their new companions allowing us to check on them. We have been in contact with all of our missionaries and I assure you they are safe and healthy. I am amazed at the resiliency of these great missionaries.
Much of our mission still does not have power as I am writing this message my Friday night. Power was restored to the area around the Mission Home about noon today. Tomorrow we will need to drive outside of our mission to the closest location with internet service in order to send this email. Local crews are working around the clock to restore power to the balance of the areas as quickly as possible. Each of our missionaries are well prepared with sufficient supplies and we will continue to monitor the situation from day to day and take any necessary steps to assure their wellbeing.
Depending on when power and internet services are restored, you may or may not receive an email from your missionary this Monday. If they are unable to send an email Monday, we will have them send one as soon as possible following the restoring of services.
Sister Mangum and I will begin a two week tour of the mission next Tuesday to conduct interviews with each of the missionaries as part of our normally scheduled interview cycle. We look forward to seeing each of the missionaries and being able to check on them personally.
Thanks for sending us such well prepared and consecrated missionaries. You can be very proud of them for their dedication and devotion to this sacred work of the salvation of our Heavenly Father’s Children.
President Bart A. Mangum
Sister Renae J. Mangum