Saturday, July 30, 2016

2016-07-31 President's Message

Dear Sisters and Elders,

One of the most interesting parts of the Pearl of Great Price is Abraham 3-5. In Abraham 3:22-28 we read of the Council in Heaven. Heavenly Father presents His plan to create an earth as a place for his spirit children to come, grow and be tested. This is where we learn that Christ volunteered to fulfill the plan of the Father. Then in Abraham 4 through Abraham 5:3 we read of the Spiritual Creation of the earth. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ planned the creation the creation of the earth in great detail. After this planning, they worked together to form the earth and to create man.

There is a great principle for us to learn here. The principle is that Spiritual Creation is an important part of the gospel. Just as the Father and the Son spiritually created the earth, we need to spiritually create the important things in our lives.

Step One: Pray

It is a powerful practice to kneel down and pray about what the Lord wants you to do in your service to Him. Pray alone and pray with your companion for the gift of faith and the gift of spiritual vision.

Step Two: Visualize

As an example, you might set a goal that during the coming 4 weeks you will baptize a family, bring one recent convert into full activity and help another person prepare for his temple ordinances. When you plan for the family being baptized, picture them all dressed in white. Picture their happiness when they are coming up from the water after being baptized. Picture them bearing their testimonies at that special time.

For the recent convert becoming fully active, picture them standing to be sustained in their new calling.  When you plan for temple preparation, picture their happiness as they prepare family names for the temple and the satisfaction your convert will have as they hold their new temple recommend in their hands.

Step Three: Plan With Faith

To spiritually create means to plan with faith. Write down your plans to accomplish what you have seen in your mind. Your plans should be specific and realistic. They should be plans that you are 100% dedicated to achieving.

Step Four: Physically Create (Act on Your Plan)

Next, we need to follow the example of Heavenly Father and DO THE WORK to make what we have spiritually created become real. (See Abraham 5:4-21) This is a crucial step. Visions and plans are great, but they are useless by themselves. Every day, pray with faith, be exactly obedient and work your hardest to make your plans happen.

If you will follow the pattern of Spiritually Creating and then ACTING on what you want to accomplish in the work of the Lord, you will find great power in the work. Miracles will come. Many people will come to Christ.

I have applied these principles in my life. They have blessed me and have brought many blessings to those I love. I promise that the same will happen to you.

May the Lord bless you my dear fellow servants.

Mahal ko po kayo,

President Creg Ostler

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

2016-07-25 President's Message

Dear Elders and Sisters,

Thank you for being such faithful servants of the Lord. Thank you for your faith in God. Thank you for leaving behind your school, family, job and friends to serve the Lord. Thank you for even leaving behind your Thoughts of school, family, job and friends so that you can focus your minds, hearts and souls on serving others. When you forget yourself and give EVERYTHING (including your thoughts) to serve others, you receive two blessings: 1) Your love, and your ability to love, grow dramatically; 2) Your relationship with God becomes much closer and real--this is because you and Heavenly Father are working together for the same purpose--to bring His children back to Him.

This week I read again the classic talk by Elder Robert D. Hales given in April 1990 when he was serving as Presiding Bishop of the Church. It is entitled "Return With Honor"...

"As a young man, I had an opportunity to serve in the U.S. Air Force as a jet-fighter pilot. Each unit in our squadron had a motto that would inspire its efforts. Our unit motto--displayed on the side of our aircraft--was "Return With Honor." This motto was a constant reminder to us of our determination to return to our home base with honor only after having expended all of our efforts to successfully complete every aspect of our mission.

This same motto, "Return with Honor," can be applied to each of us in our eternal progression...

Elder Bruce R. McConkie, a man of great faith, said, "Faith is a gift of God bestowed as a reward for personal righteousness. The greater the measure of obedience to God's laws the greater will be the endowment of faith." In other words, obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel is essential to obtain faith in the Lord Jesus Christ...

The Lord says: "Keep my commandments continually...And except thou do this, where I am you cannot come." (DC 25:15) The Lord tells us plainly: "If ye love me, keep my commandments." (John 14:15)

I have stressed the importance of obedience. However, as important as obedience is, sometimes people are deceived and choose to be selectively obedient...

A missionary may recognize that he must be obedient, yet selectively do only part of what he is commanded to do. The Lord tells us in 2 Nephi the following:

"Yea, and there shall be many which shall say: Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die; and it shall be well with us. And there shall also be many which shall say: Eat, drink, and be merry; nevertheless, fear God--he will justify in committing a little sin; yea, lie a little, take the advantage of one because of his words, dig a pit for thy neighbor; there is no harm in this; and do all these things, for tomorrow we die; and if it so be that we are guilty, God will beat us with a few stripes, and at last we shall be saved in the kingdom of God." 2 Nephi 28:7-8


Many young men [and women] enter the mission field having made great sacrifices. They may have had to postpone athletic, artistic, scholarship and career plans. There may be great financial sacrifice on the part of the family. They may have even left a young lady [or young man] whom they loved dearly...but, no matter how much an individual or family may sacrifice for a mission or anything else, unless missionaries choose obedience, consecrating all of their time, talents, and resources in the service of the Lord while they are in the mission field, they cannot fully receive all the great blessings the Lord has in store for them."

(End of quote from Elder Hales)

Elders and Sisters, please examine your life. Pray to Heavenly Father to know if you are falling into the trap that Nephi and Elder Hales describe: Have you have sacrificed so much to come and serve Lord but you are still rationalizing your behavior? Are you being selective (choosing) which commandments and rules you will obey and those you will not?

If you want to feel complete peace; if you want to feel the power of God in your life; if you want to have power in your teaching...then make the decision that you are 100% in. Don't fall for the deception that it is OK to sin a little, break the rules a little, be almost 100% honest, work almost your hardest or give almost your best.

What is the difference between giving 95% and giving 100%? The difference is 500%!

President Marion G. Romney explained this principle the best:

"A person could not give a crust (a single piece of bread) to the Lord without receiving a loaf in return."

Elders and Sisters, I love you very much. When I decided as a young man to give everything to the Lord my life changed. I was not then, and am not now, anywhere close to perfect. But I feel the love of the Lord. I feel the guidance and power of His spirit in my life. I know that, if I will continue to be obedient, humble and diligent, I will be able to bring many people back to Heavenly Father, including my family and myself. I will return with honor. Please make the decision today to be 100% obedient to God and to Return with Honor.

Mahal ko po kayo,

President Creg Ostler

Sunday, July 17, 2016

2016-07-18 President's Message

Dear Elders and Sisters,

Thank you so much for your faith and service. You are truly and inspiration to me.

One of the greatest blessings of serving a mission is the time you are given to study the Gospel of Jesus Christ. You have one hour per day for personal study, plus additional time to study as a companionship. You also have some extra time during meal times or in the evening for optional study.

Make a Plan

I invite you to make a plan for what you will accomplish during your mission for your personal study. This is your chance to really learn the gospel. What you learn on your mission will be a blessing to you, your family and the people you serve for your entire life.  For example, plan might include:

--Read the Book of Mormon two times.

--Read "Our Heritage", "True to the Faith" and "Our Search For Happiness" one time.

--Read the Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price and New Testament one time.

(You should not read "Jesus the Christ" until you have read all of the 4 Standard works and the rest of the missionary library.)

--Study the 13 chapters of Preach My Gospel. Do every  Personal Study Activity, look up every scripture and write it's meaning, and do every "Ideas for Study and Application."

--Read all of the General Conference talks after each conference.

--Keep a regular study journal.

These goals are only Ideas. They are not mission goals. They sound very high, but you will be surprised at how much you can accomplish if you plan out your study and stick with your plan. For example, the English Book of Mormon contains 531 pages. Reading only 3 pages per day, you can read the book twice in a year. The New Testament, Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price have 762 pages to read. You can finish them in one year by reading just 2 pages per day. If you add the 1,184  pages of the Old Testament, you would need to read 3.5 pages per day.

These do not need to be your goals. Set goals that are realistic and helpful to you. For example, 70% of our mission is learning English. You may need to adjust your goals to fit your English ability.


1. Read through Preach My Gospel, chapter 2 ("Effective Study").

2. Write a Personal Study Plan for the rest of your mission.

3. Share your plan with your companion.

**4. Send me your plan in next week's email.**

I am excited for the spiritual progress you will make in your life, and for the great job you will do as you teach others. This is the one time in your life when you are guaranteed the time to study the gospel in such depth. Please make wise use of it.

My life has been greatly blessed by consistent gospel study. I have read the scriptures many times and have studied the other resources. My testimony has grown deeper . I have been blessed with guidance and insight in times of need. My life has changed as I have tried to apply what I learn. My ability to teach the gospel has been expanded. I promise that you will receive the same blessings. Building your knowledge of the gospel now will serve as a foundation for the rest of your life.

Mahal ko po kayo,

President Creg Ostler

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

2016-7-13 It's a Brand New Batch! Thank you families!!!

 This morning, bright and early, our wonderful office elders and assistants brought all the missionaries from the MTC!  14 of them!  What a joy to meet a whole new batch!  The Wolcotts, Porteouses and office elders had another busy day.  They are so wonderful in how faithfully they do their jobs and support us and all the missionaries!  We will be losing Elder Ballif and gaining Elder Heckel as our main office secretary.  Elder Ballif has been magnificent in his service, his attitude and his support.  Elder Monson is also training Elder Webster to replace himself.  He has made such a great contribution in the office.  Parents, please don't ever feel bad if your children serve in the office.  It is just as important as their service out of the office.  They are providing an invaluable service to the President, myself,  and the whole mission.  They are also developing skills that will bless them throughout their lives.  We are so grateful for all of your children, however they help build God's kingdom!

 We especially appreciate the senior missionaries who serve quietly in the background most of the time, making a huge difference!

 The reason you never see President on the morning of new missionary orientation is because he is personally interviewing each of the new missionaries and then praying about where to assign them.  After we have lunch, he joins the group along with all the trainers and then he reveals their new companions and areas.

        Elder Webster is doing a great job in the office as financial clerk!  He did a great presentation this morning about financial matters.  We appreciate his cheerful spirit and sense of humor. I appreciate that he laughed at my joke today!

   Elder Heckel is stepping right up into place.  He has a lot of duties to learn.  He'll be great!

We miss our Assistant, Elder Whittle. But Elders Beagley & Elder Garcia were trained well and did a smooth job running the orientation!

        Sister Turner has been swept right up into the nursing responsbilities!  She's busy!!!

Elder Arninio is the new Supply Secretary that has been serving for a transfer or so.  He's such a cheerful and willing spirit.  He always has a kind word for everyone.

Several of the sisters will be serving on Palawan, so they will meet their new companions tomorow.

         Guess who gets to serve in Coron????  She's very excited.  Sister Thatcher will travel with her and serve in Coron as well.

 Elder Cortez's brother, Elder Cortez was just assigned to our mission!!!  He was serving in Arizona but had to come home for medical reasons.  He and his family came by to meet us a while back and we joked that we wished he could serve in our mission, never dreaming it would happen!  He's such an enthusiastic and already trained elder.  It will be a joy to have him. The Lord works in ways that seem mysterious to us, but He knows what He is doing. :)

                           Elder Dassun on the right will be his new companion.

               We got 10 TEN! sisters this batch!  We are so excited to finally get some more!

     Both Sister Holzworth and Sister Watson will be training!!!  They are fantastic!
     Elder Ashton has become a seasoned, mature and steady missionary.  And he likes to eat!

 Elder Garcia is full of energy as he serves wherever called as an assistant.  Always a smile!

Elder Zacharias is a faithful, good missionary.  We will miss him as he gets medical attention at home.

                                        Elder Lumanta is a happy, willing helper at all times!