Letter 2: "Schwang!"

Missionary Training Center (MTC)
Provo, Utah
December 14th 2010

Okay! so I am now starting to understand why people LOVE the MTC.

I get it.

The first week really does stink but holy cow, it's amazing! even though I know I will love the field 10x more, this is an amazing experience.

(The MTC keeps everything bad outside)

"My District"
I love my district, I don't know how much I told you about them last week, but they really are great!

All of the Elders of my district are so adorable and even though we've only been together for two weeks, it really does feel like we are family.

They are so strong and they are all going to be great missionaries... All, in very different ways.

"My teachers"
Then, there are our teachers, who are AWESOME! Hermanos Rapp and Zirckle are pretty legit.

Hermano Zirckle is married and has a kid on the way, he is finding out the gender this week!

Then Hermano Rapp... oh Hermano Rapp. His key phrases are 'Schwang!' and 'weak sauce!' everything in 'weak sauce!'...

We, the sisters, are taking those phrases with us to Guatamala, El Salvador, and Belize...it's going to be an Epic-demic :)

Speaking of, WE GOT OUR TRAVEL PLANS!!!!!!!!!!! we leave next Tuesday (exactly a week!) me and the other Hermanas are heading out to Guatamala.

We weren't sure if we were going to be able to go because a lot of places in Central America and Spain are having difficulties with visas...

Two of the Elders in our district (Elders Thornly and Peterson) were supposed to leave the same day as us, but their visas are delayed so they are staying here.

It really is exciting news that we are going, but it is bittersweet...we really will miss our Elders (our district Elders) and we aren't going to be able to see them until after the mish... sad...

Another thing, if you are going to send a letter, you'd better send it by Friday, otherwise I probably wont get it.

This past week has been so amazing.

Sunday was and is my favorite day of the week. For Relief Society, Sister Christofferson, as in... the apostles wife!, came and talked to us.

We also got to see Music and the Spoken Word, Christmas Style :) and for the Sunday fireside we heard the BYU mens choir, which I thought was legit!

...oh! COOL STORY!

So Hermana Wooten and I went together to sing in the choir for Devotional (which is tonight), but the practice was on Sunday.

After the practice, she was talking to an Elder about where they were going, and when she told him she was going to El Salvador he said "Oh my companion is your mission presidents son!"

So, we went to find him and when we did, we come to find MY mission Presidents son! he's here at the MTC on his way to Provo!

I thought it was pretty cool....! I hope to find him sometime today to get my picture taken with him cause neither of us had one on us...

He told me that, because I know him, my mission president will love me more :)

I am loving how much I'm learning here and even though I miss you all it is so worth it!

It kind of hurts...no, it really hurts to change this much this fast, but I can't believe how quickly everything is coming. So many changes!

Spanish is definitely the biggest challenge.

Every week we teach a mock lesson (it's kind of like a weekly test) and last Saturday was the first one.

Hermana Griffin and I did really well! Teaching is so great! my favorite part is when we get to promise them all of the blessings of following the gospel, it's so powerful and the promises are legit, they are backed up and I have no fear in giving them..

I really do love The Work, even though I haven't technically done it yet :) I'm so excited to get out of here...only 7 more weeks left!

Thank you so much for all of you who have sent letters, they are saving me and keeping me so motivated and reminding me why I'm here, I love it!

The package from the Relief Society was AMAZING! It was beautiful! Thank You!

I'll sent real letters this week cause my time is running out! Sorry! You'll get a personal, not in a few days! (if you have written me, ofcourse :)

Casey is Already in Guatemala. She called her family from the Dallas airport and talked for a while. It was great to hear from her and she is doing awesome! She sent a 'snail mail' letter, and we will get that to y'all as soon as we can!

Letter 1: "MTC"

Missionary Training Center (MTC)
Provo, Utah
December 7th 2010

"And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness, I gice unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; forif they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong."
Ether 12:27

Ha ha ha. Yeah...I'm feeling it this week.

I am positive that anyone who said to LOVED the MTC, either didn't have to learn another language, or only loves it in hindsight because of all of the things they learned and how much they grew.

Okay, that sounded a little harsh... a little :)

This week has been Crazy! I don't think I could tell you all the things that have happened to me even if I tried... OK, I'll try:

"The MTC"
Basically, I've been so busy that I haven't really had time to think.

(Missionary Training Center or MTC in Provo)

I truly believe that they [The MTC people] try to cram as much information into our brains as possible and pray to heaven that some of it would stick.

It might not be that way, but that's how it feels. Most of the day we are in class learning...
  1. a mixture of basic doctrines of Christ,
  2. how to teach those doctrines, and
  3. how to teach those doctrines in Spanish....It's a challenge for sure.
"My Companion"
My Companion is Hermana Griffin, we are both going to El Salvador and she is pretty awesome.

We are a lot a like in many ways, we watch the same T.V. shows and are pretty similar in personalities, but there a lot of differences too.

She has no problem learning Spanish, she's taken seven years in school and feels pretty comfortable learning more in the language...

Spanish stresses me out to no end. it feels like this huge Gulf that i am drowning in. I feel like I think about it all day and try to memorize lines and rules, but it doesn't stick. part of me knows that I will get it and that I have come so far in the last four days.

Right now I'm pretty comfortable praying in Spanish and can door contact (very VERY basic door contacting) as well as recite a couple scriptures...oh, and bear my testimony more fluently and more from the heart than my previously memorized testimony.

So in reality it is coming...

"The feeling"
If I were taking a class at school it would take weeks and even months to learn what I have learned in five days.

But not a day goes by that I don't have mini-breakdowns because I feel like I will never learn it...though in my heart I know that's silly.

I am a set apart servant of God...He's the one who called me, so obviously he knows I can do it with his help.

Hermana Griffin is also a big help cause she is there to guide me through those moments of doubt...

On the other hand, my strength lies in teaching the Gospel...I love it! I can't get enough of it. I want to practice teaching every day, all day!

It's so amazing when you bear your testimony and you feel the spirit and the words you are saying really do touch those that are listening.

I know it's practice here, but the feeling that comes every time I recite Joseph Smiths vision, and every time I testify that God is our Father and that he really does love us....it's AMAZING!!!

Herman Griffin is having a hard time with that. She really does have a testimony but when we teach a lesson she focuses on the facts. I love her! She has such a great spirit and I know that when she really is able to communicate what she feels in words she will be on fire!

It's interesting the feeling of having a companion... Someone you are with, all day, every day... it's interesting. :)

Anyway I'm running out of time on the computer really fast so I'm going to get going.

This really is going to be an amazing experience, I know it!

The following picture is of my last day in Rexburg. We went to the Rexburg Temple.

(Trish, me and Hernan in Rexburg Idaho, a day before I entered the MTC)