Hello Family and friends,
Two weeks left to go!! It has been a great week here at the MTC. Days filled with mucho estudiando, comiendo, ensenando y aprendiendo. Things have been really great and very spiritual. Into the details:
With the departure of our other teacher, Hermano Campbell, also ment we lost an investigator. But we did get a new one on Tuesday; his name is Hal who is a baptist and his best friend is a mormon. We have only taught him once where we got to know him and why he is interested in the LDS Chuch. We also introduced him to the Book of Mormon and taught him how to pray. It went all right, it just went a long time and I could tell that Hal was getting bored but everytime I tried to end it my companion kept going on. It was a little frustrating but we were able to figure out how to keep our lessons shorter. Then yesterday we taught our other progressing investigator Geraldo. He is coming along very well; he had a drinking problem and expressed his desire to quit for his family. So we taught him the Word of Wisdom last week and this week when we met with him he hadn't drank in a week, plus he was able to find a job at a restaurant. I was so happy for him and could tell that the Lord was blessing his life for the changes he was making. I was so happy for Geraldo I almost forgot to start the lesson. In that same lesson we taught him about the Plan of Salvation which went really well. My companion was struggling a little bit with his spanish so I kinda picked up the slack and gave a majority of the lesson. But I could definitely tell that the Spirit was helping me receive instruction on what to say, what questions to ask, and helped me understand Geraldo. I could tell the Spirit was touching Geraldo's heart as well, especially when we talked about the Atonement. It was a great lesson and I was so grateful for the companionship of the Holy Ghost in that lesson.
So yesterday we received more missionaries (About 800 new missionaries) and our district had the opportunity to host. It actually was really fun introducing the missionaries to the MTC and getting them settled into the environment. I hosted 4 new missionaries, 1 english, 2 spanish, and 1 portugese. The one thing that really touched me was right at the beginning saying goodbye to their families. It really hit home that serving a mission is a sacrifice for both the missionary and the family. But the blessings are even better and are so great. I know that serving a mission is hard, I remember my first few days and thinking how hard it is going to be. But I know that the Lord is with us constantly. He is comforting us, supporting us, and strengthening us daily when we turn to Him for help. I liked the quote by Elder Andersen in the Worldwide Broadcast "If we are doing the work of the Lord as best we can, the Lord will not fail us or let us fail." Therefore we need to be constantly making sure we are living up to the covenants we have made with Him, and helping His work progress. (Attached is a picture of me after hosting)
So alot of you guys have been asking if the changes to the mission usage of technology has effected our work here at the MTC. To be honest: No. My branch president works in the Church offices in the technology department and has been spearheading this work for a while. He said that right now they are slowly going to be issuing the usage of Ipads, tablets, and smartphones into missionary work and it probably wont be at full force till next year. But they will be very helpful in teaching. For example we will be able to access Mormon.org and all the Mormon Messages from the the devices which I think will be great tools in teaching and bearing testimony. Also it will help with finding and contacting investigators and those interested in the Gospel. So they are slowly working in the use of these devices and we won't be using them much here in the MTC and I don't know how much I will be using it in the mission field as well. My branch president said that there will be one area that will mostly use technology to find and teach investigators. But the rest of the areas will mostly be regular street contacting and tracting.
Anyway just some small details. Spanish is coming along really well and I am able to recall things alot better. We are starting to get into some pretty difficult grammer in present subjunctives. The concept is all right it is just knowing when to use it and use it. So here is to understanding it within the next two weeks. My companion and I were called last sunday to be the Sacrament Coordinators. Basically just means we are in charge of preparing and cleaning up the sacrament every sunday. The scary thing is we are the oldest district in our branch for the next two weeks, so guess it times to start acting our age ;) It is just a wierd feeling to be the oldest district doesn't feel like I have been here for that long. I will admit though I am starting to get anxious to get out into the mission field and start working. Sitting in a classroom for over 8 hours is starting to get boring. But I am going to have to push through it cause this is when alot of the important lessons will be taught. The lessons have been great with our teachers this past week. Just need to really focus and learn as much as I can.
Well that sums up everthing for this week. Tonight we get to watch the fireworks from Stadium of Fire which is a plus. But the temple is closed for cleaning so I won't be able to attend the temple the rest of my time here at the MTC which is a bummer. But things are great just need to buckle down and learn as much as I can in these next few weeks. The Church is true. It is true because it is Christ's Church and it is built on His Gospel found in 3 Nephi. We learned what Gospel means, it means good news or good tidings. And this Gospel is a good news to everyone and will bless everyone. I know it is true.
PS Thanks for the news about me making All Conference Academic Freshman team. I was so excited when I hear that I almost scared my district because of my excitement
Also.... Here is a picture of our district with Hermano Campbell right before he left. I think he was my favorite teacher and was super sad when we said he was going to the MTC in Mexico. But I am glad that he will continue to help other missionaries prepare for their missions.
And here's a picture of Tyler and his companions.... you can tell they're working soooo hard =)