So it is now the end of my second week in the MTC, pretty crazy. The days feel long but the weeks fly by. As last week it was a very busy week. I have a feeling that all my weeks as a missionary will be very busy haha. So now we have two teachers that teach us 4 or 5 times a week. We still have Hermano Sallisbury and now we have Hermano Mendoza who was the teacher that was pretending to be 'Marco', or first investigator. Mendoza is a really nice guy, he served in San Diego and is now married. He also is really into rock climbing, so it is nice to talk with him about climbing. We are done teaching our first "investigator" but now we have three new ones. We have one played by each teacher and a gold tag investigator that you can pick up by talking to them and setting up an appointment with around the campus. The gold tag will be interesting because they may or may not be members of the church. Anyways, it is really good practice to actually teach in Spanish even though it is really difficult and challenging when you can't really say all the things that you want to.
We had the best devotional this week as well. Janice Kapp Perry and her husband came to talk to us. If you don't know Sister Perry has composed tons of the primary songs like "Armies of Helaman/Sisters of Zion." It was really cool because we sang a bunch of her songs and it took me back to those primary days. They were also very fun speakers and very animated. Just real you know. She also told a very funny story of how she met her husband. So she and her husband took a clarinet class at BYU and had sort of eyed each other all semester. At the end of the class they had to perform and as Sister Perry was getting ready and sucking on her reed Douglas Perry nudged her and said: "Those lips look like they were made for something better than sucking on a clarinet." As soon as she said that Brother Perry, who is an old 80 something guy, got up pumped his fists, walked over to his wife at the pulpit and kissed her in front of everyone! It was hilarious! They both gave very good talks, and you could really feel the spirit there, especially when we sang a round of Armies of Helaman at the end.
Yesterday for the Devotional we had D Todd Christopherson speak to us and all the Mission Presidents since it is the week where all the Mission Presidents come to be trained at the MTC. At that meeting there were 6 apostles total: Bednar, Oaks, Nelson, Ballard, Christopherson, and Anderson. It was really cool just to see them there, and that they would be at that meeting even though they weren't all talking. Christopherson gave a amazing talk on the worth of souls and the Charity of Christ. He gave a quote that really resonated with me by CS Lewis: "There are no ordinary people, you have never talked to a mere mortal." That is such a cool thought, that everyone has an eternal soul and has the potential to be a god. It really motivates us to make sure to talk to everyone we can because everyone has such potential. It's like Bishop Campbell always said: No one came to this world to be mediocre. He also said some really rousing things about how it is necessary for us to teach with and have the charity of Christ. When we have that pure love for people they will see that, and listen to the things we have to say. Those things in particular hit me because that was something that I had been thinking about and praying for. Sweet devotional all in all.
So this week has also been pretty trying, especially with one of our new investigators, Miguel. Miguel is played by Hermano Sallisibury and is a tough investigator that kept asking us why he needed the Book of Mormon if he already has the bible. We were kind of stumped because we didn't know how to say those things in Spanish, and Sallisbury was speaking really fast to us so he was hard to understand. One of my companions got really frustrated halfway through and kind of put his scriptures down in a huff and was quiet. It was a really tough and humbling experience that I think is necessary for us to go through. The Lord breaks us down so that he can build us back up stronger, just like when we work out with our body like I did in wrestling. Anyway, after the lesson the Elder was upset and really frustrated, he just kind of sat down in the hall. Right then I bowed my head and said a prayer, that we as a companionship could be comforted, and learn the things that we need to learn from this experience. Right as soon as I finished my prayer the elders who study in the other room started to listen to a talk by Elder Bednar. It was loud enough for us to hear and Bednar said: Do your best, keep your covenants and mission rules, work hard and stop worrying about it. It was a super awesome experience that really helped me out. It was one of the most concrete answers that I have received from a prayer.
|Elder Wilkey, Elder Dixon and Elder Hartvigsen (Me!)|
We also had a new district come into our zone this week with 6 new Elders and 2 Hermanas. They are good missionaries and they work hard. We are also getting another district today so we will have four districts in our zone which is a lot. The branch president also said that more districts are coming, so we might get another one next week or the week after. Its kind of crazy, when we first got here we thought that the other district was so wise and knew so much, but after a few days you figure out everyone in the MTC is more or less on the same level with each other. There are other elders that you look up to, but I realized that everyone here is going to be a greenie in a few short weeks. Kind of interesting to realize the perspective you have and how you view other people.
Yeah, all in all it has been a good week at the MTC. It's great here and I love it, but I'm really excited to actually get out in the field and work with the people. The Spanish will be tough, but I'll learn and the Lord will provide the way. That is one thing that keeps on coming up, is that we can't do this work without the help of the Holy Ghost, and the Lord. Anyway, love you guys!