"Hey everyone! I don't have much time to email, but I just wanted today that everything is awesome! I love it here in the MTC. Everyone I have met is so nice.
I don't even know where to start!! So, so much has happened in the past 8 days.
Obviously, today is my P-Day. We have time around 8am to print off emails and reply to short ones and then time around 10am to email longer emails while we are doing our laundry. Speaking of laundry, I feel like I am already getting tired of wearing skirts every day...but at the same time I really like wearing skirts all the time. I don't exactly know how to describe the feeling. Day 1 was terrifying. Brother Hale, my teacher doesn't speak in English unless we really have no idea what he is saying. We spend around 10 hours a day in our classroom, but about half the time our teacher isn't there and it's just used for unsupervised Personal, Companion and Language study. That time is also used to teach our investigator. I have only been here a week and my companion (Cectpa Shippen) and I have already taught her five half hour lessons. She only speaks Russian so we have to teach in Russian...a lot of the time this consists of us reading off of the piece of paper, but day by day we are remembering more words and relying more on the Spirit to help us remember words and phrases without having to read them out of the books. There are SOOO many books. I'll attach a picture of the books that they gave us. I have everything in English and Russian along with a ton of Russian grammar books. That's not even including the books that I brought with me!!
Cectpa Shippen is an artist and so she drew a picture of each missionary in my district on the white board. We have little speech bubbles that we each write a new Russian word in every day and we try to learn each other's words throughout the day. It's a fun and pretty awesome way to remember words.
All of the missionaries that are going to Moscow will leave for the Spain MTC in about a week and a half (including my companion). There will only be about 5 missionaries left in my zone. Which is crazy because that means that our sacrament meeting will be so empty untl we get new Russian or Baltic missionaries. In sacrament meeting we have to sing the Hymns in Russian which is SO hard. But, we are getting better at it every time we do it! The gift of tongues is real guys!
I was sick for the whole first week that I was here. This place is a breeding grounds for colds. Almost everyone I talk to has had a time when they were sick here. I would sneeze literally hundreds of times per day and have to blow my nose all of the time. I am already out of the Kleenexes that I brought, but luckily, I am getting better and finally feel pretty much back to normal today. The days are so long (we wake up at 6 and then go to bed at 10:30 everyday). P-Day has been so nice because we haven't spent any time in the classroom yet today.
I accidentally wore my watch in the shower...typical...so I might need someone to send me a new one because now it is all foggy and super hard to read ALTHOUGH it does still work. I love getting the DearElders that Emma and Paden have been sending me. I'm not homesick, but it is good to hear from people. I also spend a few minutes every day looking through my little photo album. I just have like 10 minutes a day where I allow myself to be sentimental and then it's back to work!
Every Saturday we do service. I really thought that cleaning the showers was kinda fun at first until I realized that I had to do it 14 times haha. It's nice to know that all the missionaries here are willing to clean up after themselves, though, and cleaning together keeps us close. My ddsitrict always finds a way to make everything fun (we probably have too much fun than we shoud when we should be studying).
One of the coolest things is that when we sing "Called to Serve" everyone sings so loudly and it just seems so real because we are actually doing what the song says! Also, when we sing "To Bring the World His Truth," we change the words from "and we will be the Lord's missionaries" to
"and we are now the Lord's missionaries." It feels so good to sing that.
On Sunday when we did our temple walk, all of the different Russia missions took pictures together. It was sad because I didn't get to get in any of the pictures, but I feel cool being so unique. Being the only person in the whole MTC that is going to Seattle Russian speaking. Everytime I tell someone that their mouth just falls open!
I am so grateful to be one of the millions of members of this church. I can't believe that I ever cnsidered not sserving a mission and passing up the opportunity to be in the presence of the spirit at all times. I can't believe that I almost missed an opportunity to hear from an apostle of God on a random Tuesday night when I wuld probably otherwise be scrolling through Insta. There is just something so very special about the MTC and the people here. Elder Bednar spoke on the character of Jesus Christ's ministry. The incomprehensible love that Jesus pour upno their children and the stunning fact that even as every individual who has ever lived or will yet live is known in perfect detail by God who has created this vast and beautiful universe. It amazes me that I can be significant enough to warrant any of his time. I cannot imagine going through my life without this spiritual intervention. I am only a week into 18 month, but I have already learned so much! I hope to someday become worthy of this badge that I wear. I am going to try and remember to always turn outwards in the business of loving and serving my brothers and sister just as Christ did. The spirit and the undemable feeling of peace and blessings gained from living anb obedient and loving life are a witness to me of something that I have known for a long time: if we live the gospel how we are supposed to, we won't have to tell people that we are "good christian," they will already know it.
the shepherd doesn't follow the lost sheep, the 1 in 99, because he knows it will easily follow him back to the herd. He follows the lost sheep even though it will run away and fight not to know the truth that the fold is the safest and most comfortable place for that sheep. I testify that Christ wants the same for each and every single one of his children. God looketh on the heart. We must not judge others.
This place is such a bubble. Like BYU but WAY MORE OF A BUBBLE. It's a little bit of a culture shock, but I love all of the awesome people that i have met and am having so much fun! I hope that everything is going well with all of you and I love you all so much.
These are the picture Sister Jenne sent us! It looks like she is having an awesome time and I am so proud of her and what she is doing/preparing to do on her mission!