WE just received a message from Sister Smith that she is currently leaving the MTC and will be traveling to Munich, Germany today. She was very excited to go to Germany. She said they’d be traveling on the train in Munich aug Deutschel and placing Book of Mormons on the train as they travel, she was excited about that. She’s grown so much spiritually in the MTC in England. She is a strong girl and eager to share her testimony with the people of Europe in any area she is asked to serve. Once she’s assigned her first area we will share her address. Prayers for safe travel! She’s super excited!
The sisters in my distrikt put on a Christmas in July this week! haha- It was so fun. We decorated the room like crazy, sang and listened to hymns all day, carolled to other distrikts and gave each other our favorite treats from the store. We also wrote notes. It was a surprise to the Elders and they loved it and were so grateful- it’s nice to brighten their day. When we carolled to the distrikt next to ours- the only other 6-week distrikt here- they laughed and shut the door on us, but we came back and finally the third time they let us finish- haha everyone was laughing so hard. This MTC is a good time. I love how small it is, everyone knows everyone and all the lessons are extremely personal. We even sang Silent Night in German the night before- it’s a really strict tradition in Germany to only sing that on Christmas Eve- and the Elders didn’t catch on.. I think one even said, ”I wish it was Christmas tommorow.” I love surprising people!
One of our teachers who went to our mission told us about rolling Rs in our mission- you have to do it with the back of your throat. That was a bad decision on his part because the whole rest of the day we all sounded like some kind of beast trying to growl. It was pretty funny- one Elder, Elder Howarth, was so obsessed with it he caried on ryin to roll his Rs in the back of his throat all week. Rolling Rs in the back of your throat is not like the Spanish way and it is different to scraping your throat- it’s similar to some bird calls. It’s difficult unless you already have that talent. We are told we will pick up so much more in the field. Everyone doubts themselves because it’s really hard to learn German in 6 weeks! Still, we are always reminding each other of how much we have already accoplished- teaching 2 lessons a day in German and holding converstaions, bearing our testimonies and giving talks in German. Our teacher says we are excelling the norm! That’s a releif because we really work hard- it’s nice to hear it pays off!
He also told us about the food we will be eating- some of it is scary stuff. One is congealed big’s blood with fat- like a blood sausage- but still a lile moist and spread over bread… like blood fat on bread. Another is a meat that is liquidized, stirred and baked into a loaf. After baked, it has a consistency similar to jello…We were all very apprehensive after that. We will survive, though and it will be lovely! He also showed us all the amazing hikes and landscapes we can see on P-Days! That was exciting!
I’m having a lovely time, learning loads about teachig and the Gospel and GERMAN and I love this work so, so much.
Love, Sister Smith
Another great week has passed at the MTC! Time is really flying by. The new sisters are pretty cool and we have one from Sweden and another from Holland with us. We have started doing a zone prayer (which means all the sisters here pray together) and it is awesome. You never know what language a sister might pray in. Sometimes English, German, Swedish, Italian or whatever their native or new tongue may be. It is truly an amazing experience. Our district also took a stress management class this week. It was much needede- trying to learn German and teach people in German and talk in German on Sunday- but it was also really fun. Our teacher first took 6 of us who were available down to the cafeteria and told us to get spaced out so we could ”lift an elephant”, yes an imaginary elephant. So he says find your elephant and we all do and then squat to lift it up. The teacher got really into it and said you have to lift it in two parts like you would a really heavy weight. At this point all 6 of us are laughing really hard. Then the teacher lifts the ”elephant” above his head and we all hear something break. It was his pants. He shouted ”oh no I’ve ripped my pants” and the 6 missionaries just lost it laughing so hard. I don’t know if that’s how he meant us to releive stress but we were definitely less stressed after watching our teacher do something embarrassing! After that we headed back to class and had the real stress management course with the other 2 missionaries who were busy before.
Another noteworthy thing that happened this week was the 4th of July! Our whole disrict (yes, even my awesome sport of a companion who is Australian) dressed in red, white and blue. WE sang patriotic songs all day, went outside during our personal time to pledge the allegiance and were generally patriotic throughout the day, drawing pictures of the flag on the whiteboard and saying ”Merica” a lot. Our teachers were sports, but still hilariously annoyed by the celebration. The chefs at dinner themed the dinner for the holiday and made us barbeque chicken with potatoes and then applie pie and iced cream for dessert. Everyone is so unbeleivably nice here and I really love it!
Sunday, always everyone’s favorite day, we had a fast and it was surprisingly nice. I know that I was blessed because I felt amazing all day, even without food. I was nevery even hungry. Blessings come to the sincere and heart and to the obedient. That is true! One of our lessons on sunday was about the ”eye single” missionary- or a missionary who is totally focused on their purpose. The MTC President taught it and told us some great stories about great examples of missionaries. One missionary companionship had to cut across a field to get home safely and were surpised to find that it was an air base for the African country there were serving in! The police surrounded them and took them captive. After several phone calls, the missionaries were told they could go. One elder refused to leave without teaching them about the gospel and all of the police members later joined the church and look back on that day as a great blessing. They have all come into so many blessings after finding their faith. I know that God finds a way for his missionaries!
Why be a missionary if I’m not going to dedicate myself to the work? I definitely love to do this work and am defintely completely focused on the work.
the pictures are of my district trying to take a fourth of july picture and of my view from my room 🙂
Wow! it’s been 2 weeks out now and I’ve leraned so much. It’s amazing how much you can learn another language when the spirit is involved. My district is called the Alma district and we are one of two Alpine German speaking districts at the MTC. It’s just us and the english language learners (4 of them) and the native english speakers going english speaking. It’s a small MTC and we get to go outside ALL the time! It’s a really great thing! There are 4 elders and 4 sisters in my district and we all really get along well and have SO MUCH FUN! It’s going to be sad for all of us sisters to leave the elders, not able to email or write them, after we have all become great friends, but we are okay because we know we have the ability to be great missionaries.
I’m havign a great time. The hardest things her eare staying awake during the morning personal study, which is immediately after breakfast and is always a little warm and dead silent, and learning GERMAN. It’s really hard work, leraning and immediately applying another language. Time is split between grammar, leraning lessons in German and learning new words and preparing those lessons to teach to our investigators each night. However, I have noticed that having a solid foundation in German has helped me quite a bit so I count myself lucky for that.
This Sunday we are having a 100 percent German sacrament meeting and we will all be bearing our testimonies in German! We already pray in German and teach in German so I suppose this is the next logical step!
Today all the English-bound missionaries are going into the field and last night all the Alpine sisters sang them ”God be With you Till we meet again” right after they went into their rooms. It was a really sweet moment. We’ve known these girls since the airplane so it is weird to see them all leave without us! We will get to do this with 2 more sets of missionaries before we embark on our journey to Munich and then wherever we are assigned!
The coolest thing so far happened last Sunday. All the missionaries met in the biggest room here and sang I Am a Child of God in 7 different languages, one for each laguage natively spoken: German, Italian, Spanish, Portugese, Mandarine Chinese, English and Afrikaans. We also sing German hymns all the time! Like 7 times a day at least. It’s really fun watching the enlgish speakers wonder why we are saying different words than they are every time we sing together.
I can’t wait to get out there and let people know how individually God knows and loves each of us. That was kind of the unprepared yet significant theme of our last sacrament meeting. I can feel it even as I teach our teachers masquerading as investiagtors they know or have taught personally. This week we finished teaching our first investigator and he said he would like to join the church and has learned a lot, then we got to hear his real story through our teacher who served in Frankfurt. It has been a really humbling and amazing experience. One of the sisters says, ” We continually scarf down humble pie as we try to relate to these people who speak German perfectly when we barely even know the language.” I can definitely attest to the scarfing down humble pie bit!
I’ve never laughed more or gotten to know and love people more quickly- though I blame that on my hilarious Australian companion Sister Angeloudis who can not stop laughing, which is a great thing. I can feel the big and small blessings being poured upon me every day from the spirit from carrying out the Lord’s work. This truly is the true and full gospel!
Until next time,
p.s. We got to go on the church history tour of Prestton and some smaller towns today… pictures to come and details later.
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