Dear Family and Friends!
I made it past the first week! I have to admit I was a little shell shocked the first few days, but I am loving the MTC now! We still are working extremely hard, but we have adjusted and are learning to love the work. I have lots of cool stories to share! Guess who I saw this last Sunday? I’ll give you a hint: he’s an apostle…his name starts with an ‘H’ and he strikes fear into the hearts of the sinners everywhere! Yup, Elder Holland came to the MTC! He and his son spoke to us during devotional and it was really great. They testified of Joseph Smith and I was in the choir and we were able to sing Praise to the Man for the apostle and his family and I swear we were one step below the Mormon Tabernacle Choir :).
I know I mentioned it before, but I am in a trio and the three of us make up our district lol. We have two teachers, Irmao Lefevere and Irmao Neilson and they both bring so much to our learning. We still teach lessons about every day, and it is crazy how far we have come! We are able to teach lessons without any notes now! I admit, we take a while to think and conjugate and then to speak, but it is so nice to be able to communicate what I want to say, even if it is slow and sometimes difficult. My companions and I have been setting some awesome goals and we are memorizing 10 new words a day (5 verbs and 5 nouns) and 2 phrases. It doesn’t seem like much, but we already have 100 new words memorized and at least 20 phrases! (Memorizing phrases is super useful because you memorize the grammar and sentence structure of that phrase and it is easy to substitute out words and make similar phrases, which makes speaking a WHOLE lot easier).
My companions are super fun! Sister Mobley has a very loving, yet matter of fact demeanor and she always references her cats in our lessons (when we have to make sentences etc.) Sister Horn is a very sweet and outgoing individual as well; we are all different, but I am so grateful to have them in my life. We have found our niche and are all able to get along and laugh with one another all the time! I always have Sister Mobley stories, (she gave me permission to share these 🙂 ) #1) I was talking to an elder and he asked me how I felt about the Vikings, and I was like ‘I’m not a fan, mostly just because of where I grew up and the support I have to have for my team” Sister Mobley chimed in eventually and said “I like the Vikings! They were a very commanding people with good war tactics” lol. “Sister Mobley we meant the football team, not the people.” Another of my favorites was just the other day when we all were home getting ready for bed. We were talking about dehydration and sister Mobley told us that she heard about a woman who was stuck in her car for weeks and survived dehydration by sucking on a button! We told her we just couldn’t believe it and we all laughed. A little while later Sister Horn and I said “Sister Dean, found dead in a ditch. She choked on a button, but her body was hydrated” LOL, this may not be so funny to you, but we were all bent over with laughter! After a long day of Portuguese we get very silly at night.
Not only is the language coming along wonderfully, but the spiritual growth I am witnessing is crazy! I know that this year and a half is not in the least bit my time, but it is all His time. I want to be as obedient as I can so I can be privy to His guidance and to be an instrument in His hands for bringing happiness to all of my brothers and sisters. It really is indescribable the things that are happening to me as I turn my cares over to the study and to the work :). One of y companions is having a slightly more difficult time with the language, but we set goals and practice HARD and pray HARD. We were going into teach our first lesson to a new investigator, Thaigo, and I was worried for her because me and our third companion had been advancing more rapidly and I was afraid she was discouraged. We had been planning for this lesson for quite a time and we said a powerful prayer before we knocked on the door with pleas to let the language come smoothly so we can convey our love and our message to Thiago. We met Thiago and as it was this sister’s turn to speak I looked over ready to help her, but she didn’t need it! She looked him in the eye and delivered her portion of the lesson and the spirit was there and touched me immensely! I know she worked so hard to deliver her part of the lesson, but that was a witness of the aid Heavenly Father gives to His missionaries.
We were also able to go the Temple in Provo! Every P-day we get to attend 🙂 . I love the temple so much and am so thrilled to have it in my life. I love all of you and cherish all of the family and friends who took the time to go to the temple with me over the past few months!
I love you all so much and pray that you will find missionary opportunities in your daily lives because they are wonderful and make me happy beyond explanation! Keep your letters coming! I cherish them while I can!