It’s P-day! These first couple days have definitely been busy, with classes, seminars, and studying taking up most of our time. We’ve met our entire zone, which consists of maybe 20 Elders and Sisters. I’m pretty sure that right now it’s the smallest zone in the MTC. Our zone includes Indonesia, Malaysia, Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, Kiribati, and the Marshall Islands. There might be more areas in our zone that just don’t have any missionaries here right now, but I’m not sure. The MTC is actually pretty empty right now, but over the next month or two it’s going to start picking up. The next group who will be joining our zone has about 35 missionaries, so that’ll be pretty crazy. Right now, all of the elders in our zone are spread out into a whole 2 rooms.
My district has 5 elders and 2 sisters. The 5 elders are myself, Elder Graves, Elder Schmitt (Who are my companions), Elder Erickson, and Elder Choi (Who are going to Malaysia/Singapore). All of the Elders are awesome, and it’s really cool being in a group with all of them. The 2 sisters are Sister Smith and Sister Baird, who are both going to Indonesia. They’re also awesome, and we’ve got a great district. Elder Graves was called as district leader when we met the branch presidency last night, and I’m the senior companion in our trio for the next 2 weeks. All of the elders in our district say prayers together every morning and evening right after getting up and right before going to bed. I’m already pretty used to having a companion (or companions), and I definitely feel blessed to have gotten such amazing companions.
The MTC is pretty nice, with T4 (The building our classroom and chapel are in) being totally gorgeous. R5, our residence hall, is pretty good too. T4 has huge windows in every classroom and murals on each side of each floor. Our classroom is on the 6th floor, right at the top of the building, and you can look out over the entire MTC from it.
The food in the cafeteria is pretty good, and they have some really interesting juice flavors. My favorite is probably the Strawberry Banana Orange Juice, which is really good. They also have caffeine free Coca Cola, which is pretty good too. There’s also the sack lunch line, which is where you go if you aren’t in missionary attire (like right after working out, or on P-day). That food is less good, but is still edible.
Bahasa Indonesia is coming along. We’ve already started learning the missionary purpose in Indonesian, which we’re supposed to have memorized by Monday. The first couple lines are “Mengundang orang lain untuk datang kepada Kristus dengan membantu mereka menerima…”. It’s a pretty weird language, with words borrowed from what seems like every other language ever. The Malay elders in our district and us can have conversations in our respective languages, and understand most of what the other is saying. We’ve started replacing words in our prayers with words in our languages, like saying “Bapa Surgawi” instead of “Heavenly Father”, or “kami” instead of “we”. So far we have two teachers, Brother Tuttle and Sister Bartholomew, neither of whom have spoken any English to us, even though they’re both from Utah.
Apparently there was a devotional on Tuesday that had an apostle, so it’s pretty disappointing that we just missed that. On the bright side, we were talking to one brother who said that he couldn’t say which apostle it would be, but we do know that there will be an apostle speaking in the next 6 weeks. We have devotionals every Sunday and Tuesday.
On Sundays we meet as a branch (which is our zone), and have sacrament meeting, priesthood/relief society, and a district meeting. Sund gays also include a walk (I believe as a zone, but it might be as districts), a devotional, and a movie night, where we watch church videos.
Fridays are P-days, and we actually have quite a bit of stuff to get done. We still get up at 6:30 (Elder Schmitt gets up at 6 every morning, then wakes the rest of us up at 6:30), and after we brush our teeth, go to the bathroom, and get changed, we immediately went over to the laundry room to run our laundry. Right now we don’t really have much stuff to wash, but we still went anyway. Later, we have exercise time, and at 1:00 we go to the temple as a zone. At 6, P-day is over, and we go to class.
I’ve taken a couple of pictures, but my camera is in our Residence Hall, which is on the other side of campus, so I guess I’ll send those next week. For now, just know that I’m doing well, and am gradually starting to adjust to missionary life.
Saya tahu bahwa Bapa Surgawi mengasihi kita, Yesus Kristus adalah Juruselamat kita, dan Kitab Mormon adalah tuhasi-suci. Kita mengasihi Gereja Yesus Kristus Dari Orang-Orang Suci Zaman Akhir.