Just so you guys know, I will be sending the majority of info about the mission to you so that I have time to write all of you. First business: I have not received an email from dearElder yet? I have not been able to give ashley the stuff yet, and yes i did find two pairs of pants that I assume are both suit ones. I will send back one of them so that they stay nice for my return. for a scripture I want John 16:33. Thanks!
Okay now to the fun stuff! The MTC is so great! I cant believe anyone wouldnt have a fun time here. The spirit is so strong and the classes are excellent. Tagalog is a blast! I am absolutely loving that class so much. It is also one of the hardest things I've ever done in my life. I was the first one to arrive to my class on day one, and when I came inside the teachers started talking at me in fluent tagalog. It was hilarious as they attempted to teach me how to answer their questions using charades and hand signs. For each class they speak as much tagalog as possible in order to teach us as if we were children learning the language. From what i've heard that is pretty common for teachers, as they try to teach us by immersion into the language. Its been amazing.
I have never studied or prayed so hard in my entire life. We do at least 60 mins of companionship, personal, and language study every day and woah is it fun! My testimony is growing and I am starting to develop an even deeper relationship with my savior.
The key to the MTC is humility. A lot of the guys who don't enjoy it as much as I do, feel that lessons are redundant and that they have learned the gospel principles already. The key to enjoying it is to recognize that you don't know everything. To recognize
that your understanding is limited and that you WILL experience growth. You don't want your testimony to be the same as when you start the mtc. I am already growing and certainly hope I grow way more than where I'm at now. The spirit is real! i have never
been to a place where they teach in this way! every single lesson is focused completely on love and using the spirit to understand your investigators. preach my gospel is an inspired book. instead of giving lessons, we are teaching people. The focus shifts from the lesson we prepare to the people who are prepared. Its amazing and such a testimony builder of the hastening of the lords work.
My companions, district, and roomates are the best. First of all there are SO MANY philippines elders in the mtc. We had 105 new ones come in the same day as I did. That's a third of the new missionaries! My district consists of 14 of us, called to either Manila or San Pablo. We are all learning tagalog and are all having such an amazing time together. In my room we have Elders johnson, grant, lainhart, page, litchfield (my companion) and dyches. We are all already best friends. We have a giant philippines flag in our room on our door. We also have a room ritual of saying "Mag-papa binyag ka ba?" (will you be baptised?) every time we enter the room, to which an insider will reply "opo" (yes) and let us in. Its so much fun learning a crazy language together, but we are progressing slowly but surely. I have learned how to say my prayers in tagalog as well as have learned greetings and introductions. our branch president is super nice and you can tell he lves the gospel. The entire mtc is a big family. i cant say how many times ive heard "welcome to the mtc" in the last three days. I love it here. i was meant to be here, with this group and im enjoying every minute of it. Its super weird having to stick next to a companion all day long but i'm having a good time.
Elder litchfield is a good elder and I am enjoying being with him.
Today is p day and we got to go to an endowment session in the provo temple! it was so cool to all be in the temple and to be surrounded by so many missionaries. The spirit is so strong in the temple and i am so glad i got to go. we are gonna play some bball later today and i'm excited for that. we are going to play manila elders vs san pablo which is gonna be fun. The food in the mtc is pretty good, the chocolate milk is really good!! i've had so much of that stuff already.
Days are super busy but so much fun! for those of you at home, read the book of Mormon! it is an inspired book and is the best way to be happy! Also don't be afraid to share with your friends. Not even a book of Mormon or your testimony, just share your love an your light with the people around you. I am gonna try to send pictures but none of us rookie missionaries have figured it out yet. Lots of love my family! miss you guys!