August 26, 2015


Provo MTC


Elder Merrell

Week 2 (MTC)

Hola Everyone!

I'm basically a seasoned veteran here at the MTC, 2 weeks in! Just kidding, but really its quite weird that most of the Elders and Sisters that entered the same day as me are already out in the field! Thats crazy to think about!

I really don't know what to report! I mean basically every day is the same with the exception of Sunday (Church and Scripture Study) and Wednesday (P-Day). A typical day consists of:

Wake up and Get Ready (Occasionally we have Service in the morning on Saturday and Monday)
Scripture Study
Gym Time
3 Hour Class
4 Hour Class
3 Hour Class
Get Ready and Go to Bed
(Typically in the Class we will do Language Lessons, Practice Teaching investigators, and Gospel instruction as well! The teachers here are fantastic and our district (class) is so close we all love spending time and learning together)

Now before you think I say this in a negative connotation, I promise I am not. I know that at first glance that may look like a horrible day, but let me be the first to tell you all that it is amazing! In fact probably some of the best days of my life! I feel the love of God more powerful here every day than I have anywhere else in my entire life! I know because we are doing the Lord's work and preparing to teach his gospel around the world he blesses us more than I could have even imagined before I came here! This truly is the work of the Lord, and because of his Joy in our willingness to serve, he promises us blessings and love and I see both of those 24 hours a day and 7 days a week!

On a side note, the only negative is that everyday we walk out and see the mountains and canyon and it is just so pretty! Especially on a day like today where it is overcast, cool, and rainy! I need to take a picture and send it to you all so you can see what I am talking about!

I guess one of the first things I can talk about is that the basketball gym opened this week!!! As you might imagine, I am just stoked about that. It was closed the whole first week we were here because they were refinishing the floor, but it opened last Wednesday and I am thrilled! Every morning after breakfast we get to go play for an hour! It feels so good to be back on the court playing! Workout time really is a blessing in the busy life of a missionary! Even today my room woke up 30 minutes early and got our laundry done so that we could head over to the gym and play for a couple hours during our scheduled laundry time! It is just too fun!

On Sunday and Tuesday nights we have devotionals! The whole MTC goes to the gym and they change the whole place into a huge auditorium (for lack of better words). These devotionals are incredible! I must admit, each time we are entering the devotional we all secretly hope for an Apostle, but each time no matter who it is, it honestly hits each one of us with exactly what we need to hear! Their talks are focused on missionary work and they are truly led by God what they need to say to us! On Sunday we had Elder Clark speak to us. I cant remember exactly but he is the Head of Missionary department or something! So it was super relevant! He gave the best talk! Also last night we had Elder Corbridge of the Seventy, and he gave us the best talk as well! These two nights are seriously my favorite!

On Tuesday Nights after the devotional we all head back to the classroom and have a share meeting with our district! Last night was just astonishing. Ours turned from sharing what we liked about the talk into deep deep testimony meeting with everyone....the Spirit was so strong. Tears were everywhere with some of the Elders and Sisters I didn't even expect to see. It truly was an astonishing sight. It was another one of many many moments that the Holy Ghost told me that I was at the exact place God wanted me to be, doing exactly what he wanted me to be doing, and becoming the exact person he wants to mold me into. I can't deny the Spirit of God that is felt here at the MTC and especially with the great group of missionaries God is blessing me with!

Also on Sunday and Tuesday's we have MTC choir. Everyone I have every known that went to the MTC tells me that I must join the Choir, and I am beyond glad I did. It is awesome to sing praise to Jesus Christ with about 1,000 other Missionaries that are here for the same reason as me! To help other people come to know their Savior Jesus Christ.

As I mentioned last week, I was worried about how well me and my companion would get along when we met....but it is incredible! We are bestfriends! We get along 10x better than I could've ever imagined! We sing all the time (he has an amazing voice) and he has helped me grow my confidence in singing!! Before my mission, I would have never been caught dead singing in public, but now, He and I just bust into harmony wherever we are! It's so fun! Others in the district join in as well! Our two best are Nearer My God to Thee and The Lion Sleeps tonight! One day 4 of us sang The Lion Sleeps tonight in the shower and when we got out of our shower stalls we realized we had assembled quite the crowd! It was so funny! Everyone kept saying how good it sounded and it was so surprising and funny!

We get to go to the Temple again today! I couldn't be more excited! Going last week was so awesome! I am truly gonna miss the House of the Lord while I am in Argentina (the closest temples are around 5-10 hours away so we most likely wont be able to attend) but it will all be worth it knowing that I am helping families come unto Jesus Christ and be able to go the Temple and be sealed together for all Eternity! What a special blessing the Lord gives us! One of my favorite quotes I love to think about is:

"I am happy to leave my family for 2 years, so that I can help other families be together for all Eternity"

2 years is such a small price to pay in order to help other families achieve so great a blessing from God! I am so grateful my family has obtained that and I can't wait to see the joy of other families when they realize their eternal potential that God has given them as well!

Well, Im sorry its so long again! I just get typing and I am so excited about what we are doing on the Lord's errand and I want to share it with everyone and so I just start typing away! There isnt much more to report here! Just loving every second! Thanks for all the mail! It sounds weird because back home all we do is text and tweet and Instagram etc. But here on the mission receiving mail from friends and family back home is a moment the whole district looks forward to every day! So thank you to everyone who has been sending me letters! Like I said last week, you can use the website and they will print it out and deliver it to me same day here (AND my mom said it is actually FREE) or you can go with the old Handwritten letters which is like a birthday present here at the MTC! (My address was in my letter last week) I would love to hear from all of you and see how your lives are going and I PROMISE to write back whether it be an email or a letter in your mailbox.

I love you all, thanks so much for the support of me being out here! I couldn't have been blessed with better family or friends! I know this is where I am supposed to be, I know the Church is true, and I know Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father love each one of us and have a plan for us.


Elder Willardson


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