I am over halfway done with the MTC. 19 days left until I fly to ITALY!!! It is crazy when I think about - after my time here in this strange world of the MTC, I am going to ITALY. Not for a semester, not for a trip, but for a whole 16 months. Isn't that weird?! I am so used to moving and changing my life every few months ( think of the life I lived last year - Jerusalem, EFY, and BYU) but now I will be in one country, doing the same thing for a year and half. The best part is that I will being doing what I love!!! Serving the Lord on a mission. Every now and then, I will look down at the name tag over my heart and just think "WOAH.... I am a MISSIONARY!" I love my name-tag, I love my companion, I love my district, I love Italian, I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!!
This week has gone by so fast, it's hard to believe that it is already P-day again. What has happened in the last week? Sorella Stephen's and I are slowly but surely getting a little better at Italian. When I teach a lesson, words just come out of my mouth that I didn't think I knew. Isn't the Spirit amazing? Afterwards, S. Stephens gives me a huge hug and we immediately thank Heavenly Father for His help throughout the lesson. I still LOVE my companion SO much! Seriously, we get along so well together. I couldn't have asked for a better companion! On Tuesday, M. Russell Ballard talked at our devotional!!! CRAZY!!!! We were like 7 rows back too. ( we were supposed to be in the Choir but we were one seat short .... literally have THAT many people who want to sing) :) He didn't say anything that was mind-blowing but he said some important things. Here is what he said - We know a LOT! Have confidence when you talk because you KNOW things!! The work is important and WE are important. The work does not end after our mission either. I had such a strong thought about my future family and how I need to remember to always TEACH the gospel, just how mama and daddy did that for me. Anyway, I need to let an Anziano on the computer. Oh!! My district is INCREDIBLE!!! I love them soooo much! The Anziani call me "Mom" which literally makes my day every time they do it.
Thursday, February 21, 2013
Week 2- MTC
I finished week 2 of the MTC!!! It is so crazy to think I have been here for 2 weeks already and yet I think to myself "it has only been 2 weeks!?" That means I have only 4 weeks left of the MTC before I hit Italy. Does this make me excited? Yes. Am I scared? Yes. I am freaking out. The language is definitely difficult but when I stop and think about it, I realize that I have definitely been blessed by our Heavenly Father with the ability to learn a language. I know a LOT more than I would have with out the Lord. Seriously though, it has been two weeks and yet I can Pray in Italian, bare my testimony in Italian, and almost have simple conversations in Italian. Sorella Stephens and I are still struggling quite a bit and have felt pretty humbled while learning. I still love her SOOOO much!! I was really blessed to be given her as a companion. Whenever I face new and difficult challenges, I deal with them sooooo much better with a good and constant friend by my side. That is how Sorella Stephens is for me - an AMAZING companion who is ALWAYS there for me!
So I want to share a really cool experience I had this week. On Monday we had the opportunity to teach in TRC - Teaching Resource Center. Basically we get to teach church members for 20 minutes or so on whatever they need, whether it be a spiritual thought or addressing a concern. We ended up teaching an actually working who was fluent in multiple languages instead of a volunteer b/c of the high number of stinken Italian missionaries. Neither of us understood a single word that she said. Her accent was sooooo thick and spoke sooooo fast that S. Stephens and I would simply turn and blink at one another. It was great. But then we shared our favorite scriptures. I shared Alma 26:35-37 and Sorella Stephens shared 1 Nephi 3:7 in Italian. While I was reading, it just clicked in my mind what I was saying. The Spirit poured over me and in the room and I started to CRY. Sorella Stephen's scripture had the same effect. This same experience happened with our second volunteer too who was an RM from Milan. WOW! We learned that the Spirit makes up from what our language lacks, whether we can actually speak it or not. It was so testimony building and gave us faith to keep working hard. This IS the Lord's work that we are doing. I love being a missionary!
Fun events at the MTC: Last Thurday I ran into my friend Carlos at the MTC. I haven't seen him since my freshman year of school and it was soooooo wonderful to see him! This week I got a package from the Mendivil family. Yes, the Mendivil Family. You know, the cousin's of Erin Ramberg Hoff? It made my whole day and week! I also ran into another friend, Brok, who I haven't seen for almost 3 years. I love it!!
Io so che Dio ci ama! Io so che il Vangelo di Gesu Cristo e vero.
Thursday, February 14, 2013
I would LOVE letters from Dear Elder!I still cannot believe that I am a missionary. Almost every morning I have woken up so confused as to where I am and what I am doing. Then I think "dang... I am a missionary!" It is so GREAT!! I love being called Sorella or Sister by EVERYONE! So far the MTC is amazing. I absolutely love it here.
My companion (mia collega) is incredible!!!! She is soooooo much like my roommate Lauren and has the funnest and most carefree personality. I love her :)
The Italian has been... difficult but good. I keep trying to pronounce things with a French accent instead of Italian which is funny because Italian is VERY straight forward. Sometimes I sit in class and think "How in the WORLD am I going to do this?!" I'll get it. Last Friday we began teaching in Italian. Yep. Two days after entering the MTC. The most I could say was "Mi chiama Sorella Jameson" so you can imagine how that went.
The thing I wanted to share the most about my experience so far is just HOW important missionary work is - along with my purpose. It is on the first page of chapter 1 of PMG. "To invite others to come unto Christ by receiving the Restored gospel through Faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end." WOW!
I just feel like this will be one of the MOST important things I have EVER done in my entire life!