Saturday, January 23, 2016

MTC Week 6 - 48 hours and 3 minutes

Holy cow, I'm almost there. I leave the MTC and the United States in 48 hours! Honestly though I'm so ready to leave the MTC. It's been great to be here, and I've really learned a lot, But at the same time, I've put on 10 pounds and learned almost all of the grammar lessons. There isn't much here for me anymore. So good bye Utah, Good bye snowy mornings and terrible drivers, and Hello tropical jungles and humid days. 

Things that happened this week... First off, Monday morning Elder Noble and I had a really terrible lesson. Actually It went very well, but I was the only one talking, so I had to listen to her, listen to the spirit, and think through the doctrine on my own. Lessons never go well when only one person talks. So afterward Elder Noble and I did a debrief of what things we can fix so that he feels comfortable teaching. During this time some random lady walked into the room we were in and started asking questions. Strangely enough, my tongue was bound, and my ability to speak in Spanish was gone, which forced Elder Noble to talk to her and find out what she wanted. I understood well enough to figure out that she works in the TRC department, which is where we teach fake investigators, and that she had some questions about baptism. Her mother is Catholic, but she wanted to find the true church. Finally when it came time to set the appointment I was allowed to help Noble out. We set an appointment for Wednesday morning.

We taught her around 8:30 and we prepared to teach the restoration, focusing on what makes our church different. Because we weren't restricted by time we got to teach her the whole lesson in about 45 minutes. She is deeply spiritual and was well versed in the Bible, which made our job a bit easier. We made sure she understood everything and resolved any questions or concerns she had. On top of that, our teaching was just rocking it! I'd share a small portion of doctrine, ask a question that made her ponder the doctrine, listen closely to her response, then Elder Noble would testify of the doctrine, share a little more, ask another question, and the cycle repeats. At the end of the lesson she was concerned because several other churches have told her that if she prayed she'd know that theirs was the right church, but it never worked. So we invited her to read the introduction to the Book of Mormon on her own, ponder the things we taught, and then pray to God. We were unable to set up a return appointment because of our weird departure schedules, but when we sent a different companionship to teach her, the TRC department told us she had decided to take the discussions through TRC and that we didn't need to teach her anymore. Sounds like she got her answer!

Also on Wednesday was a World-Wide Broadcast to all of the missionaries. The basic gist of it was to put all the missionaries on the same page for teaching. They talked a lot about how to teach effectively, as well as how to teach People instead of teaching lessons. Elder Bednar and Elder Oaks spoke, the young women's general president, and several of the general missionary presidency spoke. There was a lot of emphasis on utilizing the members, especially in the case of reactivating others. So if it's been a few weeks since you said anything to the Missionaries in your area, Get On It! When they ask for referrals, give them the names of people you know who have moved, who are sick, who just lost a family member, who have just changed schools, or anything else like that. Help them out with fellowshiping and ask them what you can do to help. We as missionaries need the help of the members. We can do a lot of finding, but unless members take a part in teaching, we'll only baptize 20% of those people. We Need Your Help!

The rest of the week was fairly standard, although a lot more sad this time around. I've made so many good friends here, and I really love the people in my district. I'm really going to miss these guys, and we've been cherishing all the time we have together. As ready as I am to leave the MTC, I'm going to miss the relationships I've found in my time here. Several of the sisters will be leaving around 2:30 Monday morning, so today and Sunday are the only days we'll have left. I'm getting depressed just thinking about it.

But it's okay because in the next email I'll have tons of pictures of Argentina!! After we hit Buenos Aires, we'll have a 14 hour bus ride to Posadas, and the next day we'll head to Paraguay to get visas, and from there disperse to our areas. This basically means that I'll have 2 straight days to take pictures of the beautiful country side. Keep checking the BlogSpot my parents are moderating, because that's where all the pictures are going to show up.

I love you all a lot, and I'm so glad to have your support while I'm on my mission. You guys have been such a great influence, and I wouldn't be the missionary I am without you guys. Thanks for everything you've done!

¡Buenos Días!

Hey look who it is! I found Elder Bigelow! Funny story, apparently he's been in my class building since he got here, and I ran into him last Saturday Night. My companion was talking to a sister from his home town and as I was looking around at the others in her class, and I recognized Ean's name tag. So I called him by his first name, to which he responded, in perfect missionary fashion, "My names Elder Bigelow... but, um, yeah that's me..." So I introduced myself we got this picture the next day at the Temple. 

This is Elder Orton, one of members of District F, who showed up Dec. 16 going to Buenos Aires South. And the other one is Elder Orton, who is the district leader of District F!

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