Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Two Weeks of Heaven at the MTC - Erica Style

Highlights from June 28th email:

Oh my where to start! I feel like I was just sitting here! Yet it's a week later! Ha! The MTC really is a time warp! :) But felicidades to me, I have officially been here for 2 weeks! Haha truth be told, it feels like I have been here my whole life... but in a good way! :) I love the MTC so much! I have honestly never been happier in my life. :)
Holding a "love note" from my comp
So this week was incredible in a thousand different ways! All week long we were surrounded by apostles and mission presidents and the likes! You could feel their presence! Haha the one bad side of that situation was that they took over our cafeteria and we got bumped to the gym. Ha! BYU catering all week long. It's cool though. They gave us lots of ice cream so we were Happy. Oh and one day we had Cafe Rio. You could say I died. I ate it so fast... Hannah would have said she was impressed. ;) But other than that, we love mission president training! especially because we got to attend the Work of Salvation Broadcast at the Marriott Center! Okay how incredible was that! I was more excited for that meeting than I have ever been for Christmas, no jokes. I was like shaking in my seat! It was so incredible and we are all obsessed with the Apostles! Seriously, they are cool. I hope that everyone was as inspired as I felt! Goodness we have work to do don't we! But I am just thrilled that we can do this work together. This is seriously the best thing. My favorite part was how they told us to just love the investigators! I feel like I have so much love ready to use when I'm out there! They will honestly be scared of how much I love them! I just adore them already! :) When the meeting started I had chills all over my body! Thats how strong the spirit was!!! So, if you missed it... GO WATCH IT! Like seriously do that before you even write me! ;)

Everyone going to Guatemala 7/24!

Goodness I love devotionals here. We had a devotional onTuesday and Sister Janice Kapp Perry spoke to us. She wrote quite a few primary songs and like every efy song you have ever heard. and surprise! She is like 80! BUT... that doesnt mean anything! She is HILARIOUS! hahahaha so she was telling us about how she met her husband and his first line to her... it was the best! Apparently she was doing a test for a clarinet and he said, "those lips were meant for more than clarinet playing!" saucy old man!!! Hahahaha, and then this old man of hers leapt off his chair and ran up to her and KISSED HER! ON THE MOUTH! hahaha! Want to know how to get a standing ovation at the MTC?... do this! It was the funniest thing of my life! They are the cutest couple. She also had us sing a medley of childrens songs that she wrote... haha... and one of the songs, We'll Bring The World His Truth, she changed the words for us from "We will be the Lord's missionaries" to "We are NOW the Lords missionaries"! AH! We are! I loved it! She is a sweet woman! She also sang us her testimony and said, imagine I am your grandma. You bet I did! Love you grandma :)
So I love studying. I am filling my spiritual canteen! hahahaha, I had to say that, I'm sorry. But we calculated how much time we will study on our misions.... 76.5 days. YES! I love it! I love reading the scriptures. and honestly I haven't met anyone here that doesn't love study time. It's my favorite. Class time is fun too. We have two new investigators! they are both our teachers but we pretend really well :) One of them is going really well and the other... we are struggling with! First time our investigators havent been like baptize me!  But I guess that's reality so we are trying everything we can! :) We do a lot of role play teaching as a companionship because Hermana Webster and I aren't very good at chatting... so we are trying to get better! Ha! The other day we were practicing and sometime things get mistranslated / sometimes I cant speak Spanish. I guess I ended up saying,  "podemos entrar su casa",  which is like "can we enter your house?"  Everyone was like, no. that's weird. dont say that. whoops!  Another time I told a lady she could give birth instead of show the light of Christ or something.... I'm trying! Hahaha. But really I am learning so much. We were teaching one of our elders the other day and I had the greatest experience! for the first ime in my life I felt myself straight up testify!  It was insane, I didn't stumble on any words, and this is in Spanish, and I was just testifying and it felt so powerful!  It was the most incredible thing ever! I totally felt the Holy Ghost take control! Ahhhhh, I can't wait to do that in real life! It is just an amazing feeling. I invite all of you to do that!
So I got to meet my mission president this week! What a sweet man! He and his wife are from Panama and are the first Panamanian (?) mission presidents ever! They are darling, and little!  Haha I already feel like a giant! They can't really speak English but I could understand them and that felt incredible. :) My mission president is like a smaller darker version of Elder Holland! the man can testify!  He has such an incredible testimony and he wants us to have the same thing! I am so excited to serve under him!  We asked if we could go to the temple while on our mission and he said, "if you bring a family there to get sealed."... so I guess I have work to do!  But then he eased up a bit and I'm pretty sure he will be taking us!  But really they are incredible!  Such hardworking inspired people:)
So now some adventure stories:) my companion Hermana Pister has been sick this week :( but that meant we got to do some things we nromally would not have done! like LEAVE THE MTC! we got to go to the student health center so she could get some medicine.  This place is a block away! and they let us walk!!!! ahahahahahhhhhhhhhhh! most exhilerating experience ever. no jokes!  We were partying with excitement when we left!  It felt unreal!  Then the sweet doctor man gave us pill bottles full of m&m's! haha!  We took a lot of pictures!  Then, oh my gosh, I saw my old hometeacher Zac Ipson!  Hahaha my companions freaked out a little when I starting yelling at the shirtless man running by us!  But we got a picture together and it was fun to see someone from the real world! :)

During gym time... I don't work out anymore... ha!  We play sand volleyball and kickball instead! I love it! and dad, you would be proud, I finally got my overhand serve down! ha! We usually play with our elders from our district, unless they ditch us for soccer. ha. we love them!  We are all seriously best friends. I instituted love circle in our district so we could bond more.  For those of you who dont know, love circle is when you put one person in the middle and everyone has to say 3 things they love about that person.  Oh except here we call it circulo de amistad.   Elder/sister relations are weird. but it has been really fun and everyone is so kind and sincere!  It's weird to think I didn't know these people two weeks ago!  Now they feel like family! :) And sometimes we feel like they don't like us... but then they leave us sweet messages ion the board!   We are just like their moms. but granted they are all 18 so they really do feel like our sons/brothers.

Oh in the Tuesday night devotional Sister Perry showed us her "family song" and told us to write one for our families... so as a district we wrote one! hahaha. It goes to the tune of spongebobs fun song... :) something like: f is for fmailies being forever, u is for unity, n is for nuestro proposito aqui in the mtc! and then the second verse is : m is for missions all over the world, t is for truth and right, c is for conversion through the holy ghost oh come unto Jesus Christ! haha our teachers... loved it. ha! speaking of teachers... Tim, my teacher is perfect!  You should marry her. WE LOVE HERMANA KITTO.  Most perfect human being ever. She teaches us so much and her and I have a lot of the same clothes so we are going to be gemelas one of these days! :)
I have another bug story! I was waiting in line for something when I felt something on my leg. I looked down and there are hundreds.... LITERALLY HUNDREDS... of ants on my leg! I guess I stepped in/was standing in an ant hill?!?! oh my word. some of them bit me. lets just say people think I'm weird since I flipped the heck out!  I must have looked like a crazy person. but honestly I can still feel them.  I probably shouldn't be complaining since the bug situation in Guatemala is a tad worse than it is here in Utah.  Oh well. I will survive!  Oh other sad news... my CTR ring broke in half. spontaneously! while on my hand. I don't know why but its really sad :(
Okay and thank you for all the amazing packages and letters! I have more food than I can eat in my room right now but I'm trying!  Haha, if you really love me then maybe send me some Dr. Pepper?   Oh and dear elders are my favorite thing in the universe.  Mom, if you sent me one everyday im pretty sure you'll be the greatest human being ever. ever! :)  Except our district leader is always hiding our letters from us which BUGS. but we get them eventually. oh elders. can't live with em (literally) can't live without em.
I love having companions.  They are the best people. I learn so much from them!  Like Hermana Pister is a boss at chatting it up and making people feel comfortable! and Hermana Webster is amazing at sharing her testimony! I am trying so hard to learn from both of them! they say that I'm good at making commitments with people, haha I think I just ask everyone to read, pray and get baptized, so I hope that's a good thing!  Those are like the only sentences I know forward and backwards in Spanish!  It's crazy how well we all get along. we have had a bad case of the giggles this week.  I swear everything we do is the funniest thing in this world!  Like whenever someone calls Hermana Pister (peaster),  "Sister Pisster".... I die!  I literally laugh so hard I can't breathe!  We just love laughing! And it's fine because Hermana Pister says if you aren't laughing hard and working hard then you aren't doing it right. and we are definitely doing both! ha. Seriously laughing is my outlet!  I probably do it too much!

Jet Pack vacuums!

Oh ps I'm sick. :( cough, sniffle. ugh. I guess that's what happens when your companion is sick! I'm taking dayquil and such just pray for me:)
Love you all so much and I miss you! I appreciate the prayers and letters and thoughts!!!
2 nefi 9:41
He is the way. the ONLY way. Never forget that.
Hermana Moore (mas) ;)

This Past week: Pero Ahora Lo Creo!

Oh my goodness! What a week! But really, this week was incredible. INCREDIBLE I TELL YOU!!!

So where to start! Oh, maybe I'll explain the title of this email. So we currently have two progressing investigators which means that we teach them a couple times a week.  They are our teachers but they are acting like people from their own missions. It is a pretty cool thing! I always get a little nervous before we go in and then I just end up loving it! On Monday we had the single greatest teaching experience. ever. We taught Elizabeth, who is Hermana Kitto. We had had a couple rough lessons with her. She straight up told us once, I don't believe what you are saying but I'll listen. ha! thanks! So this last lesson we decided to teach her about the restoration of the Gospel. We walked in and we felt ready. Little did we know that the Spirit would be so strong! Literally in minutes my heart was beating so fast and I just knew something felt different. We were chatting with her and then asked her why she keeps inviting us back. She said that she felt something different with us and she noticed that when she met with us, and other missionaries previously, so had a peace in her life. We told her this is the Spirit. then we all just felt impressed to tell her how much her Heavenly Father LOVES her! I felt His love for her! It was incredible! I had the opportunity to teach her about the restoration when Joseph Smith had the First Vision. Okay. the Spirit gave it actually because I have never been able to speak Spanish like I did in that moment.  I was so excited and at one point I think I even threw my hands in the air. I was speaking so fast I had no idea what I was saying! The gift of tongues is real. I can testify of that.  Then I gave Joseph Smiths account of the first vision. So here is my dirty little secret, I haven't memorized the First Vision in Spanish yet. It's kinda hard; but when I gave it to Elizabeth... I  don't know what happened. I have never felt myself speak with such power. im telling you the gift of tongues and the spirit was speaking for me! It's amazing how when you testify of things you really realize just how true it is.  How much you actually KNOW that what you are talking about is true. We all just sat there like blubbering babies but I don't care, it was one of the greatest moments of my life.  Then we asked her to pray. she always says no but this time she was like yes, I want to.  So we all knelt and prayed and she gave the sweetest prayer. She was praying and she said something along the lines of, "Father, I have heard this message before, many times before, and because of my hard heart I haven't believed it. Pero ahore lo creo."  That last part means, but now I believe.  Never have any other words sounded so sweet.  We asked her to get baptized and she said she would think about it.  After we left my companions and i just hugged each other and cried.  I have never felt this kind of joy before.  Or this much of it!  Now this was on  Monday night and this joy has literally not left me!  Even as I sit here typing! I cant even describe how happy I feel. Alma 26:16.  That's how I feel.  Inexpressible joy.  I literally feel like I floated on a cloud this entire week. It is described really well in Mosiah 2:41... interminable felicidad. never-ending happiness.  People. this is the happiest I have ever been. and it is from sharing this glad message! I invite ALL of you to join in on the happy parade! everyone is welcome. :)

We taught some other lessons this week. We have another investigator named Andreis. he is older and a family man but lsot his job so he is going through a rough time. We have been teaching him and it has been such a cool experience. its definitely different than teaching women... we cant rely so much on emotions. It's a learning experience. We asked him to pray and he said the sweetest prayer!  He thanked the Lord for us Hermanitas.  Ahh, we love him!  That means like little sisters!  I love people.  I SERIOUSLY LOVE THEM.  Never have I been so full of soo much love.  I love it!

 So other than lessons, this week has been full of amazing devotionals. we heard from Sister Sheri Dew, and two men that I don't remember the names of.  But oh my goodness life changing devotionals! one devotional talked about how sacred our call is. people keep telling us that we are set apart and we deserve to be led by the spirit. we just need to be worthy and let him take control!  I love that!  We also learned alot about magnifying our part in this work.  There is a saying, "what'ere thou art, act well thy part." oh my yes! i love this!  The speaker stressed that there are different parts to play in this world.  You are a part. you may be a 5, 8, or a 10, or whatever else.  If you are a 5... be a 5!  Be the best dang 5 the world has ever seen.  Because someone out there needs a 5.  They dont need an 8 or a 10 or a 100.  They need you.  They need YOUR testimony and your special witness.  They need your experiences and your love. so be you. be the best you. Heavenly Father created you just as you are supposed to be.  So now our job is to find our part. and to magnify the heck out of it.  I think I know my part. I feel like I was born for this work. Someone told me that your mission lasts your whole life, you just need to find a way to start it. Well, it's started. and I'm never letting it end!  I might as well just change my first name to Hermana. ;)
4000 missionaries going to a devotional

Oh I have been studying a lot about patience this week and I found this incredible talk.  Please read it! "Continue in Patience" by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf. It was for a priesthood session but I adore it. one line I loved: "Patience can transform ordinary men and women into saints and angels." I love that. A lot of people call us sisters at the MTC "angels". I kind of love it.  One of our investigators called us her angelitas.  Yeah I'm in love with that.  The errand of angels.  Yes. I am in love with that.  I LOVE THIS WORK.

I have been trying to study D&C 4 this week.  That section is amazing!  Amazing I tell you! I honestly have made it through 4 verses in 3 days.  There is too much good stuff!  I adore, adore, adore personal study time.  It's like so fun to search the scriptures!  The topical guide is my new best friend.  I just feel like I am learning so much!

Haha looking over this email  I feel like I need a reality check.  So many people have written me and asked me if I'm fluent yet and what its like to speak Spanish 24/7... ehhhhh...... so we try really hard to do that but it doesn't always happen.  In fact sometimes the gift of tongues is.... not so much absent... but its like just holding back to see what you can do. ;)  Exhibit A: me trying to explain the pre-existence in Spanish! HA!  I guess I said the reason we don't remember anything from the pre-earth life is because we passed through a candle. yes. I need to work on vocab obviously! haaaaaaaaa. my comp was dying and laughing so hard!  Speaking of comps. I'm in love with mine!  Seriously they are my soul sisters from the preexistence.  It's funny because we probably never would have been friends without being companions.; we are all so different but some how have so much fun and teach really well together!  We all have different strengths that compliment each other really well.

Oh we did TRC for the first time this week! TRC is where you go in and teach a Spanish speaker.  They are all members, we just teach them a spiritual thought. but surprise guess who my TRC person was!  President Magnusson's daughter!  Normally I'm not super good at chatting/getting to know someone at the beginning of a lesson, but when I make a connection like I did with her, gosh I could not shut up!  So that was a blessing.  That lesson we taught about joy... and boy oh boy did we all feel it!  Family!  This life is about having joy!  Let's be joyful!  It's just so happy to be joyful and I love it so much :).

So on our schedule there are alot, and I mean ALOT, of missionaries going to Korea. so we see them all day everyday and we have stsrted to make friends with them! :)  They are teaching us Korean. I am getting pretty good! no joke. I can say hello my name is Hermana Moore, how are you, and good morning! :)  They say my accent is good too.  I'm learning the alphabet next.  It's so fun. I love it! :)

OH MY GOSH THANK YOU FOR ALL THE LETTERS AND PACKAGES.  Who are you people!  You are too wonderful!  I got an incredible package from Linds and Hannah with everything and more. i cried. it was beyond perfect and I love them/ owe them my life. :)

So we sing in choir and apparently my face was on the mega tron! ha!  Like just my face, singing. luckily I wasn't doing anything stupid! ha! people kept coming up to me saying hey I saw you!  Some elders in my district told me that me "countenance shone brightly"...that's about as close to a compliment as we get here at the mtc! :)

I am working on translating my mormon.org profile into Spanish.  It's taking forever but I'll send you a link when im done!

we taught a grammar conept in class. I love teaching. I want to work here when I'm off the mission! oh Hermana Pister fainted in class, she is hypoglycemic.  I CAUGHT HER!  I'm the first person in the history of her life who has caught her. ha!

Ah! I have no time!  I wanted to tell about July 4th!  We got to watch a movie, 17 Miracles (so we wouldn't hear Carrie Underwood at the stadium of fire concert) and then eat ice cream and watch fireworks till 11 pm! no bed time! ha! exhilerating!  The fireworks were incredible. I am so grateful for this country.  We had a great district meeting moment of silence and wow. I'm proud to be an American.

ps I love my elders in my district.  They are my brothers.  Their spiritual maturity baffles me!  And wow out of time!  Gotta go!  Love all of you to the moon and back!  Keep writing! :) love love love

Hermana Moore.

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