Tuesday, December 29, 2009

1st Day Salt Lake City South Mission

Hi all

sorry i dont have alot of time because today has been crazy.

things i want to say... thank you so much for all your support in the MTC. it was great! i had so much fun this christmas we got to hear from elder anderson and elder perry.

christmas day we had a talent show and an elder sang a song about visa waiters and had a line "but have faith we wont be here as long as elder mender! 14 weeks i would die."  after that missionaries kept coming up to me and asking me if i was THE elder mender. haha im pretty much famous now!

but the good news i am out of the MTC and in the field!  i am in the salt lake city south mission in park city and i am... SPANISH SPEAKING!!! yeah its going to be an adventure. one of the missionaries i came up here with just today got his visa today so he leaves tomorrow.   things are crazy i am threesome with elder lopez and elder mierzejewski. (the latter is my trainer) they seem like great elders and i am excited to get to work. we have three lessons tonight and a wedding and a baptism tomorrow!! they say we dont find out here we just teach and baptize i am so excited to get to learn spanish and to get to work!!

i love you all. have  a great week hopefully a longer one next week!

love elder mender.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Just Another Day in Paradise

hey hey hey!

well as im sure most of you have figured out i am still at the mtc and unless my visa comes today i will probably be here until next year! crazy to think about... on thursday my whole district got their visas so yesterday i said goodbye to my second district.  That was really a sad day.

not a whole lot has happened that is exciting. i have learned a lot this past week about patiance and other things.   yesterday during my personal study i had an idea to have an fhe with all the missionaries that have been here 9 weeks or more. so i got a lesson together and told as many missionaries as i could about it.  it sounded like not a lot would be a ble to come so i was a little worried but about 30 missionaries came and we talked about what we can do to make these next few weeks some of the best rather than some of the saddest.  a lot of us have been really annoyed that we arent in Brazil  but i am hoping last night helped some of them. i know it helped me a lot to realize what an amazing chance the Lord has given me to study!

well not a lot else exciting... my new companion is elder perry and we do a lot of things with the new missionaries, that is really fun.  yesterday we spent about five hours listening to lessons in portuguese or working on door contacts with first week missionaries. it is really a fun experience.

i hope you all have a merry christmas! what an amazing time of the year this is! truly the lord has given us so much.  i am so grateful for the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ.  i know that he gives meaning to my life. i love you all so much.

love, elder mender

PS what else?  oh in a few weeks ill have the record for the mtc!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Merry Christmas from the MTC!!!

How blessed i am to be here this time of the year! what an amazing season this is.  I keep hearing from everyone that some of their favorite christmas memories were from the mission and i can see why.  i cant imagine being anywere else this week.

first i want to start with some news from last week!  so every sunday night they show movies a district favorite is the mountain of the lord. if you haven't seen it go see it now.  amazing and soooo funny.  of course because we are elders my district laughs at all the wrong times and the sisters get really mad at us.  But one part i laughed my head of at was when a reporter was talking to president woodruff asks the reporter if he is married. the reporter replies no and the prophet says, "marriage, a great institution, i highly recomend it."  just the way he said it i thought was pretty funny. but then again i have been at the mtc for 12 weeks....

speaking of that i am kind of known around here... elders i have never met before will be talking to me and say oh you're elder mender the 12 week missionary.  how are you still alive!  i asked one elder how he knew about me and he said, "oh our whole floor was talking about you and how your district got temp assignments but they forgot about you and left you here..."  so i guess missionaries just talk about me. way sad. hahaha

Good news about temp assignments i should know tomorrow where im going!!! i'll have my mom send out an email so you all can know as well.

Well we got to see the Christmas devotional that was just amazing! i hope everyone has seen it. if not log on to lds.org and watch it right when you get done reading this email! so wonderful.

so funny joke that might not be funny because like i said i have been in the mtc for a while (this place does things to you... some good, some bad) but our district was having this intense debate about cain and secret combinations and who the worst person to ever live was and how cain just lived a horrible life and never did anything good. and i read a verse that says, "and cain knew his wife and had kids." or something like that and i was like, "hey elders cain knew his wife at least he didnt marry any random woman. thats good right?"   we all busted up laughing i think i started crying. but yeah i enjoyed it. haha

so exciting news from last tuesday!!! this was crazy listen up everyone. so we are in the temple doing sealings and this woman gets up and says sorry i can do it, im dizzy gets up and goes to get a drink.  she comes back and tells us she is fine so we start again and she gets up and says, "sorry i have to sit down" but she heads to the door. right as she reaches the door she faints!!! and slams her head on the door and drops to the ground but an elder caught her just in time so she didnt hit her head again and i had to run and go get help it was just crazy!  and then an old guy next to me says, "thats the 9th fainter ive seen in the temple." he just said it so causually it made me laugh.  e muito interasante. nao e?

oh last wednesday we got to be TRC missionaries that the new missionaries see role play.  it was really fun. since we have been here so long we get to do all the fun stuff like volunteer in the TRC. last week we got to be investigators for english and portuguese missionaries.  i love this work.  yep its pretty much amazing.

last tuesday for the fireside was elder costa of the 70 from Brasil!! it was amazing.  i am so excited to get to my mission he told of his conversion and i hope to be able to have that kind of influence on just one person!  well more if i can but ill take one. haha

and this sunday we had the BYU mens choir come and it was just an amazing. the music and testimonies given were just amazing. one student talked about how christmas and music are intertwined because at christs birth angels must have sang and it was jsut a really pretty program.

well i guess ill finish by saying i have almost done an 1/8 of my mission!!! that is crazy to think about.  i am starting to wish it was a 3 year mission not a two year mission.  i mean i have only been in the mtc!!! haha

well i love you all i hope you enjoy this time of the year and take a minute to remember the true meaning of Christmas the birth Of Jesus Christ. Have a merrry christmas and look for those chances you have to serve (they are kinda limited here in the mtc.. :(  )

I love you all!
love, elder mender

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The New District

Hello all!!

well life is great at the MTC. we found out yesterday that starting tomorrow we will be in one big district with all the groups that have been here 9 weeks and we get to plan our own time. so it will be more like the field in that we dont have official class. it will be really nice because we have a lot of options for us. they have pretty much opened the MTC for us. we can volunteer as investigators in the TRC, we can spend as much time in the RC as we want.  we can go to any tutor whenever we want, and the coolest part we become mentors for the districts that are new. as a companionship we get 2 or 3 new companionships that we help with portuguese and learnign how to be a missionary. it is going to be a really unique experience.

so they told us that at the most we will only be here two weeks after our 9 week mark (im the only misisonary that has been here longer) so im not sure what they are going to do with me butim  hopeful that in two weeks ill either be in Brazil or some other mission til my visa comes.

funny story of the week:  i got a letter from my mom and i was reading it while following my comp and i was really focusing and out of my eye i see him turn the corner into the bathroom so i follow and i read a really funny part of the letter and i stop and start telling my comp (who is in the stall) about the story.  he says "ya....ok"  and half way through my comp comes walks in the door and says, "mender, what the heck are you doing?!"  im like what the freak!!! moral of the story i was telling some random elder about my moms letter why he was going to the bathroom. i busted up laughing so hard i couldnts stop laughing for about thirty minutes.  tears for sure came. i havent laughed that hard in a long time.

um... what else to tell you not a whole lot. i find i do the same thing every day... class, study, eat, sleep... i am very excited to get in the field and work with real people and bring them the Gospel of Christ.

oh on that note! josephine ward has gone to church, gone to her wednesday night book of mormon class that the missionaries hold and meets with the missionaries twice a week. she is keeping her commitments and very excited about baptism.  i cannot wait for that day!  just to see the change in her life how happy she is now and how her relationship with Christ is truly amazing. every time i talk to her i get that much more excited for the work. truly this work is amazing and the Lord is the master of it.  my wish is that all could have it in their lives so that they could recieve the millions of blessings that come from Gods true church.

well i love you all and i wish the best for you.  time is flying by!! i cant believe christmas is just a feww weeks away! i am so excited for this season i have heard that it will be one of my happiness memories in life and i can already see why.  what a great chance this is for us to remember our savior and redeemer Jesus Christ!  I wish you all the best.

Love elder mender

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Thanksgiving at the MTC


well to start off the week elder oaks came with his wife for the tuesday devotional and it was just amazing! he and his wife are so fun together he gave a great talk about how to be a better missionary and being an active missionary.  it was just delightful!

then wednesday night elder holmes got sick and he wanted to tough it out because we knew holland was coming thanksgiving morning but thursday morning he wasnt looking too hot and he went to the front desk and they put him into quarintine minutes before elder holland showed up!! so sad and because he went into isolation our whole district had to take tamiflu pills so we didnt spread whatever he had.

so elder holland came thanksgiving morning and that was a life changing experience. i was second row right in front of the pulpit it was amazing!! we as missionaries get into debates about "deep" doctrine and he answered all of the questions it was just amazing how on fire that man is when he speaks.

So friday night our district is brushing our teeth and our Zone leader says "friday nights suck" i asked "why" and he says "you know all those girls waiting for us are on dates right now"  and then elder elmer the quietest kid ever who when he speaks you listen because it is either deep or hilarious says, "my wife is on a date right now.." we all busted up laughing soo funny. maybe you had to be there but i think you get the idea.

so sunday night we have the chance to watch movies but elder deffense wasnt feeling too good so we decided to go  back and study (so he could take a nap ) but on the way some elders were caroling and i made him stop and we joined them. it was a lot of fun it is so pretty around here at night because they have put up a lot of christmas lights (kind of like the jsm) and it is most joyous at night. i am so excited for this christmas!   This is such a great time of the year! where we can focus on the birth of our savior Jesus Christ and give thanks for all he has done for us.

after singing we decided to go vist elder holmes in isolation because you can go up to the door that leads to their hallway. so we ran up there and it was really funny because they (they just stick all the sick kids in one place) have stacked up boxes in an archway and wrote "koritane population 19" then the scrathed out the 19 and put 20.  it is pretty funny. so we shouted to elder holmes through the door it was pretty fun. i felt so bad for him because they cant really do anything but sleep and skype into a class when class is going on.

so elder deffense has warts on his feet and we had to go out of the mtc to get them cut off and he is allergic to pain killers so they couldnt numb it and i got to watch him as they cut all 20 of his warts off and it was so funny but kinda sad to watch him tear up.  dont worry i did get a lot of really good pictures!!!  hahaha

oh they are starting up this new program since there are not a lot of missionaries in brazil (they are all stuck here) where brazilian teachers will shype with us during the week from the sao paulo mtc i am so excited for that it is going to be sucha  great experience!!

well i love you all so much have a great day and thanks so much for all your letters and support.

love elder mender.