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Oooooohhhhh We’re Halfway There!

I’m now on my 3rd week at the MTC! Halfway through! Yay!

This week has been full of twists and turns, but still pretty good.

 

Patricia, our TRC investigator has been doing well. She agreed to pray and read the scriptures daily in our last lesson! She was pretty good about keeping her commitment to pray last time so hopefully she’ll keep this one! At the end of our lesson with her yesterday, she hugged us! We’re getting closer to her! Hermana Read, Hermana Nieves, and I could not keep the smiles off our faces when we walked out from that lesson, we just felt so good about it!

Ann M. Dibbs, Thomas S. Monson’s daughter, came and talked to all the women in the MTC on Sunday. It was pretty neat! For her talk she spoke about her dad and listed out his attributes that she’s noticed throughout her life. At the end of her talk, she had us cross out the “he is” in every trait that she listed and had us write “I will be…” instead, like this:

“I will observe and remember”

“I will be a loyal friend”

“I will encourage others”

…etc…

Tomorrow I’ve been assigned to be a host for a new missionary and help her get all the things she needs and get to her class. Hopefully I don’t mess up and get lost! I still don’t feel like I know my way around this place!

In the email I sent last week, I said there was a rumor going around that Elder Holland was going to talk to us that night in Devotional. Unfortunately, that ended up just being a rumor. But we still had a great devotional! Lynn G. Robbins came to speak to us about Christlike attributes. He challenged each of us to read Chapter 6 of Preach My Gospel and pick a Christlike attribute to work on. I chose to work on the attribute of hope.

On Friday night, Hermano Clement had our class sit in a circle as a district and read all of Ether 12 together. If you ever need a spiritual pick me up, I highly recommend reading this chapter!

If you ever need a laugh, the Elders in our district just showed us one of the best LDS ads ever made! Watch it here. It’s so awkward, we all just died laughing. But maybe we’re just losing our senses of humor in el CCM πŸ˜‰

I can’t let my non member friends see that video without also linking to a more beautiful and heartfelt video about family too. Here’s a very sweet video about fatherhood.

Another funny thing that happened this week! Hermana Nieves has had a sore throat all week, so she’s been carrying around a cup of salt to gargle every once in a while. The Elders were asking why she waws carrying the salt around and we told them that we were using it to keep evil spirits away at night! The funny thing is that some of them didn’t catch our sarcasm at first and were so concerned! Poor guys!

Hermana Nieves was just full of good quotes this week , so I’ll just end with a couple of my favorites:

“Whenever you feel far away from God, just ask yourself, who moved?”

“See the light in others and treat them as if that’s all you see.”

That’s about all I have for this week! I love all of you and I hope life is going well for all of you! Thank you to everyone who sent me DearElders this week! I love getting letters from you all!

Hasta Luego!

Hermana Wilsted

 

 

New Companionship

Hey Everyone!

There have been some big changes this week! The first one: I’ve been put into a tri-panionship with Hermana Read and Hermana Nieves. Hermana Hurd has decided to switch to an English speaking mission so unfortunately that means she’s changed districts. We still see her around a lot, and she’s been doing a lot better since the switch. Being in a tri-panionship is kind of tough, but I’m getting used to it.

Another change is that our “investigator” that I talked about last week is now one of our teachers! “Marcos” is actually Hermano Clement and I love him! He’s a really good teacher and so patient and kind, just like Hermano Peery! We (Hermana Nieves, Hermana Read, and I) have two new investigators this week. One is just Hermano Peery acting like someone else (Luis), the other is a lady named Patricia, and we’re really not sure if she’s a real investigator or Β not! Patricia is from Uruguay and she told us a ton about Argentine food! It was really fun talking to her. She was trying to learn English so we all just kind of spoke Spanglish throughout the entire meeting.

Every Sunday and Tuesday night, the MTC has big devotionals. This past Sunday Vai Sikahima came to talk to us about the power of our influence in other people’s lives, it was so great! He’s lead a really neat life, and it made me feel super excited to get out to Argentina and start helping people!

We also had a devotional last Tuesday, and guess who gave it? Elder and Sister Bednar! It was so cool being in the same room as an apostle*! They spoke about how to get more out of General Conference** talks.

We’ll have another devotional tonight and some people have been speculating that Elder Holland is giving it! In choir on Sunday the director is having us sing “Be Still My Soul” for tonight and he mentioned that it was a lot of the apostles’ favorite hymns and was very particular about how we needed to make sure we sang this well for devotional tonight.Then, at devotional sunday night, Vai mentioned that either Elder Bednar or Elder Holland spoke to us last week. We’re assuming he knows the speaking schedule. If Elder Holland comes to speak to us tonight I will die. He’s one of my favorite apostles!!! If I had favorites I mean… *ahem*

Also on Sunday night, we watched The Joseph Smith movie, and it was so good! I’ve seen it before but I felt the spirit so strong throughout the movie! It really makes me grateful for the early Saints of the church, and especially Joseph Smith, who went through so much to keep the gospel alive. This gospel has brought so much joy to my life!

Before I end this email, I’d like to thank everyone that have sent me Dear Elders this week! They really help uplift me throughout the week. If any of you would like to send me a DearElder, they are totally free! You just go to the DearElder website and write me a letter. Here’s my info:

Hermana Wilsted

NOV 15 ARG-POS

2005 N 900 E Unit 15

Provo, UT 84602

Thank you to anyone who send me DearElders! I love them!

For anyone that isn’t a member of the LDS church, you can always check out Mormon.org or LDS.org if you have any questions. You can also ask me and I’ll try to answer you by next Tuesday! Here’s a few definitions of some things I spoke about in my email today:

*Apostle – Like in Christ’s ministry, we believe apostles and prophets have been called today. We have a prophet at the head of the church today and 12 apostles. They are the leaders of our church.

**General ConferenceΒ – General conference happens twice a year. It’s a weekend long event where the members of our church listen to inspired talks given by the prophets apostles, and other leaders in the church. We believe the words from these talks, especially from the 12 apostles and the prophet of our church, to be inspired from our Heavenly Father. I feel the spirit so strongly listening to these wonderful men, and I am grateful for the guidance they give us.

Well I think that’s all for this week! I love you all and miss you so much! Keep praying for me!

Hasta Luego!

Hermana Wilsted

P.S. – We watched a video from Elder Holland called “Testimony of the Book of Mormon” and it is so good! It’s about 4 minutes like and I really recommend it! If you’d like to watch it, here’s a link!

 

It’s Christmas in October

… Well not exactly, but it feels like it! My first P-Day has been AWESOME so far! We started the day at 6:15 and got ready to walk over to the Provo temple*. I know I always joke about how ugly that temple is, but it is BEAUTIFUL on the inside! Also, it has a cafeteria, which was super awesome. The food was so great, way better than anything I’ve had at the MTC cafeteria so far! Not that I’ve been starving or anything πŸ™‚ The temple trip was super fun, I’m so glad we get the chance to go each week before we leave. I wish there was a temple in our mission!

My companion is Hermana Hurd, and she is so sweet! She’s from Mantua, Utah. We are two completely different people but we’re getting along pretty well! We really even each other out in a lot of ways. She’s been having a hard time with homesickness since we’ve gotten here, so if you guys wanted to include Hermana Hurd in your prayers I think that would be great!

The other girls I am rooming with are Hermana Nieves, Hermana Read, Hermana Goates, and Hermana Gardenier. Hermana Goates and Hermana Gardenier are in the intermediate Spanish class and they have been so helpful and supportive of the rest of us! They’re seriously like the room moms. Yesterday, they left uplifting notes on everyone’s pillows and it was just the sweetest thing ever. I don’t know how anyone can be so good but they really are! Hermana Nieves and Hermana Read are in the beginning class with Hermana Hurd and I, and they’re also going to Argentina Posadas so I might end up being with companions with one of them someday! Hermana Nieves is super fun and chill, she also completed a year of school before going on a mission like I did. Hermana Read is actually a college junior, and she is really good at Spanish! Not fluent, but she knows a lot more than us. She probably should be in the intermediate class but she never called for them to put her in so she’s stuck with us πŸ˜‰

Our room decided that every Friday we would have a little devotional for just the six of us! This last week Hermana Gardenier and Hermana Goates were in charge and one of their moms sent us cake! It was so awesome! Hermana Hurd and I are in charge of this next one πŸ™‚

The Elders in our district are so funny! There’s 7 of them, three of them are in a tri-panionship**. I keep forgetting all of them are just out of High School, it feels weird being older than them! I used to look up to the Elders in our ward like they were way older than me, it’s weird having them as my peers! It’s weird, but still so fun! Anyways, I haven’t gotten to know all of them super well yet, but I can say that they’re all great. When it’s time to study, they work hard, when it’s time to talk and have fun, they play hard! The district*** wouldn’t be nearly as fun without them.

So… Spanish… In my setting apart blessing it promised that I’d become so fluent in Spanish that I’d sound like a native, and I’ve gotta say, I can really feel the spirit helping me learn! I can see improvements in my Spanish every day, and slowly but surely I am able to say and understand more each day! I’m not saying I’m gonna be fluent in six weeks, but I think I’ll be able to hold a normal conversation by then without saying “Como se dice…” (How do you say…) every minute!Β The Gift of Tongues is real!

We’re teaching a fake investigator every day en espanol. His name is Marcos, or at least that’s the name we know him by. Our first day of teaching him was super scary and really kind of bad, but after that we got a lot better! Hermana Hurd and I are really starting to get the hang of planning lessons! This Sunday we’ve been asked to teach Relief Society, and we already finished the basics of our lesson. Now we just have to worry about making it fun!

Our Spanish teacher is Hermano Peery, and he doesn’t speak one wordΒ of English to us. I like him a lot! He’s super patient and never acts annoyed when some of us don’t understand what the heck he’s trying to tell us (which is basically half the time). He’s also super funny! Sometimes when we make grammar mistakes he goes “Apostasia” (apostasy), or when the computer isn’t working he goes “El Diablo” (the devil). He also quotes Nacho Libre a lot. We /think/ he tells us more jokes in Spanish because he laughs a lot and we just kind of laugh with him even though we have no idea what he just said to us. πŸ˜‰

At the end of our language class yesterday I was pretty close to tears. I was asking Hermano Peery how I can get more out of reading the scriptures in Spanish because it feels like even though I get what’s going on, it’s not really helping me learn the scriptures in Spanish. He tried to give me tips, but like I said, he only speaks in Spanish to us and I literally had no idea what he was telling me. After asking him to repeat himself like 5 times I finally just nodded and acted like I understood. Then Hermana Read gave me a note in English telling me what he was trying to tell me, so thankfully I got an answer. Anyway, at the end of language class Hermano Peery had us read Alma 26:37 in the Book of Mormon and it made me cry! I felt so much comfort from that verse, I am so glad Hermano Peery had us read it. Here’s what it says:

37 Now my brethren, we see that God is mindful of every people, whatsoever land they may be in; yea, he numbereth his people, and his bowels of mercy are over all the earth. Now this is my joy, and my great thanksgiving; yea, and I will give thanks unto my God forever. Amen.

I am so grateful to have Hermano Peery for our teacher. I can really feel the spirit in our classroom thanks to him and this awesome district. I can’t wait to see what the next 5 weeks here at the MTC bring!

Before I end this super duper long email, I wanted to remind you all that even though I can only send and read emails one day a week, I can read DearElder messages every day while at the MTC! If any of you would like to send me a message through DearElder, I’d LOVE to hear from you! Here’s the address you’ll need:

NOV 15 ARG-POS

2005 N 900 E Unit 15

Provo, UT 84602

Called to Serve!

Hey Everyone!

I know it’s been a while, but I’ve got some exciting news! I’m going on a mission!!

I have been called to serve in the Argentina Posadas Mission, and I report to the MTC on October 5th! That’s one week from now ohmigoodness!!! I’m half excited, half scared out of my mind. That’s always a fun mix!

Anyways, since my next post will be a copy of my first weekly mission email, I thought it’d be good to write down some of my thoughts and feelings before someone else (that someone else being my older sister, Shiloh) takes care of the blog while I’m gone.

So… where do I begin? I guess I’ll just go ahead and puke up all of my fears. Start with the bad, end with the good. That sounds like a good way to go!

Fears (Dun-dun-duuuuun)

  1. I’m going to miss my mom SO MUCH. Seriously, so so SO much! She has been my best friend throughout my entire life. I made it through a year of college just fine, but that was with my siblings nearby and being able to call and text her everyday. I am so scared that I’m going to break down when the reality of not being able to hear her voice more than twice a year hits me.
  2. This sister who recently returned from the Argentina Posadas mission said there weren’t a lot of areas where bikes are used, which is good because riding bikes actually scares me. I took one really nasty fall down a rock hill while riding a bike once, and that was enough for me to never want to do it again. What if I end up in a similar accident on my mission?
  3. Argentina eats a lot of meat, and a lot of carbs. Meat and carbs, that’s about it. I can work fruit into my diet in the mornings and dinner time, but I’ve already gained enough weight this summer as it is, am I going to come back 50 pounds heavier?
  4. What if I get mugged!? Seriously, I’m scared to death that I’m gonna get stabbed or something, and even if I don’t get hurt, I would be heart-broken if my mission bag got stolen because my mission scriptures, patriarchal blessing, family pictures, and special quote book might be inside it! I know they’re all just things, but the scriptures are sentimental because they’re specifically to be used during my mission. The patriarchal blessing is just a copy and can be replaced, but it’s just so special to me. The family pictures can be replaced because I have them on USB but I don’t know if there will be a place to print my pictures or a place to buy a little mini photo book, so that would suck to lose it. And the quote book. Oh my goodness, the quote book. My mom and I spent hours working on that cute little book. I searched the internet for an entire week looking for the most uplifting quotes and poems I could find to take with me. It’s more than just the book, it’s already got so many memories attached to it. I would be so sad if I lost that book.
  5. What if none of my companions like me? It sounds crazy, but it’s my biggest fear. I have always had a hard time making friends, party because I moved states every two years of my life, and partly because I have a terrible self confidence. I tend to be kind of a doormat. I avoid confrontation like the plague, and somehow I guess that translates to me not being able to connect with people outside of my family very well. Don’t get me wrong, I made a couple friends at BYU, but they’re going to be a year from graduating and maybe even MARRIED when I get back. I’ll be left in the dust and I’ll basically have to start all over again friend-wise. I desperately want to come out of my mission with at least one good friend. Seriously, some girls go on their missions dreaming of finding their future husbands (I am not judging anyone who does want this), not me. I just want a friend.

Hopes & Wishes

  1. I want to come back from my mission with a few friends that I can come back to BYU with as a sophomore. I would be so happy if I could finally have a strong group of friends that I can go out and do random fun stuff just on the spry with.
  2. I’d love to come back fluent enough in Spanish to be able to get a few credit-hours for it. I’ve been tossing around the idea of maybe one day becoming a Spanish teacher, but I guess we’ll just have to see what the future brings.
  3. If I could lose weight on my mission, that would be great. I’m just going to be honest, I gained thirty pounds since I’ve come home from college. I haven’t been moving much, and my family has been eating out a lot. I am not feeling very confident about my looks right now. I’m hoping that if I eat well during the meals I have control over, the pounds will begin to drop. My mission is mostly a walking mission, some areas have bikes, most don’t. There aren’t any cars, and buses are used sparingly, so I should be getting plenty of exercise! Here’s hoping for a new me, spiritually and physically!
  4. I never really got a confirmation one way or the other if a mission was right for me. I finally just decided to go because it was what I wanted to do and I’ve never gotten any feelings that it wasn’t right for me. If I could come back from my mission feeling like it really was something that I was meant to do, whether it be because there was someone I helped touch, something special that I learned, or a friend made, I’d like to come back knowing that this was the path God wanted me to take, and not just something that I could have taken or left without any consequence.
  5. I want to come back from my mission a completely new person, for the better of course! Now don’t get me wrong! I am totally worthy to go and I’m not struggling with my faith at all, but my biggest reason for wanting to go is because I want the spiritual growth that comes with serving a mission.

When I sent in my papers, I was feeling like I had hit a spiritual plateau. Since I began preparing for my mission however, I definitely have felt more in tune with the spirit. I also feel that the Facebook group, Many are called…. but few are sisters has helped a lot in preparing for my mission by being able to hear other girls’ mission stories. I am SO grateful that I found it before I left! If you’re a girl preparing to go on a mission, thinking about serving, or a returned missionary, I HIGHLY suggest you request to join the page. It has seriously been one of the best tools in helping me prepare!

Anyway, that’s my list of hopes and fears, dreams and nightmares. If you’re reading this, I would really appreciate any prayers sent my way! πŸ™‚

That’s all I have to say for now,

See you all in 18 months!!!

Featured image: “Seeking the Spirit” by Greg Olsen