Monday, April 8, 2013

Hola Familia! Happy Conferencia General!

This week was awesome. It is so cool to be a missionary during general conference and listen to the head of the church talk about you.  I saw Tom Rowley in the choir and that was also really neat. Elder Holland and Elder Uchtdorf were my favorite talks and seemed to hit right what I needed to hear. I loved conference but I think one of the highlights of my weekend was being in a room with thousands of missionaries singing, "We'll bring the world his truth". It has always been my favorite primary song but its really neat singing the song in the MTC because they change the words. It goes "We have been born as Nephi of old to goodly parents who love the Lord. We have been taught and we understand that we must do as the Lord commands. We are as the army of Helaman, we have been taught in our youth and we are now the Lord's missionaries to bring the world his truth. We know his plan and we will prepare, increase our knowledge through study and prayer. Daily well learn for now we are called to take the gospel to all the world. We are as the army of Helaman, we have been taught in our youth and we are now the Lords missionaries to bring the world his truth. We have been saved for these latter days to build the kingdom in righteous ways. We hear the words our prophet declares, let each whose worthy go forth and share. We are as the army of Helaman, we have been taught in our youth, and we are now the Lords missionaries to bring the world his truth. I can't really describe what that sounds or feels like to sing that song with thousands of missionaries but the head of the meeting said "It seems like your voices are so much louder than your numbers. There must be angels helping you sing." I think that describes it pretty well.
These are my elders last night during Elder Balzers last night.
Today is P-day and I got to go to the temple again! It was pouring rain when we left but we didn't care. We walked to the temple in the pouring rain singing "There is sunshine in my soul today". I did an endowment session with my companions which was wonderful because I felt like I hadn't done one in so long. I ran into Heather Willis (I apologize for not remembering her new last name) and gave her a hug. I also saw some of Rinamay's family in our session. I talked to them in the celestial room for a few minutes. It is such a small world.  Elder Balzer from our district left to Colombia this morning. It was sad to see him go because it seems like he is already part of our family. I will miss his comments and insights because he is a convert and seems to understand missionary work differently than we do and understands how important our message is.
For devotionals this week we heard from Elder Ringwood and his wife (member of the 70) and last night we heard from Vocal Point which is a group of nine guys from BYU that sing occapella. They competed on a TV show not too long ago and I guess they did pretty well. They sang different hymns and shared their testimonies and experiences from their missions with us. My Spanish is continuing to come so quickly. Its crazy how well the gift of tongues works. Sometimes I will look at sentences once and remember them. My companions and I have memorized a scripture in Spanish everyday so far. They are always scriptures that we use in our lessons with our investigator. We get to teach a new investigator tonight and I am so excited. That is the best part of the week.
   These are statistics that I compiled to give you a feel for what life is like in the MTC everyday. The phrase, "Esta bien" (Meaning its all good, its okay, alright) is used about 130 times a day. We go up about 476 stairs a day (our classroom is on the fifth floor of the building and our residence is on the third floor.) It feels like we go up and down stairs all day long. I pass Elders or Hermanas praying about 8 times a day. I love to hear people praying in different languages and I love praying in Spanish. Our district brings up ties about 13 times a day. When you have to stare at each other all day ties get pretty interesting. My companions tell me I am going the wrong way about 5 times a day. I always think I know where I am going but I never seem to. In my defense all the buildings look exactly the same. I accidently talk to people in Spanish probably about 4 times a day. I always feel bad when I start talking to someone in the cafeteria like they know what I am saying because of the look of confusion on their faces. I'm sure they get that a lot though. I open my scriptures about 13 times a day and take around 40 pages of notes every day. But the greatest statistic of all is that the Spirit is with us all the time, 24 hours a day.
My companions and some hermana in our zone going to California that we love. Their names are Hermana Nnah and Hermana Ballard. We sing Hermana Nnah's name to that muppet song all the time. Hermana Nnah, do do do do do. Hermana Nnah, do do do do. lol
Whenever I meet an Elder or Hermana that knows someone or is writing someone in my mission they always tell me that it is "So poor and very dirty". All I can think is Heavenly Father you picked the right girl. I am so excited to go to Peru. I love and pray for the people there every day. Also I found out this week that my mission is in the process of getting split. I may not be serving in the Lima East mission, but we will see when I get there where the Lord needs me. My companions and I were sad to hear the announcement because we may not be in the same mission. I love my companions, they are so patient with me.   
Thank you for everyone that has sent me letters. I have been surprised so far by how many people have written me. I will work on writing more letters today. I feel bad because it takes so much longer for you to get my letters than for me to get yours but I will do my best to write as soon as I get them. I know the message that I am preparing to share is real. It is true.
Hope to hear from you soon!
Hermana Rhoten

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