Sunday, November 17, 2013
Letter From MTC-Week 1 Update
We got this letter from Ben on Thursday morning, his P-Day. It was so great to get a real letter from him with real information. This is his first week completed at the MTC. Enjoy!
So today is my first p-day. I have been sooooooo busy this last week, I honestly never knew there were so many hours in a day.
I love my Companion Elder Johnson (Paraguay Asunción mission). He is a strong spirit and it´s great to see him learning Spanish so quickly. I was not paired up with another elder who knew Spanish like the guy on the phone said. But that’s ok, it´s really fun to help him learn the language.
The American (English) Districts are split up into separate rooms from the Latinos (Spanish speaking) Districts. So I end up learning the most Spanish in the evenings while I talk with the Latinos. I have one roommate from Peru, Elder "G"; and one from Brazil. a little town outside of Sau Paulo. The one from Brazil is learning Spanish too but it will only take him two weeks.
I have 3 different teachers. Hermano Mirosnikov (born and raised in Argentina, son of Russian parents), Hermano Pederson (born and raised in Argentina, son of Danish Parents), and Hermano Christeche (born and raised in Argentina, Italian in descent). All of them have been really helpful with the language. Half of our district (5) is going to Uruguay, and half (6) are going to Paraguay Asunción.
My main goal for this last week was to learn all of the gospel terms I would need to effectively teach, since I already know how to conjugate in the present tense. Another goal was to only think in Spanish. That has been quite difficult, since no one else in my district knows how to speak any Spanish, other than how to introduce themselves and ask someone to be baptized.
When I go a long period of time were I don´t speak English, I have a really hard time forming basic thoughts in English. Since I can only speak in basic, non-compounded sentences in Spanish, I have been simplifying my thoughts to make them easier to translate. If someone asks me a question in English and it requires more than one sentence, I get completely tongue-tied.
¡The Latinos are amazing! They are all so nice and helpful when I am speaking to them. They always say to me in English that "You're so good at Espanish, Elder."
We have been teaching a fake investigator, His name is Alejandro. He´s 21, his family is going through a divorce, didn´t have a background in religion, and he "parties hard." We have been teaching him completely in Spanish. It´s so exciting to share our knowledge with him, even if he is a fake investigator.
I´m sorry I´m not sending any pictures, we are only allowed to take pictures every other Sunday, I don´t know why, but that’s the rule. So hopefully next week I should have some pictures for you.
We went to the temple today, it’s literally across the street from the CCM, and everything is on a beautiful gated campus.
Oh, and Elder Holland is going to be here. In the CCM, the same building as me, we might shake hands; he might sit in on our class. He is coming to meet with all of the local authorities, and then he is going to address all of us at a local stake center with 800 more missionaries from the Argentina Buenos Aires Mission. Words don´t even describe how excited I am!!!
It´s nice to hear about the family, I hope everyone is doing well and Justin isn´t terrorizing everyone. It´s so great to hear from you.
Just know I am doing well, I´m busy, I´m learning, and I´m feeling so closer to God than I ever have.
P.s. I haven’t received any physical letters from dear elder, I´m sure they´ll show up soon!
P.s. Don´t worry about me, I´m fine.
P.s. Forgive any spelling, the keyboards are different and there is no autocorrect.