Thursday, November 29, 2012

Week 7-MTC Thanksgiving!

Hola y Aloha!
So first of all, I have a favor to ask. There is a really awesome and spiritually strong yet terribly quiet elder in our zone named elder brown. He is a native American who just doesn't really talk much but he has kinda started talking to hermana Dunn and I and I found out that he doesn't really get any mail. I know Chelsea told me to let her know if anyone needed mail so there you go. And if anyone else wants to write him I know he would appreciate it! He is going to the Florida Fort lauderdale (sp?) mission. His address is
Elder Warren Gary Brown
MTC Mailbox #358
F-FTL 0115
2005N 900E
Provo, Ut 84604-1793

Just in case you were wondering, Speaking Espanol toda dia cada dia did not exactly go as planned. We did do a ton better though! We are making more goals each day so Ill let you know how that goes...:) This week seems to be so filled! Thanksgiving was AMAZING! We got up early that day so we could get breakfast and get into line as soon as possible to see Elder Holland. We ended up getting about 6 or 7 rows back but it was perfect. If you think he is powerful on the screen, try being that close to him in a room full of missionaries as he bears his testimony! So cool! He also told us that he adopted us into his family for the day:). He brought his family with him and had a few of his grandchildren bear their testimonies and sing. He said they were going to be part of the program whether they wanted to or not because they don't practice free agency in their family:) His oldest granddaughter is 20 and is going to be leaving on a mission soon. She said that she started thinking about a mission a little before the announcement was made and called up her grandpa (Elder Holland) to see what he thought about it. He told her to start filling out her papers then saying that it just takes longer for some people to get them filled out:) She was pretty excited when the age change was announced:). Anyways, Elder Hollands talk was so powerful! He talked about and bore his testimony about different things that he was grateful for. He talked about how he is so grateful to be born in the last dispensation. How he doesn't believe anyone truly understands what a great blessing this is. He said that all through the scriptures, it talks about how God showed our day to prophets. Prophet in those days had to know that they were going to lose (like Nephi for instance), but God lifted their spirits by showing them our day and saying "buck up! Cause there is a group who is going to win. They will be in the MTC on Thanksgiving Day in 2012!" He talked about how he doesn't like it when missionaries say they will finish their mission and then go back to "real life." He said in his intense powerful voice, "This is Real Life! This is as real as life will ever be! Nothing is more important than this work!" He talked about how we are here to save the human soul and how that is what Christ spent his whole life doing and nothing else. He also bore his testimony of Joseph Smith and it was so powerful! He then read D&C 133:44-53 with us and talked about how we need to serve for Jesus Christ more than anything just so He won't have to be in the "wine vat" alone. It was such a powerful talk!

After that we did went and ate "Thanksgiving Dinner" in the cafeteria. Let just say that I was super jealous of all the food you described in your letter mom. We actually had real turkey which was good but that was pretty much the best part. I honestly didn't care really though. I feel like I was spiritually fed:). After dinner we did an awesome humanitarian project where we made hundreds of thousands of health and education kits for kids in Africa! After that we got to watch a musical fireside type thing that was more laid back than most firesides and I got to hear Hermana Jones fiddle! She was so good and definitely had the crowd! That night they gave us all popcorn and we watched 17 Miracles! It was a pretty amazing day. They kept us busy enough that we didn't have too much time to get homesick. I did miss ya'll though!

The rest of the week was pretty standard. We did lose hermanas Laughlin and Kofe on Friday and then yesturday morning Hermanas Jones y Loveless took off. I'm gonna miss them so much but I am so excited for them and am so grateful we had to switch rooms so that I could meet them and get to know them. They really taught me so much! Something really silly that happened the other day that I thought you would enjoy: I folded my quilt in the middle of the night...while I was sleeping! I kinda remember doing it but I thought it was a dream then later on that night I woke up freezing cold cause my blanket was folded beside me! Hermana Loveless sleeps right below me and she is a super light sleeper and the bed is super squeaky. She said that she thought I was trying to move my entire bed around I was so loud!

This week I have been learning so much more about Charity and Listening with my heart and the spirit. The scriptures tell us that we need to pray for charity "with all the energy of your heart" so I decided that I needed to try that cause I had never really done that before. I cannot tell you how amazing it is that the Lord hears and answers prayers like that! I have been so much happier and teaching has been so much easier! This gospel is so amazing! It really is such an easier way to live. That doesn't mean that there are no trials, in fact, you may have more trials than you would without it, but it is easier because we have hope. We have faith that Jesus Christ will support us in our trials and never desert us. We are able to repent of our sins and feel that guilt lifted off our shoulders. We know that death is not the end and that as we come unto Christ and as he shows us our weaknesses and each day we strive to improve and be more like Him, we can live with Him and our families after this life. Psalms 16 is a great chapter that talks about how we have hope through Christ. The Savior also says to come unto him and he will lift our burdens and give us rest. How amazing is that?!

Sooooo happy to hear that Alexa is doing better! I am still praying hard but its good to hear that things are going in the right direction. I was also excited to hear about Tyson. I don't think I said anything in my last letter so I just want him to know that I am soooooo proud of him! You had better get a video and make sure your camera doesn't run out of tape or battery in the middle:). What I meant by cliff hanger letters was that I never really heard the results of the surgery till the last letter. Chelsea sent all your facebook updates and everything. I do get your letters on the same paper actually. Dearelder is printed on really long paper that has successive letters one right after the other...if that makes sense. I don't have my exact address yet so I guess your best bet is to call the mission home. I'll let you know when I do. A coordinating sister is just kinda like a relief society president except we don't really have a ward relief society and there are only 4 sisters in our branch. So I just go to a bunch of meetings with the disctrict leaders and zone leaders (which are the 3 elders in my district) and tell them all how great the sisters are doing. Hermano Frey said that you accepted his facebook request. He can be on facebook cause he is not a missionary. He got home from his mission in July I think and he is now going to school at BYU and teaching at the MTC. I think that would be a really awesome job! Apparently they get paid well too. Hermana Crane says she has no idea if she's related to Kyle or not. She says she only knows the Crane side of her family back to her great grandmother. Whether you use the camping picture or not for the Christmas cards you should send me a copy of it along with the family picture that has been up on the wall, and also with any other pics of thanksgiving etc:). As for a Christmas package, I really have no idea. The only thing that I really wish I had right now would be a purse/book bag and then some neosporn and band aids, and maybe some good church music and a small children's songbook. IDK though, send me a bunch of love:).

I love you all sooo much and I hope you are all doing amazing!
Les Amo!
Hermana Shayla Rowley
Elder Brown

Waiting for Elder Holland

hermanas Laughlin and Kofe

Humanitarian project

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