Alrighty they recently changed the rules for the email thing, so I have an hour to write YAY! The MTC is still standing and I am doing pretty well, thanks for asking. :) I am about 3 weeks into learning Tahitian and I am speaking sentences on my own now, it's a flipping miracle and sometimes I impress myself. Let's be honest, I am having divine help over here. (Prayers work.)
My companions are so awesome and incredibly talented with impersonating different accents. I cannot really describe how hillarious it is when they take on the character of a Russian babushka or a middle-aged Irish woman. Soeur F has an uncanny ability to quote Nacho Libre with an impeccable Mexican accent and I've experienced abdominal pain on many an occasion.
VISA: No idea what the status is but apparently our mission president's wife has political connections so we're hoping she can pull the right strings to work the system and get us over there. Actually, there's a pretty good chance that all of our fears will be put to rest sometime this week if/when we receive our travel plans. One missionary just barely went to the French Embassy today so we're all really hoping that things work out for him as well as the rest of us!
Some Tahitian for you gorgeous people:
utuafare = family
Varua Maitai = Holy Ghost
maramarama = intelligence/light/enlightenment
na rea ra= ok
haapiiraa= school/class/lesson/anything related to learning basically
Iosepha Semita (Ee-o-tayfa Tem-eeta)= Joseph Smith
I know approximately 150 Tahitian words (I've studied about 250 but retention is tricky) and I feel confident about teaching lessons/talking in French so it's probably a good thing that I'm out here in the mission field or else I would have an adoring fan club following me around. JE BLAGE! ("I joke!") They are both really pretty languages, I'm honestly not stressed about learning them because it's so worth the effort. Next I plan on learning how to play the ukulele and dance Tahitian.
I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter! My companion, Soeur Johnson was the piano accompanist for the Easter morning devotional and was FANTASTIC and our speaker was Gerald Causse- a General Authority, member of the Quorum of the Seventy! Easter evening devotional: Sheri Dew. After that: we watched "Recognizing the Spirit" by Elder David A. Bednar. It was such a fabulous day.
I'm doing my best to reply to everyone's letters, time is a tricky thing over here. I sincerely love and appreciate the mail I receive, I cannot thank you enough. Missionary work is hard work and I really appreciate feeling like I'm not missing out too much on everyone else's life!
I really feel as though I'm actually learning 3 languages here in the MTC: French, Tahitian, and the Holy Ghost. For those who are reading this and are not Mormon, the Holy Ghost is the third member of the Godhead. The Godhead consists of: God, His Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost. God and Jesus Christ have (glorified) bodies, but the Holy Ghost is a spirit that can reside with us if we are living worthily. I have been slowly getting better at recognizing when the Spirit is directing my thoughts in our lessons, which is the whole point of missionary work. I am not serving a mission to teach people, I'm serving a mission to love people and share a message of the restored gospel and the Holy Ghost will be the teacher who can speak to their heart. It's kind of an interesting and amazing concept, please go to www.mormon.org or www.lds.org to learn more!
Missionary life: You feel guilty when you read an English Book of Mormon instead of a mission language Book of Mormon, you watch Mormon Messages like they're your favorite show, you go to bed at 1030 and you feel totally exhausted, and you pray ALL THE TIME (tous les temps!)! It really is so different from anything else I have ever done and I couldn't have had the same experience anywhere else. Thank you so much Mom and Dad for supporting me in every way possible, I will never stop feeling appreciative for your love. Rest of the family: same thing except for the money part. <3
I am going to upload pictures next time because I can't find my card reader flash drive! Faaitoito! ("Stay strong!")
MTC Mailbox #184
2005 N. 900 E.
Provo, UT 84604