Monday, November 28, 2011

Week Nine.

Hello everyone!

Guess what? I got my visa last week so I am on my way to Brazil on time! They gave me all of my travel plans. I leave Wednesday from the MTC at 8am. We flight out of Salt Lake to Detroit. Then from Detroit to Sao Paulo, then finally to Recife, and I won’t get there until 3pm on Thursday December 1. So I will be traveling for a day and a half. But luckily my and my companion travel the whole way together. And the last Elder in our district is traveling to Sao Paulo with us. So we will all have each other. I am super excited but very nervous at the same time. I am so ready to go and teach other people and share the gospel with them, but I am very nervous about speaking Portuguese. But I know the Lord will bless me as long as I put my whole heart into it.

We had the great opportunity to hear from two apostles this week! On Tuesday night Devotional we heard from Elder Christofferson and he spoke about things he wished he had done better on his mission. And then on thanksgiving we got to hear from Elder Nelson. He talked to us about the difference between thanksgiving and giving thanks. They were both amazing wonderful talks!

Thanksgiving was good here at the MTC, they really treated us well. And I was so grateful for all of the workers who did work here on thanksgiving. In the Morning we heard from Elder Nelson, as I had mentioned. We then had our Thanksgiving dinner for lunch at about 11am. There was turkey and stuffing and mashed potatoes and rolls (not grandma’s rolls, that’s the thing I missed the most) and even some pumpkin pie (which I didn’t eat because I don’t like pumpkin pie). But it was pretty good, for Thanksgiving cafeteria style. I was just so grateful for all the people working there. We then made our selves sack dinners to eat later in our residence halls. We had an opportunity to do a service project. We made humanitarian aid kits, kind of like first aid kits. We made big assembly lines. The MTC made 8,000 kits. At the end of the day we got to watch a movie! We watched 17 Miracles. It was a very good heart touching movie, I recommend you to see it. They even gave us all our own bags of popcorn. They treated us very well on thanksgiving. And then when we were walking home the main court yard of the MTC was lit up with Christmas lights! (They have been putting them up since about the time I got here). Each night they are on and they are such a pretty sight to see.

On Friday I had in-field orientation. We just went to a bunch of work shops all day. It was really good. They told us some ways that we can be better missionaries. And we practiced contacting and everything. It was great. We learned a lot.

Yesterday was Sunday. And during our Sacrament meeting our branch President always calls on at least two random missionaries to give a 5 minute talk in Portuguese. So every Sunday you have to come prepared with a talk. And this week it was my lucky turn. I talked about Enduring to the end (perseverar ate o fim). I went over the 5 minutes probably closer to 10. But everyone said that my talk was good. And the Branch Presidency’s wives said it is so incredible how we pick up the language so fast. I also sang again this week in Sacrament meeting. This time with my district and our twin district (the district who came in the same week that we did). So there were 7 of us. We sang a medley of "Child’s Prayer" and "He Sent His Son". We didn’t practice but twice, so it was okay. I still enjoyed it though.

I hope everyone is doing well. And the next time you will be hearing from me I will be in Brazil!


Sister Rebecca Nelson

Monday, November 21, 2011

Week Eight.

 Hello there everyone,

So guess what? I only have one more week of the MTC. Isn't that crazy? Time flies by so fast. I can't believe that an 1/8 of my mission is already done. I am pretty positive that our visas are coming this week. So hopefully we will get our travel plans soon. And then head out after Thanksgiving. We will see though.

This week I got to be a new missionary Host. When all the new missionaries come in every Wednesday they have a missionary who has been here awhile escort you around and get your room, books, ID, and take you to your classroom. There were a lot of sister missionary hosts so I only got to show two sisters around, but it was fun. They had twice the amount of missionaries come in this week, 700 new missionaries, they said we were at 105% capacity. So things are pretty crowded.

It also snowed this week for a day. It was snowing when we got out of class. It's funny now, I am getting used to the cold weather again. Some people complain and I'm like “It's really not that cold”. I've gotten used to the cold from being in Rexburg for three winters. But it will be a total weather change once I go to my mission. Everyone says it's really hot and I will get there as they are heading into their summer!

The extra Elder who was added to our district is now ready to leave. So starting Wednesday there will only be 3 of us in our district. Me, Sister Harris, and our last Elder who will be a solo. It will be pretty funny.

We have been teaching a lot this week as usual. And this week all of our investigators got “baptized”! Okay, so these are our teachers acting as investigators, but it was still pretty fun.

Yesterday in Sacrament Meeting all of the sisters in the zone (7 sisters) did a musical number, it was really good. One of the Elders helped us with it, and we sang “Nearer My God to Thee”, mixed with “For the Beauty of the Earth”. Our Zone is getting very small with everyone getting visas and leaving. There are 4 zones that only have 4 people in them. (a normal zone here has about 12 people). So our four districts put together make one normal size district. We had a new district come in this week and they only had 6 people.

I'm getting exciting to leave, but also very nervous at the same time. I am ready to start teaching real people. But I am scared about speaking the language. But they a new program on how they teach language here and they just started it this summer. Our teachers say we are a lot more ready to go then they were, and we know the language a ton better. So that's good to hear. I'm excited though.

Things with my ankle are looking good, I still have to wear my brace, but I am free to go. It's still not 100%. But it is workable.

I hope everyone is doing well. And HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

Sister Rebecca Nelson

Monday, November 14, 2011

Week Seven.

Hello There Everyone!

Time here in the MTC is flying by! I can't believe I only have about 2 weeks left. I still seems like I got here not that long ago, but yet it seems like I have been here forever. It is scary to think that I might/will be in Brazil in about 2 weeks! Thinks are looking up for visas, and I think I will be leaving here on time. Two more Elders got their visas this week from my district and are leaving tomorrow. They filled out their online visas exactly a week before the rest of us did. Our district would be down to 3 people (1 Elder and 2 Sisters), but we had another Elder join our district this week. He has been here for about 12 weeks, he is recovering from knee surgery, and we are his 4th district. So luckily our one remaining Elder has another Elder. So our district will be down to 4 people.

Updates on my ankle: My ankle is getting a TON better and it is truly a miracle, considering I couldn't walk on it. I am now walking around just fine, and even yesterday I took of my brace. I still have an ace bandage on it just in case, but they said I didn't need to wear it. I even got cleared too! They said that I could even play in gym now too, don't worry I will take things easy. It is just so amazing. I almost feel all better. It still hurts to rotate it some ways too far, but it is a lot better. And almost all the swelling is down.

Our lessons have been getting a lot better this week. We have just been able to go in there with a few notes on what we want to say and then we are able to talk. We are able to start thinking in Portuguese better and it is nice. Some weeks I feel like I haven't improved on the language that much, but this week I feel like I have. I'm really impressed with how I can get my thoughts across. But I really only know missionary lingo. When we are trying to speak everyday stuff, we don't know how to say much.

I have really discovered that I love singing. I have always kind of liked it, but it wasn't until I got here at the MTC that I realized how much I really did like it. Also because things are so quite in order for there to be noise we go around singing. I go to choir every week, and I really enjoy it. This coming Sunday the sisters in our zone are all going to sing a song for Sacrament. And one of the Sisters, who I think has an AMAZING voice, said she really liked how I sing. Singing just makes me happy now.

The weather here has also been nice. It's been a bit cold, but every day turns into a nice crisp, sunny, fall day. And it makes us so happy.

Well I hope all is well!


    Sister Rebecca Nelson

Monday, November 7, 2011

Week Six.

Hello everyone,

It has almost been 6 weeks since I have entered the MTC. Can you believe that? I can’t. Time just goes by so fast here.

Well some updates on my ankle... It is getting a lot better. About the fourth or fifth day I could definitely see improvements in my ability to walk and move around. It still hurts from time to time and is still a bit painful, but a lot better. Because it is a high ankle sprain though, it’s mainly a couple of the ligaments in my legs that hurt when I walk, I guess they tore and so when I walk on them they will hurt. I now will be meeting with the doctor every week, I meet with him later today. I now do physical therapy during gym time, which usually really helps. Except I get almost a new trainer every day and they never know what I can or can't do. So they other day one of the trainers tried having me stand on it and to toe raises and I fell to the floor because it was way to painful.

I'm actually thinking that I may be in the MTC for awhile because I have to be able to have a lot more mobility on my ankle and be able to walk at least 10 miles a day for me to be cleared to go to the field. My Elders tell me to stop worrying about that, and to just get better and that I will be able to go. They have been a lot of help. As I walk around the MTC campus EVERYONE asks me about my foot. I just have a brace on (kind of a big brace), but it's not even a boot. Everyone wants to know what happened and how I'm doing. And it was fine to hear from the first couple of people. But when at least 10 or more people want to have a conversation with me about what happened it gets a bit tiring. My Elders told me I need to come up with a better story. :) I also want to thank you for all of your prayers. There is no way that I would be healing as fast as I am if it weren't for your help and the help from the Lord.

My district is now down to 5 people. 2 sisters and only 3 elders. It is very strange sometimes. But we have been able to grow a lot closer. And we get a lot of one on one time in class too. Another new district came in this week that was pretty exciting. And guess what there are 3 new sisters who came in. That makes a total of 7 sisters in our zone. One of them is from Ecuador, and she is the sweetest person.

There are not a lot of people left in our district and we have scheduled times to teach investigators, so we have to teach all the time to fill up the schedule. We have to teach every time that we have class!!! It gets a bit crazy sometimes and we have no time to prepare. We know that's what we will be doing while we are on the mission but because we are still trying to learn the language it's hard.

I think my language skills this week have taken another step. I now feel comfortable when the investigators ask me something  I can usually respond back with an answer that they can mostly understand. Mine and Sis. Harris's teaching together has also been a lot better. We have always been pretty good. But when we have to make stuff on the spot we flow a lot better. A lot of our lessons this week didn't go as we planned. Our investigators will ask us questions and then we will end up teaching something totally different. We now get to play investigators to the other elders in our district! It is pretty fun.

Yesterday was fast Sunday. WE got to have a mission conference and hear from the mission presidency. We also had a district testimony meeting and the Spirit was strong. Well I am still loving the MTC. And I realized that I do not have much time left, it has flown by so fast.

Well I hope all is well with everyone.

Sister Rebecca Nelson