Hello family & friends! First order of business - my departure date is actually September 5th, so I imagine I'll get any final mail or DearElders on the 4th.
So, it feels like a LIFE TIME has happened since Alisha dropped me off at the curb. We essentially run on a 16-hour day schedule, where every hour is accounted for. My companion is Sister Sims, from Riverton, Utah. We are paired with another companionship in our district - Sister Weaver (Rexburg, Idaho) and Sister Fish (Mesa, Arizona). We are all headed to the West Indies! Two of the elders in our district are also coming to the West Indies; the other elders are going to Las Vegas West. I love my district, we have definitely grown together in the past seven days. I wish the elders going to Vegas were coming with us to the West Indies! They are very kind and super cool.
Everyone who entered the MTC after August 1st is now on the new MTC curriculum, which focuses on teaching. The old curriculum had missionaries teaching roughly 5 times before they left the MTC; on the new curriculum, each companionship gets to teach about 22 times. My two teachers, Brother Welsh and Brother Gonzalez, play investigators for us to teach towards the end of class. Brother Welsh plays Peter, a man in his mid-20's whom he met on his mission, and Brother Gonzalez plays Beto, an 18-year-old whose parents have joined the church. So far, we have taught Peter twice (once as a class, once as a companionship) and Beto once. We also participate in Zone Teaching - essentially, we pair up with the other two districts in our zone and we switch off between teaching and playing the investigator. When playing the investigator, we choose someone from our life we know fairly well and respond to the missionaries as we think they would. We've also had the opportunity to do TRC (Teaching Resource Center), where real investigators or recent converts come in and we talk with them. Sadly, our investigator, Lawanna, did not show up. We had met on the first night though, so I am excited to see her whenever that comes.
I think one of the happiest things so far about the MTC has been running into people I know! I have already seen Hermanas Wagner, Weagel, Walther, Dunn, Dezzeo, Bowns, St. Pierre, Doyle, Scott, in addition to Cestra Huber. I love my friends so much, and it is always so joyful to see them. They are doing well.
It is so hard to think of experiences that have stuck out, for it seems that EVERYTHING has stuck out. After every meal, it seems like a new day. Oftentimes, I find myself thinking in afternoon class, "Wait, was I exercising just this morning? Or was that yesterday?" It feels like I've learned more here in the past seven days than I've learned in six months.
Family, thank you so much for your support in prepping me for the MTC + getting me here. I have spoken to many people who do not have the support of their families in this great endeavor, or only have some support. Thank you thank you thank you.
Ahhhhh I only have two minutes left to write! What to say?? We are going to the temple this afternoon! We also have MTC Devotional tonight by one of the General Authorities - I think a member of the 12. We won't find out until 10 minutes beforehand. JACOB, good luck at BYU! Don't forget to pick up the TV from my old roommate Rachel. Look her up on Facebook. I'm thinking about you.
Lastly, I can only write letters on P-day, so if you've written me, you'll get your response shortly! I promiseeeee.