Wednesday, August 19, 2009

One Week Down!

Sent: Wednesday, August 19, 2009 8:10 AM

Hola Familia!

I survived my first week here at the MTC! It's amazing how quickly this place starts to feel like home. The spirit is so strong and everyone here is so friendly and helpful! I can't complain about the food either. They keep us very full as we generally eat every four or five hours. I have the feeling i'm going to gain some weight here! Anyways save this address because this will be my email address for my whole mission. Our p-day is on wednesdays for my district here at the MTC, so you can expect an email every week on wednesdays.

Thank you for your letters! Getting letters is seriously like Christmas day here! Kristine, all the guys in my room loved the package you sent me, and they all want to hear "the good stuff" everytime I get a letter! We've had some fun with the stuff, and we have that expanding Alligator growing in the bathtub on our floor ;). Also the air freshner has been put to good use as staying in a room with 3 other guys gets pretty stinky! I haven't taken a whole lot of pictures but i'm sure you'll be seeing some pretty soon!

Anyways I think I already talked about the guys in my room in my last letter, but I'm pretty sure there was some wrong information! My companion is Elder Hinton from Hurricane, Utah. He just graduated high school this year, and he's an awesome basketball player. He actually reminds me of Jordan Fisher in a lot of ways! Also in our room is Elder McClurg from New Jersey (our district leader), and his companion Elder Day from Ogden, Utah. We all get along great, which keeps us from getting to sleep by 10:30 because we are always up talking about things.

We have probably the best teacher at the whole MTC. His name is Hermano Cragun, and he just got back from his mission in Texas 6 weeks ago! It is so obvious to all of us how much he loves missionary work and he has really brought "bromancia" or so he calls it, to our district. We love singing the Himnos in class.

Our first or second day here we were taught how to bear our testimonies and pray in Espanol. We've gotten lots of practice in and i'm pretty confident doing it, but I have still got A LOT to learn. Me and my companion have started reading "El Libro de Mormon" in our companionship study to help us with pronunciation and it's suprising how many words we can pick up on! I am definately going to need the gift of tongues to learn this language! We have our first teaching apointment this Saturday, which thankfully is in English. (By the way dad, I found out what TRC is... Teaching Resource Center) We do have to contact people in Spanish prior to teaching the first lesson however. It's pretty ridiculous how nerve racking it is to approach people to have a conversation in a language i dont' know yet! But I've learned there is nothing to be afraid of as we are all here on the same team!

Our schedule was pretty crazy the first week through Sunday, but we are on a schedule now so things should get a lot better! We get an hour of gym time each day which has really made me realize how out of shape I am! I usually play basketball or run/bike/lift. Most of our time is spent in Class. Sundays are pretty laid back which is a nice break from our day to day routines! P-days are nice for lots of reasons, but more than anything i'm excited to go to the temple today with my district!

Last night we had our first Devotional which was by Spencer V Jones of the second quorom of the seventy. Apparently he is going to be speaking at the Oquirrh Mountain temple dedication this Sunday, so you can see who he is! He gave an awesome talk about teaching by the spirit! One thing he talked about was "looking up and listening for what comes down". Although this was a little different, it reminded me of what Bishop Oviatt used to always tell us about taking time to ponder to become more receptive to the spirit! I know this will help me a lot as a missionary as my schedule is so busy that a lot of times we dont' have time to think! He also said, "If you don't teach by the Spirit, you're not teaching the way God intended you to teach." I challenge all of you to take time to think about spiritual things so that you may have the Spirit with you more fully throughout each day!

WE finally met our Branch President last night as he was out of town last week when we got here as well as on Sunday. His name is President Nelson and he seems like an amazing man! I can't wait to learn more from him! Our sacrament meetings are pretty nerve racking because we are all asked to prepare a talk (in spanish) and they randomly call 2 elders from our branch of about 50 to speak for 3-5 min.

Well i'm about out of time! I just got on to set up my account and use my 30 min to send an email while I wait for my laundry to be done in the washing machine! Thank you for your love and prayers! I love and miss you guys and I hope all is going well back home! Happy birthday to Kevin and Keri and happy back to school week!

Love, Elder Wheelhouse

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