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Salem Oregon Mission - Spanish Speaking


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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Arrival to Mexico MTC


Holy smokes I miss you Mommy! Okay just to start off the keyboard is in Spanish so my grammar is going to be totally off so I apologize in advance! It’s only been a week???? I feel like I have been here for three! But it’s getting better and better!  So I don’t know if you noticed but I was bawling standing in the security line... I was a wreck... I was like what the heck am I doing...buttttt once I got to the gate there were a ton of sisters and we were all hugging and it made me feel so much better! So we had a layover in Dallas and there were like 20 of us sisters there and we just hung out!

Once we got the Mexico airport we waited for about an hour and half for everyone to arrive!  My group is the BIGGEST group that has arrived in one day since the Mexico MTC opened! 85 of us arrived on October 29th! We had orientations all day Wednesday and then they let us go to our houses at like 9 to unpack!  So there are casas and apartments here and I live in a casa! There are twenty of us in a casa and four in a room!

Sooo, my companion is Hermana Phelps!  We are verryyy different!  We were definitely just raised very differently so that was a struggle for me the first couple days!  But we had a meeting with President Pratt and he said, “forget yourself”!  “I know you’re all thinking about home right now and its time to stop”!  Sooo I decided I needed to be more Christ like!  We didn’t like argue or anything but we didn’t click!  So I prayed that I could forget myself and work this out!  And it has been great now!  We are so very different but we have been able to work it out and we just laugh at each other’s weirdness!  

In our room is Hermana Jenkins and so¨´Oto!  Oh I forgot to say Hermana Phelps is from Enterprise Utah so she was raised in a very small town! Hermana Kenkins is from Wyoming and is a great hard worker!  Herman So Oto is Samoan from San Diego!  Us four are always together because we are in the same district!  Me and Hermana So Oto are veryyy similar!!! I’m sooo glad that she is here!  It’s like I have a piece of home with me :) because she is like so many of my friends!  We laugh a lottt together and its great!  Us four get along really well and I’m sooo grateful to have great people to work with!

So our district is also veryyyy different!  We have SIX Hermanas and 2 Elders! It’s so crazy!  It’s been interesting to see how it all works out, in our district the Hermana’s are much stronger than the Elders.  The Elders haven’t figured out how to work yet.  Our carbon monoxide alarm has gone off in the middle of the night two different time so you can imagine twenty Hermanas evacuating a house because we all think we are going to die haha

Okay so Wednesday night I was feeling pretty shaky like what am I doing!  But two Hermana’s came in and gave us hugs and said don’t worry it’s hard today and the next couple days but it gets better!  And gave us hugs!  And then come to find out one of them is Malu’s cousin so it made my night that they took the time to come talk to us! 

Thursday was just orientations all day! It was a long dayyy! That one day felt like a whole week! But then after that every day just got better! Our teacher right now is Hermano Palma! He is great, he is 21 and about 4 feet eleven inches at most! haha He’s hilarious! He returned from his mission in Mexico in March!

So, I always thought we would have a few hours of Spanish class a day and that’s how we would learn...FALSE THEY JUST NEVER SPEAK ENGLISH! haha It’s great!  It’s helping me learn so much!  There have been a lot of tears in our class of frustration (there’s a lot of estrogen) but the frustration hasn’t gotten the best of me!  I’ve been the most advance in Spanish...WHAT??  Haha ya its a joke because I can hardly even speak but I’m improving so much!  

So, Friday was just classes all day (what a normal day is) the time is going by a lot faster now!  We had fast Sunday on Sunday so we started our fast on Saturday at noon!  It was great!!   The first time I’ve ever fasted for 24 hours…but it was soo amazing!  I dont know if I’ve already said this but the spirit is soooo strong in the CCM!! (MTCC in Spanish) like it’s everywhere and I love it!  I can’t describe it but it just makes me so happy!  So since we started our fast at noon on Saturday we didn’t have anything the rest of the day so we sat in our class room from 12 to 9:30 :)  That was a long day!  But I learned SO much!

SUNDAY! SUNDAY WAS THE BEST DAY!  First we had Relief Society and it was about same sex marriage and we practiced how we will approach that in the field!  Next we had sacrament meeting!! ahh soo great!!  

So, there are 24 of us in our zone, so that’s our branch! 10 sisters and the rest Elders!  The meeting was in Spanish and they asked us to have our testimony prepared in Spanish!  The meeting was going and I felt super prompted to bear my testimony.. in Spanish??? haha so I stood up and bore my testimony!  I’m not sure if I said anything right...but the spirit was sooo strong it was amazing!

Next, we had a meeting with one of the presidency.. I can’t remember his name its Spanish!   And he talked about making it to the temple and keeping the law of chastity and it was great!  He made each of us say we are going to get married in the temple haha!  I can’t remember what day it was but we had a devotional with the director of the MTC!  Brother Cates!   He is early thirties I would say from Orem!  He and his family live on campus!  They have three boys about the age of Will, Emmitt, and Jack!  He talked to us about staying on target!  Why am I here?  Not to think about home but to focus on the target! Inviting others to Christ! 

Yesss we already have an investigator!  His name is Erik Campos!  Our first lesson with him was Friday!  And yes all the lessons are in Spanish.  He speaks no English.  We invited him to baptism on Monday!  We have had 5 lessons with him!  He said yes to baptism!   It’s so great to teach!  I love being led by the Spirit!  The sad thing is…he’s going to become our teacher…we are not supposed to know that but I found that out...but it totally feels like a real investigator!  

They push us so hard here and I love it!  Oh, before I forget, Mom! Thank you soo much for the random notes, they have made me happy :)   The food is surprisingly good!   I felt sick all of Wednesday and Thursday so I didn’t eat much then but its good!  There’s a lot of meat so I mostly stick to the salad bar!   Buttt! They have a Nutella bar :)) I’m going to get so fat hahah.

I packed probably too much... I don’t know, I’ve used everything though!  It’s just going to be interesting because I have about 20 pounds of books I have to take to Oregon!  

Last night me and Hermana Phelps were called to be the Hermana zone leaders.  So we are in charge of the sisters in our zone!  I’m excited for that.  I am probably leaving out so much haha.   I’m just so excited to write home!  I have learned how to pray in Spanish.  I have the Objective memorized in Spanish (first page in PMG).  If you are going to serve a mission, memorize it!! We repeat it a good 20 times a day!  I am working on memorizing the first vision is Spanish now!

Tuesday we had a devotional from Elder Miron he is in the Quorum of the Seventy and his message was to lock your hearts on the gospel. The spirit is soo strong here.  I am LOVING the CCM!!   A quote I liked from this week is "I have learned not to put question marks but to use exclamation points when calls are issued through inspired channels of priesthood government."   That’s from Elder Russell M. Nelson.

We have time again later today so that is when I will send you pictures!  We are only allowed to take pictures on p day so I have hardly any.

My testimony has grown sooo much in just a week!  Have a great week!   I love you all!

Hermana Gifford

Hermana West and I on the way from the airport to MTC
It's official!!!!! i will tell you..some people call the MTC Auschwitz south....hahaha i only felt that the first two days though!
​Hermana Phelps and I are companions!
Our lovely room!
​Me and Hermana Phelps at the entrance!

​This is some of our zone playing volleyball. We play volleyball most days for exercise. Most of the Hermanas played volleyball in high school so I am like the girly girl.. a lot of people have told me i am like Regina if any of you have seen Mean girls... yes i know its a bad thing haha.
Hermana Tonga and I (one of the sisters that came to say hello the first night)
​My ROOMIES! me, hermana so´oto, hermana phelps and hermana Jenkins. They will be going to New Jersey.
​Hermana So´Oto! Let me tell you a little about her... She is 25 and has been engaged twice! She was engaged in April and TWO weeks before the wedding she didnt feel right so she prayed about it and her answer to her prayer was that she needs to serve a mission! Its so crazy! she is like my big sister here :) We have become super close and we have tried to figure out how we can become sister in laws but we thats not going to work haha...Anyway she is greatttt!
​It is so beautiful here! the hill looks dry but its super green on campus

​Our district! from the left Hermana Phelps (Oregon) Hermana Christensen from Mesa (going to Nevada) Hermana Jenkins (going to New Jersey) Hermana Johnson (Oregon) my wonderful self, Hermana So´too (New Jersey), Elder Vincent (New Jersey) and Elder Wilks (Honduras). Elder Vincent was supposed to have a different companion but he didn´t show up haha

​Me, Hermana Johnson and Phelps. The three missionaries that will be going to oregon salem!  Hermana Johnson is hilarious I hope I have her as a companion one day!

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