Saturday, August 24, 2013

Tory's first P (Preparation) Day

Mi familia y amigos,

Hola! Today is my first P day since getting here to the MTC! This has been the most amazing past week and a half of my life. It has been extremely hard, a lot harder than I thought that it would be, but it has been very good. I think how I will do this is I will just pretty much write one email to you mom and then you can just post it up on the blog if that works for you. Then I will write other people if there is something I need to say to them specifically. Things have been going pretty well!! First things first I need that package I asked you to send which has that under armor shirt along with everyone's emails and mailing addresses. Other than that I have everything I need and it is all going good! Spanish is a lot harder than I thought it was to get a hang of but I have learned so much in just the week I have been here it is great! I have been truly blessed so far! So from the Wednesday I got here until Sunday we had a different schedule than the regular one that we have now. All of the extra time we had was taken up by meetings and extra classes. It was very stressful which is saying something considering I am no stranger to tons of class haha. Every one of my classes is in Spanish and I had to start teaching a practice investigator on my second day here, and get this, the entire lesson and discussion was in SPANISH!!! It was ridiculous! I had little to no idea what he was saying nor did I have any idea what to say. And the worst part is every time I get stuck my mind reverts back to German... stupid language! I have caught myself switching from Spanish to German in mid sentence a couple times. It is so annoying! But it is alright it is slowly fading and a missionary going to Germany tried to talk to me and all I could think of was Spanish words so yeah... it seems like every time I need to talk in one language my mind thinks of the wrong one! Haha I guess I English is up next!! Any way my classes are going well, it was way stressful to not understand a single word but now I can say that I understand probably about 80% of the words my teachers say and the rest I just pull from context haha. I am way happy that I can understand that much after just a week, but it was definitely a hard fought battle, and I definitely had a LOT of help from the Lord. One really cool thing is that both Elders Valdez and Stout from West Point are in my district! Which means we all have class together every day and everything. Elder Stout is also one of my roommates so I am with him all the time basically. He is also our district leader and he does a way good job. Everyone in my district but myself and one other person has taken at least 2 years of Spanish in high school or junior high, and so they all had at least a basic understanding of the language when they came in here, which has helped them a lot. Then you have me with my 4 years of German... needless to say I am the slowest one in class to pick it up! But they have been really good at helping me out and teaching me words and what not.
My companion's name is Elder Borchert. He is from Washington State and he went to BYU-I for a year before his mission. He is a really good guy and is a really good companion. We work really well together and he teaches me Spanish words all the time. We like to have fun but we both study hard and have had really good lessons with our practice investigators so far! I would say I probably have the best district I could ask for, it has been so great working with them all! I have felt the spirit so much every single day here. I have gotten discouraged by the language every now and then but I know if I just keep working at it I will be blessed with the gift on tongues and soon be able to speak it as much as I need to!

I can honestly say that I have felt the power and help from all of your prayers in the short time I have been here in the MTC. I can also feel the power of the prayers from all the members of the church who pray for the missionaries every day. Because today was Pday we got a chance to go through the temple. It was so great and I really love that building. I feel so refreshed and ready to go every time I leave a session there. It is such a blessing to go there once a week as a missionary here!

Other than the stuff I mentioned before, we have had two devotionals, one on Sunday and one on Tuesday. They were both really good and I have learned so much from them. They were both on missionary work (of course), and they both had a lot of power in their speaking. They were truly men of god. The one on Sunday was by Vai Sikahima (im not sure if that is spelled right haha), he played on the National Championship BYU team and now works for NBC as an announcer and olympics reporter. They other was by President Maynes of the Presidency of the Seventy. We have to have our devotionals in the BYU basketball stadium because there are so many missionaries here now haha. It is crazy how many of us there are! It is way cool to be with so many enthusiastic missionaries preparing to go out into the field and bring people to the Church of the Lord!

I am so blessed to have such a great family and so many great friends out there praying for me and sending me so much love and support. I only had a short time to email so for now this is all I am going to send. I still read every email I get though so please everyone continue to send them even if I don't write back one week!I love all of you so much and am so grateful for this chance I have to be a missionary of the Lord and serve the people of Argentina. I am so grateful for this MTC and the chance I have to learn the language a bit and the Gospel in preparation to fulfill this sacred calling. I know the Church is true and the Lord lives and is heading this great work today. I have felt the power of the Holy Spirit and can testify of his power to do all things if only you ask in faith. Keep up the prayers on my behalf, especially to help me learn Spanish! I love you all so much and look forward to hearing from and writing you all again next week. Remember to choose the right and endure to the end, it really is that simple!

P.S. The food here is actually not bad, but that may just be because I am comparing it to West Point food haha. Also, I have some photos but I guess I have to buy a card reader in order to attach them, so I will send them next week. Love you!


Elder Zollinger