Sunday, March 3, 2013
Hillary's 2nd MTC letter
I first want to thank my family for the e-mails, they mean so much to me and almost made cry. And thank you to Sister Olivia Baeza for the sweet letter last week. It was just the encouragement and advice that I needed. So thanks :) Speaking of letters, I'll have you all know that she was the only one to write to me this week. And everyone in my district (9 other people) get multiple letters everyday. I promise them that my family and friends love me, but they don't believe me. So send me some letters y'all! I'll write you BACK. But please write to my mission address, which you can find on the blog.
I forgot to mention a few other friends I've seen since being here - Sister Brianna Swenson from Lincoln, CA. She's Mikaela's (Dana's wife) best friend from back home! I actually saw her the first day I got here and have seen her many times since. She's so cool. And Dad, yes I've seen Sister Mikologik (sp?) EVERYDAY! Our classrooms are right next to each other so I do see her all the time. She's great! And finally, I've seen two friends from Bozeman here! Sister Brynn Foster and Elder Hayden Croft. It seriously is SO exciting to see friends here! Like I said, such a comfort and happiness comes over you! LOVE IT!
Okay so the main story this week involves a TRC (Teaching Resource Center) appointment. These appointments bring in every-day volunteers, who can be members acting like non-members or ACTUAL non-members. You usually never find out their persona, even after you teach them. Well, Sister Mitchell and I got assigned to a Luann Anderson. She was an older, retired teacher who was very knowledgeable about history and stuff. It was a great lesson! I was a little scared because she was so forward, but she asked most of the questions, which is VERY helpful. When investigators do the asking, it helps out so much. Anyways, I found out during the lesson that she was originally from Glendale, but then I quickly put that away in the back of my mind. Everything seemed to be going well, and so at the end, Sister Mitchell offered a prayer to close. The Spirit was there throughout the whole lesson, but it must have hit Luann hard in that prayer because when Sister Mitchell finished, Luann was crying! She told us that she wasn't supposed to break character, but that she wanted to tell us that we did SUCH a good job! She told us that we were so organized and precise. She had been a volunteer for many years and said that some missionaries are all over the place in their teaching. She kept praising us and we both started to BAWL. I mean, CRY HARD. And I know why - when someone gives you such good feedback on something that makes you so nervous... IT'S SO AMAZING. Those were happy tears indeed. Bother Sister Mitchell and I thanked her for her kindness and support - it meant SO much. Luann also said she felt connected to us because her son served in Denver South, where Sister Mitchell is from (Aurora specifically too!). And Luann told me that she actually taught school in the Travis School District a long time ago! So crazy.
BUT GET THIS - So when we were wrapping up, I asked if she knew any other Andersons from down south. She asked why and I said "Well, my mom was born in Glendale and her parents come from that area too. Do you know Marthalene Anderson?" She immediately grabbed my arm and said "You. Are. Kidding. Me. I grew up with her! How is she related to you?" I said "She's my NANA!" She couldn't believe it. I COULDN'T BELIEVE IT. Luann told me that she grew up singing with Nana and her sisters, and that Nephi (Great-grandpa Anderson) gave her her patriarchal blessing. HOW CRAZY IS THIS. So I had to ask "Well, I know that the Livingstons hailed from there too. Do you know any of them?" She said "Well, yes of course. I had a crush on Keith in high school." Hahahaha so funny. (Keith is my grandpa everyone). It was nuts. I knew right then and there that God put us together. We were meant to practice with Luann. She was an amazing lady and it's an experience I will NEVER forget. (By the way Mom, her maiden name is Thorne. Luann Thorne. Ask Nana about her!)
Well, this week was spiritual as ever. Thank you Dad, for the advice and scripture references. I'll be sure to look them up. Elder Ballard came to the MTC on Tuesday night for the devotional, I sang in the choir! We sang "Consider the Lillies". It was beautiful! But I was so tired through out it. I did take some notes though! One thing I gained was how much of a miracle it is that we missionaries are out here. We don't get paid, there's no job incentive. We do this because we love the Lord and love God's children. I want people to be happy, eternally happy, and I know that this can ONLY happen through the gospel of Jesus Christ. We must follow Him and be obedient in order to truly find that happiness.
I love you all! I feel your prayers. They make me stronger. I LEAVE THIS WEDNESDAY. So crazy. I'll be in the mission home by Wednesday night! I'm so nervous/anxious, but excited too! This is where I'm meant to be, and I feel that everyday.