Buna Family and Friends!!!(:
Oh my goodness it is so surreal to actually be here at the MTC. It has been so incredible, tiring, and different, but all in a good way(:
I have a great companion whose name is Sora Padgett. She is 22, from Portland Oregon (Dad she talks about it all the time - it must have been a awesome place to serve your mission) and she truly has a deep desire to learn the language. Romanian is ROUGH. However, I can testify that the gift of tongues is REAL and it WORKS if you have faith. I can say a prayer, bear my testimony, and give a short lesson...so its more than I knew a week ago. haha(: I've gotten pretty good at being able to understand what people are saying, its just harder for me to actually speak it due to all of the accents, dashes, and "pretty principles.My companion however is extremely good at speaking the language. She studied Russian before she came, and since Romanian is very close to Russian, it comes natural to her. Its been a huge lesson of humility this week for me because every time I think I say a word right like "iubestje" she tells me the right way to say it hahaha.
So although the language has been rough, its been totally okay because the Spirit is SO strong here and my district is AWESOME. There are 3 Elders in my district, and me and Sora Padgett. Its kinda nice having just us 5 as a district because that means the teacher is more focused on us and we go faster/slower with the lessons. There is another district with 6 other Sisters going to Romania and Moldova, and they are all ROCKSTARS. Our branch with President Willis (super awesome) consists of all the romanians and then all of the missionaries going to the Rome and Milan Italy missions. After our first meeting as a branch, I was called to be a Sister-Training-Leader over the Zone, so basically I'm in charge of reporting how each and every one of the sisters are doing in our branch - italian and romanian. Super cool!
Janice Kapp Perry also came on Sunday for the devotional, and she was an incredible speaker. She spoke about the power and Spirit that music can bring. It totally reminded me of the fireside that the Goldens helped with a few years/months ago, and how they said that for some people, music is key to softening hearts. I know that is true!! Music is something that invites the Spirit SO much. We always sing (or at least try to) hymns in Romanian before we start a lesson, and it is so cool to see the change in countenance and light in everyone's faces. It really helps set the tone for the mission, and for the lesson.
So yesterday at the Tuesday night devotional, we were all sitting there getting super excited to see who would come and speak to us. Apparently last week Elder Holland came to speak (Yes I was SUPER sad that I missed him by less than 24 hours..) so we weren't expecting who came next. Then...D. Todd Christofferson walks in the room. HOW COOL RIGHT?? We all had no idea! Him and his wife gave incredible talks, and talked a lot about Elder Perry. However, Elder Christofferson said something that truly touched my heart. He talked a lot about quitting, feeling discouraged, not getting along with a companion, or not teaching with the Spirit. He gave the answer to these questions and feelings of inadequacy by answering with this statement, "Get outside yourself. Focus on others.and SERVE."
How cool right? He is absolutely 100% correct. The Savior spent all of His time teaching, serving, and loving others - we can at least TRY to do the same.
Well I sure love you guys! Thank you so so much for all of the letters and emails! They are like GOLD here in the MTC.
Have an incredible week!