Well I survived my first week here at the MTC. The first few days were really hard. I forgot what it was like to go to bed so early. And no music, movies, books, girls... what was I doing here? (oh and no super smash bros with Riker) But it has gotten a lot better. Well back to day one. My companion is Elder Sanderson. He is 24 years old, he graduated from Penn State. He wrestled in college, which is why he is 24. He is an amazing artist, and has sold a few paintings for money $$$$. And he is Cael Sanderson's little brother. So yeah, pretty much I got the best companion ever. We have a whole room just to ourselves which is really nice. There are 4 other elders in our district. Elder Jacklin from AF, Elder Rosenvall from southern utah somewhere, Elder Sullivan from Highland, and elder Esplin from . We are all going to the Alpine German speaking mission. We are also part of this pilot program, where they are trying out a new way of teaching language and stuff. So for like the first 40 minutes our teacher only talked in german, which wasn't too hard on me, but a few of the guys had never taken german before, so they were so lost. Then she spoke a little bit of english and explained what exactly was going on. But this program is crazy. Thursday, day 2 here at the MTC, and we had to teach a "investigator" ( who is really just some actor, but he is really good and it feels totally real) totally in german for 30 minutes. Luckily my companion and I both speak quite a lot of german, so we were able to communicate, but it was way hard to teach gospel things in german. I don't know how the other guys managed. Okay, actually I do. Its called the spirit. We have all decided that they designed this pilot program to force you to learn how to teach by the spirit, because there is no other way that 2 guys with no german experience could teach anything in german, unless its through the spirit.
So thursday was interesting. Friday we had to teach an that investigator again. Day 3, and we had two lessons totally auf deutsch. This place is amazing by the way. I didn't feel like it of friday, but I am really loving the MTC. But back to my week. Saturday our zone did practice street contacting, once again totally in german. You and your companion are either missionaries or random people, and the ones that are missionaries try to spark some conversation with the random people and talk about the church. Once again, this is a very hard thing to do, considering that we still haven't learned any german. But that is the way this pilot program works. We have a little vocab book with gospel lessons and sentences and vocab that might be used in that lesson, and then our teacher talks to us in german. That is how we are expected to learn german. And by using a computer program called TALL, which just has german people saying words and you try and say them and record your voice so you can hear how you are doing. Its really helpful.
Sunday was amazing. I love sundays here. We had a great lesson about recognizing the spirit, and then we had sacrament meeting totally in german, and then choir and a fireside. The fireside was awesome. Some head guy here at the MTC had recent converts come up and he asked them questions so that we could learn what an investigator had to feel in order to be converted. It was great and I took lots of notes. Monday was another busy day. We taught our investigator again, and we had gospel classes and TALL lab and personal study and companionship study and all of that good stuff.
Tuesday was the best day here by far. We had study and class in the morning like always, but after lunch we went to the TRC, or Teaching resource center, where we practiced our door approaches with 4 different investigators in german. It went well. Oh random german story. So we were teaching our investigator on the first day, and i was trying to bear my testimony. I said "Ich weiss, dass Jesus Christus hat fur unserer Sünde..." which is I know that Jesus christ has for our sins..." and I couldn't remember how to say died, so I said "getotet." The investigator looked at me really weird, and i didn't understand why. Then he explained to me that I just said that jesus killed someone instead of died. I used getotet instead of gestorben. I blame Mr Sigafus and his Finger des Totes.
Well back to tuesday, tuesday night was the devotional, and Kevin Pearson of the seventy spoke. It was probably the best talk I have ever heard. I have never heard a talk like it. He was almost yelling, telling us that we had to be perfectly obedient in order to gain faith necessary to be good missionaries. Faith is developed through righteousness, and that is why its so important for missionaries to be 100% percent obedient. He said a lot of other cool stuff, and everyone was so fired up. My companion and I wrote a few quotes from his talk and taped them to our wall.
Overall I'm loving it here. My testimony has grown like crazy. I'm learning tons of german, and I getting alot of experience putting the two together. Elder Liddle is in my zone, so I see him everyday. Elder Porter has the same lunch and gym schedule as me, so I see alot of him too. I've also seen Elder Dowd, Elder Burdett, Elder Sorensen, Elder Townsend, Elder Byers. Yeah its pretty much a reunion in here.
Well I love all of you guys very much. Thanks riker and sidney for the letters, and mom thanks for the little inspirational notes in all of my shirts. They really help me out. Well my time is almost up, but feel free to write me letters. Our branch president says we can write letters at night, so i have a few minutes every night to write a little bit and then I can tell you guys more about what I'm doing. Love you all