missionary melanizzle

missionary melanizzle

Thursday, January 15, 2015

MTC Week 4 "Two Year Mark"

Note from Melanie on another letter this week:  Also my address is FEB 16 CZE-SLVK. Not FEB 17th. Every time I get a letter they always circle and cross out 17 and write 16. They just recently changed the color of their correcting pen to RED. If you could repost and tell everyone to change that, it would be phenomenal. That way the MTC mailroom won't light all my mail on fire. 

When my district all realized we are almost halfway through our MTC training, an Elder shouted out "IT'S OUR 2 YEAR MARK"   uhhhh...so our ice cream eating celebration on Friday is now called the '2 year mark'

WELL if you are reading this hoping to receive some type of inspiration or spiritual thoughts, you will not get a lot of that in this email. NOT SAYING the spirit turned off this week but I really remember some fun times in the last week!

Well, nevadí. I will start with a spiritual story. The MTC presidency has changed! The Nally's were wonderful presidents but now their 3 years of service are done and everyone is so happy they were here when the large boom of missionaries were here. Their second to last devotional the choir (which I have been a part of since I got here) sang "A Childs Prayer". The Nallys have a ton of grandchildren. So some of them came in and were all sorts of cute! They sang the first verse, all the sisters sang the second verse -as if telling them how to pray and the power of prayer, then we all sang together. The mother instincts inside of me released a few waterworks. Which is only embarrassing because every devotional is recorded and sometimes broadcast to the other MTC's around the world. Oh well. It was beautiful!

This last Tuesday Elder Russell M. Nelson came to speak to us with his wife and a man from the Quorum of the Seventies, David Evans I think his name is. They were alllll GLORIOUS speakers. I know the Holy Ghost is real because I had a hard day Tuesday and their words were exactly what I needed to hear. --This church is sooo true---But we all sang "Joseph Smith's First Prayer"---HELLO FAVORITE SONG! We sang a version of it that was so powerful I felt my inside burn with love for the Restoration of the church. I have really grown a testimony through music. Ever since I entered the MTC I feel like I have sang better than I have in the past and I have internalized each word of the song to then bare testimony as I sing it.

So every Thursday night we have these things called TRC. It is when we teach an RM (returned missionary) from the Czech Republic about various topics ranging from Revelation to prayer of receiving answers by reading the Kniha Mormonova (Book of Mormon). It was way fun to do last week. I challenged an RM to pray in the mornings. He laughed and said okay! Then I asked him to say the closing prayer. He was like "haha okay" (he served in 2006-2008) We are actually recorded and our teachers listen in and hear how we are communicating. I love it! So I am excited about tonight. 

So now for funzies of the MTC. My companions OH! Cectpa Barch is in Macedonia now! The night before she left, her and I probably got a total of 2-3 hours of sleep. She had to report to the travel office at 3 am in order to make all her flights and whatnot. It was a rough day but I wasn't too tired! 
Okay anyways now I am in a trio with 2 Bulgarian Sisters. Cectpa Olden and Cectpa Taylor. I have been rooming with and hanging out with them this whole time, so not much change really went down. I love them so much! During gym time we have been working on some records. There are a few records of Elders and Sisters doing various fitness things. There is nothing for wall sits yet. That is the one I am working on. So far I am at 3 minutes. I'll let you know when I set a high record that can't beat my thunder legged wall sits. Sister Olsen set the sister's record for the mile. We have a track that when ran around 10 times, is 1 mile. Sister Taylor and I cheered her on as she ran around a ton. On the last lap we raced her which pushed her a lot because she was slowing down. So as we ran around that last lap I was yelling at her and hollering and sprinting my heart out! SHE GOT 6:31!!! yeahhh baby! Sister Taylor now is a gangster with sit ups. The record now is 50. That is cake for Sister Taylor. She said in 4th grade she did 400 of those babies! So we are soon to be pretty famous :)

A little bit ago my mom sent me some funny #mormonproblems. So I have been compiling a list of #MTCproblems. Připravedný? (Ready?)
#not knowing what you are eating but consuming anyways
#6:30 AM line for showers
#cold/influenza spreading like a wildfire in the desert
#"PAGE 33!"
#getting too aggressive playing volleyball
#no snooze buttons allowed
#new rule of "no throwing snowballs"
#MTC gas...it all smells the same and it is everywhere
#our obyvatel (residence) constantly smells like righteous missionary FEET
#long lines for BYU Creamery ice cream
#candy/junkfood in every room
#needing Comp. Inventory (its like a pow wow for companionships to talk about strengths and weaknesses and to discuss companionship problems) after playing a wild game of 4 square---SERIOUSLY some Elders get way too worked up about 4 square...not even 3rd graders care that much!
#making our own music since we aren't allowed to listen to it here
#hiding things in our scarves
#taking photos of random missionaries with cameras with really nice zooms (they are hilarious. It is surprising how often ransom missionaries look like professional models!)

Okay well that is all I can really say. I love you all. When you pray for missionaries or specifically for me, trust me, the Spirit listens and sends your love my way. There are bad times and doubting thoughts but I know because of my purpose and because of your prayers I am lifted up. Thank you for all of the love!

-Sestra Hale

P.S. I am going to start leaving little messages in English/Czech. Don't bother translating it because A) it might not be all the way correct and B) don't trust google translate. Our dictionaries for Czech are even filled with mistakes.

P.S.S. tak, milují ste moc. mám čtřy weeks left. jsem vdečná za toto experience a ya moje učitelkí. oni jsou trpělivost a miluící k Sestro Hale. Vím že evangelium Ježíše Krista je právdiva. Miluji se modlit v český! děkuji MOC za vaše modlitbo a laska. Okay. Mám jít. Budu mluvít k jste dalši week!

 Me with Cecpta Barch and 2 Brazil Visa waiters we have been rooming with.

   Friends from EAC!!!!!!! they are in the same district but serving different areas. Small world!

I love my district. My můžem ( my men!)

  My starší!!!! my elders!!!!

   All the solo missionaries in our zone (learning a language alone, or learning without a companion)

a letter to family

excerpts from handwritten letters to us:
Thank you for your letters and for the encouragement. The first few days/the entire transition was tough but really after that first Sunday I have found to call this place home - for the time being - I have made more and more friends, better relationships with my teachers and missionaries in my zone. We talk to each other about our questions of the doctrine or about funny stories.  It's like we are a really close family! No one is left out in our zone. I am even tempted to belly bump this one Elder who is a sunshine ray and a teddy bear physique and super funny.  I once told him that and he said "I know! I almost shoved Sister Barch over a chair like I would my sister! We are like a family here."  I love this. There is so much support coming from all angles.
I love getting your letters.  Some of the Staršís here are jealous I get mail all the time. I am totally okay with this. because soon I will not be able to receive or send mail as much. It will mostly be over e-mail.
I haven't said anything too bad (in mixing up words in the language). when I was teaching I meant to say "you are wonderful" but I said "you are atonement" instead.

Friday, January 9, 2015

MTC Week 3 Svaty Krava (Holy Cow)

This last week went by fast and slow at the same time. 

I shall start with the best part of the week. Fast Sunday on this last Sunday. The entire MTC fasted! So the spirit was strong with us. We had a little different schedule with all together MTC conference. Sister Oscarson (General YW Prez.) spoke to us. It is always so nice to be reminded of my purpose whenever someone speaks to us newbie missionaries. They all make sure to tell us to be humble because the Spirit is the one teaching. These missions are completely for the Lord and about His work. 

The next exciting thing was this last Saturday evening. We have study time in the evening on Saturdays instead of the mornings. This could be a lethal time or a time of great studying. Considering our zone is one big hilarious happy family. It changes from crazy to spiritual. 3 of the Starsi's(Elders) came in with their hair all gooped up like a greaser, an electrocuted man, and Shark boy. It was hilarious to watch them take pictures trying to look cool. Then I remember them holding up a floor fan and rapping through it. I wish I documented the moment but I was laughing too hard to comprehend just what exactly was going on around me. 

I have begun to read the New Testament. I just finished Matthew. My favorite chapter is 14. Read it now if don't know what it entails. I almost cried at how awesome our Spasitel (Savior) is. I loooooove personal study time. Who knew I would enjoy reading so much? WELL WHEN YOU ARE READING THE WORD OF GOD IT IS HARD TO PUT IT DOWN! Those words are so delicious. I love cross referencing things and reading the Joseph Smith translations (bless Joseph's heart for clarifying what some of those random words mean) 

Sometimes it seems like I am back in school. Kicking in my short term memory so I may get through a lesson with an investigator. Then I remind myself I am a missionary. Without my work here, these people might not get the chance to hear of their chance at Salvation. Sometimes I hold my name tag in my hand for a token of remembrance. It is soooo fun to be a missionary but it also takes a lot of hard diligent work to be a successful missionary. That is something that really hit me this last week as we started to learn the 'cases' of Czech. Look this language up on the internet. You will be amazed at how crazy it is!

My most sincere apologies for this letter being all over the place. My P-Day has been so productive and all over the place. My mind is still racing :) 

So all missionaries have this card. Its basically a 'get out of jail free' card. I have never heard of it before. It is for the cases where a random citizen observes me and another sister knocking on doors and possibly doing something illegal. NO MAAM! My card basically says I have the authority and permission to preach (Preach The Word and bring Czech people their salvation!) Not exactly the salvation part, but wouldn't that be cool? hahaha. There is good news, cool news, and bad news. The bad news is: sorry mom, I will not be home June 17th-ish in 2016. Cool news: the transfers in my mission last 9 weeks. Good news: I have more time to love the people of the Czech Republic!! 19 month mission-here I come. The exact date I will be home is July 7, 2016.

Lets end on a good note. The Provo Temple opened back up after the holidays. We went this morning and it was a beautiful session! That temple is very circular and large and Svaty Krava (holy cow but a bad translation of it) GORGEOUS. It was awesome to do a session with the missionaries in my zone. 

I love mission life. The MTC isn't bad yet. The only thing I can complain about is the influenza broke into the campus. We are not allowed to shake hands, or high five. I basically hold my breath everywhere I go so I won't get sick. Don't worry though-I drink a combination of Cranberry Juice, and Orange, Guava, Passion Fruit juice everyday! 

I love you all, thanks for the support and letters!

-Sestra Hale 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

2014 was grand but HELLO 2015!

Week Two. Accomplished. 

First off, I'm sure you are curious of Christmas in the MTC. First off we arose at 6:30 because we are all obedient missionaries. Secondly, we had a little longer time to eat our breakfast. We then had a devotional that was amazing. Elder Nelson and his wife came to speak to us! Then we had study time, then lunch, THEN A TALENT SHOW! I ended up beat boxing for an Elder that was a yo-yo master. It was so tight. There were a few weird raps done and lots of Elders and Sisters singing/playing that Hallelujah song about King David. Then we called home, then we had dinner or something then in the evening we had people from the Hale theater in Utah come sing to us all dressed up and what not. Then we had a live nativity! It was funny because they were all missionaries acting it out, and some of them were distracted angels and shepherds. But it was still awesome. Then we watched The Nativity Hollywood movie. It was a good Christmas.....AND DID I MENTION IT WAS MY FIRST WHITE CHRISTMAS? I prayed mightily for snow on Christmas. Man, was my faith strengthened! It was a beautiful and fun day. 

So on my 3rd day here I taught an investigator. Her name is "Jana". This last week the word came out that she and I knew each other in the past life. We went to EFY together in 2010 so it was cool that we had a connection. All of the Starsi's (elders) thought I was a traitor because they had to teach people they didn't know. haha. 

I never realized how fast an hour goes by with all this emailing. It is crazy. 

My Czech language is coming! I also started crying last night when I was teaching "Jana" about the Ten Commandments because there were some words I said that I know I didn't know. The gift of tongues is real. Thank you to everyone who is keeping missionaries in your prayers. You have NO idea how much it helps and how much we can feel the support. It is stressful and hard at times but the comfort from the Spirit is unreal. I love learning fundamentals and the Doctrine of Christ and applying those when I an inviting others to come unto Christ. It's funny. I thought all this role playing in the MTC would be weird and distracting but the second I am done praying outside my  investigators door (a classroom down the hall from mine) I feel the Spirit and I knock on their door with confidence. 

Cirkev Jezise Krista je Pravda.
The Church of Jesus Christ is True. 

I am understanding that more and more as I am preparing to serve those of the Czech Republic. 

Attached are some photos from various shenanigans
Christmas Eve:
 My Name Badge:
 New Year's Eve:
Me and Sister B.
Trip to Provo Temple:

. Don't ask questions about the Roostapus. I can't tell any information regarding the SharkHorse Initiation. (my district elders made up a sweet initiation) It is highly classified. 

to Matka

Matka (Mother)!
I love you - I will talk to you soon and you'll probably get this after Christmas so let me tell you about a cool thing. On our THIRD day here we had an investigator we were to teach. Without knowing the language. Crazy? Ano (yes). But as I bore the little testimony I knew in Czech, I felt the Spirit. When I told her (or at least I think I told her) that God loved her, I know that she too felt the Spirit.
Tak (So), my teacher, Brotr K, explained something. He said, "You all probably thought the MTC was 90% language, 10% teaching . . . it's actually 90% teaching with the Spirit (or learning how to) and 10% language. I think I'm doing this right!  I love you Mom!
--Sestra Hale