Monday, January 23, 2012

I'm here! And still alive! (mostly)

Well, I have arrived at the MTC. Since I came in on Wednesday it feels like I have been going, going, going ever since. The spirit here is so amazing and I'm so lucky I get to be a missionary! Thank you so much to everyone who sent me a DearElder. They were awesome!
On Wednesday, one of the first things they had us do was teach lessons. We were in a big group of missionaries, and "investigators" (not sure if they were real or not) came into the room and we taught them. On the last one, the teacher pulled me and my companion Sister B. out of the class and asked if we would be the first ones to sit down and get to know the investigator and start teaching. It was very nerve wracking! We said a quick prayer to love Carlo and to know what he needed and then went in and met Carlo. As we started talking, the most amazing thing happened. Carlo completely opened up to us and shared some of the big problems he has in his life. I know the Spirit was working through us, and I'm so glad that was our first teaching experience in the MTC.
I guess I should tell you a little about my companions. I have two! The first is Sister B. Her family lives in Georgia, but she grew up in China and then Switzerland. She already speaks fluent Mandarin and is going to Taiwan Taichung on her mission. (she also speaks a little French, that will be important later). She is very energetic and outgoing, a little bit the opposite of me, but I love having her as a companion. We laugh a lot and have so much fun together.

My other companion is Sister V. She is from Tahiti and only speaks French (the little French Sister B. speaks is very handy). She is going to Madagascar on her mission! Even though we don't speak the same language, I can tell that she is a very loving and kind person, with a huge testimony. She is so brave! This is the first time she's been away from her family and she doesn't even understand the language people are speaking around her. I know that I am with the right companions. I can clearly see Heavenly Father's will in putting us together. I hope to learn so much from these awesome sisters.
Since I already speak German, I'm in the accelerated program and the international branch! It is so great to be surrounded by missionaries from all over the world. Sister B. and I are the only Americans in our entire district. Others are from Korea, Singapore, Poland, and Taiwan. They all bring such different talents and insights to our classes. I don't get to speak much German, but I'm learning some of the words I will need on my own, and I’m sure I'll learn a lot more German once I get to Germany!
It was a little hard to sit still through classes all day at first, but I'm learning so much from my teachers. Last night we had a devotional and the speaker taught us that sometimes, the reason investigators aren't progressing is that they don't know how to read the scriptures or how to pray, so we need to be sure to teach them. We can't just assume that they don't want to learn the gospel. I will be sure to remember that once I get to the field.
Sister Stewart

P.S. this computer has most of the letters rubbed off, sorry for any mistakes, hopefully my Dad fixed them :) 
Alexandra/Jessie Carter- If you see Jessie Carter, could you please tell her to write a letter using DearElder in French to my companion Sister Vaetua? I want her to get some mail! Her box number is the same as mine
Adrienne- girl, I was so glad to see your letter! You're awesome!

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