Sunday, January 18, 2015

ccsm: the mtc

In my first of the Colorado Colorado Springs Mission (CCSM) series, I will be sharing my Missionary Training Center (MTC) experience.

December 18, 2013 I entered the MTC. It was the scariest day of my life. I am surprised I didn't puke. But oh it was such a great learning experience. I was blessed with wonderful companions, a great district (the small scale group of missionaries we worked with) and a fabulous zone (the large scale group of missionaries that serve in a larger geographical area. Obviously in the MTC, this geographical area is only two classrooms, but I might as well define it now since we have 11 months to cover!)

 Sister Bentham is hilarious. She has a laugh that is contagious and is so much fun to be around.
Sister Fuchs is a sweetheart. She is kind to everyone and has a beautiful singing voice. Us three were quite different, but I could not have asked for better people to share these memories with.

 This is the classic missionary photo op. Point to where you're going on the map outside the cafeteria. If you don't do this, you must not be a missionary. haha

Things I learned about the MTC:

Everyone knows the Hunger Games Mockingjay whistle call thing. Everyone. Some of our Elders started it sometimes..
Don't drink the orange juice! (thank goodness I didn't learn that by personal experience.)
"pray always" means pray before you workout, before you go out the door, before you eat, before you  sleep, before you study, after you study, at the end of the day, with your companions, with your district, before a lesson, at the beginning of class, before you get dressed, after you use the restroom (I'm just kidding;)
Don't put your bags outside the cafeteria. They confiscate them.
Ask for blessings.
Haircuts are free!
Mail is the most important thing a missionary could receive.
Knock when you're going into a lesson with your teacher. They're not your teacher anymore. They're your investigator. Their classroom becomes their home. And barging in on them is not good.
12 days, 24/7 of non-stop missionary firehose is hard. But so good.

Our wonderful district. (L-R)
Elder Mathews: Never stops laughing. He and Sister Bentham were great friends.
Elder Jelte: Our district leader. He was always really nice.
Elder Barnhurst: A crazy kid from Vegas.
Elder Wells: He had a really strong testimony and a deep love for the Gospel.
Elder Scutt: Gave wonderful blessings and turned to the Lord often.
Elder Freeman: He was so excited and ready to be serving a mission. I wish I could be as humble as he was.

Our sweet Elders went to the Arkansas Little Rock Mission, and us three Sisters headed out to Colorado Springs.

A few of our teachers. Sister Fielding (now Henry) is a funny story for next time. 

I was at the MTC over Christmas, which was not easy, but it helped me realize how important sacrifice is. When we give all we can to God, even if it means time away from our family, we are blessed for it. I learned a lot about myself then. I have struggles, stress is hard on me, I still draw stick figures like spoons, I am OCD, but I also learned that we can rely on Jesus Christ. Sure I got to listen to Elder Bednar from the Quorum of the 12 Apostles speak. Sure I had it easy and didn't have to learn a language. But those experiences are nothing if I don't take something from it. And I learned that we are known individually by God. He is aware of us; watching over us; there to listen to us; and because of His Son's Atonement, you and me and all of us, can get through anything.

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