It is extremely exciting and frightening that I am half way done with the training at the CCM. I am more than excited to be with the people of Chile. However, time is going by so quickly and I know it will only continue to be this way. I love the CCM. And have been so grateful for my teachers and classes. I know there is nowhere else that I could be able to speak the Spanish Language in 3 to 4 weeks (with only the prior knowledge of numbers, colors, and introduction words) other than here where the Spirit is doing the teaching. Of course I still have tons to learn and for that I am grateful for these last few weeks of training.
I know I am biased when I say this but our Elders are the funniest! During gym time this past week my companion and I looked out side the doors to the street. We saw Elder Mace laying on the cement and then standing back up to only lay back down almost in the same spot again. We walked out to see what was going on. The Elders had all been marking where his head touched to have him lay is feet in that same spot. They were using poor Elder Mace as a measuring stick to measure 40 yards so they could time each other and race. Elder Mace is 6 feet and 2 inches so he was the fasted ruler they had. Hermana Vawdrey and I soon became the finish line. We are never bored in our District 10 B. They are all 18 year old boys and always have the best of time. However, they continue to amaze me with the profound testimonies and spiritual insights.
Our district in mainly headed to Concepcion, Chile with me. My companion is and 3 sets of Elders. The other two sets are going to Washington, Wisconsin, Texas, and Tennessee.
And Then There Were 11:
Sadly we went from 12 Missionaries to 11 this week in our District. Last week our Elder Montoya took a hard fall. There was a crazy rain storm last Wednesday night at dinner. When we walked back to our building after dinner to our classroom the entrance to the building looked almost flooded with all the water that was tracked in from umbrellas, shoes, and open doors. Missionaries were gliding in on the water when Elder Montoya decided to try and slid on the sopping wet tile floor and do a 180 degree turn like he would on a skin board at the beach. He landed the turn but not for long. His feet slipped out from under him and his face it the tile first. He took a moment to get up, at the time we all thought he just was trying to keep his composure. When he lifted up there was teeth and blood underneath him. So sorry if this is more gruesome then one would like. He is still his happy joyful self. He had to leave on Wednesday to go home for 6 months to take care of his health. He broke his nose in 3 places and knocked out one of his front teeth and split half of his other front tooth. He will have to re submitted his papers so we do not know where he will be serving. However, we do know that there is a plan for him. Whatever it was that needed him at home for these quick short months we know he will make a difference anywhere. He is an impressive guy though. He was not even bummed about his teeth he hurt more having to leave our district family. He said it felt more like he was leaving home rather than returning to it. The night he left there was not one dry eye in our classroom. He will always be apart of District 10 B. And in the words of Elder Montoya, "10 B is vida".
Mexico City Temple:
We got to go to the Mexico City Temple on our Preparation Day this week. The temple is closed because it is being cleaned but we were still able to take a trip to their beautiful Visitor Center. We had a tour by the sister missionaries there and they even did it for us in English. This probably is not the kindest, but it was nice to see someone else struggle trying to speak a different language. Of course it was not perfect English, but it was enough. Spanish or English the spirit can testify. The Gospel has become so simple to me in the Spanish language. With my limited vocabulary teaching and testifying is so pure and simple. A Hispanic girl around my age approached me at the visitor center. She was with missionaries from the Mexico area. She was not a member but said she really wanted to speak to me. We talked about the big differences from America and Mexico. She was just full of compliments and was such a kind heart to talk with. She wanted my opinion on the scripture case she was purchasing. Of course we had to leave so I bore my testimony and thanked her for reaching out to me. The spirit was muy fuerta (very strong). I can hardly remember the Spanish I spoke but I will also remember her sweet smile.
Because of the lack of online time we have I do not proof read my post like I should. My apologies for the grammar errors I know I have. The mission is hard and stressful but it is right I want to be and more importantly where my Father in Heaven wants me to be. I love my district, I love my companion, I am loving (it is a process) the language, I love this work, and I love the Lord.
Much love and gratitude,