Can you believe that I've been here for seven weeks? It is really amazing to me how fast the time has come and gone. In two weeks from today I'll be boarding a plane in Salt Lake City and flying to Montréal! I am so excited to be there! This week has been great and I've used it to its fullest!
We'll get started with Wednesday. In class we started focusing on the Role of the Holy Ghost in our lessons. Just about each week we focus on a new fundamental of missionary work and I have been looking forward to this one for a while! I am so glad for the teachers we have—I can tell that they were really amazing missionaries and love the work they do. After class I was walking to lunch with Elder Keenan and I saw Elder Nate Greenwood! I was so happy to see him! We are pretty much the last ones in our grade to leave on their missions (except for Kevin Fonseca, but he doesn't count because he's basically like 13... Hey Kev-Bot, write me!) Elders Pilling and McKechnie taught us (we were being the mock-stigators) and I learned a lot again from being on the other side of the lesson. Afterwards, we taught Rimas and cleared up a few of his questions about the Prophet and his role before conference. We brought in a picture of President Monson for him to see and he was pretty confused as to why he didn't have a beard like Moses! It was pretty funny, honestly! I started Jesus the Christ again—what a great book! I've started waking up a little early to get some more reading time in. I want to finish it before I leave the MTC.
Thursday was a pretty normal day. We started with a great French lesson in the morning and I finally got a grasp on one of the oddest parts about French—the placement of direct and indirect objects in the sentence and transitive vs. intransitive verbs. At first I kind of just went with it not knowing the rules behind it so it is such a relief to know exactly what is happening now! For TRC we had our first 40 minute lesson (in the past we had two 20 minute lessons) and it went nothing like we expected. We've always taught people in TRC as members, so we went in thinking that we would teach a few points of doctrine from the Gospel of Jesus Christ but when I asked him to pray he said, "I've never prayed before, can you teach me?" Elder Keenan and I just looked at each other to confirm that what we had just heard. So we went cold turkey with no lesson plan and taught the first lesson up until the First Vision. It actually went pretty well, but I learned a lot about what I need to review, and which points I need to teach better. In the evening, I got together with Elder Pilling for some advice on my scripture study. His dad was an institute teacher and because of that, he has some great study habits that I want to pick up. He helped me build a new study system that I've really liked!
Friday started off really great! Our lesson with Lyze was amazing! We taught her about personal revelation and focused a lot on conference the next day. We were teaching in a room with a computer, which I knew beforehand, and so I thought we should use all of the resources at hand and watch a video about conference. The Spirit was so strong as we were watching it! It was a testimony to me about the powerful tool that technology is as a teaching assistant. Videos really capture attention and share a message visually and with powerful music in a way that you can't normally do. She seemed pretty excited about General Conference before we left. In class, Frère Smith wasn't there and so we had a sub. He shared a good thought about staying organized in order for the Spirit to communicate ideas and thoughts to you more easily. He told us about a few of the miracles he took part in on his mission and said, "If you expect miracles, you will find them." I really liked that and I put it up by my desk. I memorized the First Vision in French!
We started Saturday off with a weekly service project, which put us in the perfect mood for General Conference! Conference was absolutely amazing! They somehow managed to get all of the missionaries in the MTC into the big gym/auditorium that they use for big events. You should have seen that room when President Monson made the announcement about the new missionary ages! Everyone stood and cheered—even President Brown was standing clapping! It was amazing! I have faith that this work is the work of the Lord and this change is just the work maturing and sizing up for the future! I don't have much time now, so I'll just share a few of my favorite moments. Elder Nelson did an amazing job at preparing the field for us! "Ask the missionaries! They can help you!" We all got a kick out of that talk. Elder Ballard had a great talk about doing your part in the Church—it's a cooperative effort! Elder Oaks delivered probably the hardest talk in about the best way possible! Boldly and simply! What a strong man! Priesthood session was especially great! My favorite part was when President Eyring broke out the French. "J'aime et j'espaire!" or "I love and I hope!"
(I have no more time! Here's just the quick points for Sunday and Monday!)
Sunday: Music and the Spoken Word in the morning. Loved the paintings and the message. General Conference again. Favorite Talk: Eyring: In our trials seek God, He is there. I had just read D&C 121 before the session had started, very cool. Holland: How to be a true disciple of Jesus Christ. Richard G. Scott: Family history work is important. Don R. Clarke: Understanding the sacrifice gives meaning to the sacrament (Dad, you should use this for your lesson on the Sacrament!). Took a lot of notes in my personal journal so that I wouldn't ever lose them. I am going to get them copied and printed so I can have them in my scriptures. Temple walk, saw two good friends and talked to them about going on their missions. I am really anxious to hear who has decided to serve! Congratulations to Marissa Smith and Gemma Grover! Fireside (Chad Lewis) and a movie. More sitting than I've ever done!
Monday: Lyze is getting baptized on 10 Nov! So cool! I wish it were real.