Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Greetings from the MTC!

(We were so excited to get our FIRST email from Sarah who reported to the Provo MTC on Tuesday, February 10, 2015.)

Thank you for your prayers and thoughts, and know that you are in mine.

I can't even begin to describe what the last week has been like... First of all, I have the BEST companion in the world. Sister Kendrick is from Hooper, Utah, and is an absolute sweetheart! It's been really strange discovering how much we have in common, everything from food preferences, to a love of music, books, sibling relations, and the fact that we both "requested" cold in our papers. Oh and get this, 3 of the 4 girls in our district know ASL (sign language)! We've been having a lot of fun. Speaking of the district, we have a great one; all but one are going to the Calgary, Canada mission together, and in the last few days we have grown really close. Apparently we have a group of geeks, so we quote books/shows/movies all the time :)

I have to admit, this has been a rollercoaster of a week; it took a few days to adjust to MTC life, what with strict schedules, tons of studying, and even little rules. (The hardest one by far is that we aren't allowed to say "guys," it has to be "Elders and Sisters." The whole district has struggled with that one.) Oh, and just a shout out to Joy: everyone loves the desserts, and it's been fun being able to tell everyone about them.

On a more serious note, this week has been packed with incredible learning experiences. The spirit is so strong here on campus, and everyone just glows with enthusiasm. This is a very special place, and I am so grateful to be here. We have fantastic instructors, and Preach My Gospel has become my new best friend. We have had the opportunity to go to wonderful devotionals, and from them I have received several personal revelations, namely that this IS where the Lord wants me to be, and that he is mindful of my efforts. We also got to walk around the Provo Temple grounds, and this afternoon we get to go do a session. I am so very grateful to have had the opportunity to go a few times before the mission, so thank you Mom!

Part of our learning experience is getting to teach investigators. My first one's name is Dreazo. He is an actor, and we have been helping him work through moving forward from his negative past. At our first lesson, the coolest thing happened; Sister K and I had a plan, but as we listened, it became apparent that he needed something else. I was able to follow a prompting to open to Alma 36 for him to read and relate to, and that really opened up a door. It would not have been possible without the spirit there to teach and guide. Our other investigator, Hailey, is wonderful as well, but most of our lessons with her are through Skype video chatting, which is a whole other kind of challenge. It's become ever more apparent to me that no matter how much we study in class, I ultimately learn the most when we actually teach, because what it really comes down to is that we listen to the spirit and open our mouths.

My missionary purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ by helping the receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. I have discovered while here that it really is a must to forget yourself and go to work, because we are called to bring people to the Savior, and our own priorities will only get in the way.

Remember, testimony is knowing something is true, but conversion is continually acting on that knowledge.

I hope you are all doing well, and know that I love you!

Sister Patterson

(Sarah will be leaving for Calgary on Tuesday the 24th, and with the timing she might not have another P-day to email home for a couple weeks. Our prayers are with her, and we look forward to hearing from her again soon!)

Greetings from the MTC- Pictures

(Here are the pictures Sarah emailed from her two weeks at the Provo MTC.)

Arriving at the MTC

Saying goodbye to Mom & Dad in front of the MTC

Sarah's first companion, Sister Kendrick

The girls from District 59

Receiving her calling as Online Trainer for new missionaries

The Provo Temple

District 59

P-day with Sister Kendrick