AWESOME Week!! Also, a very unique week for the MTC. Momma thanks so much for the package! We love the flag, it spices up our classroom. The pictures were great also! I love the ones of me and the Lukey man. I also got one from Camille last Friday which fantastic as well! I'm spoiled...
So let's see... Saturday and Sunday were just great. Half of our zone left on Tuesday so on Saturday we had a big last soccer game as a zone. It was legit! It's really fun playing with the foreigners, they get REALLY in to it. One of the Elders that left is from England, Elder Herycz (Hair Itch), he's super fun to play with. Whenever I would miss a shot he would always yell "Real Salt Lake!" Funny stuff. Sunday was a fantastic day as always. In the morning I always have branch council and then we have Preisthood as a zone. Then we always have a district meeting where we reflect on the past week and see what went good and what we need to work on. We also talk about out "investigators" and how we can better teach them. Good times. Then at around 2 we have sacrament meeting as a zone. It's my favorite part of the day for sure. The branch president picks two out of the congregation to speak and then a member of the branch presidency usually speaks with their wife. Sunday's are nice and relaxing, we still study quite a bit but we also get some time to relax. For this Sunday's fireside Shery Dew spoke. It was awesome! She spoke on the importance of keeping the long-term perspective in mind. My favorite quote was "This life isn't about this life, It's about the next." She's an incredible speaker. Everyone was so jealous when they found out that she teaches instute in Bountiful. I went up and said Hi to her and told her to tell the gang hi for me. Remind her when she teaches next cause I don't really think she was really listening to me. Haha
We knew that this week we were supposed to be going to New York for our Visa's but he hadn't heard anything from the Travel Office so we weren't sure if we were going to go. But, then at about 5 o'clock they came on the loud speaker and asked for us all to go down to the travel office. We were stoked! They told us that we would be flying out the next night (Tuesday) for New York! They said that we would be leaving at 8:30 on Tuesday night to catch the Red Eye. Waa HOOOOO! Tuesday night there is always a fireside that ends around 8 so we were super glad that we were going to be able to still go to the Fireside. This week it was Elder Robbins of the Seventy. He spoke about how we can better receive revelation through the scriptures and Preach My Gospel. I took some good notes that I think will really help through out the mish. Oh I almost forgot! Also, on Tuesday I got paged on the loud speaker to go down to President Brown's (MTC President) office. I was freaking out... I had no clue why I was going there, but luckily once I got in there his seceretary informed me that the Family was all fine and that he just wanted to talk to me :) So this week is when all of the Mission Presidents come for their big Seminar with the quorum of the 12 and the First Presidency. When I got in his office he asked me if I would want to pass the sacrament in the big Seminar Sacrament meeting. YES!! He then told me who was all going to be there, all of the mission presidents and their wives, the quorum (not sure how many), and also you can guess who will most likely be Presiding... I was freaking out! He told me to keep it a secret cause there are only a few missionaries out of the 2,000 that get to do it. So, shhhhhhh. Oh, and he told me I had to go and get a hair cut... You better believe next week's email will be all about it. We have two practices before Sunday, one tonight and one tomorrow night. I've never practiced passing the sacrament! But it should be fun! Also, this week's tuesday night Devotional is going to be a pretty stacked line up as well since all of the mission presidents will still be here. We're planning on getting in line pretty early so we can make sure we get good seats. It is going to be a very good week!!!
So..... New York! We left the MTC at about 8:30 and were off into the "Real World"! Super wierd feeling... We got to the airport and checked in and all that jazz and had about an hour and half to kill so we went to find some "real" food! You better believe we went straight to Cafe Rio!! I was in heaven, I have a picture that demonstrates this heaven on my next memory card. Get excited. Our flight took off at 11:55, I got the isle seat which I usually love, except when it's the red eye and all i want to do is sleep. I could never really get comfortable so I kinda just sat there for 4 hours. haha. So we landed at about 6:00 NYC time and got picked up by some big Italian dude named Chucky. He was quite the character, he drove a pretty G Lincoln. The 5 of us had to pile in to 4 seats which made for quite the adventure. I felt like I was going to throw up by the time he dropped us off at the temple. So yeah, he dropped us off at the temple, where all the administration offices are and we met up with a few senior missionaries who are serving a public affairs mission. One of them, Elder Jones used to be the Supreme Court Justice in Arizona, pretty cool. And the other, Elder Lynn or something like that was from Bountiful. It was nice to talk about B-town with somebody. I guess he lives on Bountiful Ridge. So they took us to get some Breakfast next door at a super good Cafe. I got some waffles which were amazing. Then they let us go take an hour nap in some of the offices, we needed it! I'm still tired... haha. At about 10 we went and hopped on the Subway to go to the Embassy. Which is right next door to the UN. I had some good memories as we walked by the Julliard where Pops and I saw South Pacific. Good times. By the way, it was like 100 degrees in NY so we were sweating like dogs in our suits. So after about an hour we got to the embassy and applied for our Visa's which only took about 45 minutes, and then we were done! Chucky picked us back up and took us back to the Airport. He took us on a scenic way back so that we could all get some cool pictures. Me and one othere guy were the only ones that had been to New York before so the other 3 guys were loving it! It was a really cool experience, but also very eye opening. It was very different being out in the real world, especially New York, as a missionary! Every, one was staring at us. Haha One lady even came up to us in the airport and asked us if we were there working for Romney. Come on lady! It's sad how little some people know about the church. We explained to her that we were'n't out working for Romney but getting our Visas so we could go to Angola and preach the Gospel. Very cool experience. The flight home was good, I got some good studying in. It was weird landing in Salt Lake and walking down the escalator after only being in the mission for 3 weeks haha... I got a nice video of it. Good stuff. We grabbed some more real food and then were off back to the good ol' MTC! We got back at around 8:30 I'm not going to lie, it was kind of nice being back int he MTC... never thaugh I'd say that but it's the truth. haha. We were super tired after our 18 hour trip to NYC... We were in the air more than we were actually in New York. But, I'm not complaining. It was awesome!
The Portuguese is coming along pretty well. We usually teach about 2 lessons a day in Portuguese so that is helping a ton. Even though in our lessons we can't say everything that we want to say the spirit is definitely present.
I'm super happy and loving life! I can definitely feel all of your prayers.
I love you guys! Keep on Keepin on!
SAM: I hope you had a fantastic Sweet 16!! Also, I hope you got my letter. Tell all those boys to back off. :)
Lukey: Wassup big slugger! I heard that you won the home run derby! That's my boy! You're the man! Also, thanks for your note in my package! I hung it on my wall so I see it every day. Have fun in NYC buddy!
Con: You're the maaaaan maaaan. It looks like you had a fun date! Tell me bout it!
Syd: Have fun in NEW YORK! You're going to do awesome! Keep workin hard!