Friday, February 14, 2014

Scariest Moment Yet - Week 2.5

Dear familia,

This is my last week at the MTC!  Finally.  I've only been here two weeks and I love it, but I'm read to go preach His gospel!

So there are lots of missionaries here that are speaking Chinese and going to Taiwan.  It's kind of funny because they're all at the same level as me about except they know more church words and I know more day to day words.  So when they're talking to each other in Chinese thinking they're cool, I like to eavesdrop.  One time at lunch, I heard an Elder saying, "how do you say orange?" and I was thinking to myself, "cheng se."  There's another girl in my district, Sister Galgiani, who's been to China and so knows a bit of Chinese.  She, like me, thought she'd go Chinese speaking to Taiwan but instead she's going to Temple Square English speaking.  We like to talk in Chinese to each other sometimes.  It's so fun, I love Chinese.
The food here is making me sick.  One night I just ate ice cream because everything else was gross.  One day they had fish and chips for dinner.  The English and Australian sisters in our district were pretty upset because the fish and chips looked like overcooked chicken nuggets and apparently didn't taste that good.  Sister Orndal said to me, "how would you like it if we took American food like a hamburger and messed it up?"  It was so funny.  Poor sisters.

The Elders in my zone left on Monday which was sad.  I got a little attached to them, imagine that!  This is a like a longer, more hardcore EFY without all the flirting and hugging and smell and it's sad because when we leave we can't just go home and facebook each other and cry in bed all day.  So sad.  But we have work to do!

They talked to us a lot about modesty.  Maxi skirts are not allowed for anyone who's wondering.  I know it's been a rumor but they told us here.  Except apparently in my mission we're allowed to wear them.  Yay!!  Apparently some sisters here get mad when the ladies try to tell them they're not dressing appropriately and argue or complain.  Like seriously?  We're asking people to change their lives but we can't change our wardrobe for 18 months?  Ridiculous.

Tuesday night I had the scariest moment yet at the MTC.  My heart was pounding and I thought I was going to die.  We had a devotional by someone from the seventy.  He said he was going to try something different that night.  So, he walked off of the stage with two microphones and went around to random missionaries in the crowd, asking them questions on the spot in front of thousands on missionaries and while on camera.  Me, Sister Wog, and my new companion Sister  Hansen were sitting in the front of the bleachers where he would have very easy access to us.  He started to walk around, asking questions, and we got nervous.  At one point while he was talking, he stopped right in front of the three of us while talking.  All of us sat there frozen and tried not to make eye contact while everyone else looked at us with sympathy.  However, God answered our prayers and he moved on after 30 seconds without asking us a question.  And then we burst out laughing.  Quietly and reverently of course.

I'm having a bit of a hard time getting up in the mornings.  I'm always the last one up.  Imagine that.  Sister Galgiani acts as our mom every morning and is the one that turns on the lights at 6:30 and says "good morning sister!  It's time to get up!" while the rest of us roll over and ignore her.  Sister Wog gets up before me so while I'm struggling to wake up she hands me my shirt and socks and shoes for gym since I'm on the top bunk and can't even think of climbing down for at least two minutes.  She's so sweet.  Some days I'm more tired than others.  One day during personal study time, I was forcing myself to stay awake.  However, one minute I was reading my scriptures and then 5 minutes later I woke up super confused and to see three sisters sitting on the floor studying instead of their seats.  Usually if I accidentally fall asleep I wake up within 5 seconds.  I think my body was so tired that it forced myself to shut down because it literally felt like I passed out because I had no recollection of going to sleep and I was out cold.  That was fun.

Sister Wog and I have another companion this week.  Her name is Sister Hansen.  She's from Denmark, Spanish speaking, and is going to my mission.  She's been at MTC west for 6 weeks so she came over here to join us for a week for visitors' center training.  She's super nice and cute.  The first thing I noticed about her is that she was wearing old converse with her skirt and that she does every day.  I don't know if it's against the rules but I think it's funny and cute and different.  Maybe I should get some converse (kidding).
Visitors' center training has been going great.  Wednesday morning we all went to Temple Square to have a quick tour and overview.  There are 24 of us.  Most are going to Temple Square.  Sister Hansen and I are going to DC, two are going to SLC East so they'll have the Park City visitors' center part time, and three are going to the Mormon Battalion place in California (San Diego?  I can't google anything!).  These sisters are from all over the world.  Two are from Taiwan, two from the Philippines, one from Mongolia, one from Brazil, Peru, England, Australia, Mexico, Sweden, and Norway.  It's so cool, they're all so cute.  I love how we all come from different places but we have the same purpose.  It's great.

We've started doing online proselyting which is my FAVORITE thing so far.  Sister Wog and I each get on the website and list each other as companions and then wait for people from to chat with us.  I know Mom told me not to chat with strangers online but the Prophet says it's ok... so sorry.  The first person we talked to was really pleasant.  He went on and on about how we're the devils' deceivers and leading people down to hell and how Joseph Smith is a false prophet and that one day we'll be judged by God because of what we're doing.  We just encouraged him to read the Book of Mormon and told him that if the book isn't true, then Joseph Smith is a false prophet and he needs to find out for himself.  The next guy was the same, except a little more polite.  He said "no offense but.." which means it was totally fine.  He told us how Joseph Smith was a mason and the masons worship the devil so we're devil worshippers and whatnot.  I told him that Joseph Smith was a mason at one point and so were many of the founding fathers but back then it was more of a brotherhood and no our church isn't affiliated with them and never has been.  I encouraged him to read the Book of Mormon as well.  Honestly we weren't even mad or offended or anything.  We just thought it was so much fun.  Also, a creepy feature is that we can see what they're typing before they send it.  So we'd see that they're typing "your church is..." and we'd try to guess what they're going to say.  We'd be like, "oooh, a cult?  a devil's church?  crazy?"  It was kind of funny.  Another lady just needed help knowing how to find and contact the bishop of a man who attacked her daughter.  She said she didn't know who to turn to so we helped her because "ask the missionaries, they can help!"  Yesterday was a bit better.  We had a discussion with a girl from England.  She had questions about the translation of the Book of Mormon, why "Mormons think Jesus was American," polygamy and that she didn't think "people should be Mormons as an excuse to practice polygamy," and why we don't drink tea.  It was mainly misinformation except for the tea.  By the end she told us she understood and thanked us.  She then said she wanted to join our church but she's lesbian.  We said that's alright and we'd love to have her and directed her to  She logged off before we could get her email.  But that was nice I feel like we helped her.  Every time she said "ooh I understand now" Sister Wog and I high-fived each other.  I could seriously do online proselyting all day.  It's so much fun.  I love sharing the gospel with people from around the world rather than pretending to in class.

Last night, we had TRC where people came in and pretended they were at a visitors' center and we had to go up to them and talk to them and teach them for 15 minutes.  The first couple was hard because apparently Sister Wog and Sister Hansen couldn't hear what they were saying.  I was wondering why they weren't helping me or backing me up.  Oh well.  The second group was a guy and girl who were members and apparently the guy just barely returned home from his mission to Argentina.  We're taught that at the visitors' center, we're not just there to help out nonmembers.   We're there to bring everyone closer to Christ regardless of who they are.  So basically we're not supposed to blow off members which is nice.  Anyway, we got talking and I had prayed to know what to say and so I started testifying about revelation and how God is very involved in our lives and that if they keep a journal where they record where they've seen the hand of the Lord in their life then they will look back and realize that He was always there even if it didn't seem like it at the time.  I guess I did a good job because the woman starting crying.  Score.  I love helping people!  Then we talked to two girls who looked 15 but were apparently 18 and 20.  Weird.  We talked about the light of Christ.  Honestly, I didn't even want to do TRC but I loved it because I enjoy helping people out.  This is what it's all about!

Tell everyone who asks that I love being a missionary and everyone should do it!

I leave this Tuesday for DC.  I have to leave the MTC by 4:30AM and then my flight is at 9:45. Also, I don't know when my next P day is.  So sorry about that.. haha.  My next email will be from DC!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Being a missionary is the coolest.  Go out and be a missionary today, it's fun!  Joshua 1:9

Love you all!!!!!!!

-Sister Black

The extra one in the picture with me and Sister Wog is Sister Hansen.  Also, the picture with all of us in front of the map has the sisters in my district and the elders in my zone that left on Monday to North Carolina.  I miss them :(  K love you talk to you later.


  1. FYI for Bro and Sis Black pday is Monday in DC.

    1. Thanks! I can't wait to hear how it's been going so far.