Friday, October 4, 2013

MTC Week One

Dear Family & Friends,

Thank you SO much for the letters, emails, packages, and most importantly, the love and support! I can't believe I've been here for 10 days now. It's gone by so fast, but yet feels like I've been here forever. I have learned and grown so much over this past week and a half! I have no doubt that these 6 weeks here at the Missionary Training Center will prepare me for what is to come in my mission.
I'm so glad it's finally our first P (preparation) day! My companion and I woke up at 5:30 this morning to make it to the laundry room to beat the rush. We also found this secret classroom on the 3rd floor of our classroom building where we could print out our emails. That way I could read what everyone wrote me, think about what to write, and not waste any of my precious limited email time! It's super nice.

Life here at the MTC is busy but awesome! I am learning so much! The Portuguese is coming along. The first few days were pretty rough, especially because our teachers didn't speak English. After teaching our first lesson in Portuguese last Friday, I felt so overwhelmed. I wondered how I could ever learn everything in just 6 weeks. But I know it's possible! I can now pray, say my testimony, and talk about the basics of the gospel in Portuguese. We also sing a hymn in Portuguese before each class- I LOVE it. We taught a lesson yesterday and I didn't have to use any Portuguese notes! My companion and I call it our "caveman Portuguese" but at least we're trying. It's not so much about the words we say but the Spirit that we bring with us. I have realized that when I don't stress out so much about planning everything, the Spirit really does prompt you what to say. I know the Lord is blessing us for our hard work, obedience, and strong desires to serve Him. 

I am in a district with 6 sisters and 4 elders. All 6 of us girls are in one room (3 bunk beds) and we are all together every minute of every day. We get along and we're all really good friends now so it works out! Of course sometimes I have to bite my tongue and put on a smile, but I am trying so hard to just love and have charity for others, and see them how Christ would see them. My companion's name is Sister Lowther (from South Carolina) and she is also going to Brazil Sao Paulo North. She did a year at BYU just like I did. She is strong in areas where I am weak (for example, she is a lot more bold than I am) so we teach together really well!

The biggest thing I've learned so far is the importance of FAITH. We've been taught about faith in Christ our whole lives, but not until this week did I really come to understand it. When I have faith in my Savior, I put my FULL trust in Him. When I sit there and doubt my Portuguese skills or knowledge about the gospel, I am not trusting Him. I am doubting the Lord's ability to help me! I know the Lord knows me and has a plan. I need to have confidence that everything will work out! Whenever I get frustrated, I like to look down at my name tag and remember than I am truly a representative of Jesus Christ. My purpose is to invite others to come unto Him. I am saying and doing those things that He would do if He were here. I know that when I do everything I can on my end, the Lord will do the rest. I have felt it this week as I have been humbled time and time again. The Lord blesses us when we accept His will and His timing and put our full trust in Him. Read Alma 13:28-29. It's a good one :)

I am so so so so grateful for this opportunity I have to serve a mission. Whenever I get homesick or tired, I try to remember how I need to make the most of my time here at the MTC. Never again will I get the chance to be surrounded by 3,000+ missionaries who are sacrificing 18-24 months to serve the Lord. There is such a special spirit here. Never again will I get the chance to be taught by such incredible teachers who have so much to share with us about the joys of missionary work. Never again will I get to attend so many uplifting conferences, devotionals, firesides, and speakers and be taught about the gospel and what it can do to change lives.

Ahhh I could write for hours about all the things I have learned and experienced this week but time is running out. I love you all so much and I want you to know that I have a testimony of the Savior. We are never alone and He is always there to carry us through whatever we are going through. He lives! 
Sister Jorgensen

P.S. Pics are of the district, the temple, and getting to wear jeans on Pday!

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