Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Liebe Familie,
So the Elder in our zone who still believed that Sister Young was going to Africa found out Thursday that we were joking. He had the best response when he found out: "I wrote home about that!" We just died laughing. We could not believe how much he believed, and how long it took him to figure it out:]
This week, a ton of Germans got to the MTC. They are going to Greece on their missions. They sought us out by the second day they were here. They are so friendly and so encouraging of our broken German! They told us their names and told us to watch out for their families when we get over there. Most were from Sister Young's mission, though. Aber, dass ist okay. It's good to practice our German on them, too. And I like talking to them because it makes me feel good that I can understand them when they are speaking quickly. Wahoo!
Last V Tag, Sister Young gave me cello lessons. I can now play "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" and "Come, Follow Me" on the cello. You should be so proud! The cello was pretty fun! It's a nice way to break up the monotony of the MTC, too. We're here for 9 weeks. Might as well learn an instrument, right?
Dad, I am sorry to hear about the faucet. I am sad to hear you could not be there for the burial; that must have complicated the grieving process immensely.
Also, thanks for the letters from the rest of the family! I am super jealous to hear you got to go to the Grand Canyon and Sea World! I'm glad y'all had fun (or so I gathered).
We got two new investigators last night: Typ and Yoki Turkis. We are teaching other missionaries in our district now, and these are Elder Chicky and Elder Blackley, respectively. Typ is a 20-something college student studying mechanical engineering. He lives with his father, Yoki, who is a mechanic with a 10th-grade education. Elder Blackley is one of those people who never stops smiling. So, last night, when we asked him if he was married (trying to get an idea of the family dynamic), and he told us his wife was dead with a smile on his face, we laughed a little as we said, "What?" We weren't sure if we had understood him correctly. Then he started getting his pronouns mixed up. He first said, "She killed himself." We laughed a little more as we asked again for clarification and Typ said, "Mom is a girl." (Don't worry, they were laughing, too). Then Yoki said, "He killed her." My eyes got huge as I pointed to Typ and said, "He killed her?" Trying to save the conversation, Typ said, "She died in a car accident." We sisters all said, "We're not laughing, we're crying. I'm so so sorry!" We eventually were able to compose ourselves, but it was bad. Our lesson was not too bad for the first time, but these two will be a little tough to teach. We feel like Typ won't be bad; he was already very receptive to the gospel and what we had to teach; he liked everything we had to say. But we think the dad might be a little harder. But, we've also only had one lesson, so we shall see!
Our other two investigators are coming along. We are very enthusiastic about Felix. He is starting to show such progress! We talked about temples and the importance of the gospel and the church these last couple of times. He has started seeming very intersted, but in a different way than before. We all agree we've finally struck a chord with him. He was so excited at our last lesson with a verse he had found in the Book of Mormon; he was also excited that they talked about temples in church, and he knew what was going on because we had talked about temples.
Bernadette, however, is a smoker. We discovered this in our last lesson. We were teaching the Word of Wisdom. She said she didn't think she could quit - she had smoked for so long, and had tried so many times. We showed her some scriptures. I also shared a personal story. I hope Uncle Wade doesn't mind, but I felt very impressed to share that story with her. I didn't use names, don't worry. But she was very interested, and that story seemed to really tell her that it wasn't just three 20-year-old girls saying that He will help us; I knew someone personally that was able to quit. We are also still struggling to get her to church. But we brought a member to the lesson before the Word of Wisdom one who said he will pick her up. Hopefully this works! Also, we had FHE with her family and another family in the ward last night. They (conveniently) have children her kids' ages, so hopefully this will help them feel less shy!
We finally got to go to the temple for the first time today since we have been missionaries. We went with our district first thing this morning. It was so great! I had definitely been the most in my companionship, so I was able to help them with things. That was neat experience. We ate breakfast at the cafeteria. I know it's not a five-star restaurant, but compared to what we've been eating for the last five weeks, our district felt like we were eating like kings. I am so glad the temple is open again!! Such a great way to start the day:]
On Sunday, we realized that we have 10 more days (now it is only a week!) until the new Deutsche missionaries come. Then we have 10 days until we get our flight plans/my bithday (which would be about the best birthday ever if they were on the same day). And 10 days after that, we fly to Deutschland!!! We realized then that we can so make it out of the MTC!!
I think that is about all that has happened this week. I hope you have a great day! Make good choices!
Sister Stephanie Reid   

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