This week has gone by so fast its insane, so let's start with Thursday last week: I received a Dear Elder from my darling mother and it was written in Jane Austin-era writing and I shared it with my whole district and even my teachers. It was hysterical.
LANGUAGE STUDY FUN
panel two: *Elder Fifita bumps the door*
pannel three: *we all think someone is coming in*
the words by sister rosser= *praying*
So apparently in the Phillipines when you beckon for someone to come to you or to follow, you have to do it with your fingers downward. (Now keep in mind we are a bunch of 25-19 year olds that are removed from any form of entertainment possible so the dumbest things are hysterical.) So Our teacher stepped out for our personal study time- and during this time you study topics for the investigators you are teaching and you study the language. Well Sister Rosser was staring at her hand, wiggling her fingers in a Filipino beckoning motion and changing the rotation of how she was beckoning. There was next to no change in the way it looks but one way feels really strange compared to the other.
|Sister Rosser by her comic personality.|
So she started giggling like crazy and pretty soon Sister Banham and I were all doing the filipino beckoning motion together and giggling like we are insane when Elder Fifita bumped into the door and we all freaked out because we thought the teacher was coming back in! It was way funny.
So from left to right is Elder Fifita of California- the District leader, and his Kasama Elder Lowry of Michigan. Then Myself, Sister Rosser and Sister Banham of Utah. Elder Tibiti (tie-bus) of Kiribati and Elder Mauigoa (mow-een-go-wa) of Samoa. I feel like I have known these missionaries my whole life and I cannot begin to explain how dear they are to me.
This week I got all my immunizations out and it hurt like the dickens but if I don't get sick over in the Philippines its all good. Oh! another fun fact for all you worry warts; you are more likely to die from falling coconuts than from typhoons. Just keep that in mind. I'll be ok; I won't do anything stupid (My stake president here in the MTC had us all write it in the Missionary handbook our first day here) and I'll avoid coconut trees.
I've been so blessed with the companions (mga kasama) that I have. They are exactly what I needed in companions and I know that me being with them is by divine design.
Panel one: Sister Rosser: so what so you miss most about being home?
panel 2: *without missing a beat* instant messaging
pannel 3: hehehe....
panel 4: anooo? (translation: whaaaat?)
panel 5: you just never cease to surprise us.
One of the fun things about having Sisters and Elders in my Zone from Katibati (kitty-bus) is the fun cultural things I learn from them. Like how to catcall, for instance: "Tsss Tsss." So ever since my mga kasama and I learned how to catcall at them we have been hissing at them every time we see each other. It's so funny because they will laugh if you just look at them so catcalling will make them dissolve into puddles on the floor, they are so expressive. This one time I hissed at one of the sisters and she hadn't seen me there so she jumped a foot in the air I had scared her so bad. The MTC would be so much harder without them in our Zone, they are so fun.
So this little thought struck me while trying to focus on language class and not on the upcoming Sabbath. Compare this comic to the scene from Emperor's New Groove (If you haven't seen it shame on you its one of my utmost favorite Disney movies its so quotable.) Where Yzma and Kronk are talking after turning Emperor Kuzco into a llama. (spoilers) The Kuzco is represented by the Tagalog language, Kronk is me, and my teacher Ms Marcucci is Yzma.
EMPEROR'S NEW LANGUAGE
Panel one: "Perfect! Now take the language out of town and finish the job!"
Panel 2: ME: What about P-day? Teacher: Sister Eldredge, this is kind of important
Panel 3: ME: and ? TEacher: alright, a quick day of rest..
Panel4: THEN TAKE THE LANGUAGE OUT OF TOWN AND FINISH THE JOB!!
My favorite phrase in Tagalog this week is "Ano ba iyan?" (ah-no bah yen) which means "What the heck?" My mga kasama and I say it almost every other minute. So we were learning about the importance of proper grammar and object focus in language class this week and our teacher asked (in tagalog) "did the devil tempt the people?" and someone shouted out (in tagalog) "I tempted the devil!" It took us all a while to translate the sentence before we were all laughing like crazy. The teacher had to sit down he was laughing so hard.
Which brings me to my wonderful language mishap this week. So there is "Alam ko po na..." (ah-lah-m ko po nah) which means " I know that..." and there is "Hindi ko alam na..." (hi-n-dee ko ah-la-m nah) which means "I don't know that..." so while I was teaching one of our investigators- we are teaching two right now- instead of bearing my testimony by saying "Alam ko po na ng Espiritu Santo will basbasan pamilia tayo." I said hindi ko alam! So instead of saying "I know that the Holy Ghost will bless your family" I said "I don't know that the Holy Ghost will bless your family! My mga Kasama were both just sitting there staring at me trying to tell me telepathically that I had just said it wrong! Luckily they knew the phrase "forgive us we are still learning the language" (which is something I should learn... and they were able to save the lesson! hahaha When we got out of the lesson we all fell over laughing at how bad we had messed up. It's both nice and not so nice that our teachers play our investigators, that way we aren't messing up someone's salvation and the teachers know exactly what it is we need to learn. But is also strange because one minute they are your teacher and the next they are playing"Lani" or "Jose." I'm so blessed to have grown up in a family that taught me to laugh at my mistakes.
Whenever a guy is in the Sister's Residence Hall (for maintenance, cleaning, etc.) an announcement comes on the intercom to let us all know we have to be decent or lock our door and hide under the covers (JK)... It is the funniest thing ever.
MALE IN THE BUILDING
Panel1: *at the residence*
panel 2: MALE!! THERE IS A MALE IN THE BUILDING
panel 3: "Ano Biy an?" *translation: what the heck?"
So every new missionaries arrive at the MTC and this week I got to host the noobs!! So when I was dropped off at the MTC there was a Sister who picked me up at the curb. She helped my family take pictures and then guided me around the campus picking up my necessary books and showing where I would be eating sleeping and breathing the next 6 weeks. So I got to do that this week for two sisters, one going to Nauvoo, IL and the other going to France. It was so amazing to see their enthusiasm and remember when I was dropped off three weeks ago. Not to mention my whole District got to get out of language class! That is both awesome and not, because we now have to catch up what we missed.... so hurray for learning a new language in about 6 weeks!
I feel like I have been born again. This whole mission experience has changed the way I see everything. Back home can be compared to the pre-mortal life in heaven where we all lived as spirit children of God with Him. We are old yet so young, unable to comprehend so many things. Receiving your call is like hearing where and when in the world you will be sent into mortality. Your family knows that it will be hard, though we cannot fully comprehend, but they know that you will be strengthened and be better for having gone. Leaving for your mission is your birth into mortality. When you first get here you are disoriented and you cry easily like a baby and by the time you leave the MTC you are a youth or a young adult prepared to take on the world- or at least you think you are. You receive little notes from home and you hold them close to your heart- they are reminders of the support and love you have backing you up every step of the way. You could compare the skype sessions as to large 'aha' moments where the spirit just hits you. Your mission is your new life, you are with your Trainer and they show you that you can. Soon you are training others, and this is like parenthood. You take in new 'greenies' (missionaries that are new to the mission field) and you train and teach them best you can. Then you grow old, after training and being trained by so many and return home to your parents: this is your death, there is still so much to learn and to do. Death isn't the end, but the beginning of yet another life.
I haven't even left the MTC and I know that this is the most amazing, hard, and spiritually enriching experience. I am so blessed to have the support I do.
With all my love,
Bricken and Associates Shout out! Just letting all y'all know that I miss you and hope you are continuing to be the most amazing people ever. I'm thinking about and praying for you often!!