Tuesday, July 26, 2016

July 25, 2016

Everything is going well in the MTC. Yesterday we had a special 24th of July devotional with the Nashville Tribute Band. It was really good. I haven't actually heard much of their music, but their songs were really good. It was fun listening to them. And the MTC choir sang back up for them. Although it wasn't really back up. There were 1400-ish missionaries in the choir, so we were kinda loud. It was really cool. They do a really good job of mixing the gospel and music and inviting the spirit. It was really awesome.
Today was sad because we tried to go to the temple, but sadly it is closed. So we couldn't go. But I did see Mary and Savanna on the way back to the MTC. That was weird.
The rest of this week has been pretty good. We had to use new planners to plan this week, because the schedule is weird in the MTC. This Wednesday makes 6 weeks. That's crazy. It feels like I just came into the MTC yesterday.
I've seen Elder Fogth a couple times. He seems like he's doing well. He's awesome. It's crazy that he leaves next week (I think). We still have 4 more weeks-ish.
We had some good teaching experiences this week. It's really cool to see how far we've come in speaking Hungarian. We still can't understand most of what people say, but we can understand and communicate better than we could when we started. We also can answer questions, even if our answers are a little rough. We taught one of our "investigators" about prophets and then she wanted to know how to find what Thomas S. Monson talks about. It was interesting because all we could say was that you can use the computer and go to LDS.org. But a few weeks ago we wouldn't have even understood the question. We've been progressing and it's been awesome.
This week I've been studying D&C 121. I really like verse 41-42:
"41 No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned;
42 By kindness, and pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and without guile—"
It's so important to reach out and love each other. I've learned the importance of showing love for others and being patient and kind. Always love those around you and serve them. It's so important.
I hope you all of a good week.
Terry Elder

Monday, July 18, 2016

The First Month is Over!

THE FIRST MONTH IS OVER! We are halfway done with being in the MTC! I love it in here, but I'm looking forward to going to Hungary and teaching the people.
So, the biggest news this week is that we watched the Character of Christ for the Sunday Devotional, and afterward, Elder Bednar casually walked in. It was super surprising and awesome. He did a Q&A thingy, and it was awesome. It was so cool to see an apostle taking the time to answer individuals questions and help them out. He also talked about ministering to the one. It's so important to find the people that we can help and reach out to them.
I just found out that the world is in chaos. Pokemon go has upset the social order, there was a shooting in Dallas. Things are crazy, but the MTC is always the same. And the church is always true.
Anyways, This week has been pretty good for us. We've been learning about how to become better teachers, and the emphasis has been on asking better questions. We have to ask questions that help people think about what has been taught so that they can learn. We have to ask questions the right way too. Elder Bednar talked about how we play the "Guess what's in my head" game a lot in the church. We ask questions looking for specific answers and forcing people to try to find out what answer we want. Elder Bednar said that those kinds of questions drive the spirit away. We've been learning how to teach better, and the TRC lessons (lessons that we give to members) have been getting better. We're getting better at understanding what people say to us. We still don't know much, but it's cool to see how far we've come in only a month.
This week I learned the importance of asking for gifts for the right reasons. Elder and Sister Bednar talked about it on Sunday. Gifts of the Spirit and blessings from God come to us to help others. If we pray for something just to help ourselves, we probably won't get it. We talk about that a lot with the Gift of Tongues. We won't get that gift if we only want it so we can speak Hungarian perfectly and not get embarrassed. We only get blessed with it when we want to use it to bring others to Christ. It's so important to focus on helping others.
This week has been awesome. I hope everyone is doing well. Sometimes things are crazy, but things will be okay in the end.
-Terry Elder

Monday, July 11, 2016

Pokemon Go!!!

WHY DIDN'T ANYONE TELL ME POKEMON GO WAS COMING OUT?! I kept checking before I left, but I didn't know they had a release date. I should've watched more of E3. Everyone with a smartphone needs to play Pokemon go. Do it for me!
Apparently, I needed to ask my companions about random books they've read. In our class we have a dice that we use to practice conjugating things, and we were going to use it, so I said, "it's time to toss the dice." And then I was sad because I didn't think anyone would get the reference, but then Biesinger Elder said, "Isn't that what Mat says in the Wheel of Time?" He hasn't read the whole series, unfortunately, but he got that reference. That was the highlight of the week.
This week, we taught "Zsuzsa" who is less active. It was an interesting experience. We asked why she'd stopped coming to Church, and she said it was because she wasn't comfortable there, and she didn't have any friends there. It was a little frustrating because I understood her worries, but I couldn't respond to them because I didn't know the language. The really annoying thing was that I'd felt the same why she did, but I couldn't talk about that either. When I went to a singles ward at U of U, I didn't know anyone, and I didn't want to talk to anyone, so I wasn't comfortable and I didn't really have any friends. But despite the fact that I knew what to tell her in English, I couldn't say it in Hungarian.
Anyways, the point is, we don't know how others feel, so you should always be welcoming to others. It's so important. Reach out to those around you.
On Wednesday, our district hosted the new missionaries and I hosted Elder Earl! I didn't even know he was reporting. I've seen him a couple times since then because our classrooms are on the same floor.
The Sunday devotional was really good. The speaker focused on charity. He talked about how it was important that people feel that we love them, and that they feel the Savior's love through us. While his remarks were focused on missionaries and their investigators, it applies to everyone. We should do our best to love those around us. The way he talked about Jesus's love made me think of the Force. We should strive to let the Savior's love flow through us.
The Provo temple is open again, and it was really nice to be able to go. The temple is an awesome place, and I encourage all of you to go there often.
Anyways, I hope everyone is doing well. Love those around you, it's so important.
-Terry Elder
Ballard, Terry and the Turks:  Earl and Grover

Elder Robison.  It was really cool to see him.  It was fun because we worked together and now
we're in the MTC together.  Although he leaves soon.  And I'll be in the MTC forever
Peterson, Voigt (in the background) and Terry
Terry and Tolman
Dvorak and Terry
3 Elders 2.0: Earl, Terry, Voigt
Terry and Guevara
Grondel and Terry
Okay, Now the Zone Picture:
Elders: Elder Dvorak, Ballard Elder, Elder Tolman, Elder Fisher (Blocking most of Elder Tolman's face),
Elder Grover, Oliphant Elder, Gajdos Elder, Elder Rueger, Elder Voigt, Elder Grondel,
Elder Petersen (Facing the other way), Elder Guevara, Gentry Elder, Leavitt Elder, Me,
Sharp Elder (in front of me), Biesinger Elder, and Elder Earl.

Sorry, but I don't know all of the Sisters: Zuster Leman, Zuster Mangam(?), Zuster Smith, Beck Nővér, Zuster Lechtenberg(?), ????, Wester Nővér, Zuster De Moors, Hooper Nővér, Evans Nővér, Zuster Fordiani(?), and Day Nővér.
Elder Rueger, Elder Tolman, and Elder Voigt are on their way to Surinam right now. They left at 1:00-ish this morning.
Elder Dvorak, Elder Grondel, and Elder Guevara left for Belgium a few hours ago.
Elder Earl, Elder Grover, and Elder Petersen are leaving tomorrow.
Then we get a whole new zone, with three new Dutch districts.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

July 5, 2016

Dear Everyone,
You haven't lived until you've watched the Testaments in a room full of missionaries. That's what we did on Sunday, and it's so funny. Of course, everyone is quiet during the spiritual parts, but whenever Jacob and the girl kiss everyone freaks out. A bunch of people say "Close your eyes" and usually everyone starts laughing. There are some good parts, like when Jacob is talking to the girl and says, "An agreement of marriage would please me" and the girls response is "Is the place of records far?" It's such a funny movie. But the important message is that of Christ's ministry on the Americas. I really like how they represented it, with Christ going to Helam and healing him. It shows how much Christ cares about each of us individually.
Also, there's a really funny part when Kohor tells Jacob, "You are a specter from the Gods."

Yesterday was fast Sunday, and that was a cool experience. The missionaries headed to Albania leave tomorrow, so they all bore their testimonies. It was really good. Fast Sunday was a lot of fun. We taught priesthood, and the topic was "Faith in Jesus Christ and His atonement." It was really funny because I remember when I started teaching Primary, and I was super nervous and the lessons I prepared probably weren't very good. When I was teaching yesterday I wasn't really nervous at all. I'm really glad Bishop Maxwell called me to be a primary worker. That was a really good growing experience.
The Stadium of Fire was on Saturday, for all those who are unaware of that. Canada Day was on the First, so technically, the Stadium of Fire was closer to Canada Day than the 4th. So what was really being celebrated? Anyways, they let us stay up later to watch the fire works, but we couldn't sleep in, so it wasn't that much fun. Plus, working events kinda kills the fun of watching them later. Every time fireworks went off, I would just think of the fact that the grounds crew was going to have to clean it up. I feel bad for them. (Mom, you can let boss Mike know I was thinking of him. Or don't. He's probably forgotten about me.)

It's kinda weird that today is the 4th of July. We had a devotional about freedom on the 2nd, so we aren't doing anything patriotic today. The temple is still closed, so we don't really have that much to do.

Hungarian is still crazy. Conjugating verbs is really hard, just because there's so many different endings. The ending you use changes depending on whether you have a definite direct object or not. And then the endings vary depending on vowel harmony. Vowel harmony is this really weird thing where they have different classes of vowels, and they only want vowels of the same class in words. So you use different vowels in the ending depending on what the vowels are in the word. It's crazy. There's a lot to remember.

This was a good week. We had some solid lessons. We did our first TRC on Friday. For TRC we taught some members. They're usually returned missionaries that served in Hungary. Our first lesson went pretty well. We taught two returned missionaries, and they were really good friends, so they were really funny together. Our other lesson was a little less good, but it was still pretty fun. We've been working on not using notes (other than a lesson plan) during our lesson, so that we aren't delivering lessons that we're just reading off. It's kinda difficult, but it brings the Spirit, and the Spirit is what matters. 

We hosted the new missionaries on Wednesday, and we're hosting again this week. It's really cool.
Also, I wanted to add a spiritual thought. I was reading in Mormon during Personal study with week, In Mormon 2, it talks about how Mormon sees the people starting to sorrow and he thinks that they'll come to God, but their sorrowing was the sorrowing of the damned. And then he says, "15 And it came to pass that my sorrow did return unto me again, and I saw that the day of grace was passed with them, both temporally and spiritually; for I saw thousands of them hewn down in open rebellion against their God, and heaped up as dung upon the face of the land. And thus three hundred and forty and four years had passed away." That hit me really hard. I wonder what Mormon's life was like. He watched the people he loved turn away from everything that would help them. Him and Moroni are great examples of love. Both of them lived hard lives, surrounded by wickedness, but they kept loving the people and trying to help them. In Moroni 1, Moroni talks about how he thought he would be dead already and since he isn't, he decides to write to help the Lamanites. The Lamanites! The people that killed pretty much everyone he knows, including his dad. That's crazy. Mormon and Moroni are such great examples of love, and I invite you all to consider ways you could become more like them and love those around you.
-Terry Elder

P.S. Here's some pictures.
This is one of Elder Petersen. He's going to Turkey, and he's one of our Zone leaders right now.
Turkey's super weird and scary. They can't wear their name badges there. 
Elder Jaunay and I, with Elder Rueger kinda sticking his face in.  Elder Rueger is one
of the Dutch missionaries. I think he's going to Surinam.
 Elder Jaunay and me. He's from New Zealand. He was the Zone leader when we came in,
so he's pretty awesome. He's leaving to Albania tomorrow. 
Leavitt Elder. He's the one from Canada. He's cool. He sang "O, Canada" to us on Canada day.

This is Elder Dvorak. He's one of the Dutch missionaries.
He broke the MTC record for the mile on Friday or Saturday. 
Oliphant Elder. He hasn't seen Star Wars or Lord of the Rings. It's sad.

I took most of these pictures while walking.
I also have pictures of fireworks, but I'm not sending them. You can just think of me when you set off fireworks tonight to celebrate the 4th.