Monday, December 21, 2009

It's Christmas Time!

Christmas is this week, holy cow.  Thanksgiving was like...yesterday.  Even though I forgot all about it and we didn't do a dang thing haha.  Heck, I just got here like...yesterday.

Ok so, first thing's first.  I figured out how to call you/you to call me, I just don't know when haha.  Remember the familia Insaurralde, the story with the lunch and not feeling well and everything?  The rich family and the dad is the second counselor in the steak presidency?  We will be using their phone.  You have to call this number, exactly as it is written  (Just like in America, the "-" are unimportant)

if that doesn't work

Just dial it like that, and it should work fine.  We don't know if we're going to call on the 24th or 25th, so what's gonna happen is I'll call you when we find out and let you know at what time to call that number.  All else fails, I know how to call you so I'll just call you and it will be super expensive for both of us haha.  If I were you, I'd buy a long-distance card so its cheap for you.

Ok, the story that I didn't have time to tell last week.  We contacted this lady Ramona Lopez on the 27th of November.  Last week, we went to look for her house.  These are the directions she told us "Enter by the Church of Cristo Rey, there are 2 houses made of wood next to each other.  Mine is the one with the 3 nisperos (a nispero is a type of tree)".  So we went looking, and we found the church, but not her house.  We stopped to ask a family who was sitting outside if they knew Ramona and could direct us to her house (which is usual, we always do that, people are friendly and help us out).  They started laughing, and we were like uhh...what's so funny?  One of the ladies was Ramona's daughter, and her house was right on the street we were on.  Coincidence, huh?  Oh it gets better lol.  They started asking all these questions like when did you talk to here, where did you find her, what did she tell you, all this stuff.  And we were really confused, because we were just trying to find her house and didn't understand why they were so weird about it.  We told her we were missionaries and had contacted her in the street not too far from this house, and she gave us these directions after we shared a message about the family.  They told us that Ramona was a member of our church.  Then they told us that Ramona was dead.  Ummm...come again please?  No way did we talk to a dead lady, but the house matched the description perfectly.  It was the house made of wood by the Church of Cristo Rey with the 3 nisperos, and these people were her family.  What are the chances of there being another Ramona Lopez in that same area with that same house description?  We couldn't find another house like it.  They showed us a picture of Ramona, but it had been 3 weeks, and we visit so many people and only contacted her for a minute we couldn't remember.  I still don't know what to make of it.  Maybe it was somebody else giving us this family's address and just using Ramona's name?  Maybe there really is by some chance another Ramona Lopez in the area?  Maybe we talked to a dead lady, I dunno.  Really weird though.  And really cool.

Anyway, no time this week for pictures, I'm already late.  Blah.  Sorry, next week for sure!  Even if I don't have time for a letter to go with it, I'll send pictures.  Love and miss you all!  Can't wait to talk to you!  Merry Christmas!

-Elder Moore

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Miracles of My Mission

Ok so, you might not have noticed, but you didnt get an email on Monday lol.  Nothing happened, Im totally fine, they just changed our Pday for this week.  We had changes on Wednesday, so if you got transferred to a different area, they moved our Pdays to today so we could buy food in the new area and stuff.  Sorry mom, I know you were worried all week haha.  All is well :).  With changes, nothing happened with Elder Ganga and I.  We`re both still here, neither of us got transferred.  The way transfers work is that you find out that morning whether or not you`ll be leaving.  If you are, you take a bus to Asunción and then find out where you`ll be going, and then you go haha.  One elder in our district finished his mission so he went home yesterday and one other got transferred to a new area.

We`ll have our next Pday on Monday as usual, so don`t fret haha.  On Monday, I`ll tell you whats going on with being able to call home and how we`re going to do it.  I`m way excited for that!

Ok, so I call this edition of my weekly newsletter "Miracles of My Mission" because theres some pretty cool stuff that has happened.

Monday, December 7, 2009

I Touched a Monkey yesterday!

Hey everybody!

How is everyone doing?  Ugh, we are at a different internet place than we usually go to, and on this one you cant change the keyboard to English.  Drats.

Its December already, holy smokes.  Time goes crazy fast, Ive been here for over a month already.  Sheesh!  And what else is cool that I figured out is that by the time my birthday comes around, Ill have 6 months of my mission under my belt!  How cool is that?

So I got 2 sets of Dear Elders since the last email.  How it works is that we get our mail once a week through a service called the encomienda - basically mail goes to the mission office, and they get it to us every week.  Usually we get our mail during district meeting on Tuesdays.  Thats what happened last week.  But this week, because Elder Ganga is the district leader, sometimes he gets to pick it up a day or 2 earlier, so we got the mail yesterday.  I have Dear Elders from about November 17/18th - 20th and About the 24th or so - 29th.  The first ones dont have the date, so I cant be sure how early it was written.  But thank you all sooo much for keeping them coming.  I really love getting them, thank you thank you thank you!  Ill do my best to answer as much of them as I can here, but theres like 7 pages so...hah.

Monday, November 30, 2009

I'm about as Dark as a Paraguayan!

Hey everyone!  How's it going?  Time again for a weekly news bulletin.  Can you believe it's been a month already that I've been in Paraguay?  What definitely doesn't feel like it.  As of Wednesday, I'll have 3 months of my mission under my belt.  Crazyyyyyy.

Anywho, I get to call home this month!  Wahoo!  Christmas day we get to talk for 30 or 40 minutes, I'm super stoked for that.  I don't know if you have to call me, or if I call you, or how it works.  I'll find out and be sure to let you know before-hand so we can have something set for sure.

Ok, so every month we take out our 750,000 Guaranies for money here.  Today is technically still November, but we got to take it out today.  Guess how much money I had left over from last month?  5,000 Gs, which is about a dollar in America hahah.  But it's alright, because I shouldn't ever be that low again.  For one, I only got to take out 600,000 the first month (who knows why) so I was already short.  And also, Elder Ganga ran out of money this month about the beginning of last week (he had to buy stuff for our apartment), so I was paying for all the bus rides instead of splitting them with him.  Ended up being an extra expense of about 35,000 Gs.  So no need to worry about my money situation, all is well.

If you didn't guess already, I'm about as dark as a Paraguayan now from the sun lol.  Well, kinda.  My arms below my sleeves and my face are dark.  But without a shirt, I'm still white as a ghost hahah.  I took a picture of the difference, it's amazing.  I'll be sure to send it when I get my camera cord.

Monday, November 23, 2009

I found Chicken Nuggets & Peanut Butter - I'm Saved!!

Hello all!

Thank goodness I figured out how to change the keyboard settings to English, I was tired of typing with the Spanish keyboard layout, holy smokes.

First thing is first - I have fantastic news (probably the greatest news I could ever think of): I found chicken nuggets at the store last week.  Wooo boy!!  Let me tell you, they were delicious.  I don't think chicken nuggets have ever tasted so good.  This week, I also found peanut butter!!  I'm saved!  I bought that with some bread, so I'm going to eat tons of peanut butter sandwiches.  Score.  They have JIF, like good ol' American JIF.  But they also have Paraguayan peanut butter which oddly enough was designed/created at the University of Pennsylvania.  The other Elders told me it was better, so I got that today.  Can't wait to try it when I get home haha.  Peanut butter and chicken nuggets!  I'm getting more accustomed to the food now too, so I'm not sick anymore and can actually eat a meal without wanting to throw up.  Can't say I quite ENJOY it yet, but it's definitely manageable.

So we had a baptism this past Saturday, but it was an 8 year old girl whose parents are both members so it doesn't really count haha.  We're teaching a family and one lady right now who are progressing the most.  They love having us over, they read the Book of Mormon and pray and everything, but we can't get them to come to church!  The family (Johana, Nestor, and their kids Jessica-10, Brisa-7, and Jenni-2) came to church 2 weeks ago and loved it.  Last week some of Nestor's friends showed up drunk at like 7:30am so they couldn't come, and this week we don't know what happened.  They said we could come get them before church like we did 2 weeks ago, and when we went they didn't answer.  Sleeping?  Ditching?  I dunno.  And the lady who is progressing, Lucia, she just won't come.  She likes talking to us and stuff, but I don't know what her deal is.  We always have people to teach and never have to just go out knocking on doors (or clapping behind fences) looking for people, but the people here don't like committments.  A bit lazy, but ah well.

Monday, November 16, 2009

What the Heck kind of Butterfly is that?

Hello everyone!

First things first, Im getting your DearElders within a week or 2, so that is probably the best way to communicate with me.  We only have an hour per day to read all our emails (which we get 3 from the mission), write to the mission president, and write home, so DearElders seem to be best.  Ive gotten a few from you mom and dad and I got one from Katie so far too.  Ill be able to respond via email within a week or 2, depending on when the mail comes.

The other Elders were telling me about this package service that the Post Office does now, I wish I had known about it and been able to tell you before you mailed me the stuff.  Its this box you get, and you stuff as much as you can into it and send it for a flat rate, regardless of what or how much is in it.  Just pack it full and youll pay the same rate every time.  Check that out for next time.  And I only get packages every 6 weeks, so it wont be until next change that you can get pictures when I have my cord.  Send food if youre going to send anything hahah.

Another week down.  Whew.  Its been really difficult this week.  Besides being physically exhausted and all the walking we do, this past week was pretty rough on me.  I started getting really homesick Monday or Tuesday.  Its hard, I really miss you guys.  Im really trying, its just difficult and time passes so slow here for me.  I know that the more I get lost in the work and focus on the people and what Im doing, time will go much faster and Ill be happier, but its hard when you dont understand what the work is saying!  Im workin on the Spanish, and I know it will get better with time, its just hard to know what to do until then, yenno?  It will get better eventually, no need to worry.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Hello Paraguay!

Whoa, these Spanish keyboards are weird...

I made it!  First thing's first, I'll tell you about when I got here.  We arrived with President and Sister Callan waiting for us.  They are super nice, we love them.  We loaded our luggage and took a picture with all of us and the Callans outside the airport and then went to the mission home.  (Driving here pretty much means you have a death wish, by the way).  When we got there at about 7:30 or so, everyone introduced themselves and then they had food waiting for us - a chicken with a sauce (called milanaze) and mashed potatoes.  Pretty darn good, I must say.  Then we got to watch a baptism which was sweet.  Then back to the main room for some presentations and information.  We slept in a hotel that night, and then came back to the mission home for one more presentation.  My package in the brown box was waiting for me, thank you so much!  It's saved me.  Then we met our trainers!  My companion is Elder Ganga, I'll tell about him later.  Then we found out where we were going, got to email you, and took the 7 hour bus ride here.

We are in a place called Ciudad de Este, or East City.  You should look it up on GoogleEarth or find it on a map of Paraguay sometime.  It´s pretty neat.  A weird place though, huuuuge open fields.  It´s like if a field had a field, we would aspire to be that.  Serious open country, not a jungle like I thought it would be.  The houses are like Belize style, all run down (according to American standards).  This place is gigantic.  There are small clusters of 3/4 houses, and then at least 100 yards between houses.  It's ridiculous.  Everything here is dirt too, no paved roads except the main road back to Asuncion and 3/4 rock-paved roads.  It rains here (what the heck?) so when it does, your shoes sink halfway down in the mud.  I've accepted that NOTHING will stay clean here hahah.  I also think I've found out where flies come from.  Any time you see a fly, know that it's got a family of 50 here in Paraguay lol.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

My last MTC email

Well, its my last week in the MTC!  Time has just blazed by.

I got my debit card, thank you so much!  The Hermanas said that my old card should still work until it expires.  I'll try them both and see what happens.  Thanks again.  I didn't get the Halloween package yet, so I don't know if I'll get it before I leave?  I hope so.  I also loved the pictures from last week!  I'm so glad I got them, send me pictures any time.  I was starting to forget what you guys looked like!  Haha kidding.

I got my travel plans last friday!  We're flying Delta, bleh.  They charge $50 for a second bag regardless of weight, its like $150 bucks for overweight luggage, and I only get one carry-on I beleive.  Not cool, Delta.  Not cool.  Anyway, here it is!
Salt Lake -> Atlanta:  8:30am - 2:13pm
Atlanta -> Buenos Aires, Argentina:  6:40pm - 7:50am
Buenos Aires -> Asuncion:  9:40am - 10:20am
Yes we have a 4 hour layover in Atlanta and yes that's a 13 hour flight haha.  Though I'm not sure if they take into account the time differences?  Because Asuncion is like 3 or 4 hours ahead of Provo, so it may only be 10 hours.  No idea.  But yeah, so we leave the MTC at 5:00am so if we have time after we check in and everything before our first flight I'll definitely call you.  And expect a call for sure anywhere between 2:30 and 6:00 or so, sorry I can't be more specific.  I'm excited to get to talk to you though!!  Also, I'm the travel leader for the 9 of us going to Paraguay.  Apparently somebody is foolish enough to trust me with getting 9 people to Paraguay in one piece lol.  Its not really any extra responsibility per se, I just make sure everybody is here and accounted for and have all the numbers to call and information for what to do should anything go wrong.  Pretty cool I guess.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

2 more weeks!

Oh man, I just looked at all your pictures you sent me.  I miss you guys so much!  Man oh man, it was good to see you guys.  I'm so glad you had fun in Colorado.  Good job with that tri-pod pop!  How come you guys went to Colorado anyway?  Just a little get-away?  I'm glad you enjoyed it.  Beckenridge sounds beautiful, we'll be sure to make a trip when I get home.  I miss you guys so much, I love you.

Thanks for Dr. Stacey's address!  I'll be sure to write them sometime.  Thanks for renewing my debit card too (it's good to be me, isn't it Dad?) lol.  By the way Nana, "lol" just means like I'm laughing or I thought something was funny.  I'll see about getting my driving record.  We don't have internet access except for email and to look up talks and things, but I know they make exceptions for specific things.  I'll see what I can do.

We get our travel plans today!!  When we get the mail after dinner, we'll have all our flight itineraries and stuff.  I am so excited, you have no idea.  I'll be sure to write you an extra letter so you can know what's going on and tell whoever wants to know lol.  It won't be an email though, just a letter so you'll get it in a few days.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Week 6 ...already?

Holy cow, I can't believe that as of this coming Monday, I have 2 weeks and then I'm off to Paraguay!  That is so crazy.  I'm really excited to go!  I can't wait to get there.

It was pretty funny, last week we had chicken nuggets for lunch.  I about had a heart attack when I saw the menu before I walked in, and about had another one after I was done eating.  I ate 6 plates of those bad boys, probably about 45 chicken nuggets.  Some things never change I guess.  I gained 3 pounds that day haha, but I burned it all off at gym.

I think I need you to send me a few things.  I'm pretty sure I'll need my driving record?  I don't know.  If I do have a car there (which I will should I have certain assignments) I'll need my license and driving record.  How do I go about renewing my driver's licence if I'm...out of the country?  Haha.  Same thing with my debit card?  Could you also send me Dr. Stacey's address por favor so I can write to them and send them a picture or something?  Thanks a bunch, you guys help me out beyond belief.

I wish I could play fantasy football with you guys this season.  I'll show you how it's done when I get home!  Oh, and GO UNR!!

Tell Bryce I said congrats on the appointment to start his papers!!  I don't have time today, but I will make it a point to write him before I leave the MTC.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Week 5 at the MTC

Hey all!

Thanks for always sending the letters and Dear Elders, I love them.  Keep them coming when you have time!  Thanks for sending my pouch service address also!

Hey Pop - could you send me the addresses of President Teshima and Bishop Leavitt so I can write them please?  Thanks a bunch man.  I had President Teshima's address in my scripture case, but I misplaced it and can't find it now.  You also sent me a Dear Elder yesterday, but you put it in Hermana Denker's name hahah.  She opened it and was like "uhh...Elder Moore?  I think this is for you haha" it was funny.  She is doing better, getting some letters now I think.  She appreciates your sending her letters.

Conference was great!  I really loved it.  We all just went into the gym and they put it on the huge projectors and tvs.  It would have been cool to shuttle down to SLC to see it, but that's an extra 2,104 seats that  I don't think the conference center can hold haha.  My favorites were by Elder Scott who talked about personal revelation and Elder Holland who talked about the Book of Mormon.  He is such a stud, Elder Holland.  We all love him here.  President Uchtdorf also gave excellent talks, I really love hearing him too.  Did you finish all the sessions?  If not and they're not recorded, all the sessions can be watched on if you just search the conference talks.  They're great, anyone who hasn't seen them should really watch.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Week 4 at the MTC

Wow, time flies here.  I think I say that every week lol.

It has been a buuuuuusy week.  We go to the TRC each week (the thing where members pose as investigators for us), and usually we do 15 minutes of some scenario in Spanish (this week it was helping somebody move, last week it was doing door to door contacts, etc) and then we teach in English for 35 minutes.  Well next Tuesday starts it ALL in Spanish!  I'm about to explode haha.  Keep working on that Spanish, Dad!

This week we've upped our Spanish-only speaking to all breakfasts and lunches, all meals on Mondays Wednesdays and Saturdays, and this Friday we're speaking ALL SPANISH ALL DAY.  Holy moly, I'm gonna go crazy haha.  We're actually pretty good for only being here 4 weeks.  It's not like nobody talks or anything, it's neat.  But this week is so so much, we're working really hard lol.  I enjoy the challenge.

Good news though (if it's true).  When I leave for Paraguay, I get to call home when I'm at the airport!  How awesome is that?!  I'll make sure to let you know of my flight plans and when I'll be at the airport so you make sure you're not busy.  Even if you're not home, I know your cell numbers still so I'll call your cell phones.  Cool, huh?!

I wrote some goals down for my mission and after my mission this week.  Just some of the things I want to do while I'm here and for when I get home.  Hopefully writing them down will give me some direction in getting them done!

This week I was released as District Leader.  I kinda yelled at one of the Elders in my district, and they said that wasn't how a DL should act.  Ok that's a lie, I'm totally kidding hahah.  We're just on a 3 week rotation, so every district switches DLs after 3 weeks.  Kinda a bummer, but it's nice to be able to have study time instead of going to meetings.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Week 3 at the MTC

Hey all!

Wow, 3 weeks down!  It feels like 3 days.  Does that mean that 104 weeks will feel like 104 days??  Hmm...

Everything is well here.  Just pluggin along, learning more and more every day.  Jeff I'll make time to write you your own email next week, but I'm short on time this week.  Don't worry, it will happen!

Mom and Dad

Can you send me more labels with my address on them?  I only have 4 left after today!  I'm doing some serious writing haha.  Lots of people to talk to!  I got my raincoat, thanks for calling them.  I also got your package with my jeans, paraguay shirt, and spanish hymn book.  Thanks a bunch, I really appreciate everything you guys are doing, really.  And the See's candy is already half gone!  Hehe.

Will you also send me my Paraguay addresses so I have them to give to my friends here?  Thanks!

I'm good with the money situation.  Still have quite a bit of cash, we get 50% off here at the bookstore, so everything is really cheap.  The most expensive thing I've had to buy was a watch, because mine broke, but that's it.

Papa Bear, good try with that Spanish!  You were close.  "Creo" means "I believe", "Yo sé que" means "I know that", so say you know it instead of believe it!  Here's what you were trying to say:  Hola, me lammo Danny Moore.  Yo se que Jesucristo nos ama.  l sufrió para nosotros y quitó nuestros pecados.  ¿Le gustaría más acerca de la Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Últimos Días?"  Close though!

We're speaking more and more Spanish outside of class now.  Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays, we're not allowed to speak English during meal times.  Everyday at breakfast we speak Spanish.  We always sing in Spanish, and whoever gives the spiritual thought before class starts has to start doing it in Spanish now.  It's a lot to handle, but the more we hear and speak it the faster we'll learn it.

My companion and I are getting really good at teaching the lessons.  In the TE where we teach a teacher who acts like a progressing investigator, he said we taught him one of the best first lessons he's heard in a long time.  We just taught him the plan of salvation 2 days ago, and he said he actually wished we would have committed him to baptism because he would have said yes.  So I guess we're doing well haha.  He tries to play out different scenarios that we'll encounter in the field, like last time he started asking all these random questions in the beginning and getting off topic to see if we could focus him back on the lesson we were supposed to teach.  When he said "Let's look up your last name in the index!" we were pretty sure we knew what he was doing haha.  It's really weird, this John Arpeggio character that he made up is really real to us.  Its incredible how you can have such love for a made up character and want him to know the Gospel even in a simulated situation with a made up person who has a made up life.  I think it's because he might be fake, but his problems are real problems people have and we really have come to love that character.  It's amazing.

They're teaching us a lot of things on how to improve our lessons.  We're learning to ask a lot of questions, it's much more like having a conversation rather than teaching somebody about Jesus Christ.  We learn to ask them about themselves before we start and pick up on little tid bits of information about them to really discern what their concerns and needs are, and we adapt the lesson to their needs as we go.  One time, we entirely changed the lesson on the fly because we got a question out of left field and what we had planned to say just wouldn't have done any good.  We're taught "Don't teach the lessons, teach the investigator".

Where's Brother El Halta moving to?  Tell him that I wish him and his family luck!  And tell Rick that I'm sad I'll be missing the day they ordain a Bishop Rick.  Hehe.  We have an Elder in our district named Elder Bishop, so if he's ever called to be a bishop, he'll be Bishop Bishop.  Kinda funny.

My district is doing great though!!  We all get along sooo well now.  People think we're weird because we're always laughing at lunch and stuff.  We're like family out here.  My companion wasn't doing so well though, but he's doing better now.  He has a girl at home he misses, so that's something we talk about a lot and kinda have in common.  I gave him lots of advice about that.  All is well though, we all love each other so it's a blast.

Again, thanks so so much for all the Dear Elders everyone is sending.  They're one of the best parts of my day, I love hearing from everyone.  Sorry I can't respond to everything everyone says in them (doing the Lord's work is a busy job!) but I try my best.  Please please keep them coming, I love them.

That's all for this week.  Love and miss you all so much!  Hasta luego!

Elder Moore

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Week 2 at the MTC

Hello all!
> So much to talk about, so little time!!  First thing's first, happy birthday B-ryce!  Hope it was a good one.  Sorry I didn't get to write ya, this missionary business is busy!  But I do have a quote for you to make up for it by Elder Dallin H Oaks about missionary work: "We invite all to come unto Christ by repentance and baptism and confirmation in order to open the doors of the celestial kingdom to the sons and daughters of God.  No one else can do this."  Get excited bud!
> Chief:  Thanks for the  scriptures and encouragement!  I have some scriptures for you in return.  Helaman 5:12, Alma 26:10-12, 2 Nephi 4:19, 2 Nephi 9:39.  It was hard to pick just 4, but there ya have it!  Love and miss my second family.
> Thanks to everyone who has sent me letters and Dear Elders, and just words of encouragement!  Sister Hunt and family, Oma and Opa, everyone else, I'll get to writing you at some point, I promise!  I'm a busy boy, but you'll all get your letters!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Hello from Tim at the MTC

     Sept 10, 2009
Hey Friends and Family!!
We finally got a letter from Tim and thought that we would send it on to you. We sure were glad to hear from him! You can see by the letter why we are so proud of him and how important going on a mission was to him. We love you all and will forward more as we get them.

Danny and Tracy
Hey everyone!

Sorry it's taken so long for you guys to hear from me.  We only get to email/write on our P-days (Thursdays) and we didn't get one last week.

Wow, where to even begin!  First of all, thank you soooo so much for all the Dear Elders you're sending.  I really love them and they help me out a lot. Please keep sending them, I love getting mail.  I leave for Paraguay on November 2.  I'm released on September 6, 2011.  Start counting down!

The first day here was so insane.  I checked in, verified my information, and got my packet (my room key, fancy shmancy nametag, etc).  Then we dropped my stuff off in my room and went to my classroom.  We will have the same classroom with the same 2 teachers and same 12 missionaries with me the whole time I'm here.  The 12 of us are called a "district", and we're district E in branch 50 (doesn't mean anything, it's just for organizational purposes).  We have 4 awesome Sister missionaries in our district, which apparently is uncommon.  In the classroom, I met my companion, Elder Short.
He is a great Elder (we call everyone Elder/Sister here, they told us that the "guys" and "dudes" are all back home dating our girlfriends hahah). He's from Toledo, Ohio, and we're getting along great!  Then we went to orientation where the MTC presidency talked to us and we got aquainted.

Thursday morning when we had class like usual, we opened with a prayer and our teacher said "Well I hope you all enjoyed that prayer, because it's the last one any of you will be saying in English for the next 2 years".  I'm
sorry, I don't think I heard you correctly, can you repeat that?  I could have sworn you said we will be praying in Spanish by tonight...How crazy, right?!  As crazy as that sounds, by that night and ever since then we have all been saying our prayers in Spanish.  That's about the rate at which we have been learning Spanish.  Last Sunday was fast Sunday, and from the time I got here until then, I was already able to bear my testimony in Spanish in sacrament meeting (which is here in the MTC).  The Spirit is so strong here, we are all truly blessed with the gift on tongues in every way possible.

I really love it here, but I'm so busy!  We're up at 6:30 every morning, have to be in class by 7, have a good 3 hours of class each day, and at LEAST 3 hours of study time every day.  Holy smokes.  But I'm doing alright, the Lord takes care of His missionaries.  Tuesdays are busy days for us.  We have a workshop called the TRC (Training Resource Center) every Tuesday. Members in the area volunteer to come in and be trained to act as investigators, and we go contact them (in Spanish) and teach them Lesson 1 (not yet in Spanish).  Each time the scenario is different - for example, this week we acted like we were contacting people in a park and went to their house to teach them later, and the volunteers are all given back stories and specific doubts to express and things, so it's like really being in the mission field.  It's incredibly helpful.  And then at night, we have devotional where either members of the Quorum of the 12 come and talk to us, or some other well-known person.  This week was President Hinckley's son, Richard Hinckley, and his wife.  What a marvelous experience!  They are so smart and such spiritual people, it was a treat to hear from them.

The lessons we're learning to teach are definitely NOT memorizing doctrines and reciting talking points to investigators.  The first lesson is about the Restoration and the Joseph Smith story.  But we are taught to make it very personal to the invesigators.  We ask them questions, we find out about their lives so we can better tend to their needs and answer their questions, we learn techniques on how to address certain questions, and so much more.
It's so in-depth, it's ridiculous.  Much more than I thought it would be, but I like it much better this way.  It helps us to really get to know our investigators and connect with their lives, so we truly will love them and want to help them which is probably the number 1 rule of missionary work. Love the people you teach.

On Sunday, I was assigned to be district leader!  Assigned, not called, because we already have callings - a missionary.  But it is an excellent opportunity to serve the 12 missionaries in my district!  I meet with the branch presidency once a week, who are all so nice.  I get specific information and the district comes to me if they have any questions, I'm the first resource (besides the Lord, of course) for resolving disputes between companions, and things like that.  I really love it, except it's hard when
you have to tell somebody to stay on task or something, because I love my district so much it's hard to be the bad guy.  (Now I know what it feels like to be a dad!  or...kinda.  haha).

Man, there is so much to tell!  I just love it here in the MTC and am learning a ridiculous amount.  Today we're doing laundry and get to kinda relax and hang out a bit, which is a nice break.  And we get to go to the temple today, which I am WAY excited for.  I've been dying to go.  We go every Thursday at 2:30.

Well I only have 2 minutes left, so I gotta go.  We get half an hour to email so everybody gets a turn.  But just know that I'm doing quite well, loving it here, learning so much, and enjoying the presence of the Spirit as strongly as it is here.  Can't wait to get out in the field, and I'll write you guys next week!  Keep the letters coming, please please please, I love hearing from everybody.  I love you all and can't wait to see you again!

Elder Moore

P.S.  Please don't forget to forward this to everyone, including Katie :]

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Your Missionary Has Arrived!!

Dear family of Timothy Jerry Moore,
> We are pleased to inform you that your missionary has been safely checked in at the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah.  We thank you for supporting your missionary and know that your family will be blessed as a result.
> Your missionary's mailing address while at the MTC is:
> Timothy Jerry Moore
> MTC Mailbox # 100
> PAR-ASU 1102
> 2005 N 900 E
> Provo, UT 84604-1793