Monday, April 20, 2015

McKay Roe (Week 8)

[Early Sunday morning, William's parents informed the MTC of the passing of McKay Roe (William's cousin), who died on the previous evening - April 18, 2015. William sent this letter on Sunday afternoon.]

I heard about McKay this morning. They called me into the District President's office and let me know. They told me that I could email home and let you know that I'm doing okay. I feel very sad for John, Tauna, Matthew, Hannah, and Tyler. Please let them know that they are on my mind and in the prayers of my whole district. It has been weird however because I have felt almost happy for McKay.

Clockwise: John & Tauna Roe, Tyler, McKay, Hannah and Matthew
I was thinking about this year's New Years celebration up in Logan. I have this memory going through my head of McKay having a bit of a seizure. What amazed me however was how John picked him with so much love, and once McKay was in his fathers arms he seemed to feel more at peace. I remember how lovingly John held him and comforted him, bringing peace to his soul.

This is what I imagine McKay is doing right now. He has had such a hard life and now I'm sure the Lord is embracing him and that McKay finally feels at peace. I can imagine McKay running around and greeting everyone he encounters in the Spirit World and finally getting to use the voice that he has been unable to use for his whole mortal life.

It makes me so happy, because I KNOW that he is happy.

Today during Sacrament meeting our opening hymn was "Be Still My Soul". It brought me to tears because I McKay's soul can finally be at peace.

If you could would you forward this on to John and Tauna, I know that this time is probably really hard for them, but I hope that they can know that are in at least one missionary's prayers.

I love you,

Elder Everett

Thursday, April 16, 2015

11 More Days!!!! (Week 7)

So I guess I will start this one out by saying that.... WE GOT OUR TRAVEL PLANS. It was super exciting because usually they come on Fridays, but since we are going to Poland and Poland is the best mission in the world, we got them on Wednesday. I'll go ahead and write them here so you can figure out what times I can call. Tell me next week so that I can make sure we are on the same schedule as far as that goes. (All times are local, so when we are in Germany the time is German time.
My District with our travel plans!!!

LV: SLC 12:08 PM
AR: Chicago O Hare 4:15 PM
LV: Chicago O Hare 5:30 PM
AR: Munich Germany 9:50 AM
LV: Munch Germany 10:55 AM
AR: Warsaw, Poland 12:25 PM

We don't have long lay overs so there is not a ton of time for calling home :(

What's crazy is that the trip is only about 14 hours (i think). That is probably one of the fastest flights to Europe in the history of the MTC. I'm super excited to get to Poland right now.

So we learned something (maybe, not 100% sure) about our missions yesterday. Since Poland is on 9 week transfers and those transfers don't fit into 104 weeks (how long 2 years is) we are actually on a 25 month mission. Or at least our teachers served 25 months. And our little card that says we are allowed to proselyte (cant remember what it's called) says we are allowed to proselyte until April 27, not February 25 like it would normally be. So that's pretty much awesome.

Temple walk selfie
Our teacher told us about some fun Poland facts. The week before Christmas families will go to the market and buy a Carp. A living carp. Then they put it in the bath tub where they will bathe/bathe their children... while the carp is swimming around. Crazy! Then they eat it for Christmas Eve in some kind of savory jello. Ask Piotr Robakowski about this, it seems like it's a legit thing.

He also told us about a holiday in Warsaw that commemorates the Warsaw Uprising. Which, long story short was when the Poles living in Warsaw pushed the Nazis out for about 3 days because the Russians told them they would come and occupy the city if the Poles could push the Nazis out. But basically the Russians retreated after the Poles attacked so the Nazis came back and took the city. Hitler was pretty mad about this so he order the city to be razed. 80% of Warsaw was destroyed because of this, which is why almost all the buildings there are new. You can ask Piotr about this one too because he probably knows the story better than I do. But so every year in August for 1 minute the bomb sirens go off and everyone stops moving. It's pretty cool, look it up on YouTube. Our teacher told us that when he was there nobody told him about it so he got pretty freaked out when everyone stopped moving for a full minute.

We had a cool devotional on Tuesday by Elder Swick. He talked about the atonement, especially the enabling power of it. It is really amazing how the Lord can strengthen us if we just ask him to do so. I don't think that I would be moving half as fast in the language if the Lord wasn't there every step of the way helping me to learn. It is truly amazing.

I decided that I need to step up to the next level on my vocab memorization. I was just sitting at 30 words per day having a dandy time, but yesterday I brought that up to 50 words (i didn't get all of them but im working on it.) Because I know that if we push ourselves beyond where it is possible alone to achieve, that's when we can really feel the Lord helping. I have been learning a lot about faith these last couple of months (isn't that crazy, months being plural) and I know that by expanding our limits we open up room for the Lord to come in and bless us.

Funny story. I should preface this by saying that we had a skype that was amazing last week, we skyped this polish lady who enunciated and used simple language and was super easy to understand. It was amazing. But this week we got on skype and this 25 year old guy is on the other end. He starts talking, and it literally did not even sound like Polish. He was from Lodz and apparently they say vowels differently there so it sounded almost italian. I think I understood 2 words he said the whole time, and my companion probably about the same. He said "Budujemy pociagi" which is "We are building trains" I don't even understand how that fits in the conversations at all but I understood it so it made me happy.

Also funny story. I just came to the computer lab from gym and realized I forgot my tie... oops.

I think that's about everything I wanted to talk about for today, I love you family!

-Starszy Everett

P.S. Mom, Dad, Anna, John, and Lizzie, you should all write me. If you send me a letter now it will get to me in the MTC and I will be able to reply before leaving. After this week you will have to send me mail in Poland.

Poland Warsaw Mission
Swietych w Dniach Ostatnich
UL. Wiertnicza 135, i Pietro
02-952 Warszawa

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Conference Weekend (Week 6)

Well, this week was prettz fun (just realized I still had the polish keyboard on which switches the z and the y, I'm leaving it because it's pretty funny). General conference was amazing, it was great to hear from the prophet and his apostles. I really liked the talk by the French guy (not sure what his name is) but he talked about how he took his family all over Europe to see all these amazing things, but they had never seen the Eiffel Tower. I realized that I have been here in the MTC with all these opportunities to have an amazing experience that I haven't been taking full advantage of because I have been looking too much to getting out and getting to Poland.
The classic MTC map photo

We had a really cool speaker this week on Tuesday, he was the area president of the Asia North area I believe. I think his name was Elder Gong, he spoke to us about how we can teach to people without a Christian background. He shared a really cool quote by Elder Holland about how we all were together with Christ in the pre-existence, so even if someone has never heard his name in mortality, the message and name of Christ will ring true in their heads and some may even remember echos of his name.

Well funny story about polish, I've been reading the new testament (in English) and I wanted to look up the parable of the 10 virgins in polish. I was reading it and apparently in polish the word for fools is głupcy which literally means "the stupids" so in polish it is the about "the stupids" who forgot the oil in their lamp. It's is pretty funny sometimes how things translate in polish because there are a lot fewer polish words than English so one polish word will mean about 5 or more things in English.

Close-up of the classic MTC map photo...
I've been getting to know the Elders in my zone better and they are really awesome. It was funny on Wednesday because it snowed and the elder from Florida had never seen snow before in his life so he was freaking out about it.

So both Mom and Dad, both of you asked about that two brothers documentary. No I did not see it, but as a fun fact Tommy Nelson (now Elder Nelson) from my floor at BYU is their youngest brother. He just left the MTC but a couple of weeks before he left a camera crew was following him around and interviewing him so you can probably expect a short segment about him coming in the next couple of years.

I finally took that picture in front of the map, I don't have my camera right now but I will send it later (around 4) so Dad can be finally appeased.

I don't have much else to say other than that I'm having a great time, the language is coming a lot faster. I have been spending really good time in the scriptures and really feel like my relationship with my Heavenly Father is getting much stronger.

Kocham Was!

-Starszy Everett

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Made it 5 weeks!

It's been another week in the MTC, I feel like writing good emails is hard because every week is basically the same thing. I will try and include everything that was interesting however.

So our Tuesday devotional was really good this week, we had Elder and Sister Teh of the 1st quorum of the 70 come, their talks were both prime. Sister Teh gave this object lesson type thing about a the buses that they have in the Philippines, where they are from. She talked about how the driver will try and fill up the bus to the absolute maximum capacity, including people sitting on the roof, hood, handing of the back, and sitting on the floor in the middle of the bus. Then they will put other supplies and stuff hanging off the sides and on the roof. The point of the lesson was that sometimes when we feel overburdened like the buses do, we need to rely on the lord to help build us up. She said that those buses require lots of love and maintenance to run that way for a long time. We need the same thing through the atonement.

Elder Teh's talk was really good as well he talked a little about Ammon and how we can try to be better missionaries like him. We also sang Did You Think To Pray in the choir which was really good.

Our MTC Zone (I am in the back row)
We got new elders this week in the zone, they are really great. There are 3 Croatian elders and 1 Slovenian Elder. They are all really good guys and it was really fun to help them out with their first day.

Speaking of which, Starszy Little and I were called as Zone Leaders as of this week, so we got to help welcome the new elders and show them around a little bit. We also get a cell phone, so that's pretty weird. It's barely a real cell phone though because it only receives calls from the front desk, but it's weird seeing it in the MTC.

I am super grateful that I was called to Poland because they do not require visas! It was a bummer because the Bulgarian sisters who left on Monday all got reassigned to the Chicago West mission (which has the highest # of Bulgarian speakers outside of Bulgaria) hopefully it is a temporary reassignment. Luckily I do not have to worry about that at all because Poland is amazing and doesn't need any of that.

This week is a bit weird because the people that we came in with who are in 6 week languages are leaving on Monday so they all got their travel plans. Whereas we are still here for another month. As much as I love the MTC, i am extremely anxious to get to Poland and actually start doing missionary work!

Kocham was moja rodzina! (I love you my family)

-Starszy Everett