Monday, December 5, 2011

Elder Eastwood's First Email!

Hey everybody! it's your favorite son/brother, Spencer!
Everything is going very good here! I have everything packed and ready to go for tomorrow. Going to be a long day of flying! Four hour lay-over in Atlanta, Georgia will not be fun, especially followed by a 9 and a half hour flight to Brazil. And today I found out that the brazil MTC does not have AIR CONDITIONING!!!! WHAT IS THIS! WHO SIGNED ME UP FOR THIS!?!?! Oh right. I did ;)
Ummm lets see. On wednesday after you guys dropped me off, I went through the office and got my missionary tags. It's so cool to wear them! All your life you see the missionaries and you're like, "I can't wait to just wear that name tag!" It's such a nice feeling to have my name, "Elder Eastwood" on the same badge that has the Savior's name. Well, after that on Wed. we went to our first language class, which was really difficult. The teachers here are only allowed to speak in Portuguese. But we learned how to say basic greetings and that we are missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Thursday was our first full day at the MTC and let me just say it was THE LONGEST DAY OF MY LIFE. We wake up at like 6:20 and then we literally are working or studying or walking all day, for like 16 hours, until we finally get to bed around 10:30. It went by so slow. My companion and I were falling asleep in class, which was not good because the next day (friday, our third day here) we had to teach an investigator in PORTUGUESE! We barely know any of the language and they made us teach an investigator! OH MY GOSH I WAS SO SCARED! But, more on that later! I'll tell you about my companion now! His name is Elder Moses, he is from the Tri-City area in Washington State. He is pretty cool. He reminds me a lot of Taylor Almond, so that could be either good or bad. Hahaha just kidding! We are getting along really well. I will try to send pictures in another email later today!
On friday, we spent the day studying the language and making a lesson plan because at 1:00 we had to teach an investigator named Henrique together. When we first went into the room to teach him we were really nervous. All we really knew how to do was say a couple prayers, read the short phrases of the lesson plan we had written and then bear a simple testimony. before we went in, we said a prayer that henrique would understand us and that the Lord would bless us with the gift of tongues. Let me just say, the gift of tongues is real! Elder Moses and I struggled through the lesson and towards the end, we were really stressed out, the Spirit prompted me to bear my testimony. I had no idea what I was going to say, but I opened my mouth, started the first part of the testimony (Eu sou que...) and it all just came out. The Spirit was so strong. my companion later told me that I bore my testimony in almost perfect Portuguese and that I sounded just like our teacher, who has been speaking the language all her life. Henrique was visibly touched as the Spirit confirmed to him of the truthfulness of my testimony. he invited us back to teach him the next day! SO COOL!
Saturday we went back to teach Henrique and we taught him about Joseph Smith and the book of Mormon! He accepted our challenge to read it and to pray, asking God if Joseph Smith really was a prophet of God! So that is good. I actually won't get to teach him again because I'm leaving on Tuesday, but hopefully I will have the chance to teach some investigators in Brazil! The language is coming along pretty well actually, especially for only being here for five days! I can now say a whole prayer, bear an entire testimony, and have some pretty decent conversations too!
Sunday was Fast sunday, and it was really cool! It was actually kinda good to have a break from the food. Not that the food's bad. It's actually pretty okay. it just makes you really....umm....i don't know how to say it appropriately as a missionary. let's just say you a lot of noises that people normally laugh at. On Sunday we also had Mission Conference where the whole MTC Presidency speaks. The MTC President is really nice and he is really hilarious. He is very loving. he bore a powerful testimony of the Book of Mormon and then challenged us all to read from it at least 30 minutes a day! i would like to challenge everyone who reads this to read the Book of Mormon at least 30 minutes a day as well! It is an incredible book. I've realized that even more here in the MTC. It's so good. It can answer any questions you have and can comfort you in your time of need.
this morning we went to the Provo Temple, which doesn't look that great on the outside, at least I think so. It looks like a beautiful box haha. Cause all temples are beautiful! But the inside is really cool and they have this HUGE chandelier that looks like its so heavy it will fall down!
Anyway, I'm doing very good here. yes, I miss you guys a lot. I miss everyone in my family and all my friends. But whenever i get sad, I stop being sad and be awesome instead. True story. just kidding! Actually, whenever I get sad, I pray to Heavenly father for comfort and I instantly feel the holy ghost there with me. I've never felt it like that before. If you ever need comfort, the Holy Ghost will be there for you, if you ask for it. The Spirit is the most comforting thing in the world! i know that this Church is true. I know that Joseph Smith was a real prophet of God, and I especially know now that the book of Mormon is a true book. It is the word of God. I love it very much. I can't wait to get to Brazil! Everyone write me!!!!
i love you Mom! thanks for the pictures! that one of you and me looking at each other and smiling before I walked away on Wednesday was really awesome! It's my favorite picture ever!!!!
I love all you guys very much. Miss you all too! I will have a different P-Day next week, but look forward to my email and I look forward to hearing from you guys and all my friends!
Also, I will try to send some pictures later today...if I have time left....
Anyway, love you guys....
love, Elder Spencer Eastwood!

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