so yet another exciting week here at the mtc...not really

about the only exciting thing was we started teaching lesson 1 sa tagalog. that was an interesting experience to say the least. its very frustrating not being able to say what you really want to say when you want to say it. the trc this last week....my mind has never been so blank. but enough about that, so ive been here for 6 weeks and would really like to get either myself or my companion transfered, but thats not going to happen so thats my bit on complaining about my companion. so ive been asked what my weekly schedule is so since this week is a light week i'll tell you about it. so monday is p-day and we go to the temple in the morning, except this morning cause its closed. after that i usually print off emails so i can read them and not waste email writing time. we head back to the room and change and start writing letters and whatnot. sorry i didnt write anyone last week, i was not feeling good. but anyway we then go get a sack lunch cause we cant go into 1m in pday clothes. then we come back and we write some more and then go do laundry around one. there i write my email normally and more letters. after laundry there usually isnt to much time but it gets filled with letters and whatever else needs doing. we get dressed and go to dinner. after dinner we have class which includes the teach-o-rama where we teach other memebers of the zone. btw people that have sent me packages my roommates and rest of the zone love you. anyway thats pretty much monday. tuesday we have bfast, gym, personal study, comp study, and some missionary determined time before lunch. after lunch we go to the refferal center and make outbound calls and participate with people in online chats about the gospel, pretty good times. we come back from the rc and actually have class then dinner. after dinner we have some mdt and missionary directed language study, and then devo. after devo we have devo review, thats pretty much tuesday. wednesday we have service after bfast. then class. then lunch, gym, ps, cs, mdt, dinner, class, bed. thursday has the same basic schedule as every other day some variance of class or gym, mdt, ps, and cs and of course the trc. friday everyone is dead. we have weekly planning, a large group meeting, lunch class, ps, cs, mdt, dinner, more class. thats pretty much friday. saturady we have the marathon class from bfast to lunch, its a killer. then ps, cs, gym, dinner, more class, mdls, mdt and a lot of other brain frying activities. sunday is amazing cause its the only day when i can take a nap and i take full advantage of it. thats pretty much my week, its crammed full. any questions? well hope everyone is having a good week.
elder b


Yeah... the flu...good times

this week has been an enjoyable on account of me getting the flu on thursday. so heres the story....i went to class after lunch and it just wasnt happening for me that day. i was really hot and sweaty and tired. about two three hours into it my teacher apears infront of my face and askes me what she could help with and i said i dont know but i think im running a fever. she felt my forehead compared it with my companions and back again. one of the teachers in the tag department was in the room and he felt my temp too. sis olsen was like elder i think you should go to the health clinic. so i did. come to find out i had a fever of 101.7. it was good times. so the doctor tells me i have to go to bed, which i was kind of upset about cause we were going to teach that night; but he put the hammer down. so he sent me off with some gatorade and i went off to sleep....for the next 12 hours ish. so friday was ok, i drank three big glasses of gatorade and was fine. saturday was a different story. so saturday afternoon gillett and sister smyth and i went to teach at which point i started some pretty good chills. some of the other elders could see i was shaking and kept encouraging me to go back to the room and sleeep , but i kept fighting it. so we went to dinner and came back to class and were reading ang aklat ni mormon sa tagalog and i swear i was going through menopause. i liked to jump between fever and chills, oh it was good times. so i finally decided after reading that i couldnt take it anymore. so i had my district give me a blessing and i went off to bed, but i didnt sleep. i tried for several hours but it just didnt happen so it was just me at kasama ko chillin in the residense hall by ourselves. never more in my life have i wanted sportcenter or any type of tv. but we surrvived, everyone else came back around 930 so it was ok. sunday i was just cold all day even in my suit jacket. i went to the front desk to talk to the dr on call but he was in sacrament meeting so he couldnt be desturbed. so i went and took a nap and took and even longer one after sacrament meeting. when i woke up from that one i threw up in the drinking fountain while takeing ibprofen like 6 times. but anyway thats the interesting stuff. were teaching sa tagalog this week so pray for me.
love always,
Elder b
Thanks everyone for the packages, but i think im all cookied out so please send goldfish instead of cookies, i cant eat anymore cookies.


another week at the mtc

so first of all thanks for all the notes of encouragement, that really helped a lot. also thanks for the increase of mail this week, its a real boost in moral so keep sending more. not a whole lot to report this week, the language is still a struggle and probably will be for quite some time, but i keep trying. i continue to progress in my teaching sa ingles, but am not looking forward to next week cause we're teaching sa tagalog. its going to be an interesting experience nonetheless. about the only interesting thing that happened this week was gillett and i got our solo sister from our district to teach with us. im really excitied aout it, its going to be good for both her and us. she's very organized and likes to compartmentalize the lesson, which gillett and i don't do. we just kinda go with what the spirit tells us to do and what the investigator wants to know. we dont have the lesson divided up at all, we just double testify and teach the principles. but sister smyth is freaking amazing! she bore her testimony while we were teaching and it just about knocked me off my chair it was so powerful. but other than that i really dont have much to report. the language keeps coming, teaching happens and thats about it. its pretty boring doing the same thing everyday. hope all is well.
love always,
elder b


May 5, 2008

Hello so this past week was not the best week ever. it was a serious trail of my faith. so I attribute it to first being sick, second being incredibly frustrated, and third the lack of mail (my not so subtle hint that I didn't get any mail last week). Dearelder.com delivers same or next day. ok that's my bit about not getting mail. anyway so this week hindi mabuti (no good). so this week I was sick thus meaning that I was really tired and studying and staying awake and everything became that much harder. and it didn't help that I just couldn't do nothing cause they've got us scheduled from sun up to sun down. so this whole crappy week came to a culmination of crappiness on Thursday night. so we had been preparing for the trc all week, which was getting to know someone, sharing a short message, and setting up a return appointment all in tagalog. I could say what I had memorized and that's about it. if they asked me a question that I didn't know all I could do was stare at them like an idiot. 15 minutes has never felt like such an eternity and not only did I have to do that once, but twice. so me and my kasama (comp) came back into the central meeting room after we tried talking to them and one of the teachers that watched us started to talk to us and I just lost it. I have never been so frustrated. it was so hard and I just didn't know what to do. so I was crying, but still had to compose myself and go teach the first lesson, which went fine and I felt the spirit and taught well. but its just hard. hopefully it'll be better this week. its just hard cause they're cramming this all down my throught and I just cant swallow it. I don't know how im going to do it. I leave for the Philippines in 6 week! its just hard, but I just get up everyday and keep trying. I know that whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies so im trying to do everything that I can to do my best. so its just been a really hard week. I think that this week Heavenly Father decided to test my faith. I have never felt so much like giving up and going home, but im still here doing what I need to do. keep praying for me, I really need it. and write me some mail!!!!!!!!! its kind of a big deal. granted I can write back till Monday, but I still like getting mail.
love you all. Elder B

April 28, 2008

magandang hopon! from the MTC!!!
Good afternoon from the MTC. This week, like last, has been a blur. I'll try to get you caught up on the interesting stuff cause I dont have much time. Tuesday we got instruction for our white bag test which only philippines missionaries get to take. I'll tell you the full details about the test at the very bottom of this email if you would like, but be warned it is kinda disgusting. but anywho, this week has been kind of hard. I've really had a hard time being patient with elder gillett. sometimes im pretty sure he has diarrea of the mouth and says whatever pops into his head, its really annoying. but im working on it, although its not coming very quickly. but thats about it for the comp, he's just annoying a far share of the time so I have to adapt and overcome. Tagalog is hard. We had to speak to some volunteers in the TEC (teacher eval. center) and we'd ask questions and they'd respond and all I could do was stare at them slack jawed, its pretty hard. but its coming shortly but surely. not much else to report. I love to get mail so keep it coming :). I love you all. Elder B

(Scroll down for White Bag test details, be warned it is disgusting)

So the white bag test is required by the Philippino government for all missionaries coming into the country. basically this test is to test for parasites. they took some blood and a urine sample, but the real fun included a stool sample (not really). So we had to poop in a cup and scoop out a sample about the size of a big marble and mix it with a preservative to get it above the red line. thats pretty much it, but its still disgusting having to play with your own poo.

All he's wrote so far...

April 21st
Kamusta from the MTC!!!!!
Kumusta! thats hello for those of you that don't speak tagalog ;) Howare things? Things are progressing well here, Tagolog is hard, but I'mworking on it. I've almost got my testimony down and am working onpraying in tagalog. its kinda fun to hear all the different languagesspoken around campus and to speak to someone that has no idea whatyou've just said. but, before i forget im going to have to send home allmy silk ties cause in the phillipines theyll get ruined. which meansi'll have to send home all, and i mean all of my yies cause theyre all100% silk. so because of that im going to need more ties before i leavethe mtc. i'll wear the silk ones in the mtc, but i'll need more befor ihead to manilla. but anyway the last few days have kinda run together.wednesday was kind of an interesting experience cause it wasnt exactlywhat i expected. but i am ajusting. i love my companion even though heis a bit different. elder gillett is from leavenworth, kansas and issomewhat of a deep thinker and has no problem enlightening us to histhoughts. a lot of the time he just wont shut up! but he is teaching mepatience, unwillingly on my part, but he is making me be patient. he hasa tendency to take forever to do everything. he seems to believe thatholding the door for the collumn of people is necessary instead of thecustomary few people, but i love him. we work farely well together andare still learning to work together. there are 9 missionaries, soon tobe 8 missionaries in our district cause one of our elders is going hometoday to treat his depression. he's a great elder and we all home thathe will treat his illness and return to the mtc in the near future. wehave 8 soon to be 7 elders and 1 sisters. when you sit in class for 10hours a day, you get to know each other well. we all like to worktogether and are progressing. but other than that, theres not much toreport. im working hard to do my best, i've never worked this hard in mylife! but as hard as im working and as much as I want to sleep i knowthat this is what i want to do and where i want to be. yesterday wasprobably the best day of the week, not only because of taking thesacrament, but i also got to take a much needed 2 hour nap :D. Alam kona ang simbahan! (I know that the church is true!) Hope everything iswell. oh btw christie, i got your package today, thank you so much!!!!!!but you'll get a letter later this week with more details and thanks.take care of yourselves and if you dont have my address, email my dad at c.beckstead@comcast.net and he'll give it to you cause i love gettingmail....and packages too :D. take care. Love,Elder B