Monday, 14 May 2012

First emails

It wasn't long before we had our first email.  Once we got home and settled down I turned on the computer to check emails and Facebook etc, and there was our first email from Zac, sorry, from Elder Mitchell.  This is what he said (spelling mistakes and bad grammar included!!):

Hi dad, could you pass it on to everyone that I got to the MTC safely, I know you dropped me off but I still have to let you all know.
My P-Days are tusday, I dunno if that is just for here at the MTC or what but that is when you will hear from me.
I have to let you know that you and mum will be receiving an invitation toa Picasa Web Album today that will have pictures of my MTC experience. Make sure you dont throw it away as it isnt spam. And please let me know when you have seen them.
Thank you for droping me off, we finally made it!
Love to you all!
Elder Mitchell

I checked for the link Elder Mitchell mentioned and there we found pictures of the MTC and the new missionaries from that day.  It was so nice (and reassuring) to see him and to see how happy he is.  We had fun trying to guess who his companion was.  At the end of each day we would check the link and see what they had done.  In every picture you could see he was having a wonderful time.  From the pictures we guessed it was an elder from New Zealand.

So we learned that P-day was a Tuesday, so we waited and waited and waited.  Then at about 3pm it arrived!!!!!

Hi everyone,
sorry I don't have time to write separate emails to everyone, I had a lot of emails to read over (mainly from Becky haha!)
Well I am ere safely at the MTC and I have having an amazing experience! I love it here, this week has gone so fast, but it feels like I have been here forever! (not complaining). Well My companions name is Elder PairamaKararoaRiki, (yeah! that's what I thought!) but everyone calls him Elder Riki and he is from New Zealand. He is a massive fan of... wait for it.... Basketball! go figure! any way he is an amazing companion. Also in my room is an Elder Wright from Birmingham and an Elder L'Henaff (silent 'H', 'a' sounds like an 'e', french canadians for you...)
It has been amazing here though and I have felt the spirit so much, every day feels like a sunday! its pretty weird but awesome at the same time. We have had some great classes, and firesides and devotionals. We have also had teachers acting as investigators for us to practice teaching. That's pretty weird too, but its good experience. The last lesson I taught to an "investigator" i just walked out feeling just "yes! that was good!" Well that's what I thought anyway haha.
President Walker and Sister Walker, and there councellors President and Sister Williams are so amazing and nice, I love them so much! Sister Walker is the daughter of President Gordon B Hinckley of all people!! That was quite a shock to me when she told us.
On sunday, I got to conduct the music in Sacrament meeting. It was amazing, there is honestly no sweeter song then the one you hear in the MTC.
I am glad to hear that Nan and Grandad's wedding anniversary went well, hope they liked my letter that I left for them.
It is good to hear from everybody, and Dan, i have heard what you did with mum's grabber, you are nuts!! And dad, about meeting Steven Fry, I am SO Jealous!! except i'm not because that would be a bad trait for a missionary.
Well I hope everybody is doing well, don't worry abotu me I am fine, the lord is loking after me! The food is good here, I am able to eat at least most of it.
Oh yeah, I went through the temple today, it was amazing and I love the temple so much!!
Well, we only have a limited time on the computers and my time is nearly up, so I shall say take care and may God bless all of you until I return at the end of my mission.
Love to you all!!
Elder Mitchell

So we had to be content at looking at the pictures each day while we waited for the next email.  We saw that they went on a history tour around Preston  and the out lying villages were Heber C Kimball had so much success.  They have even located the part of the river were they would perform the baptism in the village of Chatburn,  This is not the same site as the River Ribble.  We saw pictures of them street contacting, singing, eating and having a Happy Unbirthday Party!!!!

His next email arrived:

Hello everybody!!
Well this is my second week in the MTC and it has been so amazing. In my journal I have filled about 35 pages already with amazing experiences I have had since I got here, it is meant to be a day to a page journal... opps! anyway it has been so amazing here and I love being in the MTC! it feels like i have been here forever but it hasn't even been a full 2 weeks yet!
Dan - I am so sorry to hear about Tara, but im sure your next car will be great! Orange corsa? sounds good, no chance of losing that in a busy car park! haha!
Linda - I cannot believe how much Caitlan is growing up from what you have been saying. She will be talking away in no time im sure. And it is good to hear that Tam Man is being as crazy as ever! hope his head gets better hehe. But I am glad to hear all for of you are doing so well! And thank you for the letter you sent me this week, and thank thomas too, i especially loved his drawing :) I am glad to hear that Thomas enjoyed church too, and John Mackay is so funny, I love that guy! haha
It is good to hear that all of you are doing weel, and Becky, congrats on your new calling, I hope its going well and I know that you will enjoy it :) (by the way, Becky I will send you a letter as well as this email, dont worry :P)
Well today has been a great week and I have learned so much! I have some amazing teachers here who are looking out for us and there to help us. Also this week we have gone on the Church History Tour around Preston and the nearby villages. It was amazing to be following in the footsteps of Heber C Kimball and all the other early missionarires to come to the UK. It is also great to be following in your footsteps Dad, and I hope one day my future children and grandchildren can follow in mine! I have some great photos too, but I will have to send them another time... i forgot to bring my camera cable...
I also got to go to the temple again this morning. I love the temple so much and we should all do everything we can to go there as often as we can.
Well I am kinda running out of time, I have so much to share with all of you but only half an hour to email, it is so not fair!! but I am making sure most of it is in my journal for when I return.
Thank you all for your love and support, I can feel your prayers and I know that God will watch over all of us, as long as we are doing what we should be, and in the words of David A Bednar being "a good boy, or a good girl."
Love Elder Mitchell.
ps. Next tuesday looks very busy as we are leaving the MTC next wednesday so I am not sure if I will get a chance to email, but I will do my best. Also, because of this, don't send me any parcels until I am in the mission field, I dont want me to miss any that are sent.
Love you all!!!

So it looks like we'll have a lot to read in his journal from his time at the MTC.  He has also been blessed to have visits from Elder Donaldson and Elder Herbertson, Area Seventies; and Elder and Sister David Evans, Executive Director of the Missionary Department.  He has also been able to go to the Temple a few times!  They even got to celebrate American Mother's Day.  We had an email to say that Elder Mitchell would be calling home at 2:30pm on Sunday, so I had to make sure that all my Bishop duties were done in time for me to be home for this most important call.

Hi Mum, Dad and Linda, don't sent this email out to everyone.
This is just a quick email to let you know that because it is American Mother's day on Sunday I will get to call home this weekend. I will get to call home at 2.30(pm) for half an hour, so make sure you are all home so i can talk to all of you at once.
Oh yeah, don't tell Becky, I want it to be a surprise for her. Just make sure she is home.
Look forward to talking to you all then.
Love Elder Mitchell

It was wonderful to speak to him for a little while.  He spoke to Linda, Thomas, Caitlan would make lots of noise till the phone was put to her mouth - then she would be quiet and try to eat the phone, Daniel, Nanny Noakes, Granddad Noakes, Mum, Dad, and as Becky is living with us she got to speak to him to.  We got to be Americans for 30 minutes!!  Next call Christmas!

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