PMG – Preach My Gospel – the missionary manual which provided the main subjects of this past week.
I wish I could describe adequately the past week at the MTC. We experienced that the Holy Spirit testifies of truth – even when you are role-playing a situation with your spouse! We did various activities during the week when the Holy Spirit was very strong, so there were a lot of teary eyes in most all our meetings.
Last night we had a testimony meeting with the senior missionaries who were in various language studies (held in the evenings this week – after a full day of other activities). Testimonies were borne in Spanish, German, Samonan, Indonesian, French, Russian and, of course, Magyarul, or Hungarian (hope I did not forget any). So there was another teary eyed event. Ron did his testimony perfectly by heart and if you truly understood how hard learning ANYTHING new (let alone one of the hardest languages in the world) is for him, you would understand how proud I was of him and how I was reduced to a blubbering mass. The Lord is truly blessing us with special help – the Gift of Tongues, promised to us by our Stake President when he “set us apart” (special Priesthood blessing) before we left for the MTC. The Mission President also promised us this gift when he spoke to us when we first arrived at the MTC. My testimony was adequate – I was a nervous wreck!
This week there were 102 senior couples – called to various missions of the Church: Samoa, Alpine German, France, Indonesia, Madagascar, Dominican Republic, the newly formed Salt Lake West mission, Montreal, Monterey Mexico, Russia, several military base missions (Japan, London, and other places), Tuba City, Arizona (Navaho Indian Reservation), Florida, Hawaii, all over the USA – too many places to remember. This was the second highest number of senior missionaries ever at the MTC. Last week was the most, at 114 couples. The Prophet of our Church has been asking the seniors in our Church to come and serve and they are stepping up and doing it! Seniors are used to help support small congregations, help reactivate members who have slipped out of activiity, teach in the seminary and institute programs, work in the mission homes as office managers and work in just about any job you can imagine that might be done in a Church setting. We have stepped out of our comfort zone – no sitting on the couch for us! (Actually it is just another testimony of the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.)
This week our meetings were 8-4:30 each day, M-F. We met in large groups each morning and then were assigned into small districts for small group learning. Our meetings were run by 22 or so year old returned missionaries. Our district had 4 couples and we had RMs teaching us also. Their poise and organizational skills in presenting these lessons were fantastic. It is not hard to fall in love with these darling outstanding young men and women.
Of course, we had our evening language meetings wtih Kyle, our major Hungarian tutor. His parents must be so proud of him. He plays the piano, has a wonderful singing voice, has a darling personality, smart enough to be studying Civil Engineering – what’s not to love? We sang hymns using the new Hungarian Hymnusz konyve (book), that his wife gave to him for his recent birthday! He was beaming pretty broadly when Ron gave his biszonysag (testimony) tonight. His wife recently got a job teaching fifth grade at the American Heritage school. It is a private school, run by LDS members in a nearby town.
So we said goodbye to new friends as we parted tonight. Most are leaving for their missions tomorrow or Monday. Some we will see at the MTC Monday as we go through an extra three days of specialized training for our various callings.