Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Letter from Elder Rife~May 10, 2011

Less than a month from now I will be in Seoul, South Korea! I'm sooo excited.

Well, let's see. It was another great week. We got 12 new missionaries on Wednesday–8 Elders and 4 Sisters. We were so excited to get them because our branch was so small ever since our older group left for Korea. They are really cool and seem really dedicated to what they are doing. I recognized one of the Elders who came in from Hawaii. He lived in the same Hale (dormitory) as I did. So that was pretty cool. I've seen so many people from BYU Hawaii and from high school in the MTC. It's been really cool to talk to all the people I know and see where they are going to serve.

On Wednesday I got the opportunity to host some new missionaries. I didn't get to host any of our new missionaries but I hosted some native Japanese missionaries and a few sister missionaries. You can definitely tell that they are pretty nervous and it's weird think that I was in their position about seven weeks ago. It was fun though to get out of class for a little bit and get to help new missionaries and give them advice. Wednesday night we showed our new missionaries around and helped them out. Then on Thursday my companion and I went to their meeting and talked to them for about an hour about companionship inventory and things like that and bore our testimonies. Then we took them on a tour of the MTC so that they could know where everything is. Next week we get about 15 native Koreans! I'm really excited. We'll have a full branch and we'll have such a good opportunity to practice our Korean.

Last week's TRC visit was better than the week previous. But there is still so much room for improvement. I'm always surprised at how much I know how to say, but there is still so much that I want to say that I don't know how to. It's frustrating when you are in the heat of the moment and you feel like you need to say something but you can find the words to say it. It's comforting to think about how much progress I've made in the last four weeks and how much more I will learn in the next four weeks.

I've been thinking a lot about "repetition in learning." Throughout the scriptures the doctrine/gospel of Christ is mentioned by each prophet. Why? Because it is so important! Faith, Repentance, Baptism, Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost, and Enduring to the End. God is telling us how we can return to Him and one day be like Him. Anything we ever want to get good at takes lots and lots of repetition, for example, weight lifting, running, basketball, football, etc. You get better at something by doing it. You learn something well by hearing it several times.. That's why the Lord is repeating things.

So yesterday my companion and I were called to President Brown's (the Mission President of the MTC) office. When we got there we noticed that Sister Lund and Sister Allen (coordinating sisters for the Korean Zone and in my district) were in President Brown's office too. We thought we were in trouble for something so we were kinda nervous. President Brown then told us that he had something that he wanted us to do. He said that Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve would be speaking to us Tuesday night in our devotional and that he would be bringing his grandchildren. He asked us if we'd be willing to take Elder Andersen's grandchildren with us to dinner and then take them to the devotional where we would sit on the front row. We also get the opportunity to meet Elder Andersen tonight at 5:30 before we take his grandchildren to dinner. So I'm pretty excited! We get to meet him personally before we take his grandkids with us to dinner tonight, then to the devotional. President Brown told us not to tell anyone. So we're the only ones in the MTC right now who know that we will be hearing from an apostle of the Lord tonight. Kinda cool. President Brown also told me to go get a haircut today before we meet Elder Andersen and to make sure I look my best. I'm pretty excited! I'll let you all know how it went in next week's email.

Just wanted to say thank you so much for the packages and all the support from my family! I get so excited to hear from each one of you and to get to write you all back. Thank you so much for the prayers in my behalf and for all that you do for me. This week is gonna be a really great week and I'll make sure and write more about it in next week's email. I love you all!

-Elder Rife

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