Wednesday, October 29, 2008

MTC--Week 8

WE got our flight plans!!! Oh, that was probably the most exciting part of the MTC, and I already knew where I was going for layovers!! It just means we're so much closer to leaving. Okay, here's the schedule. We meet up front at 4 AM Tuesday morning. We take a bus to SLC. Our plane leaves 7:20 and we arrive in Chicago at 11:40. (These are the times I received, so you'll have to take in account where I am and the time differences yourself.) We leave Chicago 5:05 PM and arrive in London 6:40 AM. We leave London 10:30AM and arrive in Rome 1:55. At first I thought this was all SLC time because it seemed like it took me more than a day and half to get to Russia. However, it should have because Russia is further I have changed my mind. Anyway, you can figure it out, those are just the times I received.

Guess who our travel leader is! Yep, I wouldn't make you guess unless I thought you could do it. ME! Why? MY first thought was because they picked the first person at the top of the list. With a name like Bjarnason, I got the number one slot for people headed to Rome. However, the travel leader for those heading to Milan is Sorella Doxey. She is beat by Anziani Baldwin, Bowman, and Carter. So then we thought it was just the first Sorella on the list. However, in talking with Sister Bringhurst headed towards Washington (she left yesterday morning) she is the only sister in her group and is not the travel leader. Her travel leader is the first Elder on the list. So, is it inspired? I don't know. Maybe it's just that Sorella Doxey was inspired and the rest of us travel leaders are just at the top of the list. Weird huh. Anyway, all that means is that if there's a problem, I'M the one who has to call it in. They couldn't have picked a worse person. Oh well, I almost hope that something wrong does happen so I can grow a little more.

Yikes, so this is my last week. Crazy huh!

Well, yesterday I got two notices for packages. However, the mail room was so behind that they weren't handing out packages. So, I may have received your package. Or maybe two other people sent me packages and I'll get yours later. I don't know. I am curious though.

Oh, and I finally got my absentee ballot. And I filled it out. And I mailed it in. I can do no more, I've done everything I could. The first time I faxed in, the person who was at the desk didn't really know what she was doing. This last time the person called the county clerk to make sure it worked. It came through fuzzy, so she did it again. That's what the difference was. Anyway, it's done. I didn't know much about the different propositions, but I tried to vote well.

This is the last week you all can spoil me with Dear Elders. I've heard rumor you can still use them when I'm no longer in the MTC, but it costs money. Of course, I haven't actually ever seen the website so I have no idea.

Today is Fratello Bonham's birthday. He wouldn't tell us originally when it was. However, yesterday he told us because he knew he wouldn't see us today because it's our preparation day.

Wow, time really flies by quickly. I forgot to mention last week that two weeks ago I got to do sealings (as a kid of course). That was really cool.

Oh and I also want to just say that I love the Anziani!! I am going to miss the ones going to Milan so much. It's strange, they've become such good friends with me. There is one elder that every time he did something wrong, I would ask him in Italian, "Who are you?" Now I just look at him and he says, "I know, I'm a missionary." They are all so awesome! I just love them all so much.

And I love you all too. My time is almost up. I'm down to two minutes left. That means I definitely won't be coming back on later. I do love you all. Keep smiling:)

aka Sorella Bjarnason

Monday, October 27, 2008

MTC -- Week 7

P.S. from Kate: Sorry the post is late!! It's been a busy week!!

Signs are being stolen? That's crazy! And I know its not funny, but I can't help laughing. Satan really doesn't want Prop 8 to pass. Unfortunately, I'm not sure if I'm going to be able to help in the battle. I sent a fax to the number I was sent last Tuesday, right after I got the number. They haven't sent me anything since. I might try again today, but I'm really busy and I really don't know what I can do differently from last time. So, I might not be able to vote in this election. I'm sorry.

Okay, news: last Tuesday Elder Richard G. Scott came to speak for our devotional. I got to shake his hand. That was incredible. Sheri Dew spoke at our Sunday night fireside two days ago. She's amazing and it was cool to be able to see her.

On Wednesday we received new Sorelle and Anziani. All six of the Sorelle that came in are headed for Rome. 8 Anziani came in and 7 are going to Milan. The one who is going to Rome is actually a twin with one of the Anziani going to Milan. It's actually really cool to watch them. They look so much alike and I'm always trying to guess which one is which. It doesn't help that they have the same last name.

I'm sending home more pictures...not very many, but I want show my haircut.

Last week I received cookies from someone I didn't know. I'm still building up the courage to try them out. I don't know, how do I know they're not poisoned. Why would someone I don't know send me cookies?

Can I have a bragging moment? Last night Fratello Bonham read a scripture and we were supposed to guess who the speaker was. I don't remember what the scripture was, but I remember it talking about "foolish traditions of your fathers." I put forth my best guess of Corihor. Apparently we weren't supposed to get it right. He wanted to make the point that Satan can make things sound right by twisting words. Other people guessed Corihor too, but a few also guessed prophets.

Anyway, I was happy because I was right, but this leads me to one of my concerns. I'm scared of bible bashing. No, it's not that I'm scared of actually bible bashing, I'm scared that I might get caught in it. I HATE arguing. If people ask me questions, I won't be doing it to argue, I'll be doing it because I know the answer. So many of the things that people could say to me, I will have a response. I don't know how I will be able to humble myself and admit that I don't know everything. And I don't know if I'll be able to recognize whether people are bashing or sincerely curious. Anyway, I hope I will have the spirit with me to know what to do in those moments.

My departure date is November 4. I'm pretty sure I leave in the morning and from what I understand I also get a chance to call home in the airport. I don't remember any of my siblings doing that, but that's what everyone is saying. So I don't know.

I'm going to go and switch my load now because I can't think of anything else to write. I may come on again later. I love you all.

Sorella Aubry Bjarnason

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

MTC -- Week 6

Okay, what I want to tell you. Fratello Bonham said there's a movie called The Witness where Harrison Ford goes into the witness protection program with the Amish people. However, in Italian, they mistranslated and called the Amish Mormoni. So Italians think we're Amish. Oops.

On Sunday we had a Relief Society meeting with Sister Martha Johnson. It was a great lesson on stretching yourselves. At the very end, Sister Johnson said that if we saw Elder Cox headed for Guatemala to tell him that his aunt loves him. I figured that that didn't apply to me because I don't associate with Spanish speakers. Of course, the Spanish speakers do like to overrun our lunch table sometimes; and guess who I ended up sitting next to half an hour after the talk! Yep! Elder Cox headed for Guatemala. I saw him later in the day and he mentioned how it was cool to be the most famous person in the MTC for the day. Several girls had told him that his aunt loved him.

This week, people have been talking a lot about how I speak Italian with a Russian accent. That makes me happy. I don't know how they can tell though. I guess it's because when I don't know a work, I say the Russian version of a guess rather than the Italian version of a guess. Oops.

Oh, I want to say something more about voting. Sunday Night, when I felt in despair for not doing everything I could, the words from the song from Prince of Egypt rang in my head. "There can be miracles when you believe." Then I had to ask myself, "Do I believe?" I hope so. I hope I am able to vote this election. Please pray for me to have the courage to approach the front desk again. I love you all.

Sorella Bjarnason

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

MTC--Week 5

I got to see Conference; all four sessions of conference. When the Elders watched Priesthood, we got to watch the Relief Society Meeting from last week.

Okay, so I am so excited about the temple in Rome. I'm also very excited for the temple in Kansas; and I thought about Raeann when the temple in Calgary was announced, even though she served in Edmonton. Back to the temple in Rome: I am so excited. When he was listing the temples, I kept thinking, okay, he's going to mention Rome. Rome will be the next one. When he announced it, Sorella Pitkin gasped so loudly! Everyone in the gym knew where the Italians were sitting. It was weird because it almost seemed as though President Monson had heard her. Obviously, he was responding to all of the people in the Conference Center who gasped, but it was still way cool.

Yesterday, we got to hear the reactions of both our teachers when they found out. Both served in Rome. Earlier, before any of us really knew anything, there was an argument of where the temple would be. There are five stakes in Milan and only one in Rome. However, they have land in Rome. Sorella Jones told us that they were so close to getting a temple. There were three things that needed to be signed and they had already done two of them. Well, it appears all three are done now.

It sometimes makes me wonder of God's plan for us. I look at my teachers and how they already know what to do. They were both excellent missionaries. They could do so much with this new announcement. Why would Heavenly Father think that we could handle this? Why does He call new missionaries and ask them to serve for so short a period of time? I have to remind myself that Sorella Jones and Fratello Bonham both started out just like me. Er ist noch kein Meister fomm Himmel gefallen. Okay, so my German in really nonexistent anymore. However, what that is supposed to mean is that no Master ever fell from the sky. We all have to work to become great.

I really have so much to improve. I tend to make goals only that I know I can make, and then I try to overachieve them. That's not the point of goals. You are supposed to make them so you can reach them. If you don't make them high enough, you'll never really know how far you can go. (This was something I realized in gym when declaring how many laps I would run...I didn't used to care until an Elder made me feel guilty by bringing the gospel into it and saying, "Pray to know if Heavenly Father wants you to be fit." Grr.) Anyway, my point is that we were supposed to make goals for how we were going to act now that there is a temple. One of the things I wrote was "If it comes to it, I'll wake up early to study from the Book of Mormon." I couldn't even put it in stone despite the fact that I wanted to. Well, now you know my goal, and I'll still try to stick to it. So this morning I woke up at 5:30.

Caspita! Why does time fly so quickly? Okay, I'm going to send this and then write another letter, just in case I lose track of the time and lose everything.