Thursday, August 27, 2009

Wednesday, August 26: Sixth Week at the MTC

Dear Family and Friends,How are you all doing? This week has been an amazing one...not like all of the other weeks haven't been...but this one has been extra good! First of all, I want to thank you for your prayers in my behalf that I would get feeling better. I felt the power from your prayers and I know that they have blessed me. Every day I have felt better and I have regained my energy. I went to the doctor yesterday for my last check-up and he said that my lungs sound a ton better and that my ears look not so swollen. My ears are still a little bit plugged up and tender but I know it will just take some time for them to get all of the way better. I know that there is power from prayer and that your prayers helped me so much! THANKS! Well, to re-cap the week, last Thursday was the hardest day I have ever had while here at the MTC, but always after the hard times I appreciate the blessings I have so much more and I grow closer to the Savior. On Thursday Zuster Fritz and I had to teach both of our progressing investigators in Dutch. I always get really nervous before teaching because of my poor language skills and my desire to teach with the Spirit. We taught our investigators and I was so frusterated because I wanted so badly to express my testimony, love for the investigators, and love for the Savior but my poor vocabulary seemed to hold me back. I felt the Spirit within my heart but I felt like I could not get my investigators to feel it. After teaching both investigators I was pretty overwhelmed and humbled. We went to the Referral Center to make calls to people throughout the US and talk to them about church materials they had ordered because of a pass-a-long card they had received or a TV ad they had seen. I was not really excited to do this because of the difficulty I had had with teaching my investigators but I said a prayer in my heart that I would be able to follow the spirit as I made the phone calls. My first call a young man answered the phone and I began to talk to him. I felt like the spirit placed in my heart all of the things I needed to say and all of the scriptures I needed to share with him. He was so receptive to the message and commited to read Ether 12 and pray about it. I bore a simple testimony and he agreed to have me call him back a couple of days later to follow up on his reading and praying. It was so awesome! I know that the phone call was a tender mercy from the Lord letting me know that I do have the ability to share the gospel with others as I rely on the Spirit and do my best. I know that I will make a lot of mistakes with the Dutch language but I also know that the spirit doesn't make mistakes and will carry the message I desire to share into the hearts of those I am teaching no matter how poor my speaking abilities may be. This experience changed my whole week and made me re-commit to try my best to follow the spirit! I have seen miracles everyday come from being more sensitive to the spirit. Sunday was awesome with the temple dedication! I was able to attend the 3:00 session and I absolutely love President Monson's talk and Elder Zwick's talk. The temple is such a special place and it is such a blessing to have so many so close to us. I know that the temple is the house of the Lord and that he dwells there. Sunday night President Allen came to the MTC again and spoke at the fireside. He is such an amazing man! Yesterday was definitely my favorite day of the week! Elder Richard G. Scott was our devotional speaker and it was the most amazing meeting I have ever been in in my whole life! I sang in the choir again (sorry Molly, but I love it) so I had a really good seat. We were waiting to see who the speaker would be when in walked Elder Scott and all 2,300 missionaries stood up in reverence of the Apostle. I could feel the power he carried as a special witness of Christ right when he entered the room. There is definitely a special place in my heart for Elder Scott because of the amazing experience I had my senior year of high school when he came to our Stake Conference and President Allen was experience that I will never forget. Anyway, Elder Scott began his talk by asking all of the missionaries who were learning a new language to raise their hands. He then bestowed upon all of us an Apostolic blessing of the gift of tongues-that we would be able to share the message of the restored gospel and bear testimony easily. The comfort that came from that blessing was overwhelming and so powerful! Just what I need! The rest of the meeting he talked about following the spirit and he shared some really amazing personal experience. Half way through he bestowed upon all of us another apostolic blessing of protection that we would all be safe from any harm as we live obediently and have faith. I am so thankful for those two blessings and the authority that he carries to bestow those upon me personally, as well as all of the other missionaries. Time is running out and I have so much more I would like to share but I will write more letters to you later! Thank you all for taking the time out of your busy and hectic lives to pray for me and write to me. I love you all so much! I love being a missionary and I have seen so many miracles take place, mostly within my heart, while I have been at the MTC. I know that the Savior lives. Hearing from one of his apostles, a special witness of him, strengthened my testimony! I know he loves each of us! I love you! Love, Zuster Sharp

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Wednesday, August 19: Fifth Week at the MTC

Hello Family! I am sure you are interested to know why I left the MTC for a few hours this week, let me just say it has been a crazy week! As you know, I haven't been feeling tip top since I got to the MTC. I think that was mostly because of stress and a new environment but over the last 2 weeks it has progressively gotten worse. I have had this nasty cough and I just haven't been able to get feeling better. Last Saturday I woke up at 5:50 to go to the gym early with one of the sisters in my room and my ears were really plugged up, as well as my sinuses. I didn't want to make a big deal out of it though so I went to gym. After running a couple of laps around the track I was really struggling to breathe so I decided to take it easy and walk for the rest of gym time. After a shower and getting ready I still felt crumby and decided I better go to the health clinic but since it was Saturday it was closed. I went to the front desk right before breakfast and told them I was not feeling well and they put me on the phone with a doctor. I explained to him how I was feeling and he said that I needed to leave the MTC and go to the BYU urgent health center. Zuster Fritz and I headed out at about 8:45 on the shuttle (it was the first time being in a car for 4 weeks...weird!) but I was worried that I was just being a wimp and that I just had a cold. When I met with the doctor she looked in my ears and said I had really bad ear infections and a sinus infection. It really was good news because she said she would put me on an anti-biotic. Then she listened to my breathing. She couldn't believe how bad I sounded! She had me get a chest x-ray and come to find out I have pneumonia as well. Three in one! She wrote me out a perscription and the MTC shuttle took us to Rite-Aid so I could fill my prescription. Zuster Fritz and I were at Rite-Aid for an hour by ourselves and we didn't really know what to do being out in the real world...that was weird too! Finally we returned to the MTC at about 11:00 and headed to class. I was feeling pretting crumby...aches, headache, after lunch our zone leaders gave us permission to go back to the residence hall and rest for a few hours. I slept from 1:45 until 5:45 and I definitely felt guilty for sleeping that long but I knew that my body needed it. Mom, I wanted you too! After the sleep I felt a little better and it seemed like the anti-biotic was kicking in. I went to class for the rest of the night and felt okay. Sunday I felt good and Monday too but yesterday I was feeling to great. THe health clinic made a follow up appointment for me to see them yesterday afternoon. The doctor is still pretty concerned about my pneumonia so he put me on a stronger anti-biotic, an inhaler, and a cough syrup. Hopefully that medicine will do the job! Today I am feeling pretty good. I can't wait to get all of the way better so I can totally focus on the work...I want to get all of my energy back! Anyway, thank you Grandma and Brooke for your letters...there was nothing that made me feeler better while I was sick than to hear from family! I love you all so much! I know that even though you didn't know about me being sick, your prayers in my behalf have helped me so much! I do have to say that the sickness was all worth the adventure of leaving the MTC for a few probably won't happen again while I am here! I have another appointment to meet with the doctor on Friday to see if I am making improvements with my pneumonia so I will keep you posted! This experience really helped me turn to the Savior and rely on him! He knows how we feel in every situation and therefore knows how to help and comfort us. I definitely have felt his love over the past week when I really needed it. I am so thankful for the Atonement! It does work miracles! So how are you all doing? I hope you received my letters this past week! Brooke, did you get yours? Everyone else? E-mail? I always get worried that the e-mail doesn't make it or that the letters get lost and I don't want you to think that I have forgotten you! How was Oregon mom and dad? I can't wait to hear all about it...Wild River, Jack in the Box, Dutch Bros.(just kidding)! Despite me being sick this week has been amazing. I can't believe I only have three and a half weeks here! I love being a missionary so much! This past week we taught our progressing investigator and she prayed with us! It was so exciting! Seeing other people come close to their Savior and Heavenly Father brings more joy to me than I ever thought possible. THe dutch is coming and I just have to thank Heavenly Father for the blessings I have received in learning the language! I have been studying the book of Matthew this week and after reading about a lot of the miracles he performed on the earth I started thinking about the miracles he has performed in my life. I started to reflect on those miracles and write them that really stuck out to me was when my eyesight was healed after wearing the patch for several months! THat was definitely not by luck but a pure miracle from the Lord. I know that he still works miracles and wants to bless us if we will let him! I love you so much and hope that you have a wonderful week! I keep you all in my prayers! Love, Zuster Sharp p.s. Carli, I will never call anyone a walking germ again...

Wednesday, August 12: Fourth Week at the MTC

Hello family and friends! Wednesday's come around so fast and I can't believe this Wednesday marks my 4th week of being in the MTC! Time has just flown by and I know it will go even faster with the 4 1/2 weeks I have left. I head out on September 14th to Belgium and I have very mixed feelings about it. I am excited of course to get out there and share the gospel but I feel like I will never be ready enough in 4 1/2 weeks with the language and my ability to teach effectively by the spirit in a manner that I can represent the Lord. But I find comfort in knowing that since this is his work he will make of me what I need to be...I have definitely already seen that happen here at the MTC. I have to say that I LOVE the MTC! It has been such a humbling experience here to see all of my weaknesses and faults but I have seen how I can be changed through faith and trust in Jesus Christ. This is his work. He is not just on the sidelines cheering me on. He is playing right beside me. Lots of miracles have taken place this week and I have felt the love of my Savior and Heavenly Father through the spirit. Monday our class had our first English fast and spoke Dutch all day! It was difficult to not be able to express myself as well as I wanted to and I know I made a lot of mistakes as I did speak but I promised my Heavenly Father that I would do my best to speak the language all day. I can now see that because of my committment to my promise I have been so blessed to better understand others as they speak in Dutch and I can communicate so much more! What a miracle and tender mercy! I can even teach the first lesson in Dutch now (a pretty basic and simple version) and I am progressing! On Monday we had the TRC again and the scenario was that we had to help our investigators move and teach them how to pray in Dutch. It went so well! After the Dutch part, Zuster Fritz and I had to teach one investigator a 35 minute lesson on the Plan of Salvation, and focus on the Word of Wisdom. The spirit was so strong as we catered to the needs of our investigator, used scriptures to help our investigator understand the Plan, and testified of the love Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ have for her. The love I felt for the investigator by the end of the lesson was beyond anything I have ever felt before. I wanted her to be baptized and I wanted her to partake of the joy that comes from following the example of the Savior! I have really tried to focus on developing the Christlike attribute of charity this week because I know I am lacking in that area. The Sunday night fireside was focused on charity (another tender mercy) and the speaker told us to develop charity by asking ourselves not only "What would Jesus do?" but "How would Jesus feel?" This struck me with so much power and has been on my mind since the fireside. I love to serve others and I find it easy to act in the way I should towards others but I do not always have my thoughts and feelings focused on doing things out of love but because of the need to be obedient. I need to forget myself and get to work. I need to have my actions AND my heart totally immersed in serving the Lord and in loving the people that I serve. In Moses 7:33 the Lord lays out the 2 essential things that we all must do during our time on earth to become like him so we can return to him. He says, "that they should love one another and that they should choose me, their Father." This is reaffirmed in Matthew 22:37-40. President Ezra Taft Benson said, "When we put God first all other things fall into their proper place or drop out of our lives." This is so true! As I have tried to put God first in my life here at the MTC, everything has fallen into its proper place or has gone out of my life. This gospel is the most important thing! It is what enables us to have joy and return to our Heavenly Father and live with our families forever! I am so excited for that day! Sorry, I always seem to ramble on about my studies but I love the things I am learning. This week has been a great one! I love all of the new sisters that came into the MTC last Wednesday and we have a really close and unified District and Branch! I am happy and doing well. I love all of you so much! I thank you once again for your prayers and letters...they help me so much! I am growing and changing everyday through the Atonement of Jesus Christ...I have a lot more to change but that is what is so wonderful about the infinite atonement of the Savior. I love my teachers here-Brother Bond and Zuster Spencer. They are amazing! I love the Dutch language and I am excited (and nervous) to have another English fast tomorrow and on Friday. I hope this e-mail finds you well and happy. I think about you and love prayers are with you too! I am way excited because Tish (Sister Miles) will be coming in here today! It will be wonderful to share in this missionary experience together! IF I remember correctly, Mom and Dad, you left to Oregon today! I hope you are having a safe trip and I can't wait to hear all about it! I love you so much! And the family picture is awesome! I show it off to everyone! Thanks for sending that so quickly! You are awesome! Have a great week! Love, Zuster Sharp

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Wednesday, August 5: Third Week at the MTC

Dear Family, Can you believe it!? I have been here exactly three weeks! Time has just flown by and I am already starting to stress about not having enough time here in the MTC to feel fully prepared to speak the language and teach the gospel, but I guess that is just how it goes! I will just have to make the most of the time I have. This week has been excellent and I appreciate so much the love and support that you keep on giving. The letters and the prayers mean more to me than you will ever know! I read and re-read them and they give me so much strength. Mom, the zucchini bread was amazing and my companions loved it too! That was so thoughtful of you to let me enjoy some of the fruits of the garden...I wish I could still help out with the gardening so it means so much to me that you took the time to send the bread! It was absolutely delicious! And I love how you related it to the work I am doing right cute! I love knowing that everything is alright at home and that everyone is happy. I hope that you know that I am happy too! Things are really picking up here with the language and the teaching. Sometimes I get so overwhelmed but I always feel great comfort from the Spirit. Last Saturday I had the opportunity to make calls in the Referall Center to people who requested a Book of Mormon, Bible, or church video. I called three people to see if they received their Book of Mormon and how they felt about it. It was awesome! One gentleman stayed on the phone with me for 20 minutes and allowed me to share my testimony and some scriptures from the Book of Mormon with him. It was a little nerve-racking but awesome to do the real thing instead of just practicing on pretend investigators. He didn't commit to having the missionaries come to his home but he said he would look more into the Book of Mormon. The next lady I called said that she would like a copy of the Book of Mormon so I shipped one out to her. I hope that I can get in touch with her once more so I can see what she thinks about it. This experience got me so excited to share the gospel and I was amazed at the love I developed for these to people in just minutes of talking to them on the phone. I know I really am going to love the people of the Netherlands so much! Last night we had a devotional and President Merril Bateman and his wife came and spoke to us. He shared a story about the song, "Because I Have Been Given Much." He said that in Peru there was a time when food prices rose so high that the people could not afford to eat and were starving to death. The Church Humanitarian Services sent planes full of food to help them. Once the food arrived Elder Bateman went there for a stake conference and was amazed at how giving the people were even though they didn't have that much. They had spiritual nourishment and that was enough to share with others around them. I have been so blessed with that spiritual nourishment as well and I know that I must share that with others. This is a gospel of joy, happiness, and love! Bishop Williams sent me the ward newsletter and I loved the talk that Brother Jentzsch shared in his message, especially this part..."I come out this evening with a plea that we stop seeking out the storms and enjoy more fully the sunlight. I'm suggesting that we accentuate the positive. I'm asking that we look a little deeper for the good, that we still our voices of insult and sarcasm, that we more generously compliment virtue and effort...What I am suggesting and asking is that we turn from the negativism that so permeates our society and look for the remarkable good in the land in times which we live, that we speak of one anothers virtues more that we speak of one anothers faults, that optimism replaces pessimism. Let our faith replace our fears" (President Hinckley). I love this quote! It made me reevaluate my attitude and recommit myself to be more joyful and positive, just like the Savior is and wants us to be! We find joy in living like him and through his amazing and infinite Atonement. Example is so crucial in missionary work and I know that I need to be a better example of joy so that others will be interested in hearing the message of the restored gospel. THank you all for your examples of joy and optimism! You inspire me to be better everyday! I am way excited because I will have three new sisters coming in today that I am over. I can't wait to meet them and serve them in any way I can to make there MTC experience the best that it can be. THe language is coming but it is difficult. I am trying to speak as much as I can so I can improve but it is taking time to settle in. But with all I have learned so far I know that the Lord has blessed me so much! I love my teachers, Brother Bond and Zuster Spencer! THey are awesome...but they think that out of any missionary in our class I will be the most likely to get in a wreck on my bike...I don't know how I always send the message that I am clumsy like that...oh well! I love you so much! You are in my prayers! I will send a letter and pictures home today! THe gospel is true and is so amazing! I love being a missionary! It is the best thing ever! Love, Zuster Sharp

Wednesday, July 29: Second Week at the MTC

Dag! Hoe gaat het met u! Ik ben ouitstekand! I am absolutely loving the MTC! The first week was definitely an adjustment week and now I am smooth sailing! This past week was wonderful and I learned so much. To start out, last Wednesday right after I e-mailed you our district went to the Provo temple. Because one of the solo sisters wanted to do initiatories instead of an endowment session, Sister Fritz and I offered to go with her. We got out of the temple about an hour earlier than the rest of our district and started to walk back down to the MTC. We noticed that there was a huge tour bus parked in the front of the temple with lots and lots of tourists walking around the temple grounds. We didn't pay much attention to who they were or where they were from until we noticed that they were all speaking a foreign language. As we walked closer we realized that they were speaking Dutch! I introduced myself and Sister Fritz in Dutch and told them that we were missionaries going to the Netherlands. It just so happens that they were all from the Netherlands and were on a church history tour! It's a good thing that they were quite fluent in english because after the introduction I didn't know anything else to say in Dutch. They took pictures with us and wrote down there names and wards so we can find them when we get to the Netherlands. They were all such nice people and I instantly had a great love for them. That was definitely a tender mercy from the Lord because it just added more to my testimony that the Netherlands is the place I am supposed to serve for the next year and a half. I am so thankful that the solo sister wanted to do initiatories and that we went with her because if we hadn't, we would have missed meeting those people. It was so awesome! Thursday, Friday, and Saturday were huge language learning days and were a bit overwhelming but looking back I realize how much help I received from the Lord in helping me pick up and understand so many new things. It is amazing that I can listen to a conversation in Dutch and understand almost everything that is said. It is taking a lot of studying and dedication but I am being so blessed! Sunday was awesome! It is my favorite day of the week here at the MTC. It is a day of rest and rejuvination and the Spirit is here so powerfully. Every Sunday night we have a fireside with all 2,300 missionaries and this past Sunday President Allen came and spoke! I have such a great love for him and when his picture popped up on the screen I couldn't wait to hear what he had to say. He talked about putting our whole heart and souls into missionary work; not just being at the MTC most of the time and letting our thoughts wander home some of the time, but being here 100%! I committed to myself that night that I was going to do this for the Lord. It reminded me of the song, "I feel my Savior's Love" in the line that says, "I offer him my heart, my Shepherd he will be!" Ever since I made that committment to serve him with all of my heart, my mind has been focused and my ability to learn the language and be a more effective teacher has increased to much. The joy that I have felt over the past few days has been incredible. It is not joy for myself anymore, but joy in bringing others unto Christ. After the fireside I went up to the front to say hi to President Allen and he was so friendly to me. At first he didn't recognize who I was until he glanced at my name tag and then he freaked out. He told me to tell all of you hello. It was wonderful to see someone I knew. On Monday we had another appointment at the TRC where we had to do a 7 minute contact in Dutch. It was scary and a little nerve-racking, but Sister Fritz and I survived! After the contacting, we had to teach the first lesson to an investigator for 35 minutes in English. Everything was going well and the spirit was really strong until I had a coughing attack (I have had a cough and sore throat for the past week), lost my voice, and me and my companion had to leave the room to go and get a drink so I could continue on with the lesson. How embarrassing! Atleast the investigator was understanding and the end of the lesson turned out okay. Tuesday was wonderful! Tuesday night we have a devotional with a member of the 12 or of the 70. This week we had Elder Dellenbach from the 70 and he talked all about the Book of Mormon. Sister Fritz and I sang in the choir for the devotional and we are quite the MTC celebrities now because they zoomed in on our two faces while we were singing and projected it on the big screen. People keep coming up to us and asking us if we were the ones on the is pretty awesome to be celebrities around here! Elder Dellenbach spoke about the Book of Mormon and the miracle of it. It is a miracle and I know that the Book is the word of God and the evidence that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God. The church is true and I love being able to testify of that! I hope you know that I love you! Your prayers and letters mean the world to me! Sorry so short but I only have a half an hour to write. You are in my prayers as well! The church is ture! Love Zuster Sharp

Wednesday, July 22: First Week at the MTC

Lauren has the opportunity to email us each week. Every Wednesday we look forward to hearing from her. I'm sure her letters will brighten your day, just as they have ours!

Dag! Hoe gaat het met u? I hope things are absolutely wonderful! I cannot express to you how much your letters, prayers, and support mean to me! Each day I think of you and thank my Heavenly Father for blessing me with such amazing family and friends. I can't believe I have been at the MTC for a week today! Some days have been a little long but overall the week has flown by. 1 week down, 8 more to go! I totally feel for the new missionaries that are coming in today...I am glad I will never have to go through that whole process again. But don't get me wrong, I do love the MTC and I am learning so much! My companion, Zuster Fritz, is awesome and we get along so well. She is from South Jordan and it turns out that we have many mutual friends. It has been such a blessing to have her as my companion because she has such a strong testimony and a vast knowledge of the gospel and has picked the language up very quickly. She really helps me out a lot! Sometimes I get overwhelmed when she can carry on a whole conversation in Dutch and I stand there not understanding a word they are saying but I just have to remind myself that she studied three years of German, lived in Germany for a period of 6 months, and took a class on Dutch linguistics because German and Dutch are very similar. The Lord really has blessed me as I have tried to learn the language. I said my first prayer in Dutch in behalf of our District (which was way scary but a good experience), I can introduce myself in Dutch, and I can bear my testimony. I am picking up more words and beginning to understand the sentence structure as I SYL (speak your language...Brandt will understand what this means). It really is amazing that I am beginning to think using Dutch words and I sometimes say words like "well" as "vell" because the w's are v's in Dutch. Anyway, the language is coming and I am so excited about it! I love the district I am in and I am so impressed by the Elders. Elder Johnson and Elder Matthews are in the classroom with Zuster Fritz and I, and we have about 8 other Danish Elders in our district. Sunday was an amazing day and really pumped me up for this week. I was called as the Coordinating Sister for our zone, which means I am in charge of taking care of the sisters in our zone, I participate in Branch Presidency meetings, and I get to help with the orientation of the new missionaries. I am so excited to be able to serve the Lord in this calling! My time is totally filled here at the MTC! I don't believe I have ever used my time more effectively in my whole life! We study from 7 in the morning until 9:30 at night. Although many missionaries struggle with the sleeping schedule, I am doing very well! I feel like I am getting more sleep than I ever did while at school or home. The spirit is very strong here and it is such a neat place! THe showers are not as great as I said they were in my first letter...I think they just clean them right before the new missionaries come in...thank you so much for the shower flip-flops mom! You are a life saver! The food is okay...I miss good old home cooking but the food here will just have to do! I had a few rough days when I first arrived here, not being home sick but just missing home! I think Wednesday night was the first time it really hit me that I wouldn't be coming home for a year and a half! The letters you gave to me when you dropped me off sustained me throughout the week and gave me a lot of comfort. I know I was also blessed by your prayers and love! Thank you! I have had many other awesome experiences and adventures this week, including getting my blood drawn (they had to poke me three times to get a good vein so they gave me a stuffed animal, getting a stool sample (I will let you know that my mission and the Taiwan mission are the only ones that require this and for anyone who knows me, you know this was very difficult!), and having my testimony strengthened like never before! Wednesday is my P-day and that is the only day I can write home. I only get 30 minutes on the computer so my e-mails might be really short but I will write back to you. "Dear Elder" is awesome (Brooke and Kristin) which might be helpful in writing. My time is ticking and we get to go to the temple (I still get to go to the temple on Wednesdays-what a blessing!) so I want you to know that I love you and I will be sending a letter off today as well! I love the gospel and I know that it is true! I know that families can be together forever! I am so thankful for the resoration of the gospel through the prophet Joseph Smith! I am so thankful for this opportunity to serve as an official missionary for the Lord and invite his children to come unto Christ to find the greatest joy and peace available! I love you and pray for you everyday! Tot ziens!Love,Zuster Lauren Sharp

Lauren's First day in the MTC

We received a letter from Lauren just a few days after she went into the MTC. Even though she had been gone only a short time, we were anxiously waiting to hear how she was doing!

Dear Family,
I survived my first day at the MTC! Actually, it was wonderful! My companion is Zuster Fritz who I had met a couple of months ago at Katie Jenkins' farewell and we get along really well. She already has a lot of the language down because she has been studying German for the past 3 years at BYU and German and Dutch are very similar. She will definitely be teaching me a lot.

After you dropped me off I went to orientation until 9:15 with dinner time in there somewhere. I still don't remember everything they taught us but I did feel the spirit of missionary work and I can't wait to dive into the language!

My branch presidency is awesome! President Lofferty, President Creer, and President Chamberlain and their wives spent time teaching us basic rules and the importance of obedience. They called Zuster Fritz as the senior companion and I am the junior companion. I know I will learn a lot from her!

The top 5 things that I have learned so far at the MTC are as follows:
1. They do have enough hangers for ALL of my stuff
2. The cafeteria food isn't that bad
3. The showers are really clean (which is good since I forgot my shower flip-flops)
4. Everyone is very nice...especially the senior missionaries
5. The church is even more amazing than I ever knew!

I know this is a short letter and I promise to write again when I get a chance! I love you and miss you but I know this is where the Lord needs me! Thanks for your prayers, love, and support! I read my first letter tonight and it gave me so much comfort and happiness! Write to you soon!

Zuster Sharp

Saying Goodbye at the MTC

With the new curbside drop-off, there was hardly time to say goodbye, let alone shed any tears. The excitement of missionary work was definitely in the air.

Farewell Lunch

The family met at Training Table for a farewell lunch before Lauren headed to the MTC. It was a bittersweet occasion as everyone said their goodbye's.