Hey Everyone!
This is my blog about all the activities and details about my mission. My folks are going to be updating it weekly, based on the information that I send them through my letters. My current address:
Elder Brigham James Merrell
MTC Mailbox # 138
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT 84604-1793

Sunday, May 16, 2010

May 14, 2010

Dear Family,
I love it here in the MTC. It's odd, it's like another world here, and yet, when we step outside to play on the field, or go to the temple, I'm home. Elder Holland came and spoke to us on saturday night. I got there an hour early, and was able to sit three rows away from him. It was amazing. He told us that going on a mission was EVERYTHING to him. He was determined that we stick it out to the end. He stopped in mid-sentence, and told us that the spirit told him that someone was thinking about going home early. He told us, "Don't you dare." He started out loud, but his voice choked up on the word "dare." It was very moving. He told us he wouldn't let us go, and that every good thing that has happened in his life, has come from his going on a mission. The life here is pretty repetitive. But not unpleasant. It's a very easy schedule: Get up, eat. Class, eat. Gym, class, eat. Class, Bedtime. Muy Bien. Yo se que el don de lenguas es realmente. Y que padre celestial me ama. siento su espiritu todos los dias. Agradezco por mi familia y por su amor para mi. Yo se que Jose Smith fue un profeta, y que Tomas S. Monson es un profeta actual. Yo se que la iglesia es verdadera y que Jesucristo expio por nuestros pecados. I love being here, and the spirit that fills my life daily. This week we got to teach actual investigators, and had to talk to them for the first 15 minutes in spanish. It was...rough. but we got through it. The actual lesson was in english, and it went really well. Elder Mcconnell and I were the smoothest ones in the lessons with great analogies and thought-provoking questions. I only have a minute left, so I have to wrap this up, before the computer kicks me off.

May 14, 2010

It really is awesome. My companion and I are still discovering all of the things we have in common, and we are loving it. We have a thing called "companionship Inventory" and it is used to resolve weaknesses, and encourage strengths. We don't have anything but respect for each other and are doing well. I am supposed to give a talk in church this sunday in spanish. It'll be on humility and it WILL be awesome. :) I'm happy for lindsay and ellie. I wish I could see her. I have discovered that I am running a little low on garments, as well as on funds. If you could mail me a check for...$20 dollars, I can cash it here. I went to the temple this morning to do endowments, and found out that the breakfasts in the cafeteria aren't free and we'll be going every week. Ah! But it was still amazing. I also need the money for photos. I printed off 30 today, and am mailing them to you guys. It cost me $4.50, but I think it'll be worth it. :) How is Devin doing? I know cassie misses me, but I haven't really heard about Dev. I'll keep you posted. I can send an email every friday. Love you!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

May 9,2010

Dearest Family (haha),
How is everyone? Over here, across the street, it feels so different and the time flies. I have learned so much in...4 days? wow. It feels like it's already been a week. The first day, we pretty much just went through an orientation. After I left you all, I went to my dorm to drop off my stuff, which I did, and then went to my classroom. There we met our companions. My companion is Elder James Farrell Mcconnell. He is just like me. We share a lot of the same interests, we can both enjoy silence while retaining a smart sense of humor, and we both have seen the same random youtube videos. We talk a lot, but not a lot of words are shared between us. We feel that close. I have been learning spanish rapidly, having it shoved down my throat at an alarming rate! I already know how to pray and bear my testimony, and I can barely get through the first discussion in Spanish--same thing with my companion. I am very grateful for him and his quiet dignity. However I can't say the same for the other missionaries in my district. They're all great, and I treasure all of their company, but what I'm referring to, is their ability to speak Spanish. So, yesterday while we were in our classroom doing language study, I went up to the front of the class and taught the basics of Spanish for two hours because our teacher, Hermana Burns, assumes too much about their capability for Spanish.
Our district leader, Elder Ronfeldt, is huge and muscly. But he is modest and always takes time for everyone. He is also mine and Elder Mcconnell's roommate. As I said earlier, I enjoy everyone's company here. It's been a while since I last met someone new, and meeting all of these faithful young men that have the same ambitions as me, is such a blessing. I was called to be the senior companion in our companionship, and am doing my best to set an example. I haven't really had time to iron all of my shirts mom, so I iron one a night before bed. I also have to shave at night, because a half hour is not enough to get my turn in the shower, iron, shave, and brush my teeth(which I'm also doing frequently). Let me just say that the beds here are heavenly! They are the perfect hardness, and they are about 7 ft. long. Muy bien! And the Cafeteria is just like any cafeteria. But the food here is much more diverse and delicious. They have soft drink dispensers...along with fruit juice, milk, chocolate milk, and powerade dispensers. It's a buffet, you can have as much as you want, but only one entree at a time to ensure the proper usage of food, so none is wasted. My day is this: Wake up, shower, dress, brush teeth and hair, then we go to personal study in our classroom. Then we have breakfast for a half hour, and then we return to the classroom for companionship study. Then we have class until lunch. After lunch, depending on the day, we have gym or class. If we have class first, then we have gym after dinner, which comes after the afternoon class session. After gym, we have more class, and then we go plan out the next day (which at this point consists of copying the printed schedule into our handheld schedules that I love). I love having a companion with me, especially one as cool as mine. We actually were asked to go in, and take a language evaluation test, to see is we needed to move up a level. I told them afterward that I really didn't want to move up. I had vocab, but I'm pretty sure my grammar is horrendous! haha. I got two letters, one from a 14-year old girl that is the sister-in-law of one of my jamba co-workers. I had told her goodbye, on facebook, a few days before I left, and her letter was the first to arrive. Yesterday, I got a letter from Kevin, saying I was the reason he got his call. He told me he would have kept on procrastinating putting them in, if I hadn't kept pushing, and he was thanking me for it. I love the spirit here, I love the language. I have a thirst for education that I haven't felt in a long time, and it is being slowly satisfied. I am now thinking in spanish everytime I hear a word that I know, and I find myself deleting spanish words out of this letter, even as I'm typing it. From now on, my p-days will be on friday, at least as long as I'm in the MTC. I'm scheduled to depart to Chile on July 5th. So far today, we practiced teaching the first discussion(in english), and my companion and I spent a half-hour on the first two points out of 5. I don't think teaching for a set time will be a problem for us. I miss everyone. It wasn't so bad at first, but as i was writing in my journal the first night, I remembered daddy hugging me, and pulling away with wet eyes. I keep thinking that I'm home, and that I'll see you guys in a little while, but I'm not. I keep thinking "I'll look it up on the internet (not my iphone)" but I can't. It'll be okay, and I can't wait to help the people of Chile. Know that I am well, and our separation will be but a short season. I love you!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Hey Everyone!
This here, is my fancy new blog set up in attractive electric-lime green. Or at least that's how I would like to describe the template that was randomly chosen by my friendly Blog setup. I'll be leaving on my mission this wednesday, and am excited to serve the Lord. My mom will be making regular updates to the blog while I am away, so hang in there. Thank you for all of your support, and I hope that you will each have the spirit in every minute of your life. Happy Sabbath!