Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Week 4~Birds & Bats

This week was interesting to say the least.

But first, a lot of you wanted to hear the bird story. So just be prepared for a longer email than usual.

The four of us sisters had gone outside to do our personal study. We all said our individual prayers to begin our study and Sister Carleton got done saying her prayer first. She was just looking around and then heard a strange sound, like something hit a window. She looked over at the building and saw a small bird spiral down to the ground because it had ran into the window (Kinda like a Windex commercial). After we were done, she told us what happened. So I go over there to check it out because really who wouldn't? It appeared that one of the wings was broken and it leg was also hurt. We thought it was dead. So I started talking to it in Portuguese and Sister George named it Frank. All of a sudden, it woke up and jolted a little.Then,, after a good two minutes of looking at us,the bird flew right at Sister George and over my head and missed us by about an inch. I think I saw my life flash before my eyes.

Anyway, this week was the Mission President Seminar, which means all the new mission presidents who are going to their new missions in July were here for training. We got to have President and Sister Melo come teach us for two days and it was sweet. They're from Manaus Brazil and have thick accents, but they are the sweetest people. It makes me excited for Brazil, even if people aren't so nice. 

President and Sister Melo

Because of the Mission President Seminar, General Authorities have been here and we're supposed to be getting a devotional by one of them tonight, whoop whoop. I don't know who yet, but I'll let you know. Anyway, last Tuesday a lot of the sisters, including us, switched buildings. It was a really nice, pretty new building. On Thursday, all the sisters were called into the gym for a special meeting. So everyone is freaking out because we had General Authorities on campus and everyone thought they were giving us a special devotional or something. Turns out that our new building we moved into had a bat problem and we had to move again. I guess I'm just that much more prepared for transfers. We also talked to the girls who had the bat problem in their room and apparently one of the girls woke up to a bat crawling on her in the middle of the night. Nasty! They were supposed to leave in a week, but have to stay an extra week to get rabies shots. Not fun at all.

Let's see, something I've learned this week: you can't grow in your comfort zone. And it really is true. I've learned so much here because I've been pushed. It's not always fun, but that's life. If you're doing it right. Haha

Oh also, this week we will be reassigned if we don't have our visas! We are supposed to find out this Thursday or Friday, but the Travel Office has been weird lately and they haven't been telling people until the Friday before we leave, so we'll see. Hooray!

Sister Lockhart
Me, Sister Hendrickson and Sister Rammell

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Week 3~The Gift of Tongues is Real...

My humble abode

Oi Everyone!

Tomorrow hits the 3 week mark of my stay at the MTC, which means only 3 more weeks to go. I think in about a week or two we will find out if our visas have come or if we're being reassigned. It's like getting a new mission call all over again, which is exciting.

This week was a lot better than last week. Sister Hall and I didn't forget any Books of Mormon this time for our lesson, so that was an improvement. Teaching is getting better as well. The neat thing about only teaching in Portuguese is you're forced to really simplify the lessons, which is good, because no one wants to hear a 45 minute lesson. And you can focus more on the investigator's needs.

The Portuguese is coming along for those who want to know. I'm not worried about the language. With study and practice it will come. And I really have learned so much. I mean, carrying on conversations and having discussions all in Portuguese and actually being able to understand people when they talk in just three weeks of being here....yeah, the gift of tongues is real...

I wish I had more interesting stories, but routine doesn't really change week to week in the MTC. One time a bird almost killed us. And one time I made a 3 pointer in basketball during gym time. That's about as crazy as it gets. 

We've been studying a lot about the Holy Ghost this week. You know what's cool? The Book of Mormon is the most correct book on this earth. And since the Holy Ghost testifies of truth, there's no way the Holy Ghost couldn't testify of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. Anyway, just a thought.

 Thanks for all the emails... until next time,

~Sister Lockhart

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Week 2~The Days are Going by Faster Now...

by Sister George

Dear friends and families,

First of all thanks for the emails
. It's nice hearing from people. Sometimes you forget there is an outside world to this place.

Each day at the MTC is kind of the same so it almost feels as if it's a blur. Luckily the days are going faster now. I've only been here two weeks, but it feels like 2 months.

3 Elders in our district left today. Two were already scheduled to leave because they had their visas, but then yesterday the third got a note from the travel office and basically was told he would be leaving also in under 24 hours. So now it's just 4 of us Sisters and our District Leader. We all feel pretty sorry for him.

3 elders from our district left this week

My companion and I met someone from São Paulo this week who lived right next to our mission I think. We told him where we were going and he gave us a few pieces of advice.
1) Do not leave your house after 7:30 pm
2) Avoid men with big coats
3) Avoid young men


We also talked to our Branch President and he says our mission isn't very much city like we thought it was going to be, but there is some if you go really far in. So that's pretty cool. We also had new Brazil Mission Presidents in our ward on Sunday and talked to a couple who said they knew our Mission President really well. Then they took a picture with us on their Ipad and sent it to him. It really is a small world sometimes.

As for teaching and Portuguese, teaching is hard and Portuguese is coming I guess. This week, one investigator asked for a Book of Mormon and we forgot to bring one. That was a rough day. It is also really hard when you're companion struggles a lot with the language so when you're teaching a lesson, it's like teaching by yourself. But I'm definitely glad that the Lord loves me enough to push me so that I can become better. Even when I don't really like it. How else would I be able to 
become better?

Thanks for all of your support!

Sister Lockhart
With Sister Carleton

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Week 1~They Say The First Week's the Toughest...

Oi Family & Friends,

I've pretty much finished my first week at the MTC.
The first week they say is the toughest week and I can see why. The first day at the MTC they send you right to your classroom to start learning your language. Our teacher won't speak any English with us so we have to pay close attention to understand what he's saying. I love it though; it's actually pretty fun. I've already dreamed in Portuguese which is weird, but cool. Our teacher is Irmao Workman. He has kind of a reputation for being the greatest teacher here and I can see why. He's awesome. We call him "the spiritual giant, but not really" because he's like 5'4. 

Our district is great too. My companion is Sister Hall and we actually met at BYU, which is pretty neat. I'm also rooming with Sister Carleton and Sister George. They are really great people, the only thing is I guess they weren't expecting how hard it would get so fast. Actually one Sister said she was just expecting the MTC to be like EFY. No Sister, not even close. We are constantly learning and in the same classroom for 10 hours each day, except Sundays.
​Anyway, in our district we are basically all the rejects who didn't get their visas yet. There are 4 of us sisters and 4 elders, except Elder Gibby and Elder Marsh got their visas this week so they leave next Tuesday. So maybe there's hope for all of us.

The hardest thing so far (other than being with a companion for 24/7) has been teaching. We started teaching only the 3rd day here, but we're only allowed to teach in all Portuguese. Here's how a few of the lessons went:

Lesson 1: When the investigator opened the door, we stood there for 10 seconds because we forgot how to invite ourselves in

Lesson 2: Had a lesson prepared but then changed it during the lesson to fit the investigator's needs, but we didn't prepare for that and didn't know how to say stuff so we mostly read from our help guide. Just use your imagination. It was rough.

Lesson 3: Lesson prepared on the Restoration. A little struggle with the language as usual  (Again, only our 6th day), but the Spirit was strong. Best lesson we've had. Not necessarily good, just better. 

My companion and I are terrible at planning. We are getting a lot better, though. Practice makes perfect, and trust me we get lots of practice. 

I guess I should end with something I've learned this week. I've learned a lot about faith and a lot about the Holy Ghost. I've noticed that during our lessons whenever I bear my testimony and the Holy Ghost is present, I am able to bear my testimony in Portuguese with ease. The words come to my mind and this just shows me how important the Holy Ghost is in this work.

And also that in order to to receive gifts of the Spirit, you must be prepared to receive them. 

Also, if you haven't already, you should listen to/read Elder Bednar's talk "The Character of Christ" (something like that). 

Here's my address while I'm here at the MTC for the next 5 weeks unless I get my visa before then:
Sister Jessica Lockhart

Or you could just email me. Or not do anything. That's cool too. Oh you can also send mail through DearElder.comwhich is really nice because I get it the same day you send it.

Sister Lockhart

Monday, June 8, 2015

Week 1~First Letter

Dear Family,

Made it to the MTC safe. 
I can't take it here.  It's awful and I want to come home... Just kidding, it's actually not as stressful as I thought it was going to be.  We are teaching a lesson tomorrow all in Portuguese and it is only our third day and that's the most stressful thing that is happening.  My companions/roommates are great! They all have strong testimonies and love the gospel.  Our district is awesome too.  We have a large one apparently consisting of four girls and four guys.  Also our branch president, counselors and wives are so awesome.  I think I lucked out.  So, that's about it.

Love, Jessica

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Day 1~Entering MTC

In Provo...one last trip to "In and Out" hee, hee:)
This is it!
"...a mission is something I've always wanted to do." 

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Jessica's Journey...

Selfie with mom and dad at airport.
 "I'm ready, I'm ready..."
President Lockhart... Proud papa got to set apart his girl... very emotional... 
Her visa to Brazil didn't arrive
 so she starts her journey at the 
Mission Training Center in Provo, Utah.
 Officially beginning June 3rd.
Brother Grames from our ward was on her flight.
  How cool is that:)

Jessica's Mission Call (January 2015)