Family! I love you so much! One tip - please don't email me at the MTC, I have basically no time on the computer and would like to spend it all trying to write you! Dear Elder is better, or letters.
Anyway, this week has been incredible! I'm learning at such a rapid pace, and I really feel the Czech coming. I'm so far from being able to communicate how I'd like, but I can teach many of the first principles we teach investigators and I can testify my heart out in Czech. Being in this pilot program, I've already lost count of how many lessons my companions and I have taught in Czech. We has our last meeting with our 1st investigator (Jakub) last week, and it was overall an extremely frustrating experience. However, as we taught this investigator over the last week and a half, we grew immensely as missionaries and as teachers. We were able to testify with meekness and great humility (you don't have a choice when you know how little you know!) and he finally committed to baptism. It's all a contrived situation with one of our teachers, but honestly, it's an incredible experience for us as missionaries, and for them as they are playing the role of someone they actually taught on their mission. We also had TRC this week! This is where volunteers come and missionaries are able to teach lessons they've been preparing all week (for us, we're pretty much teaching every day, so the TRC is just another lesson, but with real people, playing themselves). They've changed the TRC so that it's no longer scripted. People come and we teach them as they are, no matter if they are members or not. We had about 20 minutes warning about what we were going to be doing at TRC this last Thursday as they were rearranging some things, and so all we knew was that we were going to teach 2 20-minute lessons according to the needs of those we were going to meet! We were all so, so nervous, but so excited! Rarely have I felt so much emotion coursing through my body as I did that day. The whole district was reeling. We showed up and were walking through the hall to get the run down from our teacher, and we started hearing people saying Czech words.. starsi (elders), sestry (sisters)... we freaked out! There were so many volunteers for the Czech missionaries! A ton! Including 3 native Czechs who were here visiting! It was such an incredible experience. My companions and I ended up teaching several return missionaries, about 80% in Czech. 1 week in the MTC, and here we were, sharing the gospel with people and discussing what it means to all of us. I couldn't believe it. I felt like I was walking on clouds afterwards - I'm so grateful to be here, and so grateful for how apparent God's hand is in this work and in my progress as a missionary. The best part about TRC was when we had just finished one of our lessons and one of the Czech ladies came up to us, beaming, and said, "Sister missionary! The best! The best!" She spoke little English, but she helped me feel the love of each member in the Czech Republic. I couldn't go to sleep that night as I was thinking about the members, and how I just can't wait to meet them, speak with them, learn from them, and love and help them. I love being a missionary. Being at the MTC, I get up before 6 everyday (trying to cram in more of the mounds of things I need to learn), we spend about 6 hours in class each day, half an hour for each meal, 1 hour of personal study, about 2 hours of extra language study, comp study, more language study, district meetings, devotionals, zone meetings, contacting practice... it's so busy. I barely have any time, no - I have no time to think about anything but what is in front of me and what I need to learn next. One of the most frustrating parts of the MTC is that there is so much to learn and so much to do, but you have about 10% of the time you need to do it. Siostra Folsom and I tell each other every night how much we wish we didn't have to sleep or eat, but alas, we are merely mortals! And thus, the Lord is with us to help us do it all, for we cannot do it alone. I'm doing well. I love it here. Every day is a rollercoaster, but I can't even fathom doing anything else but this. This is gospel is amazing. The more I learn, the more I realize I don't know. However, I know what is important - I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior and that He died for me and performed that great Atonement that is so precious to me and to every child of God. I love you all!
Sestra Lucy Brimhall