Dearest Panimalay kag mga Abyan,
I'm halfway done with training? What? I've been living halfway around the world for 6 weeks?? Where did all that time go?
I don't care what anyone says. 23C (72F or so) is Cold. I haven't seen the sun in 3 weeks or so. So while you all deal with 0 F weather, I'm glad I'm not where you are! (seriously. I'm so glad I'm going home in the spring/summer. I think I would become an ice-cube if I came home in the winter.)
Transfers were Thursday. I wasn't transferred (in the middle of training. . .) pero, Sister Lewis was! We were sad to see her go! But knew she was going where the Lord needs her. When Sister Marticio came home we asked "Where's Sister Lewis?". She just chuckled, and said that she's followup training Sister Nitura. Which means she's still in our same zone (There are three districts in our zone). And is literally in the only other sister companionship in our zone! So we'll all be seeing her tomorrow at district meeting :)
As a mission we're reading the Four Standard Works, and are to be finished by Christmas. I've gotten to the point of, "And then Aaron and his sons... ...." For sacrifices. It's kinda like reading a manual, it's interesting, but monotonous. (but hey. I actually really love it.) An hour is NOT enough time for personal study! Can I study all day instead?
I've actually been asked a lot "How is the Language going?" Haha, guess I haven't written about that.
Sooo.... Hiligaynon is great! I love the way it sounds and the way it rolls of the tongue! I'm not picking up the accent (most likely) But I am picking up the Sing-Song-i-ness of it. It's really hard to explain, but it's influencing my English. (For example, I enunciate words differently now). It's getting much easier to teach, and it's getting to the point where when I speak it isn't rote memorization, but my own words :)
I still have an easier time speaking that I do listening. Funny how that works. Sometimes I'll just look at a person and then turn to Sister Massé because I have no idea what they've said.
I also don't understand their very accented English (Though many here have very good English), because I'm expecting Ilonggo, so I don't realize their speaking English to me, so I'm trying to translate, and I get lost. hahaha, I'm sure that's how some of them feel when I speak their language. :)
It's really funny, I can speak perfect English to my housemates, or fellow missionaries, but if I meet a native English Speaker on the street (it happens) it is So HARD to speak English to them. It generally goes along the lines of:
"Kamusta ka, Brother? um... How are. . .you? kamusta ang adlaw mo? kamusta your day? umm... ano ang name mo?" it's gets all mixed up! haha. There's an American that lives in our area that we see a lot, and every time we see him it's "Maayong Gab-i!" "I don't know what that means!" "It means Hello/Goodnight"
We had Zone Training Meeting instead of District Meeting last week. IT WAS GREAT. I love my zone, they're all so spiritual (haha, way to state the obvious Sister Smith) and strong in their testimonies. I learned so much from them :) We had a great training from our Zone Leaders (Elders Singley and Shingleton. I always mix up their names into one on accident. Like Shingly, or Singleyton.) We learned about having Desire, Being Obedient, and Enduring! And basically becoming the best missionaries we can be, being the missionaries our investigators deserve to hear the gospel from. It was Great :)
I'm so happy to hear about Sister Taylor! If she reads these, CONGRATULATIONS SARAH! You'll love Russia :)
I got all that Christmas Mail :) It officially takes 4/4.5 weeks for mail to get here! (So plan accordingly?) So it only took about 2.5 weeks for mail to get to you? Alright! Good to know! We've now got a system figured out!
Palangga ko kamo! Kabalo ako nga Matuod ang Simbahan!
- Sister Smith
If anyone is curious, I still am drawing when I have a few minutes of "Me time." (though normally I read the Missionary Library, or catch up on journal-ling. Can you believe I've been good and journaled every night for the past 3 months? Can you believe it will be three months in three days?)
But Flower pictures are good gifts :) And I owed Sister Lewis her Christmas present.
|Sister Lewis and Dahlia|