Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Week 4: TATER TOTS!!

Hello Everyone!!

Good week this week, lots of happy moments. The two Cebuano districts left on Tuesday which was sad, it was a lot of fun having them here and I'll miss them a lot. The new districts got here on Wednesday and they're full of fun people. Along with people leaving, our teacher Brother Rutherford left for Jerusalem after working at the MTC for three years and he was the one that played our first investigator. He was for sure a spiritual giant and we've missed him a lot but he's going to spend an amazing three months in Jerusalem. 

Things are going well with classes, we are progressing with our "investigators" and got a new one this week, "Loreto" who is mysteriously also Bro. Meek. It's actually funny because I get so serious when I teach but Brother Meek asks such ridiculous questions when we're teaching that even HE cracks a smile so I start laughing while explaining why we use bread for the sacrament and not potato chips. Dang it Loreto!! Also Brother Meek told us this crazy story about him building these covered wagon camping things and got run over by one. These things are like a thousand pounds and one went over his shoulder but to this day he doesn't have any complications. CRAZY. 

The best thing about the food here is that about twice a week for breakfast they have tater tots. Tater tots are really the best thing ever and they always start my morning right. Also cool thing: the Nashville Tribute Band came as our devotional on Sunday and the MTC choir got to sing with them, it was pretty awesome. I also got to see my cousin Elder Reid before he peaced out for Australia, it was mega awesome!! But I had to keep saying to the staring missionaries "He's my cousin!!!" because you're not allowed to hug missionaries that aren't family members. Anyways, fun to see him before he was off!

Last words for this week are that the elders in our zone are pretty awesome. We all get along so well and they're so much fun to be around, they've definitely made the stay at the MTC awesome! I even have secret handshakes with some of them, they're just amazing. It'll be hard to say goodbye to them all in just two weeks! Anyways, that's pretty much it for this week. I'm learning more and more each class time and loving the mission so much! Definitely one of the best life decisions I've made so far. 

I've loved my time here and my testimony has grown so much more being here and seeing the devotion thatthousands of other missionaries have to serve the Lord and move His work forward. Kabalo ako nga matuod ang ebanghelyo!!! 

Have an awesome week every one!!! Plangga kita sang Dios!!! 

Sister Pope

1) Elder Okerland and Elder Lee, they're awesome and always talk in british accents while speaking Ilonggo HA


2) Finally a district picture with everyone in our district!! (plus Elder Lee and Elder Glenn) 


3) There's this dumb game here where if you shoot a fake blowdart to someone they have to get down on one knee and can only get back up if you touch their shoulder. Elder Gonzalez was really milkin it with Elder Maughn and asked me to take this picture of them haha. Elders are so weird


4) Me and Stir Fry!!!!! I'm gonna miss having my cousin here so much


Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Week 3: DANG IT SATAN!!

Hey Everyone! 

So the entire MTC and BYU servers shut down on Monday during our email time so I wasn't able to send pictures and email back everyone but it's all good. This week has just gone by SO fast!! I don't even know where to start, I feel like my mind goes blank as soon as I open up a new email haha. Best news this week is that Sister Garrish's foot is looking good to we're thinking she'll be able to come out with us on Sep. 7th!! Raise the roof! My district has been the bomb looking out for us and being really friendly, they always wait for us when we go to meals and carry Sis. Garrish's scooter thing down the stairs so I don't have to. It's the BEST. Meals here have been.. bad haha. There are so many missionaries here that we have to wait in line for like thirty minutes at every meal IF they don't run out of food, then it's cereal for dinner. It's been fine though, we get enough which is what's important. 

I'm learning a lot in class but having a hard time with the sentence structure. In Ilonggo, they start with the verb, then the focus, then the object and then the location. So everything is like "go we cafeteria". Also something funny we learned that to say "The people killed Jesus" you say Ginpatay ni JesuCristo ang mga tawo" but if you say "Ginpatay si Jesucristo sang mga tawo" you say "Jesus Christ killed the people" WHOOPSIE. I said it accidentally in the lesson and the investigator looked horrified haha whoopsies. Our teachers tell us to think like cavemen and that's been helping a little bit haha. We've learned a few gestures this week too and they taught me the lip thing where you point to something with your lips. Bro. Meek does it ALL the time on accident it's so funny. 

Sister Cherry, Sister Pito and Sister T leave this week :( They're awesome and so funny, I'll miss them a lot. My favorite thing to do with them is our evening prayer, we say it in the language we're learning and then whoever said the prayer says something nice about everyone before we go to bed so we're always ending the day right. They leave on Wednesday :(( I got called to Sister Training Leader though with Sister Gonzales and Sister Garrish so we got to take care of the girls coming in on Wednesday!! Wooo!!

Highlight of this week has been blaming everything on Satan haha. I took off my shoes when we got back to the residence one night and Sister Gonzales said "WHOA that smells awful DANG IT SATAN!!" it makes me laugh SO HARD every time haha she's the best. 

Wow I really can't think of anything else other than just going to class, eating (or maybe not...), and sleeping. Thanks to everyone for the emails and loves, I really appreciate them! You guys rock!!! 

Sister Pope

1) This is the zone leaders wallpaper on their phone... yes that is Elder Mills


2) So 500 spoons are missing from the MTC cafeteria and nobody can find them... #MTCprobs


3) Our district! Minus Elder Kortus and Elder Charters, they were very lost that day haha. It goes Elder Green, Elder Robins, Elder Taufa (not in our district.. photobomb haha), Elder Mills, Elder Brown, Elder Mahaffey, Elder Kelly, Me!!, Sister Garrish, and Sister Gonzales. They're all AWESOME!!!


4) Elder Green and Elder Robins, the new zone leaders!!!!!


5) Elder Glenn and Elder Matsen in our district, everytime we see them we just say KUU-MOO-STAAAHH!! 


Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Week 2: SUBONG!

Kamusta everyone! 

It feels weird to be typing on this computer right now, I've already been sucked into the time warp that is the MTC. People are not kidding when they say days drag on FOREVER and then the whole week is gone and you're wondering where the time went. It's crazy! But all and all the time I've had here has been amazing. The language has been coming along well but I've learned something tricky about it. I thought that Hiligaynon and Ilonggo where the same language but apparently they are pretty different. They speak Ilonggo in Bacolod and it's completely based off Hiligaynon, but it has spanish and cebuano influences in it whereas all of Hiligaynon is it's own words. So there's a lot our teacher tries to correct and fix when he's teaching. He'll say stuff like "well the book says this but really everyone says..." It's kind of frustrating because we can't study ahead since everything is pretty much wrong but God know that I need to be more patient and I'm trying. 

We didn't do a whole lot this week, it's really just a cycle of exercise, food, class, food, study, class, food, study. We got a new "investigator" this week and we'll be teaching her on Wednesday. Sometimes I have dreams where I get to teach my investigators in English. They're never reality. HA. It's cool though because the language sounds so amazing. We get to do sessions at the temple on our p-day too which has been awesome, especially with the other missionaries. It was fine at St. Louis but there were only a bunch of old people in our sessions (not the I don't love old people, I do, they're amazing); it was just nice to have some people my age.

The food here is a time-food warp too because some mornings I feel SO fat in my clothes and by the end of the day I swear I've lost ten pounds. The MTC really is a magical place kiddos!!! 

I leave off on two funny singing stories: we have exercise in the morning so it's only my two companions and the other three sisters in our zone in there and they ALWAYS ask me to sing songs and one of the sisters from Samoa wants me to sing the National Anthem haha she's so cute. But anyways, the sister from Tahiti, Sister Pito, only knows the first part of the Jurassic Park theme song and she'll have random words go along with the tune and she'll just sing it over and over. She's too cute. Also, my companion Sister Gonzales sings the hymn "Today, While the Sun Shines" but instead of saying "today" on the chorus, she'll sing the ilonggo word for "now" and sing at the top of her lungs "SUBONG! SUBONG! WORK WITH A WILL!" It makes me laugh everytime and she gets it stuck in the whole district's head. HA. She's such a gift. 

Anyways, that's about it for this week. I think I might've said this last week but this Elder at the MTC keeps getting my DearElders. His name is Elder Alec Pope. FUNNY. He gets my mail but doesn't send it back to me and just throws it away. NOT FUNNY. I got all of them starting from last Tuesday though (because I spoke strongly at him during a mission conference and couldn't yell) so I should be able to get them now. Thank you all so much for your support and caring! It means the world. Talk to you all next week! Palangga taka! 

Love,
Sister Pope

1) All the elders in our class had to do push ups because... actually I can't remember why haha but Elder Green did 50!!


2) My name tag <3 <3 I love to see the temple


3) Us by the Philippines!!! Three more weeks.


4) Sister Gonzales is from the Philippines and brought this fan with her. Literally its the only things that keeps me alive when we sit outside for PCL.



Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Week 1: MTC AND MY DISTRICT

HELLO EVERYONE!!!

It's been my first week at the MTC and it's been just so crazy I can hardly believe it. I was beginning to believe that p-day would never come haha. We got to do laundry and things today though so it's all maayo! First couple of days was tough, especially having no idea what my teacher is saying to me mostly all of the time but it's all around been an awesome experience. DISCLAIMER: Missions are really hard. But I'm learning to humble myself and get into the work without thinking about myself too much. 

I got put into a trio companionship with Sister Garrish and Sister Gonzalez since we're the only three sisters in our district and then the only three of six in our entire zone. Lots of boys. 18 year old, silly, dumb boys. But incredibly spiritual and very helpful in learning the language. (one of them asked me what dryer sheets were and if you put them in the washer or dryer. WHO RAISED YOU?!!?) On the third day out here when we had exercise time, Sis. Garrish landed on her foot wrong and broke it. Dang it right?? So please please PLEASE send your prayers towards her. Her foot is in a boot right now and we need all the time at the MTC for her to heal and then some miracle for her to come out to the Philippines with us because if things don't work out, she'll have to go back home to get surgery and then come back in two months and we SO don't want that. (unless that's what's supposed to happen, but we want her to come with us).

You all could've expected this, but my teacher speaks in mostly/all hiligaynon which made my mind explode the first day but I've actually learned so much. Everyone here asks if I learned the language before (why yes actually I took hiligaynon in high school???). It's fun though. My companions make fun of me a lot that I have a connection to everyone here and I think it's true. People will tell me where they're from or where they're going and I've either been there or know someone there. I actually met someone at the gym that grew up in Arvada and was childhood friends with my roommate's husband, Kevin. HA. Our first lesson with an "investigator" was on Friday and I almost cried/threw up after it I was so upset with myself and frustrated haha. I couldn't say anything I wanted to and if you speak in English the investigator pretends like he doesn't understand you and it's really hard BUT we had our second lesson on Monday and our lesson was AMAZING. He read the Book of Mormon and we committed him to baptism *fist pump* I know it's just an actor but I was still SO happy. Also my left toe has been numb the whole week I've been here, even when I'm not wearing shoes and it's freaking me out. If anyone can tell me what that is please let me know so I can convince myself I don't have some debilitating disease haha. 

On the rest of the days, we just have six hours of class and then four hours of PCL (personal, companion, language study) and it's helped me to SYL (speak your language) a lot. Also I saw Kyle and Nick at the temple on Sunday! It was such a tender mercy since I had hoped to see them all week and they just happened to have their time at the temple be the same as mine. They're doing amazing in Chinese and can't wait till we're all out in Asia. All and all, I'm so happy to be here and cannot wait for my roommates to get their mission calls!! Seriously so proud of them. Also mega shout-out to Morgan Higdon and Elizabeth Melby. Their letters kept me alive this week fr. I cried haha. Also thank you to my family who wrote me DearElders, I love getting those so much. 

Anyways, to close, here's a few things I learned this week:
- I am really bad at volleyball
- the Lord makes you be humble when you need to learn something
- I have amazing friends that email me
- the sisters in my zone keep me goin 
- hiligaynon is really hard 

Other than that, I have a zillion pictures to share so enjoy! I miss you all so much and love you all. Also I've gotten a couple emails asking for my address so here it is:

Sister Alyssa Pope
SEP-14 PHI-BAC
2005N 900E UNIT 115
PROVO, UT 84602

Kabalo ako nga matuod and Libro ni Mormon kag buhi ni JesuCristo. (wrote that from memory yay!!! It says I know the book of mormon is true and Jesus Christ lives) Love you guys!!! Until next week. 

Sister Pope 


1) Sister Gonzalez, Sister Garrish and I getting ready for the day


2) Our awesome teacher brother Meek!!



3) Our district leader, Elder Mills


4) Sister Gonzalez saying her evening prayers under a blanket. She feel asleep under there hahaha.


5)Roomies/companions!!! From right to left: Sister Cherry, Sister Pito, Sister Tagage, me, Sister Gonzalez and Sister Garrish. I'll write more about them next week when I have more time.


6) Me and Sister T!! She lets me hug her everyday and says "If you fight, I fight. If you go home, I go home". She's the best


7) Elders from our Zone! On the left is Elder Green and on the right is Elder Glenn. Both awesome guys.


8) Best part of the week by far!!! Loved running into these guys at the temple, especially with Elder Daines leaving just today. 


9) fanning myself off with the "Our Purpose" poster. I'm going to die in the Philippines haha.