Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Week 6 in the MTC

Where is the time going!!! In 3 weeks from Thursday I'll be leaving for Taiwan! This week (6) has absolutely flown by!

My Chinese is getting so much better and I'm just amazed! I spoke only Chinese on Friday (well, up until about dinner...) and it was just amazing how much I was able to say! Our lessons have been going great, and I definitely feel the Lord's help every day in learning the language! I've also started working a bit on characters (recognizing more so than writing) and I love doing that too!

So I mentioned last week that we had a fire alarm go off. Turns out it was a heat detector that malfunctioned, causing the alarm to go off, but all was resolved. Later that day, the MTC had us watch an earthquake preparedness video, which really got us all freaked out. We found out later that night that it was a State-wide mandated video watching =] But! I still encourage all of you to check your 3-day supply of food and water and make sure you have a first aid kit and flashlights handy! So important to be prepared!

Big news!!! Our second "Investigator" Zhang1 Jie3 Mei4 is getting baptized! We were struggling with how to help her understand how the gospel can bless her life now, and so we read "The Family: A proclamation to the world" and that seemed to really hit with her. She loved it! She actually said her favorite part was about how husbands should preside over the family and take care of their family. Her husband works a lot and she understands how important it is to have him involved in their family, so our next goal is to get her husband to meet with us. We gave her a Book of Mormon to give to her husband, so we'll see how that went. She is getting "baptized" on May 5. And Wei4 Di4 Xiong1 is getting baptized this Saturday! He also brought a friend with him two meetings ago (last Friday) and so we taught his friend then, and again yesterday (Monday), but he is "going" to Shanghai today, so we won't be able to meet with him again. But we were just so excited! Having his friend there gave Wei4 Di4 Xiong1 the opportunity to share his testimony and allowed us to see how his testimony has been growing! Such an amazing thing!

We started on a new schedule yesterday. They are going to be tearing down one building, and they just completed a new one, so every missionaries schedule changed. Its ok, not too bad. We don't go to the temple in the morning anymore, we go in the afternoon, which I guess is ok, but I really liked going early morning. It was nice to start preparation day off by going to the temple =]

We were called to the travel office yesterday to sign our visa applications...which means they haven't got our visas yet...which worries me, since we are leaving in 3 weeks!!! I hope they are able to get them on time! We also have 25 new missionaries coming tomorrow! 8 sisters and 17 elders! We are so excited!!!!! We also have an ADL (advanced Chinese) sister who will be joining our branch this week or next, and departing with us (she is also going to Taizhong!) so chances are, our trio companionship will be split up, and my branch president said, chances are, he will put her with me, which will be just fine =] I've met her and talked with her, and I really like her, and I think we'd get along great! So we'll see! I'll let you know next week for sure!

I also have two friends here in the MTC right now! Sister Evans is going to Detroit, Michigan. She and I were in the same freshman ward (she will be leaving the MTC next week) and Sister Carter, who was in my ward last year and lived across the hall from me =] She is going to Bangkok, Thailand. We have the same schedule and our classrooms are on the same floor so I see her often. It is so fun having people I know in the MTC!

We had Sis. Ann M Dibb, 2nd Counselor in the YW General Presidency (and President Monson's daughter!) speak to us in Relief Society this week! She is so amazing and I loved everything she had to say! She brought a lot of counsel from the prophet for us, and I loved receiving that!

Last Tuesday, we had Elder Larry Gibbons of the Seventy come and speak to us! He talked a lot about the importance of involving members in the work and how important it is!! SO! Here is my invitation/challange to all of you: I invite you all to have the missionaries over, and invite a non-member friend or family member over as well, and facilitate a meeting between your friend/family member and the missionaries. I know how important it is to refer our friends and family to the missionaries and how important it is to be a member missionary! I hope you will all accept the invitation and have the missionaries and a non-member friend or family member over as well. I know your family will be blessed for your missionary efforts! If you aren't a member of the church, I invite you to go and find out a little bit more about why I am serving a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know this is the only church on Earth that has the fulness of Christ's Gospel. I know that we have a Heavenly Father who loves us and wants us to be happy. I know that we can live with our families forever. If you didn't know that you can live with our families forever, I encourage you to go to and find out about why we believe we can be with our families forever!

I love you all and I am so grateful to be a missionary for the Lord! I am learning and growing so much and I can't wait to get to Taiwan and share everything that I have to share with the people there! They are my brothers and sisters, and I want them to be able to know what I know.

Thank you all for your letters! They mean so much to me! Thank you for the love, support and prayers. I feel them all the time and I know they bouy me up!

Love you all!
-Sister Busath

MTC Box #107
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT 84604

Write me =]

Week 5 in the MTC

Wowza! I have been in the MTC for 5 weeks already!!! And today is my 1 month till Taiwan birthday! I am so excited!!!
Exciting things from the week are as follows:
1) Our investigator, Wei4 Di4 Xiong1 has said he will get baptized!!! He is a little worried he won't be prepared for his April 28th baptism, but he is willing to do all he can to prepare! We have been teaching him the commandments, and he has been willing to accept them all! He thinks its a little weird to not drink tea, but since we extended him the committment, he hasn't had any tea! So wonderful!!! We are so excited for him! (for anyone who is a little confused, he isn't a "real" investigator, it is our teacher role playing as an investigator, but we strive to make everything as real as possible). I can't wait to get to Taiwan and have real investigators say they will be baptized!!!
Our other investigator Zhang1 Jie3 Mei4 isn't progressing as well. We are struggling a little to help her understand why the gospel is relevent in her life today, and not in the next life, but we hope we can have her committed to baptism by next week!
2) On Sunday, for our fireside, Elder M. Russell Ballard came! This was the third apostle we've had since I've been here (Elder Oaks and Elder Packer have also come). It was so great! I loved it! Also at that fireside, Elder David Archuleta sang! I was hoping he would sing before he left. He sang the Spirit of God and it was so beautiful! He sang a verse in Spanish (he is going to the Chile Renagua Mission) and he totally teared up at the end of that verse, and even more so at the end of the song, but it was so beautiful and I'm grateful he shared his talents with us while he was here. He left yesterday (Monday) for his mission to Chile. For the closing song of the devotional we all sang a really neat version of Called to Serve. Oh boy was that powerful! They likened us to the Strippling Warriors and it was just so neat!!!
3) We are getting 6 new missionaries tomorrow! They are ADL missionaries (advanced something language) and they already are fluent in Chinese. Not native, just fluent. They've been in the MTC (we think) for 3 weeks already doing Englishl and then will be with us (we think) for 3 weeks doing Chinese, then off to their missions! Then next Wednesday we get a huge group of new missionaries!!! I've also met several sisters and an elder recently who are going to Taiwan Taichung that aren't coming in till July, so that is fun!
4) My companions and I and one other sister from our district sang in church on Sunday. We sang Love at Home. It was pretty good, seeing as we didn't really practice much =]
5) The best: We were rudely woken up this morning at 1:30 AM to a lovely fire alarm. We all bolted out of bed and were like, that's not someone's alarm...thats a fire alarm! I grabbed my shoes, a jacket, my watch, name tag and ID badge and my coordinating sisters binder because it had evacuation procedures in it. We all got out, and were waiting in front of the gym and a security guard asked us all if we knew what happened. We said no (which means it wasn't a drill) and then he asked if we saw smoke or fire, which we also responded no. He let us in the gym (which is thankfully right across from our residence) and were there about 10 minutes when they let us back in. So, no fire, just had to wake up at 1:30 am =]
Well, I know this is a bit of a short letter, but I didn't take very good notes this week about what to share, and I can't think of anything else to share. I'll end with a little spiritual note, since I forgot last week. This week I've been reading the first 4 or so chapters in Mosiah, which is King Benjamin's address to his people. I had never really studied it before, and I am just so engrossed in it!! I love it! The words he speaks to the people, telling them about repentance and about coming to Christ, and about the coming of Christ, I just love it all! I would encourage you all to read it! Also, Alma 32 was another section I read this week. This one is all about faith. I was really reminded that having faith isn't having a perfect knowledge of things, for if it was, then we wouldn't need to have faith in anything. It also helped me to remember that it is so important to have faith, for without it, we won't have much of a testimony, and it is so important to have a testimony. So many things that we believe, we believe because of faith. So I also encourage and invite you all to read Alma 32 and see how you can work on increasing your faith.
Thank you all for your love, support, prayers and letters!!! I love each and everyone of them, and am always so grateful that you take time out of your busy days to write me. You don't know how much that means to me!!
Love you all and have a great week!!
-Sis. Busath
MTC Box 107
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT 84003
Write me! I'd love it =]

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Week 4 in the MTC

Wow! Am I really done with week 4?! We have been here for almost 1 month, and have 1 month left to go!!
This past week has been a great week! Lots of great times!
1) Chinese: Well, it's finally gotten hard. I definitely am not moving through it as fast as I was when I first got here, so that just means I need to work harder, since I still have so much to learn! I bore my testimony in Sacrament meeting last week, in Chinese! It was great =] We have taught the first three lessons in Chinese now, though we break them up so we don't all have to learn all the vocab right away, so I don't know quite all the vocab, but as far as teaching a lesson goes, I can get through any lesson, minus using correct grammar =]
2) Our mu dao you men (investigators!): We are teaching two "investigators", Wei4 Di4 Xiong1 and Zhang1 Jie3 Mei4. Both are progressing really well! We invited both to be baptized last week, and while neither said yes, they didn't say no either. We will be asking Wei4 Di4 Xiong1 again tomorrow, and we have high hopes that he will say yes. He is really progressing well! Zhang1 Jie3 Mei4 came to church with her boys again last Sunday and she enjoyed it and her boys are beginning to make friends! She is definitely getting closer to being baptized as well. It is such a neat experience to be teaching investigators, even if they are just our teachers, but for me, I really take the experience seriously and don't look at them as my teachers, but as real investigators. I can't wait to get to Taiwan and to begin teaching investigators!
3) 8 hours of sleep is so not enough: We are to be in bed at 10:30 and wake up at 6:30. We don't do so bad at this, which is great. The week before conference we were up at 6 because of Choir, so it's nice to be sleeping in till 6:30 again, though this is by far not enough sleep! I wonder how I'll feel when I get to Taiwan and I'm biking all day and teaching lessons all day, and not just sitting in a classroom all day =] It will be crazy! Though, I know the Lord will bless me with the energy that I need =] For this is His work, not mine, and I know He won't let me fail.
4) Chinese Sisters on our residence floor: We have two Chinese and two Taiwanese sisters on our residence floor and we love to talk with them! One in particular comes over often and we just talk and talk. She is serving her mission English speaking, so often she will speak English and we will speak Chinese back to her. She is a convert of two years, and so she told us her conversion story, and it was so great to listen to it in Chinese and to be able to understand her!!! That was so awesome!
5) Easter: Easter was a fast Sunday for us. Normally on Fast Sunday, we have a Mission Conference Sacrament Meeting at 10 AM, but because of Easter, we had it at 9 AM and we had President Packer and his son Elder Packer come and speak to us, as well as Elder David Evans of the 70, though he didn't speak to us. The choir sang "Precious Savior, Dear Redeemer" and it was a really cool rendition of it. Pres. Packer talked about the Savior and about His resurrection. One of my favorite things he said was that we are given trials to make us stronger. I whole-heartedly believe that! We can all come out of our trials stronger than we went into them! The rest of Easter we had a lot of study time, since we didn't have lunch. Then we had a district meeting, which I've equivated to Sunday School, as we have a lesson, then we had just a branch sisters meeting with our Branch President and his wife (where they told us that we shouldn't flirt with the elders...good thing we don't =] ). Then we went on the temple walk!
6) Temple Walk: It was a stunningly gorgeous Easter Day! We were so excited for the temple walk! This was only our second one, and conference weekend, it was cold and rainy, so this was super exciting! There were so many families out at the temple! Made me miss everyone. BUT! We were about 15 minutes away from leaving, and I had just been hoping to see someone I knew, and lo and behold, I saw a family that I lived in China with, The Gouffs! Sis. Gouff and her kids had come to the temple to get some Easter pictures! I was so excited to see them! Their son is in 2nd grade and in a Chinese immersion program, so my companions and I talked in Chinese with him a bit, and that was so much fun! I was so grateful to be able to see them =]
7) TRC: The TRC is the Training Resource Center. Members of the community, both LDS members and non-LDS members can come and volunteer to be taught a message. We go in and teach them, in Chinese! We were a bit nervous, not knowing who the person was, or what their background was, but knowing we needed to share a message with them. It really makes you rely on the Spirit to teach, which I've learned is so important! We had a great first experience with the TRC and I can't wait to do it again next Saturday!
Well, I think thats about it! I can't think of much else!
Oh! To answer a friend's question: I am in the MTC for 9 weeks. Normally it's 12 (unless you are fluent, or pretty close, then it's 6) but I'm part of a new pilot program, and will only be here 9! I leave May 17th!
Thank you all so much for your love and support! I truly appreciate each and every letter and Dear Elder! You all are so wonderful, and I am so blessed to have such amazing and wonderful family and friends!
I love you all!!!
-Sister Busath
MTC Box #107
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT, 84604
you can Dear Elder me!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Week 3 in the MTC!

Da Jia Hao!! (Hello everyone!)
Wow! I can't believe I'm already done with week 3 of the MTC!! Its so crazy! This week went by super fast and I hope the weeks keep going fast because I can't wait to get to Taiwan! But once I'm there, they can feel free to slow down =]
I have tons to talk about today so hopefully I'll be able to get through all or most all of it!
We'll start with conference! I hope you all watched it! If you didn't I highly suggest you go back and watch it because it was all amazing! Especially Saturday Afternoon, because, you know, some really awesome missionaries, me in particular, sang =] For those of you who missed it or couldn't find me, go to and click on the Conference section, then click to watch all of Saturday afternoon. We sing at 1 minute, 30 minutes and the very end. As for where I am, when you are looking at the whole choir, I am in the middle section, on the left aisle, 6th row up, second in from the aisle. I'm inbetween a sister with a bright pink cardigan on and a sister in a bright yellow shirt, and in front of a sister in a white blouse. The sister to the right of me was my freshman roommate, Sister Doying, and the sister right behind me in the white blouse is one of my companions, Sister Walbrecht. I am most seen in the first number (Glory to God on High). I'm in the first three shots of the sisters singing, so look for me!!!
My mom had some questions about conference that I forgot to bring, but here is a little about the behind the scenes of us singing. We had 8 rehersals, not including the day of. They were all at 7 AM every morning the week before conference. To be in it, you filled out a paper with your experience and it was pure luck if you got in. They didn't have time for auditions. If you missed rehersal, you lost your spot, so it was super important to be at rehersals. The morning of we met at 9 AM for a dress and grooming check and then left at 9:45. We were all bused up (7 or 8 busses) and went directly to the little theater to rehearse and have a snack. After that we were lined up to go to the choir loft! I've been to the conference center many times, and so I know how huge it is, but it is a wild experience being behind the prophet and looking out at everyone instead of being in front of him watching the choir =] We didn't get to meet the prophet (which was sad) and he didn't even speak in our session, which was also sad, but it was still a marvelous and once in a lifetime experience that I will never forget!!!
So that was conference. Another exciting thing this week that many of you may or may not have heard about was that David Archuleta came into the MTC! I knew he was coming in last Wednesday so I was looking for him. I didn't see him till the next morning in Choir. I figured he'd be singing with us, and I walked right past him. The following morning I saw him and his companion, said good morning and he said good morning back. I've seen him several times a day since. Mostly at meals. I've been told he is going to Chile, but I know for sure he's going to some spanish speaking mission. I do feel bad for him though because a lot of people have been very intrusive. We just have to remember that he is here for the same reason we all are: to serve the Lord. I admire him for his choice to serve the Lord! If you watch the end of the last song we sang in conference, Praise to the Man, he is zoomed in on at the last shot, so you can see that he really is a missionary =]

This last week my companion and I and our elders that are going to our mission got a letter from our Mission President, President Bishop (we all got individual letters =] ) It was a letter asking for the character for our last name. Mine in peng (second tone). This computer doesn't have chinese on it, so I'll have to write it out next week. We were all so excited! We even took a picture together with all our letters =]
Conference in the MTC was great! We watched the Sunday sessions, and inbetween we got to go on a temple walk! My companions and I hadn't been yet since we had been going to choir, so this was our first time. We went with our zhang lao men (elders) and it was so fun! We finally got to get some good district pictures, so I'll have to print them and mail them home. (I really wish we could attach pictures...can't wait till the field, then I can!). I also can't wait to do another temple walk =] I love it!
So today the older generation of Chinese speaking missionaries left =[ It is like 30 missionaries! Over half our branch!!! We don't know when we are getting new missionaries, but we don't expect it for another 3 weeks or so =[ So we are now technically the "older" generation, even though we've only been here 3 weeks! So crazy! Two of the elders in my district are the new zone leaders, and I'm the new coordinating sister. Our district is just so awesome and I love them all!
Chinese is going really well! I forgot to tell last week that we finished teaching Cai4 Pei4 Fen1. We had a big surprise with that one, but since I know there are some future missionaries reading this, I won't spoil the surprise, since all new missionaries have this same experience. I'll just say that after teaching Cai4 Pei4 Fen1, we got a new teacher =] We have two new investigators, played by our teachers. Wei4 Di4 Xiong1 is a 24 year old college student who thinks its interesting that we speak Chinese, and Zhang1 Jie3 Mei4 is a 36 year old married mother of two boys. We have had 3 lessons with Wei4 Di4 Xiong1 and 4 lessons with Zhang1 Jie3 Mei4. Both have "come" to church and are reading the Book of Mormon and praying. Zhang Jie Mei is really progressing and we plan to invite her to be baptized tomorrow! I'll let you know how that goes!
Well, I know that was a super long letter, but this past week was just super amazing!
I want to sincerely thank ALL of you for your letters and Dear Elders! I am absolutely amazed at the love and support I have from my amazing family and friends. I sometimes feel a little guilty when the District leader is passing out mail, because I always have the most (which I NEVER expected to be the case) but I am truly, truly grateful for every single piece of mail! I am blessed to have such wonderful friends and family! So thank you all!!!!!
Don't forget to keep Dear Eldering/Writing me! Because I do appreciate it, even if I'm not able to individually thank each and every one of you =]
With that, I just want to share with you my favorite conference talk, which was by Elder Scott in the Saturday Afternoon Session about the Holy Ghost. We weren't able to take paper with us on the stand, so I don't have any notes about it, but it is the one talk that I felt was so amazing! The Holy Ghost is such an amazing gift, and I am so grateful to have it! The MTC is just filled with the Spirit, and I'm so grateful to be surrounded by it all the time! It is also amazing the power that the Holy Ghost has in teaching investigators and truly converting them to the gospel. I know that without the Holy Ghost, I wouldn't be able to teach people the way I am able to!
I hope you all are having a wonderful week! I love each and every single one of you and I think of you all often!
Thank you for your love, support and prayers!!
Lots of love,
Sister Busath
MTC Mailbox #107
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT 84604
Here are all of the books she has to use and carry around.

And here is Andrea with our good friend Drew Austin.

Here is Andrea with the people in her district.
Andrea with her companion and roommates.