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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

First Week at the MTC

Wow!  It has been an incredible first week at the MTC.  We have learned so much, though, on occasion, we have felt a little like the donkey in this picture.

We arrived at the MTC Sunday night, September 29th.  I'm glad we checked in the night before we were actually scheduled, as it allowed us to unpack and get settled in before the start of classes.  We are on the main campus, although some senior couples are staying at the Marriott Hotel in Provo and ride a shuttle back and forth.  There is also a West Campus that is self-contained where about 900 young missionaries are housed.

There were 122 senior missionaries in our group and over 2200 young missionaries are at the MTC right now.  Among this senior missionary group, assignments range from things like mission office help and Member Leadership Support (which basically means anything your mission president asks you to do) to such things as Church Education, records duplication, Young Single Adult Support, Auditing, Polynesian Cultural Center, Winters Quarter Visitors Center and, of course, Military Relations Specialists. In fact, in our group, there are 6 couples assigned to Military Relations.  A new couple that came in this week will be going to Katmandu, Nepal, as humanitarian missionaries overseeing a big water project.  How cool is that!  Another couple were told to bring their horse and trailer and levis with one suit for Sundays.  They will be working on a cattle ranch in New Mexico.

Seniors from our group are being sent to Siberia, Russia, Slovenia, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Japan, Chile, Philippines, Tonga, Marshall Islands, Hawaii, Australia, as well as numerous states on the US mainland.  One of the military couples will stationed at Fort Bragg, NC, not far from us.

Senior couples in our district
Being at the MTC for General Conference was a special treat.  Then Sunday evening our Devotional was a program by Vocal Point, a BYU a Capella group that was on the TV show, Sing Off,  last season.  Bob loves a Capella singing and so was very excited -- as were all the young missionaries, who were obviously big fans. Everyone in the group was a returned missionary and several of them shared some of their missionary experiences and challenges, as well as their testimonies as part of the program.  It was very touching.  Bob's eyes even leaked a bit.

I am amazed at how smoothly everything runs here.  They manage to feed and house well  over 2000 people and make it look it easy. There is a dry cleaners, laundry facility, alterations department, bookstore, barber shop, mail room, and gym/workout room, in addition to all the classrooms and auditoriums.  There is an exercise room on our floor just for seniors with two treadmills and two recumbent bikes, so I've been riding one of the bikes each day.  I have been using the Fitbit my daughter, Kristy, gave me and have been tracking how many steps I take each day (riding the bike  counts).  The past three days I have logged over 10,000 -- a first for me.

It has been such a joy sharing this experience with my best friend.  We are growing and learning --and loving it.

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