Friday, November 30, 2012

Week #4

Hola! Como Estan?
I feel like there are so many things that I need to write, to start off please tell Ali happy birthday, I would write her, but only if she writes me :D so tell her to write, I still haven't heard from her! Thank you so much for getting a package ready for Elder Wilson! A couple of my friends have written him, and he has been so happy this week, and that is all he talks about is how cool they are, and he is so happy to have somebody to write back to today. He has the biggest heart, and I just felt like he deserved to get some letters. Well the MTC is going good, we are way busy all of the time, and it is kind of hectic around here. They kicked us out of our classrooms yesterday into some old ghetto ones that they just renovated, because they are turning our good classrooms into dorms for sister missionaries. The influx of missionaries is going to start this December and it is going to be crazy around here, but I am excited for the new missionaries, because the work is hastening! I feel like I am picking up on the language pretty well. There is just so much to remember, but I know that it will come in time as long as I keep working for it, and relying on the Lord. But I am able to help with teaching about 40% of the lessons now, instead of 10% like it used to be, so that's good. To answer some of your questions. Yes we do have the oportunidad to attend the temple each Pday, so we will be going this afternoon. I am so excited! During gym time, they have a track, exercise equipment, volleyball, basketball, and 4 square. I usually play 4 square, that is like the most popular game to play, and it is so nice to unwind and play that 5 days a week. So my companion Elder Gallegos got his visa yesterday, and he flies out on Monday for the Lima MTC, so I am going to be put into another trio, and then there will only be 5 elders in our district. My comp. turned his visa stuff in on the 20th of August, so about the same time as mine, which means I could easily get my visa soon and be out of here. The elders in my district would like the Christ picture with the quote, and the talk by Holland. So I need 5 more copies of that please :D
I can't wait to find out where Justin is going, how awesome would that be if he got called to Cuzco Peru!!!! So I heard that all of my friends came and watched a movie at our house on Sunday, that sounds fun! I am glad that they are keeping you guys company.
We got to do TRC yesterday, and basically volunteers come in, and we teach them, but not as investigators they act as themselves (members) and we just teach them to help them in there life. It is so much more relaxed than teaching an investigator. I can't believe that tomorrow is December 1st! that is so insane, and come next Friday, I will have been here for a month.
So I have this goal that by the time I get out into the mission field I will have read the entire B.O.M. from cover to cover. I am not doing so well right now, but I am determined.
So how come you guys don't use dear elder at all. You know that when you use it, the thing gets here the same day which means you can send me 10 x's more letters!
Keep praying for my visa that it will come soon.
I love this gospel and I am so grateful to be a missionary ! I thought I knew how much I loved the scriptures and all of that before, but actually being here puts a whole new perspective on things. I know that the Lords work is hastening, and that we are going to bring so many more people unto Christ with the new missionaries. The Book of Mormon combined with the spirit is the best teaching tool. I have found a new love for the Book of Mormon and each time I get to read for myself (which is not often because we are always thinking about our investigators) I learn so many new things that I have never thought of before.
This gospel is amazing and it truly blesses lives.
Again I am sorry for my sporadic thoughts, but I want you to know how much I love all of you, and what great examples you have been in my life.

Love Elder Goaslind


District with Branch President and His wife


Friday, November 23, 2012

Happy After Thanksgiving!


How is everybody doing? I really enjoy getting letters from everybody! It makes my day when I get to read about things going on at home. I feel bad though, because I get all these things from home, and we have an Elder Wilson in our district, and he hasn't got anything the entire time we have been here, except for a really short e-mail from his mom. We don't know what to do for him, we are thinking of having some of each one of our friends write him letters so that he gets something, but we haven't thought of a final plan yet. Let me know if you have any suggestions for what we could do to help him, he gets really discouraged when we get stuff and he doesn't.
Mom, I forgot to say this last e-mail, but I think that it is awesome that you are studying Predicad Mi Evangelio! (Preach my Gospel). It truly is an inspired book, and I love being able to study it, you truly can learn so many things from it, and the best part is, you don't even have to be a full time missionary to apply its teachings into your life.
Dad, thank you so much for the thoughts from Elder Nash's talk from general conference, I loved it! As a missionary general conference talks are like heaven! whenever you get a chance to read or listen to one it is like opening a present on christmas!
I am so glad to hear that Brooke and Seth's wedding went so well. They make such a perfect couple, and I know that they will be happy together. The blessings of the temple are amazing, and the chance that we have to be sealed together in the temple is awesome!
Sorry, my thoughts are kind of random, but there is so much to type, in such a short amount of time! Thank you so much for all the packages and food that you have sent! My companion loves all of the cookies, and eats them all of the time :D and I am truly grateful for the pringles, because we only get chips with lunch like once a week. But we love getting food because it gives us something to snack on at night as we are writing in our journals and getting ready for bed. I think that the Tri-companionship is working pretty well. It definitely is harder to keep track of two companions, but Elder Allen is leaving for the Peru MTC on Tuesday so it will just be back to Elder Gallegos, and I after that. and our district will be down from 8 people to 6. We have no clue what they are going to do when these two elders leave because that means our district will have three rooms with only 2 elders in each, so we think that some of us might get moved.
Mom you had asked if I saw BJ's friend a lot. I saw him like the first week, but I haven't seen him since then, he isn't in any of my classes, so I think that he might be in the advanced spanish class or something, because we have the same classroom and teacher for all of our classes, there is no changing. So I am not sure whether or not he has got his visa. But I do see Jared Stewart from high school every now and then, and I also see Taran Bailey a lot, and he seems to be doing good. So all of the missionaries going to Mexico are going to be here a lot longer, especially the ones who were suppose to leave next week, because Mexico changed their visa standards, and now they require a certain amount of religion training to go there on missions, so like seminary or institue, so the church is trying to figure that out right now with them.
I feel horrible about Annika and her eczema, that is not fun to be going through, she is in my prayers, as are each and everyone of you.
So now I will tell you a little bit about Thanksgiving because you have never had a child in the MTC for a holiday :D Honestly, everyone should be very jealous, because this was like the best Thanksgiving ever! Not to be mean, but it was awesome! So we woke up, and they said it was suppose to be a continental breakfast, but it was just the usual food they feed us everyday, but this is where it gets good. At 10:00 that morning we had our Thanksgiving devotional, so our district waited in line in the cold from 7:00-10:00, we take our devotionals very seriously! But you will never guess who spoke at the devotional! JEFFREY R. HOLLAND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was amazing! we were all sitting there waiting to find out who the speaker was, and all of the sudden he walked in through the door, and the room went dead silent and everyone stood up, and we just stood there staring! When he entered the room it was like a huge wave of spiritual awesomeness flooding the room! He gave such an awesome talk, one thing he said that I really liked was, "Buck up and hang in there! Everything we are doing is going to work. We are the generation that is going to make it. It is finally going to work." That thought hit me so hard! we truly are the chosen generation, and this is the last and final dispensation. There were so many other good things said, but too many to add, so you will have to wait for two years until I get home :D After the devotional, we had Thanksgiving dinner at noon, the food was alright, but it definitely wasn't like the food at home! We then got some time to relax until our next meeting where they had musical numbers, and talked about everything we were thankful for. After the we ate sack lunch dinner in our rooms, and then helped in a humanitarian project and put together 8700 health and education kits for kids in Mali, Africa. I have some pictures of that, that you will see when you get the email. It was amazing to see everyone pull together to do good. One of my favorite parts though was at night, we all met in the big auditorium, and they gave each missionary a big bag of popcorn, and we all watched "17 Miracles" together. It was so amazing, I love that movie, and being a missionary I felt the spirit so strong and I truly came to understand how grateful I am for the easiness of my own life compared to what they had to go through to make it to Zion. So basically Thanksgiving was a party! It was nice not having to go to class that day.
Umm, some favors, please tell the Jensons thank you for the cookies they sent, I am going to write them, but I think if you told them thanks also it would be awesome!
I need you to send me some things mom :D could you please please please send me 2 cheap paperback Books of Mormon? We listened to a talk that said if you read the Book of Mormon with a single question in mind, and use 1 book for that question and mark up everything that relates to it, or your inspired about, you will find all sorts of answers. so I am going to do that throughout my mission. also I need you to send me a little hand held pencil sharpner please. I hate having to ask for stuff but I need it :D
I haven't heard anything about my visa, but I have a feeling that I am going to be here for Christmas which would be fine with me, other than the coldness. So just keep praying that it comes, a kid who has been here 9 weeks and is going to Cuzco, he is my zone leader, he just got reassigned to Alabama and goes Monday. Well I love hearing from all of you so keep writing me :D
I hope your Thanksgiving was awesome! Remember that we are the chosen generation, and we NEED to bring out the kingdom of God here on the earth. Every member is a missionary! don't forget that. I love all of you, have a GREAT week.

Con Mucho Amor!

Elder Goaslind

Alex's District


Friday, November 16, 2012

Made It through week one!!!!!

Hola mi familia!!!
How in the heck are things going back at home? it sounds like everything is going okay, and I hope that is completely true! Mom sorry if some of the "I"'s aren't capitalized, it is hard to remember to do that sometimes. Well this week has been full of all sorts of ups and downs. My companions and I kind of hit a wall these past two days in our learning, we just feel like we aren't progressing anymore like all of the other companionships. People weren't joking when they said that missions are the hardest things that you will ever do. But I know that as we rely on the Lord we can work through this rough patch. I hope that I am able to answer all of the questions that I have been asked because there were a lot of them :D
To start off, the food is good, but for some reason I don't have a big appetite and so I only eat about half of my food everytime we have a meal, and I am pretty sure that my companions think something is wrong with me. But oh well :D I weighed 149.6 pounds when I left, and I now as of yesterday weigh, 145.3 or something like that, so I have lost a little bit of weight but oh well, as long as it is not to severe.
I think that is hilarious that sister Bates facebooked you mom. She is very nice, and during one of our first lessons she saw my name and asked if my cousin was Sarah Goaslind or something like that I think. not quite sure, I didn't understand a lot of spanish then on the third day, but I am getting better. yesterday we challenged her to baptism and she declined after like 10 minutes of explaining IN SPANISH why we had to be baptized by immersion. But she said that she would continue to think about it. Yesterday was our last day teaching Sister Bates, AKA Maria.
I think that it would be a good idea to have more contacts instead of sending them to Peru, but you have like 9 weeks to send them to me, because I got my notice yesterday in the mail that my visa is not here and I will continue training at the Provo MTC. There are 4 phase trainers in our district and 2 of them are leaving on the 27th of november, but my companion and I are both staying here to train, unless our visas still come sometime soon. But I am not upset about it because I now that the Lord has a plan for me and that this is probably just part of it.
Thank you so much for the cookies mom, my companion Elder Allen ate almost an entire bag of them! I guess you could say he thinks they are good :D
The missionary newsletter was way good and I am so happy that all of the others are doing well. I just realized that I could be in the MTC with Mallory because my visa is not here.
Dad you wanted to know where my companions are from, Elder Gallegos is from Blackfoot, Idaho, and Elder Allen is from Rexburg, Idaho.
 On wednesday we had about a billion new missionaries arrive. Okay we really only had like 780 which is the most the MTC has had come in one day, but thats because they aren't coming next week due toThanksgiving. We got a new district in our branch, and I think they all think we are entirely crazy because druing class when we are bored we just role by their room on our rolly chairs and pull funny faces at them. :P We get kind of ADD when we have to sit in the same chair in the same room all day long but, thats okay because that is what is going to help us learn. There are so many rules to remember here. We not only have to remember the mission rules, but our branch president gave us a ton of rules also, like no hands in pocket, suit coat buttoned up everytime you stand, never use "guys, dudes, etc" ALWAYS use elders, or sisters. It's taking some getting use to. My teacher is awesome, Hermano Hales, last night he was talking to my companions and I after class for like 15 minutes because he could tell we were just having the worst day, and he gave us the best pep talk. The Lord puts people into your life because he knows you need them. I am so thankful for the things that I have learned thus far and I hope to continue to learn. Tyler wrote me a letter and at the end of it said "all things are possible in Christ." It has really helped me because that thought is always on my mind now, and I truly know that through Christ everything is possible. My favorite days here are Sunday, Tuesday, and Friday. the devotionals that we have on Sundays and Tuesdays are amazing. When you are in a big room full of missionaries the spirit is indescrible. There were a few times this week where I was almost brought to tears because of the spirit I felt, and one time when I was literally brought to tears as the spirit testified to me of the importance of the priesthood. I love this gospel with all mi corazon! Yo se que Jesucristo es el Salvador. Estoy agradecido por la Expiacion. Translation, I know that Jesus Christ is the Savior, and I am grateful for the atonement. I have come so close to Christ in this past week and can't wait to get to Peru and help others come close to him also.
I love all of you so much! Keep writing me, mom feel free to tell my friends about because I think they would like to use it also. But also everyone remember that handwritten letters are so special to missionaries, and that we hold them close to our hearts. Alright I am going to go now because I am already like 10 minutes over my limit, but thats okay because the computers in the laundry room don't time you, you time yourself :D I love you and always remember to rely on Christ. He loves all of us so much and wants what is best for us. we are all missionaries in our way, so invitar a las personas a venir a Cristo! Love you have have a wonderful week!

Con Mucho Amor

Elder Goaslind

Saturday, November 10, 2012

First Week in the MTC

Hola! Como le va?
How are things going back at home? Well we only have half a PDay today so we only enough time to write an email, and a couple letters while doing laundry. Well this first week has been absolutely exhausting!! Wednesday was insane, we got here and basically they sent us straight to class and we were there almost all day. Thursday and friday, we had about 8 hours of class each day, plus we had like 3 hours of personal and language study. so we spend almost all day in the classroom, and are barely ever in our room. Umm I don't know if you saw, but my expected departure date is on November 27, so lets hope and pray that my visa comes. I love the MTC, and my companion is awesome, his name is Elder Gallegos, and actually today we have one of the Elders going home for some reason so me and elder gallegos are going to become a Trio with Elder Allen, so that will be pretty awesome! I feel like I am getting better and better each day at the language, I already understand a lot of what the Maestro says en la clase, and I am beginning to speak a little bit myself, pero, just un poco. I am hoping that over the next couple of days I pick up the language even more. Yesterday we taught our first investigator, her name es Maria, and the whole lesson had to be in spanish, I feel like we did pretty well thank to mi compenero. he speaks really good spanish, so I am lucky because I could only understand the conversation, I had no clue what to say. Umm, iIwas going to email some pictures home today, but apparently you have to have some sort of special adapter that you plug into the computer and then you plug your sd card into that, the church blocks us from plugging the camera cord straight into the computer. I don't know why, but it is pretty lame. well basically the MTC is amazing, and you can always feel the spirit no matter what. I was made senior companion, and my compenero was made district leader, so basically sunday I will be going to meetings with him all day long. Plus I found out that we have to write a talk for sacrament each week and the whole thing has to be in espanol, so that should be pretty interestante. Umm there is not much else to say at this point in time because I have only been here for a couple of days, so nothing really exciting. but it did snow like a foot yesterday so it is extremely cold. Tonight we are teaching Maria again and we planned our whole lesson so lets hope that everthing goes well. Apparently I can attach files today because a kid in my district had one of the adapters so I hope that the pictures work. I miss you all and please tell everyone that I say hi, im going to finish my laundry now and go to class for 8 hours :) yipee! Love you and I will talk to you later!
Con Mucho Amor
Elder Goaslind

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Final Countdown

The Provo MTC is only 6 days away!! I have been called to serve in the Peru, Cusco Mission Spanish speaking. I am so excited to finally be going on my mission after waiting my whole life!! I am getting down to the last moments before I head out, and the nerves are starting to get to me. As I think more and more about going out to serve the Lord for a period of two years, I realize that everything I have been taught up to this point has prepared me for this. I can't wait to get out into the field and teach the wonderful people of Peru all about the gospel. These truly are going to be the best two years of my life, it may be rough at some points, but it will all be worth it in the end. I am going to miss everybody so much while I am gone, but I know that I will be able to see everybody when I get back. And I am so happy for all of those others who are choosing to serve the Lord also. I know that the Lord needs missionaries, and that we are choosing to do the right thing.
All of my letters and pictures will be posted to the blog while I am gone, and I hope to get letters from all of you. I am so grateful for the gospel, and can't wait til November 7th when I get to begin my service for the next two years!