This last week we were blessed to have a massive thunder storm for two days. We liked that very much. We hadn't seen weather here for a long time so that was nice. It also made us really look forward to China because it will do that the whole time. Also it is starting to get really cold here in the mornings. We are hoping that it will snow before we leave just to add more variety to the days. Though I don't think that will happen.
We learned in class this week that we should never Identify as Mormon missionaries. For two reasons the first is that its unprofessional and not the name of the church we represent. The second is that when the church first came to China the name "Momuhn" which the early church used to identify by, means "The gates of hell" so lots of people don't like us. The translation was eventually changed but it kind of stuck. So we are not supposed to do that. We also finally learned about past tense in Cantonese. Before then our belief was as expressed by Elder Munsey "Chinese has no past tense that way they can't talk about Tiananmen Square". But apparently it exists.
Our district leader is from Taiwan and does not get mail or packages from home so we all wrote him letters and got some candy from the store and sent it to him. That made him really happy. That was fun.
One of our teachers who is a Hong Kong native (I've referred to her a Lau Jimuih before). Anyway she was telling us a story about her Mission in D.C. and said that she and her companion went into someone's yard they were teaching and the dog had become untied from a tree to which it was originally anchored. So she said that she and her companion chased it and finally caught it and (her English sliced and said that she "Hung it in the tree". Naturally we all laughed and she freaked out because she meant to say that she tied it back in the tree. I can't do the story justice but it was Hilarious.
Wednesday is the day that new missionaries arrive so Elder McGowan and I were watching by the front gate remembering when we were dropped off. It was fun to see their nervous faces. We will get to be host missionaries next Wednesday. This means that we will take people from their cars and away from their families and take them to their classes. We are looking forward to making it full circle like that.
Time for some unfortunate news. A sister from District 30B (the other Canto. District) went home this week. Apparently it was for medical reasons. Some thing about her needing Knee surgery. That was unfortunate. I was really surprised that we made it this far without someone going home. Most places have people go home within 2 weeks because that is the point when you realize that this is not going to be fun 24/7. Since we are on this note I will talk about TRC this week. There were not very many canto. volunteers so we had to teach our teachers. So my companion and I thought that our lesson went well. That was until we got our evaluation cards. It was brutal. He stopped just short of calling us the worst missionaries he has ever seen. The only thing he did not criticize was our language. He said that our body language was awful and it felt like we just didn't care. Which was not the way that we felt at all. So we were very very discouraged. He brought up stuff though that we hadn't thought about. So I guess it turned out to be a good thing because now we know what things we need to work on. Still sucked to hear though.
On a Happier note my companion and I were called to be Sacrament coordinators for Branch 30 so that should help to move time along now that we have some responsibilities.
Last night after our devotional by the director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir which was amazing! I was glad we were in the choir for that one. Any way we finished that and after the Sunday night devotional they show movies. These are however most of the time just talks from apostles. However this week they were showing Meet The Mormons. That was really good. It was the closest thing to a movie that we had seen in a month. I defiantly recommend it. The last part was about a missionary mom and an Elder getting his call and going to the MTC. it was very emotional, almost everyone was crying and home sick.
I also met an Elder Gordon going to the Salem Oregon Mission (the mission in which I and most of you live) I told him that if he ever served in Newberg 1st ward to find my family. I said that they would be easy to find because they are the ones that ride motorcycles to church.
Also we crossed the half way point of our MTC stay so that is what some of these pictures are from. In addition I'm using a lot of Mormon Lingo so if you want me to explain something let me know.
Thank you all for your letters that help a lot. Love you all!
Half way through the MTC party
Elder McGowan (Gordon's companion)
Provo, UT temple
Ran into Elder Tate Masse again
Gordon's district Not quite sure what Gordon is looking at in this one!
We told Gordon we wanted to see basic things like where he does his laundry
Gordon's favorite painting in the MTC at the moment