Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Making Headway with Tagalog

Kumusta Family!!

I want you all to know that I love you lots and I miss you soooo much!

Thanks for all the letters I love reading them :)

MOM and Rachel! That is so awesome that you signed up for the Turkey Trot!! I am so proud of you girls I know you can do it:) I will pray for your success! Tell me all about it k?

Also mother, I have not found my camera. I know very sad. I guess I will have to buy a new one but untill then sister Palmers mom is supposed to be sending you pics. Has she done that yet?

Anyway this week has been great! I think it is my best week yet here at the mtc! I am finally getting comfortable with the language. It is far from perfect but my Kasamas and I can converse now about things other than "Where are you from?" and "Do you have a family?" haha! We are also able to teach lessons now with hardly any planning which is pretty exciting. I mean of course we plan a topic to teach about but we don't have to plan out each phrase and practice it for two days to be able to teach it. Last night we taught two elders in our district with about ten minutes to prepare and we taught an awesome lesson about obedience in tagalog! Being able to speak and understand the language better makes it easier for us to foeel the spirit and teach by the spirit during our lessons. We have been working on that a lot lately, being guided by the spirit as we are teaching. It is amazing how much the spirit can bring to my mind and how much I can feel the spirit when I rely on him. The gifts of the spirit are so amazing but we cannot be led by them if we don't ask! so make sure all of you pray for the guidence of the Holy Ghost Lahat Araw, Araw Araw (all day every day!) !

So anyway lets see district 16C is officially gone :( they are awesome missionaries and we will miss them so much! Especially sister Tauti! She left yesterday and that was so sad but happpy because she is going the be an amazing missionary in the field. We all saw them off and took a lot of pics with them yesterday. In a couple of weeks that will be me leaving!! I can't wait.Sooooooo missionaries leaving means a lot of changes around here! New zone leaders are Elders Perkins and Adams who are in my disrtict. And we are getting 37 new missionaries tomorrow!!! That's a lot of missionaries! 6 of them are sisters. Oh man 31 new elders. haha. that is going to be a handful, but I'm super excited.

Since there are so many newbies coming in all the teachers are getting moved around. Our favorite teacher Bro. Ah Mu is not going to be our teacher anymore. Very sad. He is soooooo highlarious and such a great teacher! we are going to miss him a lot. At least we still have our other teacher Sister Lewis. She is so sweet and amazing at Tagalog. She also has the cutest dresses in the World!

So this might be a short email today because not a ton has happened this week so sorry but something that did happen this week is Elder Neil L Andersen came to speak to us! It was so amazing to have an apostle of the Lord here at the MTC! He started of by saying that it was Thomas S. Monsons Birthday and that he wished he could have been there. So we all sang Happy Birthday to President Thomas S. Monson! it was so fun :) He went on to talk about 9 very important things that Thomas S. Monson would have said if he were speaking at the MTC. These two are my favorite. #7 Never ignore a prompting of the spirit and #9 Witness the Power of the Savior. The other points are also very important but these two are just so important. Like I said before, the Holy Ghost is so important in missionary work. We must always be heeding to it's promptings and asking for his prescence if we are to find people and teach them to their needs. Once we do teach we must testify of Christ. Jesus Christ is the reason why we do missionary work. If we are to testify of Christ we should be converted unto Christ ourselves too!! Anyways I don't have time to wright all about this but I am hoping to have time to write you all a hand written letter today too.

I love you and I am sorry this was so short and not really funny or anything! Thank you for writing funny things in your letters I love you read them and they make me happy!

I love getting letters tell everyone to send more!!!

I am glad you started baseball up again mother I know you love that. Tell all the children I say hello and that I love them all to pieces!

Ahhhh!! There is like no Tagalog in this letter!! ummmmmmm Itinuturo sa ating ng Word of wisdom na iwasan nating and tsa, kape, tobacco, at alak. haha. random sentence that I said in a lesson the other day.

Love you! I promise hand written letters this week!!!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The MTC Saga Continues...

Kumusta Pamilya!!
I hope you are having a Mabuting mabuti day!! I am! Just got back from the temple and as usual it was amazing! I just love the temple and the blessings that I feel there. I am glad the boys and dad were able to go it is really the happiest place on earth :) I hope I get to go when I get to the Philies!
Thanks for the letters and all the Love. I love hearing about all the things you are doing. I´m glad you liked the pics I sent!! I love love love my zone and I wish you could meet them all. Also I wish I could send you more pics but I somehow misplaced my camera........soooo we will be searching for it today and if I dont find it I might just buy a new one. Untill then I am going to have sister Palmer´s mother email you pics.

That is so crazy that little Sammie is in High School!! You go Brother! I love your guts! Learn lot's and work hard!

Good to hear alex is doing well too:) I miss hearing you play the piano bro. don't stop playing!
I am proud of Abbott for winning a prize his first year at the fair...That's my Nephew!  I miss him very much so kiss him double for me ok:)
So this week has been a tough yet rewarding one. I said this in the hand written letter I sent but I will say it again, My Kasamas and I have made a goal to speak Tagalog 100% of the time excluding companionship study, personal study, and when we are speaking to non Tagalog speakers. It has been so mahirap (difficult) pero, it is helping so much! I never realized how much Tagalog I knew until now. We can actually have full on conversations! it is so much fun! I love this language!

It is very hard though, At the beginning of the week I was feeling very discouraged. I was comparing myself to my peers and I felt like i didn't know as much as they did. I knew these thoughts would not get me anywhere but I couldn't stop bringing myself down. I was also starting to get a cold so that didn't help. Anyway I started cryingin class because of all the pressure....haha. Anyway I got the prompting to ask one of my eldes to give me a blessing. So of course I followed it and Elder Ha'o gave me a great blessing. Afterward I felt peace and calm. I felt confident that I could learn and even be fluent by the time I leave the MTC! I love the blessings of the priesthood and the calming spirit of the Holy Ghost.
So This week is sort of a sad one, District 16c are leaving! they all got their travel plans a few days ago and they leave in 6 days. We are really good friends with this district and it is sad to see them go. But exciting because it made us realize that in a couple of weeks WE will be getting travel plans!!! I cant believe it is so close!! Anyway, Sister Tauti is in District 16C. I love her and I know she will be a great missionary :)

Let's see what else happened this week.....I sang in church. Well Me, Sister Walker (going to baguio), Elder Ha'o, and Elder finley sang come thou fount. I forgot the words on the first verse but I hummed and I think it turned out great :)) I also said the opening prayer in tagalog :) Also this week we had an awesome Relief Society taught by the 2nd councelor of the General YW Presidency Sister Cook. She is so sweet and we got to meet and chat with her afterwards. I also met some really sweet filippino sisters this week! My kasamas and I were able to communicate with them in Tagalog it was very exciting.
So some funny things that happened this week. Yesterday Elder Finley told an investigator "I promise that if you Leave the Church, you and your family will be blessed" haha!!! the word for leave and go are kinda the same. lol. Tagalog is a really funny language. Pretty much if you put "Mag" in front of any english word it makes it into a word in tagalog. Halimbawa (example) my teacher, Brother Ah Mu, always says "Segi mga missionero Magpractice siya!" (ok missionaries practice it!) or we say "Pwede po ba kami Magrestroom?" can we use the restroom? just add Mag and you too can speak tagalog! haha! Funfact: The longest word I know so far is Pinakamakapangyarihan. That means "almighty" pretty fun!
Anyway I am running out of time!! So I will write anything I forgot in a handwritten letter.
Mahal ko kayo! Alam ko po na totoo And Simbahan ni JesuCristo ng mga Banal sa mga Huling Araw!

Keep reading and Aklat Ni Mormon! it is the best book ever I love it with all my heart.
And I love you!!!
Mahalna mahal ko kayo! Kitakits pamiliya ko!!
Sister Stapp

p.s. I am writing in my journal.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

First Glimpses of the MTC

                                                                           The Zone?

Elder Souza and Sister Stapp meet up!

Black Nametag

The District

Everyone shopped out Down East

Sister Palmer, Sister Stapp, and Sister Evans

On the green.

Holding the Priesthood

Sister Stapp at the Provo Temple

Preparation Day

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Ikinagagalak ko pong makilala ka!! (Please to meet you)

I love you all so much and miss you too!! Thank you for all the dear elders they made me very very happy. I love hearing about the camping trip. Wish I could have been there. I miss the ocean and baby abbott so much! I can't wait to see the video!!!
So this week has been awesome! First of all we have a new roommate. I think I already told you this though. She is a solo sister from New Zealand. She is the sweetest thing. It has been so fun to have her around! also Elder Souza is here!! You know this already im sure. But ya it's so awesome to see him walking around here. I'm so glad he finally made it!
So let's see this week has been really interesting because both of my teachers are gone, so we have had a different teacher every day. It has been really awesome though because all the teachers here are really great and highlarious. We have a really good time in class.

The language is getting better and better every day! Yesterday we started an SYL (speak your language) competition between districts to see who can go the longest speaking straight Tagalog. The record is 3 hours so far. Me and my kasamas went for 50 mins straight!! OK that isn't that long but it was so awesome to speak pure Tagalog. Even though I know I wasn't speaking perfectly, I was still surprised at how much I actually knew. I pray for the gift of tongues every day and I think it;s working :) Any way sorry if this email seems short. The keyboard I am typing on is a weird shape and I can't type really fast.

Basta (anyway) on Saturday night our zone leaders Elders Peck, Latu, and Allin (yes we have three ZLs) called the whole zone to a meeting. In the meeting they invited all of us to participate in a zone-wide fast on Sunday. We would all be fasting for better studies and better focus as a zone and then for the rest of the week our focus would ne Alma 17: 2-3. So on sunday we all fasted together which was awesome. And at the end of the day we all walked to the temple talked for a while and then closed our fast as a zone. It was a really awesome experience. I feel like it unified us as a zone and already I feel like we all have become more focused on the work. I love love love my zone. I am going to be so sad when we all have to leave. But I still cannot wait to get to the Philippines!!!!
The other day during class my teacher Brother Ah Mu talked to me and sister Palmer for like 45 mins about Baguio and how awesome it is. I cant wait! That is so crazy that Brett is home! Tell him I say hey :)
Basta, I am having a great time! I cannot believe i am almost half way through my MTC stay. the time has flown and I have learned and grown so much. I love myfamily and I love the Gospel. Alam Ko po na Mapagmahal po ang Ama Sa Langit! (I know my Heavenly Father Loves me.) Alam Ko po na buhay po si Jesucristo! I know my savior lives!
Rachel: Elder Brown broke our scentsy because he was laughing so hard that he kicked it. I love you:)  I will send you another letter today.:)
Mother: I would like all the earrings please! also When are you sending the package??? :))
Also you are the most beautiful person ever.
Dad: Thank you for your prayers!! I pray for you everyday! I love you!
I will bear my testimony to you in Tagalog when I get home ok ? :)
Alex and sammie! I miss you boys a whole lot! I hope you are having a great time! Pinili Ang Tama!! Choose the Right!!
ps. The subject of this email means "Pleased to meet you" haha.
Also ps. I will send my SD card home today. It is not full but I want you to have some pics!!
ppps. Send me pics of the camping trip!!
Mahal Kita!
Sister Stapp

Friday, August 10, 2012

Week Three, Funny How Time Doesn't Fly

Sooo this week has been great! Doing what we always do which is pretty much studying, planning and eating. sorry if these emails get repetatiive. haha.
We are now teaching two progressing investigators which keeps us pretty busy. Each lesson gets better and better as we start to learn more about Tagalog sentence structure. I am still struggling to get the grammar down but everyone says "It will come" and I just keep praying that it will so we will see!! I learned something really valuable this week during a workshop we had where we had a partner that was not our companion. With that partner we took turns teaching about the message of the restoration. My partner was this little sister from a little island next to Fiji. She was so sweet and could hardly speak English. As she started sharing the message with me, I noticed her points were really scattered and she could hardly think of the English words to say to me. But I also noticed something else. She was speaking from the depths of her heart. Even though her English was broken, I could tell she had a testimony of Joseph Smith. I felt the spirit so strongly during her lesson. It reminded me of what this is all about. It's not about a language it is about the spirit. If I can learn to utter a few words in Tagalog and speak from my heart, that is all I need:)
This Sunday was fast Sunday (I'm sure you knew that) it was amazing because it was all in Tagalog! and I understood most of it!! I didn't bare my testimony because I thought I would let the district who was leaving bare theirs. But it was just so amazing to sit back and listen. They all speak so well and I could understand!
 Anyway so these past few days have been kinda sad because one of our districts left yesterday. They were so awesome and nice It will be quiet on our floor with them gone. On the bright side, now that they are gone we ransacked their classroom and all got new and improved desks!! And when the next district leaves, we get their rolley chairs! yup that's the way things work on the Filippino floor. haha. So we won't get new districts until we are three weeks from leaving which is sorta weird. Oh and to answer your question mom My mga kasama (companions) are going to Baguio (sis palmer) and Naga (sis evans)
Half our district is going to baguio and the other half is Naga.
So funny story about Sister Palmer, she speaks perfect Tagalog in her sleep! Seriously! It always takes me a while longer to get to sleep and I always hear her practicing her phrases it is the funniest thing ever.
Another little fun fact. I overheard an elder saying this here at the MTC "I figured out the best way to travel around the MTC. Just follow Sisters around, the crouds of elders part and you can follow in their wake" the sisters and I thought this was the funniest thing so we decided to put it to the test and it't true!! There are always huge groups of elders just standing around and as soon as we walk in their direction they part like the red sea. Best part of being a sister at the MTC.
Another fun thing. Our elders say the funniest things in their lessons. Last night they were teaching our investigator named Efron. Efron asked if elder Sorensen had a wife and he said "Hindi po ado asawa" Which he thought meant "I don't have a wife" it actually means "I am not a wife" haha! I laughed at that. Things like that happen so much our elders have also told our investigator that they were his children and that a pig would pick him up for church. lol. Anyway just some things that I hope make you laugh.
I hope you all have a great camping trip!! I will bear my testimony to you in tagalog:)
 Alam ko po na totoo Ang simbahan ni Jesucristo ng mga Banal sa mga Huling araw.
Alam ko po na totoo Ang Aklat ni Mormon . Alam Ko po na buhay ni Jesucristo. At Alam ko po na Magmahal ng Ama sa Langit :)
 It's short and sweet but there it is!!
Let me know how the camping trip turns out!!
I think I will try to put more tagalog in my letters. But I am out of time now :((
Mahal Kita pamilya Ko!! Mahal Kita Alex! Mahal Kita Samuel! Mahal Kita Mommy! Mahal Kita Daddy!! Mahal Kita Rachel abbott and Bennn!!
Sister Stapp