Week 1 – MTC

Hello from the MTC!! It’s definitely hard here, but I am having such a great time. The Spirit is so strong! Whenever we’re not feeling the Spirit, we just feel all depressed and start praying and try to feel it again:)


I love my companion! Sister Choo is really nice and has such a strong testimony. She moved to Huntington Beach CA from Korea with her family when she was about nine, and they were converted to the gospel a couple of years later. When she bears testimony, I feel the Spirit so powerfully! She’s going to Tacoma WA, so I won’t get to see her after the MTC. But she does go to BYUI, so maybe I’ll get to see her after my mission!

My district is the BEST. There are six elders and four sisters, and we’reĀ all going to either Tacoma WA or Denver north, CO. Everyone really wants to be great missionaries and tries really hard, and we have a lot of fun too. Last night we were laughing so hard, I was crying:)

Our teacher is Sister Thompson, and every time she opens her mouth to say something, anything really, I feel the Spirit! Her lessons have helped me learn how to teach people by the Spirit.

sistersdistrictThat’s something that is emphasized a lot here! We can’t teach properly if we’re not teaching by the Spirit. Sister Choo and I pray all the time for our investigators and try to learn from the Spirit what they need to hear. It’s hard, but it’s so worth it. We’ve taught three investigators so far: Pam, Lynne, and Erika. They are amazing and I love them so much! We just got to teach Pam once, but we taught Lynne twice and we’re teaching Erika four times! We’ve only done it once so far but we’ll be teaching her Wednesday, Thursday and Friday as well. And we’re also going to teach Lucia twice this week. The first lesson, Pam’s, was pretty hard, but we were able to feel the Spirit, especially when we asked her to pray. It is so important that the Spirit is there for lessons.

I have a couple of new favorite scriptures!

emandsischoo“And He that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please Him.” That’s John 8:29, and it’s Christ speaking. We can learn so much from His example. When we’re obedient, Heavenly Father will always support us.

“Neither take ye thought beforehand what ye shall say; but treasure up in your minds continually the words of life, and it shall be given you in the very hour that portion that shall be meted unto every man.” D&C 84:85. A few nights ago I prayed to read what I needed in the scriptures, and I opened to this scripture. It’s a good reminder that I need to treasure up God’s words so the Spirit can teach our investigators through me.

gorgsistersOur temple walk was on Sunday and I loved it! The MTC is amazing, but you do feel a little claustrophobic here. It was great to get out in the fresh air and see the House of the Lord. And later today we get to go in!

Fast Sunday was really nice, and my testimony of fasting was strengthened. One of the things I fasted for was to truly know my Heavenly Father, and in mission conference, President Burgess (MTC president), talked about how much Heavenly Father loves us and how we can come to know Him! It was a real blessing.

the District

There are a lot of big adjustments I’ve been having to make, but some things are easier than I thought they would be. Like I thought it would be hard to get on a missionary sleeping schedule, but by the time 10:30 rolls around I am ready to be asleep because they work us pretty hard here:) And then it’s usually fine getting up at 6:30 since I went to bed early! Some things are hard to adjust to though. You can’t say, “Hey guys!” You have to say “Elders” or “Sisters” and it’s pretty weird. And also there is almost no free time, so we’re just running back and forth all day long except when we’re in class. It’s very tiring! But I have felt the Lord’s support through everything. I know that He is truly with His missionaries, and we can do everything He asks of us.

My companion and I are the music coordinators in our branch, so we’ve been planning this musical number where the two districts that are leaving next week are going to sing “Come Thou Fount” in sacrament meeting. I’m playing an arrangement of it while they all sing. I think it will be really good! I love the lyrics in that song, and they have even more meaning now that I’m a missionary:)

sisterstratfordAll in all, the MTC is great! But I’m super excited to go to Colorado and share Christ’s gospel with everyone there:) I love you all!!


Sister Stratford