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Thursday, August 22, 2013

Week One of the MTC

Woah. SO. Much. Going on. WHERE TO START!!!!!!!!!!
So my companions. I have 2 lovely companions: Sister Gee who is 5'10", super gorgeous, and from somewhere near Seattle. My other companion is Sister Palmer, who is such a cutie pie! She is from California, and she is a sporty little thing. During gym time, we do all sorts of things, and she is just so good at everything sports related: bball, volleyball, running around the track.... My companions make me want to be the best I can be. So our branch president tells us he expects our branch to be more than 100% obedient with mission rules. Instead of being in our rooms by 10:15, we're in there by 10:14. Same with lights out (10:29) and getting up in the morning (6:29). We see lots of missionaries who don't obey some rules, but we make it a big priority to do the best that we can with the rules in being perfectly obedient, because that is how we are able to be blessed with the Spirit of God, doing all we can, then letting the Lord do the rest!!

So I am getting used to Sister missionary clothes, and I am starting to love them! Everyone jut looks so professional, yet super cute in their classy attire.
Sis Miss Swag!

Well I am typing like a mad woman right now! I have sooooooooooo much to say. Too little time!! I love the MTC. It is definitely a love/hate relationship. I love it because the spirit is my constant companion, but it is just super challenging. This is the greatest yet hardest thing I have ever done. It challenges me physically (always tired), emotionally, and spiritually, but it is all worth it for the salvation of souls.We were watching a devotional given by Pres. Holland last Thanksgiving here at the MTC, and he was talking about how some missionaries talk about what they're going to do once they go back to real life in a year and a half to 2 years. He makes a point to say that this IS REAL LIFE. This is as real as it's going to get. (You gotta love Jeffrey R. Holland's straight forwardness:) People are waiting to hear the truth. They are waiting for those missionaries to come and save them. They are waiting for Christ. He also said "Whatever you think this church is gonna be, you're underestimating it." This church is going to be something great. I know it with all my heart. Sure I may have hard times that challenge me to my full potential, but we have a HUGE responsibility as representatives of Jesus Christ. I am honored that he called upon me(:

Its funny/amazing what the MTC does to ya in just a week!! I just want to bear my testimony to everyone I see!!

The biggest thing the Missionary Training Center emphasizes is love. Having true love for God's children. I just have so much love for all people. We teach investigators here, and before you walk in the room, or even meet the person for the first time, you just love them so much, you want to say, "You just gotta listen to me. I have something that'll change your life forever. It will bring you eternal happiness!!!" But then again, I'm sure someone would probably look at me like I'm a wierdo if I did that.... I know I have had friends in the past who don't like church (generally speaking, no specific religion) because they feel people are hypocrites and don't practice what they preach. But I know that if you have the pure love of Christ, love should be emanating from you at all times. I know I sound mushy, but I want to be the BEST missionary I can be. And I don't just want to stop after my mission, I just want to keep progressing!

Random tip for you soon-to-be MTCers, don't bring hangers. You closet has them! People just leave them behind.

So some funny stuff! One of my teachers, who was super serious, was sitting down in a chair in front of the class, and his pants rose just enough to uncover his socks. They said "Boss" on them hah. We just thought it was so funny coming from such a serious, yet spiritual guy. I'm guessing they just meant Hugo Boss, but still a funny thought!We were teasing him about those haha.
Then, we were in zone teaching, and our teacher's phone went off. It was some song on the radio, and all like 30-40 of us were like, "No music!!!!! Ah!" haha our obedience is really getting to us. 
Something way cool! On Sunday, right after relief society, we took a picture (all of the Sisters in the MTC) to put in a time capsule that'll be opened a number of years from now to see how the Sisters have changed. I feel honored(:

My district is soo funny. They are just all little boys!! So young!!! Little 18 year olds. But I know that who God calls, he qualifies. They have grown up sooo much in that past week, it is just amazing.

Something else that is pretty exciting. I got a calling! I am a sister training leader! This is a pretty important thing. We are basically Zone Leaders but for the sisters. We do a mixture of zone leader tasks and district leader tasks. It is me and another Sister in our Zone that have this calling. Anywho, I got this Sunday, and then I was in meetings from Sunday on! Today, the Zone leaders and us STLs are doing kind of a welcome orientation tonight for the new be missionaries That are coming into our Zone. Its so funny to think that we are Pros here. So ya, we are going to be giving a tour of the MTC, and then we explain lots of different items of importance about the MTC, and companions and such. I just want to make sure my new sisters feel welcome and make sure that if they ever need to talk to anyone, they can come to me or my co-sis training leader, Sister Peters. (: Oh! something fun, we picked up an international sister yesterday night, Sis. Peters and I, and we just took her around with us. Internationals come in a day early, so its our job to make sure they feel welcome. We took her to the Tuesday night devotional with us, and we sang in the choir. It was kinda funny because we didn't have time to practice on Sunday, so we basically were sight reading it for the performance. I don't think Sis. Chapman, our lovely sister from Australia, Perth, minded because she had a lovely voice.

Some cool devotionals/speakers we listened to!
Vai Sikahema spoke to us on sunday night, and he was HILARIOUS. He is a sports newscaster for ESPN i think? He went on his mission to South Dekota and he loved it. I think thats just a testament that missions are about bringing the people to Christ. It is not about the place OR about yourself. 
We also saw Richard J. Maynes speak last night, who is in the presidency of the quorum of the 70. He was way great. He compared us as missionaries to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, when they came down to Joseph Smith in the sacred grove. To be compared to Christ as a missionary?? I only hope that I could be even an eighth as powerful! Also another thought. Joseph Smith represents our investigators inthe past, present and future. How powerful. To think that someone we could maybe come in contact with could have that much of an impact on our church/beliefs??

All in all, it has been a great, yet super busy week. I am so glad I am going on a mission, and I couldn't imagine myself in a better place right now.

Much love,

Sister Steenhoek

PS. Write me emails!!

Angie and her companions

Angies co-Sister Leader

Some Zone Leaders and Sister Leaders

A Dear Elder Letter to Angie

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Busy as a Bee!

Well the time is surely ticking!! I now report to the MTC to prepare to go to my wonderful mission at Temple Square in Salt Lake City Utah in less than 6 short days. How weird is that? I feel like it was just yesterday when I decided to go on a mission!
Anxiously awaiting the opening of my call! April 26, 2013

Speaking of that, I feel like everyone has their cute little story of when they decided they should serve a mission. I am going to share mine!!

So the Saturday morning session rolls around for the October 2012 General Conference, and me along with a few of my friends from the hall decided to watch it in the main gathering area in the building of our dorm room. The majority of girls in there were total strangers, with the exception of my friends. As we all sat down, I'm sure we were all expecting the same thing: a straight-forward talk by President Holland, a very thick accent from an apostle we haven't heard of, many hymns sung by Mo-Tab (but beautifully done of course!), as well as a plane reference by Uchtdorf.

Boy. Were we ever so wrong!!! I mean, yeah, we saw all those things, but the 1st presidency was not messin' around. They caught us off guard from the start!
After the announcement was made regarding the age change of elder missionaries from 19 to 18 and sister missionaries from 21 to 19, all the girls I was watching this (half strangers half friends) with starting bawling (no surprise, right??). We all suddenly wanted to go on missions and thought this announcement was the coolest thing ever since the creation of cheesecake! Immediately following this session, I called my parents. When my mom picked up the phone, I told her, "Mom. I think I'm going on a mission."
"No, don't say you think. Say you know!"
Sorry this photo is bad quality! A few of us right after the 1st session of General Conference!

It was true. I did know ever since that moment! And now I'm here hurrying around trying to prepare everything! I must say though, it's always so fun having super spontaneous life-changing moments!

Speaking of those moments, another one of those was Disney World!!

(Left: One of my roommates and I at our graduation for our
Disney Internship. Right: A few of my friends from Main Entrance!
They are from many different places such as Mexico, Canada, Singapore,
and France!)

So the past 3 months, I have been working at the main entrance of Magic Kingdom Park in Disney World! It has been sooo much fun. I feel like a little kid when I'm down here! But at the same time, we all worked very hard and got along great! I made so many wonderful friends(: I am going to miss them so much!

My job consisted of working at the turnstiles and touch point systems that were just installed this past February. I basically admitted and denied people from coming into the park.

Roommates and I at Epcot
A few things I have learned:

  1. Little boys should never wear capris
  2. If you're happy, others are happy too!
  3. British children have the cutest accents, even when they are being fussy
  4. Little girls wearing birthday buttons expect you to say "Happy Birthday, Princess" to them
  5. Make sure you know FOR CERTAIN if you're talking to a man or woman before you use formal titles such as 'Ma'am' or 'Sir,' or else you'll be pulling a, "Yep, Sir over there!"
  6. Children are people too, and deserve to be treated with the same respect and given the same attention as adults(:
  7. Yes, the 3 o' clock parade starts at 3 o'clock
  8. I had the best job in the world getting to watch fireworks every night at 10 o'clock
Even with the sillier things thrown in there, I have definitely learned what great customer service is!

Bear with me, I need to catch up on my past 3 months! Almost finished though!

So I went to my sister's wedding, and it was great! Aubrey was such a beautiful bride, and her and Jordan are such an adorable couple!
My sister Marilyn, me, and my brother Danny

Bridal party

The happy couple!
That same weekend, my sister and I also got our endowments out! What a special time!! I love the temple!!
Since the last week in July, I've gone through 4 times! Yay!

In that same weekend, guess where I went?? To my mission!! Temple Square! I got to talk to quite a few sister missionaries serving there, and they are all the sweetest. I hear the work is hard and you are on the Square for basically the whole day, but it is worth it. I cannot wait to go!
Sister Briggs and I
This is a picture of one of Aubrey's (one of my sisters) good friends, Sister Kesley Briggs. It was a pleasure meeting her, and I'm so excited to see her on the Square!

So last but not least, my brother Jeremy is out serving a mission right now in Comayaguela Honduras (Did I spell that right??). I am so proud of him! He comes home April 2014. It'll be pretty weird to be out the same time as my brother because I never thought I'd be serving a mission just 10 months ago. But I think it'll be super fun to write him and hear about his exciting adventures! Can you spot which one is him??(:

Well that's all for now! Please stay in touch, and make sure to write me letters/send me emails! I'll be sure to try and write you back. My address will be updated on the right-hand side of my blog for each time I transfer, so make sure to follow along!

With love,

Angelique Steenhoek