Riverton, Utah!

September 24, 2012
I didn't bring the connecter for my camera, so I can't send pictures today, but I will send some in the mail and send some digital copies next week. Sorry I haven't written-- I didn't get a P-day last week!! I have P-day every Monday and get this.. I can only RECEIVE AND SEND mail on Mondays!! Wild. I suppose it is meant to help me focus, but it distracts me sometimes! I want to know what is going on back home, especially with Ellie!! How is that going?
I have been on my mission for ONE MONTH and 2 days total! Weird, huh?
As you can tell, I am in the mission field! I left the MTC last Wednesday morning at 6 am. My MTC companion, Sister Zeiner, went to the Park City Visitor Center. They couldn't send us both there, so I am in Riverton, Utah. My new companion, Sister Abarca, guesses that we will only be together for 6 weeks and then they will send me to the Visitors Center. So right now, I am full proselyting. Let me tell you about my new companion!!! I LOVE SISTER ABARCA! She is my training sister and she is absolutely wonderful wonderful wonderful. I am convinced that I have the best trainer in the mission field. I am very grateful to have such a great example of Christ as my companion! She is seriously so bold and loving in her teaching. She talks to EVERYBODY. The first day that I was here, we were on our way to visit a member and a man & his wife were outside and she just went right up to him and started chatting with him about the gospel. They told us that they were Catholic and not interested but she was just like, We are here to tell you about the true and living gospel of Christ! She makes sure that everybody has the opportunity to learn about the Church. It is so great. I have so much to learn from her!
We are living in the basement of the Lovells. It is basically an apartment; we have a kitchen and bathroom and our own private living space.
My first few days here, we were supposed to be on bikes but since I didn't have one, we were walking. We would get rides from members so we could travel to different neighborhoods. But then day 2 that I was here, we got a car!! Hardly any of the missionaries here have cars, so it's really cool. I feel so blessed.
We have been reading the BOM, too! Tomorrow we will start reading 1 Nephi, Chapter 12. We are right on track.
So even though I have an hour to email, half of the time is spent emailing the president and I don't get that much time to write you! Oh no! But I will definitely write the rest in a letter. One cool experience...
On Friday, Sister Abarca and I visited a very less-active member. He was outside working on his porch when we walked by. We said hi and talked to him a little bit and then he told us why he hasn't been coming to church. This encounter has been on my mind every day since. He was very upset about the evilness of the world. He told us that he had been on a mission when he was younger and saw the double-lives that the missionaries lead. He talked about how he thought God made a mistake when he made humans because there are so many flaws in the world. Doctrine and Covenants 45:26 screamed in my head. I testified that men's hearts will fail them. I felt the Spirit so strongly and felt true charity for this man. I understand that he is scared and that the world is not perfect, but I explained to him that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ ARE PERFECT. The Godhead is absolutely perfect. I have been praying for this man, because I truly want him to understand that all that is unfair about life can be made right through the Atonement.
Pres and Sis Miller
President Miller is great. I haven't gotten to talk to him much except for an interview on my first day, but he let me know that he could be like my father while I was here on the mission. It was really comforting and great.
Sheri Dew

Oh! In the MTC, I got to hug Sheri Dew! She spoke at a Relief Society meeting and was completely brilliant. Afterwards, people could meet her and I got to hug her and tell her that she is a great example and she said to me, "No--YOU are a great example!" haha. Love her.   

I attended a baptism already! I wasn't technically the one who taught him, but Sister Abarca and her last companion taught him and so his baptism was still for our area. His name is Cirilo and his baptism was on Saturday. It was cool. We have another baptism next weekend for 3 children, the Christiansens. They are so sweet and I am really excited for them. They were also taught by Sister Abarca and her last companion.
We didn't go to "church" on Sunday, but we got to go to the chapel and watch the new Temple Dedication. It was amazing. We sang The Spirit of God at the end and I felt the Spirit a lot. I've never been to a temple dedication before and I really enjoyed it.
I love you so much and I miss you! I am having a wonderful time out here and I love every single second of my mission. MWAH!
Love, Sister Wall

MTC Final 2 Weeks

Sept 10
We had some really good lessons with "investigators" this week. A couple of them were our last lessons with those individuals, so it was pretty sad. At TRC, we had a real non-member. You're not supposed to know if they're church members acting or if they are real, but my companion and I both left and were like, MARY WAS A REAL NON-MEMBER. It wasn't just one thing that let us know, we could both just really feel it. She said that her neighbors had told her to come and speak with the missionaries at the MTC and so she had been before. We talked to her about so so many things.. basically everything! Joseph Smith, Restoration, Plan of Salvation, Baptism, Book of Mormon. She was so interested and asked a lot of questions and everything tied together perfectly. It went really really well. She had a Book of Mormon at home from her neighbors and said she was interested in reading it and I gave her a Mormon.org card with mine and my companion's names. It was such a good experience.

Sept 14
So my companion and I get a second P-day this week because we will not get one next week! I will just have to write you letters and you will have to type them out into a blog entry, I suppose.
So this will be hard to explain, but Sister Zeiner and I are for sure working at the Family History Center in Park City, Utah. We went to temple square with our new teacher, Sister Evans, the other day.
Visitor Center teacher, Sister Evans, Sister Zeiner, and I at Temple Square
She is completely perfect in every single way. We had a lot of fun and went on a tour with the sisters there. We will be going back on Saturday and doing companion splits. I will give a tour with an experienced sister there. Some of the things that we will be doing on our missions are: Proselyting, online chat (we practiced it on Mormon.org, it's SOOO weird to be online and chatting), referral center, and family history work. There are so many different areas that it has been overwhelming, but today I am feeling fine about it. We have talked a lot about the Spirit of Elijah and how we will be getting assistance from those who are on the other side of the veil. I think that's what I am most excited for. I LOVE to feel the Spirit; it is my favorite thing in the whole entire world. I cannot wait to form relationships and receive help from divine beings.

Week 2

September 3, 2012
So last Tuesday, my companion, Sister Zeiner, wanted to go to practice for the MTC choir and we ended up singing at the Devotional. We sang "Jesus Once of Humble Birth" and it was a really good experience. I didn't want to be that bummer companion, so even though I can't sing, I went anyway. But then I was punished! Because right after we sang, I started to lose my voice. And on Wednesday morning I woke up with a cold! I've been a raspy mess all week. It is just a cold, though, nothing too serious. I've taken Tylenol cold and had a million cough drops. The other night, my teacher, Brother Bunton, and two of the elders in our district, Elder Sommer and Elder Beech, gave me a priesthood blessing. I haven't completely healed but I am feeling better mentally, I think.
Elders Beech and Sommer with Sister Zeiner and I
 The new sisters arrived on Wednesday. Since I'm the Coordinating sister, I went to their orientation and a few of their district's other meetings to explain the rules and procedures of the MTC. I also visit the sisters in their residence hall each night and it sort of feels like I am an EFY counselor again! The first Sunday I had a bunch of meetings so I was nervous about the calling, but there are less meetings now and so I love it! It's nice to get to know them and be like a little mama bear and make sure that they are okay! 
District Photo with Bro. Lester
We had some really good meetings with "investigators" this week! Sister Zeiner and I have 5 different investigators right now that we prepare lessons for. Brother Lester isn't our teacher anymore, or else we might have 6 (His investigator was named David). The investigators we have right now are: Carson (our district teacher Brother Bunton), Katie (our district teacher Sister Bostwick), Sandy (less-active), Hely Meza (Progressing Investigator at TRC), Angie Perkins (Referral at TRC). I was having a super hard time with our investigator, Katie, this past week. She had a lot of experience with the church because of her member friend and had gone to all kind of church activities like girls camp and EFY. Sister Zeiner and I thought that it would be a fairly easy lesson, but our first time meeting her went terribly. She opened the door with, "Oh. I didn't know you would be sister missionaries." Immediately we thought that she hated us. She talked about a lot of politcal and random stuff that she didn't agree with the church about: Prop 8, men having more authority in the church than women, one church containing all of the truth, etc. We went into the meeting hoping to answer all of her questions but it was the complete wrong approach. Afterwards, my companion and I vented to each other and then felt completely terrible. Sister Zeiner and I are so similar. We feel the same about a lot of things and it makes complete sense that we are companions. The next time we went to teach Katie, I broke down and started crying like a half hour before hand. I was sick and also feeling inadequate. These are the thoughts that were running through my mind: 'What if I can't teach her? I can't teach her. I don't know how to talk to her. She hates us. If I can't teach her, the Lord will send someone else to teach her. If the Lord will send someone else to teach her then why am I here?' Ugh. It was completely terrible. My companion talked to me for a while and then we went into the lesson and explained the Book of Mormon and how it talks about Jesus Christ in the Americas and Katie was super responsive. She was really excited about that information because no one ever explained the book to her before; they just told her to read it and then kept asking her to be baptized. She said the closing prayer that night. Our third visit went really well too. She had been reading the Book of Mormon and felt good about it. She was willing to pray and sincerely ask if the Book was true. She felt the Spirit. She talked a lot and we got to know her thoughts and concerns. I felt a prompting and asked her if she got an answer to her prayer that the church was true, if she would be willing to be baptized. She said that she will be baptized if she gets an answer that the Church is true. We had a lot of other good meetings with investigators, too. I only have five minutes left of email though, and I don't know if I can tell you about them all!
In other news, I bore my testimony at our sacrament meeting with the zone. I bore my testimony of the Atonement and referenced the second verse of "I Stand All Amazed" where the lyrics say, "I marvel that he would descend from his throne divine, to rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine." I am so thankful that Christ left his perfect kingdom so that he could live and die for me. I am weak and inadequate and rebellious, but he is willing to justify my life and my actions. I love Him so much and cannot appreciate his sacrifice enough.
Also, I have memorized Joseph Smith- History 1:16-17, the First Vision and I recited it in my practice lesson the other day! 
Waiting to leave for our day at Temple Square

We are doing visitor's center training at Temple Square and I think we are going to Park City sometime in our missions but we don't know yet

I am still sick today, so feel free to send me cough drops or Tylenol or popsicles! Pk Pk!
I love you! Hopefully you get all of my letters soon! Can't wait to receive your mail!
Love and miss you!
Love, Sister Wall!

Ariel's First Email!

August 27, 2012
It's Monday, 3:15 pm. Our P-days should be every Monday, but the time that I get on the computer will probably be different every week.
You can start a blog, but I don't have much to say! I have half an hour of Email time while in the MTC and I don't get time to write letters during the week, except on P-days.
Roommates at the Provo Temple
This morning we went to a temple session at the Provo temple. I went with my companion, Sister Zeiner (Diner with a Z, that's how I remember it!)  and another Solo sister in our residence hall, Sister Bown. We are in a trio companionship on Sundays because Sister Bown is a Solo sister, which means that she doesn't have a companion. She is the only sister in our district going to Poland, so she's alone. She lives with us and we see her during the week though; if she's not with us, she is either with the elders in her district or the other 2 sisters in our residence hall who are going to Croatia. Anyhow, we went to the temple this morning and I have been a crybaby lately. I cried during the first couple of minutes of the endownment session! When it is talking about the creation and showing space and the earth. What a funny thing to cry about, huh? I just feel the Spirit so strongly sometimes and haven't gotten used to the overwhelming feeling. I just felt that everything in the endowment video was so true. And I'm so thankful that Heavenly Father had a plan and knew who we were and what the earth would be before it was ever created.
The MTC is completely wonderful. If you have any questions, you can ask, but there are basically just classes and personal study times throughout the day. I am not so sad about missing school anymore, because there are so many things to study here! Sister Zeiner and I have taught two first lessons to "investigators" so far. The teachers put on personas and act like real investigators that they have known and we go through the entire act of meeting them. It seems like it might be cheesy because you know the person, but I get nervous every time. They stay completely in character and I feel as though they are completely different people. I love teaching investigators so much! Sister Zeiner and I completely loved our first meeting with an investigator named Carson. We challenged him to baptism that day and he said Yes! Afterwards we heard that Carson is one of the most difficult investigators to teach, so we were so thrilled. Our other teacher, Brother Lester, told us that Carson sent him a message in capitol letters saying, "THESE SISTERS KNOW CHARITY." Our second investigator was named David and I had such a difficult time preparing to meet him. We got a message about his background and what his situation was. Basically he was a 22-year-old who didn't have much motivation or think that he had any purpose. He had absolutely zero background knowledge of God or pray or anything religious, basically. I thought of my primary children and how I might teach them basic and simple concepts. I cried so much, feeling the Spirit, just knowing that I had to teach him about Heavenly Father's love. When we got into his "home," I was so full of love for him. I feel the Spirit just thinking about it now, but I cared about this person so much that I had never even met. We talked to him and he was basically a brick wall but by the end of the lesson, he admitted that he was feeling the Spirit. He had never prayed before but he said his first prayer in front of us. He started it off by saying, "Dear Heavenly Father... It's David." My companion and I broke down. It was so completely wonderful. I love to teach the gospel. It is a wonderful message that makes me so happy and hopeful. And AH! I just.. I just love it.
I was called to be the Coordinating Sister. I am the only sister in the District Meetings, ha ha. I will tell you more about it later because I hardly have any Email time left.
Feel free to WRITE ME LETTERS (Hint Hint! ha ha).