Thursday, December 18, 2014

My First Week at the CCM (MTC)

December 18, 2014

Hello All!

Mexico is everything I didn’t think it would be--If that makes sense! haha  Where to start is the big question!  Since it’s the first week I have tons to talk about and I promise next week’s email won’t be so long!

On my flight from Denver to Atlanta I flew with a cute little African American sister who was more nervous than me.  haha   So we kept each company and that was a blessing to have her there for sure! From Atlanta I flew with like 25 other missionaries. haha and I got a meal on the plane and it was delicious.  I thought dad said no free snack!  haha   Once I got to the Mexico airport some lady took all the food you packed me mom!!!  It was so rude of her but I did eat a little before she and her training dog took it away!  I guess maybe that sandwich smelled like a bomb or something!  I led the whole group through customs because I knew what to do thanks to the Japan trip and it made me feel really cool!

Once at the CCM (Language Training Mission) we had to check in, eat and email home saying we were safe.  Some kids had to get shots but I was all squared away so man I was doing good! Then I went to my casa and met my companion! His name is Elder Billman and he is from Saratoga Springs, Utah!  He is shorter than me which makes me feel really good and what an awesome elder he is! At first he was kind of reserved and I thought, “Uh oh, this is gonna be a long 6 weeks”, but now we are like best friends and he doesn’t even mind when I say, “Hey elder I need to use el baño again (which happens like every hour because I drink a lot).   My other two roommates are Elder Bird and Elder Bishop!  Both are shorter than me also so I’m feeling like a king now!!

We try to keep our room and bathroom clean but you know how 18 and 19 year old boys are! But really we are pretty good. 

Sunday we had interviews and devotionals and I had to write my first talk in Spanish but I didn’t end up giving it so I feel really blessed!  That night we met the rest of our district and everyone was really reserved so I jumped in and taught the whole district how to play “signs” which is a game I learned at the Hill Cumorah Pageant while President T. interviewed us one at a time!

President T. is a counselor in our branch/zone and he is the only one we’ve met yet but I really like him.  He is young and American.  Once he interviewed all of us he pulled me and my comp out of the room and asked us to be district leaders.  That was very humbling and I didn’t feel like I was the guy for the job but we said yes and were made district leaders-- me for the first 3 weeks and then my companion for the last 3 weeks here at the CCM.  As a district leader I got to lead a devotional, set an example and go to leadership meetings to help better our district.

Thursday was orientation day so no P-day which stunk but we learned a lot and met our teacher Hermano Hernandez!   He is 25 and Mexican and really, really funny and spiritual.  He is actually leaving us in 2 weeks because he is moving to Salt Lake for LDS Business College.

Friday was our first real day and we taught an investigator that night in Spanish.  Since then we’ve taught him every night and man I say pretty much nothing. I just read out of Preach My Gospel.  haha   His name is Isaac Hernandez.  He is very interested in the gospel but lives with his girlfriend and has 2 kids so we’ll see where it goes.

Correction—in case I made this all confusing... Thursday night we were called as district leaders, not Sunday.

On Sunday night President T. met with all of us for more interviews on worthiness and stuff like that which is protocol and after that he pulled me and my companion out again and asked us to be zone leaders!  This was even more humbling and it’s practically unheard of for such young elders to be zone leaders!  But I’m trying real hard to be a good leader and watch over the zone! So the new district leaders are Elder Richardson and Elder Pratt.  They are both cool and I like them as my leaders.  Pretty much our district is the tightest district here and we have so much fun together and laugh constantly.  They have helped me so much.  My Spanish is non-existent and I’m the worst in my district.   I ask all to please pray for me that I may learn the language quickly and permanently.  I’m not quite discouraged yet but I know prayers will help.  Everyone here said that the first 4 days would be the worst days of your life... that hasn’t been true for me. The past four days and all the rest leading up to right now have been some of the best days of my life and I am so so so so so happy to be a missionary. This is my calling and I know this is where I am supposed to be.  I have no more time to write but so much more to say.  I learned cool lessons from the Book of Mormon that I want to share but just can’t!   Maybe next week!  Thank you all for the emails!  Sorry my responses were short but I did read them and they remind me of your love! 

One last thing, I’ve been eating a ton of food here-- like a ton!  I’m kind of getting chubby so yeah that’s that.  I got food poisoning or something on Monday and it was not a good experience.  I am better now.  I hope all is well and I send my love to all!  Pictures coming soon!

With love,
Elder McClure

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