Monday, June 3, 2013

Manila MTC & first week

I meant to include this in the first post.
You can view Connor's profile and learn more about him and why he has chosen to serve a mission. I was impressed!! I am so proud of him, and I feel so blessed to be his mom.

Exciting to get the first prep day email. Connor's pday was change to Friday's. We were anxious to hear from him since we thought it was going to be Wednesdays. All is well:) 
Here it is:

Monkey at the Hotel first morning

Hey Mama!
Hi! Wow a lot has happened this week. First off, I met with nine other Americans going to the Manila and Quezon City missions at the Seattle airpot. The flight to Tokyo went well, from Tokyo to Manila, there were a lot of Filipino's on board. It was amazing to see and feel the difference in the people. They are so polite, loving, and they enjoy to talk. It made me very excited to be serving in the Philippines!

We got into the hotel at about 12:30am on thursday night/friday morning, and got to sleep at about 1 or 1:30. Then we woke up at 5:45 to get ready for the day cause we had to be out by 6. There was a monkey at the hotel by the way. The drive to the MTC was crazy!!! Cars and bicycles everywhere swerving in and out. It amazed me how there were no accidents. On the freeway there was a worker sweeping the shoulder on the side about two inches abay from all of the cars. 

I found out we are only the second batch of Language training missionaries here in the Philippines MTC. I've got three roomates. Elder Cava (pronounced Thava) from Fiji, Elder Seumanutafa from Samoa, and Elder Maile from New Zeland (he is my companion). He has a very deep voice and can sing really well. The other companionship both lounge around in suku vaka takagas (lava lavas) which is kind of interesting. It is very strange to be one of very few americas here. There are probably only about 100 missioaries here right now, most of them natives. It is very interesting to see the dynamics of how everyone gets along. Oh, I was also made district leader, because we each had and interview with the MTC presidency when we first got here. I have to lead 11 others schedule and make sure they are doing what they are supposed to. I am also in charge of teaching gospel doctrine class on Sundays, which is vary exciting to me. I think I have been labeled as the guy to ask any question to, about the gospel or anything else.

It is HOT here by the way, but I am really starting to get used to it. Its not as bad as I thought it would be. We also had to take a series of worm-prevention pills when we first got here. They are supposed to be able to protect us for the whole mission. That might ease mom's worries a bit haha. The days here are very full, and there is a lot to do here as a distrct leader. The staff the week before I got here was only to accommodate 40-50 native missionaries, so we have a lot more to do as district leaders. It's funny, whenever a Filipino asks where I am from "taga-saan po kayo", and I say california, they all say "wowwwwwww" in amazement. They say being an american makes it impossible not to get into a house to teach here. There is also a lot of pollution here. There is this smogy haze here that makes all the light this orangy color, kind of like when we have fires in california. We are able to teach a two role play investigators here each day, mostly in Tagalog, which is very difficult, but it is amazing how much the spirit can work to communicate to them. One funny story, we showed up "early" to an apointment, and we were trying to say sorry to her, and I said "walang anuman" which means your welcome. Whoops. So we had a good laugh over that. Learning the language is hard but I feel that I am picking it up very quickly.  We don't have much time on the computers here. I only have two sessions of 30 minutes, so I will send two emails probably. Sorry for not emailing wednesday too, they changed our schedule so that our p-day changed to today. We were also able to go the the Manila tmeple on wednesday. We wore a barong, a traditional filipino shirt, with no tie. I will probably buy one to take home. Well, I will talk to you next week! Bye bye
Connor/Elder Schroeder

top L- Missionary training center arrival,  top R- My district,
bottom L- "smoggy haze" Manila,  Bottom R- Beautiful sky 

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