Monday, April 15, 2013

April 12, 2013

Dear Family,
     This week has been another wonderful one at the MTC, or in Portuguese, the CTM. The week started out with our Sunday night devotional speaker as....Vocal Point! I don't know if that means anything to anyone else, but they are one the best acapella groups at BYU. I didn't think I was going to be able to watch them sing live, because the main auditorium fills up fast with  missionaries wanting to see, sending us to overflow seating. Overflow seating broadcasts the devotional into other large rooms at the MTC (it's not quite the same when people are singing). We had resigned to sitting in overflow seats due to the line of missionaries who arrived more than an hour early to get a good seat. Mostly they just study in line. We decided just after the door had opened to see if we could grab seats, and incredibly, we did, close to the front actually. It was great. They performed their favorite hymns, had us sing along with them on a few songs, and bore their testimonies. It was especially great to have a musical devotional because we don't really listen to music here. Usually we are studying and don't have time to listen to music; most of what we here are hymns we sing at the beginning of meetings. I loved it.
     My roommates, aside from my companion, are all serving Spanish speaking missions. Most are going to Spain and one is going to Arizona. They are a week or so ahead of us in their time here, so just coming up on the end of their third week. They decided not to speak English this week, which is an adventure for us because we speak Portuguese and English. They seem to be doing pretty well, but I have caught each one of them speaking English at least once. I say something along the lines of "Sister, what happened to only speaking Spanish?" and they quickly switch back to Spanish and continue on as if nothing had happened. It's kind of sweet actually. I think they're doing pretty well. It's a tricky business learning a foreign think you know a lot (which you do), but you don't realize quite how much more you have to learn until you  stop having the option to comment in English.
      I found a few more people I know here. Sister Sandberg from the San Jose South stake, and three of my Home Evening "siblings" from school. Also, a few people from BYU-Idaho who have recognized me.
    My companion and I have set a goal of only speaking in Portuguese next Thursday. We have smaller goals that support our preparation to accomplish this and we're excited (well, at least I am, I don't know about my companion). Most of our Portuguese is centered around Gospel topics, so if I can't ask for more food or time studying, I can still talk about the Restoration of the Gospel and the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Next Thursday will be the early part of week four here, so I have confidence we can do it. I hope you have a wonderful week. I feel as though I should type something in Portuguese, but I can't figure out how to add symbols and the words look incomplete with out the proper pronunciation symbols. I love you!

Com muito amor,
Sister Hoggan

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