So much to tell you and not enough time. Where do I begin? Sorry in advance for the bad grammar, we don't have enough time to proofread.
So anyways, the MTC finished strong and we left off the train to meet the mission president. We were standing around for a good 30 minutes until President Winn pulled up and welcomed us. he's a bit intimidating to say the least.
So we get in his car (me and three others from my MTC district) to be the first to get interviewed. We pull up to the house and President says to us "See that white fence? That's President Monson's backyard. The mission home is across the street from the prophet's house. WHATTTT?
So anyways, the first day in the mission home was relaxing. We had a great dinner and hung around until we went to bed. We got up the next morning and went to pick up breakfast for the missionary introductions. Sister Winn was driving us and one guy asked what we were dressed up so nice for and Sister Winn told him (jokingly) that we were transporting drugs. We all laughed so hard. President and Sister Winn are amazing and it's sad to see them leave after just meeting them.
So we get to the church house, and they explained to us the procedures of the day. We got paired up with our companions, and I got placed with the Elder that was S. Williams' trainer. His name is Elder A., and he's probably the most focused missionary I've EVER met. It's awesome because he's such an amazing trainer. In our area is me, Elder A., Elder Ar. (he doesn't speak any English and is from Colombia), and (guess who!) Elder Williams. I'm serving with my roommate from freshman year! It's awesome! I'm actually the only assigned English missionary in my district, so everyone else speaks Spanish. As a result, I'm now unofficially studying Spanish during the extra hour of study time. Guess I am learning another language after all.
Later that day, we went street contacting in Temple Square and we had an awesome experience placing some Book of Mormon's. When we went back to our area, it was crazy how tired I was, but we taught 3 more lessons. We have a total of 8 investigators right now with 2 baptisms set up. We're expected to also have a baptism next week. The tutoring has helped immensely because I came kinda pre-trained where I don't need to learn how to teach. It makes it a lot easier for all of us!
We got back to the apartment and I discovered that I'm living and serving in the ghetto. We're in the lowest tiers of society, and within the ranks of our investigators, we are teaching a reforming Wiccan witch (yes, Taylor a witch like the one in Oswego), a prostitute, and a drug dealer. It's incredible to me to see how sad so many of the situations are. The Church provides hope and meaning for people that don't really have any purpose in their lives other than smoking crack and getting drunk. It's just sad. It's probably worse than Cicero, but it makes me happy I get to be a part of giving the gospel to the people who need it most.
So far I've witnessed two drug busts and a few drug deals. Mom, DON'T WORRY. We're doing great. It's a bad area, but during the day it's pretty laid back. I'm telling you all of this to just let you know how much I LOVE you and Dad. Just after this week I've gained more perspective than I ever have had before. Everyone here respects the missionaries, so we never have any trouble at all. The lessons have been great. I've had too many spiritual experiences to list. Everyone knows we're genuinely good people who are helping others so everyone stays friendly and open to us. I've grown used to being friendly and nonjudgemental. This is openly stated as the most difficult area in the mission for a reason, and I feel privileged to be given the opportunity and trust to help here.
By the way, cool fact: My companion and I cover the Wells stake, and one of the wards is called the Jefferson ward. That's the ward that President Monson was bishop over a long time ago. He actually comes to visit it on occasion so chances are I'll get to meet him in the time period that I'm serving here.
Mom, Dad, thank you so much for raising me in the Church. It's incredible how much of an impact it has on those who do their best to follow it. The difference in each household is night-and-day and you can feel it to the very core. The work is incredibly hard but worth it every bit.