Elder D. Andrew Greenman

Our son, Elder Andrew Greenman, has been called to serve in the Mozambique Maputo Mission. He has asked me to create this blog so that you, the reader, can read his letters to home. His current writing address is found below along with the most recent letter.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Fourth Week...

The MTC life is great.  Elder Heaton and I auditioned to perform a musical number in front of the entire mission.   We're in and are probably going to do it next sunday or tuesday.   On sunday and tuesday nights the MTC hosts a speaker.  On Tuesdays the speaker is always a General authority.  Elder Heaton and I are kind of getting nervous.   The classes here are great, but so is the time between 9:30 and 10:30 when all the missionaries return to their residence halls.  At this point we change out of our suits into more comfortable clothes to sleep in.  In our Zone we have a tradition called "tagging"  if a missionary is found outside his residence hall room without a missionary tag then one of us slaps on Elder Awbrey's safari hat and then about five or so Elders proceed to tag the missionary who is not wearing his tag.  
I'll send pictures soon!

Mostly all the teachers and staff here at the MTC attend BYU.  At the close of BYU's Summermester everyone's schedule here at the MTC changed to accomodate the teacher's needs.   My district has ended up getting a totally different schedule than the rest of my zone's.  P-day's are now on tuesday while the rest of the zone has their's on Friday now.

One of the advantages about my new schedule is that I'm on the same schedule as Elder Lake who is in a different zone.  He and I get to talk and see each other a few times each day.
I got and email back from Elder Awbrey, who I made good friends with here in the MTC before he left for mozambique.  He said the portuguese in mozambique is totally and so different than the portuguese taught here.  He said it's extremely impoverished and extremely warm.  He said he has a great companion and is having an incredible experience.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Third Week...

This week has been crazy!  Half of my zone is leaving either today, tomorrow or on wednesday.  Things are going to be so different this coming week.  There are going to be 20 elders joining Zone 45 this week.  Jacob Lake apparently isn't one of them.   There are two portuguese zones here at the MTC and Jacob Lake will be joining the other one. 
I've seen a lot of good friends here at the MTC,  Elder Bailey, Elder McCombs, Elder Yost, and Elder Searle.  It's great to see that they're here to serve a mission.  Yesterday, for the Sunday Devotional Elder M. Russell Ballard came and spoke to us.  It was so neat to see him, and I had a great seat that was very close.  He taught about how important "Preach My Gospel" is in this great work, and if we study it we will have a greater power to teach. He also said that every word in that book was inspired by God and had been worked on by every member of the quorum of the twelve.   Elder David Archuletta sang a beautiful piece of music before Elder Ballard began.  Then when Elder Ballard got up he said, "  Well Elder Archuletta, you're a tough act to follow."   Elder Archuletta sang The Spirit of God.   He sang one of the verses in spanish (the language of his mission) then finished off in English. 

I'm starting to really forget spanish.   Whenever I try It comes out mostly portuguese.  I guess they call it Portanol. 
This past week when we taught a "street contact" investigator. (otherwise known as my teacher) My companions and I did super well.  The spirit was so strong and we committed him to be baptized.  I can't wait to actually get to Mozambique and start implementing all of the things I'm learning right now.  I'm running out of time and there's a lot to do.  Thank you so much for your love and support and all the letters that have been sent my way.

-Elder Greenman

Monday, April 9, 2012

Hello everyone!!!   I absolutely love being a missionary and wearing the tag that shows  I'm a representative of  Jesus Christ.  On Easter Sunday all of the missionaries gathered together for sacrament meeting.  It was an absolutely incredible experience.  There were five different tables (two tables together)  with four Elders at each one to bless the sacrament.  There were fourteen trays of bread and fourteen of water on each table.   Then there were 35 or so elders to passed the sacrament, each carrying one tray in each hand.  It was so powerful to be able to see the priesthood  working together to serve so many.  It was an added blessing to partake of the sacrament because it had been almost three weeks since I had had the chance.  On top of that there were three general authorities present.  One of the seventies didn't speak, and I can't even remember his name.   The first speaker was President Packer's son.  After his words President Boyd K. Packer spoke.  It was amazing to see him there,  and be so close to him.  He mentioned how great it was to be at the MTC with us.  He said that the power here is incredible,  referring to the priesthood power, as well as the power of the spirit.  His message was how faith can totally and entirely replace fear. 
I love being at the MTC.  There is so much information available here its like drinking out of a fire hydrant.  You get some water but it mostly just hurts your face.    (Maybe that isn't the best analogy, but the point I'm trying to get across is that the learning curve here, and the speed at which I'm learning is incredible.)   I've already taught about 12 lessons in Portuguese.  I love the language of Portuguese, and its far more beautiful than spanish.  I can fully understand it now, and carried a 20 minute conversation with my teacher in portuguese, so apparently I can speak it as well.   (That is, if you wanted me to teach you about the gospel and challenge you to be baptized, i'd have it down) 
The food here is delicious, but SOOO unhealthy.  I don't know if i'll be able to take another eight weeks of this.  What I mean to say by that is, of course I'll make it, but I might need a new suit. 
Okay, in the last letter I wasn't very descriptive so I'd like to tell you a little more about my companions and about my district.   I have two companions, Elder Heaton and Elder Sorenson.   Elder Heaton is from American Fork Utah and loves being outdoors, he has even done a lot of rock climbing.  Elder Sorenson is from Mesa Arizona.  Both my companions are great, and are really fit, which is great because we've been (Pause:  At the MTC there are two gyms,  one is where you can play volleyball, and foursquare and a few other things.  The other is a weight lifting and aerobic gym.  Unpause:)   we've been going to the smaller weightlifting gym and keeping fit.   All I can say is that I'm glad for this because without it,  I'd become very unfit because of the food here. 
The learning experience here is different than what I thought it would be.  I had imagined large classes, rote memorization and repetition, and a few other things.  I was surprised to walk into my first class and see only five chairs.  Three for me and my companions and then two for Elder Chapman and Elder Montuy who are the other two Elders in district 45-E.  
My thirty minutes are up.  So I've got to get off the computer, but I'd like to let you all know that serving a mission is incredible, and very satisfying.  I love the feeling I get at the end of each day after putting in a full days work of classes and eating junk food.   Feel free write me everyone.  Letters are gold here at the MTC.
Elder Greenman
MTC Mailbox #116
MOZ-MAP 0528
2005 N. 900 E
Provo Utah  (and the zip code.  I have no clue what it is)

Editor's Note: the zip code is: 84604-1793

Monday, April 2, 2012

Andrew's P-day is Monday, thus each Monday I will post his letters. Here is the first that arrived just a few moments ago:

Hello freinds and family!  How is everyone?  I'm doing fine.  I love the MTC so much.  I Love the food too!  In fact i've already gained 20 pounds!  The spirit is so super strong here! General Conference was so great.  I absolutely loved Elder David A. Bednar's talk in Priesthood.  Well I'll start at the beginning.  My first day at the MTC was great it started off by seeing Elder Barson.  He was assigned to be my host, and It was great to have had the priveledge to talk to him.  He heads out of the MTC tomorrow, which just reminds me that I'm still going to be here for another two months.  Don't get me wrong,  I love the MTC but I can't wait to go to Mozambique.  When I got here I was given a basic tour of the "Campus" and then showed to my residence halls.  I'm in a trio companionship with Elder Heaton and Elder Sorenson.  They are awesome and fun to work with.  There are two other elders in our dorm that are going to Boston, Portuguese speaking.  They are also super cool.  In fact everyone in my zone is great.  They're all either going to Brazil, Boston, or Mozambique.  Many of them are just waiting for their visas, and as soon as they get them they'll be outta here.  On Thursday I was able to meet with my Branch President, who served in Brazil years ago as a missionary.  He called me to be the District Leader over the missionaries in District 45 E.  This district includes all the Missionaries in my dorm, which is great because it has allowed me to get to know them a lot better. 
Every thursday any missionary has the opportunity to "tryout"  for a devotional musical number.  Elder Fitzgerald and I are going to be playing "If you could hie to Kolob"  I'll be playing the piano and he'll be singing.  He's got a great voice, and He's super funny.
Things are so fast paced here, and I've got so much to do today.  I've gotta run, but expect a letter next week.  Oh, and if you'd like to send me a letter go ahead and check out dearelder.com

Elder Greenman