Monday, April 29, 2013

Guatemala MTC - Week 2

Well, I guess we have time to write families on either mondays tuesdays
or wednesdays. This place has an a lot more flexible schedule then
Provo, haha. And the enter key isnt working so this'll just be a long
paragraph. Time in the CCM is starting to go a lot faster! In some
ways I wish I could just go to the field right now. I would pick the
spanish up, right? Spanish is actually starting to come along really
well. Our Latinos in our room are leaving tomorrow, which is kinda
sad since they teach us a lot of spanish. Pretty much every night
they teach us spanish and we teach them english. I think we get new
Nortes and Latinos on Wednesday, so I'm just hoping we get some good

The foods still really good at this place. We had lasanga last
night, I just wish we could get seconds! Umm ..tomorrow is P-day so we
get to go to the temple and some market. I think I am just gonna buy a
soccer jersey though. I am also excited to finally have an opportunity
to go to this temple. Oh yeah... and we go to Wendys! It will be nice
to be able to have a nice cold Dr Pepper!

Last night we watched some talk that Jeffrey R Holland gave to the
Provo MTC in January. In some ways I wish i was in the Provo MTC just since
they get more Apostles speaking there then we do. I think Hollands my
favorite apostle though, he makes his talks funny, but he definitely brings
the Spirit! He just talked about how if you convert nobody but yourself
on your mission, its a successful mission. I think one of the twelve
apostles is coming to speak in like three weeks here. That'll be fun, I just
still remember having Christopherson come speak when I was on my mini
mission. It was a great experience!

Umm... Sundays here are kind of intense. I haven't been
called up to give a talk yet, but you have to write a 5 minute talk in
Spanish and then for Sunday school prepare a ten minute lesson with
your companion in english. Its just random for who goes up to teach.
I pretty much just copy a section from Preach My Gospel,  though and then write a
paragraph of my own with the help of the Latinos.

All in all, im just ready to get out into the field!

Love you guys! Jason

Oh also, can I get both Grandmas email addresses? It would be fun to write
them sometime! When does Mark enter the MTC? Also, do you guys know
if Nathans started his papers yet? I can already tell a mission will
be a great experience, its kinda just nice to get away from the world
and focus on strengthening your testimony for two years! At least
thats how I feel two weeks in...haha. Sundays here kinda feel like EFY.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Guatemala MTC - Week 1

Hola mi familia,

The MTC is going great. Spanish is coming a lot faster then it ever came in school, probably because all we do here from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm is sit in class and estudio espanól. I actually have 5 roommates. My companions name is Elder Dickerman and then we have four latinos in our room. Its fun having four latinos in our room because they teach us more in an hour of talking to them then we learn in class. We teach them english, but they all know a lot since I guess they all listen to American music. It's actually kinda funny they're like two months behind on American music here then we are in America.

The food here continues to be muy excelente. Its like half american food and half native food, but some of the native food is actually really good. I'm definitely eating more fruit then I've ever eaten in my life haha. They have this fruit juice thats just in bottles but its seriously amazing. Sunday actually went fairly fast I was just happy to not have to speak. Sadly, I still cant roll my R´s but my patriarichal blessing says ill be able to so i have faith. I'm just worried that if I dont learn to roll my R's I wont be a very effective missionary. Thats cool to hear about Mark and Ryan's farewell. I wonder how Ryan is liking the Provo MTC so far? When does Mark enter the mtc again? I guess he has probably only been there a couple hours.

So my watch broke like the day after I got here to the CCM. Its been difficult not knowing the time but I'm getting pretty good at asking people que hora es haha. The other really tough thing about being here at the ccm is just having to sit in a chair all day. We really never leave the CCM. In some ways I wish I could just go in the field and learn spanish while I'm out there.
Jason is 7th from left on Second Row
Yesterday we had a member from the quorom of the seventy come and speak to the whole ccm. He focused on the story of Alma and Amuleck in Alma chapters eight through ten. It was a really good talk, and the spirit was really strong during it. Really, the spirit is really strong in the entire ccm. Yesterday my district went to the temple but unfortunately I had been up the night before with a case of the big d. I didnt want it to hit during a session, so I didnt go. I am excited to be able to go to the temple next tuesday though. P-days here are usually on tuesdays I think, but I guess we dont always write on p days. Tell Kyle the volleyball is still going strong, ha, I have a group here that I play volleyball every day with. They just have like a big concrete area with a volleyball net and a basketball hoop. I also tried playing soccer with some of the latinos, and lets just say their just a little bit better haha.

I never realized how tough it is to share the gospel. Currently, me and my companion are teaching an investigator, I'm not sure if it's for real or just role play, but its just difficult only teaching the basics. He wants his family to be happy, so we try to explain how the Gospel makes families happy. Were supposed to focus a lesson today on the law of chastity so it may be kinda awkward, but hopefully the Spirit will be there. My testimonies grown a lot in just one week here.

So yeah the toughest things about the CCM so far has been not being able to roll my R's ,everyone else in my district can, having to sit in a chair all day and waking up at 6:30. Thanks for the earplugs though theres a latino in my room and his snoring is seriously the loudest I've ever heard in my life haha. It's tough going to bed at 1030!

Well have a fun time in Phoenix parents and enjoy the sunshine! Who is Kyle staying with while you guys are gone?

Con amor,


Oh and... the bread at this place is amazing haha

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Leaving Utah and first letter from Guatemala

I will put pictures of the airport on here soon but wanted to get Jason's first letter posted after he got to the Guatemala MTC.  More to follow....

Hola Mi Familia!,
Just wanted to write to say I got to Guatemala.  Lets just say the bus ride over was crazy.  It was pretty much Mexico driving times 10, I dont know how we didnt get in an accident.  There were even more missionaries on the flight from LA, and half of the plane was missionaries  I seriously havent slept since monday night so Im pretty tired.  Dont worry though I havent dozed off in any classes yet.  The MTC president and his wife talked to us today and shared their testimonies.  Therir pretty impressive people!  The MTC president shared a story similar to the stake presidents about how its the little things you do on a mission that decide if you are an effective missionary. 
The food here is actually pretty good.  The best though so far has been spaghetti since its american food haha.  The MTC president told us theyll ease us in slowly.  I was actually able to put down some beans today too!  They wernt all that bad but I definitely would still not choose to eat them.  Also, I have a funny story.  Apparently all the new missionaries hair cuts are too long and a lot of us got dragged outside to get haircuts.  Kinda crazy though since I just had my hair cut last week!
Apparently I was supposed to bring the shot vaccination form that was filled out even though we filled it out online.  They told me to have you guys scan it to me so we are kind of in a pickle.  Do you guys still have it?  I dont know where it said to bring the yellow form but all the missionaries brought it but me. 
My district is filled with some pretty funny guys so it will be fun getting to know them.  I also have one american roommate so far whos from California and one native.  Their pretty cool! well talk to you guys later.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Days before departure

We spent the last few days before Jason left for his mission together as his family as Allison and her family came in from Denver and Melissa came down from Salt Lake City.  We had a great time together and below are some pictures of the things we were up to...

Allison made us a full size replica of Jason for us to have while he was gone, as you can see we had alot of fun with it and it looks remarkably like him.  Eddie dislikes it intensely and runs from it whenever it gets near him  :)  Under his face is the face of George W Bush, but we like Jasons face better!

Sometimes it is hard for some to believe that Jason is a full time missionary...

Jason played alot with his nephews who will change alot while he is gone...
We celebrated Kelly's birthday a few days early so Jason could be there for the bash...

We also played alot of Apples to Apples which seemed to be the game of choice that weekend, watched about every minute of family movies taken since the kids were little and Jason watched his last movie "42" which he has been looking forward to for a long time.

We will miss Jason but we made alot of good memories as a family and he is ready to go forth and serve!

Set Apart as a missionary

On  April 15, 2013 Jason was set apart by President Gottfredson as a full time missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  All his family gathered together including his Grandma Richardson. Jason received some wonderful counsel from the Stake President and was blessed with many things that will help him as he departs.  His final counsel to Jason consisted of two wise words....HAKUNA MATATA, very wise advice  :)

Pictures from the night he was set apart...



After this, President Gottfredson asked Jason to bear his testimony to his family.  We are proud of you, Elder Richardson!!

El Salvadoran Food

As all our family gathered the weekend before Jason left on his mission, we had heard of an El Salvadoran restaurant in Downtown Provo that served authentic El Salavadoran food.  Jason had heard alot from returned missionaries how great pupusa's were and so we all trekked down to this restaurant the Saturday before he left to see what kind of food he would be eating for the next two years.

As Linda walked in the restaurant she found out how authentic it was when the people only spoke Spanish.  We all ordered different kinds of pupusa's, with cheese, cheese and bean, pork, beef etc including one with cheese and loroco which is a kind of flower that tastes like a cross between broccoli and cauliflower that is indigenous to El Salvador.  A pupusa is a very thick tortilla that is stuffed with all kinds of different stuff.  You can kind of see them on Jason's plate in the picture below.   I also ordered beans and rice with thick tortillas which was pretty good.  I'm not sure everyone really enjoyed the food since it was so different from a spice and taste perspective but it wasn't horrible.  I think Jason thought he would love them and didnt particularly care for them.  The loroco was particularly bad so I hope he doesnt have alot of that down there. 

But I think once he gets down there, he will learn things he likes and will get used to the spices and taste of food after awhile.  You can see from the picture above that he doesnt look to thrilled with pupusa's!  :)