Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The Week of Many Travels and Little Comprehension

The time of the week has come. I am finally a big girl and get to have PDay on Mondays!! The jingle, "Im a big kid now" is in my head. =) First off I am sorry if the punctuation is not right in this email. They have a spanish keyboard with english stickers so I am not sure where everything is. Including the apostrophe mark. On to the good stuff though, my week in recap form. 

Sunday(seems like an eternity ago)- We had three devotionals this day with the departure devotional, the main devotional, and rewatching The Character of Christ before we left. Crazy spiritual high and exhaustion. The devotional speaker was Chad Lewis and he did a great job. Funny story. After his devotional we were trying to find a bathroom and went out these doors right into Chad Lewis and all these missionaries getting pictures with him. My companions all shook his hand but I was too far back. Good thing I guess because I would have never washed that hand again and would have probably gotten a parasite here in Paraguay because of it. =) Jokes! 

Hermanas Myers, Farrow, Albach, plus 2 more
Monday- This day was nuts. We were up by four am to finish all the last minute things so that we could make our shuttle at six. We got on the shuttle and they dropped us off at the provo frontrunner station and we rode it up to the airport. Crazy. 


Enjoying my last Cafe Rio for a while
Then I made it through security and the first thing we did was go and get our last meal at Cafe Rio. It was delicious. The lady only charged me 2$ for it because she just turned in her papers and was being super kind. Then on the plane I sat next too two non members which was perfect because I had been praying to have the opportunity to share the gospel. Which i did for the last 40ish minutes of our flight to Georgia with a man named Fred. He is super smart and is an engineer but is only in his 20s. Crazy. Great opportunity. Then we got to Georgia aiport which was crazy because we had to go to a completely different concourse to call our families. Then we boarded the plane to Buenos Aires at 9pm with the whole Uruguayan rugby team that had just been playing in Canada. I know because I sat next to two of them on the whole 10 hour flight. They slept for most of it, made fun of us for the rest. But they did let me know those two little facts. It was so crazy because on the plane everyone was already speaking spanish. The flight was long...and went into...

(Some of this is review for those of you who read my blog...but oh well)

Buenos Aires Airport
Tuesday- We arrived in Buenos Aires!! Hurray!! We met our contact and were put onto a bus and headed to a different airport in Buenos Aires. Passed the temple. Beautiful!!! At the other airport a nice man bought all of the missionaries in our group gelato. It was so sweet! Then we had to wait for seven hours for our flight out of Posadas at 640pm. There was no room on the plane for my carry on so I covered it with a blanket and sat in awkward uncomfortableness for the hour and half flight to Posadas. We arrived and were greeted by the Presidente and his wife and the office elders with a banner. I sent pictures. It was pretty awesome. Except for the no understanding what was happening thing. Then we went to his house, had dinner, and then got set up at a chucci(high class/fancy) hotel. 
WELCOME TO THE ARGENTINA POSADAS MISSION!
Wednesday/Thursday- The food here is so full of carbs. Everything is bread. Crazy!! You already know about my crying incident. Yikes. No more tears since though. Unless I cut onions then no gurantee. Anyways after that incident and after I wrote that email we played games with one of the AP's Elder Silva. We actual played signs in spanish. Needless to say I killed it. =)

This awesome statue apparently has no name...
at least that we can find.
From a distance
Then we went and were given five pass along cards we had to hand out around the city. It was so scary but I went with Hermana Houtz and we were able to do it. Hurray! Walked back to the mission home and had dinner. Oh...and dun dun dun I met my trainer!!! Her name is Hermana Lindsay Chandler. She is the sweetest thing ever and this is her last transfer in the mission.

Puerto Iguazu, Argentina
We also found out we would be staying in the mission home that night because we were taking a taxi up to Puerto Iguazu at 330AM the next morning. It is 6 hours away by bus. We made it in four hours. We had to go there for the Paraguayan consul again because the one in Posadas shut down. It was a long day full of sitting and sleeping but still fun. Hna. Chandler and I had a lot of time to talk. We got back from Iguazu at about four or five that night and had our new missionary orientation with the office elders and Hna. LaPierre. Then we had food and went to bed. 
Hermanas Chandler and Albach - 

Friday-We traveled to our area Ciudad Del Este this day. It is a six hour bus ride. Can you say traveling for days?? It was crazy! Just more opportunities to sleep though I guess.=) When we arrived it was pouring rain. And when I say pouring I mean I have never seen rain drops that big in my life. We had to take all my luggage to our pension (apartment) which was about ten minutes away and then lug it up to the third floor. Totally awesome welcome and adventure for my first day in my first area. Then we got cleaned up and I changed and we had lunch with a member named Carmen. It was super good. She made this dessert with milk, frozen corn, and something like cinnamon. Delicious!! I learned that rico=delicious. Then we went to the grocery store and got me some stuff to last me the weekend. I spent 96 mil in Guarani. Cool right? We then went out tracting and met Jose and Jorge. They seemed really nice and we planned to visit them later that week. 

Posadas
Saturday-My first full day of tracting and in the field! Crazy!! We met Fatima a lady that was super sweet. We left her with a Libre de Mormon (LDM) and promised to come back and see if she had received an answer about it. We had lunch with the Olivera family who is from Brasil. They are so sweet and they have the cutest little daughters in the world. The food was SOO good. Didn't want to leave because it was so cold in their pension. Then we had a lesson with Christian who is a recent convert of Hna. Chandlers but has been struggling. It was really good. We met him at the church. I tried to teach in spanish but then he told me he couldn't understand me and to try in english. Whoops. Embarrassing but oh well. So I did. I think he got most of it. The spirit was so strong. I loved it. Then we met up with the other Hnas in the area and had ice cream to celebrate my first real day in the field. Yay! Good first day!

Sunday- Crazy day! Had church from 8-11am. Didn't understand most of it. But I did understand that two of the three members of the bishopric told me I would be bearing my testimony in sacrament meeting. Not too bad actually. They have relief society first and sacrament last so I had some time to prepare. Not really. They were awesome though and said it didn't matter what I said but that the spirit was there. We then went with Ana, a member of only four years, later that day to visit some of our investigators. They ended up being busy so we decided to tract and, boy, was it awesome. We met and taught Alicia and Dalica. They were so great. I spoke in both lessons. It was totally broken Spanish but I know that as I open my mouth and am willing to look like a fool the Lord will bless me. I really believe that Dalicia has some potential. She really needs the gospel in her life right now. Then we finished by visiting the familia Gonzalez who are recent converts and just helped show them how they could watch conference online. It was great. Felt good to actually be doing work of the Lord and feel like I am beginning to understand better what is being said around me. 

Monday-Today- First Day in the field
We had a zone meeting in the morning where we went over our numbers and did a practicar (practice). Then we went grocery shopping again and then we went back to the pension and I was able to finally unpack and get everything organized which felt so good. I was so happy to be all in and ready to make it feel like home. Then we came to the cyber and I have been emailing you all. You are all awesome. The Lord is good and He is there. The work is hard for a reason, it helps us to come closer to our Savior and understand that the work was never easy for Him. Love you all and I will write more about our adventures and progress next week!! 

Remember who you are and who you ultimately represent!!


Hermana Albach
Hotel?? Hahahaha

I think this is an LDS church with the orange roof (Posadas)


Kaitlyn's Travel Map

After corresponding with Kaitlyn yesterday, I looked up her travels. Unbelievably, she traveled within 30 miles of her first area only to travel all the way back to Posadas to travel again the next day.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Don't cry for me Argentina because I already cried once...

October 22, 2014

Kaitlyn has arrived in Argentina! She needs all the prayers you can offer in her behalf.

Great opening title of an email right? Don´t worry..its true but esta bien (okay). So I am officially here in Argentina, and not only in Argentina but in Posadas, Argentina. Es muy bonita aqui. Pero es muy diferente por mi porque no hablo much español. (It is very nice here. But it is different for me because I do not speak much Spanish) Este es (This is) the most I can speak.  

Anyway the whole travel thing was crazy. We had to wait in the Buenos Aires airport from 11AM until 6:40PM when our flight left for Posadas. Needless to say I was super duper cansado (tired) by that time. Then my carry on wouldn´t fit in the overhead compartment so we just shoved it where my feet would go and I straddled it and then covered it all with a blanket for the hour and a half flight to Posadas. Needless to say it was not comfortable. At all, pero es bien porque (but it's okay because) I regained feeling in my legs eventually. :) Also this keyboard is the weirdest thing in my life right now so sorry if this doesn´t make much sense. 

Well we arrived in Posadas around 8PM and our Presidente and his wife were there and not long thereafter the office elders came in with a banner that they rolled out. I will definitely try and figure out how to send pictures later. We then traveled to the church and mission office where they had all our luggage and told us to get enough stuff for the next two days and to put it into some Chango Mas (Walmart) bags. Then we had to fill out some paperwork for our visas in Paraguay. During this time all the elders found out I was the enfermera (nurse) and they all kept making jokes in spanish to me and I couldn´t understand anything. It is muy frustrando por mi pero yo se con tiempo (very frustrating but I know that with time) it will get easier for me. Pero ahora es muy difIcil (But now it is very difficult). After that they drove us to the mission home in a different part of the city and we had dinner, which was empanadas and it was delicioso (delicious). Then we got our stuff and we headed to a hotel where the hermanas would be staying for the night. One of the sister training leaders was with us (me and two other hermanas from Mexico). The hotel was muy chucci (posh, classy). It had a blow dryer. Definitely a different world down here. I talked with Hermana Houtz for quite a while. She only has one transfer left and then she will be heading back to Salem, Utah. She is awesome. 

We then went to bed and woke up today at 6AM and got ready to go to the Paraguayan consulate for our visas. Everything here is carbs. Breakfast was almost all carbs and desserts. It is crazy. No worries I just had pineapple, the fruit salad stuff Steven Nish made, and some corn flakes and eggs. Not been super hungry since I have arrived. Then we went to the embassy and then we came back to the mission home. I went and met with President LaPierre and it was great. He is a great man and brought some great insights to what I am feeling and going through right now. He then told me that I would be heading to Paraguay on Thursday to train with Hermana Chandler (the current mission nurse in Paraguay) there for her last transfer and then in December I will take over as the mission nurse in Paraguay. Es muy loco pero yo estoy entusiasmado por ese desafio (it's crazy but I'm up for the challenge). Then I went down and one of the AP´s had us do a practicar (practice) where he told us what kind of investigator he was and what his problem was and we were supposed to pick a verse and share with him how it could help him and then challenge him to be baptized. I got so scared because both of the AP´s are native and it is hard for me to understand them completely let alone speak to them without being embarrassed or intimidated but I was determined to do well. Then I heard the hermanas before me that have been here for forever go and I lost fe (faith). Needless to say, it was rough and I started crying so hard I was gulping and I had no idea why. Never done that before. I really don´t know where the tears came from but I finished sharing anyway and ended with my testimony and then took some time in the bathroom pouring out my heart to my Father in Heaven a little bit. I know this is going to be hard but so worth it. I don´t care if the language comes fast or not I just prayed to know he was there and he loved me and I was filled with peace. The STL Hna. Houtz came and we talked for a bit about it. She is so understanding and so sweet. So no worries just totally made a fool out of myself in front of all the elders and hermanas that are new and the AP, but then after he shared Helaman 10:4 with me as the scripture in response to what I shared with him. Look it up. It was comforting and so sweet of him to share. 

We are just at the mission office now to let you all know I am alive. I have a six hour bus ride ahead of me to my area in Paraguay tomorrow pero (but) my mission president said it is a great city and the strongest unit of members in the entire mission so I am excited. The work is true and real and on the way here I was able to share the gospel with a lot of people on the planes (in English) but still, there is nothing like sharing the gospel and having the extra strength that comes from realizing what name is always present on you. The name of the Son, Jesus Christ. Through whom everything is possible. Even hard and difficult things like this. I am excited to get to work and I am excited to learn so much more and love these people. It is going to be great. 

Chow,

Hna. Albach

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Finalmente...Week Seis

October 18, 2014

Wow. This email has been hard to even start to write. My thoughts are all over the place. Stress to the max is happening in the arena of packing. Don't you fret though I think I can handle this. :P So with that exciting intro here we go. :)

Saturday- Really not much happened after I finished writing you all. Burger Supreme run. Then we had a substitute teacher that was very handsome and the other Hermana's were dying over him.
Pretty funny to watch all the Elders reaction to it. He was a great teacher though and had us do a practice lesson on "how to begin teaching" with another district in our zone. It was great practice and was great feedback for our companionship from a fellow Hermana. Great day.

Sunday- Well I was finally released from STL which was kind of a relief but a great experience. I sang Gethsemane (Kaitlyn singing last Easter with Danielle Lewis on the violin) in sacrament meeting. It was powerful and I felt the truthfulness of what I was singing so strongly. That night our devotional was by a man that is over all the church media so he showed us a bunch of mormon messages and it was awesome. He showed us the rough cut for the Christmas message. It is going to be sweet and be all over all the boards in NYC right across from MTC. It is awesome. He also showed us #ItWasMom which I had never seen. It is so worth the watch. It is truly how I feel about all the women in my life that have guided me along my way. Aunts. Coaches. Second moms. But most especially. It is the definition of how I feel about my mom and how incredible she is and how integral a part of life she is to me. Love you mom!! Then he followed it by Because of Him which I think I talk about every email. Whoops. It is just that good. This time was different though because I was overwhelmed by the spirit and an excitement and desire to share His message and to teach people about Him. It was incredible. 

We're so happy she got the camera!
Monday- The highlight of this day was getting a working camera with everything figured out. Thanks Mom and Dad!! You are awesome! This is literally all my journal entry says. Pretty sad. I must have been running short on time. The problem is that it was so many days ago in missionary time that I really don't remember anything special that happened that day. Sorry. 
Tuesday- Lots of awesome things happened this day. One of which was meeting a German, French, and British missionary all in the same companionship on our way back from main campus. The french elder was black. It was seriously so awesome! They had just arrived and about died crossing the cross walk when it was the "Do Not Walk" sign. The struggle is real for them, but it was neat to meet them. Hna. Farrow and I were up on main campus getting some alterations done to our clothing. 50cts per item. Killer deal! Pays to be a missionary! :) This was also the day that we had our first skype lesson. It ended up being with one of the head haunchos at the CCM in Mexico named Alexandra. She was super sweet and nice. We taught about Christ and bore our testimonies and then ended by singing her "I Know that My Redeemer Lives". It was exciting but made my little Spanish glaringly apparent. That is ok, there is always room for improvement and through the Lord and hard work all things are possible. That night we had the best devotional ever. it was incredible. He is a quorum of the 70. Larry Lawrence. His devotional was how Satan gets us and how we can conquer him. I am going to share some of it with you. It was so awesome. 

Ways Satan Gets You
1. Straight and blatant temptation and doubt
  - He whispers these so that you don't recognize it as him. 
 The way in which to overcome it is simply shown by President Heber J. Grant. He would just say, "Mr. Devil SHUT UP!" Just rebuke him and make him leave. He also said that having scriptures memorized can help with this as well. 
2. Use of lies and deception
    - The spirit of the Lord will always tell you the truth however. LISTEN! 
    - Satan is not a creator. He is a destroyer!
3. Father of Contention 
   - Contention=NO SPIRIT
   - "Spirit of the Lord will always depart with contention no matter who is at fault." James E. Faust
    - It all begins with fault finding! STOP IT!
4. Discouragement
    - Weakens testimony with this. Stay Strong!
    - Pray to conquer Satan!! Best tactic!
    - Negative words expose your weaknesses to Satan. Bridle your tongue. Satan CANNOT know your thoughts unless you utter them aloud. 

Favorite quote from all of this, "The devil targets those who have the most potential for eternal happiness." Simply put life is going to get harder the closer you come to God because your potential for eternal life is that much greater. One of our presidency wives said, " We must be doing something right when everything is going wrong." Remember this in those tough times. It just means you are on the right path! We all can do hard things and overcome Satan if we turn to our Father in Heaven and Savior. If you are being obedient he will have no influence over you! Oh fun fact. My teacher taught Steven Nish two years ago and in class told me that he FB stalked me to add him as a friend. Kind of random. Small world. 

Wednesday- I fasted this day for a couple of reasons. It was such a great day. I received my answer through feelings of peace and affirmation. The Lord does answer! He loves us! We saw our teachers mission video compilation and we heard the song from Best Two Years with the words, "Don't you know, can't you see, I'm not who I used to be. See what the Lord has made of me." That is my new mantra. I want to come back a better person with a greater relationship with my Lord and Savior. 

Cheeez!
Superwoman jammies
Thursday- I received the BEST package ever! Seriously so many goodies and fun stuff and necessities. Thanks mom! We played kickball this day and it was awesome!! We also ended up doing the cut-off drill with four of us that played baseball/softball. It was awesome. I am still sore. We had our worst lesson by far this night. Just was struggling to say anything in Spanish. Then I was asking our investigator to read versiculo siete but instead of saying siete I said 7 and didn't even realize I had switched into English until he corrected me. Then Hna. Farrow started laughing and I lost it. It was bad. Long day....but I can always get better right?! Great memory.
Halloween package

Friday- We had all day long infield orientation. It was good and got me excited for the work, but was super long! We had our final class with Hno. Cuadra AKA one of the most influential men I have met in my life up to this point. It was incredible. We sang Come Unto Christ to him at the end and then he played his viola for us. He is amazing! Was in the BYU orchestra and his sister won Spain's Got Talent. Seriously they are all musically gifted. He then gave the most incredible prayer in which he prayed for all of us individually in spanish and blessed us with so many things. It was powerful. He is so Christlike and endures so much. He has seen so much death in his life but through it all has come even closer to his Savior. My favorite thing he said was that he wants no empty seats when he sees us again on the other side. We need to all hold on and stay strong. Amazing. Funny thing. He pronounces muddy buddies like moody booties....makes my day!! 
Hno. Cuadro with her district
Trying to 'Gangster' (??)
Saturday- Stressful but great. We just so happened to see Hno. Cuadra after our temple session behind the temple. Weird right? Definitely not planned. Love him. Oh and we get to see Meet the Mormons tomorrow night after our devotional! Awesome right?! Well this is my last email from the Provo MTC. Monday morning bright and early I will be heading on the adventure of my life to Argentina. Thank you for all the prayers. I will talk to you next week! 

Remember who you are, what you represent, and who you truly have the potential to become! You can come off conquerors of Satan! Be strong! The little things count! Love and OPEN YOUR MOUTH!! Share this beautiful message and help those missionaries in your areas find the lost sheep! 

Love you all so much, 

Hermana Albach 



The Whirlwind We Call...Week 5

Hola everybody!! Buckle your seatbelts because off....we....go!!!!!!

Travel papers have arrived!
Saturday Evening: So after I was done emailing everybody we had dinner. If I've said it once I've said it a million times. Main campus food is ridiculously delicious compared to ours. Loved it!! Then we were able to watch Woman's Conf while the Elders watched Priesthood. Wow! So power packed. Perfect end to an incredibly uplifting day! Dieter F. Uchtdorf made my eyes leak again. Dang things. :P Funny thing. I learned that Hermana Myers gets all sorts of crazy and silly when she is tired. Like Mama Steph kinda crazy after 10 PM! Made me laugh. 

Sunday: Suffice it to say that General Conference at the MTC is like Christmas that came two months early. We didn't have to be anywhere until 9. So we had breakfast later...like 7:20 and then went back to our residence hall and read scriptures and catnapped before we were bussed up to main campus. The first session was so incredible. Especially all the talks about prophets. After the third one in a row we were positive President Monson was going to announce something crazy like we all needed to make a mass exodus to China...ok not really that, but something amazing I guess. Instead he talked about truly following and being a better disciple of our Savior. As I have thought about it more what he taught us was profound. In order to bring this work forth and to progress along the strait and narrow path we need to laern of him and become more like him. Anyways at lunch I saw a cute and familiar face. Caree Campbell. I couldn't remember her last name so I just called out "CAREE" We hugged and she cried as per usual. it was so good to see her! She looked beautiful and happy! Hurray for roommates turned missionaries of the sister variety. So the best or almost the best part was our devotional that night. Nothing beats conference of course but having a fireside from Vai Sikahema came pretty darn close. For those of you who don't know who he is....LOOK HIM UP!! Currently he is the sports director at NBC in Philadelphia and was on the BYU team when they were National Champs and had a long NFL career. The best part is he uses all of it to proselyte or share the gospel. During his devotional he made us close our journals and just listen and record our feelings later. A devotional has never been over faster with me wanting more! It was so cool! The three things I took from his devotional were 
1. Do NOT be afraid to open your mouth and share!! Even and especially if you are not a missionary!! 
2. Learn the simple principles of our gospel better such as the Articles of Faith. These are our foundations we must build upon. 
3. As a missionary or as a person sharing the gospel . Not all successful stories will end in baptism, but they will be a success if you feel that you have done your part and your duty. 

Monday: 
Study time
Two weeks left mark!! Say what?!?! The day went pretty m uch the same as always. During personal study in the morning though I felt like I got so much out of it. The scriptures have come alive for me as a missionary. its incredible some of the insights I have gained. Hna. Ashby taughts us this day and gave us a different perspective of 1 Nephi 11 and how the spirit taught Nephi. Great stuff! The highlight of this day was our visit with maria. She is our new progressing investigator. It started before we even entered the room. The lady coordinating it all told us if after we were concerned and had questions to come talk to her. That never happens. Freaked us out a bit because Hna. Myers had taught a "Maria" with really hard questions too and we weren't sure if it was the same one. so with all this in mind we say a prayer and enter the room. It was rough. Her first 3 questions were about polygamy, the word of wisdom, and keeping the sabbath day holy. Yikes!! Tough answers in English let alone in my broken Spanish. but we  made it through alive....barely. So of course we went and talked with the lady who had warned us. She confirmed to us that Maria is in fact a non-member who is investigating the church but has received a lot of anti-mormon material. So she left us with some incredible advice, "Just find out how to love her." I am sure this won't be the last time I'll have tough investigators, in fact I'm positive its the first of many but what perfect advice! Aah! I love the Lord and the tender mercies he sends our ways! Then after our lesson and chat with the inspired lady we had class with Hno. Cuadra. He chastised and urged us to fulfill our true potential here at the MTC in the last 2 weeks. It hit home and so following his remarks Hna. Farrow and I had a detailed comp. inventory and set some personal and companionship goals. It left me buoyed up! Great day!

Tuesday: So this was a momentous day because it started with us actually walking out of our residence hall door at 7AM sharp. Ok. Ok. It might ahve been 7:02 but close enough. Super proud companion moment for me. It only took us until week 5 here at the MTC to actually do it! Class with Hno. Cuadra was amazing as usual but this day he shared with us scriptures that have helped him with the question, "Why bad things happen to good people?" I'll list them at the end of the letter. He ended with the scriptures from D&C during Liberty Jail era and said that this was the one that has kept him afloat most..."the Son descended below all things, art thou grater than He?" The Savior experienced it all so we would not have to ever experience things alone. Amazing and incomprehensible to me! He then played the song "My Kindness Shall not Depart From Thee" It was incredible!! Shout out to Madi-LOOK IT UP! You should sing it in your choir! Really all of you should look it up. it takes that same section of the D&C and puts it to music. Powerful stuff. So one of our comp. goals is to read the D&C in Spanish every day. We read Section 4 and many of you know it really well. My favorite part about it in spanish though is that unlike english where it says, "Serve him with all your heart, MIGHT, mind and strength. In spanish it reads, "Serve him with all your heart, SOUL, mind and strength. I love this!! I will be serving him with my whole soul if I'm doing it right. My whole being. It is amazing to me!! Devotional was awesome!! It was Elder Nielson of the 70 he talked on things he wished he would have known before the mission. So awesome. Funny story of the day. On the bus ride back to West Campus after the devotional there were rubber band falling from the sky. Or so it seemed. They were everywhere. So we get off the bus and find out Elder Smith had bought a pack of 150 of them at the bookstore. Ridiculous!! Great moments though when we realized Hna. Parlogean is deathly afraid of them and yet she is the one that had like 4 hit here bun and fall down the back of her blouse. The ridiculous things that happen here!!

Joseph Smith, Jr.
Wednesday: BEST DAY EBERRRT!! Seriously though it was the best day in the MTC for me by far. There was no real specific reason why though. We had 3 lessons this day which was pretty crazy. Our first in the morning with Eric we focused on the Gospel of Christ and were able to challenge him to be baptized and he accepted. Hurray! Then en la tarde we taught Benjamin. Now preface real quick. After every lesson previous to this I get done and feel like DIRT!! Seriously. Teaching him is rough for me. This day we went after preparing really hard for two days and striving to be obedient and keep our goals we had set. The difference was stark and amazing. He finally opened up to us after a lot of loving prying. His esposa y sus hijas died in a car accident and he doesn't feel like a loving or merciful God would do that. Hna. Farrow was able to share a very personal experience that was completely prompted by the spirth that seemed to reach him. We also tried to connect the Restoration to this and eternal families because everything ties back to the Restoration. As we were teaching about Joseph Smith, Hna. Farrow turned to me and asked if I would recite the first vision. I've had the first vision memorized for about 2 1/2 weeks and have used it during lessons before, but its not always if ever very smooth. During this lesson it just flowed right out of my mouth. No hesitation. No pauses. Powerfully. It was incredible to have such a firm witness of the spirits presence. It was amazing!! then that night we taught Maria again. Our "tough" real investigator. We shared our stories and showed her pictures and asked about her life. We then showed her "Gracias A El" our new lesson trademark we are currently in the process of having patented. :) She seemed much more open and receptive and I believe we helped her to realize we are real people. She knows I'm a nurse and Hna. Farrow gave up a serious boyfriend to serve. She sees this wa
sn't an easy decision for either of us but it was worth it. After that I received a BIG package in the mail with awesome notes on outside written by my family. They made me SOOO happy!! Overall this was just a perfect day!! It was beautiful outside, and the perfect climate but it was also filled with the spirit that comes from obedience and striving to be better! Muy increíble! 

Thursday: Another day in the neighborhood called West Campus. My entire journal entry about his day is in regards to Maria. She means a lot to me! We were a bit stuck after our last lesson with where to go in our teaching. We still didn't feel like we knew what she wanted from us and how we could truly hlepp her. So Heavenly Father blessed us with Hna. Ashby for class that day. The Lord set the stage. She asked about my nursing and needed advice for her life and we just got talking and learned so much about her. It was amazing. We didn't share a gospel message but left feeling so full of the spirit and happy she had opened up and we had found how to love her. Such a testament and witness that the Lord knows his servants and knows where they are needed. My being an nurse opened a VERY closed door into her life. So awesome!!

Hooray!
They're all heading to Argentina!
Elder checking the mail for travel plans
Friday: Oh my goodness!! Today was the day! The day of all days!! Flight plans baby!! But first...we taught Eric this day about Castidad aka Chastity. I was really worried about this lesson and not just because it is a little awkward to teach it to your 22 year old teacher. For a lot of different reasons but as we ended the lessons and I bore my testimony of the atonement and how it can always make you clean again. I had a very strong personal witness that it was true and that it had worked for me. Heavenly Father is good and his plan is perfecto!!! Then we had class with Hna. Ashby again b/c Hno. Cuadra is out of town for a funeral. Fun fact. his wife is a softball coach at MV with Teresa Barney. her name is Brindy. Small world right?!? Anywho...Hna. Ashby was our teacher and helped us again with organizing our thoughts about Maria. She also taught us about the importance of the Spirit in your lesson and said something profound I had never thought of before. She said that as you teach, each companion should have equal time talking but that we also should always have a THIRD companion in our lessons. It is the spirit and he needs just as much of our equal time. During this time we suddenly heard shouts and pounding footsteps up the stairs to our classroom Hna. Myers came bursting in mid Hna. Ashby's spiritual thought. She realized what was up and quickly left but she was holding some awesome green flight plan paper in her hand. We were freaking out!! Hna. Ashby was understanding and finished up and we went running down to find our our future! Drum roll please....... I'm going to Posadas, Argentina!! I leave Oct 20th at 6AM from the MTC. Our flight doesn't leave until 11 AM, then a 5 hour layover in Atlanta and then we arrive in Buenos Aires at 8:20AM on Tuesday. The best part is our entire district is on the same flight!! So I don't have to say goodbye to all my friends until Buenos Aires!! The excitement was unreal and I feel so blessed to have received them. I cannot believe I only have 9 days left in the MTC. The time has flown by!! It is insane! So we had our last lesson with Maria this night and we focused on prayer and that she was a daughter of God. It went well! I'm going to miss teaching her but I was so grateful for the opportunity we had to have her. It was amazing and so real!!

"Miniature column"
Fun fact of today. We completed our MTC bucket list by jumping over a miniature column par core status. SO FUN. I felt amazing. Overall the week was incredible. My testimony grew, my love for my Savior increased, and my desire to serve and love others is greater!! I'd call that a success.  

Another fun fact. If you want to read some super sweet undercover agent/FBI status scriptures. Read Helaman 2. It is awesome!!!

Love you all so very much and thank you for your support and love for me. Now go out and share your love for God by sharing his message in whatever what you can!!

Te Amo,

Hermana Albach 

Scriptures I Said I'd Put Here: 
Psalm 30:5
Psalm 34:17-19
Jeremiah 8:22
Isaiah 25:8
Matthew 11:28-30
Matthew 26:39
John 14:27
John 16:33
Phillipians 4:7-13
Alma 7:11-12
Ether 12:4
D&C 58:2-4
D&C 68:6
D&C 98:12
D&C 121:1-2
D&C 122:7-8
Isaiah 54:10

Fourth Week in Paradise...or in a Monsoon!


October 4, 2014


Well the time has come again for all y'all to read and partake of this wonderous thing entitled "My Week in an Email." This week was pretty crazy but was awesome. I cannot believe that it has already been three and half  weeks. I get my flight plans this next Friday. Time flies when you are having fun...or just learning a different language of how to teach by the spirit and Spanish. So here we go with the the play by play or as I have entitled it the day by day.

Saturday 2nd Half: After I finished emailing for my allotted hour we had about 40 minutes left before our P-day was over. So I immediately wrote my family all the funny stories I couldn't fit in last email. If you want to know them..let my family know and they can post them on the blog...or facebook...or whatever the kids are using these days. :) After Hermana Myers finished with her time we decided we were going to brave the rain and head on down to Great Harvest for some delicious food. The only problem was braving the rain. I was not too worried because I was prepared with a Russian babushka rain jacket of epic proportions. Literally. It was huge but it kept the rain off of me and that is all I cared about. We decided to embark on this journey with courage in our hearts and swift movements. At first we thought we would just speed walk...soon we were running down the sidewalk. Our duty to always have quiet dignity kind of changed for the three minutes it took us to run down the street, but it was so worth it. It had been kind of a funky p day but after we had some time with delicious fresh made food all was made well. We then headed back for class and a great rest of the evening.

Sunday-
Well at 6PM Saturday night our fast had begun and I was super grateful for this opportunity because I had a couple of things that I had been really wanting to fast for. One of these was our dog Finn who had been potentially hit by a car and was facing potential orthopedic surgery. I was really worried about this and the impact it had on my family. I also fasted for some other things as well. Throughout the day I was able to remember the purpose for my fast and feel that much more in tune with the spirit. It was the best Sunday here by far. I had meetings all day. Seriously all day. Life of a STL I guess, but they were such a blessing to keep my focus outward and not on myself. That night we had the devotional fireside and it was really good. They sang an arrangement of "O My Father/Joseph Smiths First Prayer" to the tune of "Homeward Bound." It was great the first time but then the speaker had them sing three more times during his talk. The third time he had us sing along quietly and the spirit that I felt was indescribable. The line, "there's a voice that whispers your a stranger here, and I knew that I had wondered from a more exalted sphere" hit me so hard. I am a divine daughter of God that lived before this time and loved my Father in Heaven. My goal and purpose in this life is to come unto my Savior and find a way back home to my Father in Heaven. It was powerful. This is true for all of us. Needless to say that fireside was powerful. Then we had Sunday night movie night where we watched Legacy which was even better than the Testaments because it is most definitely a love story. Great memories of watching it with my sisters all growing up as I watched it. Felt like a little piece of home. 

Monday-
We taught three lessons this day. One to our new progressing investigator Maribel who is the sweetest and funniest lady I have ever met. One to Eric (Hermano Porter) and one to Benjamin (Hermano Cuadra). They were all challenging in different ways but none more challenging than Benjamin, but we didn't expect anything different. We learn so much everytime we teach him. Gym time was the greatest thing ever this day. We played 3x3 basketball with the boys in our district. Man I have missed playing and some of the boys are surprisingly good. The Hermanas are not too shabby as well. Hermana Parlogean the character that always makes me laugh harder than anybody else is quite the baller. Have a couple of bruises from her. I received a package from Lauryn Jensen this day and it was sooooo stinkin' cute. With the most amazing letter. Shout out to my girl! Thank you! This day was a very humbling day in which I realized when I struggle most here it is because I am focused completely inward and on myself. Such an important realiz
ation for me. 

Tuesday-
Hermanas at the Provo Temple
Well everybody. I have a confession to make. I am a hardened criminal. Its true. I took my second ride in a police car this week up to campus. Apparently they just can't get me under control. :) Haha it only took me going on a mission to find my inner criminal. Nah...Hermana Myers had to go and redo here fingerprints because apparently they didn't clear with the FBI. Yucky!! But hopefully it will all work out for her. It was my favorite policeman again and he even showed the other Hna's the phaser. I felt so knowledgeable because I already knew about the wig wag lights and all being the hardened criminal I am. Lunch this day was hilarious. Somehow bear maulings came up and all Hna. Farrow could talk about was how a bear would "rip your face right off". That is obviously the first thing that happens. Haha. I guess it isn't that funny but she just kept repeating it in different situations and told us that she has looked up pictures of bear maulings. We saw a side of her that we never have before. :) Oh....wow this day was epic. I received a package from the Madre and we went back to our residence hall before leaving for the Tuesday night devotional and so I decided to open my package. It had nerf guns. Three to be exact. One for each of us. I decided to test one out and so I called to Hna. Farrow (poor girl) and she came out and I shot right at her. She matrixed my shot but it then began what we have deemed the "great and almost holy war" in which every Hna was for herself. Then the Hna's next door knocked on our door so we united in that moment to attack them. It was seriously so fun and brought some needed laughs to the day. Thanks mamacita!! We also tried out the alien slingers too. Not as good as the nerf guns but close. They pack a serious punch. 

Wednesday-
Well by this point of the week it was still freezing and I decided to bust out the black tights this day. It was so cold. We just so happened to be hosting the new missionaries again this Wednesday which was a blast but seriously so cold. Our teacher brought us doughnuts because we beat him at a game that not many of his districts have beat him at. Our districts got a ton closer as we hosted because we had to wait forever for the newbies to arrive. We talked, played a version of paper, rock, scissors in spanish. We just had some good gospel fun. That night my teacher Hno. Cuadra made me cry yet again. He is incredible. We had a man doing language assessments and all the Hna's in our district didn't want to have to go that night so he brought us all in to talk with him and keep us safe from the man. Now that is love. During this time his leg began to give out. He has cancer in his knee and just found out that it is back and  not good. He could hardly walk. It hit all of us so strong how blessed we were to have him as a teacher and not only that but to blessed with his love and dedication. The question why do bad things happen to good people hit me in a completely different and real way. I didn't get why such an incredible man had to suffer so much in his life, as I was thinking this the next thought hit me even stronger. The Lord knows us personally. He knows what we can handle. He knows what will bring us closer to him. He knows the extent of what we can truly and deeply handle. He knows us and because of this he knows exactly how to try our faith and keep us ever close to him. What a strength to me and blessing to know that he will try me, but I can always make it through with his help. 

Thursday-
Today was such a good day. We were able to teach Eric again and man it was kind of a crazy experience. As we were teaching him, we had planned on teaching him the plan of salvation but as we showed him Gracias A El (Because of Him) to start the lesson off, afterwards we just got talking and discussing things and it turned to a lesson on repentance. I felt this feeling come over me that I never have before and I was able to ask questions in my broken spanish and truly just follow what he needed. It was amazing and such a cool experience. We also were able to teach Maribel and we challenged her to baptism and she accepted. It was awesome. Such a strong spirit there as well. I never feel better or more tried than when we are teaching others. The strongest I ever feel the spirit is when I am bearing testimony of my Savior and this gospel. The reaffirmation every time I bear my testimony is incredible. It is never less true. If anything it becomes stronger and more powerful everytime. 

Friday-
Yesterday was jam packed. We did our laundry that morning because we don't really have a P-day today because of conference. We worked out hard before the long no working out weekend which was good. I love feeling like I am actually doing something besides sitting and more sitting. We had another hard lesson with Benjamin, but we are getting so much better at many aspects of our lessons with him such as asking questions, door approach, and teaching by the spirit. I learned from this lesson though that I just need to be more bold. I need to not waste 18 months of my mission being scared or trying to be careful and not asking the hard and bold questions. Christ never beat around the bush. He asked his questions lovingly but outright. As a literal representative of him I must do the same. After the lesson though I just felt awful so I do what every good missionary does. I cried. Just kidding I turned to my scriptures. After getting nothing for a while I finally turned to a favorite passage of mine. It is in Matthew 6. It was incredible. It hit me so hard that I have nothing to worry about if I have enough and sufficient faith in my father in Heaven. You should all read it sometimes. It definitely puts perspective on things in my life. I finally had my language assessment with the man. His name is actually Gil. He was so nice and it was great constructive criticism that gave me ways to improve and be a better speaker. Oh...and just a moment of bragging. I may or may not have beat all the Hermana's in my district at arm wrestling. They then had me arm wrestle Elder Ah Quin....i beat him. Easy. Ok, not even, he is like a personal trainer. He killed me, but I almost beat him... sort of. :) 

Anyway. That is my week. I think the greatest and most important lesson learned for me was to turn outward always. To look for the good and to love more fully my investigators, my district, my zone, my teacher, my companions. When you are worried about others, things in your own life seems to just fall into place. I am so grateful for that knowledge. I hope you all enjoy conference and truly search to find answers because I know you will. Love you all and talk to you in another week!! 
Remember who you are, where you came from, and who you truly represent! 
Si se puede!!

Hermana Albach

Semana Tres - Halfway...say what?!?!?!?

Hermana Farrow and Myers
September 27, 2014

Here I am again. It seems like just seven days ago that I was writing you a similar email. Oh wait...I was. :) I crack myself up. Actually in all reality this last week has flown by, it seriously almost feels like yesterday was P-day and I was lucky and had two in a row. People are not lying when they say the days are LONG, super LONG even but the weeks fly by faster than you know it. This week was jam packed so hold onto your seats and get ready for a sweet fly by of all that happened. 

Second half of Saturday after I emailed y'all we headed on down to Brigham's Landing for some delicious Burger Supreme burgers and fries. Not the healthiest choice in town but when it hasn't been reheated and put on a plate, anything is great! (Ok. Ok.) The food is not that bad I guess. But a change of scenery and food was great. We were also able to stop by Great Harvest and get some cinnamon rolls to share with Hno. Cuadra because they are his favorite. (Watch for the cinnamon rolls to come into play later on.)  So that night we had class with Hno. Porter who I found out knows all of the guys soccer team that graduated the year I did. He is friends with them. Can you say weird? Trippy? Or crazy weird? Well it is all three. For example he is friends with Michael Lacerda, Jared Bodine, Matt Gowans, Brayden Mollner(he knows who Skylar is), etc. His name is Caleb Porter, feel free to facebook stalk my teacher if you would like. Also Hno. Cuadra's first name is Ariel if you would like to see the faces of the men that I spend most of my time here in the MTC learning from or teaching as they are our fake investigators. Well anyway, that night he had us play 20 questions where we picked anything church-related and the person had to come in and figure it out. After we had all gone he went. He asked the most specific, thought provoking questions that easily helped him to figure it out. It was a clear object lesson about how good questions promote the spirit and provoke answers that allow you to see into your investigators lives more clearly. Great lesson and day overall.

Sunday- Man alive! What a busy day! We had everything earlier this day due to the Ogden Temple rededication we were able to go up to main campus and watch. It was so awesome and so power packed. I loved Elder Bednar's and President Monson's talk. So great. Then I had meetings for the rest of the day. Literally no joke. It was insane. That night we had the devotional by Gordon Brown, a former MTC president. It was exactly what I needed to hear. So grateful for those tender mercies the Lord is always willing to shower us with. Then we went and were able to watch The Testaments in a huge room of missionaries. Funniest experience ever. There are approximately three kissing scenes in that movie. Want to know how I know that after seven days? Because all the missionaries FREAKED out whenever one happened. So funny. I just laughed and laughed. I also had a great one liner. It was the most action I was going to see for the next 18 months. :) It was weird to be able to watch a movie, but fun at the same time. 

Monday- We were with Hna. Story this day because the rest of the old districts flew out and she didn't fly out until Wednesday. She is the sweetest and I was so glad for the time I had to get to know her better. Fast forward to gym time. Most awkward and funny story yet here in my time at the MTC. So I am using the elliptical and this new chinese elder comes and starts using the machine next to me. He starts talking to me and then suddenly is saying that he and his companion have a bet. I asked what it was and he said that I was really pretty and then proceeded to ask if I had a boyfriend. Yikes. I was honest and said no but wish I would have said yes. Hahaha. I now understand that no flirting is not only to protect you from doing something inappropriate but to also help the sisters feel safe, not awkward, and weird about any interaction. The best part was he was trying to say it all in spanish and it was awful and he was basically yelling it. Great moment in my day...haha. Made me laugh for most of it. We were able to teach Benjamin, one of our two new investigators. It was so hard. We had to do a door approach and were not expecting it and because the other companionship of elders went first we had a bit of time to think fast and come up with something. We utilized the cinnamon rolls in our door approach and almost got him to let us in with just those. We finally got in but it didn't turn out so great. Dang it! Oh well, we teach him this Monday. 

Tuesday- 
We taught our other investigator Eric this day and it went really well. We both felt super good about it. M. Russell Ballard was the devotional speaker and he was phenomenal. I will email more about what he said next week. Just remind me to because it was powerful. "Grandpa's advice" he called it to future missionaries. We had our first TRC lesson with members. It was rough. We didn't know until 15 minutes before. Yikes. Don't let me forget to share our branch presidency insights as well. 

Wednesday- Official 2 Week Mark
We finally played bball as a district and the hermanas played as well. So much fun!!! We were able to be the hosts for the new missionaries here at west campus. We were able to meet all of our new districts and hermanas. They are super sweet!! 

Thursday-
This was the day of all days. I had to go to the travel office for issues because my mission is now requiring two FBI clearance checks so I rode up with the other elders going to my mission to BYU to get more fingerprints. We got to ride in a cop car though! It was awesome. He told me what all the buttons for the lights meant. The wig wag are the lights that go back and forth and then he showed us what the phaser sounded like and scared all the missionaries entering west campus. Hilarious!!! I will tell you the acne cream story next week! Remind me so funny! 

Friday-
Rough day. Rough lesson but awesome outcome. We were able to write ourselves a letter to read when we get off our mission and it gave me a lot of perspective and was so awesome for me to read. Then I was able to be made aware that the fruit spoken of in 1 Nephi 8 & 11 is actually the atonement of Christ. Hno. Cuadra is amazing! Seriously awesome!! 

Saturday- Rain. Rain. Rain!

Well I am out of time and I feel bad that I didn't get as much in as I wanted to but write me and remind me for next week because the acne cream story is seriously funny! I love this gospel here and have been able to see my Spanish improving so much. It is all through the spirit. As we as a companionship have been more obedient we have been blessed more. One thing the 1st counselor in our branch presidency told us is that we have so many more rules as a missionary because through obedience the Lord is able to bless us. So why would he not give us as many rules as possible so we could have so many more opportunities to be obedient and receive that many more blessings. I love you all. The church is true. Our Savior is real and through him we can truly find joy and happiness. He is our all, and he is the reason I am serving a mission. Bring others unto him. Through your example, love, and faith. There is no greater feeling in the world. 
Read Ether 12. Powerful stuff. 

Remember Him!!

Hermana Albach 

Week 2 -- Big Dawg Time

September 20, 2014

Hey everybody!! Here I am again. It is already my second Saturday in the mission field. Crazy! It is also again one of the most stressful days of the week. I love the difference of it all but man is writing everybody in the allotted time a hurdle to jump. But don't you worry your little heads. I am doing quite well at it. Probably because my typing skills are so proficient. Maybe even Olympic level. :) 

Guess I should start where I left off. Saturday afternoon was great. We were able to teach Raul again and the spirit was so strong. I left the lesson almost crying because it just felt so right. Then the next day was Sunday which was exciting! We had sacrament in the pool house at Raintree. How it works is everyone prepares a talk in Spanish on a certain subject given out before and then the branch presidency calls up two random people from the audience to give theirs. Scary! But don't worry it wasn't me. Phew!! Then we have talks from a member of the branch presidency and his wife in English. This last Sunday we had a musical number called "Come Unto Christ." I believe it is the youth theme for the year. It was so amazing. I was definitely leaking water from my eyes. Whoops. Then we headed to Relief Society which consists of watching Music and the Spoken word and then having a live broadcast from main campus with a speaker for our lesson. It is pretty cool. Then we went back for personal study time in which I was pulled out to talk with the Branch presidency. Uh-oh!! He extended the offer and invitation for me to be the new Sister Training Leader once this current STL leaves...this upcoming Monday actually. So I said 'yes' of course and they said they would announce it this next Sunday which is tomorrow. Crazy!! So humbled. Yes, I may be the oldest of the group of young ones but I am definitely not very good at Spanish and feel quite humbled that after only a little less than a week he called me to be the leader. I am excited for the opportunity though. Anyways, that night we had a devotional and Tad R. Callister was our speaker. He gave a great talk on the plan of salvation. Then we watched the recording of Elder Bednar's talk entitled Character of Christ. That movie changed my life. It is was incredible. It talked all about turning outward and striving to follow our Savior by never giving into the natural man and turning in. It was exactly what I needed because Sunday was a rough day for me, but after that talk I knew that a mission and turning outward to serve my Savior was exactly what I needed to do!! He will help me every step of the way...because that is what he does. He always turns outward towards us and those in need! Oh and random fact. Sunday is also rough because the cafeteria people think it is ok to offer all the best foods at exactly the same time for the starving hermanas and elders. Needless to say I was NOT hungry at dinner.
Ok, onto Monday-
There wasn't too much craziness or difference in Monday. We were able to watch as our entire district of boys gave a sick Elder a blessing. It was an awesome experience to watch them figure out how it works and then to see their faith. Loved that. Then I was bombarded again but Hermano Cuadra who is muy increible. He seriously sees the gospel in a way that I never have. I always come out of his class learning more than I ever thought I could. He again taught about the Savior which seems to be the theme for this week. He instructed us to Remember Him!! The Savior was deserted at every point of his journey. By his friends falling asleep in the garden, by Judas Iscariot betraying him for money, by even his Father in Heaven at one point, but through all of this he remembered US. He remembered his true purpose which was US!! He again always turns outward. He challenged us to remember our Savior and remember that we are about his work. We are HIS representatives, so we must therefore remember him and follow his example. My favorite line is this, " Salvation is NOT a cheap experience. How can I truly know my Savior if I never walk the path he walked to some tiny degree?" Missionary work requires something of our souls and in turn gives us a relationship with our Savior that is worth more than gold! Again leaking from my eyes occurred. I should probably check the plumbing on those bad boys! :)

Tuesday- I saw Jordan Byers this day and, blast it all, he would only speak Spanish to me which was a little rough but I made it through. :) It was good for me. I also saw Donovan in the mail room which was a pleasant surprise and he gave me his work schedule. I am glad he had his wedding ring on because I am sure the elders that walked in right as this was occurring might have thought it was something else entirely. Whoops! I also memorized the baptismal challenge this day which helped me out just the next day. Back to our investigator Raul. We had been teaching him but our last lesson on Monday fell a bit flat. We felt that we needed to get to know him better and strive to understand what he needed. So we planned to just ask questions, show a video, and follow up with our commitments we had given him. Pause. I'll explain more later. So Tuesday night is the devotional as well and I was in the choir singing Be Still My Soul. We had heard whispers that it was one of the big guys, namely one of the twelve. But that rumors circulates a lot, except this time it wasn't a rumor. Elder Richard G. Scott was our devotional speaker and man was it powerful. He spoke on prayer and the power of it. He spoke of the importance of gratitude in our prayers and for the ability to pray. It is a gift we must not take lightly. Our Heavenly Father loves to hear our voices and waits anxiously for it. Just as you all await anxiously this epistle I write every week. Hahaha. I crack myself up! Needless to say Tuesday was an awesome night, especially because we almost overflowed our toilet while the Branch Presidents wife was there. Yikes. We got a picture. No worries, and my plunging skills came in quite handy! :) 

Wednesday-
Today was the day! We taught Raul. We prayed. Prepared some more and went for it. We went in and showed Raul a mormon message and immediately after I felt prompted to ask how he felt about it. (Not planned.) We then continued on and I asked if he believed in Jesus Christ and the book of mormon. He said yes. I felt so strongly to extend the baptismal challenge to him but kept chickening out, but my companion kept asking other questions that were good so it was ok. Finally I could not take it anymore and I looked him in the eye and was able to extend the baptismal challenge from memory, never breaking eye contact. It was incredible. The spirit was SO strong. I felt so deeply the power of this challenge because of the change it helps to bring in others lives. He paused and thought and then agreed to be baptized. I was so excited, even though in the back of my mind I knew it was fake. (He wears garments.) Even with that knowledge though, the feeling of the spirit was not diminished. We continued on with our lesson and it was great!! We committed him for October 18th. Hurrah!! Today I also received my gargantuan package!! Thanks Mom!! You are the absolute best! Seriously!! Love you. It was just what I needed. So much Spanish food! Haha. My roommates loved the cookies too! My whole district and teacher loved the Dora fruit snacks. So thank you! Oh reason #58694874 that Hermano Cuadra is the best teacher ever. He just happens to have taught none other than David Archuleta when he was in the MTC. They are buddies and he hangs out with him all the time. He showed us a picture but refused to bring him to class. Dang it, but still he is pretty awesome! Wednesday night I was able to go with the current STL to talk with the new hermanas in a zone that has never had hermanas. They were so cute and that orange dot stood out for miles. No wonder everyone was so nice to me my first day!! :) It was good to see that being a STL is alot like being an EFY counselor. You just have to love them and be there for them. I think I can do it!

Thursday-
Man God is good! I gained an even stronger testimony of the Lord's goodness and knowledge of me personally. He truly put me with a companion that was an answer to a prayer that was vital to me. She was the answer in a way I never thought possible. Our Heavenly Father knows us. He knows everything about us and he knows how to put people and experiences in our lives to get us from point A to point B with the knowledge that he is there. I am so grateful for that!! We started to memorize the first vision in spanish. A bit rough but we have two or three lines down so far. I have found it to be such a blessing my ability to memorize from years of schooling and practice. The Lord prepares his servants to serve him well and magnify their strengths and I have felt mine being magnified.  Oh next is the shocking news. Raul is not Raul!!!!! Dun. Dun. DUNNNNNNN!!! He is actually Hermano Porter our other teacher! Crazy. He is awesome though! The weird thing for me is that we are the same age and he graduated from Timpanogas High School in 2010. Kind of a weird thing to have myself reminded I am a lot closer in age to my teachers then to the people in my district. 

Friday- Almost done. I'm sorry! :P We played volleyball this day for gym rather than just working out and it was SO FUN. We also threw (like a softball) on Tuesday or something and that was amazing!! Seriously though. Felt so good. Good thing Hna. Farrow played softball for BYU-Hawaii!! The boys in the district below us that our other companion is a part of call me Mama Albach. I guess it was inevitable. A hermana in our district flashed everyone when she jumped up and her maxi flew up almost over her head. Probably almost died laughing. Poor thing. She is just the best though. Totally just went with it. Found out an Elder in my district was at Nauvoo last year when I was a counselor and had my friends Kim, Chanelle, and Nic as their counselors! Crazy!! Love it! Lastly, we studied why bad things happen to good people and my answer to that is found in D&C 122. I challenge you all to read it! Are we greater than he? He did everyting he could for us and all he asks in return is for us to humble ourselves and come unto him!!! 

I love you all and love all the letters, emails, packages that you send. Keep it up, but most importantly keep your relationship with your Father in Heaven and Savior growing and developing because that is what is most important!!

Te amo todos,

Hermana Kate Albach




Katers at Work!

September 2014
Hermana Albach and her district


Silly Sisters 


 Hermanas Farrow, Myers and Albach


All the Hermanas 

Kaitlyn's First Letter

September 13, 2014
Hola Mi Familia y Mi Amigos!

Oh my goodness. This is definitely the most surreal thing ever. I feel like I have been reading these types of emails for a long time and now I am finally the Hermana that is writing one. CARAZY!! Well to start off, this week was so AWESOME! Insane and long and tough and humbling and insightful and fun but most of all awesome. My grammar is not that great in English or in Spanish any more. I am starting to speak a whole lot of spanglish. But you probably want to know some basics first eh? 
Day #1 
My first day was insane. I left you all at the curb and walked around into one building where I received an envelope with my tag and meal card/key to everything I could ever need. #can'tloseit #won'tloseit Then I moved onto another building where they handed me those "8-10" really 20 pounds of books and language study materials. I thought I was strong and then I had to lug that one armed to the shuttle outside and my arm was dead. Sad day. After lugging the 20 pounds of books I boarded the shuttle and said goodbye to my sweet host. Then I was ripping and roaring and waiting for a good five minutes to head down to Wyview where I was greeted by an even cuter host. She was so cute. She took me to my building and lugged all my luggage and I mean ALL the HEAVY stuff up the three flights to the top left apartment. Needless to say I was super impressed by her. She was like a twig, I seriously don't know how she did it. Then after I put my luggage in my room I was taken back to where we were dropped off. Right by the Wyview Chapel and was escorted by a group of host Elders and new Elders to my classroom. Best part of that adventure is when the Host Elders turned to the new Elders and said that speaking with an Hermana was a sin and could get them sent home. It was super funny because I was the ONLY Hermana in the group being escorted to a class at that point. #classy I got to the classroom and was only spoken to in Spanish and told to take an assessment in the classroom downstairs in Spanish, where I really only watched a 20 minute video about gym time where half of the rules didn't apply to the West campus and what is available here. Then we headed back up and were again spoken too in Spanish and were asked to practice phrases on the board which were things like Cual es tu nombre? Mi nombre es....? Simple. Or so I thought. They actually weren't too bad. Most of them I understood from jr. high/high school spanish. Then more and more elders and hermana's trickled in. I was able to meet mi first companera Hermana Farrow. She is adorable and played softball at BYU-Hawaii. She is from San Diego, California and is going to the Nuequen(palandrome #awesome) Argentina. I knew I was in a trio companionship because of the envelope that said so but the other companera never showed. I asked Hermana Farrow about it and she said that she was in the intermediate spanish class that met right below us. Her name is Hermana Myers and she is awesome as well. They are both 19 and super sweet and actually quite mature. I don't feel like I am babysitting at all, partially because they both know better spanish than I do. Eeek...that is ok I have learned very quickly not to compare where I am at and how I am progressing to anyone else in the field except for my past self. It is not helpful or productive, but instead very destructive. Though it is tempting at times to do so. We then went to a meeting with the MTC president which was awesome. They had changed the words to "Will Bring the World His Truth" it read, "Daily we'll learn for NOW we are called to preach the gospel to all the world. We are NOW the Lord's missionaries." So powerful. Perfect for me. We then headed to dinner which was not that bad but definitely not up to main campus cafeteria as I found out today. Way sub par but I will take the hit for the accommodations ie bathroom shared with three rather than 6-8, only three in two rooms rather than 6 in one etc. The west campus also seems to have more open space and freedom it feels like. After dinner we headed over for People and our Purpose part one which seriously was exactly what I needed the first night. We went and were able to teach as a group and talk with three different investigators. It was so powerful and brought the "real"ness of this work to the forefront of my mind! I am so excited to teach and preach others. This gospel is real. After that we returned and met our zone and learned some of the ropes. Our zones favorite himno to sing is 164 in the himnos. Look it up. Pretty funny. Especially in Spanish. The tender mercy of my first day was as we were meeting our zone and they were wrapping up with spiritual videos I had the thought of how nice it would be to see, "Because of Him". I just love that Mormon video. Lo and behold one of our zone leaders Elder George(haha funny I know) said that we would be ending with that video. Big tender mercy #1 of the week!! That night we got back and tried to unpack a little bit and then got to bed late because of it but not as late as others. 6:30 comes early, but hasn't been as hard as I thought it would be. 
Day #2
 The second day was just as crazy and busy. Even more so because I had to go up to main campus with Hermana Parlogean because we got the dreaded pink slips for the immunization. Ended up needing a flu shot. Dumb. Who knew you could get flu shots at the Walgreens outside of flu season. Lame. We had our first gym time in the giant marshmallows of west campus. We ran a bit and watched all the elders play basketball. #jealous Then we discovered the diamond in the ruff of West Campus called: SACK LUNCHES. You go in a side door of the trailer and can pick four items and then take them back to your resident hall and eat it all and have about an hour or so until your next class. It is the life. We were all able to shower as well. Super nice! Lots of showering and changing clothes. More than I expected. A lot more freedom and less direction than I thought as well. We met our permanent teacher Maestro Cuadro this day. He is amazing. They are not kidding when they say you will LOVE your teacher. He is so funny and always manages to make the four hours of class time at once fly by. We were introduced to our first investigator through email. His name is Raul Soto and he is from Mexico and has a cousin that introduced him to the gospel. We then had to prepare a lesson and were instructed on the cycle of personal study, companionship study, language study, and how it should work. It was awesome. Hermana Farrow and I got to work. After we had planned it out and translated some of the lesson into espanol we then went and emailed him. I logged onto mine and already saw so many emails. Took mucho self control to not open them right then and there. Thank you for all the love! It is appreciated more than you could ever know. It is weird. It is not like I need it, it just makes the day better and gives you added vigor and something to look forward to at night. It is our zone rule to not open letters until we get back to our resident halls at 9:30. Three tender mercies of the day straight from my journal. They all came from my teachers. Told you he is amazing. First he helped us to realize how similar we are to our Savior and his experience in Gethsemane. The Savior was scared, he turned to his friends but they were asleep. He walked until he fell on his face because of the pain and then he turned to God. If the Savior can do scary things and feel weak, then am I any greater. We have more in common as missionaries with the Savior than I ever could have imagined. Second we are should to shoulder with Christ. He knows us! He knows how hard it is to preach and to have a mission and to be on one. He knows and will aid me and all the other missionaries and you as you open your mouths and share what you know to be true. Third, I am a light. I am a child of God and that means that I can not afford to do things that bring me down. I must be better and stand taller and hold myself to a higher level of obedience. Simply perfect. That night as we met with the Branch Presidency for four hours as they interviewed us. It was good. Saw Jake Titensor at the desk. Apparently he works at the MTC. 
Day #3
The days never get any crazier. Seriously just more and more crazy. We taught our first investigator this day. We taught him at 8:30 in espanol. MUY MUY MUY SCARY!! But it went alright and I definitely felt the spirit. We then were able to review our lesson and improve. A question we hadn't prepared for was Why Joseph Smith? Why did God pick him? It was an interesting question to answer in english let alone try to in espanol. We tried our best but I plan on following up and answering that question better tonight in our second lesson. I believe that it is because obviously foreordination, but simply put it is because our Heavenly Father (Padre Celestial) KNOWS us. He has a plan. He knows what we can handle and he knows our potential perfectly. He chose Joseph Smith because of who he was and could become and who his family was. It is good to know that whatever happens in my life as long as I trust my Father in Heaven he will ensure that I am reaching my true and real potential. We then had gym again with the same GOLD plan of sack lunch then headed up to main campus so that I could pay for that blasted(did I say blasted I meant blessed ;)) flu shot. It was fun to see main campus again and go to the book store where I bought Maestro Cuadro his favorite candy. Good thing I did because he chastised us later for planning our lesson on the floor. Whoopsie! Lesson learned. I finally got all my letters this day and it was AWESOME! Looked for Donovan in the mail room but they said he didn't show up for his shift. Next time I guess. I felt so special. Keep em coming! I love them. I also got my first package. Uncle Mike and Aunt Beps...YOU WIN!! Big time. Those cookies are increible(spanish for incredible and my teacher says it all the time and I love the sound of it when he says it) and seriously SOOOO delicious!! Class with Hno. Cuadro from 4:30-8:30 was simply put indescribable. I learned so much about his life and his struggles and the miracles that he has seen. I will disclose more throughout the coming weeks, but he managed to baffle me again with the power of his message. He told us that we are here in the CCM(MTC) to learn two languages. The first and most important is how to listen and teach by the language of the spirit! Without that we are nothing. Second, we are here to learn spanish. Loved the different view point on this. The second thing I learned was that a mission is not a sacrifice it is an offering to our Lord to show him our love for this gospel and for our brothers and sisters. Loved that viewpoint. We actually got to bed on time this day. 
Day #4 (AKA TODAY) (AKA MY P-DAY)!
We started out this day by being at a service project at Raintree at 6:15 meaning we had to wake up at 5:50. Yikes. It was worth it. We just help to clean all the classrooms and buildings her at Raintree. Nice to know our class will be cleaned everyday. We then got sack breakfast and hurried and got ready for the temple. We made it to the 8:40 session. Awesome. Loved it! Noticed a lot of new and different things. Then we headed to main campus to print off our emails and eat lunch. The cafeteria there is way better with such great options. We then headed back and headed over to Raintree to email. HURRAY! Oh Mom and Dad, I saw Jodi Dahl at the temple. She stopped me at the temple and told me to tell you hi. I also saw Jennifer Layton. She is so sweet! I took a ton of pictures dont you worry. But if you would set up the dropbox so that I can empty them in next Satruday and the sooner I get those memory cards for the camera the better. My camera is already full. Yikes!! It is so awesome here. I love this gospel. I love the work. I love my companions. I love our purpose as missionaries. I love you all! Thank you for your love, support, and prayers. 
I would like to end by typing my purpose as a missionary in spanish to you. I have been memorizing it the last two days. Invitar a la personas a venir a Cristo al ayudarle a que reciben evangelio restaurada mediante la fe en JesuCristo y su Expiciacion, el arrepentimiento, el bautismo, la recepcion del don del Espiritu Santos y el preseverar hasta el fin. 
This is what it is all about! Love you and hope to hear from you all next Saturday!!

Remember who you are, what you stand for, and who you ultimately represent!!
P.S. I can pray and bear my testimony in Spanish now. Pretty cool eh? Simple but awesome!!

Love you all, 
Hermana Albach