Tuesday, May 28, 2013

May 27, 2013 Last P-Day in MTC the day before leaving May 28th to Cleveland, Ohio

Subject: Week 2 MTC!

Friends and Family!!
This week has absolutely flown by! I am honestly not sure where the 
time went, but here I am on Monday May 27th heading out to Cleveland 
tomorrow morning at 4am! (By the way- for those who asked. 6:30 am 
breakfast means that we get up at 5:45. :) ) This experience in the MTC 
has been amazing and so much fun. I have made so many new friendships 
that I'm sure will last a lifetime, even though it has only been two 
weeks. Siser Hawkins and I have taught nine lessons together now. Some 
have been better than others... but we are getting better! We have one 
last lesson to teach tonight- we're really excited! I honestly cannot 
remember everything that has happened this week- it has been a blur. 
One thing that I really enjoyed this week was in-field orientation on 
Thursday. It made me so excited to go to Ohio tomorrow! I'm not sure if 
I said this before, but everyone in my district is going to Cleveland, 
which is awesome. (Side note: one thing that our district does is 
called "Trip-D" aka "Daily District Discussion" right before we go back 
to our residence halls at night. Basically we share our favorite 
experiences/best jokes from throughout the day. When people say that 
your district becomes like your family: they don't lie. Other side 
note: Elders and Sisters can't high-five. So instead we 
enthusiastically handshake. That is what Elder Anderson and I are doing 
in the attached picure.)
   Last night we went to a devotional by Steven B. Allen from the 
director of the missionary department. I have never felt the spirit so 
strong in my life! He truly was an inspired man. We listened to and 
then sang "Come, Come, Ye Saints" by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. I 
would encourage you all to look it up on youtube. It is a very amazing 
and spiritual song. After the devotional, we watched a rebroadcast of 
Sister Frances Monson's funeral. It was the most beautiful funeral that 
I have ever "been to." It is sad to see her go, the world really has 
lost an amazing woman, but at the same time it is so great to know that 
she is in a better place and that her family will be able to see her 
again. After that last night, we had one last Trip-D in the grass 
outside with cinnamon rolls- bittersweet but very exciting.
   I never thought that I would feel prepared to go and teach people 
about the gospel. I never thought that I would know what to say or how 
to say it. The amazing thing is that through the MTC, my wonderful 
teacher and the way that they taught through the spirit, I do feel 
ready. I may not be perfect, but I know that the Lord will help me. The 
gospel of Jesus Christ is the most important thing to me in my life. I 
want nothing more than to be able to share that happiness with others. 
I have such a strong testimony of this gospel. Jesus Christ really is 
the Savior of the world, but more importantly, he is your Savior. If 
you will trust in him, I know that no matter what trial you are going 
through that you can make it through it with his help. If you haven't 
ever read the Book of Mormon or you have, but aren't reading it right 
now- start today. I know that it will change your life; it changed 
mine. And as always- "ask the missionaries, they can help you!"
I love you all!
Sister Heather A. Benson

Monday, May 20, 2013

First Preparation Day (P-Day) Letter, May 20, 2013

Oh hey!
From:Heather Benson <heather.benson@myldsmail.net>
To:cbenson80027 <cbenson80027@aol.com>; jonb <jonb@spectralogic.com>; heatherashliebenson <heatherashliebenson@gmail.com>
Date:Mon, May 20, 2013 2:29 pm
Family and friends!
Hey everyone! Things at the MTC are going great. I have so much to say, I don't even know where to begin. I have only been here for five days, but it seems like so much longer. I have learned so much and made so many friends! It seriously has been an amazing experience so far.
There are six Elders and six Sisters in my district. Elder Flinders, Elder Miller, Elder Anderson, Elder Terry, Elder Willmore (BROOKLYN: If you're reading this, he's from Springville and we talked about you! haha) Elder Simpson, Sister Turpinn, Sister Astle, Sister Mitchell, Sister Greenwood, and Sister Hawkins. Sister Hawkins is my companion. She is from Lindon, Utah. She is great! We have become good friends! We laugh. A lot. We also have started teaching lessons! We have taught two so far, but will teach several more this week.
Which brings me to my next point. All of the Elders and Sisters in my district are going to Cleveland, Ohio! So we will all be flying out of Salt Lake City on the same day. We are leaving Wednesday morning the 28th at about 4 am! That will be crazy, but we are all very excited to get out into the field. When people would tell me that their district would become like their family, I always thought that was kind of weird... but it's true! I love my district. We can have so much fun and be laughing so hard and the next minute be talking about something very deep in the gospel and be feeling the spirit so strong. It is great! Also- to all of my pre-missionary friends who are reading this... everyone lied! I had so many people tell me that the MTC was awful. It isn't! It seriously is great. Don't listen to them. Don't be nervous. Be excited. Seriously.
Some funny stories.....
A) Since I am clearly accident/sickness prone (it's a fact of my life. Just ask Alexa Berg... she will tell you), I got sick! Of course. So that's no fun. But I talked to my Branch President and he wanted me to let the Elders in my district give me a blessing. So I did (sorry, Audra!!!!). But it was a great experience and I actually feel much better today!

Which brings me to point B...
B) This morning we went to the Provo Temple! It was so fantastic and it was also so great to be out of the MTC and actually see the real world! And the sky! And the trees! And the mountains! Seriously, you have no idea how much you can miss those in five days. But the point is that on the way back.... I slipped and fell in the crosswalk.... and I skinned my knee really bad! I actually cut a big enough piece out of it that I had to go to the Health clinic so they could decide if I needed stitches.... thankfully not! It is pretty comical though. That would happen to me.
C) Breakfast is at 6:30 am. Lunch is at 11:00 am. And Dinner is at 4:00 pm!!! That is kind of crazy and has taken some getting used to. Even though that is kind of a bummer, the reason behind it is great. Schedules here for everyone are crazy and cramped because there are so many missionaries now! Also- for the first time in history this week there are more Sisters than Elders in the MTC. Seriously amazing!
I'm sure that I am forgetting many, many things, but I am out of time! I love you all and I want you to know that Jesus Christ really is our Savior and Redeemer. He and Heavenly Father care about us so much and they want us to return to them someday. I have a testimony that Joseph Smith really was a prophet of God who translated the Book of Mormon by the power and the authority of God. The Book of Mormon is true. It will bring so much happiness and clarity to your life if you will just take the first step and read it. Ponder about the things that you have read and pray to God sincerely asking if it is true. I know that if you have faith that he will answer. This gospel is true and I am so, so happy to be here learning how to help others to come unto Christ. Also- talk to the missionaries! They can help you! (*ahem* mormon.org) I am so excited to go help the people of Ohio in just a little over a week. It will be a great experience and I am seriously stoked. :)
Also- I don't have anyone's addresses! I can only email for 30 minutes every week. And I can only write letters on Pday (Monday). So please send me your addresses! Thanks and I love you all! Really.
-Sister Heather Benson
PS I have taken many fun pictures that I will try to send soon!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Addresses and such!

Hello all! Sista' Benson posting. My mom will be posting my weekly email on here, as well as pictures and my current mailing address.

While I am in the MTC (only for the next 2 weeks), my mailing address for letters and packages will be:

Sister Heather AshlieAnn Benson
MTC Mailbox #227
OH-CLE 0528
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT 84604-1793

I would love to receive letters from anyone who wants to write! I can also receive email, but my email access will be very limited, so handwritten letters are better in most situations (also... I will reply with cute stickers!).
Email: heather.benson@myldsmail.net

I have a testimony of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ on the earth today! I am so excited to go teach others about it and serve the Lord. If any of you want to know more, click here. Also, here is my mormon.org profile.

See ya in 18!

May 15, 2013 - Trip to Mission Training Center (MTC), Provo, utah
Written update by Cyndi Benson, Mom

It's official, Sister Heather Benson has entered the MTC and on her way to immersing herself for 18 months in teaching gospel principals and meeting new people, a different lifestyle! Amazing experiences are sure to come. Before going to Provo to the MTC we spent the morning at beautiful Mt. Timpanogas Temple.  The stained glass windows make this temple one of the most beautiful out of the 141 temples in the world.

 Jon and I dropped her off at the MTC at 12:30 p.m. curbside drop; she was accompanied by a sweet young woman who took our picture with her (notice my not-so-smiling face) and whisked away.  Attached is a photo of her before we left Colorado and her entering the MTC yesterday.  Please write to her!
She can receive electronic mail daily until about May 23rd if its sent by 1 p.m. :  Go to dearelder.com.  The Code is OH-CLE 0528.  She'll love hearing from you!