Missionary Dan Email from the MTC #11


Daniel's letter in Mongolian.

Daniel’s letter in Mongolian

Presented here are portions of Elder Daniel Willoughby’s eleventh email from the Missionary Training Center. Daniel’s departure for Mongolia has been delayed. Instead he leaves on Tuesday for Atlanta, Georgia while waiting for his visa for Mongolia.

Wow Adelaide! There is no nice way to put this but your stomach is much bigger than I remember it. :) It’s exciting that there will be another baby soon.

Jake, thank you so much! Yes, send all the advice possible, I am seeking as much knowledge as I can get. I couldn’t ask for a better idea. Your experience is one that I had just yesterday. I don’t recall a time where I bore my testimony that someone could find out for themselves of the truth of the Book of Mormon more. I invited the lady three times to meet with the missionaries but when she found out we worship on Sunday she stopped listening. She believes firmly that we need to keep all of God’s commandments but she thinks Saturday is the real sabbath. She doesn’t belong to a religion — she is searching the Bible for truths. I couldn’t have been more excited for her and my companion said I said, “You found it!! This is it!! This is Christ’s true church.” Something like that. I think I could teach the first lesson better. She kept showing all these interesting things in the Bible. I thought of a few ways I could maybe prove her wrong but the Spirit prompted me to just bear my testimony that I know this is Christ’s true church. Perhaps I was just meant to plant a seed. I have no doubt that she knows I firmly believe and know this is Christ’s church and that she can know for herself by reading the Book of Mormon.

As you are saying I know I could have talked to more people but I wanted so badly for her to realize how close she was to finding all her answers to her questions, that I think I ignored some promptings from the Spirit. The really long phone call had some good in it. She wanted to send me something in the mail so I gave her my address. The Spirit prompted me to commit her to visit Mormon.org and send in her letter something she learned about our church. I know that if she continues searching she will find the truth and I promised her that.

Thanks Jake, I have really searched out the question you told me to. I don’t have the time now to tell you my answer but I really am thankful for the help you are giving me.

Mom, sounds like you are staying extremely busy. Kelsey really likes the Davis Park ward. Thanks for the encouragement — it’s great to hear. My leg is awesome. An elder here runs track and yesterday he “made” me run a mile really fast. He is insanely good at track. He paced me to run a 5:31 mile on the crazy weird indoor track here. That’s nine seconds off of my PR for the mile so I think my leg is completely healed. I have lost five pounds which is weird.

So everyone knows I am temporally assigned to Atlanta, Georgia. It’s so exciting to be able to go out and do missionary work! I know I am called to go to Mongolia so I am not worried about getting there soon. All I truly want to do is show Heavenly Father how much I love Him by doing all I can to help His children. I lack many of the skills of a great missionary but I rely on Him to teach me what to do and say. It doesn’t matter where I serve as long as I can be serving others. I know there is a reason for everything and I may not understand all of it at first. The Lord has a great purpose for me and I will be an instrument in His hands.

Thanks for all you do family! I love you all and I am always grateful for your example.

Love, Elder Willoughby.

If any reader wishes to ask Daniel a question or to send him a message, write it in the comments and I will make sure he receives it.
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Missionary Dan Email from the MTC #10


Elders Willoughby, Apo, and Nelson at the Provo temple.

Elders Willoughby, Apo, and Nelson

Presented here are portions of Elder Daniel Willoughby’s tenth email from the Missionary Training Center. Daniel’s departure for Mongolia has been delayed.

Thanks Steven for the pictures! They are wonderful. I especially liked the picture of Sarah and Derek playing the Wii with the baby in the background by himself laying on the couch. He he. I really enjoy how you take pictures Steven, it lets me be a part of what happened because they aren’t just posing all the time.

As for our visa delays I am not exactly sure what it means that we are going to be recognized as ministers. As you know, we’ve been allowed into the country on the fact that we are just English teachers. With the little change, I think all it is, is that we are recognized that we are from the LDS Church. We still teach English and no I do not believe we can tract. As of what my teachers have said it is getting a little less strict on when you can mention the Church to people. As far as I know we still wait for them to ask us why we are there and then we can tell them. The last Mongolian elders went through a similar thing. I really have no idea what being recognized as a minister is so don’t quote me on it. As far as I know nothing has changed as to what missionaries are in Mongolia.

[I will guess that] the new baby will be born Feb. 11 at 12:45 am. Sorry Adelaide. :)

We’ve continued our studies of the gospel and language. We are learning more about “Invitations to learn” that we say to people we meet on the street. I personally love the MTC and am grateful for every moment I’ve had here. I can’t see why anyone wouldn’t enjoy the MTC. Elder Holland come for his third time to speak to us Tuesday. Each time I gain so much more from what he says.

I didn’t really unpack that much so I think I could be ready to leave in like 20 minutes. The temple is open still and we get to go today. We finished off our ESL training and received our diplomas.

I had a great experience in the RC. I received a call from a man who was calling to thank an elder for helping him to be baptized. The elder was called to the MTC because of a disability (I think he can’t walk very well). The man wanted to thank the elder personally for all that he did for helping in the process. He expressed to me how much the elders meant to him. It was really exciting to hear that the work is moving forward.

Thanks for all the wonderful advice Paul, it has helped a lot when I’ve talked to others in the RC. Thanks to Jake as well. I love you Mom and Dad thanks for being great parents.

Love, Elder Willoughby.
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Missionary Dan Email from the MTC #9


Dan and Elder Van Weezep at the Provo temple.

Elder Van Weezep with Dan at the Provo temple

Presented here are portions of Elder Daniel Willoughby’s ninth email from the Missionary Training Center. Daniel leaves for Mongolia next week.

Today has been quite the week. We started ESL training and things. Last week we hadn’t done anything yet so I didn’t say anything. We learned how to teach English grammar from like three classes then they had us teach the missionaries that are learning English. I really enjoyed it. Since I already know English it’s not very hard to teach it. We mainly introduce a new topic and then have them practice. We get over the “I’m not correcting them because we don’t want to be rude” feeling and always correct sentences, pronunciation, etc. We are also careful not to overwhelm them and keep it simple. Similar to how we teach the gospel. It has really helped me with my language. It allows me to see what it is like for my teacher teaching me Mongolian.

So my mission president only allows one email a week so I can’t write to others separately in email. I’d like to be able to address separate people and if they don’t want it posted on the blog then no need to :) (thanks Dad).

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Missionary Jake – Part 1 of 10

This is part one of a ten part series chronicling Jake’s Mission. It is told mostly in his own words using excerpts from his letters and photographs sent home.

Jacob

Preach My Gospel
Jake is an Eagle Scout and an active member of his church since birth. He stands up for what he believes in and is also compassionate to those that are in need. He is a peacemaker and is someone you want to be around because he never looks for a fight and is helpful. He played in the school band and dabbled a little at the piano. He won three state championship events in track for Davis High School. He had a stress fracture on the day of the races and took off his support boot to run. In his 300 meter hurdles he seems to get a slow start and catches the third hurdle badly.

One of Jake’s qualifying heats is a great video, as he makes up ground in this 4 x 400 meter relay. Davis are in dark brown vests and yellow shorts, the first three runners are all Jakes, my Jake running the third leg. Davis had to place first, second, or third to qualify, and Carl makes it happen even though he is not a Jake.

View Jake’s 110 meter hurdles and an exciting 4 x 400 meter race. Jake runs the first leg but watch for a runner to fall and also the close finish. The cute commentary, “O man they are all on your tail”, is Jake’s mother, who also filmed Jake’s races.

Mission

Jake is serving in the Mexico Mexico City North Mission. He has a presidential scholarship at the University of Utah and completed a year in Computer Engineering before leaving for the Missionary Training Center (MTC) in August 2006. He worked to save the entire $9,600 needed for his mission, and also purchased with his own money the necessary attire. Here are a few excerpts from correspondence to our family, in his own words.

[Read more…]

Missionary Paul – Part 1 of 10

Provo Missionary Training Center entrance

This is part one of a ten part series chronicling Paul’s Mission. It is told mostly in his own words using excerpts from his letters and photographs sent home.

Paul

Paul is an Eagle Scout and an active member of his church since birth. He earned a full tuition scholarship to the University of Utah and completed a year of schooling before leaving for the Missionary Training Center (MTC) in June 2004. He returned to the university after his mission and is majoring in Computer Engineering.

Mission

California Oakland Mission Alumni

Paul served in the California Oakland (Spanish speaking) Mission June 2004 to June 2006. He worked to save the entire $9,000 needed for his mission, and also purchased with his own money the necessary attire. Here are a few excerpts from correspondence to our family, in his own words.

June 2004

At the MTC.

July 2004

At the MTC.
Photo of Paul leaving the Missionary Training Center

Hola Daniel,

Tell Jake to help Jake C study for his mission. Have him take one of those gray Missionary Gospel Study Program booklets to Jake C and to write me to tell me whether he did those things he was going to do for me. Make it happen, thanks Daniel. I got all three of the postcards, sounds like your trip was fun. Tell Mom to ask them about my suit, and tell Sarah I’ll get a reply for her letter one of these days. The zip ties are what make the T-Maxx go, good idea. When I get back I will teach you Spanish. How is your new room? I am having a good time here, I like being a missionary. Remember to pay attention during seminary and you will know how to answer people’s questions about the church. Tell the family that I’ll try to write this week too,

Elder Willoughby