Sunday, July 28, 2013

Last week in the MTC before going out into the big new world...

[July 18, 2013]
internet is hard... hopefully i can get you a good email today.
the time has come; We are busting out of this place! but really, on tuesday i'll be heading to my actual mission.I do love the CCM, but i'm ready to get out there. This is what i've been waiting my whole life to do! Sometimes i feel preety scared ha but then i just remember how exciting it is to be a part of this work! it's pretty crazy that one month is already GONE. this mission is going to fly by. 
Well, i hope everything's going well at home! tell me all your stories! things here are pretty much the same (which is probably why i'm getting antsy to get out in the field). I have learned so much here, and i know i'm going to learn like 10 times as fast out on the mission. My spanish is... well let's just say, i hope my first companion is nice because i'm going to be lost for the first couple months ha. there are missionaries here from all over. I can understand some country's speaking better than other. if only everyone would just speak as slowly and clearly and grammatically correct as my teachers...
I really am going to miss my district. the peru ccm is really a unique experience. only 170 missionaries can fit here at once, so you get pretty close to people. and they give you a lot of freedom to do what you want. i'm not sure how it works in provo,but i've heard it's a little more scheduled... i'm just so grateful for the people i've been able to meet here. and luckily, 97 percent of them go to BYU so i'll be able to see some of them if i ever take a trip down to provo!
I think the most important thing i've learned here is that I don't have to be perfect to be missionary. I'm going to make mistakes, and i'm not going to remember the perfect scripture every time, and i'm not going to have all the answers, and i am FOR SURE not going to have the language down for a while, but that is ok! it's all part of the plan. i'm here at the time i am for a reason. every person i run into at a certain time is also part of the plan. it's weird and kinda uncomprehensible, but i truly feel that this is true. also, i have this testimony that just keeps growing. it's crazy how many answers i get a day, and how many confirmations that this is true i've had here. there's really nothing else like being a missionary in the world.
so, down to business... I believe the address on the blog for letters to be sent to is the mission home address. if you've sent anything there, i should be getting it once i report there on tuesday. emails are always welcome :) i will also use a pouch system to send letters once i figure out how...
well, sorry this email is on the lame side. hopefully i'll be able to do better once i get out in the mission field. les amo MUCHO!!
love hermana bennett (i think i once wrote 'herman bennett' on accident. oops...)

I am so happy that my face hurts from smiling

July 11, 2013


This week has been full of ups and downs, but looking back, it's really been SO great.

Some highlights:

--conversation between the two elders in my district: "It's been 3 weeks since I hugged a girl." "The last girl I hugged was my mom..." These two elders are like phil and luke dunphy when they're together. I seriously spend most of my time here laughing with them. My district is the best district that ever existed, and somehow we got blessed to have the best teachers at the CCM (MTC). The teachers all like to say, "Que en el freaking mundo!" ha ha ha i think they're actually kind of making fun of us North Americans...

--so there's a volleyball net set up on the lawn here. We have tournaments. and they're AWESOME. I'm actually not too bad. We get an hour of physical time every day, so I'll probably be like Misty May status by the time i leave.

--My hair. okay, it's really not a highlight, but it's kind of hilarious at how much of an afro i have here. Humidity is real, people.

--I really am so so happy. I can't tell you how many times a day my face actually hurts from smiling. Of course there are times I feel overwhelmed, but this is where i need to be right now.

So here's the lowdown on the CCM: My group was the first time that there has been this many sister missionaries here! there are 2 elders in my district and 8 sisters. We (the hermanas) kind of are taking over this place. People here are going to missions on places like peru, bolivia, ecuador, dominican republic, etc. It's kind of cool becuase I'm actually in my mission (Lima East) right now.

The latinos that come to this ccm are here for about a week and a half (like those who are staying in the states who go the the provo mtc), so we're going to see three different groups of latinos while we're here. Next week, my group is going to be the "advanced" group ha which really just means we've been here the longest. Honestly though, I am amazed at how fast we are all learning spanish. Sometimes, i beat myself up about not being able to speak fluently, but then I'm like, "Hermana Bennett, you've been here for like 3 weeks." It'll come. sometimes, i even have a hard time writing in English now! It's weird.

This Saturday, they are actually turning us loose to go proselyting. like, outside the walls of the CCM. So i'm terrified. But also excited. Whenever we go out for P days, I just look around and think, "these are my people!" They're so beautiful.

I want to share a quote i read from Howard W. Hunter: "Repentance is but a homesickness of the soul." As I have been studying here, I've been feeling this kind of yearning for home. It's weird though, because it's not for my home in Utah (although I do miss and think of you guys every day). It's like I'm realizing how much i want to return home to My Heavenly Father. I really am amazed at how much closer i feel like I am getting to my Savior and Father in Heaven. I know that it's happening because I am doing their work.

One thing I just want you to know: As I was doing personal study the other day, I came across a story in the Ensign where a man was upset with god because his son had a life threatening disease. As he was angry with god, an answer came to him from Heavenly Father that said, "He's my son too."If you guys ever get worried about me over here, just remember Who i have looking over me. That is what keeps me from worrying about all of you at home :)

Well, that's about all i have for this week! Thanks for all of your emails, i wish i could do handwritten letters, but about one third of the missionaries get their letters here :( Also, it can get pretty cold! if anyone asks for your advice about lima peru, tell them to bring scarves and a jacket ha. K, LOVE YOU!

--Hermana Bennett

first: my amazing district. they seriously make my time here so fun.

 second: one of our teachers, hmo gonzalez. his favorite english word: "freaking".

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

4th of July in Peru

[July 4, 2013]

[email #1 - kb]
i think it will be best if i spend the beginning of my time writing one big email for everyone and then using whatever's left to write back to everyone. I appreciate everyone's individual emails and i love you all! I read everything everyone sends to me, and it helps so much :) thank you!
This was a great week in the CCM (MTC)! some highlights:
Pineapple sopapilla. enough said.
Something my teacher said to me in the middle of class one day: "Hermana Bennett, I like your hair. It looks like a... nurse."
One day during personal study time, i was reading a book. I rested my head on my hand, because this getting up at 6 AM thing is kinda rough for me, and the next thing I knew, i opened my eyes to everyone smiling at me. Obviously i had completely fallen asleep and started snoring... :/
Every night in our room we try to sing hymns together before we go to sleep. It would be really nice except for every one of us wears a retainer at night ha ha ha. It's a good effort though.
The other day during a dodgeball game with the Latinos, one of them turned to me and said, "you know lord of the rings?" and i said, "yes." and he said, "my preciousss," pointing to a ring on his hand, in a Smeagul voice with a Spanish accent ha ha HA!
Today, they gave us a 4th of july buffet! all of the teachers wore red white and blue, and american flags were everywhere. It was SO sweet.
So. obviously there's a lot of fun stuff going on here. But i'm actually learning so much about myself, and the gospel every day. Elder Christofferson of the 12 apostles was here last week in honor of the 100th stake being set apart in Perú! he came and spoke to us at the CCM, and since there are only about 150 missionaries here, we each got to shake his hand. Right as I went in for the handshake, i remembered this one time somebody told me that you're not supposed ot shake general authorities´ hands very hard at all or you might break their wrist because they shake so many hands every day. So i totally froze ha ha oh man it was awkward. we werejust like standing there, not saying anything so then i smiled and stuck out my hand and said, "gracias!" and walked away. ha ha obviously i speak spanish when I'm nervous now! but it was a very cool experience. the man who introduced him said, "there are only 12 apostles in the world, and one of them is here talking to you right now." the one thing I can remember best about his message was that as missionaries, we are companions with the apostles since their duty is to spread the gospel to all corners of the earth. how cool is that?
To be honest, there are a lot of days here where i feel SO overwhelmed. I rarely feel like a missionary. I'm actually beside myself a lot of the time, just thinking, "Is this really happening? am i really on my mission in PERU right now?" It's still not feeling completely real yet ha ha.The other day, we had to teach some latina missionaries, pretending they were investigators. it went HORRIBLY. my companion even started crying and we just threw in the towel. And then we had to go straight to another practice exercise. I took a minute, and said a prayer beforehand. I asked for just a tiny glimpse that i could really do this mission thing. And as we taught our next lesson, it was i could feel the spirit so strongly. The words flowed so easily. the pretend investigators stood up and hugged us afterwards, saying that it was the most beautiful lesson they'd heard. I know that we couldn't have done that on our own. I know that the spirit is going to be the companion i will have with me for this entire mission, and that if i allow Him to do the teaching, i will find all the success i need to on my mission.
this week has actually flown by so stinking fast! I have a feeling that I'm going to be out in the mission field before i even know it. I am so excited! whenever we get to go out for P day, I get to see the people I'll be teaching in a month. They are SO beautiful.
Well, I've been taking pictures! the problem is, I don't get 4 days to let them upload, so i'll try to send one every once in a while. I love you all! The other day I was thinking about my family, and i received the sweetest confirmation that my Heavenly Father is taking care of you all. Remember that :) Con mucho amor.
Hermana Bennett

[email #2 - kb]

Here are some pictures! one is of the 4th of july feast, and the other is me and my compañera Hermana Blackwell at the temple.
Some things i forgot that I'm really bummed about that you should probably get to Brit (and me if you can think of a safe way) if she forgot: my business cards, pictures of family and like, my picture books from graduation, and everyone's email addresses! that last one you could just email me if you get time. How was dropping her off? I'm so excited to be out here at the same time as her. We're basically companions. :) And dad, I found your Fish! thank you! love you all.


[Email # 3 (actually went to Nash, but everone will probably like it) kb]

Nash, kenneth, bennett. I'm going to pretend like you didn't NOT email me last week... well things here are pretty rough. we get fed 3 huge meals every day. we get an hour of physical activity to do whatever we want (soccer with south americans is amazing). we get taught the gospel all day. I'm learning a lot it's hard, but so so good. Sometimes i forget how to speak english ha i'm not very good at spansih either, so sometimes, i just can't speak any language.... we have to ride these huge buses to get around when they let us out on our days off. the other day, our bus dies in the middle of the street... but they go tit working in a couple minutes with cars just buzzing past us! the building here are all kind of run down, hopefully i can send pics soon! there ARE a lot of dogs, but they're not as terrifying as the ones on the internet. just a lot of strays. write back fool.
hermana bennett