Monday, September 28, 2009

Halfway done with the MTC!!!!

Hey what's goin on? Holy cow I cannot believe that I'm already halfway done with the MTC!! We have to start teaching in Spanish this week which is sure to be a humbling experience. It'll be good though cause I think it's when I will learn the most. It's coming pretty well, it's more of a matter of practicing the language and trying to remember all the rules. It'll come though, I guess I'm ok cause people have said I've been doing really well. I know I'm still not that great and have a long way to go. This week has just flown by, it's crazy how all the days just seem to melt together. It seems like yesterday was our first week, and we're going to lose another district that's going to Cordoba and Rosario on the 12th. That'll be pretty crazy because they're the ones I've grown closest too, and after they leave my district will be the oldest which is just kinda weird to think about. I feel like we're still the nuevos, but we're not anymore. Oh I saw Ryan Jensen, he's not in my zone but he seems to be doing really well. It's kinda weird seeing him here in a name tag and badge, but at the same time it's so awesome. I see Bryan about once a week too which is really cool just to catch up with him and see how he has been doing. I swear he's gonna have more baptisms than I will, that kid is a champ.

We met with the Consul from Argentina today. It's one of the requirements to get your visa. Honestly it was kinda boring cause most of it was a question and answer period and people were just asking a different variation on the same question. It was cool to hear about the country though and what to expect. From what he said Bahia Blanca is a pretty poor place, and somewhat like Utah which was interesting to find out. I know I'm gonna love it though. I can't wait to get out there and start teaching real investigators instead of the "investigators" we have here. I'm excited to get there and have no idea what anyone is talking about because they'll be talking so fast and have that Castillano accent. It's gonna be awesome. Well the weeks are flying by and I am absolutely loving it. This place is awesome and there is no doubt in my mind that the Church is true. I'm so excited to go try to have the same effect on other people that the missionaries taught us did. I'm grateful for them every single day and I wish I could talk to them and thank them for what they did. I love you all, until next week.
-Elder Gaughan

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Week 3

Hey everyone how's it going? What's new? Yes I did get the packages you sent me, sorry I didn't tell you earlier I thought I did. Thanks for everything, you all are the best! This week has been pretty crazy, it seems the longer I'm here the faster the time goes. I can't believe I've been here for almost a month already. Either this week or next week we go into solamente español which will be pretty interesting. If nothing else it will probably be quieter. But it´s gonna be a great experience and it´ll really speed up the learning curve which will be awesome. The other day we had to speak in Spanish for 2 hours and needless to say it was pretty tough. It was a really humbling experience and I came to the realization that I don´t know nearly as much as I thought I did. I saw another friend from SVU this week, Kyle Tyree, I think he might have already left cause he´s going to the MTC in Brazil. It was way cool to see him though. We lost another district this week, they are headed to Ecuador and Paraguay. It´s pretty crazy how close I´ve grown to the Elders in my zone, and we´ve only known each other for a few weeks. I will miss them, but they are gonna do great things. Ryan Jensen comes this week which is gonna be way cool. There is a possibility he could be in my zone, but I haven´t heard anytyhing yet.  If he is that'd be awesome but it's not likely. We got nuevos this week and it was kinda funny to see the wide eyed look on their faces and think that was me just a few weeks ago. They seem to be doing well though, and once they get used to the schedule they will be fine.  Last Tues Elder Holland came and spoke at our weekly devotional. Needless to say it was awesome!!!!! He talked about how important his mission was to him, and how we're not really taking a break from real life. He emphasized that this is real life! We need to appreciate every minute and work hard every single day. NO REGRETS!!! He's a lot like me too, I found out he was also the first missionary in his family. How crazy is that? Well know that I am still loving it here. I have no doubt that I am doing what the Lord wants, and that this church is true. It brings so many people so much joy there's no way to deny it. I hope you all are doing well and tell John to write me. I haven't heard anything from him yet. Until next week,
-Elder Gaughan

Monday, September 14, 2009

Week 2

Hey everybody how's it going? Things are going well here at the MTC. This week has flown by, it feels like it was just the other day that we were first getting here. That's pretty funny about Ryan's talk, I wish I could've been there for that. We are losing our first district in our zone today. They're going to El Savador and they leave in a few hours. It's pretty crazy to see these guys are leaving already. They've been the greatest examples to me, and I know they're gonna do great work. Seth French from SVU is in that group that's leaving, he's an awesome kid and has been a great help to me since I've been here. It's crazy how fast the time goes here. With this district leaving we get some nuevos which means we're not the new guys anymroe! I had my first experience in the Referal Center this last week. It was pretty sweet, I only got to talk to one lady (I guess it was just a slow time in the day) and the missionaries are going to here house so hopefully something good comes out of that. I'm excited to go back they're and hopefully talk to more people. I've seen Bryan a few times, he seems to be doing really well. I wasn't in the same room as him in the RC but hopefully I'll get to work with him soon. Elder Hinckley (Gordon B. Hinckley's son) came and talked to us at our Tues devotional. It was so cool!!! He talked about how great the work is we are engaged in. I can't wait to get out into the field, but I know I still have so much to learn. Spanish is coming ok, I can talk for a fairly decent amount of time, but still can't teach yet. After our 4th week we have to do all of our teaching and everything in spanish. It's gonna be intense, but it'll be a great way to get the language down. Know that I love you all. I am engaged in something that is absolutely amazing and I am loving it. I wouldn't trade this for anything. The church is true, and I can't wait to spread the gospel. Until next time.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Elder Gaughan's FIRST Letter Home!!

Hey everyone! Well I've made it through my first weekend at the MTC. Everyone has told me that the first week is the longest and the toughest. I've already learned so much and I still have a long way to go. One of my teachers, Hermano Ames, served in the Carlsbad Mission. How crazy is that?!?!! I was talking to him on the first day and he totally remembered us and having dinner at our house. He's way cool and a great teacher. My other teacher is Hermana Rizley, she served her mission in Peru and is also a really good teacher. The spirit here is amazing. I feel it daily almost all day, if not the whole day. So long story short I love it here and am doing really well. Spanish is moving really fast. We've already covered almost everything I learned in high school and we're learning so much more. We try to talk to each other in Spanish as much as possible and it's done nothing but help us get better.

My companion is a really cool guy. His name is Elder Banks from Spanish Fork, Utah. We get along pretty well and when we teach we seem to bounce back and forth smoothly which is really cool cause we've only known each other for 4 or 5 days. We both struggle with different aspects of the work, but we are always there to cheer each other up and get back to work. Everything here is work, work, work, but it's awesome. We have already improved quite a bit and I know we will continue to get better. Elder Banks and I attempted to teach one of the tutors here in Spanish. Needless to say we struggled quite a bit, but it was a good experience and we have become more motivated to do all we can to learn the language. The other 2 missionaries that we room with are Elder Seegrist and Elder Johnson, both from Utah. They're really funny guys and we get along great. The 4 of us have started to read the Book of Mormon in Spanish to help us learn the language faster. It goes slow, but we feel it's helping a lot. We're all going to the same mission so there is a chance that we could meet up again in the field which would be great. I already feel so close to these guys and I know we will grow closer as we continue our work here.

There is so much to tell, but we only get half an hour to write an e-mail so it's tough so write everything on I want. I've seen a bunch of people I know already. Seth French from SVU is in my zone. He leaves for El Salvador in a week. I've also seen Robbie Garret also from SVU. As well as Andy Nelson from the stake and Nik Greenwood. I finally saw Bryan yesterday during dinner. We haven't been to the Referal Center yet, but hopefully we go soon. He seems to be doing well and I can't wait to meet up with him again and see how his experience has been.

Sorry my thoughts are all over the place. We've been told that the days feel like weeks and the weeks feel like days. It's true, I honestly can't remember what we did on which day. I miss everyone and hope you are all doing well. Preperation day is Monday so that's when you'll be getting these e-mails from me. Oh and tell everyone that if they Dear Elder me they need to select the MTC when they're saying where to send it, otherwise it might get sent to Argentina. My P.O. Box is 310 if anyone wants to send me letters.

I'm almost outta time, but know that I'm doing really well. I'm progressing and loving it here. I hope everyone is doing well and tell people to write me cause I want to see how they are doing. We had a fireside last night and the speaker talked about the longterm effect we have as missionaries when a family is baptized. It made me think of the missionaries that taught you and how grateful I am for them. It's because of them that Iam here today preparing to do the same thing for others. This is an amazing place and I know I'm doing what I need to and what I should be doing. Tell Mike, John, Alex, and Tara hi for me. And tell them to stop being lazy and write me. I wanna know what they're up to. Once again I miss you all, but don't worry, I'm not coming home. I can't wait to get out into the field and get to work. I love you all,
-Elder Gaughan

Friday, September 4, 2009

Return With Honor

Nick at the Newport Beach Temple.