Serving in the Sydney North Australia Mission

Friday, August 30, 2013

Still in the MTC... For a few more days.

Dear Family,

I hope you are doing well this week!!  I have had an awesome week full of good and not so good hahaha.   But it has been an awesome experience and I have grown so much!  Today or tomorrow I will find out if I get my visa or a temporary reassignment.  There are 13 missionaries going to Australia including me and my old comps.  Nine of them got reassigned because they didn’t get their Visa’s and four are still here (including me).  The Mission president told me I have a good chance to get my visa so that is why I wasn’t reassigned with the rest of my district. I don't want to get my hopes up though!!  I’ll email you as soon as I know anything.  It was really hard saying goodbye to my comps and my old District.  I literally love them so much!! They were awesome!

I actually don't have a companion right now haha.  I am staying in the same zone but a different district and I just kind of do my own thing as long as I am teaching classes or in class learning.  It has been cool cause I have learned a lot so now I get to teach new missionaries!!  I mainly stay with Elder Hendricks and Elder Eagleston. Elder Hendricks is a Character!  I love them though!!  They will be serving in the Nampa Idaho mission with Chris!!  Pretty cool. 

Elder Eagleston, Elder Watts & Elder Hendricks

Thanks for the packages mom. Everyone thinks I have like 5 Girlfriends sending me stuff!!  I just tell them my mom loves me and they say well my mom must not love me!! Haha.  One benefit of being here longer is I get to go to the temple for a second time!  We go every P day and it is such a cool experience!  I am so excited to go and be able to receive some answers and figure things out.  I can't believe how incredible this gospel is!  Something that I learned was that The Prophet, Quorum of the twelve, the Seventy, and Missionaries are the only people on earth to be able to invite anyone to be baptized and can carry it all the way through?!  This work is incredible.  The spirit I have been able to have with me is so awesome. 

Tuesday night we had a devotional with Neil L. Anderson!!  It was so good!  He gave an awesome talk.  He said that sometimes things can go wrong in the mission.  He told a really sad story about a Missionary that had bought this brand new bike and a brand new suite with his own money and it was really nice stuff.  This missionary was riding home on the second day in the field and crashed his bike, breaking the spokes and handle bars along with multiple holes in his suit.  When he walked his bike home and got in his apartment he couldn't find his watch so then ran to his desk drawer and his monthly rent was gone!  $1,300 DOLLARS!!  He lost all of that in one day!  The next day he served.  The message was about service and loving people even though you are going to have hard times.  It is so much easier said than done!!  But it is true.. Service brings the spirit and the light of Christ and can lift your burdens. 

I just want you to know how much I love all of you.  The Gospel blesses lives like you wouldn't believe!  God works in very interesting ways but it is for the better.  He knows each of us and has a plan for every one of us.  I know that to be true.  Hopefully I will be calling you all in the next few days!! I love you!! Have a great weekend!!

Love, Elder Watts

Shortly after we received this email from Alex we got the following message from him:

Hey I hope you get this email. I just got reassigned to Salt Lake City East.  Honestly not happy but I have the Lord on my side.  Leave for SLC next Tuesday 6:00 a.m.  I think I take FrontRunner hahaha.  I'll let you know more as soon as I know more.    

Monday, August 26, 2013

First Letter from the MTC

Alex has had a great experience in the MTC.  He has written us several letters and one email which is posted below.  He was put in a threesome with a companion from Wyoming and a companion from Idaho.  He loves his two companions and his district.  He was called to be the district leader on the day he arrived in the MTC.  

His first letter to us indicated he had received his Visa and travel plans and would be leaving the MTC on Monday, August 26th.  We were expecting him to be traveling today but we received an email over the weekend that said there was a mix up and he didn't receive his Visa yet.  At this point he will be in the MTC until Thursday, August 29th. We are not sure what will happen then.

Following is his first email from the MTC we received last Thursday:

Dear Family,

Hey everyone how is it going in Kaysville?!  The MTC is great!!  I am for sure excited to get out of here but I also love it and will miss my comps and the rest my district so much!!  I wish the food was better at times but for the most part it is pretty good. 

          We have been doing TRC training and what that is, is the MTC brings in volunteers from off the street for us to teach.  We had two investigators and I want to tell you about one of them.  His name is Jose and is from Guatemala.  He moved to the United States when he was 26.  He had a really rough childhood growing up and worked very hard.  We were teaching him the first lesson and finding things out about him.  He was asking us where God was when he needed him when he was a little boy.  It was really hard cause he seemed so sad.  We taught him God gives us weaknesses or challenges in life so we can become strong.  A scripture came to my mind (Ether 12:27) that I shared with him.  We finished that lesson and went about our day.  We challenged him to read the BOM and Pray to know God loves him and cares for him.  The next day we taught him again and at the end of the lesson he seemed really engaged but confused a little.  I talked with him for a sec and asked him to pray right now and ask if God is there and if he loves him.  He said the most beautiful sincere prayer I have ever heard.  He had hardly any knowledge of the gospel but had faith.  When he finished the prayer I looked at him with tears in my eyes and said we love you Jose.  He started crying and said he felt the love of God.  It was an awesome experience!  The Lord blessed me so much to be able to communicate with the spirit. 

       Mom, the packages are amazing!!!!  Like everyone in the MTC looks at me like I am a celebrity cause of all the packages I bring into my room hahaha!  So thank you!  

Olivia!! the drawings and notes you have sent me are hung up all around my room and desk!! Thanks so much! They help a lot and I feel loved! I love you!! Have fun in school!!  

Joseph!!  Jr. High Baby!!!!  Heck yeah!!!  You will love it and good luck!!  Thanks for the notes man! They mean a lot and I read them every night!  I love you booz!

But mom thanks so much for the packages and Dad thanks for the letters and your testimony! The articles you have sent me help so much and I read them a lot!!  If you could send me a few hangers that would be awesome and maybe my CTR ring if possible!!

I really can't describe how much I love all of you!  The support is unbelievable and I feel so special.  Thanks for everything Mom, Dad, Olivia, Joseph and Riley!  You guys are my hero's!!  Thank you, thank you, and thank you!!!!  The church is true!  I know it is.  With out a doubt in my heart.  I love this gospel and teaching it to others and am so blessed to be able to go to Australia!!  I will send a few pictures and describe them and hopefully call you guys in a few days!!  Love you all and can't wait to hear from you!!

Love, Elder Watts

Here are a few pictures Alex sent with his email:

Alex and his two companions

Alex and Dillon Yokum

Davis High Missionaries