Tuesday, April 30, 2013

First Week in Jamaica!

Hey everyone!
I'm finally in Jamaicaaaaaa! But, I'll first catch you up to speed with everything that happened at the MTC and whatnot. The MTC was stressful, but very spiritual and fun. I am soooo happy to be outta there. I left on the 23rd, I got to call my family home, and Kallie, so that was so good. I can't wait to call mom on Mother's Day, which is soon! I think I will be able to skype! Sweet. 

Okay, so Jamaica. What to say about Jamaica... This place is nuts. I got off the plane and you could immediately feel the humidity. It is so heavy here, but I'm getting used to it. I actually am so glad because it was extremely dry in Utah. And, off the plane, there was this creepy rasta man who asked if I was a Mormon, and I said yes, and he told the Elders that he would come to church if I was there. We got out of customs and immediately met the AP's. They were super nice. I just have to say, I LOVE PRESIDENT HENDRICKS. He is so cool. He took Sister Austin and I to his home, but when we got in the car he immediately bumped into this guy walking in the street and yelled, "Move it DIPSTICK!" I felt so happy, seriously. Anyways, President Hendricks (the Mission President) is a crazy driver. Everyone in Jamaica is terrible at it. And it's on the other side of the road, so I kept thinking cars where coming at us, but it was an illusion. We stayed at the mission home in Kingston, and Sister Hendricks fed us, it was so good to not eat MTC food.

The next day I got assigned to my companion and area. My companion is Sister Woolf (mind you, she has only been in Jamaica for 6 weeks) and my area is Linstead, Jamaica. After that all the missionaries getting transfered went to KFC, which is much cheaper than American KFC. Anyways, Linstead is a funny place. There are literally NO white people here. Just Sister Woolf and I, so naturally we get stared at all the time. People yell, "WHITEY!!" and "MISSIONARIES!" and "WHITE PEOPLEEE!" Where we live is a rural little farming place, called, "Time and Patience." (They have weird names here). The house we live in is perfect. It's not nice or anything, but it has everything we need. We don't have warm water, and the first night I was here, the water went out. Of course. But, it's all good. I am grateful we have a place to stay! 

Linstead is the main town, and it is like a downtown kind of area. Hundreds of people are on the street all day, selling, driving, honking and blasting reggae music. When Sister Woolf and I walk, men seriously blow kisses at us. I've been asked like five times if I want to get married. It's annoying because we are trying to look for legit investigators, and we can't really know if a guy is really interested or just wants to be seen talking to white girls.

Everything here is so colorful. Like every building is bright orange or green. I seriously love it! There is a lot of poverty here, but everyone just seems happy and loud. Linstead is safe. No worries. There are also lots of members looking out for us, and everyone knows we are missionaries. We also have a car! It's this old beat-up truck, which I get to learn how to drive soon. One of the older missionary couples are going to teach me! It's stick shift, and I'll have to learn how to drive on the other side of the road. Oh and to make you feel better (or worse, depending how you look at it), we keep a machete in the truck just in case. HAHAHA! No worries man.

English here is a joke. This might be an english speaking mission, but everyone pretty much speaks Patawa. Which is like really thick pidgin. I can't understand half of what they are saying, but the key is to just listen. I've learned a few words like, "wagown" (wah-gawon) which means: "What's going on?" Sister Woolf still has a hard time trying to figure out what they are saying as well. Whenever we go teaching, we take a  member with us, so they translate if we don't get everything. So if I come back speaking like a fob, y'all know why. 

The members in this town are amazing. All of them are converts, and so strong. Church on Sunday was so funny. Most of the people are from former churches and so when someone reads a scripture, they will say stuff under their breath like, "Amen," "Agree," or, "Mmmhmm." Also, everyone is bad at singing hymns here. Probably just because they were not raised on the hymns. I got to bear my testimony at church, like all new missionaries do, and it went well. I am SO happy to be here.

Okay, so we don't have that many investigators at the moment, we have been going contacting a lot, and trying to get referals from members. But we do have one guy named Bryan, with a baptismal date. He's been taught since January, and he has already been interviewed to be baptized, but the person interviewing him didn't think he was quite ready. BUT, on Sunday he said he wasn't feeling well, and the Elders here gave him a blessing, and he was brought to tears. It was a beautiful blessing and I asked him how he felt and he said warm in his heart. I love it! He walks to church every Sunday and he lives far away. I can't wait to see him be baptized, even if I didn't do much to contribute to the effort.

Sister Woolf is awesome. She is so cute! I am already friends with her on Facebook mom, so if you want to look at her profile her name is Brooke Woolf. She is a hard worker and has really taught me so much! Her and I wake up at 6:00 every morning and go running on this closed freeway. Honestly, if I don't run in the morning here, I can't wake up. So, hopefully I'll be super fit and healthy by the time I come home. The food here is pretty good. It's a lot of filler food, so like rice and beans and dumplings. All carbs. The rice and beans are always flavored, so I like it. I ate at this place called Juciees, and ate a meat patty, which are SO good here in Jamaica.

What else?! I don't know. Oh, a member washes our clothes for us, we pay her.  It's nice so we don't have to take the time out of our P-Days. Um, I feel like so much has happened, but I have no idea what to say! This last week has just flown by.

Jamaica is amazing. Everyone blasts music out of their cars. I mean like literally, they have huge speaker systems set up on the roof of their cars. People here burn trash, because there is nothing else to do with it. There are so many goats everywhere. Some people are pulled around in carts by donkeys. Everyone dresses super colorfully. The members are awesome, and the women treat us like their own daughters. I'm still getting used to the men here giving us a lot of creepy attention. I don't really like it, but if they start talking to you, you automatically just interrupt them and start talking about the Gospel. There are churches on every corner. But, everyone knows about the Mormons. We are coming for them! ;) hahaha! Love you all!

Respect man!

-Sistah Pitt

Elder's Birthday








Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Sister Pitt Welcome to Jamaica!

Sister Pitt and the other new Missionaries with their new companions!

Dear Brother and Sister Pitt,

We are happy to let you know your daughter arrived safely in Kingston, Jamaica. She is in good spirits and arrived anxious to become involved in the great work being done here. When she arrived we met her at the airport and brought her to the mission home where she spent her first night. We helped her with banking and immigration matters and then provided training and orientation.

She was interviewed and met her trainer, Sister Woolf. They then went to their area where they began the work she came here to do. Your daughter will be serving in Linstead. As parents we can appreciate your concern for her and her welfare and felt you would like to know she is safe and doing fine.

We want to thank you for raising such a fine daughter and for your support for her while she is here. Your support for the next few weeks while she may experience some homesickness will be very important. The work is really beginning to blossom here in Jamaica and the people are warm and friendly. We are confident she will have a special experience. We can assure you we will do everything we can to help her grow and develop and are confident her testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ will increase. Through her mission experiences she will draw closer to our Savior. We are so grateful to have her here.


T. Scott Hendricks                                 Sister Marian Hendricks
Jamaica Kingston Mission

Thursday, April 18, 2013

First and Only Letter From the MTC

Family, Friends, Loyal Fans,

I AM SO HAPPY ITS MY P-DAY. I have had dreams about emailing you for the last three nights. (I only have 1 while I'm here). I've been here for a week and one day now. This was the longest week of my life. In a good way. The MTC is really nothing I expected. It's better than anything I could have ever imagined, and the biggest emotional roller coaster I've been on. The spirit here is so consuming. I can't even count on my fingers and toes how many times my mind has just been blown and I've gotten goosebumps all over. (And not because It's 40 degrees). SERIOUSLY, It has snowed, and all I have is light clothes for Jamaica.

My companions name is Sister Savage. She is from good ole' Lehi, Utah. She has been such a blessing because she has the most contagious laugh in the world, and frankly, it gets really tough here, and she always makes me feel happy. We have so much fun. When we are not "studying," we are just laughing about everything. I feel like so much has happened and I don't know how to summarize this last week. 

First off, all we do is eat and sit, eat and sit, eat and sit. The food is just like regular cafeteria food, nothing special, but each Wednesday and Sunday is ICE-CREAM for dinner. Well, I make it ice-cream for dinner. (You could eat other stuff). Seriously, the ice-cream here is the best in the world, I'm not even kidding, I've never eaten anything better.

Okay let's talk about all the amazing things that have happened! This is probably going to be out of order, but I seriously don't even remember when I did things. All the days have melted into one. Okay, so guess who came to our Tuesday Devotional? Everyone said not to expect an Apostle or anyone really high in the church, but RICHARD G. SCOTT came! It was so awesome. His talk was so amazing. He spoke about prayer, and about pouring out your heart to your Heavenly Father. It really made me want to be better about communicating with the Lord, and believe me, I have said so many prayers while I've been here. Probably like 20 a day. But, I still need to have that constant communication with my Heavenly Father. The most amazing part of his talk was his testimony of the Lord. He said, "I know God lives, because I know Him." It seriously gave me chicken skin and I felt so warm all over my body. The way he said it, and the conviction he had in his voice was so powerful. It really made me think about how many prayers he has said in his life to be able to say that he knows the Lord. I loved it. ALSO He gave us an Apostolic Blessing. That seriously blew my mind. I couldn't believe that. He blessed us with strength and with hope. He blessed us that the Lord would answer our prayers. 

The first few days I was here, everyone was just saying, "You just need to make it to Sunday," and how right they were. The first few days were so overwhelming, but once Sunday rolled around, I was so joyous. Relief Society was awesome. The speaker was Mary Edmunds, who has served about 5 missions for the church. Her whole talk was hilarious. She was sooooo good at uplifting all of us and helping us realize that we are meant to be here. For about a minute she talked about not touching the Elders. We were all cracking up. She then proceeded to say, "Don't touch the Elders..... but keep in mind who you want to touch later. So, no touchy now, but as soon as you get home and they are home, TOUCH." I don't know, it was kind of like a you-had-to-be-there moment, but it had all us women rolling. SPEAKING of all the women, there are SO many sisters here, it is really amazing at their power they have. So many people were effected by the mission age change. The Lord is really hastening his work. Anyways, back to Mary Edmunds, she also spoke about how you will never regret serving a mission and how we have journals that need to be filled with our adventures. I think she knew many of us felt discouraged, but she said, "All you can do, is the best you can do, and the Lord will do the rest." How right she is. Even in one week I have felt that. 

My District is amazing. They are soooo awesome. It is made up of four sisters and four elders. Elder Williams is our district leader, he is 25 years old. He has been in the military for the last couple years I think, and decided to serve a mission. He is so dedicated and works so hard. He is so funny, because I can tell he gets irritated with the rest of us, because we are all 19 and 20, but he is also patient. He is going to West Virginia, just like the rest of the elders and sisters in my district. Elder Hohneke is his companion, and he is 6'5". Elder Williams is like, 5' 4". It is so funny watching them walk around. Elder Shepard and Elder Cagel are the other Elders in our District, one word to describe them is, "DORKY." But they are the comic relief. Elder Cagel, I have never met someone so funny in my life, and he seriously doesn't even know he is funny. For example, Elder Cagel came into the room the other day pretending to be blind and we were like, "What are you doing Elder Cagel?!" and he created this long elaborate story about how he lost his eye sight. I couldn't stop laughing. Also, Elder Shepard is hilarious. He always asks my opinion about everything. "Sister Pitt, what do you think of this quote?" "Sister Pitt, what do you think the significance of this butterfly in the painting is?" And the list goes on and on. Sister Wines and Sister Holden are the other sisters is our district and they are so sweet, softspoken sisters. It makes up for the loudness of Sister Savage and I. We have really grown together. I have also felt really bad, because there are times after I teach a hard lesson (to a fake investigator), and I just cry. None of the Elders know what to do. I can't help it. 

Speaking of lessons, I've also had some amazing ones, as well. I have really felt like I've learned so much, and I am learning so much about teaching Doctrine. But, it's not easy, and it takes so much work. I AM NOT QUALIFIED FOR THIS. I seriously have so much to learn and I don't know the exact order or scriptures and biblical stories and what not, but I really have learned it's not about that. Yes, teach the Doctrine correctly, but meet the needs of the investigator. Find out what they want in their life and what not. 

Elder Cagel just walked by and pretended to be stuck in the washing machine. He is so random, I love it. hahaha

UGH I feel like there is so much I have to tell you. OH, my companion and I were called to be Sister Training Leaders (basically Zone Leaders), but for sisters. We also gained another companion yesterday because she got a rash or something and couldn't leave. Anyways, I'm so stressed out, I will cry tears of joy when I get to leave here. I feel like I'm trapped. I love the sisters in my room. We just sit there and giggle for 20 minutes and talk about the future and what not. We are all so excited to serve. Only three sisters are going to Jamaica here. And about 8 elders. I am so excited. AHHH.

The days are long, and short. The hours are forever, but end so quickly. Time is an illusion here. I like it. I also hate it. Overall, I'm loving it. Don't worry about me. Every little thing will be alright.

Peace and Blessings,

I'm official!
My Companion, Sister Savage, I love her!
We're going to JAMAICA!

My MTC District!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Thoughts before the mission.

2 days till I report to the MTC. I am in a glass case of emotion. I am nervous, anxious, excited, and euphoric. I have had my call since November 2012, so I have been patiently waiting. I have had a ton of time to prepare, but this whole mission thing is something you really can't be completely prepared for, at all. I guess I don't fully understand what I've gotten myself into, but I have this deep desire in my heart to serve. I also know that this is what the Lord wants me to do.

I enter the MTC on Wednesday, (April 10th). From here on out, my mom will be in charge of my blog. Feel free to write me! (Please do, I would love it!) My contact info is on the sidebar. I'll be gone for 18 months, so I'll miss my family and friends, but I am happy.