Beautiful Guatemala

Beautiful Guatemala
Me with a random field worker. I love the knife!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

"I Think I Was Supposed to be Guatemalan!"

July 27, 2011

Hola familia and amigos from Guatemala!

Life is great here at the CCM! But I still only have 30 min on the computer, so sorry that I can't respond to all emails. My new companion's name is Hermana Audrey Guyant. She is from Eagle Mountain UT and went to Southern Utah U studying el ed and special ed. She will be serving in Honduras. She is a great teacher, and even though she didn't know much Spanish coming here, she has learned a ton and wants to work hard. She's great! 
So our schedule here every day goes something like this:  up at 6:30am for personal study til 730 gym, then get ready and eat breakfast at 9, then class/teaching practice til lunch at 1, then more class/teaching practice til dinner at 530, then class/teaching practice til 9! Every day is full and busy. We don't speak as much Spanish here as I thought we would because there are tons of Americans. There are 110 missionaries total here, 26 sister missionaries, going all over Central America, and the rest elders going only to Guatemala. There are a lot of Latin Elders but only a few Latin sisters. The facilities are super nice because this place is pretty new. All the teachers and workers and Mission presidency and their wives are so sweet! Things are much more layed back here than at the Provo MTC. The schedule isn't super firm, and they're reasonable about things. I love the food here! I have loved everything!! I think I was supposed to be Guatemalan! And the little cooks here are adorable. They cook all kinds of food, including asian and american food, but I love the Guate food. A typical meal here usually includes beans and plantains and carbs carbs carbs. So needless to say, I've been needing to work out harder during gym time. All 3 meals are huge! And you have to eat all the food they serve you because the cooks here cook with their hearts, and so when you throw it out it hurts their feelings.
Not much is going on here other than that schedule. I really like being here. The other day we sat outside and read from 3 Nephi 11 where Christ comes, and it was really special to be reading about Christ visiting around this area in the world! I am so excited to soon get to teach the Gospel to these wonderful people. They are so sweet and humble and ready for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Yo sé que esté Evangelio es verdadero! Jesucristo es nuestro Salvador y a travéz su Expiacion podemos a regresar a Dios. I love being a missionary! Thank you all for your support!
Hermana Gilland

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Kylie's in Guatemala

Hola familia!! 

I made is to Guatemala safe and sound! I only have a few minutes to email today just to tell y'all that I made it. I'm so sorry dad that I couldn't call you! Apparently when you use a calling card on a payphone it takes off twice the minutes or something, so when I tried to call it said I had insufficient minutes. I'm sorry!!!
The CCM is super nice, much nicer than the Provo MTC. The food is delicious and our rooms and stuff are really nice. There are 110 missionaries here. There were armed guards at the gate mom, but it didn't seem too crazy serious or anything. One person told us that the pouch for pouch mail leaves once a week from SLC and from here in Guatemala, that's a lot better than what they told us in Provo. But then just now someone said that you in the states cant use pouch, only us... so I really still don't know whats best...sorry! It seems pretty confusing. But for sure the address for the Guatemala MTC in my missionary book is correct, but again I don't know how reliable the mail is yet. I'm really excited to be here! It is so beautiful here, so much green! We haven't really spoken any Spanish yet, I hope that changes. Oh and my p day is Wednesday, so you'll hear from me again next Wednesday!  I love you all so much and am excited to hear from y'all. At the CCM Ill still only have 30 min to email, so I will probably only write the one big email. I'm not supposed to respond to emails other than from my family, but I dont know yet if I can receive emails from others. Anyways, sorry this was so scattered! 

Love you all! The church is true!  

Hermana Gilland

Monday, July 18, 2011

Kylie's Third Week in the MTC

Hola family and friends!!
I hope everyone is doing great, as usual :) My week has been crazy but pretty much the same as last week...sorry I don't have very many cool things to say. I fly out tomorrow! Isn't that crazy! Then I'll spend 6 weeks in the Guatemala MTC before I really start my service. So definitely in my next email I'll have lots of cool stuff to tell about.  I am really excited to be totally emersed into Spanish so that I'll hopefully be able to communicate alright after 6 more weeks. It is really amazing to see the progress that we all make here. There is no possible way that we could be learning so much without the Lord's help. I've just been working all day on packing and getting everything ready for tomorrow afternoon! I can't believe that tomorrow is the day!
I have one cool thing that I do want to share from this week though. I gave a talk in Sacrament meeting in Spanish! Yikes! So in my branch (like a ward but smaller, the congregation, we all worship together on Sunday) all of us missionaries are given a topic at the beginning of the week and we're all supposed to prepare a 5 minute talk, but no one knows who is speaking until the Bishop announces the program. So everyone stresses about it all week. I spoke about repentence and specifically the importance of repenting every day in order to have the Spirit.  I was super nervous but it ended up going alright. I saw a little miracle for me happen from speaking. In my setting-apart blessing to be a missionary, I was blessed that I would have the ability to speak powerfully to those I teach with no impediment or barrier. Well, even though I can hardly speak Spanish, I was blessed to be able to share a very simple message that all my peers who are at the same speaking level said they could totally understand. What a comfort is was to see already that I am already being blessed to be able to communicate the Lord's message to his children in ways that I didn't really expect. That definitely boosted my confidence that I'll be able to impart messages about the Gospel to the people of Guatemala with the Lord's help.
I really don't know what else to share with everyone. Thanks so much for your letters/emails and support. It means the world!  Sé que Jesucristo vive y nos ama y nos quiere que venir a Él. Testifico que tenemos un profeta de Dios hoy. Testifico que Dios tiene un Plan por nosotros, un Plan feliz y bonito. Amo este obro y tengo gracias para mi oportunidad a servir.
Have a great week! I love you all!!
Hermana Gilland


Monday, July 11, 2011

Kylie's Second Week in the MTC

Familia y amigos!
It was great getting everyone's letters and emails this week! I was just jokingly scolding y'all for not writing me tho ha ha, I TOTALLY understand that everyone is super busy :) Since I only have 30 min to email I prob won't get to email everyone back individually, but I'll write you soon I promise! I really appreciate the support from everyone, thank you!  (and please excuse my spelling, it's already going downhill with all the Spanish ha ha)
Anyways, this week has been crazy of course. The first few days I was here were like the longest of my life, but this past week has FLOWN by. I can't believe it's Monday already! This week we've been cramming our brains with Spanish. Mine is improving a lot, but when we practice teaching I still have a hard time speaking, I think because I'm nervous or something. But that's OK, it will get better. I really love Spanish and cannot wait til I can speak well. I can already pretty much have conversations, bear my testimony, pray, and function alright, but there is still SO MUCH to learn! I am realizing how much I need the Lord's help in learning more about the Gospel and how to teach and learning Spanish. I am learning so many great things here that are going to help me be a missionary and will help me for the rest of my life. It is very difficult for me already, but I am so glad that I'm here! Sundays are great here and I can really feel how much the Lord wants all of us missionaries to succeed! Its a great feeling. Last night they were playing the movie "The Testaments" (the one about the coming of the Savior to the people of Ancient America) and it was so exciting to think that that is where I'm going! Me and my friends started joking that we're going to the Guatemala Zarahemla mission (however that's spelled...) because that's right where all the Book of Mormon action went down! I am so excited to help those people come closer to Christ!!
Me and my comp share a dorm with 3 other sisters who are going to another mission in Guatemala and we have lots of fun together. I also LOVE my district. We've gotten super tight in the 11 ish days I've been here. The elders are great and want to work really hard, so I don't have to be too bossy with them - jk ha ha. We'll miss them when we leave!
So me and 11 other missionaries fly out to Guatemala next Tuesday, the 19th! I can't believe that's here already! We'll be in the MTC in Guatemala City for 6 weeks. I am nervous but really excited to get there! My friend here, Sister Atkins's little brother is already at the Guatemala mtc and says that a few days of the week he has a native companion and a few he has an American. He also likes the food better :) The food here in Provo is getting rough ha ha. They have pretty good salads and so I ate one for almost every meal last I hate salad ha ha. I think I'll eat soup all this week. I don't think I'll be gaining any weight here in the mtc ha ha.
Well I wish I had more cool things to write about! But we basically just sit in class and eat all day. I'm sure things will get much more exciting in the weeks to come!
(don't judge my spanish!)  Yo sé que nosotros tenemos un Padre Celestial y nos ama mucho. Sé que Jesucristo es mi Salvador y también es sus Salvador. Sé que José Smith es un profeta llamó de Dios y Presidente Tomas S Monson es nuestra profeta hoy, llamó de Dios. El Evangelio de Jesucristo es verdadero y podemos bendecir nuestras vidas.
I love you all! Gracias for your support!
Hermana Gilland

Monday, July 4, 2011

Kylie's First Week in the MTC

Hola familia y amigos!
Life at the mtc is very busy and loco, but its good here. we are totally busy from 600am to 1030pm every day. My companion is Hermana Willie, she grew up on a Navajo reservation and went to BYU like me. She's very sweet and we are getting along great. Hermana Crooks (from Lubbock) is in my district (district=group of ten or so missionaries that you have class and everything with), along with one other Hermana and 7 elders. The elders in my district are great, they all want to work really hard and get lots done, and they act pretty mature, all things considered. The boys will be in the us mtc for 9 weeks because they're going to Chile, so i already know that I will miss them when we leave.  Oh and hillary, a really good-looking byu football player is in my district :) I'll be trying to set you up when he's back haha or with an amigo maybe. I'm on the lookout for ya hill!  We're set to go to guate on july 19 but I don't know yet when I'll be calling, but I'll let you know!
Every morning at the mtc they have extra workout classes for the sisters only, probably so we don't gain so much weight...and we've been going almost every day. Then we have lots of personal study time and class. We are desperately trying to learn espanol! In about 2 weeks we won't have anyone to speak english to, so we have to hurry!! My spanish is coming along pretty well. High school spanish is actually helping me. I bore my testimony in espanol on sunday, and it was just a baby testimony but its a start. I can understand most of what people say but I don't know grammar much at all...but it will get better. Now with all this spanish practice I have a hard time thinking in either that's not good haha. but it is fun, I'm so happy to be learning spanish!
The food here is...well, not great, but edible. I'm a little bummed that I've gained a little weight even though I haven't yet eaten anything I really like. But oh well, everyone says that we'll be sure to lose weight in guate so I'm not worried. There has also been lots of talk of parasites and yucky things like that, so I'm a little concerned about that...
We got to watch the stadium of fire fireworks on Saturday and stay up a little late! so that was pretty cool. We have also already had some great fireside/devotionals and I'm excited for many more to come.
The mtc is hard, I know it will challenge me here in lots of ways. But I have already learned a lot and I'm grateful for the experience so far. I really can't wait to know spanish! We do this thing here called "progressive investigator", where our teacher pretends to be an investigator throughout the time we are here and we teach them in spanish, and normally I would love that because I love talking to people abotu the church, but its hard because I have lots I would like to say but I can't! But that motivates me to work even harder!
Yo se que Jesucristo es mi Salvador, y se que el Evangelio es verdadera. Testifico que Dios nos ama y quiere que ser felicidad!  Y testifico que El libro de Mormón es verdadera.  That is my simple testimony, and I can´t wait to share it with everyone in Guatemala! I´m freaking out about leaving so soon but I know that the Lord knows what I need and where I should go. I´m greatful for His guidance in my life.
Have a great week and actually email me back please! I got a letter from Meg G and Hrma Jones and a nice package of cookies from Aunt Lori, but I think a few more of you should be writing know who you are!
I love you all! Thanks for your support!
Hrma Gilland