Hey Everybody!

So I am sitting here, on Tuesday, My first P-Day of the mission, and life is simply amazing! I just got done with a great time at the temple, which was good to be able to only have to walk five minutes and not drive two hours ๐Ÿ™‚
Thanks to everybody who sent me letters this week (Mom, Dad, Lisa, Elysse, and Hannah, you are all awesome, everyone else, up your game)! It is great to be able to get a peice of paper that says Dear Elder on it, and I get way excited and count down the seconds until it’s 9:30 and I can open it and read all about y’all.

The MTC is awesome. I love every minute of it. I can’t believe we have only been here for 6 days, because you learn so much everyday! In Russian, I can pray, introduce myself, bear my testimony, and do a street contact and door approach. The teaching is going well too. We have our first TRC (Teaching something-with-an-R Center) appointment tomorrow. Our job this week is to do 3 street contacts in a park, and set up an appointment. Then we have to go and talk at the door with our appointment. After we go inside we get to teach the lesson in English, so it’s not extremely difficult ๐Ÿ™‚

Our teachers are really good at what they do. Right now we have Brat (as in bratwurst, I’m romanizing it, I don’t know how to switch the computer to cyrillic, and I don’t want to waste my precious time doing that this week!) Fry, Brat Savage and Sestra Pico. All three of them served in Russia, and know the language really really well. They are the same teachers that Tyler…err Elder, Pulsipher had, so they work asking me all these questions right when I walked in the door on Wednesday it was great. Also, R. Scott, Brat Savage says hello, I guess he lived by you in AF before you moved to Amarillo.

The MTC is basically a freshman year reunion. I have seen everybody that I know finally! I saw Brandon Richards when I was walking to the temple this morning, and he completed it. It is awesome to see and talk to everyone, and we bear our testimonies to each other in our languages whenever we see each other. Mikey Caplin left this morning, but I saw him yesterday and gave him a big hug goodbye for you Suzette.

I supposed I should talk about my companion, district, zone and branch, haha. My companion is Elder Rhodes, he is from Mission Viejo. He happens to be Elder Oaks great-nephew, so I feel like I better be on my extra best behavior so he doesn’t write a letter to his uncle! He goes to BYU, and lived in Budge Hall, the building next to mine, but we never knew each other. He is a great kid and works really hard. When we teach, is stresses out a lot, and I don’t think he has a lot of confidence in his ability, but I can see it there that he is an amazing teacher. Yesterday we were teaching and in the middle of the lesson, I just took his notebook away and said "don’t think, just teach. You know what the lesson is supposed to cover, and you know that the message is true, so just spit it out" and after that I felt the spirit punch me in the face, it was great! Brat Savage told us we did a really good job, and that Elder Rhodes improved a lot than the time before! We are total opposites, but we get along great. He is quiet and reserved, and I am a lot more outgoing. It is great because it seems like whatever one of us lacks, the other is great at, so we will both become ideal by the time we leave, right?

Our district has 9 Elders, and no sisters. 7 of us our going to Dnepropetrovsk, and the other 2 are going to Rostov and Semara (sp?). We like to call ourselves the "Dnepr Dream Team and 2 Dirty Russians", haha. We all get along really well and work extremely hard. One of the other teachers, Brat Doroshkin (he is a native Russian) told us that we were the furthest along district so far since he started teaching! That made me feel super good about myself and how terrible I am at the language right now! There is another district that came in with us, they have 6 Elders and 3 Sisters. 5 of the elders are going to Ukraine, and 1 to the Baltics. All of the Sisters are going to Ukraine, I can’t remember which missions they are divided between, numberwise, it’s either Kyiv or Donetsk for the rest of the district other than Elder Seitz, who’s going to the Baltics.

Our zone has two other districts, an older one who has been here 7 weeks and leaves at the end of the month, and we just got 9 natives who got here this morning at about 4 AM. I am excited tot talk to the natives, because I know they will help me a lot with the language. Our branch is just our zone, so there are about 50 people. Our branch President is going to be a general authority someday, I would put money on it! He was the mission president in Rostov, and our first counselor was the mission president in Novosibirsk. They both speak Russian, and know a lot about the culture, so it’s really good to have them. Our branch motto is "Exact Obedience". President Harrison always talks about being perfect in everyway that we can, not only so we can have the spirit, but so that we can be trusted to be a missionary, not a body in the mission field.

I learned a new way to tie my tie yesterday, it’s how all the Euro’s do it. It is really cool looking, it’s hard to explain, but basically, there is a line diagonally on the knot, because its like two little knots. Haha, I bet that made know sense at all, but I like it.

I miss everyone, so packages and more letters would be nice to keep my spirits hopeful! Mom, the only thing I need is money for the 2 shots that I didn’t get. I should get them sometime right after the 18th of this month. It will be $120, so if you could put that in it’d be great. I’d like to be able to go to Ukraine and not die ๐Ÿ™‚

All and all I love it here. The work is amazing, and life is great. I’ll try to romanize some stuff in Russian:

Ya znahyoo shtoe Eesoos Khristos Zhiv ee znahyoo shtoe kuhneega Mormownah eesteena ee slowvah bowgah.

I’m running out of time, so I hope you can read that, but it says "I know that Jesus Christ lives, and I know that the Book of Mormon is true and is the word of God".

I love you all, and we send more next week!

Meer ee blogahslahveet
(Peace and Blessings)

Elder McClintock

PS: Mom, I am the only kid in my zone who didn’t get a package this week……….. ๐Ÿ™‚

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