Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Week 1: Mexico MTC

Hey family!

I just want all of you to know how much I love you! Also forgive any grammar mistakes, spanish keyboards are different so my typing is messed up until Im back stateside. Anyways well its weird without me huh? Well let me tell you its pretty weird without all of you. Fortunately I have a very good district and so I havent been homesick all that much because im surrounded by good people and always so busy! So I guess Ill start with last Wednesday!

Wednesday was a lloooooooong day travelwise. It was pretty strange going through security at the airport by myself. There were so many missionaries that flew down with me though, so there was at least comfort in numbers! I grabbed a bite to eat in Phoenix with some other elders and then it was time to go to Mexico. Mexico City is so crazy. It seems like theres pretty much no rules at all down here. Ill get to that in a sec though. Immigration was awful, took an hour and a half to get through after we got off the plane. Then when I went to go pick up my suitcases they had arrived late (which didnt matter since immigration took so long) but they were in a weird spot and I thought they had been lost, it was super stressful.  But eventually I found them and it was ok, though Im sure it was hilarious watching me try to pull three suitcases through the airport (just like dad said it would be). Once I got my bags customs was pretty easy though, literally all you do is push a button. If you get a green light youre fine and dont get checked. If the light turns red they check your bags. Pretty ghetto huh? After that it was just waiting with the greeter for everyone to show up at the airport. Oh also in Phoenix, this guy came up to me at the airport and asked if I could help him. He said he had seen a lot of well dressed young men at the airport and was wondering if we were all part of the same group or something (We didnt have tags yet). I got a pretty good kick outta that, and it also showed me how important appearance is! I told him that we were all choosing to serve missions for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and that we were headed to the Mexico MTC (in retrospect I should have said the full name lol). He remarked that the world needs more young men like us, but he hurried off before I could give him a Book of Mormon which would have been awesome!

Sorry for the wall of text, the travel was just crazy! Next up, we took the shuttle to the MTC. Having seen parts of Mexico City, super glad Im going stateside! Its just kind of whatever out there, especiallly on the roads. In fact there was a fender bender right in front of us and our bus just went around it at the last second!

Once I finally got in we were so late they just sent us to dinner. Walking into the MTC was a bigger culture shock than Mexico City, I feel like Im in BYU Mexico lol. Pretty overwhelming and weird at first. In fact Im still adjusting. But thats ok, as frustrated as I can get I really do love this place, its amazing. After dinner there was a bunch of orientation stuff and moving in. And then orientation has just been spanned across four days until Sunday really. Kind of weird to me they dont do it all at once but Im glad its over and I have a somewhat normal schedule now.

Alright time for my companion since I know youve been waiting to hear. Err actually companions. Im in a trio with Elder D (my original companion) and Elder H (his companion didnt show up). I have to say that Im adjusting pretty well to just about everything except for being in a companionship. As much as I love my companions, I either love them or hate them...lol. Im a bit disappointed that im in a trio, it makes doing anything super hard. At least in a regular companionship you only have to meet in the middle of a line. In a trio, its like trying to find the centroid of a triangle. Its especially bad because theyre both pretty care free and seem to have no regard for any of the rules. And Im trying to the rules pretty seriously... So it can be pretty frustrating at times. We have already taught three lessons to our "first investigator". And the first two were a trainwreck because me and my companions couldnt agree on the lesson even after praying several times. Oh well, we are all still adjusting. Theyre at least fun people and can laugh things off so thats good. Even though I can get very frustrated trying to mediate their arguments, theyre still good people and Im trying to see what Heavenly Father sees in them.

There is one other thing Id like to share, and thats that the Spirit is so strong here. Despite all the frustrations and occasional homesickness, Ive already had some amazing spiritual experiences here. Heavenly Father has told me on several occasions that if i will keep working hard and do my best that it will all work out somehow. Im really grateful for that and so I just keep working my little butt off! Spanish is definitely hard and intimidating but the Gift of Tongues is absolutely a real thing! Ive already come so far and all of my middle school spanish has come back to me and im very grateful for that. The MTC or CCM in Spanish is truly a little piece of Heaven inside of the craziness of Mexico City.

Most importantly, I want you all to know that I love you all and that Ive kept you in my prayers everyday. While I havent been super homesick and know that Im in the right place, I still miss you all like crazy. I still am not sleeping all the way through the night and thats when I think about you the most. Heck I even dream about being home. But its ok, I know that if I work hard and do what Im supposed to the Lord will make great things happen one way or another.

Sorry my first email was all over the place, still figuring all of this out! I hope that you all have a great first week of school and that all goes well for you. I will try to respond more to your emails from now on, I just had so much to tell you! Just know that I am safe and doing well down here, even if I get frustrated with my companions sometimes. I also apologize as I apparently need a card reader to send pictures, which I was not aware of. So I will look at the store for one or try the usb cable so that I can send pics next week, Im really mad I cant this week!!!!!!

I love you all so much and cant wait to hear from you all again. This is Elder Butterfields weekly status update, erytime.

With Enormous Amounts of Love,
Elder Butterfield

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Safe Arrival

Hola Family,
Just wanted to let you guys know that I made it to the MTC alright. It was a long day, and I already have a few stories to tell you, but I'm short on time! Biggest is that there are six of us missionaries all going to Fort Lauderdale, and we flew down to Mexico together! I hope you guys are doing well. I am for the most part, just a little culture shocked. Anyways, my p-day here is Tuesday so expect to here from me then. Feel free to write me before that if you'd like. Love you guys so much and wish you the best! Hope to hear from you soon.

Elder Butterfield

Next Stop: Mexico City, Mexico

Our last moments with McKay.

Not goodbye--see ya in two!

Beginning the Journey

McKay became Elder Butterfield on Tuesday, August 19, 2014. A proud, but bittersweet moment.