Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Caixou Week 3!

From the keeper of this blog:
A little insight into church hierarchy may help you understand who Elder Hamula (see Tuesday below) is:
The President and 2 counselors make up the First Presidency. They preside over the entire church. From them down it goes -
Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (see New Testament, Luke 9:1-2)
Quorums of the Seventy (see New Testament, Luke 10:1)
Stake Presidents
For more information -
Also, O Plano de Salvação is The Plan of Salvation. It is the underlying doctrine that directs all we do as members of the church.
For more information -
Hello lovely friends and family! Sister McEldowney again! Before I start, 'caixou' is 'coffin' in Portuguese and that's the official nickname of our classroom...where we spend most of our 16 waking hours. Great, right? hahaha!

Hey, people! Did any of you read the scriptures from last week? If you did, weren't they great! If you didn't, what are you waiting for?! 

Here goes another MTC Week breakdown!

Temple Day! I love the temple so much! It has to be one of my favorite places in the world. It ranks right above my couch when I'm watching Netflix ;)

We also had an amazing devotional on Tuesday evening. Elder Hamula, of the Quorum of the Seventy, spoke and it was incredible. His wife spoke right before him and said something that hit me really hard. There are some people who would do anything to be in our seats. It just hit me that I complain about missing the outside world and how I miss homemade food, but I am so blessed that I met the requirements--physically, mentally, and spiritually--to be a servant of the Lord. I should never complain when I have such a huge blessing like that in my life.

I felt like I was on my death bed all day because of allergies. Shocking, right? Basically the entire day is a blur, especially since I took two Benadryl right before my last 3 hour block in class haha!

So, funny story, Thursday was a roller-coaster! Basically it all happened at the end of the day, so I'll start there. We have this thing called "Progressing Investigator" or "Progressivo Pesquisador." Our teachers act as investigators and we teach them lessons in Portuguese. Well, Sister Aston and I had this great lesson plan and as soon as we started teaching, it fell apart. I think I can pretty easily say we were teaching more by logic than by the Spirit; that's not good for a missionary! Anyway, I was harder on myself than probably necessary, but it was a train wreck and I was devastated. Sister Aston knows just what to do though, so we went on our usual walk and we talked things over so I didn't cry. Anyway, when we got back to class it was about time for our teacher to, well, teach us. We were talking about the O Plano de Salvação and he had me stand up at the board really close and ask what part of the plan I saw. It was just earth and death. He asked me what the purpose of life is with what I could see, so I said to die. Then he had me take three steps back and ask what the point of life is seeing the entire plan. 

Everyone, I know without a doubt that Heavenly Father has a plan for us. We lived with Him before and we can live with Him again. I am so very grateful that Irmão Staples was in tune with the Spirit that night because remembering that I am a daughter of God is exactly what I needed. I know that Heavenly Father is aware of every single one of us and our needs. I can't even begin to tell you the love He has poured upon me. 

We taught people, for the first time, that are not our teachers! It's called TRC. I almost hyperventilated before, but Sister Aston had my back (again) and got me through my meltdown. I have to say, I have the best companion ever!!

Longest day ever! Enough said.

Meetings, meetings, and more meetings! Everyone should look up the BYU-Idaho devotional "The Twenty-Mark Note." You will not regret reading it! 

SISTER MCELDOWNEY CAN SPEAK PORTUGUESE!! Sister Aston and I taught an entire lesson on the importance of the Book of Mormon and I only had to look up one word. ONE! It was accountability. Proud moment!

Well, I'm out of time, but I love you all! thank you so much for all you do to support me, even if it's just reading my emails and giving me pity laughs (:

Amo Sempre, 
Sister McEldowney

Friday, March 27, 2015

Address Correction

From the keeper of this blog:

There was an error in the address listed in Week One. I've posted the correct address below:

Sister Kayla Raven McEldowney
2009 N 900 E Unit 101
Provo, UT 84602

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Dois semanas!

From the keeper of this blog:

1. Street contacting is where missionary companionships approach people on the street and offer to share a specific message gospel with them.

2. Zone Sister Training Leaders are sister missionaries asked to work with other sisters to help them develop as missionaries. It is a privilege and a sign of a good missionary to be asked to fulfill this responsibility.

Oi tudos! I have finished dois semanas! :D

I'll try to make this rundown slightly shorter than last week, but no promises!

Temple day! I love the temple and was so excited to go as a zone to do an endowment session. Temples are the greatest and I love that no matter what temple you're in, you know you're doing the same work. Just like church! No matter where you go, the LDS church is always the same (:
I also sang in the MTC Choir which was FANTASTIC! This little singer was one VERY happy camper!

We had a service project at 6:15AM. Sister McEldowney over here is still not a morning person. I'm pretty sure the girl running the service thought I hated her because my resting annoyed face was totally on that morning. I felt bad, but she also talked a lot and no wants to hear about your morning routine at 6:15 hahaha! 
Other than that, it was a lot of sitting in class. Our zone leaders did share the zone motto though: "Hoje Pode!" It's supposed to mean "Today you can," but they used the wrong form of 'can' so that was pretty hilarious.
Starting week two, things that aren't that funny become hilarious. I wouldn't blame y'all if you thought I was crazy after some of these emails :p

FIRST BAPTISM COMMITMENT! We had been teaching this "investigator" named Samuel. He started with absolutely no faith in Jesus Christ and didn't believe in God. The Spirit was obviously the true teacher because our Portuguese still isn't all that great, but by the end of the 5th lesson, we committed him to baptism! YAY! One more soul brought unto Christ!

SURPRISE! Samuel is now our second teacher! His name isn't actually Samuel (well maybe it is, I haven't quite figured that out yet), his name is Irmao Staples. He's the greatest! He was giving us constructive criticism about our lessons and even though I can barely speak Portuguese, he made me feel like I had just won an Olympic medal. Way to go Irmao Staples!
Speaking of that though, he talked to us a lot about our purpose as a missionary and how inspired the system is, so for those of you who feel so inclined, whip out your scriptures and read Doctrine and Covenants section 31. SO GREAT! For those of you who don't have the scriptures I'm talking about and are curious as to what I'm rambling on about, lds.org has you covered (:

Just to keep it short. We did mock street contacting and I realized that I could actually carry on a conversation in Portuguese! Oh! We also talked about these amazing scriptures! It's been a very spiritual week (:
Doctrine and Covenants 88:63
Jacob 4:7
Ether 12:27
Seriously people, great scriptures. If you're at all intrigued, either open up your scriptures or look them up on lds.org (:

Sister Aston and I have been called to serve as the zone Sister Training Leaders :D Super excited to serve in this calling! We also had an amazing sacrament and Sunday School! Thoughts from that will come next week.

Got letters from some great people! Thank you Mom, Carson City McEldowneys, Tiffany, and Holly! Other who wrote me, I got it earlier this week and will reply ASAP (:

I love you all and can't wait to keep hearing from you!

Love Sempre,
Sister McEldowney


One Week Down!

From the keeper of this blog, Sister McEldowney asked me to clarify anything that might need clarifying for those of you who haven't served a mission.

1. The MTC stands for Missionary Training Center.

2. Missions are divided into geographical zones that are then divided geographically into districts comprised of companionships.

3. MTC training to serve in your actual mission is accomplished through A LOT of role playing. The "investigators" below are likely other missionaries or MTC teachers.

Sorry for the delay with this post. We missed getting this first email due to an email address input error. Two weeks in one is happy thing, though, right?
Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Hi all!

So, missionary life is basically the greatest thing ever! I have the greatest companion ever, the greatest district ever, and I think I might even have to say I'm learning the greatest language ever! I seriously love it here so much! The MTC is just such a wonderful place!

So, relatively quick recap of my last week. 

Wednesday was crazy! I got whisked away as soon as I got to the MTC and followed my host sisters (basically my personal welcoming committee) blindly. I got my name-tag, which made everything so real and so amazing, got my language stuff, put my stuff in my room and was off to class! 

I walked into the class and the first thing I see and hear was this short, crazy stranger speaking to me in some strange language! Honestly, the only thing I could think was "What the what?!" It was so intimidating!

We were in class for a few hours, then we had dinner and went to this workshop where all the Elders and Sisters who got to the MTC that day taught three different investigators as a group. The coolest thing happened though! Our second investigator had a grandmother who was having health issues and was kind of curious about the church and stuff, and all of a sudden a thought popped into my head to ask her if we could all kneel down and say a special prayer for her grandmother. There is no way it was my idea. The Holy Ghost was totally behind that and the Spirit in that room was so strong after that! Being a missionary and having those experiences is my favorite thing ever!

Thursday we met our branch presidency and got to know our district really well! Super quick breakdown of my district:
Elder Heiner- Glorified lumberjack and self-proclaimed hipster
Elder Efros- newest member of the Jimmy Fallon Best Friend Club
Elder Kime- Piano master who believes Provo is "the promised land"
The three elders have decided they're tri-pinheros (Portuguese spelling...sorry!)
Sister Aston- GREATEST COMPANION EVER! I love her! She's so "ew!"
Sister Anderson-Funniest quiet person you'll ever meet!
Sister Perkins- My Southern California buddy! So funny and so wonderful!
Sister Gines- The spiritual giant from the least spiritual place in the world...Vegas! Haha!
Sister Bingham- Sweetest spirit and cutest little thing ever!
I seriously love my district so much!

We had gym time for the first time! I never thought I'd enjoy working out so much in my life! I look forward to it every day now! I also made a new friend that day who is now a part of the best friend club with Sister Aston and me :D

Oh my goodness, my teacher also told us the funniest story about a disappearing house! I guess he went to teach a family and they had an appointment to come back the next day and when they got there, the entire house was gone! How does that even happen?! What the what?!

We also taught out first lesson...in Portuguese! The Gift of Tongues is real people! There is no way after two days I should have been able to teach an entire lesson, but we did it! It was such a spiritual, and humbling, experience.

We were in class for forever and a day. We also taught our second lesson. In Portuguese again. I'll learn the celestial language eventually haha!

Meeting after meeting, after meeting! I was so tired that the entire day was just kind of a blur, so all I remember were the mass amounts of meetings and watching Meet the Mormons that night. Longest day ever!

Oh, we also took a walk up to the temple. That was cool. Really hot though haha.

We taught our third lesson to our investigator! We taught o Plano de Salvacao (Plan of Salvation) and I got to use my little cut-outs! the language started flowing and we touched our investigator's heart! The Spirit was seriously so strong and it was incredible! Sister Aston and I were even able to speak in complete, Portuguese sentences! It was such a blessing. 

so far I've done my laundry and emailed, but I GET TO GO TO THE TEMPLE TODAY! Holy cow! I'm so stoked!

Well, I love you all!
Please feel free to write me! dearelder.com is the greatest and mail is seriously a delicacy here!

Sister Kayla Raven McEldowney
2009 N 900 E Unit 101
Provo, UT 84602

Alright, I love you all!

-Sister McEldowney