Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Snow Day


It's been snowing all morning so everything is covered in white. Our walk to the temple was a little slower because all of us were afraid of slipping! The temple was great. We went as a district again and ate breakfast there. I am dreading the day I have to leave my district! We are all so close and it will be hard to not be with them everyday! We had two districts from our branch leave this week. All of them were called to Brazil but none of them have their visa so they were all reassigned. The places they were reassigned are: Birmingham, AL; New York, NY; Oklahoma City, OK; Charleston, WV. Still no word on our visas so I'm planning on being reassigned when that day finally comes. (Only 3 more weeks! Crazy!)

Just to update on Elder Hatch...when he went to the doctors last Tuesday the cyst/tumor they were worried about was gone! So he's all good to serve his mission. Last Wednesday the stomach flu made its way around the MTC again. There were 88 cases of it just in one day. My roommate, Sister Wolfley, had it but thankfully none of us caught it from her.

I've been called as the new Coordinating Sister for the branch which means the little amount of personal time I have won't really exist anymore. But that's ok, I'm looking forward to getting to know all of the sisters better. With my new calling I'll have meetings three nights a week and two on Sundays (one at 6:50 am!). We also got new zone leaders, Elder Lant & Elder Anderson. They are awesome and they will be serving in Brasilia like me :)

I've been trying to be more diligent with speaking Portuguese while I'm here because if I'm reassigned I don't know how long I'll go without practicing it. The thought of teaching in English scares me. I'm more comfortable with Portuguese!
Well, that's it for now. Everyday I realize how lucky I am to have the best family and friends! I feel your love and support and it makes the biggest difference!

Sister Kerr

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

4 More Weeks!

Hi all!

I have officially been at the MTC for over a month and have less than a month left! Woo hoo!! It's starting to get so crowded with all of the new missionaries!

Last Tuesday night for our devotional we had Jeffrey R. Holland come speak. He was amazing!! He said so many great things, but the one that stood out to me was when he told us this is real life! I've been in the mindset that after my 18 months I'll return home and go back to real life. He impressed upon us the realization that our missions are part of our lives. We will still have good days, bad days, and life experiences....this is as real as life will ever get. I know in some ways it's very much not like real life, but I'm glad he shared this message with us. I wish I could write about his whole talk...it was so inspiring!
Sunday, I gave the opening prayer in Relief Society in front of all the sisters! The amount of sister missionaries since I entered the MTC in December has probably almost doubled. There were so many! Sister Wixom, Primary General President, spoke and was awesome! This past week has been full of great talks :)

Last night we had a branch meeting and our branch president shared with us that one of the elders who has been here 2 weeks had a very serious doctors appointment this morning. We all prayed together for him. They think he might have cancer but nothing is certain yet. His name is Elder Hatch so keep him in your prayers.

This morning our district went to the temple together and then ate breakfast at the cafeteria in the temple. It was my first meal not eaten in the MTC Cafeteria in like 100 meals or something like that. The change of scenery was nice! The days are long, but the weeks are short. Every day I learn something new. Sister Ryan and I still love being companions, I know I'm very lucky to have her.
I think that's all for this week! Thank you SO MUCH for all of your letters, emails, and packages. You have no idea how much they mean! If you know of other missionaries in the field take some time to write them...they will definitely appreciate it :)

Sister Kerr

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

(Almost) Halfway Done!


Can you believe it...I've been at the MTC for 4 weeks! I'm almost to the halfway point. There isn't too much to share from this past week. We got 4 new sisters in our branch this week. We were supposed to have 5 but one already speaks Portuguese so she was moved into the advanced branch. Sister Ryan and I have two roommates now - Sister Hunt and Sister Wolfley (their names kinda go together, huh? haha). They are really cool so we lucked out. It's hard to have 4 girls crammed into a room, but we manage. Both of those sisters will be serving in the Brazil Joao Pessoa Mission.

It snowed last Thursday and Friday, and we had some flurries this morning when we walked to and from the temple. Last week it snowed a lot! The temperatures are still freezing cold (literally) but we don't spend a lot of time outside. Lately, Irmao Williams has been taking us on "vocab walks" where we take some time out of class to walk around campus and learn the Portuguese words for things like tree, sky, plants, etc. It's actually really refreshing to get out and breathe the fresh air! We moved into a new classroom on Thursday night so now all of the Portuguese districts are on the same floor.

Apparently President Uchtdorf was here on Sunday night and he spoke to the departing missionaries! I'm so jealous I didn't get to see him. Elder Tautolo (the elder who flew out of Long Beach on the same flight as me to the MTC) reports to the field today so I won't see him anymore. He's serving in Florida. Even though we didn't really know each other he would always say, "Hi Sister Kerr!" I'll miss seeing him.
I've included this link about the Manaus temple dedication. You can get a taste of what I will someday speak! 

That's all for now. Miss you and love you all!!

Sister Kerr

Tuesday, January 8, 2013



It's Tuesday which means it's my P-day! I have trouble falling asleep on Monday nights because I am so excited to check my email the next morning!! There is a lot to say so I'll type as quickly as I can. This morning Sister Ryan and I went to the temple which was really nice. It was closed the last two Tuesdays for holidays but now we will get to go every week.

Every Wednesday we get new missionaries at the MTC and last week there were a ton! Tomorrow we're expecting even more. So far Sis Ryan and I have lucked out and still have a room to ourselves, but we doubt we'll be so lucky this week. Our branch is getting 5 new sisters and losing 1. Sis Christensen got her visa to Brazil so she left this morning. Maybe visas will start rolling in now! Last Wednesday morning it was -2 degrees...yes, there is a negative sign in front of that 2!! The elders think they're cold but they don't know what it feels like to have to wear a skirt in that kind of weather! Surprisingly I'm not as cold as I thought I would be. I wear less clothing in -2 degree weather in Utah than I did in 45 degree weather in Cali. Funny how that works.

The MTC has switched over to a 6 week language program so the sisters that come in tomorrow for our branch will leave the same week I do. Oh, and starting next week our sacrament will start at 7:30 am. That's early!

Some of you might have heard about the stomach flu epidemic that was going around the MTC. Apparently it made the news because Aunt Shauna, Grandma Kerr, and Aunt Terel all wrote me letters asking about it. Thankfully nobody in my district was affected, but from what I heard it was pretty rough for those who did get sick. We have been under a no hand shake policy for a little over a week now because of it.  I'm a little sick today but just with a runny nose and sore throat.

It's amazing how tired I get from sitting all day! There's never enough time in a day to do everything I have planned. This past Friday we started going to TRC (Training Resource Center) which is where we go in and teach people for about 20 minutes. They are normally RMs who speak our mission language. Even though Sis Ryan and I were super nervous we loved it! It's a great experience and it really makes us trust that we know the language well enough to communicate some sort of message.
I know I have a million more things to say but time is limited. Hope everyone is doing well! Love and miss you!

Sister Kerr

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!


Happy New Year! It doesn't feel like the new year here, the same way it didn't feel like Christmas but that's okay. Emailing with the family last week was the best part of my Christmas!! It meant a lot to me :) We had Elder Russell M. Nelson come speak to us last week on Christmas day which was cool, and then we had a fireside with Greg Olsen that night which was awesome! Elder Nelson's talk was more focused on missionary rules and staying obedient; Brother Olsen's was about the Savior and he showed some of his paintings and gave some insight on them. It was so great. It snowed a ton last week!! And it's snowing again today. It was 10 degrees on Saturday morning...10!!! And I have to walk around in a skirt in that kinda weather! It's definitely been an adjustment.

The days all kind of blur together. I can't remember which day I studied what...it's all one big memory of learning, eating, and sleeping. My district is still the best...we're so lucky to have the elders that we do. Thank you to everybody for sending mail, packages, dearelders!! The other day Elder Cunningham got 4 letters from his family and said, "Now I know what you feel like everyday, Sister Kerr." haha. I really do appreciate all the mail and hearing from everyone! It's nice to stay in the loop about what's going on back home. I know my responses are short and don't answer really any of the questions you ask me but know I'm doing my best to respond with the time I have! Plus, MTC life is pretty standard. My schedule won't change for the next 7 weeks until I leave. To answer one question I've received, Sister Ryan is from Idaho Falls, Idaho. She's 22 and was helping in a preschool classroom before coming on her mission.
Portuguese is still going great! I've memorized the Missionary Purpose, James 1:5, the First Vision, and the baptismal prayer in Portuguese (not that I'll ever have to say the baptismal prayer, but we are supposed to know it). What's funny is, I don't even know the First Vision in English haha. My teacher Irmao Williams is awesome, but so is our other teacher Irmao Buttars. He was the member who played the role of the investigator, Marcelo, last week. He's an RM and served in Brazil. He brings the spirit when he teaches like nobody else! He is honestly the best teacher I've had.
Where does the time go?? I have to go but I miss you and love you all!! Tchau!

Sister Kerr