It is a practice of those that are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormon) to serve a mission for the church for no pay. Boys are encouraged to leave at age 19 for 2 years. Girls can go when they are 21 and serve for 18 months. Older senior couples also serve missions (usually when all the kids are grown up) for 18 to 24 months.
Missionaries are called to serve all over the world. The objective of the missionaries is to teach others about Jesus Christ and of His Restored Church, to bring of peace and happiness, and to serve those around them in anyway possible.
I received my mission call to Bulgaria in June 2006. Prior to opening up my mission call, I had no idea where I would be going, though I had a feeling it would be somewhere totally random and unexpected.
Look at the shock and excitement on my face when I opened up my mission call!
|Before I opened it! The moment I had been waiting for for 20 years and 275 days!|
|Gotta love that face!|
Three months later I entered the MTC! I was in the MTC for 2 months, during which time I studied Bulgarian and the scriptures for 14 hours each day! I was in a group with 12 other missionaries and we had so much fun together learning and growing. Not everyone loves the MTC (Tanner....). For some it is boring and long, but I loved it. I loved my teachers, my companion Sister Thomas, and the Spirit that I felt there everyday. I was a little anxious and nervous to go to Bulgaria and start teaching real people. I was so comfortable just practicing! But the day finally came when I left for Bulgaria and once I was there it was awesome!
My mission was amazing! Everything about it was perfect. I learned and grew so much. I learned more about Christ and His love for me and all people. I became closer to Him. I learned more about myself - my gifts, talents and tendencies. I learned how to work and live with all kinds of people. I learned BULGARIAN and became more educated. In every way I grew.
I am eternally grateful for the experiences I had on my mission. It was definitely the hardest thing I have ever done. There were times I wanted to give up and go home. But the Lord strengthened me and I kept on.
I have so many stories I could share from my mission. I will have to share more on my blog soon. But today I am remembering my moments as fresh new missionary.
Here are a few pictures from my time in the MTC:
|My MTC Group with our amazing teacher!|
|Me and Sister Thomas practicing phone calls in Bulgarian.|
|Trying to make pudding in my room in a box and plastic bag.|
It was not good - tasted like plastic chemicals.
|Super Sister - on her way to save Bulgaria!|
|My amazing companion Sister Thomas and our great teachers.|
|My little brother Mark and I were in the MTC together for 4 weeks. |
It was a dream come true!
|On our way to Bulgaria! Good Luck!|
Добер ден. Аз съм Ани. Много съм щастлива че можах да служа в Българиа!