Tuesday, 21 January 2014


Dear Journal (I must find you a name!!)
40 strong international cohort of
missionaries from everywhere except the
USA. All arrived Monday night - the USA
missionaries arrived on Wed.
To be honest I didn't really know know what happens at the Missionary Training Centre (MTC). I mean Mr tells me what he remembers, but when your 'intel' is almost 25 years old - you have to wonder ;-) In one of my son's email, he said it was hard work, and trying to learn how to teach the gospel in ENGLISH is fine - but to do it in Spanish is proving to be a tad more complicated. Both boys are loving it though!! and even though not so keen on their companions YET, I'm sure as a twin they will be able to navigate having someone in their back pocket 24/7.  Mr, bless his heart reminds me every time I worry that the spirit will actually do the teaching which makes sense - so I'm not too worried!
As you do, I found to help was this webpage called "What to Expect at the Missionary Training Centre: Everything You Need To Know About Your Stay at the MTC" by Rachel Bruner at http://lds.about.com/od/programs3foldmission/tp/missionary_training_center.htm It is written to inform a pre-missionary of what to expect but I found it really helpful trying to understand what my boys are up to at the moment.....
Here are some things I was grateful to read - thank you Rachel!!:
The power dot and entering into the MTC
My son emailed me about this dot - so it was great to read. "When [your missionary] check[s] in at the MTC [they] will be given a "power dot" (bright red/orange sticker aka "dork dot") to identify [them] as a new MTC missionary. Wearing this sticker allows MTC volunteers, employees, and the other missionaries  to help, such as carrying heavy luggage to dorm rooms - [and] who doesn't want help with that? The MTC is huge, with 1000’s of missionaries and many buildings, so [ensure your missionary doesn't] feel ashamed to ask for help if [they] get a bit confused.

After an orientation with the MTC president will process some of [your missionary's] paperwork, receive any additional immunizations, and receive a packet of information that will include [his/her] assigned companion, dorm room, district, branch, teachers, classes, preparation day, mailbox, and debit card."
Companions, Districts and Branches
 "One of the basic rules for all missions, including time at the Missionary Training Center, is to always remain with your assigned companion. The "missionary conduct" rules also tells MTC missionaries to "cultivate your companionship by sitting together in all meetings and at all meals." You will share a dorm room with your companion and probably two or more other missionaries who may, or may not, be in your district which usually consists of 12 missionaries.

The district works under a branch and each branch attends regular sacrament meeting services together on Sundays." One of the boys tried to explain how it works - and I got confused but it sounds all organised and sees young men in leadership roles in just a matter of weeks which suits me! This photo is of their first temporary companions before being separated, and the boys going to their permanent Spanish speaking quarters. They bonded quickly with Elder Tangi and Elder Dixon, and can imagine their reunion in 2 years time when they finish at the same time!

Lessons, Learning, and Languages
The majority of the time at the MTC will be spent in classes with your district. Each day (except for Sundays and P-Days)  will have three classes, each with a different teacher. During class time [a missionary] will learn how to study the scriptures, preach the gospel and proselytise. For those learning another language, classes last for (almost 7 weeks), in which missionaries will learn [their] new language as well as how to preach the gospel in that language. This missionary manual of study is Preach My Gospel. This is Elder Aisake Turketo's district. Not sure how many cameras are doing the photographing ;-)
"Food at the Missionary Training Center is excellent! The cafeteria has an assortment of tasty dishes to choose from for each meal. Since there are thousands of missionaries at the MTC [your missionary] will often have to wait in a long line before you get your food....One common practice among MTC missionaries while waiting in line is to practice being a missionary, such as inviting people to hear your message, as well as practicing [their] new language."
One of the boys mentioned this in his first email - so the food has gotta be good!!
Money, Mail, & Missionary Materials
Missionaries "receive a missionary access card which is basically the MTC's debit card. Each week a specific amount of funds will be deposited into your account which you will use for laundry, meals, and at the MTC bookstore. The MTC bookstore stocks the basic missionary supplies, such as books, pamphlets, scriptures, scriptures cases, backpacks, laundry detergent, and a large variety of other missionary related materials and goodies.

There is a post office at the MTC and each missionary is assigned their own mailbox- which address is among the papers you receive when you first arrive at the Missionary Training Center."
Preparation-Day at the MTC
"Preparation-day, called P-Day, is one day set aside during your mission (including your time at the MTC) to take care of personal needs, such as laundry, cleaning, haircuts, write home, do service, and exercise. Missionaries at the MTC are also supposed to attend the Provo Temple on their p-day.

Missionaries are assigned specific duties as part of their p-day service, which might include things like cleaning bathrooms, dorm buildings, the grounds, and other buildings.

Missionaries will have time to get some fun exercise with activities such as volleyball, basketball, and jogging. P-day ends at the beginning of the dinner hour."
I got emails and photos from my boys this week on their P-Day, one of which is on Sunday (NZT) and the other Wednesday (NZT) which have now become my favourite days of the week!! They both got to go to the temple and are absolutely loving it!! I love P-Days!! They both gave me a shopping list - so off to do some shopping tommorow. I still get to be a mum and nothing makes me happier!!
So there you have it - some tidbits about what goes on at the MTC. Thank you Rachel Bruner for sharing with this MM.

See you next week,


  1. How exciting is this journey! Look how much you have ALL learnt already - the boys are glowing xx

  2. wonderful insight to your babies lives at the momentxxx