Elder Case and his brother, Stephen
Hope you are all doing well! Thank you for your emails this past week. Sorry I am not able to respond to them. Because they limit my email time at the MTC it is hard to read and respond to emails but I will try and respond to you all through letters. Thank you for your love, prayers, and support. I love you all!
Something that has been on my mind a lot this week is the quote by President Packer: "The study of the doctrines of the Gospel will change behavior quicker than a study of behavior will change behavior." I have been thinking about this because I am surrounded by more than 2,000 young missionaries here, almost all of us still teenagers, and yet when you walk around, you here hymns being whistled and sung, you here people sharing insights into the scriptures and bearing testimony, you see heads bowed in humble and earnest prayer, and you see people becoming converted to Christ. It is incredible. Elder Gray and I keep talking about how there is no other instutition, organization, or anything else on this earth other than the Gospel of Jesus Christ that could so quickly change the hearts, the desires, and the behaviors of us young people. It is incredible to do as President Lewis instructed me many times and to recognize the change that will occur in myself as the Lord gently molds me into who He wants me to be.
President Ashton is going to be the best mission president in the world! I love him and his wife so much! On Saturday they walked into the cafeteria t lunch and I recognized them and went and talked to them and they came and sat with us. I sit with 5 other missionaries going to Houston South, so it was fun to talk to him. We then got to meet with him and his wife Saturday night for two hours and they talk us and pumped us up for the field. I already am getting sad knowing that in two years I will have to leave them. They are absolutely wonderful people. For all you about to have a baby, Sister Ashton was planning on having her baby today. She was just shy of 9 months pregnant while she sat through hours on end of training here at the MTC. Elder Zwick told them to have there baby in Las Vegas (where her parents live and she has had her other six children), take a full TWO WEEKS to recover and then report to the field. Meanwhile, President Saylin will hold down the fort. What a great example of faith and obedience. This will be their 7th child. 6 boys and 1 girl. The oldest is 13.
We got to hear from Elder Perry on Tuesday night. I didn't make it into the actual building that he spoke in so when he finished, Elder Gray and I were able to leave right away and we watched the apostles and presidency of the seventy walk by. I then saw Elder Holland down the hallway on my way to dinner but never got to shake his hand. Security was nuts and they blocked the cafeteria in half the whole week. When Elder Perry spoke, there were ten apostles there and the entire presidency of the seventy. Elder Gray's best friend from Logan is named Elder Fisher. Elder Fisher is companions with Elder Pace. Elder Pace and I have become good friends. He is 18. He graduated high school ten days before entering the MTC. His sister is 19 and she is here right now too. His parents were called as mission presidents and they were here too. I got to meet all of them. It was like a family reunion. Anyways, because his dad is mission president, he got to bless the water during the sacrament meeting that had ten apostles and the first presidency on Sunday! How awesome is that. He was scared to death beforehand but said it was a sweet experience.
President and Sister Ashton ate three meals with us and would just talk and teach us the whole time. It was incredible. We saw him the morning they left for Vegas and he tald us a little about what the brethren taught them. What a neat experience to be able to learn from the Lord's chosen servants here upon the earth.
I have continued to grow in my love for the Book of Mormon the further I study and ponder it. I know it is true and I have learned so much from that book. Elder Gray and I taught three different lessons yesterday in Spanish. That was pretty tiring but it was good to recognize how much we have progressed since our first lesson on day 3. We are learning to teach well with each other. I love him. He is awesome!
Oh and just so you all know. Stephen is definitely winning the whole see Michael the most on his mission game. We ate lunch together yesterday.