Monday, December 31, 2012

Arrived at the MTC

So I have more time to type today so I will be able to give you an update of everything that has been going on. To start I'll talk about the plane rides. When I was flying to Texas they gave us some food on the plane and it was alright. But I started to feel kinda sick after eating it. I shook that off and just kept on with what I was doing. When I boarded the plane to London though that's when it all broke loose. I began to feel awful and could barely stand straight. And I could barely sit without being nauseous. So I started making lots of trips to the bathroom and time after time I threw up hahah the lady that I was sitting next to was getting very irritated with me because I kept asking her to move hahaa. So I ended up just waiting for her to fall asleep and I started doing like acrobatic maneuvers over her while she was sleeping so that I could make it to the bathroom without waking her up!

After that we landed in London and I was really still not feeling well so I stopped in a few more bathrooms. I then started to feel a little better. We had so much time that we decided to go out and look around London. One of the missionaries with us really wanted to go to the center of London. Right before we were about to buy our tickets to ride the train to the center of London I had the strongest feeling that we shouldn't go. So i spoke up and was like "hey guys I am not feeling quite right about this trip, i don't think we should go" everyone was ok with that. Except one guy he was pretty upset because he had been talking about it the whole time. He had been so excited to go tour around but that ended up not working out because of the prompting I had. After waiting around the air port for about 9 hours we found out that the train we would have taken to get back to the airport all the drivers were on strike. So basically we would of taken the train the center of london (4 hour walk or so) and then we would have no way back because the drivers were on strike. So I guess that prompting was a good one to follow hahaha :)

Then we boarded the plane to fly for africa. And that flight wasn't so bad because by this point I had gotten over the food poisoning--which was a really big relief. So I slept for a few hours on this flight and for the rest of the time I just stared out the window because there wasn't anything else I could do. Oh yea I forgot to tell you I talked to a lady on the plane to Texas and we talked about the Gospel the whole time which was pretty cool. She was very interested but I didn't land a Book of Mormon.

After landing in Africa we just walked around the airport trying to find where we were to be picked up. Everyone was speaking a different language and all of us were a bunch of Americans that either couldn't understand their form of English or had no idea what language it was haha. After walking around for some time we finally found a sign that said LDS MISSIONARIES so we were like hmm this is the place. So we just waited until we had collected the rest of the missionaries. After that we were transported in a van with 11 missionaries and about 33 bags of luggage. But the van was huge so we still had a lot of space to stretch out which was way nice and really enjoyable. We drove through the city and it was remarkable how well it was developed. Johannesburg is a very developed place that kind of reminds me of california... except there is barbed wire everywhere because apparently it is the capital of the world for crime and murder....who knew.

After traveling for about an hour in the van we finally reached the MTC and we were given our companions. I was paired up with Elder Paki, He is from New Guinea he is a very good guy. He is learning the english language right now and he is learning extremely quickly. It is amazing to see his improvement  The spirit is really amazing what it can do, it has helped him learn the english language very quickly from what I have been seeing.

After that it was straight to work. Dad you have always said that idle hands lead to the devils work well there is no such thing as idle hands here. The days start at 6:00 am and we often finish everything and are in bed by 10:30 pm. I think they must live by the line that busy hands lead to the lords work or something hahaha :) but it really has been remarkable. I have felt the spirit here more then I ever have. I feel like the difference is remarkable. It must be a combination of things. Me and some of my roommates were talking about how it must be related to being set apart and having a spiritual companion with you at all times. So your heart is always full here. Reading things that I had read before now have a much deeper meaning which is really cool. It is a small group of about 36 elders and we all have insights that we are willing to share. Through these insights we learn a lot and the spirit grows like crazy.

 It's really interesting, I do miss home but it's not a home sick feeling, the reason I think it is like this is because I know what I am doing is important. Because I know that the people in Uganda, where I will be going after leaving the MTC, will be needing me to be focused because they need the gospel. There are a few people in the MTC with me that are from uganda they talk about how much the people there need the Gospel and how much they appreciate it. They are all very humble and ready people. I believe that the lord has really prepared this people for the gospel. They have had many trials and tribulations which must be hard but i know the gospel will make the difference for them. I really love you guys and I miss you.

 I'm sorry to cut this letter short but we are only allowed 30 mins before the computer cuts us off. So I have to go. I fly out not this upcoming Wednesday but the Wednesday after that so like the 15 or 16 or something.

I love you guys
 Love,
 Steve
(Elder Bitter)


South Africa MTC

Friday, December 28, 2012

Traveling

Hey we made it! After 30 hours of flying, we are finally at the MTC. We were told to keep this email very short so that's about all I can say. I tried to call you at the lay over but you never picked up but I got a hold of mom in the end. I guess I will have another chance to email you later. But it's time to get going.

Love ya, 

Steve 
(Elder Bitter)


Last pic with my big sis 

 The tearful one and me



Oh Anne
The fade away shot

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

My Mission Call

September 11, 2012

Dear Elder Bitter:

You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the Uganda Kampala Mission. It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 24 months. 

You should report to the South Africa Missionary Training Center on Thursday, December 27, 2012. You will prepare to preach the gospel in the English language. Your assignment may be modified according to the needs of the mission president. 

....

Sincerely,
Thomas S. Monson
President

video




Farewell

This Sunday is Steven Bitter's Mission Farewell. He will then be set apart as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints on Wednesday Dec. 26th. He will then hop on a plane for a 32 hour flight, including lay-overs he will then arrive on the 28th, to the South Africa MTC where he will stay for two weeks. After that, he will serve the Lord and the people of the Kampala, Uganda mission for two years.