Hello from the MTC! It's been another awesome week!! THANK YOU THANK YOU to everyone who sent me letters and packages and “dear elders” with your favorite scriptures. You guys are the best. Mail time is seriously the most exciting part of the day! It's so fun to hear from all of you! To those of you who wrote me letters and emails, if I don't send you a reply email, I will be writing you a handwritten letter today! Keep 'em coming! I feel the love so much from everyone in mail and prayers-Thank you! Happy almost birthdays to my cousins Emma and Lauren! If you could, it would be great if you could send a dear elder to one of the sisters in my district. Her family is from New Zealand, so she hardly ever gets mail, which is a sad, sad thing in the life of a missionary. Her address is the same as mine- just put "Sister Ora Keung" in place of my name. It doesn't have to be long, just tell her she's awesome.
God is going to show me his arm and his grace BECAUSE I can't speak Chinese, not in spite of it. Another reason I think I've been called to a Chinese-speaking mission is because it forces me to teach simply. If I were teaching in English, I would make things way too complicated. Since I have to look up about 70% of the words we want to use in a lesson, and since our investigators have no knowledge of God, we have to teach very simply.
Okay, so lots of people have been asking about my Chinese name, Mu Jiemei. My surname is Mu. The coordinator of the Mandarin speaking missionaries picks out everyone's surnames by looking at their English last names and finding a Chinese surname that is similar. So, Murri becomes Mu. Mu means "trees", I think. Jiemei is the way to say "Sister" (often abbreviated JM). Mu Jiemei= Sis Murri. We will get Chinese first and middle names from our teachers right before we leave the MTC and go to Taiwan.
I have come up with two mottos for my mission this week. The first is "quiet dignity". I think that phrase is from the Missionary Handbook. I want people to know who I represent before I even speak. My other motto is "Wo shi kuaile" (I am happiness). Normally in Chinese when you say a noun shi (is) an adjective, you must put "de" at the end, or else you are saying that the noun literally embodies the adjective. But that's exactly what I want! I am a missionary! I have the greatest message in the world! I am happiness!
The language is coming along pretty well. I am trying really hard to learn and memorize. I still have a lot to learn, but there are some things that are starting to become automatic. It's like snow- at first it doesn't seem like it's sticking, but you look back and notice that it really is accumulating.
I would give up pretty much everything to keep doing this work forever. It is the greatest work, because it is the work of God. I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!! I (mostly) LOVE CHINESE!
Mu Jiemei/ Sis Murri