Greetings from Idaho!
Just like that, I'm in Potato Land! But first, I'll wrap up my MTC experience first.
The Sunday before I left (Mar. 30), we had a devotional where all the missionaries in the MTC attended. As we walked in, I noticed the sign said Richard Elliott would be the speaker. The name seemed familiar, but I couldn't place it until he was introduced. It turned out that he is one of the principal organists for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir! I was ecstatic! Interspersed with telling about his conversion story and sharing a spiritual message, he performed several incredible pieces on the organ! My mouth was agape. He performed a Bach piece that had my companion leaning over to me and saying "show off" and he concluded with a pedal arrangement of "Go Tell It on the Mountain". We gave him a standing ovation. The arrangement in on the Choir's Youtube page. Look it up!
However, that wasn't all the music in store for us that evening. Recently returned missionary David Archuleta was also in attendance and he sang several hymns as well. He had served in Chile and his testimony about the change of heart he had seen many people undergo in that country was stirring. Some of you may know that he is of American Idol fame. So, it was a pretty amazing evening.
I got up at 3am on Tuesday morning with my three roommates and we traveled by train to Salt Lake City where we boarded our plane without any problems and arrived in Boise, Idaho before noon. The Mission President and his wife were waiting for us along with a couple missionaries who are called Assistants to the President. The mission president and his wife preside over the Nampa Idaho mission and are in charge of over 180 missionaries. The Assistants to the President report directly to him and help him. They do a lot of other things, which I'm not aware of, but I know it's an important responsibility.
After a lunch and orientation meeting, we were randomly paired up with missionaries who have been here for several months and went outside in the rain. We were assigned a specific area of Nampa to go and tract. Basically this means we knock on doors and talk to people about our beliefs. This method of getting to know people is not very effective (We knocked on probably 15 doors and only a handful answered), but it was instructive. We met an amazing family with their own set of beliefs, but it was inspiring to be able to hear about other people's path to the Savior. I know that we are all on our own path and as long as we are strengthening our faith in Christ, we are heading down the right one.
I will need to tell you more next week. I hope you are all doing well.