Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Tender Mercies June 26, 2013

Ciao tutti!!

Another week has flown by here at the MTC! It´s so weird because everyday is pretty much the same and therefore I lose track of what day is what really easily, but everyday is great so I love it! I love learning Italian and I'm practicing it all the time. I love singing hymns in Italian, but it's really hard to pronounce all the words while singing. I know it will come with time. Speaking of hymns, we learned the Inno Italiano della Missione Milano (our mission's song!). It was written by some members in Italy a few years ago and I absolutely love it!!! It talks about how if we serve the Lord with all of our heart and we are faithful, the gospel will blossom in Italy! From Milano to Torino to Padova, it doesn't matter where we are as long as we are faithful and give the Lord all of our heart, Zion will rise in Italy. The lyrics and music are so beautiful and it's always stuck in my head. I already have it memorized. I also have the missionary's purpose, the baptisimal invite, and the First Vision all memorized in Italian. Every night our district meets in our room and we sing the mission hymn and then recite the things I just previously mentioned.

This week at the MTC has been crazy. All 173 new mission presidents have been here so the main building on campus has been completely closed off. It's kinda inconvient, but its for a good cause. We actually got to meet our new mission president and his wife, President and Sister Dibb. They are awesome!!!! I love them so much already. They are super nice, and funny. I told him "hi" from Brother Lemmon and he says "ciao!" back. A bit of sad news, we found out that there is no way we will be able to go to the Rome temple while we are on our mission. I was expecting that, but it's still sad. I guess we will have to go there when you come pick me up! And speaking of that, I know it's super early, but my mission is technically done on May 27th, so I don't know how picking me up is going to work, but we have a lot of time to figure that out. Today, a bunch of Anziani and Sorelle went to the Salt Lake consulate to work out visa things. It turns out that since I went through the LA consulate, my visa is already ready to go! So in a little less than 4 weeks, I'm going to be in Italy!!!! I'm so excited to go, I can't wait.

I don't remember what I told you about my investigator last week, but we committed him to baptism on July 3rd! He was a teacher the whole time and now we're done teaching him, but it was really exciting when he said yes. Now Anziano Erickson and I have two more investigators (also teachers). Their names are Sebastian and Daniel. We haven't taught Sebastian yet, but we taught Daniel for the first time yesterday. It was a lot harder than the first investigaor. The language barrier was more of a issue, but I know when I bore my testimony, he felt the spirit. I'm excited to teach Sebastian, and even though we haven't taught him yet, I already love him and Daniel. If nothing else, the MTC has really showed me how to love people.

The broadcast on Sunday was crazy!!  The spirit was so strong and I really hope the members in Italy paid attention, because I am going to try and use every last person to help us. After the broadcast, I saw Elder and Sister Hamilton and Brooke. I said hi to them and I was so happy to see them. Then as my collega and I were leaving, we ran into the Gardiners! That was so insane! I was not expecting to see them. It made my day. I got to talk to them for 15 minutes or so and took some pictures. Sister Gardiner put it the best, the Lord gives us these tender mercies to help us along.

Life here is tough. Its a lot of studying and my brain is always fried, but its always worth it. I love it here, but I'm ready to go to Italy. I know the Lord needs me there and I can't wait to go serve and love the people of Italia. I'm so glad to hear that all is well back home. I'm jealous that you all get to go to visit Erin and Dan, and I'm REALLY JEALOUS of the garden. The food here, especially the fruits and vegitables, are terrible!! I'm eating everything, but I miss real food. Another reason I'm so excited to go to Italy.

I've been writing in my journal every night and I have definitely seen the blessings of it in my life. And speaking of blessings, the Lord has protected me this past week. A nasty 24 hour flu has been going through the MTC and I've been spared. Our district leader got sick Sunday morning, so I gave him a blessing, which was so incredibly powerful. He was fine in a few hours, which was as Dad says "just another daily miracle". Also because he was sick, I got to fill in as District Leader, which was awesome!!!  I can't think of anything I need right now Mom, so just send me stuff! Sorry about the pictures last week. I couldn't figure out what pictures were what. And it seems the computer is being lame again, so I will try and send you pictures. If not, definitely next week.

I want to give a shout out to the people who wrote me this week: Camille Kingsbury, Erin, Lizzy, and my favorite BYU women's volleyball player Sam Staker! I loved all of your messages and I will write you soon if I haven't already. I love you all and I wish you the best!

Con affetto,
Anziano Langlois

Also, I forgot to tell you about the devotional we had last night. Janice Kapp Perry came and spoke/sang to us. She had the entire MTC sing a medley of her primary songs and the spirit was so incredibly strong. I have such a strong testimony of how fast singing a hymn can bring the spirit. We ended by singing her EFY medley of Sisters in Zion/Nephi's Courage, but she had changed some of the words and I can't tell you how powerful that was. What an amazing devotional and an amazing end to the day. I love you all and will talk to you soon!
Anziano Langlois

 I found a way to send the pictures!!!! 

 Here are some pictures of my district,

...and some friends from BYU. I hope you enjoy them!


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Me place parlare Italiano! June 19, 2013

Ciao Famiglia!!!
As you might have figured out by the power of deduction, today is finally my P-day!!! Yes, we survived a whole week without a P-day. It was long, but I'm glad its finally here. I'm so glad to hear that all is well back home. I'm so incredibly excited to hear that the US beat Honduras and qualified for the World Cup, but I'm even more excited that I've got Dad hooked on soccer!!! I miss watching it so much! I'm so glad to hear that Lizzy's birthday party went well and I want her to know that I was thinking about her on her birthday. But back to the stuff you actually want to hear about.
First week over and I love it here! The first day we were thrown into a classroom with two teachers who didn't speak a single word of English, only Italian. So it was basically sink or swim. Luckily, I caught on pretty fast and understand a pretty decent amount. I met my companion, Anziano Erickson from Puyallup Washington, and we instantly hit it off. He is really nice, smart, and a lot of fun to be around. We work great together! Right now, we are on fire! We are picking up Italian really fast. The third day, we had our first lesson with our investigator Luca. I love Luca!! He is so awesome, and he has such a great spirit about him. He is a pretty easy investigator because he has a really strong desire to follow Christ, but he only speak Italian, so that is pretty difficult. Our first lesson was suppose to be 15 minutes, but Anziano Erickson and I kinda taught him for 45 minutes...whoops. I was really nervous at first, but as soon as we started teaching him, I felt the Spirit so strongly and all of my fears were replaced with love for him. We taught him about the Restoration and when he read the First Vision, the Spirit was so strong. I could feel it, my collega (companion) could feel it, and Luca could feel it. The power of the Spirit is real. I have a firm testimony of that. During our first lesson, I found myself turning away from my notes to ask Luca questions that I didn't even know I could. I closed the lesson by bearing my testimony like I never had before. I only knew how to say a few things, but the Spirit ampliflied my words. I know that Heavenly Father really blesses his missionaries. Without the gift of the Spirit, I would not be speaking Italian as well as I do now.
To Dad's enjoyment, we all practice SYL (Speak Your Language) here at the MTC. We always try to speak Italian as much as possible, which was really hard the first few days because all we could really say was "Ciao!", "Buon Giorno!", "Grazie!", and "Prego!". I've noticed that if I take the time to think through what I'm going to say, I can usually say it in Italian, at which the rest of my District says is...."Che cosa?" (What?). I'm really doing well with Italian. One of my teachers, Fratello Jeter, told me in an interview that he is really impressed with how well I was speaking and understanding, and that was last Friday!! A few days ago, we were practicing trying to pass out pamphlets (opuscoli) in Italian, and after we were done practicing, our other teacher Sorella Turley told the class to watch me as an exampe and I tried to give Fratello Jeter a pamphlet about the Restoration. I was caught really off guard, but I just went for it and after both Fratello Jeter and Sorella Turley were really impressed with how well I spoke!
My district has 10 missionaries in it, who are all going to Milano. Otto Anziani e due Sorelle (8 Elders and 2 Sisters). Our Sorelle, Sorella Carter and Sorella Smart, both took two semesters of Italian in college, so they both speak really well. Our district as a whole was a little slow at the beginning, but they all have been picking up Italian really fast. I firmly believe that whom the Lord calls, he qualifies. Everyday we have time to study Italian by ourselves and so we spend that time helping each other learn and grow. It is so amazing. I love my District.
We have about 70 missionaries in our branch; about 30 going to Milano, about 30 going to Roma, and about 10 going to Romania. I love our branch. We all have such a sense of brotherhood with each other. Whenever we see each other, we always yell "Ciao Anziani!!!!". We have so much fun together, as we all try and learn Italian, and how to preach the Lord's gospel. Every gym time we all go play soccer and we have the best time. Because we are all struggling with the same things, we all have such a love for each other and we will always go to each other's aid.
Back to Luca. So Anziano Erickson and I have taught him at least 7 times since we've been here and we just love it. We now know enough Italian to be able to communicate our thoughts without notes, which is amazing because then we can really connect with him. He is so nice, everytime we don't know how to say something he always tells us that we don't need to worry about it, because our Italian is great! After the 3rd or 4th lesson, the Spirit prompted me to invite him to be baptized, so I did. he say there and thought about it for a minute or so before accepting. We were so excited and we couldn't stop smiling! He is getting baptized on July 3rd. Now, even though he's not a real investigator (he's a teacher), we still have such a love for him and we feel such joy when he comes closer to Christ.
Every night, our District meets in our room to sing an Inno (hymn) and then we recite our purpose as missionaries from memory in Italian. Nostro scopo e: Invitare le persone a venire a Cristo aiutandole ad accetare il vangelo restaurato mediante la fede in Gesu Cristo e la Sua l'Espiazione, il pentimento, il battesimo, il conferimento del dono dello Spirito Santo e peseverando sino alla fine.
I apologize for any spelling or gramatical errors, its starting to get hard to write and speak in English. Also, I never say the word "yes" anymore. It's always "si". I will be talking to someone in English and then I will just say "si" when I would normally say "yes". I've seen practically my whole ward here so far. I run into Elder Wirkus a lot which is so awesome. I love talking to him and I miss being with him all the time. His Portugese is great, at least as far as I can tell. I love when I see my old friends and we can share our love of the Lord and the language that we speak; whether its Italian, Spanish, English, French, Mandarin, or Portugese. I said this before, but the Lord blesses his missionaries.
I just want to close by briefly bearing my testimony in Italian:
Io so che questa chiesa e vera. Io so que Gesu Cristo e mio Salvatore. Testimonio que Lui vive. Io so che possiamo venire a Cristo mediante insegnare sua parole. Lui amo e so che ci ama tutti le persone. Io so che lo dono dello Spirito Santo e reale and mediante lo, possiamo benedire le vite di persone. Nel nome di Gesu Cristo, amen.
I tried to attach some pictures of our District, me and my companion, and some friends from BYU. I hope you enjoy them, and I hope they are the right ones. It's hard to tell on this computer. I will figure it out and send better ones next week. Also, we kinda have a competition in our District going on, so if you all could write me a Dear Elder letter every few days, that would be awesome. I love you all and can't wait to hear back from you!
Anziano Langlois
P.S. 800+ missionaries came into the MTC with me last week
P.P.S. One of the members of our Branch Presidency's wife is from Roma, and whenever she talks to us, she reminds me of Sylvia. I love it.

Anziano (Elder) Langlois and companion Anziano Erickson

Thursday, June 13, 2013

...and He's Off!

Yesterday, June 12, 2013 Elder Eric Langlois began his journey as a full time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  He will be in the Mission Training Center (MTC) in Provo, UT for about 6 six weeks to be trained and learn Italian.  We know that Elder Langlois will be a great missionary!

 Joe and Eric flew to Salt Lake City, UT where they were met by his brother Jason.

 Brunch with Kim, Tim and Uncle Josh. (Sorry Josh, I guessed you missed the picture.)

 Melissa and McKay  came to say goodbye.

 Stacie and Lauren (via) phone.

 Cousin Brittney stopped by too.  
Thanks to everyone for all the support.

...and off he goes!

Monday, June 10, 2013


Hey everyone,

This is me saying goodbye to everyone! Tomorrow afternoon I am flying to the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah for the next six weeks to learn Italian. I'm so excited to go and can't believe that it's already here. I still remember when I first opened my mission call and I was so excited that I had to go reread it to make sure it said Milan Italy! Back then it seemed like this day would never come, but now it has. I've given my farewell, I've said goodbye to all of my friends, and tonight I'm getting set apart as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. As the world seems to flash on by me, I am oddly calm. I know I'm ready to go and serve the Lord for two years and I couldn't be more excited to just get out there and teach! I know I still have a lot to learn, but all the Lord asks for is a heart willing to serve and that's exactly how I feel right now. I am so ready to go and serve the people of Italy, to laugh with them, to struggle with them, and to help them grow closer to their savior. I know that this is what I'm suppose to be doing. I know that the Lord needs me in northern Italy and no one else could do the work that He has been preparing me my whole life to do. I know that this is the Lord's church on this Earth and that Jesus Christ is my savior and redeemer. I am so grateful for this gospel and the blessing that it is in my life. I am grateful for all the amazing people that I have met in my life, you all have had a profound influence on me and I will miss you all. I will see you all in two years. May God be with you till we meet again.