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November 9, 2011
Still at the MTC
I half expected to get above Bankok then have to turn around, but we never made it out of the MTC. Two and a half hours before heading out we talked with President Harris (district presidency) and found out we weren't going. He told us to see if the referral center could use us. We've talked with the missionaries there before, they are super nice. So we went and talked with them, but they needed their mission president's aproval - the MTC president. So we went and talked with President Brown (who is currently our mission president). He said we wouldn't be effective in the referral center, to talk with President Harris again and possibly see if President McIff (his counselor) had some humanitarian work for us to do. On our way out we ran into President Hacking (we worked with him when we first got delayed, and have continued to talk with him), we informed him about our brand new news, he had the idea that we could just spend our time in the temple. So with his recommendation, we talked with President Harris, and got his approval as well. Our branch president has a rule that we can't eat at the temple cafeteria (everyone else can, though) so we got permission from President Hacking.
Because we had started to adjust for the time difference, we took a nap. Some of the younger Thai missionaries came and tolds us that we had class, so we confusedly got up, ate dinner (where we talked to the referral center missionaries and told them the news), and went to class. I was a bit irritated, as I knew we didn't have classes anymore. To make matters worse, the teacher told us we would be having class. Now, classes have been good, but after a couple weeks of made up curriculum, and having just been roused out of bed, I don't want anything to do with it. We told him we didn't have class anymore, but he insisted that we did, and that it came from eccesiastical. Having just been talking with the highest ecclesiastical authorities here, I wasn't believing him, and explained why. And then he said that we should show up to class anyways. As if. You'd have to physically carry me off if that is how you want to treat me. Sometimes it feels like people assume that they can make descisions for us here, that we are just to be empty heads to pour information into. As far as that is in class, and is mission related, that is true. Anything outside of that, and I'll make my own desicions, thank you very much. Fortuantely, Brother Chiu swapped in, and we talked with him.
Today we ate at the temple, did all the ordinances in order, ate a late lunch/early breakfast, and then helped out in the laundry. People were confused that us Elders are Sister Knutson's companions. It's fun being an exception. It was a really awesome day. The food was wonderful, but best was that it was very peaceful, calm, comfortable. We got plenty of time to study the scriptures, as well as performing ordinances. I loved it.
When we came back, we talked with President Hacking (President Harris was at HQ in Salt Lake), he thought our day was wonderful. It looks like tomorrow afternoon we'll get a temporary re-assignment. Basically we get a mission call just like our first call, from the Brotheren, except we leave that mission (most likely English speaking, state-side) once we can go to Thailand. We'll spend tomorrow at the temple as well. We told him about our clash with Training about having class. He seemed a bit confused about the whole "this comes from ecclesiastical" part, and was going to look into who that was. I suspect someone was taking on some extra authority. I feel like that is a common problem within leadership here. I'm weary of authority, because a lot of times people don't lead and just use authority alone. Fortunately, we're in the hands of the district presidents, who are just wonderful. I love working with them.
Everyone keeps on being sorry for us. We are just fine, we know we're in the hands of good leaders and the LORD. It was a dissapointment, but we aren't down, sad, or anything else. We just are in for the ride, God's the driver. I feel that we have to comfort everyone, they feel sorry for us. We also inspire missionaries who are tired of being here, just by being so happy and content, having been in the MTC for a long time. If they ask how long we've been here they are shocked. If they ask when we leave, we can say two weeks ago, yesterday, and hopefully later this week. Either way, we explain our crazy situation. In the long run it's just a small bump. It wasn't even much of a surprise. I honestly wouldn't have thought we had made in until the plane landed in Bangkok.
We are doing just great. Our new schedule (Temple and study as much as we want) is like a beautiful dream. We're excited to get our second mission calls tomorrow. I'm not sure if I'll have another oportunity to email, so next you hear from me could be from anywhere.
Have a great week
Elder Robert Buss
Posted by Elder Buss at 08:20