July 23, 2013
Dear Mom and Dad,
As of July 17, 2013, my name has been Cryllified: Cectpa Makpen (Sister McCrea).
I'm sorry for all the mistakes. My brain is starting to think more in Russian now. I can't even remember how to speak Spanish very well anymore. So when I get home, I'm going to be an English mess. I probably won't even remember how to speak English anymore.
Being a missionary is hard. A lot harder that I thought it would have been. But that's okay. I'm starting to realize that all the bad things that happen to us is for a reason. It's Heavenly Father allowing trials to happen to me. To help me learn patience. Patience is something I need to learn. And I know that by the time I end my mission, I'm going to be a much better person. During one of the Tuesday devotionals someone said that the mission isn't the best two years of your life. Its the best two years for your life.
I love being a missionary! It's the most fun that I have had in a long time and I know that it will be hard...but just being in Ukraine will be worth it. I know that this mission is for me. I don't know if I've share this yet but I haven't ever been or seen or spoken to any of the Ukrainian people (other than Bro. Kulokowski, one of the Russian teachers here)...and I already love them. Sister Jackson showed us a video of the festival for the Kiev, Ukraine temple (kind of like the jubilee we had for the San Antonio Temple...and I almost started crying. I choked up at least. I just can't believe how awesome my mission is going to be. I know that I've said this a bajillion times...but the Dnepropetrovsk Ukraine Mission was made for me. I was destined to go there. I've thought about all the places that I could have gone to before I go to bed sometimes. Like Hawaii or Australia would have been cool. Or some where in the UK. Or Germany. Iceland even. But they're all just cool places. And that's it. It's just cool. But it's not Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine. I can't think of anywhere else that I would like to serve a mission. There was a reason why I was so interested in learning Russian in 9th Grade. There was a reason why we lived in Laredo for as long as we did and I grew up in a branch and where I was one of the only kids at school who was LDS. I know that there is a reason that I'm so sensitive with others and know what it's like to live in a poorer society. It's because Ukraine is one of the poorer European countries. It's because there are branches there and they are all really tight knit and close with each other...just like back home. I'm being sent to Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine so I can tell kids in middle school and high school that I know what they're going through being the only kid in school who is a member. I'm going to Ukraine because I've been around and have friends who live on the poorer side of town and I don't think any less of them. I know what it's like to live in the trenches...where the Church isn't very strong and we have to drive 2 1/2 hours to go to a temple. I'm going to Ukraine because Laredo is just like it. I came to the MTC pre-trained...culturally speaking. I just came to the MTC to be trained spiritually. And languagely, of course. Sure there are times when I am scared and I wonder what I got myself into, accepting the call to go to a Russian speaking country...because I'm not kidding when I say that learning Russian is one of the hardest things I have ever done. But then I remember what I'm doing here and the fact that I get to live in a foreign country for a year and a half...and then it's all worth it. I think about how awesome it will be to live there, all the different kinds of people that I'll get to meet. All the different kinds of food that I'll get to try...and the fact that I'll be able to speak Russian. something that I've been wanting to do since 9th grade.
I know that this mission will be a blessing. I just have to put my faith in the Lord.
Sister Mariah McCrea's Contact Information:
Email - firstname.lastname@example.org
Ukraine Physical Address (For Postal Mail and Packages):
Sister Mariah Sargent McCrea
Ukraine Dnepropetrovsk Mission
Karla Marksa 27A 5th Floor
Note: If you are planning on sending a package to Sis. McCrea, please contact her mom and dad for suggestions on which carrier to use and what to do to avoid package tampering.
Elder Mitchell McCrea's Contact Information:
Brazil Physical Address (For Postal Mail and Packages):
Elder Mitchell McCrea
Brazil Belem Mission
Av. Navare, 532 Sala 412 4 Andar
Navare Royal Trade Center
Note: If you are planning on sending a package to Elder McCrea, please contact his mom and dad for suggestions on which carrier to use and what to do to avoid package tampering.