June 1, 2015
Hi Family :)
I did have a really great birthday! People made my birthday very special :) Did you get my birthday video? So, this week has been kind of a whirlwind. I’ve been moved around from companion to companion and area to area. My trainee had some visa problems, so she had to be delayed for a few weeks or maybe days... no one really knows. But until then, I found myself back in Baganuur with Sister Petersen. It’s been lots of fun!
Sorry, I don’t have a lot of time to write you! But I hope you enjoyed the pictures :) I love you so much family! Have a good day :)
What a cool letter I just got! Mom, Mongolia is the best! I can’t believe I only have 6 more months here... how am I going to leave this place??
On Mon, Jun 1, 2015 at 6:23 AM, Abby Bates wrote:
Hi Sis. Royal!
Yes, it's ok to be confused. You don't actually know an Abby (well, maybe you do! But I'm a different Abby ;) ). I met you and your companion briefly with the BYU wind symphony a couple weeks ago while we were touring Asia. Once back in America, I was on "Prepared to Serve" for the Ulaanbaatar Mongolia mission, and I came across your blog! I recognized you from the ward we had the fireside in, and decided to send you a quick hello!
Truth is - I am amazed by the missionaries in Mongolia! I honestly don't know how you do any of it: live in the cold, eat the food, and learn the language.... Let's just say, I had the experience of my life going to the members homes that Sunday, and it made me have great respect for the missionaries serving there. As I prepare for my mission in Michigan, I am certain I will think of you all often, and remember that halfway across the world are missionaries in Mongolia who are having a colder winter than I am, and yet being just as dedicated to the work. A particular memory that many band members shared from our fireside in Mongolia actually included you! It was as we sang "Go Ye Now in Peace", many band members (including myself) noticed, and were touched as you mouthed the words to the piece, and tears were brought to your eyes. What a wonderful experience for us all to share! Thank you for your service and humility to share your feelings of the Savior's atonement with us in that little way.
After touring a week in Mongolia, we spent a week in South Korea and a week in Japan. On the bus ride home from the SLC airport to BYU, we were all talking, and unanimously decided that Mongolia was our favorite of the countries we visited. The members were so gracious, humble, loving, and giving. We were all brought to tears when we climbed the 600+ stairs to look over the city of Ulaanbaatar on our last day, and the LDS choir from Mongolia surprised us by meeting up there to sing "High On the Mountain Top" and "God Be With You Till We Meet Again". You missionaries are teaching, seriously, some of the best members of the Church in the world. I'm convinced. :)
Thank you for your service. Thank your companion too (who I talked to briefly, and definitely can't remember her name....) Please, tell the members that the BYU wind symphony miss and love them. You are so blessed to be serving in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia!! :)
Thank you so much for the letter! It was such a special surprise! I am So happy that you guys all enjoyed your trip to Mongolia! We really enjoyed having you here! You are so right; Mongolia is such a special place. I am totally convinced that I am being helped and blessed by the people here more that I could ever help them. I remember talking to you just for a little after the fireside! I wish you all the best of luck with your mission. Let me just tell you, missions are really hard. But they are also the most special, happiest, blessed times of our lives. So take it all in :)
Thank you again for the email. Tell everyone I say Hi and thanks for the beautiful music you provided us in Mongolia :)
1) My birthday breakfast made By my temporary companion, Sister Bolor.
2) My yummy birthday pizza :)
4) So, our plans changed a little bit... haha mine and Sister Petersen’s trainees have some visa problems and haven’t come yet... so her and I are back together and back in Baganuur for what could be 1 week or 6 weeks... we are kind of in limbo right now.
Anyways, those horses were right out of window when we woke up. I love the countryside :)
5) More birthday festivities.
Although sister Petersen and I didn’t get to be together for my birthday, we were together for our year mark. That was fun :) We get a bag of peanut M&Ms to celebrate