October 3, 2016
After one session of
conference, we did a split and I went to help an old lady in our apartment
complex who needed our help. She needed us to go to get her groceries. It was
an excellent lesson in patience. To be honest it was kind of a weird sight to
see Anziano Ruiz going to replace the 1.39€ wine for the .89€ wine on a Sunday
at the grocery store because she couldn't afford it. A couple times I wanted to
leave her and drop the bags off at her house so
we could be at the church in time for the conference, but I felt not to. After
we left her, we ran to the bus stop, and soon after Syv (changed name) walked up.
"Are you late to see the prophet?" he asked. After we responded
affirmatively, he replied "me too". So, we got to go with him to conference!
Which was AWESOME… like always. I encourage us to all go back like Elder
Kearon told us to and underline actions we plan to take because of this
conference. I made up my own Italian saying, "c'è chi
fa ma non sa, è chi sa ma non fa" [translated roughly as: who does but
doesn't know, and who knows but doesn't do]. Basically, I've noticed that a lot
of excellent disciples are pretty new to the church and sometimes uneducated,
but they live the gospel 24/7. Sometimes there are others who know it all, but
don't follow through with the basic stuff. So let's do it! We were so happy
that Clytus, our less active new convert, came. I've really tried to take him under my wing
(no one else even knows his correct name).
Yesterday everyone was telling "Clever" to get in the picture)
but with my love for Africans it was easy to want to work with him. He heard
two Book of Mormon talks that gave him a wake-up punch.
Rose is taking a break right now. But pray for
us tonight with Diego, our first referral here! We were so excited, that isn't
very common. I went on a scambio with my old friend Anziano Vrska. I was so
happy to hear how my favorite unit in the mission is doing- Palermo 3, the
international branch. I love the priesthood service that Fratello Mannino gave
as he clearly groomed his counselors to take the reigns of the branch. He was
called to the stake presidency since I left and Joel Kefas is the new
president. I've heard rumors about them being the highest tithe-paying unit in
Italy and the stake president telling them that this branch, which was six
strong in 2014 and had over 20 active members when I was there, will be a Ward
within a year or two at its current growth rate. We also saw an awesome miracle
as we stayed to eat fufu after teaching a new convert and got to meet the
incredible land lord couple who agreed to start taking the lessons because they
love the way the missionaries act and treat our friend.
P day at Nike store. Look at the seat next to me
October 10, 2016
Well, we got transferred to
Ladispoli. I said "we" because basically Anziano Jorgenson and I got
sent to another city to be companions again. Good thing we like each other ha-ha.
Ladispoli is pretty close to Rome, normally the zone leaders buy your tickets
for transfers but they told us this time just to find our way to Ladispoli by
getting a train whenever we wanted.
Walking into the apartment was interesting. We
spent a few hours today and whatever time we could find in these past few days
to clean it up. It was pretty filthy in
addition to the straight up problems it has like how you have to turn on and
adjust the shower with a wrench, and the elevator we stopped using because it
makes you sick like it were the Hollywood tower of terror. But these are all
things you can for the most part just laugh about.
I told the assistants on Monday that the phone
would be on silent that night when we taught our referral. I wasn't kidding. I
felt the phone vibrate as they called give us out transfer calls, but we had
more important things to do with Diego who is awesome and I think will be
Ladispoli is an interesting place, it is a very
small city compared to Rome, but the missionaries have done good work here,
plus it is the home of the translation center for Italy where about 12 people
work. In other words, our ward is
STACKED. Elder Dini Ciacci, the stake president I knew in Rome, who is now an
area 70 wasn't even at church yesterday.
But there are so many other great people, including Gianni, who I used
to know as Anziano Calvagna from this mission, and Dario, who I knew in Rome 1
and is literally the most jaw-droppingly good teacher in lessons that I have
ever seen. We are really excited for the ward unity and strength and will be
working a LOT with that this transfer.
I'll let you in on our secret plans: obviously,
all of us missionaries loved the talks by Elder Andersen and Elder Oaks, but we
want to pull a little from President Uchtdorf as well. The reality is that each
member in the ward is an Amulek. We need them; we always have. But in a city of this size and with the plain
statistics of who is most likely to stay active, we really are going to be
pleading with them to
make missionary work an attitude rather than a
Cool analogy: probably my favorite part of our
house is the mirror in our study room. Why? Because the way it is positioned, I
can only see Anziano Jorgenson – and
Anziano Jorgenson can only see me. What a great model for humility and
Super exciting announcement:
WE ARE GETTING BIKES!!!
I loved our last English group with this crowd. It grew quite a bit
last transfer. I would be remiss if I didn't note how many times the
Lord has taken care of me this week, like during our last spiritual
thought where I basically just started going off on something I had
not expected to do, very much grateful for the spirit.
Ethan on his birthday.
Sorry. We received no letter from 10/17 and no explanation why.