Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Week one with Sorella Pickett

My new companion is Sorella Pickett from Eugene, Oregon. She is starting her 8th transfer and has spent her whole mission in Sicily, so Rome is a big change! She is great, she is sweet and bright and will be a great companion.

This is my first time teaching a city to someone else in the mission and it has been a crazy week! I was surprised at how stressed out I felt, knowing that the weight of everyone we have been working with was now on me because Sorella Pickett doesnt know anyone. And there are a lot of investigators, members, and less actives to keep track of! Anyways, I felt an enormous amount of responsibility for them and went from making some phone calls every once in a while to making all the phone calls and making all the plans for what we would do each day. Phew! With this change, I have also seen that I have been blessed with a greater capacity to fulfill my responsibility. I am able to make all these phone calls in Italian, I am able to (for the most part) keep track of everyone and what we need to do for them, I am able to keep a conversation going and direct a lesson and lead us around this giant city of Rome (our area covers a large part and we travel sometimes 2 hours to visit people). I am particularly grateful for the example of my last companion who showed me to gain the trust of the people, even though I could never do it as well as she can!

Fun things from this week. We had a bunch of investigators in church on Sunday, including three hard-core evangelists, Ramona, Yonika, and Franca. It was probably the highlight of my week and one of the more hilarious parts of my mission. We met them on the street three months ago and they invited us to one of their baptisms and then came with us to a stake activity but have been really busy in the last few months. But anyways, they all came to church on Sunday, and they are all way intense and way into it! Our Relief Society lesson was on the gifts of the Spirit and Franca turns to me in the middle of the lesson and asks me, "What gift do you have?" Uh.... I dont know? She told me it was very important to recognize my gifts. At the beginning of Sacrament Meeting, Ramona and Franca were arguing (both very opinionated people) and in the middle of it, Franca turned to me and asked, "Well, what do you think? Is salvation a personal thing or not?" Uh....

In Sunday school, they started arguing with one of the members, haha, but it turned out okay. Overall, everyone was really nice to them and introduced themselves, which is a tremendous help to missionaries. I LOVE Rome 2 for that reason, we have some spectacular members in this ward and it makes missionary work a thousand times easier when we have the support of our members. I can't imagine leaving Rome and bringing investigators to church where people arent as friendly. I am lucky to be here! Anyways, I felt giddy having my three evangelical friends in church with me. Franca and I talked for a little while after, she is just great. She may be opinionated but these three don't come to argue, they come out of geniune curiosity and they are wonderfully nice to me and my companion. They all claim to be busy again but said they will come to the ward Christmas party!

Other good moments with meeting with the ward mission leader and his wife and talking about missionary work. They are incredibly bright and talented people, wow. If only I could live up to all they expect from us!

We brought the entire Duran (member family) family to the Cruz's (part member family) house and it went so well! I think they are a great example to Carlos and will hopefully help him more than we can in his journey to building a testimony.

We have also had good luck contacting people on buses and trains this week, we have meet some wonderful potentials. May still be my favorite part of missionary work!

Today for P-day we toured the Colosseum, the Palatine hill and the Roman forum (a huge area of ancient Roman ruins), and the Vittorio Emmanuele building. Lots of walking!

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