Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Buon Giorno!‏

Dear Family,

Ciao! Thanks for the awesome emails! It was really nice hearing from you all!

Things are great here in Europe! The weather on Sardegna can't decide whether it wants to stay hot or get cold but it's really nice! I'm looking forward to winter! We have been all over Sardegna this week and I'm pretty sure we've hit every major city. I've been exhausted! 

First, a little update on the investigators. The Tache's had a great blessing in their lives recently. Ionel found a full time job! It's a great job too and I think he works on boats or something like that. They are saving up so that they can buy a house to stay. It is starting to get very cold at night so this is a huge blessing. Iona has been finding a bit of work cleaning a lady's house so things are looking good for them! The only problem is that it looks like they can't get baptized unless they separate. So we'll see what happens. There are a few part member families that we are really working with to get their non member family members close to the gospel. We started teaching this one man who has a testimony of the church and most of all of the Book of Mormon. The only problem is he doesn't want to give up smoking to get baptized. It was really funny as he was telling us how mad he was at Emma Smith for the whole tobacco thing! He really doesn't like her. Another member who has a husband who is not a member set something up so that we could do a family home evening at her house. Her husband is slowly getting closer to the church as he is coming to more and more activities. We'll see! We also had a less active member come to the district conference with his family and he has been making a lot of progress. Other than that we are really trying hard to find new investigators. Our goal is two new ones each week as the standards of excellence. We really want to fill our time with teaching rather than finding, and we've been doing a ton of finding lately. But it's all fun!

Thursday was Anziano Vitali's birthday. The Anziani in Oristano have a baptismal date and they are both the zone leader and district leader so Anziano Vitali who is the other district leader had to do the baptismal interview. We drove all the way to Oristano, and then after the interview we went to McDonald's to celebrate his birthday. The young man that they baptized is so awesome! He is named Francesco and he is definitely one of the elect. He wants to serve a mission and it has been a lot of fun speaking with him at the conferences. It looks like the rest of his family might get baptized too! Miracle island of Sardegna!

On Saturday the Anziani from Sassari came into Olbia by bus and we drove to Cagliari. It was my turn to drive and I got stuck with the longest journey we had, but it's all good, I love seeing the beautiful Sard countryside! We made it to Cagliari and we went straight to the church building where the first session of district conference was to be held. President and Sister Kelly were already there, so it was fun to finally see them again! Conference was awesome. I sat next to this recent convert named Walter and it was fun speaking with him after the conference. Fratello Moro is another member that I really love from Sassari. I showed him my photo album and he loves our family! I need to take a picture with him and send it to you guys. He's got the deepest voice ever and it's so funny when he messes with the Sassari Anziani.  Anyways, right after the conference we had a Priesthood meeting where Alessio gave an awesome training. President Kelly (who is excellent at Italian) gave talks at every session of conference. 

It was fun being with all the Anziani at the Cagliari apartment. Anziano Green was transferred out and Anziano Longhurst who was a friend of mine in the MTC from the older zone was transferred in. We had a lot of fun catching up and he was telling me all about his first two transfers in Sicily. He saw some crazy things! I also talked to Anziano Larsen who is our zone leader and he only has two transfers left. He really gave me good tips on improving the language.

On Sunday we had one more session and then a lunch with the members. During the lunch President pulled me aside for my interview! It went good and from his hints I think I'll be on Sardegna for awhile! But who knows, people say that he is unpredictable! After that we finally had our zone conference and it was great. President really inspired us to work hard to find investigators. It had to be cut a little short because President and Sister Kelly had to catch their plane back to Rome. It was a great conference altogether, and I love being in Cagliari! Maybe I'll get to serve there!

That night we said goodbye and went to Sassari. We stayed the night there and decided to do splits and have both companionships work there. I was with Anziano Harris, and we did a lot of house work. I did have a really cool experience though, both with listening to the promptings of the Spirit, and with the Gift of Tongues. We were walking to go hit up another Palazzo when I saw to our right three mothers and their children. I felt like I should go talk to them. I told Anziano Harris and we walked over there. Two of the ladies rolled their eyes, but I walked up to them and said, "My name is Anziano Lacey, me and my companion are sharing a message for the family and how we can live together forever." While the ladies ignored me one was really interested. We talked for a while and we went over the Plan of Salvation pamphlet. She said she liked it all, but she had doubts. I told her that all doubt could be taken away through faith. She liked what I said a lot, and said that she wanted to come to church to see what it was like. It was an awesome experience! And a cool part was Anziano Harris didn't have to help me with the language at all! Too bad she's in Sassari... Just kidding!

I had a few more interesting experiences in Sassari. One young lady we stopped said that I looked like Leonardo DiCaprio... but more beautiful. I was like... Thanks..? It was funny, and a nice compliment, I'm not going to lie! Another time we were on a bus and this teen aged girl kept touching my leg! Weird stuff!

The past couple of days haven't been too exciting besides English course. I tried to introduce the Gospel to Giovanni... But I'm afraid I offended him a little because he is Buddhist and doesn't believe in Christ at all. I had no idea and I hope he comes back. At least I tried...

Other than that we are really trying to find new investigators. It's hard, but with a little prayer and hard work, it's definitely possible! Things are going good, and I appreciate all your prayers and support. I love you all so much! I love you Dad, I love you Mom, I love you Morgan, I love you Brooke, I love you Heather, and I love you Greg. Vi voglio bene!!!!

Anziano Clay Lacey

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