Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Ciao from Cagliari!

Hey Guys!
Well I'm writing from Cagliari now! I'm not sure how long I will have here because we are planning on going for a little "giro" around Cagliari for p-day and maybe visit a castle. Cagliari is huge compared to Olbia! I have a strong desire to serve here if I get called to any another city on the island.  It is really unlikely for a missionary to stay with his trainer for more than two transfers so if we went for a fourth that would be pretty crazy. I haven't really thought much of it but people are really surprised that Anziano Vitali and I have been together for over three transfers, because, apparently, over time problems start happening. I'm blessed to have a great companion like him that's easy to get along with and that we work well together.

Unfortunately this was a bit of an uneventful week regarding some aspects because we were both told by Sister Kelly to stay home all day Saturday and Sunday. Two days without missionary work was seriously an eternity! When Sunday night approaches and we turn in our numbers for the week it just seems like a week isn't enough! And then you only get six of them in a transfer. And only about sixteen of those in the mission. There just isn't enough time! Anyways, Anziano Vitali caught the flu and was even coughing out a little bit of blood so I told him to call Sister Kelly and she told us to stay home. We were really disappointed because we had every minute planned out on Saturday filled with lessons with investigators and less-actives. When we called to cancel they were pretty happy that we didn't come and get them sick too! I also got a little sick but not too bad and I'm currently being annoyed by a little runny nose. She said to try to avoid going to church on Sunday but we went for Sacrament meeting to greet our investigators and see how they are doing.

Speaking of investigators, I'll share the best news of the week. Wednesday night we taught Ignazio the Plan of Salvation and it went well. Since him and his wife do a companionship study often, they have covered nearly everything we have to teach to him before baptism, so our lessons are a bit of a review and really familiar. He asks good questions and really understands everything well. He is going to be such a strong member of the church. I keep saying this but I'm so honored to be a small part in his conversion experience. This whole mission for two years would undeniably be worth it just to see their family be sealed together forever in the temple. Che bella! Well,  we did a lesson with him on Friday with just us and him. We prayed hard for this lesson. The main thing we prayed about though was how and when we could set a fixed baptismal date. Through prayers and lots of thinking we decided that he can be ready by December the seventeenth.

We went over to his house, and it was such an amazing lesson. I would have to say it was the best lesson we've taught since I've been on my mission. We did a little recap on the Plan of Salvation and then started talking about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I absolutely love the thirty-first chapter of 2 Nephi when it explains so simply the "doctrine of Christ." This might be my favorite thing to teach as a missionary. I scrutinized this passage of scripture, and learned that the simple doctrines of the Gospel are definitely the most important and the topics we must focus on. Anyways, the lesson was going great and we told him that we wanted these blessing of baptism for him. We then told him that we thought about it and prayed about it and that we knew he could be ready to be baptized on the 17th of December. The Spirit was so strong in the room, and I know that everyone could feel it. It was a calm and a peaceful feeling. Ignazio gave a little smile and said that it was a bit soon, but that he wants with all his heart to be ready for that date. He then said tearfully that he was afraid that the Lord wouldn't forgive him of his past transgressions. We bore testimony of the Atonement and that he is doing everything right at this point, etc. He likes the goal and we outlined everything that he needs to do to be ready for this date. I really want him to gain a passion for reading the Book of Mormon because teaching lessons can only go so far. We know from the prophets and apostles that through working and acting we personally grow our faith in Gesù Cristo (sorry, I just started typing it in Italian and didn't feel like changing it). Anyways, the more we talk to him about it the more excited he gets and his wife says that he really feels good about the date. We are really excited! Keep praying for him to be ready and for him to feel ready himself. There is not much more progress with other investigators. We are still trying hard to progress them to baptism but not much has changed in the last week. We have been trying to find new investigators to meet our goal but haven't found much luck yet. It's okay though, we will! 

Zone conference was great! We left on Monday to head to Cagliari by train, and it was a very long train ride. We played this really popular traditional Italian card game called scopa so we had a nice time even though it was a four hour train ride. I never thought that I'd travel nearly every form of transportation while on my mission! Car, plane, boat, bus, train. Our new zone leader is Anziano Errante. He is a native Italian from a small town up north and he's only been a member for three years, and one of those years has been during his mission already. He is so awesome! I hope so bad to serve with him. He doesn't speak English so I've been speaking almost only Italian for the past few days with him. It was a blast being with all of the other Anziani and Sorelle. I'm not the youngest one on the Island anymore! Sorella Turley in Cagliari is training a greenie so I guess I'm officially not a greenie anymore!

It was so nice to see Presidente and Sorella Kelly. This zone conference was dedicated to Christmas and we celebrated together with a huge lunch. Anziano Vitali and I brought mashed potatoes and they turned out pretty good! Presidente gave an awesome training that was super spiritual but also really practical.

I finally got a new memory card for my camera and have been taking a lot of pictures of our little adventure around Cagliari for p-day so I'm excited to send pictures but I want to wait until I can go to a trusted computer that isn't infected with viruses! 

Things are going so great. I can't believe I'm one week away from my six month mark! So fast! I am glad all is well back home. Thank you all for everything you do and for your loving prayers. 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. Have a great week and stay safe! Vi amo e vi voglio benissimo! A presto!

Con affetto, 
Anziano Clay Lacey

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