Thursday, January 26, 2012

Ciao from Sassari!

Hey guys!
I'm glad Alessio told you but yes, I'm moving all the way to Sassari! I thought it was a joke at first but nope! Not going to lie, at first I was a little worried because of how close it is and I was looking forward to an experience completely new and different, but now I'm really excited for it.
Well I'm officially all moved in to Sassari! I love the apartment! I think the thing I love the most about it though is the shower. I know that it completely random, but it has a sweet high-tech shower with water massages in it. Che bella! Anyways, the craziness of packing and moving is done, and I am finally settled in!
I want to share a cool feeling. As I exited the train with my luggage this morning, I really felt the mantle fall on me that this is wear the Lord wants me, and that I have a responsibility here at this time. In the missionary handbook it says, "You represent the Lord in this area and are responsible for obtaining His direction in carrying out your assignment and blessing the people there". These words came into my mind and I really felt that this inspired call from president is true. It's hard to explain in words, but I hope you can get what I'm trying to express!
Moving back in time a little bit, this week was busy with us getting ready for the baptism of Ignazio. It was a bit stressful at first because we came back so late from Cagliari, but we managed to set up the portable font, and make sure that it worked. Ignazio was so cool throughout the whole time leading up to his baptism. When we set the first date he seemed a little scarred and worried, but this week he was calm and tranquil. On Saturday, the day of the baptism, we got everything ready, and people started to show up.
On a side story we have kind of dropped a long time investigator. He doesn't want anything to do with the church anymore, and hasn't made any progress, unlike his wife. Well when they showed up, he was drunk. He was acting really weird, and I was worried that he was going to do something at this baptism which is supposed to be a very spiritual experience. I prayed hard that Heavenly Father would help us find a way to either get him out of there, or find some other solution. Ten minutes before the baptismal service started, we decided to take him on a little walk to help him sober up without offending him in some way. As we circled back to the church the cool air helped him get his senses back, and we were all good. He was good and nice and quiet the whole time so my prayer was answered.
Another prayer was answered that night too. We invited someone to the baptism service, and I prayed with all my heart that he would come and see. When he showed up I was relieved with happiness, and I was so grateful to the Lord. (He reads this blog so he knows who he is!)
Finally, my prayer for this baptismal service to go well was answered. There was such a strong Spirit there, invited by Ignazio's mother in law, Sorella Urtis (first member in Olbia baptized) and I can feel that every heart there was touched. I had the opportunity to be a witness of the baptism. Fratello Murgia said the baptismal prayer with power, and it was truly amazing to see Ignazio exit the water washed from sins. The Lord put me here in Olbia to see that moment!
After us as missionaries taught a lesson on finding happiness, Ignazio and Fratello Murgia came in and Sorella Mazzone bore her testimony. She used to think that Ignazio would never enter the gospel, and that this was one of the most beautiful moments in her life. I really felt power when Ignazio stood up to bear his testimony. From when I first met him to when I saw him at that moment, I know that the conversion power and process is real. He used the word of how he is "embracing" the gospel and the scriptures and talked about how much this has helped him be closer to his wife, and then he started crying and talked about how much closer he is with his young daughter. He also personally thanked us as missionaries for teaching him. Not going to lie, I was in tears! When talking about it later Iona said that he was definitely speaking with the power of the Holy Ghost. Indeed he was.
After the baptism we all went back to the Mazzone's house for pizza where we recieved our transfer calls. They were sad that I was to go, but happy that I would still be so close. Fratello Murgia and his wife frm Sassari were happy though! It was funny because before the baptism his wife was joking around that she hopes me or Anziano Vitali will come to Sassari. I got the lucky straw! I'm excited to work with Fratello Murgia as he's the ward mission leader here in Sassari.
On Sunday I was scared to death to give him the blessing and to add on top of that, president decided that since I was to give him the Holy Ghost that it would be a good idea to give me a speaking assignment for fifteen minutes on that topic one day in advance! I was nervous. The blessing went good though. It wasn't absolutely perfect Italian, but It was just what Ignazio needed and I really felt the Spirit working through me.
After all of this spiritual hype, saying goodbye to everyone wasn't fun at all. You know me, I get attached easily, and goodbye's aren't the easiest for me. It wasn't a "forever" goodbye though because I have the chance to do some splits there in Olbia still! I love the people of Olbia, Italia with all my heart!
Well I'm here in Sassari! As Anziano Harris left he said that the work here is the best as he's ever seen it in his six months here so I definitely got lucky! Prepare yourselves to see more pictures of people in white because I'm a "baptizing missionary!" I got one under my belt so I'm addicted now! But on a serious note, I am so excited for this new transfer, and I know I will love it here, because I trust my mission president, and above all, I trust my Father in Heaven. I love you Dad, I love you Mom, I love you Morgan, I love you Brooke, I love you Heather, I love you Greg. Thank you for your examples to me. I could do nothing with your support! Vi voglio tanto bene! Vi amo! Alla prossima!
Con amore,
Anziano Clay Lacey

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