Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Felice Giorno d'Indipendenza!

Cara famiglia mia,

Hey guys! Happy Independence day! Be safe and have some fun! It's hard to believe that a year ago I was in the MTC watching the fireworks from the stadium at BYU! Time is flying too quickly!

This has been a great week. I'll skip ahead to what happened yesterday. We went to Cagliari for zone conference and it was perfect. Just like always President Kelly received such inspiration, specifically for us here in Sardegna, and as he spoke of different methods we can use to invite people to act, it all just clicked and all the questions I came with were definitely answered. Especially those regarding our investigator Adhemar. One thing that I realized and will always remember now is an important point in missionary work. We learn that the Spirit is the true teacher of course, but what does that make us missionaries as the vessels to bring the Spirit into this person's life? We are 'inviters'. Nowhere in our missionary purpose does it say that we teach people but instead, we invite people to act for themselves so that they can be directly connected to the powers of heaven. This is such an important principle and it helps us missionaries learn the Christlike attribute of humility as we recognize where the true power comes from. Just like Christ, the Greatest of all who lived, took not the source of the things He taught upon Himself, but directed the doctrine back to His Father. As you can see I really enjoyed this conference and it is a huge testimony builder that leaders in the church are put in their positions and specifically called of God, and these humble people tell us what the Lord would have shared with us, therefore it is so important to sustain and honor our leaders. 
President and Sister Kelly
Sardegna Zone Conference - 7/3/12

I also had my interview with President and that went well, and based on what he said it is pretty much set in stone that I'm leaving the island. I love Sardegna, the wonderful people, members of the church, but I'm ready for a change. President Kelly said that he likes to have missionaries set roots in an area, and my eleven months here have done that. I have never been more excited for transfers, and I know that I will be blessed wherever I go. 

The investigators are doing well. We have been focusing a huge part of our efforts with finding, and when I say finding I mean talking with EVERYONE on the street. I have found this to be the most effective ways of finding people. I love seeing the blessings and miracles that come from it, plus the more people you talk to, the more neat and interesting people you'll meet, and the greater chance there is to find that person who is ready to hear the Gospel. 

We were debating whether or not we wanted to stay in Cagliari for a preparation day together for the fourth of July. The great example of Anziano Schwing helped convinced me that we should get back to our area as soon as possible, especially after such a great and recharging zone conference. Since he and Anziano Ferrero where heading back that night, we jumped in the car with them. We got back at about 7:30, and still had an hour and a half left in the day, so we went right out and found three people who are interested to hear the message. If we would have stayed it would have delayed their chance to learn of the truth. I love the mission for just little things like this. 

A fun little story, we met with an ex-investigator named Letizia who unfortunately had to stop taking the lessons because her mother is contrary to the church. She still tries to come to English course though, and we set up a little activity in which she taught us how to make cheesecake! I'm proud to say that I can now make a delicious desert! We are going to have some fun cooking when I come home!
Oh! I absolutely forgot to share the most hilarious and saddest story that happened to me and Anziano Hill before he left and it just came to my mind now. We came home after English course one night, and Anziano Hill was pretty eager to get to bed. We waited at the ground floor of our apartment building for the elevator to take us to the fourth, but the yellow button was illuminated signifying that it was occupied. Anziano Hill pressed the button impatiently about ten times still being yellow, so the absolute second that it was available he pressed the button which brought the elevator down towards us. In the elevator shaft we could hear terrifying screams of a little girl. We paused and listened for a second, I looked at him and said, "what did you do!?" As the elevator got closer to us the shrieks and cries from within grew louder. We waited with fright as to what would confront us as the door opened. When it finally landed, the doors opened and a small, three year old girl was there by herself, imprisoned by a descending elevator. When she saw us instead of her mother (which I'm sure was the last thing she saw before the doors closed) she screamed louder, and Anziano Hill knelt down to her level and tried to ask her what floor she lived on so he could send her back up... The poor child felt cornered and cried. I yelled up the stairs to the parents that were rushing down telling them that she was alright. Finally when the mom came the poor little girl felt comforted, but she was so scared and scarred from before, that it was hard for her to catch her breath. She was in her mom's arms, and when she realized that we weren't scary guys in suits she waved to us and said repetitively, "ciao" waving her little hand. Needless to say I was really embarrassed about the whole situation, but the parents knew it was just an accident. In the end it was so cute and amazing to see how quick to forgive children are, and the love they have for others. This is a little testimony from what the Savior says on how we must follow the examples of children and learn from them because theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 
I love you all so much! We'll see where I'll be next week when I write again because I have no clue! 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 safe week! I miss you all so much! Thank you for your prayers because I need them and I feel them everyday! You're the best! Vi voglio una galassia di bene! Statemi bene!

Con gran affetto.

Anziano Clay Lacey

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