Monday, April 29, 2013

Last Week in the MTC

So, it's my last P-day in the MTC. My heart is full of love, excitement, and joy. Yet, at the same time, I feel my heart breaking. I would never have guessed it would be so difficult to leave this place and the wonderful people I am surrounded by. My dear sweet companion, Sorella Baer, is the best companion I could have been given. I know without a doubt, we were meant to spend this time together. I have learned so much from her, and I am so grateful for everything she has taught me. Besides my dear companion, I will be leaving my district, our adopted district, my wonderful teachers, and many other people who have impacted my life. Many of those I love will be coming with me to Milano, although we will not often be together. However, there are many of those I love who will serve in Roma, Romania, Russia, the Ukraine, and many other missions throughout the world. Words cannot express the way I feel towards these wonderful people, especially my district. It's hard for me to believe that only a few weeks ago, I didn't know this group of people, who I am now as close to as my own family. We realized yesterday that we have spent 16 hours together everyday and we have prayed together over 150 times. I suppose I could not help but love these wonderful people, because I was really given no other choice. Also, as far as prayers go, we also realized, as a companionship, we have prayed together at least 500 times. OH MY GOODNESS! I don't even know how this is possible, but I do know these prayers are part of a major reason I love my companion. I am so grateful for the power that the Spirit of the Lord is able to bring to a companionship.
I love and respect all of my teachers. I'm so grateful for the time they take to teach us and how they always follow the Spirit. The joy they share with us is so incredible. I know without them I wouldn't be nearly as prepared as I am. Just as it is inspired who our companions and district are, our teachers are also those who are best for us. I wish I could truly express my gratitude for them. I am so grateful for the love they show us, because this is hard. I have never done something this difficult in my entire life. I could not do this without them - all of them. Each one has different incredible qualities, and I'm so grateful for them.

So this is dear Fratello Dean. He's not our teacher, but he
eats lunch with us all the time and always makes us speak
in Italian when we're around him. He might be the happiest
man I've ever met. This was the last day we saw him
because he's in Italy right now. Also, he guessed my first
area will be Genova. Only a few more days until we find
out if he's right!
Last night, we taught our final lesson to dear Salvatore (Fratello Weller). Confession: Sunday we realized it was his baptismal day, but we weren't sure if he remembered. So to start off the lesson, I asked him how he felt about his baptism. Furbo! (Sly) What happened next was unexpected. He described the feelings he had before, during, and after baptism. I STARTED CRYING. Of course, his sweet testimony touched my soul, and I am so grateful for the simple, yet profound way he shared his feelings. I explained to Salvatore that it would be our last lesson, because next week we'll be transferred to other cities. I then shared my love of the Savior. I know life is hard. But I also know that when you accept the Savior into your life and follow His example, life truly does become easier. The Lord will always offer you help when you are in need of it most. Our last lesson was only around ten minutes, but I have never been in a lesson in which I felt God's love for my investigator, for my companion, and for me so strongly. I know the Lord loves us and wants nothing more then for us to be happy.
It's official. We have our travel plans!

As today is P-day, we were able to attend the temple. I realized it was the last time I will be able to go to the temple for seventeen months. I can't express how much it breaks my heart to know I will not be able to even see a temple for that amount of time. However, the next time I do attend the temple, it will be at the end of my mission, in Rome. I don't think I'll ever understand exactly how much the people of Italy appreciate the fact they will soon have a temple, but I do know how grateful I am to have been given the opportunity to attend the Provo Temple for the last five weeks. Every single Thursday, we meet the sweetest woman in the temple, and today we talked to her for one final time. She's in a wheelchair, and she's totally dependent on those around her. But she never gives up, and she's always happy. Today she told us that even when we are sad, there is no reason we cannot make ourselves be happy at the same time. What is the point in dwelling in misery? Remember, more then one feeling can abide at a time, just don't ever let it go over to your sadness. She loves people, and it is evident in the way she talks to us and expresses herself. She has taught me a lot in the last few weeks, and I'm so grateful we were able to speak to her today. 
Me and Sister Greenall

I'm sure by now you're all aware of how clumsy I am. But in case you're not, let me tell you a little story. I was sleeping and my roommates were awake talking about something spiritual. I don't know what it was. I was asleep; remember? Anyway, as my companion tells the story, she watched me slowly roll towards the edge of the bed. At one point, my foot flipped around the side of the ladder, and she jokingly thought if I had moved with any more strength I would fall out. Well . . . a few minutes later, I flip out of bed and torpedo down to the ground. (Thank goodness for that first night we decided I'd sleep on the bottom bunk.) So basically one of my sides is bruised, but it's no big deal. Except for the general hilarity that ensued - all of us laughing and crying. All night you would randomly hear one of us laughing about it. Don't worry, thanks to my dear district, pretty much everyone here knows about it. If one of us starts laughing randomly, there is a 99% chance it's about that moment.
Miracles of the week:

BYU Men's Chorus gave a devotional this week. I love music!

Fratello Pesci taught a lesson this week, and we talked about the opera Turandot. I love that I was able to discuss opera, even if only for a while. I get more and more grateful that God is sending me to Italy.

On Friday we received our travel plans. We have to leave at 4 in the morning on Tuesday. We fly to Chicago, Frankfurt, and finally Milano! I cannot believe in a few short days I will be in Italy!

Fratello Dean guessed I would serve in Genova first. We'll know if he was right soon!

The next time I'll write, I'll be in beautiful Italia. Vi Voglio Bene!

So we have this Valentine someone
sent my companion . . .
and when you lose a bet, this happens.

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