Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Take Some Time To Make Some Music Today

Me, Sorella Strong, Giaccomo, and Alan
This week we had an amazing branch activity. The theme was “The Plan of Salvation.” Several of the members gave short talks and bore their testimonies. Then Sorella Strong and I were in a short skit with our two priests. Emilio wrote it for us, and it was about faith. Giaccomo and Alan were farmers, and we were explaining to them how our faith is just like a seed. That's an experience I never really expected to have, but our members all loved it. A few of our members brought friends and family who aren't members of the church. They really are loving all the opportunities they have to be missionaries. This Saturday we're having a multicultural night, and they are all so excited! I can't wait to tell you about it next week. As missionaries, we're representing America, Albania, and Italy. It's going to be so much fun!

Me, Sorella Strong, Emilio, Giaccomo,
and Alan
We had a lot of really beautiful things happen this week. We went to our district relief society president's house last Wednesday. We shared our message with Sorella Pini, and then her husband came home. He started investigating the church with his wife 30 years ago, but was never baptized. We had the most amazing lesson with him. He wants to start meeting with us again, and he agreed to read the Book of Mormon everyday. I can't even express how much I love this family. I just feel so connected to them. It was such a beautiful lesson; I'm so grateful I was apart of it. 

The Draghi family asked us to visit their neighbors. Sunday I talked to Giaccomo in church, and he agreed to come with us that night to see them. We went over at 8:30, and together the three of us walked across the hall. Giaccomo was great! When his neighbor opened the door, he explained who we are and asked if we could come in and share a message. We didn't have very much time so we shared a small thought about prayer. At the end, the neighbor asked what the difference is between our church and hers. Giaccomo answered in the most simple and sweet way; then he told her that we can come back and explain more on a different day. Giaccomo will be going on a mission in a couple of years; he'll be so bravo!

Monday we were walking through centro, and I noticed my favorite street musician playing. We stopped to listen just for a moment and noticed another man behind us listening as well. We asked him if he enjoyed the music and talked to him about how we feel close to the Lord when we listen to music. We ended up teaching him about the restoration of the Lord’s church, and he asked if he could come to church with us. Music has played a part in so many miracles I've seen on my mission.

When I was set apart, I was told that I had been chosen to come to Italy because of my love of music. I was also told it would be one of the most important aspects of my mission. I was stunned. I didn't really believe it could be possible. Let me tell you something; don't ever doubt the Lord. I have seen miracle after miracle happen because of music. It touches hearts and initiates change. I'm so grateful for the effect music has had on my mission. 

We have a feeling this is my last week in Rimini. Transfers are coming up, and we're pretty sure I'll be headed somewhere else. We could be wrong; you never know what's going to happen. Just in case though, we're doing a special musical number in church on Sunday. I think one reason I feel like music has affected my mission so much is because of the many opportunities I have had to sing for people. It's the only way I know to show them how much I really love them. Music is a cry of the soul. It can be happy or it can be sad. It allows us to connect with each other, to share how we're feeling in one of the most easily understood ways. This branch has taught me a lot about music and how it connects us all together. I'll never forget them for that.

I love you all. Take some time to make some music today. 
Sorella Ervin

This is what we look like when it rains (me & Sorella Strong).

Sorella Strong, Yulia, and me

Emilio mad us cookies (Sorella Gjika and me)

Sorella Gjika, me, and Sorella Strong

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