Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Wow, I'm in Vercelli.

Me and Sorella Walsh with surprises for our anziani.
Wow, I'm in Vercelli. I can definitely say that I love it here. My companion is Sorella Walch and she's pretty much the greatest. We have so much fun every single day. Here's the deal though, she's only been here two weeks longer then me. She was space transfered two weeks before then end of the transfer. Basically we have no idea about anything in the ward or the area. Luckily, our town is pretty small, so it's hard to get lost. Wonderful news, we have Anziani working in the ward! I have missed working with Anziani so much. I love that President Dibb is really trying to have sorelle and anziani in every ward. I know it's going to bless the work so much.
Wednesday night, the Draghi's had us over for Thanksgiving dinner, since we were leaving Thursday morning. OH MY GOODNESS! Words cannot express how much I will miss this sweet family. We sang Anima Mia for them and then prayed before we left. Tears filled my eyes and a sweet and simple prayer was said by Fratello Draghi. As I looked up, the family started laughing at me, like always. I realized in that moment, how much this family and the others in Rimini have become a part of me. I wasn't expecting it to hurt so much everytime I'm transferred, but you really love your area, every person you know. It's like a tiny part of your heart is ripped away everytime you have to leave. But, it is an opportunity to meet more people, to have more love in your heart. I feel like my heart is constantly being torn apart and then rebuilt. I never expected to be able to love so many people at one time. Something I've learned, is that your capacity to love is always growning. Sure, I miss all of you, my family, my friends. My love for the people here doesn't take away from the love I have for you. Now, I just love more people. I'm starting to understand how God can love every individual person equally. Don't get me wrong, I know I'll never truly be able to understand God's love. But, I know how much I love all of the people I've met in Rimini, individually and yet equally. They've taught me so much, most importantly they've taught me how to love.

Sorella Strong making fun of my pose,
come sempre.

Thursday morning, Emilio and Ilaria showed up to take us to the station. Oh my heartbreak. Saying goodbye to them one final time was like saying goodbye to my mom at the mtc. I wish I could have held on to those brief moments forever, but then, it was time to let go. Sorella Strong and I sat on the train and cried as it left. We read letters from the people we have served with and talked about how much we loved Rimini. A little over two hours later, and it was time to say goodbye to her too. Leaving your companion is like leaving behind a part of yourself. It's the strangest sensation in the world. But before I knew it, I was with my sweet Sorella Walch, walking to my new apartment, and admiring tiny, little, beautiful Vercelli.
One last picture as companions.
In Bologna, where we first met.
Sunday I was overjoyed to learn that the ward in Vercelli is a lot like the branch in Rimini. They have a lot of love in their hearts too. It felt like coming home as all of the women pulled me into their arms and told me how grateful they are thay we're here. We got to sing with the Young Women, they're having a concert in a couple of weeks and we get to sing with them. Yay for music! Also, Emilio and Ilaria have friends here in Vercelli. How wonderful! I love them already, they're pretty much wonderful.
A couple of nights ago, we were passing by some members, because we want to get to know everyone. We found a sweed less-active woman who was overjoyed to have us in her house. We shared a message with her and just got to know her. People are incredible, let me tell you. She's not really interested in coming back to church, but she was so kind and so happy to see missionaries. She told us to come back in a few weeks, when her whole famly is home for Christmas.
I can't wait to tell you more about Vercelli. I can't wait to learn about it for myself. This town is so wonderful I can already tell.
Vi voglio un sacco di bene!
Sorella Ellen Rose Ervin
One last look at the arc (in Rimini).

Saying goodbye to the sweet Aguilera family.

Thanksgiving dinner

Pasta for . . . dogs?

Guess what? We live next to the alps . . . no big deal.

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