I feel like this email should be extra special since it's email #20... Hmmm...
*insert fiesta music here*
Well, want some updates? Let's do some updates since I've been in
Italy for over 3 months. Why not.
- It's still hotter than Hades
- But sometimes it rains so hard, I find myself checking for Noah to
show up with his beast-infested ark
- Mosquitos are killin me man
- Our neighbors are still constantly drunk and party every night
- Sadly, we have yet to score an invite to said parties
- Totally ain't sick of Italian food
- Our toilet is still broken...
- I'm still totes in love with Italy!
Ok so throwin it back to last Wednesday real quick, cuz a super cool experience happened literally minutes after I sent my mass email off!
We were having English class as usual, but it turned into a full-on gospel convo! Sepideh, a student in her 20s from Iran, had all these
questions for us! She's NEVER shown any interest whatsoever, but all of a sudden started talking about how she'd looked into various
religions, but nothing really felt right. She decided she believed in God, but didn't know what else. So we spent the entire hour hearing
her thoughts and then sharing our basic beliefs, and then asked her if she'd like a Book of Mormon... She said yes! Buuuutttt that she wanted
it in Farsi. We said we could probs find one for her!
Then get this- we grabbed our orders we'd received and got ready to head home... But it seemed heavier than it should be... We'd ordered
more copies of the B of M in Italian... But we opened the package and found that we also had a different copy... IN FARSI!!! The fetch?!?
Weirdest part is: S. McHardy and I distinctly remember making the decision to order one in Farsi back a few weeks ago... But we have no
idea why we made that choice! Literally none of our pre existing investigators or potentials had need of a Farsi copy... Idk man. God
is real. Also, so is adversity... Cuz right after that cool moment, a storm came. And by storm, I mean tempest. And the bus never came. So
we walked over an hour to get home, literally so soaked and so cold and trying to keep our iPads and the Farsi B of M dry... And we were
determined not to let Satan win this one so we legit marched through the floods singing "Called to Serve" and then all the Disney songs. At
the top of our lungs. And yelling "NOT TODAY SATAN" in between each one. And ya know what? We got home and our iPads and the B of M were
safe despite the fact that we were absolutely sopping wet. And looked very much like the matchmaker lady from Mulan... There are probably
some great principles to be drawn from this day... I'll let you guys figure that out haha.
Thursday we traveled 2 hours out to the city of Piossasco, a super cute piazzina out in the middle of nowhere. President Allen has really
stressed the importance of caring not just for investigators, but for the members and less actives too, which I LOVE! So S. McHardy and I
have been going through our ward list and trying to visit a freak ton of less actives, as well as doing member visits and lessons. Well, the
Catalanos live so far out, they haven't been visited in almost a year, so we decided to head out there! Sadly, the bus we needed to take runs
like every 4 hours, so we got there a lot earlier than we'd planned. So we did some tracting, and then realized that the Catalano's son and
his wife lived nearby (also in our ward, but they just had a baby so sometimes aren't able to make it to church), so we dropped by for an
impromptu visit. Totally made Elisa's day, and we had awesome gospel convos! I was pleased, cuz she's quieter and doesn't have as many
friends in the ward. But now she's friends with us at least so yay! Then we had our appointment with the other Catalanos. They kill me cuz
they are just so Italian. They looked through all my pics, constantly asking if I had a fiancé lol...
I'm like "no..."
And she's like "you are friends with boys though, right? It would be
weird if you weren't..."
*laughs confusedly* "Yes Tina... I have friends..."
And she's like "Oh! Are you in love with them?"
She was disappointed to hear that... The convo quickly changed into
"You should move to Italy... For LOVE!" 😑 Oh my gosh, these people
kill me lol it was like I was living a soap opera hahahaha😂😂😂😂😂
Friday, we had a cool appointment with Sorella Miele in our ward, and her nonmember son. After our little lesson thing, he left for work,
but we stayed and ate with Sorella Miele. As we were talking, the convo turned to Jesus Christ, and with tears in her eyes, she
explained to us that for her, "Gesù Cristo è tutto." Jesus Christ is everything. She started opening up to sum telling us about her
miraculous conversion story; how she lost her husband pretty early on; how she loves her kids and grandkids SO MUCH but none of them want the
gospel in their lives. She shared how it's only through Christ that she makes it through the hard times; that when "her body aches and her
problems feel heavy, she thinks of Christ and instantly feels an energy flow through her entire being". Oh how I want to be like her
one day. Isn't it true though? Gesù Cristo è tutto!!
Saturday, we had an appointment with Luciana... (Yes, that crazy Nona who gave me the fake bird to play with... And who made me read the
dictionary... And who sat on the gift we'd made her... And provided many an insult, but did so out of the goodness of her heart... We
think?). Ha, it was McHardy's first time meeting her lol. Luciana rambled as per usual, and gave us a snack... Some sort of green
vegetable with vinegar & some strange sauce, on top of stale bread… We asked her what it was... Still not sure what the green thing was,
but the sauce was white wine... So... That happened...? We gave her our lil lesson. She still thinks I'm literally a child😂 she sent me
home with a little tea set to play with for when I'm bored… Oh Luciana...
Sunday was AMAZING!! We walked in, and Gabriele (our investigator) had come in his lil suit coat. Just precious. And 3 freaking less-active
families were there! And... Get this... Gabriele Furia was there! I’ve never seen him in church before! He had us take a selfie so I could
officially have proof that he'd come to church... That sassy pants lololol. I was a happy camper allllllll during sacrament meeting! But
then I got many feelings of stress, because investigator Gabriele told us he could feel Satan working on him and didn't know if he could
still be baptized this month... So to not feel stressed, my comp and I went out to find people to teach. No luck cuz there was another flood,
although we found a nearly deaf lady who called us angels and let us pray with her, before running off into the woods...? Idk man...
Monday we had studies and district meeting. I was feeling a bit stressed about what to do about Gabriele, especially because my comp
and I both had very different ideas about what we should do. Luckily, we had an amazing training and afterwards, my comp and I were both on
the same page as far as what to do about Gabriele!
We had our lesson with him on Tuesday, and it was probs the best lesson I've had so far. The spirit was so strong, and I started to
legitimately feel the gift of tongues for the first time. We addressed his concerns, continually bringing back the focus to the necessity of
baptism, and the blessings involved. Lol this guy makes me bold, idk why. Every time he brought up a concern, I was like "But Gabriele, you
want to end up in heaven right?" And he's like duh. And I'm like "that's what I thought" and he's like "k good point". Also idk where
this idea came from (God obvi, but whatevs) but I was like “Gabriele, do you hear that?" And he's like "uh what?" And I was like "Your Book
of Mormon!" And he stares at his book, like what the freak... And I’m like "Ha, Alma has a question for ya... Mosiah chapter 18 verse 10 "
Which of course is the scripture that's like "what have ye against being baptized" and he was like "hmm, good one." I'm so weird lol. We
left him with a sort of agreement... He's going to ask God every morning and night through prayer if he should get baptized or not. We
promised him that if he did this, he would receive an answer. So please continue praying for this awesome dude! Oh, and on that topic,
I do testify that when you truly ask something of God, and do so sincerely, you will receive an answer. I had my own little experience
with that this week, and so I feel rather qualified to restate that promise to you lovely humans this week. It's real; God loves us, and
because He loves us, He wants to help us. And because we are truly His children, we have the divine, beautiful privilege of receiving
revelation and answers from Him. And how neat is that? Pretty neat. Fetching fantastic. Yay!
As to my email title... Well first of all, I've been rereading the bible lol and my comp and I have been studying Kolob and other
mysteries during comp studies. Cool cool, but back to me studying the bible. Poor Sorella McHardy has had to deal with my ranting about the
Egyptians. Those of you who've read the bible (or at least seen prince of Egypt or something) feel my pain. They just tick me off. Well tbh,
a lot of the bible ticks me off because the people are stupid sometimes instead of listening to God, but that's ok... I am like
those people sometimes😅 Anyways, ironically, we went to the Egyptians museum! Amazing, especially since it's the 2nd largest Egyptian museum
IN THE WORLD (2nd only to the one IN Cairo... So...) but yeah, it was way legit... But just funny cuz I'd literally just finished Exodus
this morning lol. Ah love life. Also cool cuz we saw a little thing in one of the tombs... It's legit the Facsimile 2 from the book of
Abraham... Which my comp and I had used earlier in our study of Kolob... So yes, the four of us sat there in the tomb with our
scriptures open like lil Mormon nerds... In an Egyptian museum… In Italy... Guys, did I even wake up this morning? Cuz this doesn't seem like reality...
Summarization of this scatterbrained week: God is real. Adversity is real too, but can be overcome (esp if Disney songs are involved).
Moving to Italy for love isn't the best choice... But it's a cute thought...? Jesus Christ IS everything. God answers prayers. We should
follow the example of the people in the bible... Except for the crazy unrighteous ones. Egypt is a crazy mess, but that's okay. I love you.
God loves you. Have a great week❤️
1-Locked out of the church 2-Stuck in the rain 3&4-Catalano family
5&6- Furias, Furias & more Furias! 7-Teaching Primary 8- The Egyptian Museum
9-13- I promise I’m an adult…except not 14-17 More from Egypt!
18- The Facsimile 2