This week's title comes as a result of two things from this week:
1- We realized the other day that the comp name for Smedley and Orr is obviously s'morr (like 's'more', but with more 'Orr' lol) which is pretty dope
2- It's Fashion Week. Today in centro Milano, there were models and photographers everywhere. Yep, I'm living in the fashion capitol of the world, during fashion week... aaaaand I look like I'm Amish. Lolololol jokes. Although Orr and I couldn't help muttering "We. Are. Potatoes. We are the DUFFs" as we shopped through Milano lol. Got to meet up with the Lampugnano sorelle for lunch though, meaning I got a few hours with my perfect greenie Sorella Richards❤❤❤❤ We were pretty content. Aside from fashion week, we had a lot of other crazy adventures!
Last Thursday we finished up in Cimiano. I had such a blast doing exchanges with Sorella Anderson, reliving the MTC days! Then we headed back to Muggiò for an appointment with the Huapayas, an adorable Peruvian family! That's one of the really fun things about this area: it's an awesome mix of Italians, Africans, and South Americans! Makes lessons interesting at times, when it's a random combo of Spanish and Italian, or maybe even Portuguese... buuut luckily the gift of tongues is a thing😂 it was also my comp's birthday🎉🎁🎈 you'd best believe we had some stellar pizza and cake to celebrate!!
Friday we had an appointment with Chirico, who is basically the coolest lady ever! She served a mission in Rome, but was super tight with the mission president and ended up serving for 25 months! Literally over 2 years, what a champ! And she's currently working as a CSI, so that's pretty dope🕵🏽♀️👩🏽🔬. And she made us some killer lasagna, which was a life saver since we weren't going to have time for lunch that day!❤ we also met with the Ponce family. They are from Ecuador, and are currently trying to get their son here. Seriously breaks my heart, but also inspires me to see how strong these people are despite INSANE challenges and trials💕
Saturday we met with our nine-year-old new convert and her family! She's seriously adorable, and totally knows her stuff! Plus not gonna lie, Sorella Orr and I loved being greeted at the door by hugs from all the kids!❣️ we also got to meet with Sorella Bassi, a stellar old woman with a life full of surprises! One minute she was showing us her cross-stitch projects, while the next minute we were looking through her books from law school! So cool! Plus, we've started reteaching the missionary lessons with all of our members and less actives. It's so cool- there's always more we can learn and more we can to do be converted!
Sunday was amazing as usual! Love love LOVE our ward! Only downside was the Relief Society president came and asked us not to pass by or visit members and less actives...? And she was pretty dang condescending about it, and you know how well that works with me😑 lol jokes, we were nice. But you'd best believe we went straight to the Bishop after to see if this was legit. It most certainly was not, and the Bishop said "Well.., if that were true... missionary work would go down the toilet" true. "Plus, we honestly can't tell you what to do... we aren't your mission President..." also true. So we did some passbys Sunday night just to spite her.
Er, I mean to share the gospel...
Monday was a day of finding. Always fun but kinda rough. We took a break at one point to ride the pony things in the park. And we watched an awkward couple and provided commentary. Also, observed a squirrel swan dive into the lake... a mistake on his part, given that it's totally freezing. But whatevs... Breaks are much needed sometimes. We met with Sorella Sacco too. The lesson was a success. Well, minus the fact that she kept telling her 30 year old son that he needed our message more than her, and that he was stupid. Also, she said she couldn't read the Book of Mormon cuz her leg hurt...🙃
Tuesday was District Meeting, correlation, and ward council. In between, we were able to visit Vanja, an amazing woman with a rough life! She talks your ear off, which is rough cuz her couch is really comfortable and the desire to nap is so real. Seriously, she's amazing though and it was a great lesson🤗
We had some solid finding this week, both on its own and in between our appointments. No new investigators, but had some funny and solid experiences, including but not limited to:
- Finding a million and one cute couples and having super cool convos about life. Also, we did not feel trunky at all...😅
- Trying to stop this girl and talk to her, and instead of rejecting us or talking with us, she literally froze mid walk😳😳 legit just froze on the spot...? Awkward.
- Meeting a Muslim guy who claims to believe in all religions. He was unimpressed that we didn't know specific details regarding how Abraham, Christ, and Moses were born (apparently all occurred under a tree that still stands today...?). He informed us kindly that it was cute of us to try to teach people, but that we knew nothing lol. It took a lot for Sorella Orr and I to not just completely shut this guy down haha but when you're a missionary, that's not in the job description😂 so we thanked him and promised to study instead of teaching people🙄 he said we were welcome to come to his mosque anytime...
Wanna know a cool thing? Ok, so most of us have heard the story of Christ feeding the 5000. 🍞🐟He's out teaching and everything is going swimmingly until everyone starts getting hangry. We're talking the people, the disciples, EVERYONE! And at some point, the disciples realize there are no kebab joints in sight, and the pizza delivery guy only accepts cash (sound familiar, Italian missionary friends?!). Well, the disciples ask Jesus what they're supposed to do, and He tells them to go figure out the food situation. So then the disciples go around asking if anyone has any granola bars or beef jerky or other road-trippin snacks lying around. They find only 5 loaves of bread and two fishes (ew) so they come bring it to Jesus, probably feeling a lovely mix of discouragement, embarrassment, and hunger. What does the Master do? He thanks God, blessed the meal, and then asks the disciples to start passing it out. Miraculously, the entire crowd of 5000 is fed (plus leftovers!), aaand not a soul complains about the fact that it's literally fish and bread lol. This story teaches us of the reality of miracles, but it also provides insight on something a little greater.
Let's take a second and analyze what just happened here. You've got, like, five steps that led to the miracle after the initial problem was addressed:
1- Christ asks His disciples to feed the multitude, a near impossible task. Had they gone into town and purchased food for the multitude, it would've cost nearly eight months' worth of wages. Truly, this task was beyond the disciples' present ability.
2- The Savior asks instead, "ok, well what can you provide?", at which point the disciples find the loaves and the fishes.
3- The Savior instructs them to bring the loaves and fishes unto Him.
4- The disciples give Him that which they have.
5- The Savior blesses and multiplies that which the disciples were able to provide, and miraculously meets and surpasses what was originally needed.
Cool lil miracle, kinda like His infinite Atonement and grace. Although with each of us, it's an internal miracle rather than an external one, the same steps are followed:
1- During our mortal existence, we are asked to do a variety of difficult tasks. Obeying the commandments, persevering during trials, and fulfilling God's will for us are not impossible tasks. However, there may be things that are literally beyond our current ability to do.
2- The Savior asks us instead, "ok, well what can you provide?"
3- He asks us to give Him all we have. All our efforts. All our faith. All we can do.
4- We use our agency to offer Him all that we have.
5- On our own, we fall far too short. However, the abundant power and grace of His Atonement more than compensates for our shortcomings.
Elder Holland said, "Don’t worry about Christ running out of ability to help you. His grace is sufficient. That is the spiritual, eternal lesson of the feeding of the 5,000".
Like, wow- the miracle of feeding the 5,000 is pretty dang cool🍞🐟
But it's nothing compared to the miraculous nature of His grace, which cleanses us and makes us whole.
1&2- Exchanges with Williams & Anderson 3-Sorella Orr’s Bday pizza! 4- Tiramisu
5-7 Our favorite place for Finding 8-9 Playing with Micaela 10-11 Fashion Week featuring the real potatoes of Milano