Guys! It's been a crazy awesome week full of literally all the emotions, mainly due to three things! 1) We done got cultured 🎭🎨🎼 2) We done got transfer calls ☎️🚊 3) I done ran into a wall and might have broken my toe. Idiot lol. Anyways, let's expound a bit on these three things! Well, at least the first two😅
1) CULTURE 🎭🎨🎼
Alright so in our mission, Presidente Allen has allowed us the opportunity to do what's called a culture event. Basically, once during the mission, you can find an event, concert, play, show, etc. and go, no matter what day or time it is. Well, everyone and their dog was freaking out because the world famous opera The Barber of Savile was coming to Florence... sooooo last week, we were doing a scambio with the Ancona Sorelle, my ex-comp Sorella Arndt and her comp Sorella Hurst. We got permission from pres to go to this opera together during scambio, and it was absolutely a m a z i n g😍😍😍 it was so good and fun and guess where we watched it? Palazzo Pitti. Yep, we literally watched a world famous opera. In Italian. At a palace in Florence. It was a good night, although I've realized I've completely lost my ability to stay up late😅 The show ended close to 1am and I was fighting not to fall asleep lolololol. Seriously, an unforgettable night!
2) TRANSFERS ☎️🚊
This past weekend, we got transfer calls, and they were shocking like always. Let me first just say how glad I am that this is my last time getting transfer calls lol! The anxiety and stress and PACKING are my least favorite parts of the mission besides tourist filled buses in the summer. Anyways, we'd been assuming I'd stay and finish the mission here in Firenze, but it looks like God's plan is different! Ironically, I'm going to go take Sorella Arndt's spot in Ancona! Only fitting, given that I've followed her for literally my entire mission lolol! When we got the call, I was suuuuper heartbroken. Firenze is my absolute favorite place in the world, and it just about kills me imagining leaving these people. However, God's been helping me out a lot. I've never felt more at peace with a transfer call than I have for this one. I know without a doubt that my place for these next six weeks is in Ancona with Sorella Hurst❤️ ALSO I'm gonna be right next door to my past comps Orr and Carter, and my buds Sorella Anderson and Anziano Gibb! So yeah, Ancona it is! The sorelle just opened there last transfer, so it's still new. It's by the sea. It's a small branch. Aaaaand that's about all I know, but I'm excited!
So yeah, this week has been a week of goodbyes which are MY LEAST FAVORITE THING! But it's ok. There're been some cool things! For one, we spent Pday today with Carolina our investigator, just chilling around firenze. Also, bishop's family was out of town so he Skyped them during church so we could say goodbye. I just about died, especially since church had already been filled with so many goodbyes! The last night with the Larrain family nearly killed me. I love these people so much. Then tonight, we're saying goodbye to the Fallani and Rivera family, and to their precious kids!
I think the coolest thing for me, however, was our final lesson with Carolina Cabezas. I really tried to soak it all in, and was reminded of our first encounter with her. It was, like, my second week in Firenze when Sorella Arndt and I knocked on her door. It was beautiful at the end of yesterday's lesson to sit back and see how much progress and change Carolina has made. When we met her, she claimed to be a Christian but really didn't have much religious knowledge. She'd never prayed before, and was pretty content with her life. Her responses were always pleasant but short. Now, she prays daily and has been studying the Book of Mormon! She loves going through the children's edition with little Cristian because she likes the illustrations. She's receptive and open during lessons, and we have a super strong relationship. She's honest with us about her concerns and weaknesses, and is slowly but surely trying to live all of the commandments. At the end of the lesson, we all knelt down to pray, and I couldn't stop the tears from streaming down my face as she prayed for me by name.
This change I've been able to see in Carolina over these last four and a half months reminds me why I'm out here, and what the Lord's work really is. I think we sometimes picture missionary work as being just for nonmembers, or that there's some sort of time crunch for baptism and all of that. In reality, however, a missionary's purpose is to bring others to Christ. I don't think God cares who it is- if it's a member, less active, investigator, or just some rando you find on the street. I also don't think He cares how much time the process takes. In the end, the purpose is still the same: to bring souls unto the savior.
And it's just getting kind of real to me that I only have six more weeks where that is my only purpose.
So I'm pretty stoked to go to Ancona and do just that👊🏼🏝
1- 7 The Opera! 8-18 Goodbyes 😢