Thursday, February 27, 2014

Letter #24 - 2/26/14

Ciao Famiglia!

Okay so crazy week out here in the boondocks of Italia, I have a new companion! Her name is Sorella Jarvis and she is from Virginia and she is super sweet. So I picked her up in Bologna on Thursday night, I ended up being companions with Sorella Holloways for like a whole day because they missed their train and didn’t get in until later in the night.

Then we got back to our area late that night and have basically been doing finding work ever since, haha - since she got here when there was still a week left in the month it didn’t make sense to pay 80 euro to buy a monthly abbonamento (train pass) so we have been doing strada (street) and casa (tracking) every day until the new month when she can get an abbonamento. It has been really hard and I can say that in 6 months of being a missionary I have not been let in to someone’s house doing casa (knocking on peoples doors) but we were able to teach a few lessons doing strada (talking to people on the street). It has been hard and totally out of my comfort zone since I have been doing train finding for so long, but it is good for me and I am learning things that will help me the rest of my mission.

Also, Mom and dad your dreams came true and this past Sunday - I played the piano in Sacrament meeting, haha - I haven’t played in so long and I miss it. But I haven’t missed playing in front of people, haha - still scary - oh well. Our new convert was officially sustained in church as the Relief Society 2nd Counselor and also our little 8 year old girl in our branch was sustained as the "person who writes the numbers of the hymns we are going to sing on the white board" hahahaha - how cute is that?

So funny, also, shout out to Fratello Valentine if you are reading this. Thank you so much for coming to church with us! haha - I am so glad you were able to find our little branch :) By reading my blog you were able to find out where our branch meets and it was fun to meet you.

This week has been really long and having a new companion is so different than I expected, but we are having a lot of fun together and we are excited to see even more miracles come out of this area.

Stephen B. Allen came and talked to us at our district meeting on Monday and he gave us a really good lesson on being focused missionaries. I learned so much and I know there are so many things I still have to work on, but luckily I still have a year to learn them :)

I love and miss you all so much! Thank you for everything! Have fun in Mexico, get a tan for me. I am getting whiter and whiter every day out here, haha - it is actually quite pathetic.

Love and miss you!

Sorella Alli

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Letter #23 - 2/19/14


Crazy week, but so so good. First of all, our investigator got BAPTIZED!! Everything went well and she is baptized and confirmed and happy and all is well in Italia :) haha, but for real, it was a miracle we were there for her baptism because we had to go to the questura that morning to pick up my permesso and we got there on time and our number was 88....and they were only on #2, haha. It went so so slow and we ended up being there for 3 and a half hours before I got it, haha, it was nuts. We were freaking out because we thought we were going to be late for the baptism. How tragic would that have been? Haha, but we prayed really, really hard, like literally every time the number changed we said a prayer and by some miracle we made it out on time. The church is true people!

And the baptism was so so good, the Spirit was so strong and our Branch President was the one that baptized her and he was crying and she was crying and it was just all so beautiful. I LOVE MY JOB.

Also, transfer news! Sorella Lopez is being transferred to Varese and I am staying here in Montevarchi and getting a new companion! Her name is Sorella Jarvis. I am going to go pick her up tomorrow in Bologna! Sorella Lopez and I are sad to leave each other, we have had a lot of fun together and seen so many miracles but we are excited too :) she is going to do so well in Varese!

Also, guess what? Sprinkles do exist here in Italy! I found them the other day, and I bought them and now I am eating them with everything. It’s great and reminds me of home, haha!

I think that is all for this week, I am so grateful that I get to be an Italy Milan missionary, I love this place and I love the people even more. They are so special. Tell everyone hi for me and that I love and miss them! And tell Mal congrats on the baby! Tell my new little cousin I say “hi” and that I will see her in a year :)

Love you Mom and Dad!

Sorella Alli

Friday, February 14, 2014

Letter #22 - 2/12/14

First of all, a couple weeks late but I am proud to be a Seahawk! Haha, That is so cool about the Superbowl!  Also, DAD BOUGHT A TRUCK?! Hahaha, it’s about time! Now that he has his truck we don’t have to build "the edition" right? pleaseeeee don’t! hahaha, How is everything back home?! We are still surviving the rainy season over here in Italy and actually we have seen the sun a few times the past couple days so we are super stoked.

This week was really good and we are doing great here in Montevarchi! Last week was Sorella Lopez's year mark so we had a little birthday party for her and I made her blow out a candle and everything! Haha, don’t worry mom, I got the "fake blowing out the candle picture" just like you taught me, hahaha just kidding.  We actually got it first try! Haha. But it was a lot of fun and we ate sebadas, our favorite dessert from Sardena.

This week we set a goal to teach 30 lessons and with the help of Heavenly Father we did it! Literally we saw so many miracles; we met one woman on the train who was super super sweet and wants us to come teach her so we are going to see her on Thursday! She is super, super nice and we already love her. She is from Santa Domingo too, ironically enough, hahah. We have met so many nice people who were willing to listen to us and we were so happy we reach our goal. And now we are exhausted.

Everything is going well with our investigator with a baptismal date so we should be having a baptism here really soon! She is really excited and is basically already a member of the branch, everyone loves her. She is hilarious, haha, she keeps us laughing all the time. Our three new converts are doing really well too! The 16 year old just became the Young Women’s secretary and she loves it. And she loves seminary. And the little 12 year old loves Young Womens too and they are planning a temple trip hopefully this summer. And the mom is working and loves the gospel so much! She always feed us rice from Santa Domingo and is super cute. We love those girls so much. It’s pretty incredible to see how much they have grown in the last few months. They truly have a light about them now. I am so proud of them!

Also, guess what! I got a letter this week from an Elder I have never met before in...Wisconsin! He said he met a couple at the BYU fireside after the big BYU Football game and they talked to him about missionaries and their daughter serving a mission in Italy...and he decided he was going to write me a letter! Haha.  He didn’t have my address or anything and just had an address to one of the Italy Missions his friend was in and decided to try and see if it was mine - turns out it he guessed right. He was really nice and just talked about how proud you guys were of missionaries and that I making a difference out here that I can’t even see. It was a really sweet letter and it made me miss you guys so much! He said you were so nice to him! And he said you haven’t emailed him yet like you said you would, haha. So you should probably get on that ;) haha but yeah! it was super nice of him and totally made my day to hear about how awesome my Mom and Dad are :)

Also! I got your packages! Thank you SO much! I loved them! We sat on the bathroom floor and opened them all and...may have eaten one of the bags of Doritos and chocolates bars right then and there, haha! It was so funny! But we loved it all! THANK YOU SO MUCH! You guys are the best :) Well I think that is all for this week! I hope everything is good back home! love and miss you all so much! talk to you soon!

Sorella Alli

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Letter #21 - 2/5/14

Ciao Famiglia!
How are you all?! So this week was good! It actually went by super-fast! So first of all, last Wednesday for pday we went to San Gimignano and it is literally the prettiest city I have been to in Italy so far. I LOVED IT; It was so beautiful! The view was amazing and we had so much fun. We went with the Sorelle from Firenze again, and there was like no one there which made it even more fun, haha. It was like we had it all to ourselves. We froze our butts off though – but it was so worth it. There was a well in one part of the city and we all made a wish and threw in a coin, haha – It was really fun.
Then today we went to Lucca! It was really cute and we had some really good pizza and definitely the best gelato I have had so far in Italy. It was incredible. I would go back just to have the gelato again, haha!  We climbed to the top of this tower that had trees on the top of it just because we thought it looked cool and it had an incredible view. We always climb the towers. It is our new rule no matter where we go because it is always so cool, haha!
This week was good! We have been trying really hard to teach on the trains and we have seen a lot of miracles. We met one woman on the train last night who was so sweet and cried and everything while we were talking to her. She was super sweet and hopefully we will see her sometime next week too!
Also, our investigator with a baptismal date is doing so good! We are so proud of her. She is 17 and from Nigeria and we absolutely love her. She got up and bore her testimony in sacrament meeting on Sunday and it was so cool to see. She absolutely loves the Gospel and she is so strong. We love her!
Transfers are in two weeks and we have no idea what is going to happen but we are seeing a lot of miracles in our area right now and we are so grateful. Heavenly Father is definitely taking care of us out here in Montevarchi!
Thanks for everything you do for me! I love and miss you all so much but I know I am exactly where I need to be right now.
Love you and talk to you next week! :)
Sorella Alli :)