Friday, October 23, 2015

Week 51 - kalkan? jo akoma

Lushnje missionaries! little day-trip to Great Britain for p-day..   
picked the wrong day to not get ready but check out the scenery!! 
love my cute comp <3 (fun fact her family is in the same ward in Virginia as the Bodell fam from Prishtina!)  

on a weird setting (orange!) but L for Lushnje 

Berati <3 
sunset out in Cerm 

beautiful drive back from Vlore! 


 te tokaa 

This is E and her fam! Along with T, an awesome, strong member 

#ldsconf.. did i mention we have a sweeet apt? 

Hejjj! Hope this email finds you healthy & happy etc... 
I want to mention some experiences from the past week to give you a glimpse of the endless miracles here in the ASM.. Lushnje and the surrounding villages we work in are ripe for missionary work. But like any area, disappointment is still to be found, aka our awesome, most- progressing investigators who would have been baptized this week dropped off the grid thanks to a disapproving chain-smoker dad and extended family who aren't too fond of us who may have something to do with the sudden loss of contact. But, we have some wonderful investigators who have really been progressing and making positive changes and also met quite a few new peeps with lots of potential.

E is incredible. The mother of two; a cute & energetic little boy and a sickly daughter and now that we go out to their house for lessons we also teach her husband, L. They all came to church together on Sunday! They have to sacrifice to afford the bus ride but they did it as a family. She reads and truly wants to understand this gospel for herself and not just take our word for it. Good, that's how it needs to be! We were there for L's first prayer at the beginning of the week, very timid, but we've seen huge progress i.e. yesterday he was teaching his kids how to pray. 

We've had great experiences with bringing some solid recent converts on teaching appointments; these women are full of personality and have fiery testimonies of the restored gospel (one taught that Joseph Smith is still alive today but we clarified that he died a long time ago..she also bore fervent testimony of a former sister missionary who served here so we steered her focus more towards Christ and Libri i Mormonit) 

Had a little RS activity~ showed women's conf. in Shqip, and while we were waiting for others to come, I wanted to show the RS women the YW theme since I found a big poster of it in Shqip and haha for some reason they all thought it was a notice for free mammograms to check for breast cancer? haha.. 

Also went to Berat for district meeting, great training/ discussion on what even is baptism and who are we to deny the waters to any worthy person? Then exchange with Vlore~ the floods hit them pretty hard but I didn't see much damage since I took sis. Peters back here with me. Almost at my year mark and that was the first time serving w/ someone from my mtc group!

Helped the mom of a member harvest some bami (okra? cactus-lookin veggie) so she could come to church but this time her excuse was a death in the fam so she had to mourn. We had a blast workin out in the fields though! 
On my exchange with sis. Peters we stopped by a little fruit treg to pick up bananas (of course hah you know me) and the lady there was interested in us (and our message, I hope..) and we had an impromptu lesson and we actually went back to her house and had a powerful restoration lesson yesterday. 

Oh also the other morning we had some cancelled lessons so we were street contacting and I had a longg conversation with a xhaxhi who gave me future- husband advice lol and I told him about the family: a proclamation to the world. I love testifying at every moment and sneaking in scriptures and gospel doctrines into every conversation. For example, an inactive older lady we visit, Motra B, pretends she doesn't want us to come and acts bitter and cold but deep down she's a sweetie and we try to stop by once a week and each time we've managed to get her to at least crack a smile, and the past couple times she's laughed hard and told us we're sweet girls etc. and opened up about her past (we sneakily highlight the gospel parallels of everything she says) and she still refuses to come to church but I think we're doing more good than we realize, re- lighting her fire if nothing else. Throughout my mission I have really come to learn that the smaller, "everyday" (for us as sister missionaries i.e. a little note/ prayer/ hug), acts of service are the little reminder people need, that they are cared about.

Yesterday in church I got to see Blerta & Olsi (Pres. Agalliu), powercouple from Durres visiting on stake business, that was a fun surprise.

Never a dull moment with this branch! I love serving here and am so grateful for this opportunity to be here in Lushnje with so many testimony- building experiences every day. <3
ju duaa e ju falenderoj per shembujt tuaj kaq te miree.
<3 Motra Rajlli :)

our district, Lushnje + Berat  

longg day so my comp made these hearty pancakes ne mengjes (and she was outta eggs so they were vegann)

our cute investigator danced for us (her and her mom will be baptized in a couple wks!) 

  took pics for her fam's Christmas card haha /   aw when babies wear our tametags >>

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