Monday, October 21, 2013

Double Coverage

Old News
I realized that I definitely forgot to tell you last week that Sorella Foster and I are staying together for another transfer. no surprise there.  We are excited about it because we are just figuring out the city and getting to know our investigators.  It would have been rough to get moved so soon after getting acquainted. 

New News
What IS new news is President finally figured out which missionaries are assigned to which ward.  We have had 10 missionaries between the two wards, and no one knew which one they would go to.  The wards were starting to freak out because obvi if they have referrals they don't want to give it to one elder if he goes to the other ward (and they really want to give all their referrals to the sisters anyways).  

So they were really just fighting over who gets the sisters. 

Make Room
It was so funny because yesterday was the first day the new wards officially had two separate meetings, and we still didn't know where we were assigned.  So we basically just had to choose one to attend.

Since the first ward was full, we went to the other one and then the bishops asked, 


We explained,  "No, it's just that this one was full so we went to the other one."  

Then the bishop of the first ward offered, "Sisters, I will get you more chairs if you want more chairs.

So it's nice to feel loved. 

Double Coverage
But, anyway, President finally decided that we get to go to BOTH wards... which is great because we don't lose any of our investigators, but also super hectic because we have to report to two bishops, two RS presidents, two mission leaders, etc... 

Lots of work here in Rome.  No time to eat or sleep. really though.. we had to skip lunch twice this week. 

Grand Central Station - Rome
It was a SUPER busy week because of transfers.  Almost everyone comes to our area to switch or pick up new companions or something.  So we had to babysit different sisters all week, taking them where they need to be and feeding them.  

So we have no money for food left (guess that means it's pasta all week till the new transfer comes)... it's only 50 cents... I'm going to die of over pasta.  I never thought I'd say that. 

But it was really fun getting to meet new sisters.  So really a lot of this week has just been traveling and trying to fit in some appointments and meetings with President and other assignments.

... at least the ones I can think of right now:
Last pday I saw the Mosè, which is one of my DREAMS, and it was beautiful.

The Mosè (Moses) by Michelangelo 
at the basilica of San Pietro in San Vincoli

Not a Noodle
That night we went to a serrata familiare (FHE) with one of the ward members and we ate pig skin.  It was funny because all the missionaries who came with us are younger than me in the mission and don't speak as much Italian.   
(the first time Kaitlin had pig skin - back in Cagliari)

So I was the only one who understood what it was, and I got to watch their faces as they tried to figure it out.  Then I got to watch their faces as I told them what it was.  I just pretended it was a noodle. 

Mission Talk
An elder from Napoli came up to the city and made me feel like an idiot because he said they heard the story about when we got lost in Rome that first night and the assistants had to come pick us up.  So now the whole mission (as he says) talks about the stupid sisters in Rome that have to call the assistants to rescue them...

Sleep Talk
Sorella Foster says I've been stress sleep talking in Italian.  The other night I said, 
"Fratello, I've called him every day and he won't answer my calls!" in Italian.  

I think I may need medical attention.

Gypsy Camp
We discovered a gypsy camp.  We felt impressed to go a certain park the other day, so we went to it and we talked to everyone there.  We still had time more time to work, so we prayed about it and felt we needed to go back. 

So we did, and we found three new people to talk to... and one of them said she wants her daughter to come to our English Course. 

Anyway, we also found out about a train that takes us to the metro MUCH faster then the bus, which also passes behind this same park.   From the perspective of the train, we realized that there is a large ditch that goes behind the park and that there are HUNDREDS of gypsy tents and things. super sketch.

On Duty
Even with all this traveling and babysitting, we were still able to do quite a bit of work.  One morning we were taking the missionaries to the station, and we were able to give away a Book of Mormon and then invite another man to come to church (who had been listening to our conversation).  

It was a great reminder that we are always on duty and we never know where we will find someone who might be searching for the gospel.

Weird... in a good way
Sorella Foster continues to make me laugh.  The other day we were sitting on the train and she told me she thought of a new game called "Zombie Tag."  sounds legit.  She reminds me of Scott sometimes. 

She also managed to compare the Lamanites and the Nephites to certain episodes of Scooby Doo. 

Favorite quotes of the week: 

 "When he gives you that stupid look, it's because he is looking at me behind you."

 "I just like adding flowers to things; it makes it classy.  It's like a photo-op with a big flower barrette." and 

"You are weird.. but like in a good way.. not in the 'I don't want to talk to you' kind-of-way."  (which she said when we were in bed trying to fall asleep.. out of the blue)

Thanks for the talk and the baptism pictures.  I may have cried a little. (I've never "happy-cried" so much in my life as on my mission.)   

Kaitlin on her Baptism Day

Also thanks to Brother Palmer for the sweet letter he sent with his mission experiences.. it touched my heart.  

Everyday Devotion 
It's been a busy but a great week.  Even though by the end we were super exhausted, it reminded me how happy I am to be here.  I love serving here in Rome.  

I find so much joy in knowing that all day, every day is devoted to the Lord's work.. even if it's small things like making lunch for 6 starving sisters, or staying up late to open the door for them after a 10 hour train ride, or listening to my companion talk about her MTC friends, or sharing my testimony with a man outside of our house as we wait for the elders to come pick us up in the car, or giving away a Book of Mormon, or having an FHE with ward members.  

Inside Out
I think about my life before and how absent the fullness of the gospel was from my life.  I had a testimony and I believed it to be true and I lived the principles, but there is something about actually living FOR the gospel.  

It changes you from the inside out.  

I'm so grateful for this time to serve.. in small and in significant ways.

With love from Rome,
Sorella O'Connor

"Weaknesses become strengths, challenges becomes opportunities, trials become triumphs, and adversity becomes adventure in the service of the Lord." - M. Russell Ballard

p.s. Doing a photo shoot for the bishop's family next pday. so excited.

(Email Sent - October 21, 2013)

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