Wednesday, August 6, 2014

18 months a missionary

TODAY I have been in the mission for 18 months. WOW!!!!

This past week has flown by so incredibly fast. :) I remember waking up on Saturday morning and thinking to myself "Wow!! It has been a whole week since our baptism with Mauro!" Then I realized that the following Saturday I would wake up in AMERICA!!!! AHHH I go through moments of excitement, anxiety, nervousness, happiness, etc. Truth be told, the last week, I have woken up every morning, STANCA MORTA (dead tired), and thought to myself "Ohhhhh mamma mia... only X days until I get to sleep in." I haven't slept in past 6:30 (with the occasional 7:00 by permission or mistake) for 18 months. Pheeeeew! Hahahaha :)

For some reason, our Thursdays are always packed, a little crazy, but always full of miracles. Last Thursday we had planned on seeing many people but everything got turned upside down. Three appointments all wanted to see us at 5 pm. Oh mamma mia... it was stressful! But we got to see EVERYONE that we had planned on seeing. N and A in the morning loved our lesson and Alberto said "Quasi, quasi divento un mormone." (Almost, almost become a Mormon) :) Later, after another lesson, we visited our precious referral F and had an amazing lesson with her before she left for vacation (she has been texting us since). To finish, we had a member present lesson with another referral who we haven't been able to see in awhile. As we were talking, L (simpatizzante) expressed how much she LOVED the Book of Mormon. Last time that we saw her, we had invited her to read Mosiah 2-4 and she has read those chapters several times since. Miracles are happening here in Busto!! :)

On Sunday I gave my final testimony in Italiano here in Italia as a missionary. As I was walking back to my seat, I realized how incredible it was to share my beliefs, joy, and testimony with the Italian people in this people's country. Not only the Italians but all of the South Americans and Africans too. Sorella McPeek put her arm around me as I started to cry. It was a little heart breaking. That being said, I thought about sharing my testimony in my own beautiful country and it made my heart lift up with joy. One thing that I have learned on my mission is just how EASY it is to share the Gospel with others. Just live what you believe, open your mouth and share the love you feel, and never be afraid to say that you are a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. :)

Monday came around and EVERYONE wanted to feed us. We ate 5 meals. FIVE!!! We had Brazilian food, Peruvian food, Filipino Food, and Italian food. Mamma mia. Luckily I had the excuse that I couldn't eat a lot because I was feeling nervous about leaving. True story. :)

Today I am going to spend all day with our favorite member family and we are going to make Italian food!!! I have always wanted to do this and now I can :) I love being a missionary soooo much. It has been the BEST decision that I have made in my life to this point. A member asked me what my favorite part was about my mission and told him that it was inviting people to come unto Christ, especially myself, to feel of His LOVE and HELP. I LOVE my Savior soooo much and I love my Heavenly Father. My relationship with them has been amazing in my time of service. Now I hope to continue it. :)

I love you so much!!! I cannot believe that it is time to come home. :)


Sorella Jameon :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Sprinting to the finish line

Well I feel like I am definitely sprinting to the finish line! It has been a crazy week - we really cannot believe that we have arrived to another Pday. These last few nights I have been SUPER tired, more so than usual and just have to go to bed a little early or take a few moments to consider the lilies. :) I am so grateful that I have been called to serve here in Busto with Sorella McPeek because I wonder if staying in Alessandria as an STL would have killed me. Hahahah plus Sorella McPeek is sooooo laid back and wonderful. She reminds me a lot of Sorella Andromidas in that aspect. Just willing to do what is good but at a good, healthy pace.

This has been such a rewarding week and month. Last week we found 9 new simpatizzanti - 5 of them were referrals and the others were elect people that the Spirit led us to. Up to this point, we have found 28 new simpatizzanti which is almost 1 new simp everyday. Our goal is to find more and help them come unto Christ. :) Also, we had a BAPTISM on Saturday!!! :)

It was such a beautiful baptism. It honestly felt like a dream. Mauro was the perfect person to teach - there was ALWAYS a member present and he consistently went to church. He is solid and strong with the support of the members. We have at least 2 short visits with him every week - one with the family who baptized him and the second one with a another member. We have no worries about his segue into member life.

After the baptism, we went to F's home!!! FINALLY!!!! It is soooo hard to get a hold of teenage girls......We went the day before to make enchilada's with her but she totally spaced the day and forgot! So we talked to her father and planned a family dinner. It was wonderful! They loved the enchiladas (thank heaven's I am obsessed with food - it is a footstep into the hearts of many people) and we were able to leave a small message with them. Only her little sister, father, and grandma stayed to listen. At the end, Nonna said that she wasn't going to change but said that she would still be our Italian nonna. :) Her father agreed to have us over again tomorrow night for dinner. PLEASE pray that their hearts will be softened and that they can accept this message. This weekend F will leave for vacation until Settembre. I was here literally the PERFECT amount of time to see her. She wanted to come to Milano with us but couldn't today. :)

So we are starting to teach the husband of a member who is SO faithful and one of her friends. Their children joined the church too and are all incredible. His name is R and he reminds me a little bit of a snail or crab - super hard and crusty on the outside but kind and sweet on the inside. BUT he mocks us when we teach and laughs at the testimony of his wife. On our last visit, he and the friend snickered and laughed at our invites, saying that praying at least 2 times a day was too much. In that moment, I felt a little bit like how Jarom much feel. He has this BEAUTIFUL message that people don't even TRY to take because they are content and don't want to bother themselves with more work to do, even if it will bring them true happiness. It was frustrating and heartbreaking. Most of the time people reject us because they are either faithful in their religion, believe there is not importance in Christ's church, or they are Atheist. We are praying to know what to do.

This is my final week as a servant of the Lord. It is a weird limbo state as of now but as I said before, I am at peace with everything and content, excited, but of course a little sad to come home. One thing that we talked about with R was WHY we serve a mission. His son served one and he couldn't understand  WHY. He just compares it to military, which is something that he did and didn't love.Sorella McPeek and I explained it simply to him - We LOVE Heavenly Father. We LOVE Jesus Christ and His gospel. We are HAPPY and want others to feel the same way. The Lord has given me MUCH more than we ever gave to Him in this short 18 months of service. I will be eternally grateful for my chance to serve as Sorella Jameson in the Milano Italia Missione. :)


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Gospel is my life!

I definitely have not forgotten to sing in the rain. :) It has been raining on and off here which is fantastic because it keeps the air cooler (but then that also means that it will be a little hard to go out and find people. Italians are so weird about the rain.) Sorella McPeek is so great in helping me stay on track. She makes dead missionary jokes all of the time which just makes it feel like a funny thing. They other day I said that I had 3 weeks left and she patted my back and said "No no... you only have 2 weeks. Sorry." Hahahah

These past few days have been absolutely amazing! Unfortunately we have not been able to see F yet - we are doing EVERYTHING that we can to see her without overwhelming her. But she wants to go to Milano with us and hopefully we will see her on Friday. Last Friday we were in the middle of weekly planning when someone rang our doorbell. We answered it to find a man standing at OUR door asking for a hair school. Of course we were not the people that he was looking for but we did get to start a discussion about who we are. We taught him a lesson on our door step and he said that he wanted to come to church. Hahahah so funny!

Saturday we had a cook off that we organized. Guess who won best dessert? We did of course. :) We made red velvet cake. There was a great turn out and a beautiful Spirit. Earlier that day, we went to teach one of the less actives in our ward. We feel completely lost in trying to help her because she just doesn't understand anymore what is the gospel of Jesus Christ. While we were talking about the importance to prepare NOW to return to our Father in Heaven, she made the comment that she didn't understand that earlier. I was impacted deeply by this. After we left, I asked Sorella McPeek how someone could FORGET these simple and important things. She was a strong and faithful member, went to the temple, raised many children in the church and now she cannot remember the basics of the gospel. Sorella McPeek simply stated "She had forgotten because she doesn't read her scriptures." I never imagined forgetting things of the Gospel because it is my life right now. It is so important to do the small and simple things however to keep our faith STRONG.

We had an incredible miracle last night! Yesterday we had planned on receiving 2 new investigators (we have gotten at least 1 almost every day this month) because we haven't found someone in the last few days. We prayed that we could find these special people. At 8:30 pm, while we were in the middle of teaching M our final lesson before the baptism, someone knocks at the door of the member's home. In walk a beautiful couple from Madrid who recently moved here. We talked to them and explained the basics of what we believed and they both expressed interest in learning more. While we were discussing what we believed, M nodded the entire time and at one point stated "Yes! That is what we believe too!!" He loved experiencing sharing the gospel with others. :) Tomorrow we are going to meet again at the member's home with them!

Life is amazing and the Gospel is true. It is the only way to true happiness.

Vi voglio tanto bene!

Sorella Jameson

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

I love being a missionary

It has been quite nice here in Busto Arsizio - it just barely started to get hot which is OKAY with me!! Last summer was killer! We bought some popsicles to help us stay cooler in the hot weather. :) Speaking of food... we planned a ward activity for this weekend. A COOK OFF!!! :) It is going to be so great because Italians are super prideful of their food.

Oh my goodness... there have been so many miracles here in Busto!! We have officially found 17 new investigators since the beginning of the month. We don't even go for hours out to find. We just talk to everyone and help them feel a little bit of God's love for them. There are just people waiting and ready for the Gospel.

My miracle story for this email comes along with our scambio that we completed with Sorella Egbert yesterday in Busto Arsizio. I loved being with Sorella Egbert - she has always been an example to me. We went to teach our simpatizzanti M, the young woman that Sorella McPeek and I found my first Friday here in Busto. She is amazing and has been slowly progressing (even though she asks many questions based off of the Jehovah's Witness's beliefs.) We were finally able to have a lesson in her home and relied a lot on the Spirit to answer her questions - mostly on how to receive the answers to prayers and then the importance of the Book of Mormon. M LOVES the bible and believes so much in it that it is hard for her to understand why we need or even have the Book of Mormon. We shared the introduction with her again and just bore powerful witness to it's truth while stating our purpose. M accepted the baptismal date for the 6th of Settembre. We now have two baptismal dates here in Busto! One of which passed his interview for the 26th of July!

Ma (our baptismal date for the 26) is such an amazing person. He was introduced to the Gospel by his ex-girlfriend whom he was dating until late. Last week we had a lesson with him about the Prophet Joseph Smith and Thomas S. Monson and asked him if he knew that they were prophets called of God. He explained that he wasn't 100% confident in responding YES but he said that things are slowly making sense and that he feels good about it. We asked how he felt about the Book of Mormon. Mamma mia.... his response was amazing. "At first, I wanted to read the Book of Mormon because of curiosity. But the more I read it, the more I felt my soul being filled with peace. Now I read it because it FILLS my soul and it is a need." We explained to M that THIS is the Spirit bearing witness of the truth of the Book Of Mormon. He knows it is true. And because he knows the Book Of Mormon is true, he then knows that the Prophet Joseph Smith was truly called of God. Later that week we taught about the Priesthood organization in the church and then he received a blessing of comfort. On Sunday, we had a practice interview with him for his actual baptismal interview. Tears ran down his face as he expressed his faith and the importance that this has to him. At the very end, we asked if there was anything that he needed. He only shook his head and said in tears how grateful he was for us and our time to bring this happiness to him. :)

One thing that I have been trying to focus on the last few weeks of my mission is to just use the Spirit. While I was on my Scambio with Sorella Egbert I could literally feel peace and love radiating off of her because she was a pure conductor of the Spirit. What I had noticed from her was that she was a natural missionary that followed the higher law, if you will. It was beautiful! She studied so intently, prayed so fervantly, and followed the schedule exactly. The Spirit was with us and it was strong. But we still had fun and laughed. I want to make this a part of my life ALWAYS and not just the last few weeks of the mission. :)

Malpensa Airport Hahahahaha
Adventure story: Today we went up to Como but before we left I sliced my thumb open with the kick stand on my bike. Note to self. Never try to put the kick stand down with your hands. It is called a kick stand for a reason. Then on our way back, we took the wrong train and ended up at the Malpensa Airport. I know that Sorella McPeek's mom got an email from Mom asking her to tell Sorlla McPeek to keep me from getting trunky but it didn't work.... :) Hahaha just kidding. It was actually really funny to end up there so close to the end of my mission.

I love being a missionary. We have a message of happiness and JOY! We are not here to convince ANYONE only to bring them closer to Christ. That is why we have the Book of Mormon. That is why we have a Prophet Joseph Smith. That is why we have the restored Gospel. It doesn't matter what the name of God is. It doesn't matter that Revelations states at the end that nothing can be added. What matters is JESUS CHRIST.

Vi voglio tanto bene!!

Sorella Jameson
Como Lake

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

It all comes back to one thing

Things are so great right now!!! Life feels a little bit weird because I know that a month from now I will be home. When we do planning and pick dates for different things I have to take a step back and remember that I am almost done. During the last General Conference, there was a talk about 4 minutes called Your 4 Minutes. Your Four Minutes I heard this talk when I had a bout 4 months left in the mission and I thought about how I had only 4 minutes to make my best performance happen. Now I am down to my last minutes. I want to make it count more than ever and I want to work hard. Busto Arsizio has given me this chance to do so - there is SO much happening!!!

My companion and I. She braided my hair!
Last week was a little bit crazy because it doesn't feel like summer. It felt like spring time or fall. Our 4th of July resulted in soup eating and Hot Chocolate drinking. We just laughed under all of the rain fall and the cold weather. (We are so much happier in this weather anyway) We found 7 total new simpatizzanti last week and 2 this week - one everyday. It is incredible!! Now we are trying to meet with them again to set baptismal dates. :) We are still trying to work with M - the African from last week. Her mother is Jehovah's Witness so she asks really deep questions from the bible that we honestly cannot even answer. But then it all comes back to one thing - the Restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ. If all of this is true, then we have the revelation of the Plan of Salvation, we have clarification from the Bible, and we have the comfort of knowing that there is no confusion anymore. I love the church!!!

We have an amazing story with a family that we have tried to start working with. F was a referral from the United States and she recently returned from a study abroad program from Cedar City. She has asked us to try to work with her family because she would like ALL of them to be part of the church. (She is currently an investigator as well). During our visit on Saturday, her father N sat down and started to ask many questions about the church. At the end of the conversation he said that he is very content with our visits and that with time, they will all decide to become part of this "Mormon church" as well. :) He knows our purpose and is open. We pray to work more with them and help them come unto Christ. :)
Italian fast food!

I just wanted to share a little video that my companion shared with me this morning.

Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind

I love you!!!

Sorella Jameson

PS: Please pray for F and her family! Also for M - he is our Baptismal Date for the 26th of July.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

God works in mysterious ways

I do not have very much time because I was chatting and reading a TON of emails. But I have to say that it was amazing finding F. When I first got here, I was asking Sorella McPeek about the simpatizzanti that we have and the work. There is not much here. They have been only getting around 5 to 7 lessons a week and only found 3 people the month of June as new simps. One of them was F. While Sorella McPeek was explaining the story, all of the memories from Brad's e-mails hit me. Oh. My. Gosh. I told my companion about the crazy connection and told her that I had to meet F. We biked out 30 minutes to "stop by" and I asked her if she knew Elder Christensen. She smiled and said yes. I jumped up and down and hugged her. God works in mysterious ways. It was so hard to leave Alessandria with all the work to do there, with the people that I loved, and with the city that held so many special memories but I have to remember that this is the Lord's work. Not mine. I know that I am called to be here for a reason.

(A friend of Codi's, Brad Christensen, is serving a mission in Utah. This winter he met F, who was a foreign exchange student, and he reached out to Codi to see if she could help find F's family in Italy. Of course Codi would end up teaching her in Italy!!)

This was a message from my mission Presidente....

We do want someone to bring these investigators the rest of the way home. You will do great in your new assignment as well. You, sister Hoffman and Sister Gunnerson will all make your mark on Alessandria.

I am so grateful for my companions too. Sorella Hoffman taught me way more than I could have ever taught her. She is my inspiration as I go forward here in Busto. Sorella McPeek is absolutely AMAZING. She is HILARIOUS and has many interests that are similar to me. So we laugh throughout the day (like on Sunday when we were literally walking through flooded roads, and followed by drunk men in the stations.)

WOW!!! We have had SOOOO many miracles these last few days in Busto!!! Since arriving here on Thursday, we have taught MANY lessons and have found 6 new simpatizzanti! :) The Lord has been placing them in our pathway and we are just talking to everyone - in between lessons, on the train, on the way to eat gelato. One of these simpatizzanti is M. We stopped her on our way home for lunch. I just HAD to talk to her! She is from Cameroon and she is 23 years old. Years ago, she met with the missionaries and the only thing that she remembers is the Law of Chastity. M explained that this is something that she 100% agrees with too! We have met with her a second time and she accepted the soft invitation for baptism.

Things are great here. I love it! I know that this is the Lords work and I am called to be His servant. There are moments when I forget that and think about me - like leaving Alessandria. But I know that He wants something that is better for me, for His children, and for His work.

I love being a missionary. I love Busto Arsizio. I love Sorella McPeek. I love everything. It doesn't mean that things are easy, just that I find the joy in the midst of the work.


Sorella Jameson :)
Leaving Alessandria... with one of the 4 cakes I received. There is a picture of two cakes that I got too - one was pineapple and the other pear I think. Mamma mia... no more cake!!! 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Leaving Alessandria and Ending with all my heart, might, mind, and strength

I got a transfer call from Presidente on Monday to go to Busto Arsizio. It is west of Milano. I have never heard of it before! He released me as Sister Training Leader and thanked me for the wonderful, wonderful work that I have done and has asked me to continue to help the work go forth in my next city. I will be with Sorella McPeek who I know a little bit (she is from Sorella Andromidas's group and is sooooo cute) Sorella Hoffman will be staying in Alessandria for a 5th transfer. The poor thing already said goodbye to everyone and packed her bags. Presidente told her that she needs to finish what she got started. My goodness did she start a beast. Presidente put two crazy people together when we were called to be STL's here. We have done SOOOOO much together and love each other sooo much. Saturday night we both cried together about leaving. We feel like we have become sisters. We are sisters.

This transfer news however really upset me. I cried all Monday thinking about the people that I fell in love with on the first day here. It didn't seem fair. One of the reasons why it was hard too was that I felt like I didn't fulfill my purpose here. I thought "what was I supposed to do here?" I asked sweet Anziano Johnson (my BFF who followed me up from Pisa - I am REALLY going to miss him too) to give me a blessing. It was powerful. He said that the Lord has blessed me by showing my how His hand is extended into His work. Now it was my job to do the same thing in my next area. Many other things were said but that is what impacted me the most. Alessandria was a DREAM. It felt like I had walked in the District (film) but this was the first time that I felt like I wasn't doing much of what Sorella Jameson was meant to do. (Do you remember me sending you that letter about what I thought was my purpose. I have always walked into struggling units that needed help. Alessandria was helping me.) Sorella Hoffman is INCREDIBLE. She has taught me sooooo much about VISION and what can be done with the FAITH of a hard working missionary. She is going to move mountains and change Italia. My purpose here? To train Sorella Hoffman how to be an STL. I did it. Now it is time to move on. This is the Lord's work. Not mine. While I am sad, I am also excited to go forward and do His will.

Something else that I have learned from this humbling experience is that the Priesthood is real and amazing. I love getting blessing. God loves and KNOWS every single one of us individually. He has always answered my prayers and always will.

Last week, we received a referral from our Bishop. Actually, an entire family. E L is the sister of one of our other simpastizzante who is married to a member. We went on Wednesday night to visit them. It was amazing. E has been sooooo ready to join our church for years but has needed to fix several things. Now, she is ready and wanting to be baptized. Her, her husband G and their two younger daughters, G and S all accepted baptism for the 20 Luglio, the same day as E. We have gone back to visit several times and they are reading the Book of Mormon together as a family every night. :) Miracles are happening here in Alessandria and Sorella Hoffman is the perfect person to see them through to the end.

To finish, we will be having a baptism on Sunday for E B. Oh how I love her so much! We set a baptismal date with her the first Sunday that I arrived and now she is getting baptized. Anziano Ostergar and Speiser started teaching her almost a year ago.

I have 6 weeks left... going into my last transfer and I hope to work with all my heart, might, mind, and strength. The Gospel is restored and real.


Sorella Jameson

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Genova - where it all began

SUUUUPER Fast!! I am so sorry but we have a train to catch so that I can go to GENOVA for PDAY!!! I get to see it again!! SO excited!!!

On Monday, we had about half of our appointments fall through, including a family home evening. Trying to re-schedule a family home evening last minute always seems to be a little difficult. We went forward with the Spirit however and tried to follow the guidance to where we need to go. After an activity with GANS (we sang at a rehabilitation center) we decided to pass by a part member family. As we were teaching a lesson on the My Family Booklets, we brought up the importance of the VISION behind the booklet. Eternity with our family. We asked the famiglia Z what their vision is and what they need to do to accomplish it. Sorella Z, who is not a member, explained that she wanted an eternal family but that she needed to be baptized first. We set a baptismal date with her for the 20th of July - her father's birthday. :)

Other miracles: Sorella Hoffman found a family in the rain while we were doing splits with the GANS. They are soooo elect and accepted baptism!!!!

OOOO and one more thought to add...

From Jesus the Christ

Prayer is made up of the heart throbs and the righteous yearnings of the soul, of supplication based on the realization of need, of contrition and pure desire. :)  

I love you alll soooo much!!

Sorella Jameson :)

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The BEST thing that you could do

WOW!!! It is hot and humid. And yet I seem to have more energy than I have had in a LONG time. Last summer just about killed me. Especially since we were in buses. All. Day. Long. It is so nice to be on bikes.

This past week was difficult. Not miracle wise or number wise. Spiritually and emotionally, yes. We were scheduled to have a baptism on Saturday but on Thursday morning, during scambio, we received a text message from J (the simp) that she would not be baptized until her boyfriend arrived in the next month. I was shocked and felt a little lost without the help of my companion. It was a sensitive situation that required a lot of faith, patience, and strength. We were really afraid that Joy would never get baptized because her boyfriend is VERY controlling. When we went over to teach her that morning, she called him and handed me the phone to talk to him. WHAT?! What in the world is a little, white, American girl going to do about it? He was very kind but also extremely dominating.The whole time I prayed to have the courage to say what the Lord needed me to say. I explained that this was J's choice and not his but he replied saying that he TOLD J that she needed to wait, so she was going to wait. Finally I said, "No... this is not her decision. YOU told her what to do. She needs to do what God wants her to do and we both have to respect that decision."  In the end, J did not get baptized but I personally gained a deeper relationship with the Holy Ghost as I gave all to Him. We also believe that this is a better chance that we have to teach J so that her baptism will only solidify her conversion. :)

At the end of the week, we looked back and saw how much the Lord helped up. We climbed our mountain and feel so strong and triumphant. My companion and I are so much closer now too. We love being with each other.

On Sunday, I got to talk with a GANS si chiama Nephi. He is 21 years old and is working right now. During church he was ordained the Melchizedek priesthood. So I asked him what he was going to do with this priesthood.

Nephi - "I know what answer you are trying to get out of me..." he said, giving me the ' you are so sneaky' smile.  I smiled back and waited. "Well I hope to serve God and bless my family. And... if chance permits, serve a mission."

Me - "Ahhh okay. What do you mean 'if chance permits'?" I asked. He then explained that he is currently working, to help support his family and to establish a better future for the family to come. I continued, "I can promise you, as a missionary, that the BEST thing that you could do for your future family, is to serve a mission." I felt the spirit so strongly inside of me as I promised him that. Then I explained the blessing of Aunt K and what she has done for us. :)

Nephi - "Thank you for your advice.I will think about it..." he told me as we left that evening.

The experience left an impression in my heart.

I just wanted to end sharing some verses of 3 Nephi 19. It really impacted me this morning as I read that Jesus prayed for us...

19 And it came to pass that Jesus departed out of the midst of them, and went a little way off from them and bowed himself to the earth, and he said:
 20 Father, I thank thee that thou hast given the Holy Ghost unto these whom I have chosen; and it is because of their belief in me that I have chosen them out of the world.
 21 Father, I pray thee that thou wilt give the Holy Ghost unto all them that shall believe in their words.
 22 Father, thou hast given them the Holy Ghost because they believe in me; and thou seest that they believe in me because thou hearest them, and they pray unto me; and they pray unto me because I am with them.
 23 And now Father, I pray unto thee for them, and also for all those who shall believe on their words, that they may believe in me, that I may be in them as thou, Father, art in me, that we may be one.
 24 And it came to pass that when Jesus had thus prayed unto the Father, he came unto his disciples, and behold, they did still continue, without ceasing, to pray unto him; and they did not multiply many words, for it was given unto them what they should pray, and they were filled with desire.
 25 And it came to pass that Jesus blessed them as they did pray unto him; and his countenance did smile upon them, and the light of his countenance did shine upon them, and behold they were as white as the countenance and also the garments of Jesus; and behold the whiteness thereof did exceed all the whiteness, yea, even there could be nothing upon earth so white as the whiteness thereof.
 26 And Jesus said unto them: Pray on; nevertheless they did not cease to pray.
 27 And he turned from them again, and went a little way off and bowed himself to the earth; and he prayed again unto the Father, saying:
 28 Father, I thank thee that thou hast purified those whom I have chosen, because of their faith, and I pray for them, and also for them who shall believe on their words, that they may be purified in me, through faith on their words, even as they are purified in me.
 29 Father, I pray not for the world, but for those whom thou hast given me out of the world, because of their faith, that they may be purified in me, that I may be in them as thou, Father, art in me, that we may be one, that I may be glorified in them.
 30 And when Jesus had spoken these words he came again unto his disciples; and behold they did pray steadfastly, without ceasing, unto him; and he did smile upon them again; and behold they were white, even as Jesus.

I love you alll soooooooo much!!! Sorry for the lack of pictures....:)

Sorella Jameson

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

I am so glad to be wearing a name tag

Soooooooo I have been having really crazy dreams these past few nights. Last night I dreamed that I was home from my mission but I wasn't ready of course to be home. It is kind of like what happened at the beginning of my mission. Although it is something that I do not want to think about, I will be home in 2 months. Crazy huh? Sorella Hoffman is the PERFECT companion to be with right now because she is helping me in so many ways for the future. Especially because we are just working like crazy. Why? Because we have a vision to fulfill. :)

Last week we were supposed to have a scambio with Torino but we couldn't due to train strikes, we Sorella Hoffman and I were just together. Meno male... we had so many crazy things happen.

Wow... one of the biggest miracles that I found personally this week came from a referral si chiama A. One of the GANS brought to the Sunday Serata Familiare, his friend from England. There are people that we can meet every once in a while that you feel an immediate connection with - this is how it felt with A. I could feel the love of Christ through me as I talked to her. She is a very confused and lost soul searching for happiness in this life. I know how and from whom she can gain this happiness. Jesus Christ and His Gospel. We have another lesson with her tomorrow. :) A is a fashion stylist in London. She is working her way up to be a big shot in the media and model world. It is so interesting how we can see people like her and think that they have it all - money, fame, beauty. And yet we discover that they are simple people just like us. She is just a simple ragazza who is searching for happiness and just doesn't know where to find it.

This past weekend we also had several meal appointments with potential investigators. The people here in Alessadria are SO kind that they literally invite us to come over for dinner after the first meeting. Both appointments left us stupefied, if you will. I saw very clearly who I am as a missionary in this work. These people were sooooo kind and wonderful but only wanted friendship. Unfortunately, that is not what we are here to do - we are here to invite others to come unto Christ. They rejected this invitation and thanked us for the time we gave to get to know them. That was it. The doors closed. My heart broke a little bit because of how incredible these people are - they are kind loving, giving, children of God. If I was not wearing a name tag, it would have been different. In the end, I am so glad to be wearing a name tag. To bring such an important message to the world. It was also such an important lesson that I learned for my future as a member of the church. It is also up the "normal" members to help invite and prepare their friends to accept the Gospel.

To finish, here is an article in the Liahona about my nonna in Genova!!! Paola Fava. :)
Nonna Fava

Vi voglio tanto bene!!!!

Sorella Jameson

PS: Sorry for no pictures.... hopefully I will get some soon. :)

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

People are so ready to hear the gospel

I don't have much time because I got onto the computer late. But that is okay. :)

Sooooo we got 37 lessons this week, 22 were member present! Our district of 3 sets of missionaries taught 102 total. One of these sets is opening!!! It is sooooo amazing! People are so ready to hear the gospel here! Not just that, Sorella Hoffman and I are "believers." Cioè, we believe that ANYTHING is possible if we have faith, hope, and charity. Last week, Sorella Hoffman told me, "What was Presidente thinking putting the two of us together?" Hahahaha. Seriously though.... I love being with Sorella Hoffman. We feel like we are sisters together. There is honesty and communication between us and we teach so well together. I love it. But then again, I have loved ALL of my companions. :)

This week has been absolutely insane. Our entire district has been working so hard to go above and beyond in lessons and preparing people for baptism. We specifically focused this week on setting baptismal date (we set 3 and 1 more yesterday) People have been coming fully prepared for us to teach and prepare for baptism. :) Right now we have 6 baptimals dates, one for every week starting next week until the first week of July. Please pray that all of these will come through!!! :)

I just wanted to share a quick thought before I have to sign off. This morning I was reading the Ensign and came across an article about communication within marriage. If there is one thing that I have learned as a missionary being with someone else 24/7, I have learned the importance of open, loving communication. Please read this article below...

Speak, Listen, and Love

"As you incorporate these communication principles in your marriage, you may also want to apply them to your relationship with Heavenly Father. Many people communicate with God at a superficial level. If you pray out of duty or use habitual phrases, you may find it difficult to connect with Heavenly Father and He will feel distant. Communicating with God is different from just talking to Him. President Joseph F. Smith (1838–1918) taught: “We do not have to cry unto him with many words. We do not have to weary him with long prayers. … Let the prayer come from the heart, let it not be in words that are worn into ruts in the beaten tracks of common use, without thought or feeling in the use of those words.”

Do you share with your Heavenly Father your innermost beliefs, feelings, and desires? Have you shared with Him the secret ambitions that lie in your heart? Can you pour out your heart to Him? And do you practice listening for His responses?

Today!! Sicilian canoli :)
Sincere words spoken in humble prayer will allow you to develop a deeper connection with Heavenly Father. Listening for and implementing His counsel will enrich and strengthen the relationship. As you express gratitude for specific blessings, live the gospel, and become more like Jesus Christ, you will demonstrate your love for Heavenly Father."

The church is so true. I feel it everyday as I speak of the Restoration. The Spirit bears testimony to my heart and mind every hour of each day and helps in His great work.

VI voglio TANTO bene!!!

Sorella Jameson

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

It is the last little bit that I can do

It is an absolute DREAM to be here in Alessandria!!! Oh. My. Gosh!!! There is so much work here!!! Which is fantastic because all that I want to do is give my whole heart and soul into my last 2 transfers. Sophie wrote, telling me how the last 2 transfers are GREAT because you FINALLY know how to work as a missionary. It is soooo true. I have already hit the ground running here and am putting everything I got into this city. After all... it is the last little bit that I can do.

Sorella Hoffman is sooooo similar to me too. We both want to work!! And we have very similar personalities which is crazy. Imagine how Brenna is a firecracker and then add that to my personality. Ecco Sorella Hoffman. We have so much to do here together and have much FAITH for the things that will happen. This week we have planned for 31 lesson.... the most that I have every gotten was 22. We can do it!!!!

Oh my goodness.... Alessandria is so FULL of miracles, it is literally blowing my mind! I cannot believe how ready these people are for the gospel - both the members and those searching. On Sunday we had an amazing miracle with one of our progressing investigators. After watching the CES fireside, we taught her about Enduring to the End. She has a testimony of the church, is already integrated into the GANS (single adults), and has the biggest desire to go to the temple. We had with us a newly baptized young man who expressed all of his fears and concerns when he was about to be baptized. It was the perfect setting and the Spirit was so strong!!! After some concerns and resolving, she set her own baptismal date for the 15th of June!!! Right before leaving for home, we offered a prayer of gratitude. 5 minutes until 9 pm, we found, taught, and set a baptismal date with A. Ahhhhh the Lord is so great!!!

Saying goodbye to Pisa was hard. I didn't feel like I was ready to leave yet but it needed to happen. Now that I am here, I know this is what I am supposed to be doing. :)

Codi and Jarom, right before she went into the MTC
Funny story. The other night, I was trying to call the Mestre Sister Training Leaders for something. I pulled out a card that had information of all the leaders in the mission and dialed their number. Who answered? Anziano Sloan in COMO. I was so confused and told him that I was Sorella Jameson. He repeated my name and someone screamed in the background. Anziano Ostergar. Oh how I love that Anziano!!!
He is so much like Jarom - it was literally like having a brother. Anziano Ostergar picked up the phone and I immediately told him that I am not apostate. Hahahah so funny. :)

Please pray for the Dibbs.

Sorella Jameson :)

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

There must be something that I must do

Transfer News!!!!! I am going to be transferred to Alessandria to open an STL companionship. We will be over the sisters in the Torino and Alessandria Zones. This means that I will be able to do exchanges with GENOVA!!!! AHHH!!! It is exciting but also very sad. I was not prepared to go, in all honesty. Sorella Bennett and I are so sad to leave each other again. Things are just starting to pick up here!! Miracles are happening!! S is going to be baptized!!! But there must be something that I must do. I was also wanting be a normal missionary but I think I might end being an STL. Can't complain! I am doing the Lord's work!!!

WE ARE A STAKE!!!! I got to see all of my very favorite people too!!! It was amazing to see Sorella Lemos as well. :)

Seeing Ariele was probably the best moment of my life though. Pisa was made a ward too. :) Presidente Dibb explained that when a Stake is established, the Church is established in that area to STAY!! Florence has the Church of Jesus Christ to STAY!!! :)

After we skyped, Sorella Bennett got sick again (eating pesto lasagna was not the best idea) so we went straight home. This week has been a little rough for us due to a virus or food poisoning that hit all of the Pisa missionaries. We were "out of duty" if you will for the whole weekend. Yet the Lord has still blessed us so much in His work. Yesterday we had a chance to visit our baptismal date, S. She has been avoiding us this past week but we were finally able to find out why. She was not quite ready for her baptism (that was supposed to take place this weekend) and didn't want to tell us until she felt ready. We had a beautiful lesson, resetting the date and encouraging her to prepare. We promised that the Lord will help her arrive to this point if she puts her trust in him. :) Later in the evening we had a birthday party with Michael Israel.... oh how I will miss him soooo much!

Sorella Bennett's favorite expression of mine. :)
There is not too much more to tell. I know that I don't have much time left but I am excited to come home to get a big hug from my family. :) Moments that matter most!

Vi voglio bene!!

Sorella Jameson

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Change for the better

This past week was so beautiful!! :) I had a wonderful birthday with my companion and with many wonderful members. :) We went to lunch with the famiglia Perez (I am sure that she has posted pictures already.) Mamma mia... she makes some reeeeeeal good food! Then we went with S for a gelato.

We finished with some dinner with the famiglia G (another Brazilian member) and headed to Firenze for the night. The next day we had consiglio where I got a bunch of birthday cards. Thank you sooooo much for all of the birthday cards. Especially the one that you made from all of my friends. :) I love hearing from all of these loved ones in my life. Sophie sent me a fantastic birthday card as well.

The day before, we went to Volterra for Pday. Oh my heck... BEST PDAY EVER!!! We went with the sorelle of Montevarchi. Volterra is a beautiful medieval city that is in the middle of the hills of tuscana. :) Also, this is the famous city from Twilight when Edward goes to "kill himself". Hahaha but it really was such a beautiful city. Sorella Bennett bought me earrings made of Alabaster stone from Volterra. :)

This past week we saw MANY miracles!! One of the most tender miracles was when we were teaching the law of chastity to our simpatizzante, L. She has loved almost everything that we have taught her, especially this lesson. Before we taught it, she expressed how she really admires how we wait until after marriage to share intimate relationships. As we were teaching, we talked about how we are all children of God. He loves us so much and does not want us to be selling our beautiful bodies. L loved every second of the lesson and has asked us to come over so that we can try teaching her husband as
well. :)

This weekend we had an amazing lesson with a family from Equador. Miriam is a member for many years but could not find the church here in Italia. She hasn't come for 10 years but still has a burning testimony. Her husband, C, is not a member of the church but has agreed for the first time to sit and listen to the missionaries. When Miriam found out that there was a church here in Pisa, she was beyond joyful!!! When her husband saw how incredibly happy she was, he decided to come as well and visit. :) We taught him on Sunday and he expressed his desire to hopefully be baptized. :)

Funny Story: we had a lesson with B and Michael again. We almost had another African showdown but this time not between them and the gospel. After the lesson, they walked us to the train station. Michael began talking to his friend who was 100% drunk. When his friend saw us, he staggered towards us. We backed up and he took a swipe at Sorella Bennett. She stepped back again but he still tried coming towards her and even grabbed her name tag. Michael shoved him off and was trying to keep him back. (I will explain in more detail on Sunday) Bishop was SOOOO upset!!! He told the man to just try it again so that he could beat him up. Oh man...we are soooo happy to have our African friends. :)

Sorella Bennett and I re-enacting the scene from Twilight :)  
We had an amazing conference with Elder Snow and Elder Kearon for the Firenze Zone. One thing that the Area Presidency wants us to focus on is to stay close to the New Converts. We have been asked to do My Family booklets with them. Have you seen these? I was really touched as we listened to the words at this conference. I only have 3 months left. Yesterday was my 15 month mark. As I look back to the past 15 months that I have completed, I stand in awe of how much God has changed me for the better. I only want to serve him with my all and my best. The Gospel is amazing. We have reason to rejoice. :)

I wanted to share an important link with all...

Hastening the work. Members & Missionaries


Sorella Jameson

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The African Showdown

Okay I don't have a lot of time because I got many beautiful emails from my dear friends and loved ones. Thank you!!! I am excited for my birthday tomorrow but I think that I am more excited for the special conference that is coming up in May when Florence becomes a STAKE!!!! :)

This week has been crazy like always but soooo good too. :)

We forgot that Friday was Festivo and therefore did not plan our day out as well as we should have. All of our plans had fallen through but we still had many other miracles. One of which came by visiting our baptismal date, S. Oh my goodness... I love S sooooo much! While we talked to her about her baptism, she expressed how she is still preparing for the date. We reminded her that it is scheduled for the 10th of May. She thought about it, smiled and said, "Yes! I am ready! Oh I am so excited!" She has come consistently to church these past 4 week !!! :)

The next day, Saturday, we went to visit B with Michael. S, Bishop's wife, was there with us. Before, S hasn't shown a lot of interest in our message until this past lesson which we deem as the "African Showdown" Yes... it was a showdown indeed. We decided to be a lot more BOLD with our lesson to help them understand our purpose. SO we talked about Salvation and I said "B. and S. God is the ONE person. He has ONE church and ONE way to return to live with Him. That is THIS church. You can only return to live with God through this Church." Well... B flipped a little bit and then Michael Israel started bearing STRONG testimony of the truth. S looked at Michael and asked "You believe this is true Egbon?" When Michael said YES, S nodded her head and murmured Uh huh! In a very approving African way. In the end, Michael just said that the only way we can know if it is true or not is to pray. We cannot argue over it or ask others what they think. Only GOD knows the truth. Amen my brotha!

Also we went to do a double scambio in SIENA that week. Oh my gosh... it was BEAUTIFUL!!! Attached is a picture that we took at San Gimignano. We ate the World's best gelato. It was probably the best that I have ever had.

I will hopefully will write more next week!!!

Sorella Jameson

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

He was still within reach

EASTER!!!! And happy birthday to my sweet niece Iris and my daddy!!! :) I told everyone it was their birthdays. Also, Otto got baptized last year on the 20th. YAY!! :)

This Easter was amazing but also very tender. We had a stressful weekend due to one of our simps who found them self in a tough situation. I felt as it the weight of the world was on my back. So what did I do? Cried and prayed. I told Sorella Bennett that when this happens, I normally talk to my mom, cry, and sleep. But I couldn't do 2 of the 3. But praying to God is just a good (if not a little better - no hard feelings?) Our sacrament meeting was so incredible and full of the Spirit. I had the opportunity to talk about the Savior. During the weekend, I really felt the power of the Atonement working this weekend on me, my companion, and our loved simpatizzante. While preparing this talk, I felt my love for the Savior welling up inside of me. As I gave the talk, tears poured out of my eyes. Jesus Christ is amazing. I love him so much. It was amazing to ponder of His life, His example, His sacrifice, and His resurrection during this time as a servant of the Lord. Last year I was still jet lagged and had a migraine so I can't remember much). I know that whatever we go through, we can be strengthened and helped by the Lord if just come unto Him. I shared the scripture found in John 20

15 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.

 16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.

 17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

 18 Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her.

While I was in Jerusalem, I found myself facing the same thing. Searching for Jesus Christ, not realizing that He was still within reach. Then , when I found this, I knew that I had to SHARE it with others. There are so many people SEARCHING,  not knowing where to find Him. He is here. He is waiting.

This week has been another one of those crazy weeks when you look back and think to yourself "what happened?" We had many miracles however, especially on Monday evening as we were with a member. We had an appointment set up but then received a call saying that our simpatizzante (Q) was not in town. So we looked at our watches, saw that we had an hour until our next appointment and asked if the member would like to do some finding with us. She has been thinking about going on a mission but is still very shy about doing the "dirty work" of the mission life. Cioè, finding. But we starting to do some strada and found someone. After teaching them (a full 2 prayer lesson) and setting up a return appointment, the member expressed how easy it was to talk to others and share the love of God with them. :) Member missionary work - works!

Just to close, I love my companion and I love serving here in Pisa. There are so many miracles. I only have 3 and a half months left to serve the Lord and I want to give my ALL.

Sorella Jameson

Picture of Florence. We went to see Davide but the line was too long... sad. No matter! We ate Lindt gelato. Man was is goooood!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

I be missionary sista!

This week has been beautiful and amazing. :) We had interviews with Presidente on Saturday (who later told me that I picked up Sorella Stewart's accent hahaha) and then we went out with Sorella Dibb!! It was so much fun to do some lessons and drive around Pisa with the Mission President's wife. Mamma mia... she is sooooo funny too!!! Ready for the best news?

FIRENZE IS GOING TO BE A STAKE!!!!!! On May 10th and 11th, we will be made into the Stake of Florence. Isn't that incredible!!! We are sooooo excited for this historic event that will take place. Also, I think that we are combining with Rimini, which is where Forlì is!! So I might be able to see my loved people of Forlì. :) 

The work itself has been so wonderful this week. S our Nigerian simp, came to church again and just loves it! She is praying for the help and strength to prepare for her baptism in May. :)  We also had several Family Home Evening's with M and his family and with B and his family. And we ate more Nigerian food. (I should have taken a picture!!) We brought cinnamon apples with ice cream for dessert but they refused to eat it at first. Once they tried it, they fell in love and ate all of it! :) 

Funny story. On Sunday we went to Pontedera to meet up with M because we had left something at his home. There was a train strike going on so it took us forever to get there. By the time we got back home it was almost 8 but it was still light outside. While walking up to the bikes, I noticed that Sorella Bennett's bike was shorter than usual. That is when I saw it. Or rather didn't see it. No front wheel. SOOOOOO someone stole a wheel. We attached her bike to the back of my bike and walked 30 minutes home, through Centro with our bikes. Many people pointed and laughed. Our bike shop workers just shook their heads when we showed up. Again. We just have the best luck with bikes here in Pisa. :)

Yesterday we had a beautiful miracle with L. As noted a few weeks ago, she was a referral from the Anziani who had contacted her last summer. We had an amazing lesson with her last time and this time. For the lesson yesterday, we watched the Restoration film. Her eyes were wide the entire time and she agreed with the quotes from the film. There wasn't even any kind of disturbance during the first vision (which always seems to happen). It was perfect! At the end of the film, she expressed how beautiful it was and how much sense it made to have another prophet today. Lina then expressed that her beliefs were different than ours. We live in a different world, cioè, we live the commandments that we teach. This gives us inner peace and glow of happiness. She explained that her religion had an "eat, drink, and be merry" feeling about it. We re-set her baptismal date for the 24 of May. :)

To finish, I actually just want to share a little reminder of the WHY of Easter.  It is for Jesus Christ. Easter is just as important as Christmas and we should keep it sacred and special.  In Luke 22:19, Christ asked us to take the sacrament and remember him. Elder Jeffery R. Holland expressed some ways that we could remember him.... 

We could remember Christ’s miracles and his teachings, his healings and his help. We could remember that he gave sight to the blind and hearing to the deaf and motion to the lame and the maimed and the withered. Then, on those days when we feel our progress has halted or our joys and views have grown dim, we can press forward steadfastly in Christ, with unshaken faith in him and a perfect brightness of hope (see 2 Ne. 31:19–20).
We could remember that even with such a solemn mission given to him, the Savior found delight in living; he enjoyed people and told his disciples to be of good cheer. He said we should be as thrilled with the gospel as one who had found a great treasure, a veritable pearl of great price, right on our own doorstep. We could remember that Jesus found special joy and happiness in children and said all of us should be more like them—guileless and pure, quick to laugh and to love and to forgive, slow to remember any offense.

Please click on the following link to see a PERFECT Easter message!

I am so grateful for the Savior Jesus Christ and for the sacrifice that he has made for me. For all of us. All that we have to do it COME unto Him. And we can! We have His church restored once again on the Earth today and can truly come unto him. 


Sorella Jameson

P.S.  am learning African English :) I be missionary sista! Abi no be lie?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Conference and babies

WOW! It has been CRAZY these last few days!! I had to stay up in Milano all Thursday and Friday due to transfers and Consiglio with our Presidente. We didn't get back until Friday night (with out Sorella Bennett's luggage) So she borrowed my clothes until Monday. :) Then we had General Conference. Not much missionary work got done but Sorella Bennett and I tried our best to find and teach people during the days of travel. :)

YES!!!! We are together again!!!! It has been so much fun and so surreal too. We have both grown up so much but still know how to have fun. :) Also I got to see Sorella Stephens AND Sorella Andromidas during what is called Transfer circle. AHHHHH I was talking to Sorella Stephens when someone grabbed me and whirled me around. It was Sorella Andromidas. I SCREAMED and just held onto her. We couldn't go away from one another. It was like we were glued together.

This past week has been a little crazy due to lost time in Milano and time spent for conference but we still saw many miracles. On of our biggest miracles was with our simpatizzante B. He is a father of a family that our member referred to us and is amazing. On Saturday, he came to General Conference with Michael (the member) here in church. Right after the session, he said, "I need to get a testimony of this book." He was holding the Book of Mormon. AMEN!! We later had a lesson with him to follow-up. As we were teaching, I felt impressed to speak extremely simple and clear words. "B," I said, "there is only One God. This means He has only One church. THIS is the One and only church that will bring you back to him." He laughed and asked if I said those words because I believed them or because it was my church. We bore strong testimony that it was true. I would not have given up 18 months of my life and spend thousands of dollars if it were not true. He smiled and told us that our words touched him. He has committed to REALLY pray to know the truth and to understand the Book of Mormon.

ALSO, Friday morning we received a call from M, our pregnant simp. She said "Please! The baby is coming! Can you find someone for me?" I frantically called everyone who lived in Pisa to ask for a ride. It was 7 am. I finally called the president of the branch who told me to wait while he got ready. I was running around in the apartment in Milano, helpless to do anything. In the end, her sister picked her up. Now we have a sweet baby girl who sleeps while we teach M. I must take a picture next time.

My favorite conference talks were many but I loved the one by Zwick, Uchtdorf, Ballard, and Bednar of course. :) I am so grateful for the chance that we have to hear from living prophets today. The world is getting a little scary right now but we can have peace and safety through our Savior.


Sorella Jameson

PS: We made a Sunday dinner for conference. It was good.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Worn hands, fence sitting, and Colorado in Italy!

Okay so here is the news. My sweet Sorella Stewart is going home. I am so sad that she is leaving. It feels as if the mission will no longer go on without her. But I must say that I have a developed a friendship for the rest of my life. She is one of those amazing, faithful people that you know will always be there for you (like Rabea) . I love Sorella Stewart!!! So who is coming to be my new companion? Are you ready? Sorella Bennett. Yep... that is right. The same Sorella Bennett that I served with already in Forlì (so I won't have a new comp but I will have a new experience!) I was shocked! I asked if the information was correct or if it was an April Fool's joke. Nope. It is weird to think that I will be with someone who I know and served with already. That being said, we have both grown and are in different situations now. It is going to be AMAZING. :)

Saying goodbye to the Rossi family before leaving Forli
Now there are some other, sad things that I wanted to share. As I am sure you have seen or heard from the Jefferies (who are now home), Fratello Rossi passed away last week. Sorella Jefferies called me on Thursday morning to tell me that he had passed and my heart broke. It was a shock. I just wanted to write a little dedica to him. Fratello Rossi was one of the most amazing people that I have ever met. He was a great missionary at heart, always willing and ready to help people come unto the Christ. There was always a smile or a kind word that he shared with others. Fratello Rossi was also one of the hardest workers that I have ever met - his hands were wonderful examples of this. Well worn and continually working. I will miss Fratello Rossi but I know that he is doing an amazing work on the other side. :)

The work in Pisa is picking up and we are seeing so many miracles! Sorella Stewart and I have worked so hard to make changes and bring HOPE. This past domenica, we had a break the fast to end our 40 day fast, focused on missionary work in the Pisa Branch. It was BEAUTIFUL! We had more people there that I have ever seen (90!) and had a beautiful fast and testimony meeting. One of our simpatizzante came for the first time and even stood up to share her testimony of Jesus Christ. It was amazing! The branch was the most united that I have seen that day. :)

The simpatizzante who came to church is absolutely AMAZING!!! Her name is S - she is also from Nigeria and I love her so much! (She also thinks that I have a really cool voice... yes!) While she was at church, Fratello Ostrander (an American member) asked what she thought of church - if it was true or not. This got her thinking because she realized that she cannot be a fence sitter and not decide. So she went home that night and REALLY prayed to know if the Book of Mormon was true and if the church was true. When we met up with her Tuesday morning, she started to tell us that she had a dream. At first she didn't want to tell because she thought we would think that she was crazy. In her dream, she say a man kneeling over brass plates. He was wearing red and black armor. Who was this? Moroni. She pointed to the picture in the front of the Book of Mormon and said it was similar to that. In the dream, Moroni told her not to mess with the Book because it was important. When she woke up, she told her friend, M (our other simp) that the Book of Mormon was true. S explained that she had not truly prayed to know if these things were true and had regarded the Book of Mormon as something below the bible or not important. But when she TRULY prayed, God answered her prayer. She had prayed with "real intent" (Moroni 10:4). Her baptismal date is for the 10th of May. :)

I LOVE Sorella Stewart!!
Really fast and funny story! I met a woman from Tamra's (my mama's sister) ward the other day! We were heading towards a member's home for lunch on Monday, a day of the transfer that we normally don't leave due to deep cleaning. But we left and met this woman! We heard "Sister!! Sister!" so I stopped and Sorella Stewart almost crashed into me. I turned to find a happy woman walking towards me, so I called back "Ciao?!" a little confused. When we met up, I was trying to take off my helmet but it got caught on my earring. In the process of doing this, she asked if I was Tamra's niece. When I said yes, she screamed and hugged me. With my helmet still in one hand, I dropped my bike to hug her with the other. Oh it was hilarious and wonderful. :)

I love you so much!!! Thank you for your prayers and support!

Sorella Jameson

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

That is how it should be

Once again we had a fantastic week. Also an emotional one. We are approaching our final days together before Sorella Stewart goes home and it is a little sad. I know that I will be with her again but my goodness... you just get attached to your companions!! I am so blessed that the Lord has given me AMAZING companions and that I have loved every single one of them for THEM.

My fantastic companion!
Presidente Dibb came to our branch on Sunday and shared a short but powerful message about moving the work of the Lord forward. He said that we can do 3 simple things. 1 - PRAY. 2 - Read the Book of Mormon. 3 - Write our testimony in the BOM to give to our friends. I would like to invite you all to do the same thing. As he was talking, he pointed out how Pisa has 2 sets of amazing missionaries, then he mentioned that Sorella Stewart was going home soon. My eyes immediately started to fill up with tears. Managia.

Unfortunately, we did not have any simpatizzanti in church but we had many other amazing miracles, like FINDING one of our simps. M, the African woman, disappeared for almost 2 weeks. We tried visiting, calling, but she seemed to just have vanished. Finally we stopped by on Sunday and found her! She was sooo happy to see us and vice-versa. :) Here is the funniest part. When we were about to walk in, two Jehovah's Witnesses walked out. We stopped, and awkwardly smiled at each other. I think that they are fantastic people who have a lot of faith to do what they believe but my goodness.... At least they help share the word of God!

Last week, our member Michael Israel gave us a family for referrals. This week, we set a baptismal date with Bishop, the father of the family. Michael can baptize his friend too because he has the priesthood. He was explaining to us WHY he wanted his friend to be baptized - he said that he loved Bishop and wanted his life to be blessed. The gospel has CHANGED and blessed Michael so now he is determined to share it with others too. That is how it should be.

The beautiful Sorelle of Florence!
Last little thought. We had a beautiful conference with Presidente on Monday in Firenze. A member of the District Presidency bore his testimony to us about the beauty of the Restored Gospel. Oh my goodness.... it was so powerful. He explained that when he was baptized, he was called to serve in the Military. The only time of the day that he could study his scriptures was at the end of the day, when everyone was showering. He explained that "That which we desire to be, is exactly what we can do and become. " He wanted to be a good and faithful member of the church so that is exactly what he was able to do and become. So he read his scriptures every night, in the midst of men running around, preparing for bed. One night, at 2 in the morning, a fellow soldier woke him up and asked about the church, This soldier was too timid to ask in person so he waited til lights were out. Fratello Yanni (the man giving the testimony) stated "I am not an amazing person. I am only a member of the church with the desire to share the gospel with others." It is so simple and so beautiful.

Sorella Stewart and I in Lucca
We are so blessed to have a prophet today. To have the gospel restored with the blessings that come with it.

Also, we hit 20 lessons last week. :)

I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!

Sorella Jameson

An ancient brick wall

Jif peanut butter from our American members. YES!!!!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

It feels unreal because of how PERFECT it is!

MAMMA MIA!!!! This week has been so full of miracles and tender mercies. The Lord has blessed the area of Pisa sooo much. We are towards the end of a 40 day fast within the branch for Missionary Work. Every night, we also have a family prayer for missionary work too. The Anziani and us sorelle have been so blessed in finding and teaching new people. We taught 22 lessons last week. Miracle.

We had many miracles this week! This one happened on Monday as we were going to visit simpatizzanti who live FAR away from Pisa. We had planned our day so that we would have 2 hours in Pontederra - a little city about 15 minutes in train from Pisa but we felt we needed to stay there instead of going back to Pisa. (We had an appointment scheduled for the evening in Pontederra) So we called a member who lives in Pontederra and told him that we would be there, then asking if he knows of any friends that we could meet within those 2 hours. Michael Isreal (the member who is also one of the coolest Nigerians ever - literally everyone is friends with him) told us that he cannot think of anyone but told us he would pray to find someone. When we called back on Monday, asking if he thought of anyone. He said yes! So we met up with Michael, who then took us to a FAMILY to teach. It was BEAUTIFUL! To be honest, I did not think anything would happen (oh me of little faith) but I was willing to put a shot in the dark if you will and just TRY. That is what the Lord asks us to do. TRY.

Our biggest miracle of this week started last Wednesday evening. We planned on visiting the Fiorelli family - Presidente Fiorelli is the District President. I have always wanted to meet with them but they are rarely at church (due to travel around to all the other branches in the Firenze district). When we arrived to meet with the family, they informed us that the boyfriend of their less active daughter would be attending dinner with us that evening, thus giving us an opportunity to do some missionary work. :) We taught our lesson and Presidente Fiorelli explained how the feelings that Simone (the boyfriend) felt were from the Spirit. He then turned around to pull out a Book of Mormon from a book shelf full of copies of the Book Of Mormon and gave Simone the copy. We asked if Simone would like to learn more, to which he agreed. Monday evening we held a Serata Familiare with them, taught the Restaurazione and invited him to baptism, to which he also accepted. I have never experienced working with members in the this manner before - it feels unreal because of how PERFECT it is! We have another lesson for Next Monday. :)

I wanted to end my thoughts with the invitation to prepare and invite everyone to see General Conference. We have a living prophet in these modern days and it is BEAUTIFUL. Someone who receives guidance from our Father in Heaven and the Savior Jesus Christ. Someone with the same power of Moses, who parted the Red Sea.

 Just follow this link to General Conference!


Sorella Jameson

Giant chocolate eggs for Easter. We got some for the Anziani. :)

Our District!

Mission shoe woes