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