Saturday, 3 May 2014

Week Four in Albania

Hello family,

Well another week has passed, and it's passed rather quickly actually. Which is kind of nice.. Time is an interesting thing out here, that's for sure. It's been a pretty good week.. Now that I think of it a lot of things have happened. Mark, our investigator decided that he wanted to focus on school work and doesn't have time to meet anymore. It was really sad, because I just wanted to tell him how important this is and how everything in his life would be blessed through making covenants with his Heavenly Father. But, he's just not ready right now. But he asked if he could keep the Book of Mormon.. so, that's good.. Right? So, that was kind of a bummer.. But! We have a new investigator named Lediona, or Ledi.. She's like 16 years old and she's GOLDEN. Oh my goodness. She's like a sponge. Everything we tell her she just loves and feels so good about. She told us that she's gone to a bunch of churches and she just loves this one. (Po pra, this gospel rocks). She meets with us everyday and we have her baptismal date set for the 16th of May. So that's good. Otherwise, we have other investigators that aren't progressing as much but we're working with them.

I love the people here. They're so kind, and so loving. They really are such a humble people. The members are awesome. Everyday we get a call from a 14 year old girl in the ward named Fjori, and she calls to ask us what lessons she can help us with. The people here LOVE the missionaries. Fjori has taken to calling me Sister Barbie, so.. that's nice. Now the other youth.. including the young men.. have joined in too.. Vermunt is just too difficult for them or something.. I dunno, but it's funny.. I walk into the church and all you hear is "Barbie!!!!"  Haha, all I can say is.. if I look like Barbie to them they make them a whole lot different over here.. Yikes.. Hahaha. But anyway it's so cool because so many of the members here know Kent Barnard, and they just adore him.. So when they find out that I know him they just like insta love me and kiss my cheeks more, it's fun :) It's so amazing to see how much impact a missionary can have on people. It definitely motivates me to be the best person that I can for them. There's also Marcel.. He's such a stud. He reminds me so much of Jordan. It makes me miss home, But he's sweet.. I wanna try and teach his parents, so I told him I'd buy him a pizza if he can get them to meet with us. Hahaha. Tracting is for punks. I'm nailing this whole finding investigators thing.. ;) And then there's Motra Demiri. She's hilarious..  She's a lot to handle sometimes. Hahaha, but she calls me 'the baby' probably because I know nothing.. Haha, but she always just says "I love you so much honey" cause that's like all she knows in English. She's come to a few lessons with us this past week and she holds my hand everywhere we go. So funny.

Sometimes I'm like, holy crap.. I'm in Albania. What! It's so different here. I'm so grateful for the opportunity that I have to experience a different culture. I already have learned so much. Yesterday in church we had to introduce ourselves in front of the ward and when they announced it I was like.. Flip. But, I got up there and just spoke.. And after the sacrament meeting one of the members that speaks English was like, "your Albanian was perfect! Seriously." So, that was a nice thing to hear. Discouragement really can get the best of you sometimes. But, I'm trying really hard. Learning a new language... Not something I ever want to do again. Haha, but I'm starting to get it.. I think. Some days are better than others.

As I experience life here in Albania, and I see how much people suffer and how difficult life can be, I am brought closer and closer to Heavenly Father and I recognize so much more how much the gospel blesses lives and how it blesses families. Life will always have trials and tribulations but regardless of how big or small they may be, we have the gift of relying upon our Savior and allowing him to carry our burdens away. One thing that I love to share with these people is Helaman 5:12. When you are built on the rock of your Redeemer, you literally cannot fall. I rely on that a lot these days. I'm doing His work, I have to have faith that the Lord will provide me with the means to do what I need to do in order to help His Albanian children. As I develop my faith in this, I hope and pray that anyone that is having a difficult time can find hope through these things too. Life is hard, but it's never impossible. Heavenly Father always provides help for us.

I love you all and I miss you too. I wish for all of your sakes that you could have some of the fruit from over here.. Because let me tell you, it's absolutely divine. I'm gonna be such a snob when I get back and have to eat the fruit at home. :)

Kallofshi Mire!!!

Much love

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