Monday, 30 June 2014

Yay July!

Hey everyone!

It's kind of crazy for me to think that June has come and gone, but then again when I look back I'm like.. that was forever! Time is so weird out here. 

So this week was our first week into this transfer and I'll be honest, I was pretty nervous. Sister Smith and I were really similar personality wise and we just hit it off.. So I just didn't know what to expect. However, Sister Wilding and I have common goals for this transfer. I'm super happy about that. So even if we are different personalities I think that the companionship will still be okay because we both just want to work so hard. Seriously, we've planned and worked like crazy. We've spent our lunches this past week by going through the Vlore super books and writing down every less active member and recent converts. This week we'll have a meeting with our district and basically we're going to divide and conquer Vlore. As I said in my last e-mail, it was a kind of bittersweet thing to stay here but I've realized I'm really excited because this transfer Sister Wilding are absolutely determined to make this area stronger than it was when we came to it.

People call Vlore the "promised land" because so many baptisms have happened in this past year. The ward is also really young it kind of reminds me of a singles ward back at home. But even though we've had tons of baptisms are weekly sacrament attendance isn't anywhere close to where it should be. I think too often we think of success in missions being based on whether or not we're baptizing people but I'm so excited to be able to strengthen the people that have been found and to help them establish their true conversion to Jesus Christ and to moving forward with their testimonies. 

We had a missionary come home from her mission in this past little while. She was serving a mission in England and it was so exciting to meet her. It's so interesting to hear an Albanian speaking English with a slightly British accent.. It's crazy. But yesterday we sat and talked with her and she just cried. She told us how hard it is being home and how much she wishes she could go back and help people that she loves and things like that and as she was talking I just realized how much our hearts become attached to these people and this life. Some days it truly is so hard.. You're just like, okay.. I'm going to willingly go outside into that awful heat to stand on the street and have people give me dirty looks because they think I'm a Jehovah's Witness (the JW's are not very well liked here) or I'm going to try to testify to these people that the book that I'm holding is the key to their happiness and that it changes lives but.. rather than being all eloquent and powerful I probably just sound like a retard because I'm still learning their language.. or I'm going to walk across the city to an appointment to knock on the door and have the person not be there. I'm not even going to lie to you, there are days that I'm like why am I even doing this? But then, you have one meeting where a recent convert tells you where they've read in the Book of Mormon or they share an experience where the Spirit has touched them and it's all completely worth it. I've seriously never felt more joy than hearing someone tell me how much the lesson that we gave them was exactly what they needed to hear. Or, when I walk into the church and one of the young girls comes and hugs me like I'm her favourite person in the entire world.. It's just all so worth it! It's the most gratifying thing ever and I know that I'm exactly where I need to be. 

It's still really hot here of course and I'm just praying that I will survive through July and August.. I'm told that it supposedly cools down around half way through September. I hope that happens. I'm sorry to hear about y'all in Canada and the lame weather that you're having.. However, I think you should consider it a blessing. There are some days that I'm just so hot that I don't even know what to do with myself. Haha, I don't want to sit against anything because it's hot.. I don't want to stand anywhere because it's hot.. I just wanna throw myself into the Adriatic Sea... Too bad that I'm a missionary and that's not allowed.. Haha but whatever it's chill.. I'll survive.

Sorry I don't have any pictures this week, it's just been crazy busy and I haven't really had that much to take pictures of. I'll try and have something for ya next week!

I love you all and I hope that all is well with every single one of you! You're in my prayers!

Much love, 

Motra Vermunt

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