Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Reggio Emilia!!! :)

Email: February 26, 2014

I am opening the second companionship of Anziani here in Reggio Emilia. There are also a companionship of sisters in the city, Sorella Killpack from Cedar, and Sorella Jones from Virginia. I live with Anz. Carter from Pleasant Grove and Anz. Berg from Canada some where....They are the coolest people ever. Honestly though I love my new companion the best! Anziano Finnerty is from Boston! Yeah fro the East Coast! hahaha The coolest part was, he was baptized two years ago and the only member of his family! He has the biggest love for the Book of Mormon of anyone I have EVER met. I love it! He is really creative and comes up with all these new ways to go about doing missioary work. His quick conversion story is the coolest thing ever. He heard about the Honor Code at BYU, found, requested a Book of Mormon and was baptized!  

We have the coolest ward here too. But really. I loved the members in Bologna, but I might just love the members in Reggio Emilia a bit more...we will see! I have never served in a branch or ward that has true missionary focus and mindset! They are on fire! I LOVE it! Pres. Dibb told me that Reggio Emilia was the highest baptizing unit (branch or ward) in the misison in 2013! The member involvment shows why. The ward, now with a Canadian missionary makes 18 different nationalities! It is the most diverse place I have ever been! Crazy! 

Our district is the 6 missionaries in Reggio Emilia, then 4(two sisters and two anziani) in Piacenza. Yeah the city I served in for 7 days a year ago, its a bit strange but really exciting. Crazy thing is Anz. Mendoza is from Udine. He doesnt have his visa so he has to stay in Itlay. He is called to serve in some south American country but is stuck in Italy as a temporary missionary in the milan Mission. His parents are from Santa Domingo or somthing like that, but was born and raised in Italy. He has learned English incrediably well with is fun to teach him slang...hahaha Anyways, district leader is a change of pace from zone leader and I feel like I am not going fast enough, but being a trainer, I am back up to my high level of stress ;) haha I love it though! 

We are in the Modena zone. The smallest in the mission, just 4 cities. Modena, Montova, Piacenza and Reggio Emilia. The zone leaders live in Modena. 

Tomorrow I will travel to Bologna with the ZOne leaders for a misison confrence just for zone leaders, district leaders, and sister training leaders. Half the mission leaders will be there because there in one in Milano and one in Bologna so I guess there will be 40 of us, because there are about 80 mission leaders total with all the district leaders. I will let you know how it goes! 

Keep me and my new companion in your prayers. He struggles, just as I did with Italian and misses home, like all missionaries so pray for him. Pray for me so I can konw how to best help him. ALso we have a man named Thomas from Gahna who will be baptized on Mrach 8th, he just passed his interview! :) Also, we fouind a man named Destiny from Nigeria and have set a baptimal date with him for April 4th! He truly is a golden investigatro we stoped on the street! He asked us for a copy of the Book of Mormon so that was super cool! He accepted the baptimal invite with no problems!

Vi voglio un sacco di bene!
Anziano Edwards

all those pictures were trasfered to my portable hard drive and its in the appartment so maybe next week I will email them again :)

Thursday, February 20, 2014

All You Can Eat Gelato! And Transfers?

Email: February 19, 2014

Well I am indeed being Reggio Emilia!!! I will be district leader there and also will be training! AGH!!!!!! I might be a little freaked out. So last trasfer there was one anziani companionship, and both of them are being trasfered away, so they are being replaced by two random youngish missionaries whom I dont know...and my greenie and I will be opening a second companionship there. So there will be 4 Anziani who have NO CLUE what were are doing in this city or how to navigate it, the members or the investigators ect.....lets hope for the best! Really! Oh, there is one companionship of sisters in Reggio Emilia so they will be able to help us a bit, hopefully...haha Pray for me! :)

Today for p-day we went to Ferrara and played soccer with other missionaries in our zone, it was 5 vs 5 so that was fun, I still think soccer is a boring sport, rather, boring past time or hobby ;) After, a member there, fed all 10 hungry missionaries! We had pasta al forno, slame, foccacia, bread stick things, and a pie/cake(dolce). SO GOOD!!!

This week was simple, nothing really happened. Our investigator gave me a nice italian shirt and tie as a good-by/thanks present which was really cool and kind of him.

We also went to Vicenza for p-day and did a scambio with one of the companionships there. I was with Anziano Pagano which was really fun. We taught a member referal ans she is ELECT! Holy crap! I have never had anyone ask so many perfect answers, which, we were able to respond to all of them simply and she loved the book of mormon, the family:a proclamation to the word, and also the restoration pamphlet. She takes church material and truly studies it, more than just reads it! She may be better then myself!!

Well have a fantastic week and I love you all!

Ciao tutti!
Anziano Edwards

Some of the pictures sent home this week are experiencing difficulties. Hopefully A.J. will be able to resend them next week and I can fix it. But for now enjoy them and use your imagination ;)
Us with a member when we paid 4 Euros each and had all you can eat gelato!!! We were all sick after, but it was worth it! It was a Valentine's special at the best gelato in Bologna. They are ranked in the top 10 in Italy! It's named Gelatera Gianni. We also met the owner himself, Gianni!
This Fratello might be the coolest member ever! 
My favorite English Class. I was so sad to tell them good-bye! I honestly LOVE Bologna with all my heart! I hate to leave! 
You don't see this driving in Italy...that is unless you are in "Little America" aka Vicenza Italy :) 
YUM!!! At the American Military Base
We drew the Plan of Salvation with street chalk as a new finding activity. SUCCESS! We had members too! SO much fun. The children "helped" us draw and we taught the parents about The Plan of Salvation with a gigantic visual aid all over the street :) Maybe the funnest things I have done! We received a bunch of potentials and even had full lessons with prayers on the street, right in the middle of the city on the weekend! :D
Street Display
Mostra di nuovo...Street display at the end of the night with all the children's artwork. Can you identify the Plan of Salvation parts vs the children's drawings ;)

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

It is More Blessed to Give than to Receive

Email: February 12, 2014

Go check out"" We had a member from Vicenza(who was the branch mission leader when I served there) who is involved with this world side study of how to make your community/couintry/world better.He and and two other non members gave the presentation where membes and a bunch of nonmembers from the community came for this little fire-side thingy which was held in our chaple her in Bologna this week. Anyways I really enjoyed it and and they took a picture at the end and they said it will be posted on this web site so see if you can find me!

Attached it the picture of my zone. We had zone trianing on monday in Padova. It was a blast! Really successfull and the zone loved the training! We trained on better use of Preach My Gosple and the on establishing Family Mission Plans! Fun stuff!

Quick little scripture from Acts 20:35 "it is more blessed to give than to receive" AMEN!

Friday we had consiglio della missione as mission leaders in Milano which was fantastic. I saw 4 of the 5 sorelle missionarie that are in my MTC group becuase they are all sister trainig leaders (aka a sister zone leader but not as much responsibility as zone leaders have) but they all go home next week! AGH! its weird to think their mission is over and mine will soon be over too!
We then rode with the Venezia Zone leaders to Padova in their car, lucky zone leaders!, to have our fancy monthly meeting with the stake Pres., High Council representitive for missionary work and then Pres. Dibb too! Pres. Dibb attended via Skype(so he is now my skype friend ;) ) and the Stake pres couldnt attend so he will next month. We discussed and reported on missionary work in the Venezia Stake and it was really effect and justd great! We have the coolest leaders in our stake! There is alot of good and exciting stuff happening here in theVenezia Stake and in Italy. Pres. Dibb mentioned  multiple times of how "the Brethren" aka apostles and area leaders, are visiting the mission this year, he wouldnt tell us who though! and he has been meeting with many of them as well. Pres. Dibb said he couldnt tell us too much but exciting things are in store for Italy and for Europe for the church! 

That was basically my week. Nothing else super exciting, just good old misionary work in the rain! There is blue sky today, I havent seen that for weeks it seems!

Well remember how much I love you becuse it is a bunch! 


Love your truly positive, healthy and HAPPY missionary! 
Life is great! Tell those other missionaries in the ward to lighten up, stop being so sick and have some fun and delight in the small successes!!!!

Ciao tutti! Vi voglio bene!

Anziano Edwards!

ps I am going to the American military base in Vicenza today for p-day and then we will be on companionship exchanges with Anz. Pagano (distrit leader) and his companion anz Smith, who has onyl been a missionary in the feild for about 5 weeks and is a a little ball of energy and hard work!

ciao di nuovo! 
Zone after Training
Pizza Party with our English Class
Yummy Mexican Food Restaurant that one of our less actives took us to the other evening.  Indeed we are VERY grateful for him.
Anziano Miles when he ate Balut - it is a Philippine dish which is a partially boiled duck egg. Yes, you eat the entire thing. I want to try it!
A member took pictures of us missionaries during our street display (aka la mostra stradale)

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

My Mission Rocks!!!

Email: February 5, 2014

Well this week will probaly suck a bit beacuse I usualy have a sticky note with all the things I wanted to write home and that is sitting on my desk back in the apartment...oh well.

First I love you all. Punto basta! :)

Second, we had a pizza party with our Englsih Class yesterday evening. It was a blast! Picture next week.

Third, We had interviews/Specialized Training(zone meeting with Presidente and the assistenti). The zone was super quiet and not willing to participate so it was really simple and honestly borring. :/  Interview with president Dibb was simple and to the piont. We discuessed the needs of the Bologna Zone and our monthly meeting with the stake leaders, pres. Dibb is going to attend for now on..oh no! haha Well if you are confused, because I dont think I ever told you about this but since the mission zones are aligned with stake or district boundries we(zone leaders) meet with your stake members each month to report how the missionary work is going and how we missionaries can work with the local leaders and member more effectivly. So the Venezia Stake has two mission zones in it, Bologna and Venezia. Us 4 zone leaders, me my companion and the two Venezia zone leaders (who live in Pordenone...random fact...) we meet monthy now with Pres. Dibb, Stake President and the high council representitive over missionary work. Yeah, all the big guys! haha basically, I hope we are prepared. We are going to meet in the city Padova as its in the middle for the zone leaders and the high council rep lives there. Pres. Dibb will attened via Skype and the Stake Pres I honestly have no idea if he can come. I heard he lives far far away, in Trieste, far east...

I recieved a letter from a lady who was baptized in Vicenza whom I worked with a bunch! She remembered me! haha What made the day better after noticing my package from Angie, was a letter from Damaris...the lady who walked in to the church after the baptism of William in Udine and was baptized the week I was trasfered. She sent me small package too! A cool tie and a really nice scarf! It was the best day ever! Well, almost...New converts, who are all fully active are the best! Damaris said she hopes to "go on vacation" where I am serving and attend church just to say thanks in person becuase she felt that paper and pen isnt sufficent to thank me enough for all I have done for here in allowing her to have the fullness of the gosple. Side note, William emailed me today. These people ar basicaly family to me. Tecnicaly they are my brothers and sisters, but more than jsut being apart of Gods family. I LOVE them so much. I cant even explain. The mission the best thing ever. I wouldnt and couldnt trade if for anything, even a Ferrari...hahaha I am greatful for YOU GUYS! You have made me who I am and thanks to angie I realized I have 6 months left! The sisters I was in the MTC with are going home in two weeks! WOAH! Crazy stuff! 

Next week I am going to VCicenza for P-day and then we will bitz the district leader there wed night and thrusday morning. I will be on scambio with Anz. Pagano, the one I half trained in udine! It will be a blast! 

Today I bought two paris of chruch slacks to wear when I come home, two t-shits and a pair of nice pants. While shopping we met a student from Ohio or somthing weird like that...we had a a good little chit chat of who we were. Smart kit, stuck out becuase he was obviously American! Its werid how easily I can tell if someone is Italian, Romanian, Albanian, Nigerian, Gahnian, American or Asian. The only pople I hav etrouble  with is determining where in specific a south American person is from. Brazialian are easy to point out. 

I think the new Bologna chapel will take a while becuase it just takes a LONG time for somthing to get built in Italy. Things are under construction for ever! Kinda like UDOT...I-15 will be "under construction" for my entiere life! Government workers.... ;)

The little cross refrence was shown to me by ANziano Chaimberlain when I was an scambio with him a few weeks ago. That missionary is a genius! 

Well keep on keepin on!

With love, 
Anziano Edwards

Email #2 February 5, 2014

Geez! I realize that my mission is nearly over and you are just making it seem more a reality! I feel that my family, friends, "normal" clothes, big streets, and everyting else not missionary is just a dream. I know it is all there. I love it all still. But it just doesnt seem quite real. I love my mission and wouldnt do ANYTHING to change it. Dont get me wrong, I am SUPER excited to come home. I miss it all. But I miss the mission, I know I will truly miss the mission once it is actualy over. I feel as if I am in a dream. My mission doesnt quite feel like real life and STG life is not real either...its weird. 
Simply put: My mission rocks! I love my family and friends. I want, but cant have both. Ugh. Its liek waht you said about big people/adult problems. I have to decide.