We've had a good week here in Vlorë. Summer is over, we've picked up some work, and the rainy season has started.
So, since we're still new to the area we decided to work with some of the active members and go from there. We've been able to work with Jani, Kristi, Amarildo, V. Pashaj, and M. Dervishi. I talked a little about Jani last week, we've met with him a few times this week and had some great lessons. He's super determined to be a strong member and he has a lot of desire to learn and understand the scriptures. So we've been able to answer a lot of his questions, and now he'll start helping us in lessons with other people as well. We had a good lesson with Kristi too, she talks super fast so when I was here before it was still hard for me to understand her sometimes, but now it's really cool seeing how well I'm able to understand her. She's doing really well and wants to serve a mission, so we're going to start helping her prepare for that. When I was here 6 months ago one of the members we worked with a lot was Amarildo. He's a super cool kid with a lot of desire to come to church, but he used to have to work like 12 hours every day support his family, but now he's not working at that factory anymore and can come to church! He really wants to serve a mission, and he's about to turn 18 so we're working with him to get him prepared to receive the Melchizedek priesthood and keep preparing to serve a mission. On Saturday he came and worked with us from 9 in the morning until 8 at night to be a missionary for a day. He did a great job and gave us a ton of ideas for things that we can do better to help the people here, it was awesome!
We're doing and planning a ton of activities to get the ward more involved too. On Saturday we had a really cool experience. We decided to do a ward volleyball activity at 6, but then it started to rain super hard all morning. So we thought that we might have to cancel, but we decided to not to. Then at 5:00 the rain stopped and the sun came out and we were able to go and play! So even though it wasn't some crazy experience where we ended up finding a million golden investigators, we were able to have an activity with some members and investigators, everyone had a good time, and we got to talk to everyone more about the gospel.
We also had stake conference in Durres this week. It was a ton of fun getting to see everyone from my past two areas, even though I haven't been away from Durres for that long. The talks were all about family, how we can keep it sacred, how we can have a strong eternal family, and why families are important. There were a lot of awesome moments and I really learned a lot. One amazing quote was from the stake president who said "if we want true salvation, a personal relationship with our Heavenly Father is important, necessary, and unreplaceable, but it alone is not sufficient. The celestial kingdom can only be created through the sealing ordinances of the temple sealing all of us together. It is not something that can happen individually, it must be done collectively." So now we just need to keep working to create more unity and bring families into the church!
All in all, it's been a fantastic week. Still working to find some more new investigators. We'll have English Course starting this week so hopefully we get some new people coming for that! Elder Murray is doing great, we're both kind of quiet so still trying to get to know each other a little more. But we're working well together and he's doing a great job.
Love you all! Mirupafshim, Zoti ju bekoftë!
A couple pictures from stake conference.
One is me with Lindis. It was awesome seeing him again.
The other one is me with Kristo from Fier. I served for an exchange in Fier for one day like 6 or 7 months ago and met him. He's an amazing kid, he memorizes the first, middle, and last names of all the missionaries he meets and is probably the strongest member in Fier. He was baptized by Elder Wilson so while I served with him I got to talk to him a few times on the phone, he's a stud and now we're really good friends.