Thursday, December 28, 2017

December 25

Since we still have a bit of time for now I'll share a few highlights from this week.

This week we had another set of exchanges and in a twist of fate I got to work in all 3 of my past areas. In Vlore we got to go to a missionary homecoming welcome activity. That was fun because we got to hear a few stories from her mission, and got to see a lot of members. Then our Elbasan exchange was fantastic, it might have been my favorite exchange ever. The day started off normal, we had some lessons with investigators, taught English Course, and met with some members. Then we had a little bit of time left so I felt like we needed to call Lindis and have a lesson with him. So he came and we had a super good lesson. We just read a chapter from wherever he was in the Book of Mormon, it wasn't even one of those especially powerful chapters, but just discussing it between the three of us was super powerful. Then we just talked a little bit about how he's doing, how much both of us have changed, and what's going on in Elbasan. Then Lindis asked me to give him a blessing, and it was the most spiritual experience of my mission so far. The words just kept coming and I felt like I understood his situation and wanted to bless him with anything possible. I honestly can not describe the amount of charity that I feel for him. He's honestly like a brother to me. 

Then on Saturday we got to go to Durres for the stake Christmas program and I got to see a ton of the members from Durres. The program was great. The church was packed and everyone seemed to have a really good time. It's amazing how much it feels like there's a part of me that I've left in each of these places I've served.

On a sadder note, Redi didn't get baptized this week. He's ready, he's just too worried about what everyone else thinks. So we'll keep working with him, but it might be a little while before he gets baptized. But on the upside, we had a lot of investigators come to church and people are progressing really well. There are three young girls who have been coming to English Course, and they came to all the activities this week, and also they've been in church these past two weeks. So this week we'll try and talk with their parents, and hopefully we can teach all their families.

That's about it for me. Have an amazing Christmas!
Elder Gardiner

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