Sunday, April 29, 2018

March 12

Përshëndetje familja!

Another week come and gone. This week was good. We've done a lot of finding and met some new people that are really cool. The rest of our investigators have all been really busy this week though, so we haven't been able to meet with them. Also the weather's been way better this week. The sun was out and shining for most of the week. Until today where it's pouring rain, but that's just Albania for you.

One exciting thing this week though was that we got to meet with Amadeo a bunch. Amadeo is a recent convert here in Shkoder, he was baptized back in August and he's still super strong. But normally he's been working 16 hours a day, so he's not really had any time to sleep, let alone meet with us. But now he's not working that job any more and working on finding a new one so we've been able to meet almost every day. It's been awesome because we actually have no way to contact him (his phone hasn't been working) but we always end up running into him at the perfect time. He has a super strong testimony and loves to study the scriptures, so we've been meeting with him and discussing a ton of really interesting connections between the Book of Mormon and the Bible. Other fun things about Amadeo, he's a martial arts master and speaks really good English which he actually learned through google translate. He's super awesome.

Elder Isufaj and I have been teaching a temple preparation class for some of the members here and that's been a super cool experience. There are a ton of super awesome members here who haven't been able to go to the temple yet, who totally need to go. So we're working with them and they're super excited. There's one couple who should be able to go on the stake trip this May and some others that might be able to go in September.

We've also met some cool people this week too. One new person in Lezhe is named Edmond. He's met with the missionaries before but then he left to Italy and lost contact. Now he's back and he seems to have a lot of desire to keep learning. He's catholic and believes a lot in Christ and loves the psalms. Another is Kujtim. We had a really good Restoration lesson with him, he didn't talk a lot, but he seemed engaged and willing to meet again. And then here in Shkoder we also met some cool kids named Pali and Daniel. Pali is 16 and was super polite and seems to have a lot of desire to keep learning. Daniel is his little brother, who doesn't know how to read so normally he wasn't as interested. Hopefully we'll be able to keep meeting with all of them.
One thing that has stuck out to me this week is how much the members here sacrifice for their faith. The Catholic church is super strong here in Shkoder and Lezhe and everyone has a lot of bad misconceptions about our church so the members are all constantly persecuted by family members and neighbors. But they stay strong. They're amazing examples and super strong members.

This week we're going to have a training on the church's Easter initiative so I'm excited to learn more about that and to get to go out and share that.

I'm doing well and still loving Albania.
Have a great week!
Elder Gardiner

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