Tuesday, July 10, 2018

June 18

Përshëndetje familja!

Well once again it's been a fun week up here in Shkoder. But before I get into that, as the biggest matter of business, transfer calls were this weekend. Luckily, everything turned out as I had hoped. I'll be staying here in Shkoder/Lezhe with Elder Perry for my last transfer. I'm super pumped for the time we have and we're going to make it count. Unfortunately I'm a little low on time today so I'll make this short.

A lot of great things happened this week, including an exchange with the Zone Leaders which always makes things even better. We've done a ton of finding this week and managed to get a lot of numbers. We've set up appointments and had a couple lessons, hopefully more to come. While on exchange with Elder Mortensen, who I've now gone on exchanges with in 5 different cities through Albania, we were able to have a great lesson with some people from our English Course in Lezhe. They go to a school with American teachers so they decided to ask their teachers what they think about Mormons. And it turned out to be mostly positive, so that was great, and the negative things we were able to clear up easy enough, and then we were able to bear a powerful testimony that they can know personally if what we teach is true or not if they read the Book of Mormon and pray about it.

It rained super hard and even hailed a few times this week, which was pretty unexpected. Luckily it didn't really even interfere with our work. 

We've been working with a guy named Gjergj for a little bit now. He said he wants to be baptized and become a member, and he always seems really committed to do what we say, but he still hasn't shown up for church. Hopefully this week we can change that. 

This Sunday was fantastic and full of miracles. I was assigned to give a talk in Shkoder but forgot until that morning, but I was able to find a bunch of scriptures and talks that were exactly what I felt like I needed to talk about. Also, about 15 minutes before church started we heard the door open and someone start talking in English, and then in walks a member from Taiwan! She's been baptized for 10 years and was here on vacation for one day, which happened to be Sunday, so she looked up where she could go to church from LDS.org and was able to find our church. One of the members translated for her and it was a super powerful spiritual experience for all the members. It was awesome to see how quickly all of them cheerfully brought her in and made her feel at home, a great example of Christlike love for our brothers and sisters of the gospel. Then Denis and Danjela both came to church in Lezhe, rounding out the perfect Sunday. 

Then today we got up early and went down to Tirana to hang out with the other missionaries and do a few other things. I bought a suit and then we went and got some lunch with the Tirana missionaries. It was a lot of fun getting to hang out with them, some of them possibly for the last time. And then as another example of God's care for us, we were walking back to get a bus to Shkoder but turns out I don't know the bus stop for buses that go that way, so we were lost. Some people pointed us the way and as we were walking we saw a bus just ahead of us with a sign for Shkoder, so we were able to get quickly back to Shkoder!

I'm super excited for these last 6 weeks, and I feel like some miracles will happen over this next little while. I love these cities and the people here, it's been such a blessing to serve here.

I love you all! Have a great week!
Elder Gardiner

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