Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Exiting the Struggle Bus

Ummmmmm, okay. Hi everyone. This was literally the most wonderful week EVER. I will just start by saying that there is always a light at the end of the tunnel and that when we continue forward with patience and faith, the miracles and blessings WILL come. The last few months we have been cruising along on the struggle bus, but this week we finally started to exit it. Miracles have been falling out of no where and I literally could NOT be happier. The Lord prepares us for things. Everything we go for really DOES have a purpose. He knows what we need, and He always blesses us when we continue forward, putting our trust in Him.
I am just going to make a miracle list because this week was full of um!

First miracle happened the other morning when we were doing some finding work in a park near our house. There was literally one human in this park, so we talked to her. Her name is P. and she ruled right from the get go, telling us that she had talked to some Elders in the past. She told us that she has been studying with the JWs but she doesn't like them...she is just really searching for the truth and wants to know which church is right!! She even asked the beauitful question called, "why are there so many churches on the earth?" we were like...uh....GOOD QUESTION. then launched into the Restoration. It ruled and she just ate it all up. We were able to set up another appointment with her and yesterday we met her in the park again and taught her about the Book of Mormon a little more. She was like...uhhhh what do i have to do to get that book, i want to read it!!! When we told her it was hers for free, she was so excited to go home and study it!! MIRACLES. Seriously. We invited her to church and she really wants to come but says she has to find a skirt first...awh she is just so adorable. We are super stoked about it!

Number 2. One of our awesome members, N....she is like in her 60's and calls us her little babies. She just lovesssssss us and we love her just as much if not WAY more. awh. Anywayyyyys she is just super boss and has been trying to share the gospel with her sister for LOTS of years without much success. This week she said that she just felt like it was time to try again, so she called up her sister to see if she could bring the missionaries over and her sister agreed! So we went over there with her and had a beautiful lesson with her sister, G., and her husband C. They are so cute. We taught a simple lesson about the nature of God and how we can talk with Him. We also talked a little about the plan of salvation and the spirit was very special and strong! N. helped soooooo much, I gained a large testimony of member present lessons. they help sooooo much! by the end of the lesson, C. said....I actually learned something new today, i have never heard about that pre life thing! It was just a very special lesson and they were both so cute and receptive. They accepted our invitation to pray and afterwards N. told us that she really feels like it is the right moment for them! YAY.

#3 We had a little bit of time before an appointment with one of our less actives so we decided to do some street finding. We were just walking along and I stopped a lady who was frantically fumbling through her purse looking for something. We started talking with her and at the beginning she was not very engaged and seemed very distracted. But as we started talking to her more, she totally opened up. Her name is A. and she is from Brasile. She told us that she has been struggling hardcore with a gambling addiction...she called it a sickness and it is literally taking over her. She told us that she wants to fix it but has no idea how. She was desperate and sad. As we testified about the power of our message and how we know that she can overcome this through the Savior, the spirit was so very strong. She had tears in her eyes as we offered a quick prayer, asking Heavenly Father to help her and to give her strength. She told us that we were her angels and how she knows that this is her solution. It was the most incredible experience EVER. she told us to call her soon, that she just really needs our help. We walked away from her and felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude for the fact that we actually found someone that needs and wants our help. I know that Heavenly Father placed her in our path for a reason and we are very excited to help her see how this gospel can and will change her life.

Numero quattro. We had a suuuuuuper great lesson with a new investigator that we found on the street a few weeks ago! Her name is F. and she is 23. We brought one of our stellar members, M., and the lesson went really well! she had a lot of questions and it was great to have M. there because he has a catholic background and was able to explain a lot of things to her better then we could. She told us that she felt like we all have something different, and she likes it! We were super stoked. It just feels good to actually be teaching people and helping them come unto Christ. I loved this week because I just truly feel like a missionary. I feel like I am becoming an instrument in the hands of God and it is such a wonderful feeling!
Many more things happened, but these are probably the high lights. It was just SUCH A GREAT WEEK. literally cannot describe it! I am just overwhelmed with happy feelings and my testimony has grown like 100X stronger. I know that everything happens for a reason and that sometimes we don't feel like things are ever going to get better...but then they do and then you realize that you have grown soooo much. This is the craziest, up and down journey, but I wouldn't trade it for anything. I am so grateful to be out here in this beautiful country working as a part of the Lord's army to bring His children back. Each day I just get so excited to step outside and tell people why I am so happy and that they can find that happiness as well. This is the most wonderful work, and it always goes forth!
Love you all!
Alla prossima,
Sorella Burt

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Perfect Love Casteth Off All Fear

hi, salve, hello, sup, ciao!

Another beautiful week in paradise! the weather is getting warmer and warmer each day, it is amazing how much a little sunshine can literally do for the soul! This week was happy, so excited to share!

First of all, last thursday we went to Pordenone for a Zone Training. We have Zone training once a month and they are always just so much fun and I always learn so many wonderful things that I need to hear. The big news from the Zone Conference is.....yes, we indeed are getting iPads! It is official, confirmed by Elder Bednar himself. We are not really sure about a lot of the details, but they are for sure coming! It is pretty crazy to think about how much this will impact our missionary work. We talked a lot about how we need to prepare ourselves spiritually to receive them and to receive guidance from an apostle of the Lord. We are really focusing on exact obedience and doing all we can to be consecrated missionaries. It was a great little training! we also talked a lot about the verse in Alma 38:12...about being lovingly bold and not beating around the bush. Being bold is something that is very important as a missionary and something that I can definitely work on! The night after Zone Training we had some finding time and we decided to just go out and be realllllly happy and have really good attitudes and just try and teach everyone! Attitude literally changes everything. It was SO cool. We were able to stop LOTS of people and have really solid teaches with them. Although the outward success wasn't really there, we felt reallllllly successful because we were happy and we were doing the work of The Lord. It was a really good experience for me to see how I can decide my attitude and decide whether I am going to make the most of every situation.

Me and Sorella Gillespie! We were in the same district in Pavia and now she is my sister training leader!
We had an appointment with S. this week on Friday the 13th, but it fell through and she told us that we cannot see her until April, so that was a huge bummer...in the same day a bird pooped on my head...so lets just say that friday the 13th lived up to its name this month!

okkkkkkkay so we met the most wonderful lady this week. We were just walking down the road and this lady was trying to pass us, we stepped aside to let her pass and we realized that she was this little Asian lady in a big purple hat that we had seen on the bus a few times. She all the sudden just starts talking to us and asking us why we were out doing that on Sundays! we started talking with her (in english) and it turned into an hour long conversation. It was the cutest thing ever becuase she was linking arms with Sorella Hawks, and she would start walking and then stop walking every few steps just because she was SO into the conversation! Her name is P. and she is from South Korea, and she LOVES Jesus, holy cow. I cant really explain it, but she is literally the most wonderful human being. SO much faith and such a strong desire to do what is right. By the end of our little chat, she asked us if we would send her scriptures every night (which we already do, we send nightly scriptures to all of our members, investigators, less actives, ect) and then when we asked if we could pray with her she was like YESSSSSSS. oh my goodness PLEASE! she then told us how she has been trying to find someone that will pray with her. She has been having a hard time and has just really been trying to find someone that will pray for her. She tried the Catholic priest guy but he told her she would have to pay. So she said that she was really sad and decided to go for a walk, and then she found us! She told us that we were such a miracle for her. It was literally the greatest experience. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father placed us in her path.

this is my favvvvvvvv lil antique shop!!!
My fave scripture for this week is in Moroni 8:16 "Perfect Love casteth out all fear." I have been thinking a lot about how love and how as we strive to truly love and serve those around us, there is no room for fear! We will not fear rejection, or awkwardness, or sadness, or what people will think of us. If we truly are trying to love as the Savior loved, we have no need to fear!

Today Sorella Hawks and I bought matching Bora tshirts, so i ammmm super stoked about that. also little trieste snowglobes #tourists?
I am just super happy and loving being in the service of others! The work here is looking up. Thanks for the support as always! Love you all forever.
Sorella Burt

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Trust in Him

Things are just plugging along like usual here in good ol' Trieste! I forgot my planner with my list of things I wanted to write about...so this could be a little interesting! Hopefully I can remember some stuff that happened this week.

I wanna start out by sharing something really cool that has been happening lately. It is with one of the Investigators of the Anziani, but the Sorelle have a lot to do with it! So a while back, like around the time that I got to Trieste, Sorella Nedelkov and I were doing some Area Book calls, looking through ex investigators and calling them to see if they would be interested in taking the lessons again. We ended up calling this man named G., and from the record it looked like he had a family. We called him up and he was super nice and said that he would be willing to meet with us...long story short, after a few weeks, we were able to set up an appointment with him and went there with a member. It was a really good thing that we brought the member, because it ended up being just him (he had separated from his girlfriend, they have a small daughter) Anyyyyyways, we went there and taught him a lesson and he was super cool and super interested!! We had to pass him to the Anziani because he is a single man...that was like 2 transfers ago. But NOW, the Anziani have started teaching him and it has just been the biggest miracle EVER. He is 100% GOLDEN, like as golden as they come. The anziani took one of our coolest members with them to one of their lessons with him and it just turns out that they were like best friends back in high school! And then G. came to church and just happened to know like a LOT of the members!! He just lovvvved church and felt super welcome! The coolest part is that after church he shared the gospel with like 3 of his friends and is giving a book of mormon to one of them, and he isnt even baptized yet!! I dont really know if i explained that super well, but i am telling you, it is just really neat. The Anziani are having a lot of success with investigators that we actually found, so that has been really cool to see! I gained an even stronger testimony of the reality and perfection of the timing of the Lord and how he knows when His children are ready to recieve this gospel. We each play a small role and even if we dont know that we are, WE ARE.

On Thursday night this last week I got a text from the bishop asking me to give a talk for 10 minutes in sacrament meeting on Sunday...I accepted but i was scared out of my mind! He asked me to talk about Missionary Work...naturally. There were like 1,000 things i could have slash wanted to say about missionary work but as I thought and prayed about it, i really felt like i should talk about patience and trust in the Lord's timing. I spent a lot of time preparing and trying to figure out how to say what i wanted to say in Italian, but when it came down to it, i just left it up to The Lord. I was terrrrrified before hand, giving my first full blown talk in Italian in front of the entire ward, but I can testify that when we do our part and ask the Lord to help us, He literally gives us the very words that we need! It went really well and I had a lot of people come up to me after and thank me for what i said and that it helped them a lot, so that ruled! some even told me that i spoke reallllly good Italian, so that was very kind! It was a huge testimony builder to me that when we have faith and trust in the Lord, He ALWAYS delivers. Always. He can help us do things that we NEVER could have done on our own. He enhances our abilities and talents and through Him we can use those abilities to touch the lives of others!

We accidentally went to Slovenia twice this week...Okay maybe only once was on accident...haha Trieste is like really close to Slovenia and this week we went on some adventures up in the mountains to try and contact some referrals...The bus takes you through Slovenia, so that is fun! For like 5 minutes you look outside and everything is in a different language and then the people getting on the bus are all speaking a different language and it is just a fun lil experience. At one point we were walking down the road and Sorella Hawks was like...are we in Italy or Slovenia?? hahaha not many people get to say that!

The finding continues and continues! Horray. We talked to a lot of wonderful people this week that we are hoping and praying will soon turn into investigators! That is our problem, we talk to lots of people and find tons of potentials, but then they just never answer us so it makes it hard to set up appointments and start teaching them. We are learning a lot of patience and it is just wonderful!

I cannot really remember anything else that really happened this week! But i am feeling really happy and just very content to be right where i am right now. I know that this church is true and that is why i am here! It brings me so much joy! I love you all and I hope you know that our Heavenly Father does too.

alla prossima,

Sorella Burt

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Third time's the charm


The first big piece of news is that we got transfer calls this week, and.....
WE ARE STAYING TOGETHER. in Trieste. holllllllla.

We were SO pleasantly surprised! I thought for sure we would get split up with all the new sisters coming in and such. And typically sisters only stay together for one transfer unless they are being trained. So yeahhhhhhh we were really stoked to get the news that we get another transfer together! And I get a third here in beautiful trieste! third time's the charm, eh? I am really excited, i feel like big things are coming for us here...i feel like I have been saying that for a while, but this transfer, it has to be real! There is more work for me to do here, and I am excited to see what the Lord has in store for me and how I can help the work here in Trieste grow even more. Each person makes a difference. The little things added up are what will make the big difference in the end.

"I can testify that we receive answers from the Book of Mormon"
The big miracle for us this week was that S. came to church!!! YIPPEEE. we were just soooooo excited! She is just so cute and met us at the bus stop and we went there together, we gave her a little tour of the church because we were a little early and then she was able to meet a ton of the members! the members were just so wonderful and welcoming, ah it was just so happy! Every person that came up to her and introduced themselves, just made her smile wider. I think that she just needs somewhere that she can feel welcome and have friends in her life...the church is the perfect place for that! She could only stay for two hours, but from what she said, she really enjoyed it! It was so cute, when the members would ask her how she met the missionaries, she would just smile and proudly tell them how she met us by chance on the street one day! (NOTHING is by chance, by the way) it was just a wonderful miracle and we are really excited for her.

This week we saw many tender mercies from Heavenly Father. When we needed it most He would send us a kind human to talk to. We were blessed many times with talking to very nice people on the streets. With the amount of finding that we do, the rejections often feel like they just pile up. It is weird but you kind of just have to become immune to rejection...it happens so often that you just have to learn to not take them personally and just make it fun! It is really funny how people reject us sometimes...one of my favorites was this week when i tried to talk to a lady at a bus stop, she looked at me like i was a complete crazy person, took 2 steps forward and then looked ahead...haha i can still you! people are too funny. Something that I heard at church this week was that the prepared people won't try to run from us...if they are truly prepared, they will listen to what we have to say! We are just trying to keep good attitudes and lean on our faith that we will find these people that He is preparing for us to find.

We had a cool experience last night at our English Class. When we got to the church, there was only one man there for english class. We were very surpirsed to see him, because he was a man that had come up and talked to us at the bus stop near the church the other night to ask us if we still did a free english class. We told him that we did and we were very surprised when he actually showed up! He ended up being the only person that came and at first he was a little bit sketchy...but as the lesson started, we quickly saw that he was not sketchy at all! He was great. The neat thing was that our English lesson turned into a full blown Restoration lesson! He was asking us questions about our church and the organization and we ended up just talking for the whole class about that. It was a super neat miracle, he seems to have a lot of real interest and we were just really excited! It is amazing how the spirit works and how a lesson about introducing yourself in english can turn into the Restoration. so. cool.

That is about all I have for today. Things are swell and the weather is getting warmer! Plus we got sushi this week, so that was a total dream. i have missed it soooooo much. Also, Trieste has the most adorable little old tram that takes you up the mountain side and we rode on that this week and it was a complete dream as well. awhhh. i love this place.
I can testify that we can receive answers to every single question and worry that we have through the Book of Mormon, I had a really neat experience with that this week. Heavenly Father knows us perfectly and He understands our very needs. i know that this church is TRUE. that is why I am here.

I love you all! Have a good one!

Sorella Burt

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Just livin the LIFE

Heyyyyyyyyy ALL.

Another week over and done. They just keep going quicker and quicker! Mannnnn. This was a fairly solid week! Definitely had its ups and downs...but i would say that the ups, like always, overshadow the downs! Thank goodness for opposition in all things so that we can appreciate the good times! #amiright?
It started last Wednesday night, we as missionaries put on a little activity for the youth. There aren't many youth in our ward and the ones that we have aren't super united as a group. So we are trying to start something kind of like mutual that we have in America! We planned this but photo scavenger hunt all around the city. We made clues and split everyone into two groups and we had an hour to complete it and then make it back to the church. We had a pretty good turnout and it seemed like everyone had a lot of fun! We were excited because one less active girl and one non member came! We are hoping to keep activities like this going on so that the youth can bond and have opportunities to bring their friends!

On Friday we had Zone Conference in Mestre...and lets just say we are very lucky that we made it there. It was probably the biggest struggle morning of my entire life! To start, my alarm didn't go off for whatever strange reason, so we woke up about an hour late...we were like freaking out and hurried and got ready in like ten minutes and then went outside to try and catch a bus to the station so we could catch our train. Unfortunately the buses at 6 in the morning are super weird so we ended up running all the way to the station but we still missed our train! We were praying the whole time that somehow we would be able to make it there...Zone Conference is like a big deal and we could not miss it and could not be late! Anyways...Heavenly Father answered our prayers and there just happened to be another train that left a little bit after the one we missed! We took it and made it there, just a little bit late...but still!! He always answers our prayers, that is a fact. Zone Conference was literally the greatest thing EVER. It was EVERYTHING that i needed to hear all wrapped up into one meeting! Seriously soooooo many prayers answered. The biggest most coolest announcement ever is ....are you ready for this?? strap on those seat belts.........on April 27th Elder David A. Bednar is coming to OUR MISSION specifically to talk to us missionaries!!!!!!!! We get a SIX hour meeting with him in a chapel in Milano, every single missionary in the mission. CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT?? yeahhhhh i am still geekin out about it!!!! I get the chills every time i think about it. An apostle of the Lord is coming to talk to us, and help teach us how to better do missionary work. What an incredible opportunity. AH. so excited. Also during Zone Conference we watched Meet The Mormons!! I was super excited to watch it because i have heard so much good about it...and it lived up to the hype!! I loved it and it had a lot of really amazing lessons and themes. We are really excited because they are translating it into 10 languages, and Italian is one of them! We are going to be able to use it as a super sweet missionary tool come May, so i am really excited about that! This is going to be a really special year for this mission. Elder Bednar, The Rome Temple, and Meet the Mormons in Italian! Big things are coming and i am so humbled and excited to be a part of it! At Zone Conference i learned a lot about our decisions. The theme was the quote by President Monson, Decisions Determine Destiny. It is soooooo true, if we want tomorrow to be better, we need to change TODAY. we cannot wait for the rainbow...we gotta dance in the rain! I am really excited to put what i learned into practice and to NOT DELAY but to ACT TODAY.
Zone Conference in Maestre

All of the Sorella at Zone Conference

We went to Mestre again on Saturday and Sunday for the sessions of Stake Conference. It was a pretty big deal stake conference because they were reorganizing the stake presidency! There were two members of the 70, Elder Texiera and Elder DeFeo, so that was really neat to be able to learn from General Authorities. On Saturday we got there early because of the members we were riding with so we got to sit in on the Relief Society training meeting for all of the leaders in the stake. When we walked into the room, Sorella Dibb (the mission presidents wife) was like, oh perfect, Sorelle! Come sit by me so you can translate the meeting! I was like....uh...me? I have NEVER translated before and was terrified! I said a quick prayer in my heart and then sat down and the meeting started. The gift of tongues is real, that is for suuuuuuure. I was able to translate the entire meeting, only missing a few things! It was truly a miracle. Cute Sorella Dibb was really impressed, and so was I! That was definitely all the spirit and it was really cool to see that power work for reals! We are not alone in this work. That is FOR SURE.

This week is really exciting for us here in Trieste! We are having a baptism!!! It is one of the Anziani's investigators, Harrison. He is about 17 and is from Nigeria! He rules and we are all really excited for his baptism! He even asked me to give a talk on the Holy Ghost, so that should be interesting! First real deal talk in Italian, holla. Super excited for him to take this important step in his life and to be able to receive the blessings. There have been a lot of baptisms in the mission lately and a lot more that are coming this week! The work in Italy IS indeed moving forward, we are so blessed to be a part of it!

One funny thing that happened this week that i thought you all should know about...it was on the way to one of the sessions of conference and we were talking with Susannah and her mom (the two that you all met over skype on christmas)...i cant remember exactly what we were talking about but i was trying to talk about Winter....instead of saying winter(inverno) I said the word inferno...which means hell...so that was embarassing! Everyone got a really good kick out of it and I just felt really dumb. #italianprobs #woops

Susanna is leaving for her mission to St. George, Utah this week

Susanna will be the greatest missionary EVER
Transfers are coming up super sooooooooon. We get the call this Saturday to see who's stayin and who is going...or if we get to stay together! The latter is very unlikely, but we can always hope! President Dibb said that next transfer we are getting A LOT of new sisters so that will make things very interesting! It will be crazy to see what happens!

This morning I read some beautiful versus in 3 Nephi 21:26-29; it is when Jesus Christ is visiting the Americas and He is talking about when the gospel will get preached to all the world. I love these verses because it talks about how the Lord prepares the way for us all to return home and that He is always with us. He prepares us ALL. Not just those who have not yet accepted the gospel. We are ALL being prepared each and every day through our experiences so that one day we might be able to one day return to the presence of our Father. We are all just walking on this path and our heavenly home is our ultimate goal. We must help others to find the path and also continue to progress ourselves on the path, each day. With each decision we choose which way on the path we want to go. So lets choose good so we can move forward, eh? and HELP others to move forward as well! that is why we are here!

I love you all and hope that you have another wonderful week!

Tante belle cose,
Sorella Burt

today we saw a reallllllly cool castle
I am getting really good at calcetto...foosball? its a big deal here.

We got to see this really cool castle