Wednesday, March 9, 2011

zone conference!

yesterday we had zone conference and i am newly commited to the obedience that i vowed to myself (and have done a pretty good job at maintaing if i might say so myself....) at the conference, the first missionary who served in sicily spoke! it was so cool to hear about him starting from NOTHING and having 14 baptisms in 3 months!! 
it was an amazing conference and i learned so much. my companion gave her dying testimony and i cried so much thinking about the day i will have to do that too... my mission already seems too short...
last night when we got back from catania, emiliano came past the church and brought me and slla zeller a gift for "festa della donna"! it was women's day yesterday and its tradition to give women memosa flowers. he is sooooo nice!!! he is really really scared about getting baptized though. 
well aurelia came to church! she seemed to enjoy it. and she brought her boyfriend! we will see her tonight and get to know her a bit better. 
 we fasted with emiliano and i was super proud of him! he did it! however i wasnt proud of him for lying to everyone that he was fasting though. its like he's ashamed of what he's doing! mama does NOT like!! but he is changing his life for this, so i try to have patience. as we fasted i felt very sure that emiliano really will be baptized on the 25. i have no idea how its going to happen, especially since HE is the one having doubts and its his choice, but i SURE that it will. 
one of the highlights of the week was seeing the change that we can make in someone's life. we have this inactive member fllo rapposelli who has about 3 teeth, smokes and drinks, hasn't been to church for literally YEARS and says that the people from ragusa can burn in hell. seems like a lost cause. but for some reason i just like him. we go and visit him and sing hymns with him. i have gone once a week for the last three months. a few days ago, he told us that he was so grateful that we have really showed him the true love of Christ and he said he was going to come to church for the next two weeks!!!!! honestly it started as a selfish desire to make him come to church, but i proposed to him that we do a special musical number, and he agreed!! we will sing the 20th of march. plus this week is italy's 150th anniversary of independence and so the congregation is singing the national anthem (which is GORGEOUS) and he said he would like to come!!!! unreal... he got choked up as he thanked us and he asked us to never stop visiting him. we are the only happy thing he has in his life right now, and everytime we go, he tells us that he feels the Spirit while we are there. i NEVER expected this. i just kept going because i knew he had nothing and no one and i enjoyed the opportunity to sing. how blessed we have been... 
family, everyday i know more that the church is true, but especially when we get a big group of missionaries together. its AMAZING. we have power! it's cool! and we are united in the desire to spread the truth to our brothers and sisters. man i NEVER thought this would happen, but im here in italy with the little black nametag and a book of mormon with tears in my eyes becuase im overwhelmed by the beauty of my life. i wouldnt be here if this wasnt true. it is. a 14 year old boy had a question, and he saw God. and now im in sicily to tell everyone! 

 mom if you havent sent the package yet, you should put a note for emiliano. 
i love you all. thank you for your letters. 
until next week
sorella ashman

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